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Old 06-11-2016, 05:42 PM   #1
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Choosing MH routes

We are motor homing in a 45 footer + toad for one year but only 2 months experience. We've ended up in too much traffic & narrow mountain roads & would like to avoid this. Any suggestions for apps, etc.?
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Old 06-11-2016, 06:07 PM   #2
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I have been searching for an App that I can enter the RV characteristics and route accordingly. I haven't found one. There is an App by Rand McNally but it is pretty pricey and the reviews weren't stellar.

Another approach is to get an RV or Trucker GPS. Camping world sells them, so do truck stops. The GPS Store is an online store but I always want touch and play before I buy.

Finally there are maps / charts you can get at truck stops that have information on truck routes.

I am still looking for the best solution but that is what I have bound so far.
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Old 06-11-2016, 06:45 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cindysue View Post
We are motor homing in a 45 footer + toad for one year but only 2 months experience. We've ended up in too much traffic & narrow mountain roads & would like to avoid this. Any suggestions for apps, etc.?
how are you deciding which roads to use? a paper map will tell you if it is a 4-lane, 2-lane, divided, not divided, etc.

if you use interstates learn what the numbers mean.
  • even numbered interstates run east/west (even if the pavement occasionally turns north/south).
  • odd numbered interstates run north/south (even if the pavement occasionally turns eat/west).
  • 3-digit numbers generally indicate a by-pass route around cities. by-pass routes may or may not have less traffic
travel/traffic thru cities is usually better during non-rush hour times.
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Old 06-11-2016, 06:55 PM   #4
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The Garmin 760 LMT allows you to enter in your coach.
You can pick what roads you drive on but I dont think
it will avoid twisty mountain roads.

Google maps will show you the terrain of a route

BUT

It is still up to a human being to decide where and how they
want to go and see. We have driven many backroad highways
and found many interests.
If you are the type that just wants to get from point A to point B
as soon as possible, then maybe just enter in that you want only freeways.
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Old 06-11-2016, 07:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by luckyd View Post
The Garmin 760 LMT allows you to enter in your coach.
You can pick what roads you drive on but I dont think
it will avoid twisty mountain roads.

Google maps will show you the terrain of a route

BUT

It is still up to a human being to decide where and how they
want to go and see. We have driven many backroad highways
and found many interests.
If you are the type that just wants to get from point A to point B
as soon as possible, then maybe just enter in that you want only freeways.
I should have added to my initial response...pick up a Rand McNally travel atlas at a bookstore, dept. store, etc. even better would be the trucker's version. those maps will more easily show you the types of roads between here and there as well as the twisty, curvy routes than will a GPS.
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Old 06-11-2016, 08:33 PM   #6
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Wow, unless I read it wrong you are starting in a 45 footer. More nerve than I have - I'd suggest you stick to interstate freeways as much as possible. Look for sites that advertise big rig campgrounds. You'll get comfortable with it but you may be limited in some state & national parks because of the size. I hope you enjoy traveling as much as we do.
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Old 06-11-2016, 10:12 PM   #7
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OK I've just got yo ask. Does no one know how to read a map anymore??
Go to a truck stop and purchase a Rand McNally Motor Carrier Road Atlas
Get the enlarged version with the nice non paper pages and spiral bound
The road indicators are easy to read. All secondary roads that are traversable by trucks are marked in red.
Use this to plan your routes. The front contains low clearance by state as well as weight limited bridges.
Never ever depend on that voice in the box hiding behind a map. That GPS is only one tool and she WILL fail you. Anyone who depends on them deserves every dead end or one way street, every low clearance etc they get
Next download the Allstays Truck and Travel app. The filters will allow you to show all grades.
Do not allow your GPS to take you anywhere you aren't prepared for.
Exploring in your car is another matter and our GPS there is dependable.

I'm sure its the truckers daughter in me and I'll now cstep down from my soap box
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Old 06-12-2016, 05:31 AM   #8
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we purchased a rand McNally rv gps from good sam...........it is nice to use to assist in trip planning, but don't rely solely on it...........you have the ability to take their recommended directions and modify them, but the gps will not always follow the revised route you have chosen................I spoke to rand McNally about this and they told me that even though you change their recommended route to something you want, the gps will not send you on those roads due to legal issues..............they do not want to be responsible for you taking a revised route..............I use it to select the route I want, then print the directions...............you can follow those...........with the gps, we also use a paper map as indicated above..............and finally, use common sense........
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Old 06-12-2016, 07:12 AM   #9
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Good question and good advice. We traveled many years with paper maps and had lots of good trips

