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Old 06-12-2021, 07:45 PM   #1
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This booking stuff is not what I expected

We are pretty new to this whole game, but it is really not easy to find a place!!!

We wanted Yellowstone area, but they are booked for near about a year in advance. who knew??

Then, we tried a small town rodeo, and the places are all booked up.

How is this game played?

Sheesh!!!
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Old 06-12-2021, 07:52 PM   #2
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A number of ways.....

Wait list, cancellations. Because people don't show. Or, have Solar and enough battery so you can boondock.

Harvest Hosts, Boondockers Welcome are other options.
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Old 06-12-2021, 07:59 PM   #3
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I'll be watching this thread. It's a new game, lots of people traveling, lots of new RV's sold.



In the past we seldom made reservations in advance, we traveled on the fly. But we weren't adverse to pulling into a Walmart if were just driving through. In 2009 we did a 3 1/2 month trip to Alaska, and seldom made reservations more then 2-3 days in advance, this included getting a spot in the inner campground in Denali. During the whole trip we probably only made 4-6 reservations.

No idea how it is now, haven't taken a long trip since late 2015 so I am out of touch with what is required now. But I'm getting ready to find out as I plan on taking a trip very soon.
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Old 06-13-2021, 12:08 AM   #4
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First off there are a lot of hard find campgrounds out there that are not easily searched for online. Finding these can help a lot using as many online tools as you can find, not everything is listed with google. Also there are still lots of places that don't accept reservations, or at least don't accept them online. Now this does not work everywhere, Yellowstone is a hard one, particularly in the prime summer travel months. Flexibility is key here, check out forest service campgrounds, COE, state parks, as well as commercial RV parks near your intended destination, if that does not work, cycle back through with alternative dates, and go from there..
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Old 06-13-2021, 04:54 AM   #5
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We always plan trips way in advance.
Bar Harbor/Acadia 2 yrs in advance.
43 ft RV and we usually stay at luxury resorts so it isn’t too hard.
If traveling, we travel midweek…easier to get a site off the interstates.
I almost never travel on Friday- Sunday except our last day to home.

We are heading to Glacier this summer, we leave on a Tuesday.
Heading home we leave on a Monday.
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Old 06-13-2021, 05:24 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Djfan View Post
We are pretty new to this whole game, but it is really not easy to find a place!!!

We wanted Yellowstone area, but they are booked for near about a year in advance. who knew??

Then, we tried a small town rodeo, and the places are all booked up.

How is this game played?

Sheesh!!!
National Parks -a year in advance
Holiday weekends - 6 months to a year in advance (for the more popular places)
Winter in FLORIDA - A year out of you want a monthly rate, 6 months out of you want a good Christmas or new years spot (a year out of you want both)
Spring and Fall are the easiest scheduling - unless you are following the leaves.
Activities,(rodeos, races etc.) book as soon as they are scheduled.
For weekends, early spring For summer camping. Weekdays you can usually get same day.
When traveling, start searching by noon for a place to stop for the evening (weekdays). Weekends, I'd have booked in advance.

For all of these, read the cancellation policies. If your schedule is flexible, sign up on wait lists. We are still ruled by our work schedule so can't just "wing" timing and destinations.

If you want more flexibility in your camping/traveling, start searching for more "off the beaten path" locations. They are out there and available, just harder to find.
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Old 06-13-2021, 07:26 AM   #7
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This is so disappointing, just taking off and finding a place to stay is impossible now. I hate to sound like an old f@rt, but we did it this way in the 80s and again in 2002. We just joined boondockers/harvest host and are hoping this might be a game changer. I want to decide on a direction monday and book thursday thru sunday. But maybe I am kidding myself.
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Old 06-13-2021, 07:54 AM   #8
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To avoid stress and disappointment I have decided that organized tours are the best way for me to travel to popular locations in order to maximize the experience. I know you still have to book in advance but once you are committed to a tour the hard part is done. I have a number of friends that have decided to go this route as well as we are getting older and waiting one to two years for a particular campsite to have availability is out of the question....at this stage of our lives "Time" is more valuable than money....just my personal opinion as I am sure many others will totally disagree......
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Old 06-13-2021, 08:00 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Djfan View Post
We are pretty new to this whole game, but it is really not easy to find a place!!!

