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Old 03-02-2012, 02:27 PM   #1
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Reservations required in the NE?

For the past two summers, we have spent most of that time out West with a jaunt to Alaska. We did all this without any reservations, and with no problems finding room in CGs. This summer, we are planning to hug the northeast coast line as much as possible and then concentrate on Maine's coastal areas and maybe on to Nova Scotia. We will be in no hurry with no particular agenda...we like it that way.

What do you think, can we get away with this 'no reservations' approach on the eastern seaboard during the summer/fall months? Or would we be pressing our luck? Also, any good trip planners for the area(like the Milepost for Alaska) you could recommend?

Thanks...Bob
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:52 PM   #2
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My humble opinion for the northeast. Sometimes a tough call. I would suggest do you the take your time thing, try to decide where you will stay the next night(s) and give a call. Lots of times you will get a come on over, we have room. With that being said, some of the more popular campgrounds in equally popular areas can fill really fast. Places like Fishermans Memorial Park in RI (Could be fully reserved now), Salisbury Reservation in MA(same), some of the ME coast you might want to check a few days ahead.
OK, that took a lot of words to say I really am not sure. But have a great trip.
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Old 03-02-2012, 04:13 PM   #3
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Hi scenic route,
Those living in the north east are big on holidays to get out of the cities. Consider having reservations for every holiday week. That starts at Easter and goes through Columbus Day (week). I know Columbus Day may not be considered a holiday biggie, but in the NE it is the last chance before winter.
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Old 03-02-2012, 05:51 PM   #4
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Considering the density (population), limited camping season, high cost of fuel......
I'd say reservations will be your friend.
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Old 03-02-2012, 06:15 PM   #5
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Two Key Words! Coast and Summer,you might have trouble getting a reservation today-even
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Old 03-02-2012, 06:51 PM   #6
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Last summer - 20 NE states, 4 months. Reservation one time well in advance - 4th of JJuly. All the rest only one or two days in advance. Only one time did not get our first choice. Enjoy Maine, positively best state IMO. Don't remember offical state website but it also gets my vote for best. Try Blistered Fingers music festival and North Country Rivers. So far Maine only state we are planning on going back to spend lots of time. If you can't find things to do PM me.
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Old 03-03-2012, 07:01 AM   #7
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Not sure why you would think Maine is any different than any other tourist area.

Think about this, our season is short. The coastal area is a prime tourist area. No one knows about the other Maine.(Inland) You want a beautiful spot on the water within short distance to everything else.

I think I have answered your question. Booking now may be too late for many areas. Your on your own.

Consider one of the many state web sites. We are "Vacationland" and the state does a wonderful job of providing information on line depending of the subject of choice.
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:11 AM   #8
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Old Orchard Beach Maine, has 8,000 year-round residents (3,000 of which, myself included, live in RVs year round), 35 campgrounds (ranging from 200 - 750 spaces each), and between the May to August: 2million tourists (30,000 of them from Quebec during LaKermese - most of whom have life-time reservations and have come every year for 30, 40, 50 years or more), 75% of those 2million tourists arriving in RVs and expecting to find a place to park.

Most get here and find out that many campgrounds have a waiting list backlogged 4 or 5 years or more. There are people who have said they waited 10 years before they got high enough on the list to park.

Yeah, if you ain't got a reservation, you ain't getting in. And you'll find most of the NE Coast the same way.
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:26 AM   #9
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Maine campgrounds were not as busy last year as in years past, so you could do well without reservations. Normally I would not make that bet in July & August, though.

I pretty much agree that reservations for holiday weekends are a must. Also popular destinations within an hour or so of major cities tend to be full nearly every weekend in July & August. Otherwise, I would probably call the day i planned to arrive and get there early, say by 3 -4 pm. You can usually get a site if you arrive before the crowd.
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Old 03-03-2012, 01:23 PM   #10
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My thanks to all that replied. I will look up some of the CGs mentioned. I understand some CGs don't open until May, so I hope I have some time to research some of them before they fill. It's off to the book store to see if I can find a guide of some sort for the NE. I'll also hit up the Maine websites. We have never been to Maine or any NE state further up the coast than Myrtle Beach, so this is all new territory. Much research is needed...

I like the 'unknown'(inland) Maine idea and hope to visit that part of Maine as well. It's just that we have seen a lot of the Maine coastal pictures and it sure would be nice to spend some time in some of those picturesque places. Don't really need to camp on top of them, just have the ability to visit via Jeep. Any suggestions on CGs with that in mind?

It would be nice to use some CGs as a destination stops while in Maine(3-7 days)...and on the way up for that matter. It looks like it is going to be difficult to do that considering the popularity of the area and our inability to nail down specific places on specific dates. We're 'wingers' at best.

Thanks... Bob
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Old 03-03-2012, 01:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scenic route View Post
I will look up some of the CGs mentioned. I understand some CGs don't open until May, so I hope I have some time to research some of them before they fill. ... Don't really need to camp on top of them, just have the ability to visit via Jeep. Any suggestions on CGs with that in mind?....It would be nice to use some CGs as a destination stops while in Maine(3-7 days)...and on the way up for that matter. It looks like it is going to be difficult to do that considering the popularity of the area and our inability to nail down specific places on specific dates. We're 'wingers' at best.
The campgrounds may not open until May, but I expect many of them are taking reservations now. When we traveled the Maritime Provinces a few years ago, we made reservations ahead of time (more than a month). Most campgrounds were full when we got there, with our space empty and waiting. Also keep in mind many campgrounds in the northeast are older and were laid out in the days when rigs were smaller. Big rig sites can be elusive in some areas.

As far as specific campgrounds are concerned, we stayed at Red Apple Campground outside of Kennebunkport, ME last summer. Nice centrally located place with many permanents but a number of spaces allocated to travelers. We had made reservations well in advance and were glad we did. A space or two might have remained vacant for one night in between reservations but that was about it.

I agree about liking to 'wing it'. That's what we did in Alaska with the exception of the July 4 weekend on the Kenai. But in New England, seems like it's the 4th all summer along the coast.
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Old 03-03-2012, 02:25 PM   #12
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I agree about liking to 'wing it'. That's what we did in Alaska with the exception of the July 4 weekend on the Kenai. But in New England, seems like it's the 4th all summer along the coast.
It's starting to sink in...time for a change in 'style', me thinks. Bob
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Old 03-03-2012, 03:10 PM   #13
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We travelled through the maritimes and in Maine last year without reservations made more than a day ahead as we did not want to be locked into a travel schedule. On our visit to Bar Harbor we stopped at the Walmart about noon and started calling campgrounds. Had no problem finding one although all are expensive. I suppose though if we had wanted to be in the Park we may have been out of luck.

Its a matter of preference I guess as we have a friend who never travels without reservations made weeks ahead.
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Old 03-03-2012, 04:10 PM   #14
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Thanks wd4kaq...a flicker of hope. I just found a CG just north of Bar Harbor...no reservations allowed. That sounds like a good place to stay for a couple of weeks...if ya can get in! Still look'n. Bob
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