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Old 01-26-2021, 08:18 AM   #1
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First Trip--Rest Area Locations?

Newbie picking up new trailer in a couple of weeks. However, the trailer is in Shipshewana, In, and I am in Tampa Bay Florida area, which is approximately 1,200 miles away.

Bought from Wana RV because it was in stock and to save thousands.

So, my first trip will be to drive up there to pick it up and turn around to come home to outfit it. Ideally, I would want to stay in the area to tour around. Unfortunately this southern boy (well, I was many, many, years ago) doesn't like the cold, and to stay up there, we would have to take everything we need to put in the trailer.

That said, I know from reading the forum about apps to find camp sites, but I was wondering if there are any apps or publications that show Rest Areas. The only stopping we will be doing coming home will be at Rest Areas.

Thanks
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Old 01-26-2021, 08:31 AM   #2
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Are you planning to drive straight through? You normally cannot stay overnight in a Rest Area, also, northern campgrounds are generally closed in winter.
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Old 01-26-2021, 08:31 AM   #3
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All Stays app shows it all. Walmart, rest areas, Cracker Barrels, etc. Well worth the $10 to download.
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Old 01-26-2021, 08:38 AM   #4
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A Garmin GPS will allow you to search for rest areas. I use that feature all the time when traveling.
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Old 01-26-2021, 08:41 AM   #5
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Plan to drive straight through on the return trip.

Some Rest Areas allow overnight stays, some don't.

The return trip is going to take longer not only because I will be towing the trailer, but because I will be towing with a new truck that I had to buy to tow with, and below is the recommendation for towing with a new truck:


"Do not exceed 50 mph during your first 500 miles of towing. This should be observed whether you truck has 2,000 miles on it or 20,000. Stay at speeds between 40 and 50 mph to prevent long-term damage."


So, for the first 500 miles, I am not suppose to go over 50 mph. This will add more time for the return.
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Old 01-26-2021, 09:25 AM   #6
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The Apple App Store has a Rest Area app. Android probably has one too.
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Old 01-26-2021, 09:32 AM   #7
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iExit is the app I've found that is the best when it comes to finding rest areas along a route. Android and Apple versions available.
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Old 01-26-2021, 09:41 AM   #8
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….easy--about every 60 miles on the interstate system, give or take....
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Old 01-26-2021, 09:50 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Texsinbad View Post
Some Rest Areas allow overnight stays, some don't.
When I picked up my van in the Dallas area, there was a rest area on the way north that actually had RV parking spots with crushed stone 'parallel parking' along a driveway of sorts around the back. Obviously intended for overnighting. There's also a rest area in NC that has RV parking slots where I and many others overnighted. It was a separate area from cars and trucks.

As a general rule, if using Walmart lots, or Cracker Barrel's RV spots, or any rest area, don't put out slides, or chairs, or awnings, levelling jacks, or anything to make it look like you're moving in. And it's best to ask the manager if it's ok to get some sleep in their lot - many WM's don't allow overnights, for instance, presumably due to local (town/city) restrictions.
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Old 01-26-2021, 09:54 AM   #10
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We use an android app specifically to find rest stops. Look in the app store and check reviews. Chuck
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Old 01-26-2021, 10:08 AM   #11
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I use RV Parky to plan trips (RVPARKY.com). Web based tool is free. Will show rest areas, gas stations, low clearance spots, RV camp grounds both commercial and government. Most camp grounds have reviews. App provides phone numbers and web site links.

After planning a route, I export a GPX file that gets loaded to my Garmin GPS.
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Old 01-26-2021, 10:56 AM   #12
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if you use waze, search rest area once your route is in and press add a stop on the rest areas you want to stop at
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Old 01-26-2021, 11:10 AM   #13
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Make sure everything in the trailer works BEFORE you leave. Plan to spend a lot of time doing this.

You also need to watch the weather closely all the way to Florida. Winter in IN can be nasty. There were tornadoes in AL yesterday.
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Old 01-26-2021, 12:15 PM   #14
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Appreciate everyone's experiences are different depending where you travel but .....

We've overnighted in tons of Rest Stops over the years. In Wyoming was the first place we came across posted signage of "no overnight camping". Police happened to be there when we'd stopped and we asked and they said "absolutely stay overnight, we'd rather that than you driving tired and having an accident. We have the signage there for leverage to get rid of long termers/undesireables".

We've never been turfed out of a Rest Area in over 20 years RVing and we've stayed in a lot of them, sometimes for a handful of hours (3am to 8amish) and sometimes more lately for 12+ hours, when stopping a little earlier and leaving a little later the next morning. Yes, more today have signage of no overnight camping, but unless it's in a really high tourist attraction area, they tend to be to discourage/enforce on folks setting up "camp" rather than an odd O/N stay during travels.

FWIW: Besides using Allstays, Campendium, Ioverlander, Freecampsites.net and RVParky, I have in the past googled Rest areas for a particular state or Hwy and have found links to them. Haven't used WAZE so good to know that can list them as stops for you = Thanks Gatorb8

If you are travelling in freezing weather, be sure to carry some water on board for personal use rather than fill tank, and maybe some antifreeze for down the john and sinks. That's what we do when we are travelling in the frigid North here on rare occasions, until we hit warmer climes and then we fill and drain our tanks, and flush our pipes/washer etc.
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