We wanted Yellowstone area, but they are booked for near about a year in advance. who knew??

Then, we tried a small town rodeo, and the places are all booked up.

How is this game played?

Sheesh!!!
Finding a site is not that hard.

Go to places others don't want to go, and/or; at times others don't want to be there.

There are some added benefits to this. You might save some money; and other places won't be crowded.
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Old 06-13-2021, 09:35 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Djfan View Post
We are pretty new to this whole game, but it is really not easy to find a place!!!

We wanted Yellowstone area, but they are booked for near about a year in advance. who knew??

Then, we tried a small town rodeo, and the places are all booked up.

How is this game played?

Sheesh!!!
Frustrating Yes but you can learn to Play. -

First off - Boondocking is Key - NFS or Walmart - learn to ID and then be able to use - Genertor and Good Batteries are Key - solar can be a Bonus.

Second, in Wyoming, your home state, that is were Many tend to travel in season - look at many of the Options many have never heard of.

Your Reservoirs offer many great options.
Snowy Range is another great Option, many compare the area to RMNP.
Wind River Canyon, is another great spot.
Chief Joseph Highway.
Beartooth Highway
Dubois - Wind River Wilderness area - and entrance to the Tetons
On and On.................

Next travel out of season - Weather is Often great earlier and later than many plan to visit your great state, Our best rip to The Teatons and Yellowstone was one year late in October early November - just a few Visitors and Lots of Animals.

Last Summer, as we had all the kids, we did Yellowstone South to Taos - no Reservations and it was the Greatest trip Ever! Granted we had to scramble, three reservations is not easy, but we managed, rolled with the Punches and sometimes were miles outside were we wanted to be but we were there.

So go out Learn to Adapt - Boondock - Scramble - it can still be done and is Fun.

Few pictures to keep you motivated,

Images;
Tetons in November
Bear and Three Cubs in June of last year.
June 21st Old Faithful parking lot - empty and we set up for Dinner
Yellowstone last Summer just before pic above - Granted the park had just opened and RV'er were still trying to figure it all out - a week later we could not find a parking place.
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Old 06-13-2021, 10:14 AM   #11
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Let's just hope that this year is a "perfect storm" of RV travel -- the old days (2019) were not like this. Maybe by next year, a lot of newbies will have decided to go back to hotel travel??

Hang in there.
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Old 06-13-2021, 10:17 AM   #12
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If you want to go somewhere you can bet you’re not alone. Plan way ahead, go in the off season, go midweek. Stay further away from the main attraction and use your toad to visit where you want to go (if appropriate). Our state parks allow you to book 13 months in advance but even then the high traffic areas (can we say beach) still fill up quickly. The main issue with booking, especially way in advance, is be careful with cancelation policies. Some CG’s don’t issue refunds instead will give you a future stay credit.
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Old 06-13-2021, 10:24 AM   #13
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Let's just hope that this year is a "perfect storm" of RV travel -- the old days (2019) were not like this. Maybe by next year, a lot of newbies will have decided to go back to hotel travel??

Hang in there.
Really think it will likely be the Oposite - Many, while this is New - are going to LOVE IT - and if they get out of the Car or Truck and touch it - Feel it - - they are going to Really Love it.

My two son's are like salt and pepper - polar oposites - while the Coloroado one is a hiker camper - the Maryland one quickly found He Loved it, and has rented a couple times sence our trip last summer.

So I'm in the Camp of things are changing, at least in Prime time!

But ProfDan - think you are safe - few can dive in like you do - it's the rest of us Older Folks that are in trouble - BUT - most of us have a pretty good Workaround. -

JMHO,
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