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Old 06-21-2015, 12:11 AM   #1
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Holiday Rambler Owners Club
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Recommendation must see/must know off I-10 Alabama to Cali?

Hi Everyone. We just got a 2002 Holiday Rambler. We are very familiar with the lifestyle and are working out the kinks in the "new" rig - our first class A. We've done this trip by car and by boat...but not yet by RV....does anyone have any recommendations as to any must sees or things we must know about travelling the I-10 from Pensacola to California? We are looking for great Natural Wonders or any specific cultural or community events going on about now. Or, anything we need to know about the roads, rules or best stops along the way? we have all the Allstays apps and decent internet. But any inside scoop would be appreciated. We are looking to stay for free in rest stops or walmarts...saving the campground fees for only the absolute musts! done this trip and we don't have a lot of time this time around..so we are trying to get the most out of it we can while sticking to a budget. THANKS for anything you can offer!
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:45 AM   #2
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With your second post,

And congrats on the new to you coach and safe travels.

Just a little confused...is there limited time, or can you enjoy some sightseeing along the way?
If the later...one of the most dramatic places we have ever visited, (that is just north of
I-10) is Carlsbad Caverns.

We were on the 10 from Dallas to San Diego in July (read: Stupid Hot) and the caverns were a welcome cool spot to spend much of the day from the endless SouthWestern heat.

If you don't like caves, maybe not a good spot to stop...be we love to see these amazing natural wonders. If you spend the night before or after visiting, avoid staying near the Caverns. The campgrounds close were overpriced due to the tourist market nearby.

To keep costs down, research is the key...like asking specific questions here on iRV2 about free camping in specific areas and searching the web like here: http://freecampsites.net/usa/
We're not affiliated, just think the website has good info.

And about the trip...I would be sure to do a very complete check of the RV's cooling system, and dash and rooftop aircon units before the trip. We did the entire July trip with all 3 aircon units running almost nonstop...using generator power while on the road. And even with good aircon systems, there were times during the day when the coach was still only being cooled to about 85*.

Best luck
Kim and Steve, Mustang LCDR (USCG Ret), Outlaw #1193
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Old 06-21-2015, 03:52 AM   #3
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We are still new at this but we have traveled I 10 many times from fl to Texas not much to see but east Texas is pretty but after that flat ugly and boring.
I would believe I 20 and or maybe jump up to I 40 would take you through central US I 40 would go to Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta in October. (we're going )

Just these few suggestions. ...make it a good trip and have a good time.
Jerry & CP Joyce
2005 Fleetwood Bounder 35E 8.1 workhorse ( Pretty Penny )
Getting lost every chance we get.
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Old 06-21-2015, 04:53 AM   #4
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We really liked the KOA in Las Cruces.

Las Cruces KOA | Camping in New Mexico | KOA Campgrounds

Lots of things to do in/near Las Cruces too.

The Pima Air Museum in Tuscon is one of the best I have seen.

Pima Air & Space Museum : Tucson, Arizona

In Junction, TX, we stayed at the Junction North Llano River RV Park and like it a lot.

Junction North Llano River RV Park

Junction is in Texas Hill country and there is lots to see and do.

Texas Hill Country

If you want to get off of I-10 a little, Carlsbad Caverns isn't that far off line.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park (U.S. National Park Service)

From the eastern most Texas city on I-10, it is further to New Mexico than it is to Jacksonville, FL. From the western most city in Texas along I-10, it is further across Texas than it is to San Diego, CA.
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Old 06-21-2015, 06:24 AM   #5
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A little "off beat", but Avery Island, think Tabasco Sauce, and Jefferson Island and great visits. Avery is where all Tabasco Sauce is bottled and the McElhaney family developed a nature loop drive. Lots of beautiful plants in an informal setting and a bird sanctuary.

Jefferson Island has a southern mansion and more formal gardens and grounds.

Both islands are salt domes, rising out of the marsh land.

There is a casino about 30 miles east with full hookup sites for under $20/night.

Steve Ownby
Full time since '07
Steve Ownby
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Old 06-21-2015, 08:15 AM   #6
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Roll Tide!!
The most boring drive in the world! Hot. Have fun.
Carlsbad caverns
I am curious how you did this trip by boat?
1992 Bounder 28T, Chevy 454, Yak Rak
2001 tacoma 4x4 TOAD
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Old 06-21-2015, 09:07 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by tlynt View Post
We are looking to stay for free in rest stops or walmarts...saving the campground fees for only the absolute musts!
Keep in mind that comfortable boondocking in hot weather will require running the generator in order to run your air conditioners. You may find that a modestly priced campground will cost you less than the gas for the gennie overnight.

That's often been our experience, at least when gas and diesel is over $3.50/gal.

We like to use the Ultimate Public Campground app to find all the COE, state, county and municipal campgrounds that don't show up in the campground guides.

A new one we like for oddball campgrounds is Campscout
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:33 PM   #8
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If you miss Carlsbad then definitely stop at Benson, AZ for Kartchner Caverns State Park. It has a very nice campground and the cave tours are awesome. It's completely different from Carlsbad in that Kartchner is still a growing cave, meaning the formations drip. The lighting is gorgeous on the formations.

There are other things to do around Benson such as Tombstone and Bisbee - do the mine tour.

Have a good trip.
Full-timed for 16 Years . . .
Traveled 8 yr in a 2004 Newmar Dutch Star 40' Diesel
& 8 yr in a 33' Travel Supreme 5th wheel
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:37 PM   #9
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Did Rock Hound State Park in New Mexico 2 years ago on way West. Early AM and Pm views were greater . Did some short hikes due to short stay and due to wind direction all the dust was on the leeward side on the mountain.
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Old 06-21-2015, 01:42 PM   #10
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You may know that the naval air museum at Pensacola is world class.
Passport America may serve your needs with their 50% discount. Gulf Coast RV Resort at Beaumont, TX is a much better than average full hookup find at $20/night.
The Rex Allen and ranch brand museum in Willcox, AZ is low key and different. We enjoyed the mining town of Bisbee, AZ which had become somewhat artsy a few years ago. Bisbee is about 55 miles south of I-10. Chiricahua NM and Cochise Stronghold are in rugged pinion pine country and rich in history. In Tucson, there are many museums of all types-art, cars, aircraft, toy trains, native american, etc.. The Sonoran Desert museum is also botanical, aquarium and zoo. Yuma, off I-8 if you are including San Diego in your tour, has several small historical museums.
Have fun. Safe travels.
Fred & Mary RVM135
2012 Dutch Star 3735 ISL 400
2012 GMC Sierra Ext Cab 4x4
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Old 06-21-2015, 06:58 PM   #11
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Being an aviation person, Pensacola, Alamogordo (if you have time, as it means paralleling the 10 between Sweetwater and Las Cruces), and Pima are definite must-see locations.

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Old 06-21-2015, 07:01 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by SteveLevin View Post
Being an aviation person, Pensacola, Alamogordo (if you have time, as it means paralleling the 10 between Sweetwater and Las Cruces), and Pima are definite must-see locations.

Just to clarify a little....Pima is a great place in Tucson, AZ.
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