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-   -   Overnight along I-70 in Indiana (https://www.irv2.com/forums/f258/overnight-along-i-70-in-indiana-469562.html)

Vibeman 11-20-2019 06:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by daveandcarol (Post 5045058)
My copy of Next Exit shows a Cracker Barrel at Exit 7 (Terre Haute) as being RV-friendly. A quick Google Maps search would confirm approaches and access. They usually tend to be OK with overnight stays, some have dedicated RV/bus parking areas. And the food is usually OK too. I agree that 500 miles is too long for one day's drive (specially in an unfamiliar vehicle) without a really pressing reason.
Don't forget Neimerg's in Effingham when you are at Camp Lakewood (although I'm not sure about getting an RV in their parking lot). Are you pulling a car?

Thanks daveandcarol, we will check out that Cracker Barrel. As of now, Terre Haute area is where I think we will spend the first night.

Vibeman 11-20-2019 06:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by daveandcarol (Post 5045119)
Mid-Michigan to Terre Haute is still quite a trip. Another possibility: there are 2 Pilot gas stations at Exit 234 and a KOA not too far away. From the KOA to Effingham is about 200 miles.
I wish I could recommend a campground in the Indianapolis area but some I've stayed in just aren't that nice...

Google maps says Terre Haute is 430 miles from us. I agree it may be an optimistic one day destination, but we plan on an early start and I definitely want to get around Indy that first day. One reason we chose a class A motor home over a fifth wheel is the convenience and flexibility of driving across country from our living room easy chairs! I think it will make on the road overnight stays much easier.

photraveller 11-20-2019 06:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iowaone (Post 5044536)
When we lived in North Eastern Iowa and headed south in January we always tried to go directly south to get to warmer weather then East or west. We also tried to have a couple of possible routes and dates in mind to avoid incoming storms or cold fronts. Anymore you can get a fair idea of incoming storms starting a week or two in advance of their arrival to central US. You then can start fine tuning final driving plans. You do not want to be driving during a winter storm.

Very good point for this time of the year!

In the Op's case (and mine) I-65 south through Kentucky and/or Tenn is our good alternate route.

Staying on the front side of a winter storm is the way to go. Many times, you can go south through Indiana just fine (rain or dry), while the storm is in white out mode in southern to central Illinois.

Which leads to the next obvious thing to watch out for. I really try to not only stay off snowy roads, but also salted roads. I don't feel like our RVs are setup up for a salt bath like our cars. Sure it won't bother the paint, but I've been shocked by rust on chassis components that have been exposed to salt.

Steve

foundwaldo 11-20-2019 06:18 AM

My very first trip ever was from St. Louis to Niagara falls. I drove 568 miles the first day, I needed to make it to niargara by a certain time to pick up the rental because of a holiday. Anyway I was very tired and stressed out. Also not being familiar with the rig added to it. I had a want to make it here route, but also just said we will wing it. I decided to stop at a rest area.

I found the rest area to be to loud and a lot of traffic. After taking a short nap got back up and drove another 25 miles to a flying j and slept a few more hours. I was much more comfortable there and the rest of the trip I stayed at flying J's when I was not at a campground.

Just a tip anywhere you stop be considerate of others with regards to your slides. I never put out my slides when I was just staying overnight. I had a guy next to me at the flying j that was there when I got there at 8 pm and still there when I left around 7 am the next morning and taken 2 full spots so he could put his slides out. He also had all his jacks down, so it was like he was camping. I ran my genie because I needed the air conditioner, so I don't think that is a big deal. Remember when you are just overnight in a parking lot do as little setup as possible. I followed through philosophy of it is parked not camped.

Understand that when it says 8 hours 30 minutes it was actually like 12 for me because of time zones and stopping for breaks also speed is less in an RV.

Enjoy the trip you will have good times and bad times.

Vibeman 11-20-2019 07:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by photraveller (Post 5045284)
Very good point for this time of the year!

In the Op's case (and mine) I-65 south through Kentucky and/or Tenn is our good alternate route.

Staying on the front side of a winter storm is the way to go. Many times, you can go south through Indiana just fine (rain or dry), while the storm is in white out mode in southern to central Illinois.

Which leads to the next obvious thing to watch out for. I really try to not only stay off snowy roads, but also salted roads. I don't feel like our RVs are setup up for a salt bath like our cars. Sure it won't bother the paint, but I've been shocked by rust on chassis components that have been exposed to salt.

Steve

I am with you 100% on the salt issue. I also don't want to drive my RV on snowy/slippery roads. The first time I hauled my Harley down to Texas was on an open trailer. It was black when I left home and white by the time I got to Missouri! The residual salt will still kick up somewhat when roads are dry but if they are wet it will coat everything in brine! All that being said, I am still driving the motor home to Texas this January, I will just adjust my departure to try to avoid or minimize wet roads the first day or two.

mike625 11-20-2019 07:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vibeman (Post 5045334)
I am with you 100% on the salt issue. I also don't want to drive my RV on snowy/slippery roads. The first time I hauled my Harley down to Texas was on an open trailer. It was black when I left home and white by the time I got to Missouri! The residual salt will still kick up somewhat when roads are dry but if they are wet it will coat everything in brine! All that being said, I am still driving the motor home to Texas this January, I will just adjust my departure to try to avoid or minimize wet roads the first day or two.