We're all different in our tastes in RV's and, in my eyes, a 45 footer is sort of like taking your house on the road. However, it sounds like you will have a great adventure . Just remember the advice of "Don't go anyplace where you can't see an exit" (ask me how I know...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nana25K View Post
OK I've just got to ask. Does no one know how to read a map anymore??
Go to a truck stop and purchase a Rand McNally Motor Carrier Road Atlas
Get the enlarged version with the nice non paper pages and spiral bound
The road indicators are easy to read. All secondary roads that are traversable by trucks are marked in red.
Use this to plan your routes. The front contains low clearance by state as well as weight limited bridges.
Never ever depend on that voice in the box hiding behind a map. That GPS is only one tool and she WILL fail you. Anyone who depends on them deserves every dead end or one way street, every low clearance etc they get
Next download the Allstays Truck and Travel app. The filters will allow you to show all grades.
Do not allow your GPS to take you anywhere you aren't prepared for.
Exploring in your car is another matter and our GPS there is dependable.

I'm sure its the truckers daughter in me and I'll now step down from my soap box
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Old 06-12-2016, 09:17 AM   #10
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You asked for an app and my recommendation would be the new RV specific CoPilot app. It's not perfect but I use it and it's pretty good if you also buy the $14.99 / year ActiveRoute and ActiveTraffic package. Glad to provide more specifics.
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Old 06-12-2016, 09:54 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nana25K View Post
OK I've just got yo ask. Does no one know how to read a map anymore??
Sure ... I can read a map - and pretty darn well at that. But, I much prefer to use an electronic one. The day I can grab the paper map I bought a couple of years ago from behind the chair - and know that it's been updated - I might change my mind. The day I can look at that paper map and have it flip over into the "satellite" view that I can get an aerial view of a specific area I'm concerned with seeing - I might change my mind.

I'm well aware of the fact that there may be times I may not be able to access the electronic maps I prefer ... however, during a recent trip to Florida that took us through 11 states and covered roughly 3,500 miles - that wasn't an issue.

It's a case of "to each their own" when it comes to whether or not they embrace technology. I'm a geezer and certainly remember the days when paper maps where my only option. But, the technology available today puts a more up to date, more versatile and arguably less expensive solution at my fingertips. I'm just not smitten with nostalgia for the "old days".
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Old 06-12-2016, 10:12 AM   #12
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I use a number of things (just 1 is insufficient). It also depends on where you are and where you are going.

1) GoodSam/Rand RV GPS.
2) Rand Large Scale Road Atlas.
3) The Mountain Directory.
4) Caltrans 45' Map (specific to California .. it's a download).
5) Local or state maps.
6) IRV2 advice.
7) Internet search for state laws concerning 45 ft. motorhomes.

At the very least, you need 1, 2, and 7. I never move the RV without matching the GPS data with a paper map.

and sometimes I do a search for altitude at points along the route ... gives me an idea of hills and mountains.
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Old 06-16-2016, 09:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nana25K View Post
OK I've just got yo ask. Does no one know how to read a map anymore??
Go to a truck stop and purchase a Rand McNally Motor Carrier Road Atlas
Get the enlarged version with the nice non paper pages and spiral bound
The road indicators are easy to read. All secondary roads that are traversable by trucks are marked in red.
Use this to plan your routes. The front contains low clearance by state as well as weight limited bridges.
Never ever depend on that voice in the box hiding behind a map. That GPS is only one tool and she WILL fail you. Anyone who depends on them deserves every dead end or one way street, every low clearance etc they get
Next download the Allstays Truck and Travel app. The filters will allow you to show all grades.)

Do not allow your GPS to take you anywhere you aren't prepared for.
Exploring in your car is another matter and our GPS there is dependable.

I'm sure its the truckers daughter in me and I'll now cstep down from my soap box
I agree about the Rand McNally Motor Carrier Road Atlas. We went to Florida last year and used it extensively. Never had to backup on a dead end. However, we did have to exit and turn around because the atlas said an Interstate road was ahead it just didn't say it was still 6 months from being built. It was started but the on ramp was finished to connect to the other interstate yet.
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Old 06-16-2016, 09:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cindysue View Post
We are motor homing in a 45 footer + toad for one year but only 2 months experience. We've ended up in too much traffic & narrow mountain roads & would like to avoid this. Any suggestions for apps, etc.?
Why on earth did you start with a 45'RV, with a towed?
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