Just an FYI - Most Blue Beacon truck washes have under body cleaning with Saltaway - I've always plan to stop there or also carry some myself with a sprayer if needed just in case the weather throws me a curve ball.

Vibeman 11-20-2019 08:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike625 (Post 5045381)
Just an FYI - Most Blue Beacon truck washes have under body cleaning with Saltaway - I've always plan to stop there or also carry some myself with a sprayer if needed just in case the weather throws me a curve ball.

Thanks, I never heard of Blue Beacon but I will check them out.

Vibeman 11-20-2019 08:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vibeman (Post 5045277)
Thanks daveandcarol, we will check out that Cracker Barrel. As of now, Terre Haute area is where I think we will spend the first night.

I missed your last question earlier. No, we are not towing anything this trip.

foundwaldo 11-20-2019 06:54 PM

Oh be aware Missouri actually uses a combination of beer juice with it's salt. That is probably why things get dirtier.

CoachC 11-20-2019 07:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vibeman (Post 5044089)
Hi everyone,
My wife and I just got our first motor home, a class A, and will be driving it to south Texas in January, we live in Michigan's "thumb". Due to our late season purchase and cold and snow here in Michigan we have so far been unable to take a practice overnight run so this may end up being our maiden voyage! :eek:
The first day we plan to take I-69 to Indianapolis then west on I-70 toward Effingham IL. The next day we will go south on I-57 and I-55 headed toward Little Rock AK. We have driven this route many times in our car so we are familiar with it but would like to hear from other RV'ers who are also familiar with this route and could suggest overnight parking locations along the way. We do not plan to de-winterize the rig when we leave, so for at least the first two nights we will be 'dry camping".
Effingham IL is 500 miles from our home and would probably be the absolute furthest we would want to drive the first day. Ideally we would want to stop a little sooner, somewhere around Terre Haute IN. We just want a spot to stop and put out the slide, fire up the furnace and get some sleep and hit the road early again the next morning. Then repeat this for a couple more days until we get far enough south to stop in a park, de-winterize, and fill up the fresh water tank. I am thinking rest areas, Walmarts, Cracker Barrels, etc. Any and all thoughts/suggestions would be appreciated, thank you.
-Ken

Last year our 1st stop out of Michigan was at the KOA in Terre Haute. Scheduled stay for 2 nights to de-winterize the coach. That went well but when were were to depart the starter on our motorhome went south...without us:banghead:
Ended up at that KOA for a total of 8 nights until we were able to get towed to the VoMack shop in town and get a new starter. Unfortunately our original departure schedule was departing on December 30. With the New Year holiday weekend coming up getting a tow company and finding the shop were the challenge. Thus an 8 day stay.
The KOA worked great for us though. No issues there. At least we were in a spot with full hook-ups so the long stay was not a problem.
Looks to me like you're doing some good planning wherever you end up.
Best of luck and enjoy the journey!:thumb:

Cheers

PKI 11-20-2019 08:12 PM

You have had good advice and seem to be pulling together a plan. Good on you.

One thought - FHU to FHU to FHU allows you to have a backup for something not working. Bathroom, shower, electric ..... batteries don't charge, you have shore power ...... too cold, you can plug in a space heater (you have one, right?) ..... and you can put all slides out in a FHU.

Now, it's hard to want to spend money for a campground when you only need a place to sleep. If all goes well, you have the ability to dry camp at will. The question is, will it all go well. Maybe make two plans. One with FHU and one with the free stay alternatives. You always need backups to the plan anyway.

Caution - do not extend slide until you look up down and all around. Some grassy areas have trees. Others have your neighbor's slide.

Caution - slides sometimes fail to retract - putting out the slides might be something to defer if you are someplace that you might want to leave in a hurry. Staying in cities with mobile RV service is a good strategy.

Caution - whatever you plan, be willing to adjust the schedule if your travel conditions become unsafe. The point is to have fun and enjoy the adventure.

Hope to meet you down the road someday with a smile on your face. :) Pat

Cudntherd 11-20-2019 09:23 PM

When planning a trip I often Google and use Truck Master Fuel finder. It has fuel locations, rest areas and places to stay overnight.

Good luck and Safe travels.

Ray,IN 11-20-2019 10:21 PM

Terre Haute Indiana, at the junction of I 70 & US 41N, there is a cracker Barrel , 429 E Margaret Dr, Terre Haute, IN 47802, with RV parking.

Google maps satellite view will show you an accurate view of the area.
We have over-nighted there several times, each time I ask the manager for permission, and was invited to overnight and have dinner and breakfast.(it's a courtesy gesture, even though unnecessary)

There is a WalMart about 1 mile North of the intersection of I 70 and IN 46 intersection; I've never stopped there, over-night parking must be OK because Google map shows semi's parked there. Again, Google maps is a great aid for seeing it before you arrive. As you've already guessed, I live close by.
This weather and road conditions website should be quite helpful, even though it is originally designed for Western states.


AFTERTHOUGHT: There is ongoing heavy interstate construction(I 465/I 69) on the East side of Indy, plan for delays/heavy traffic near that intersection. You will be going straight West so watch for signage to stay on I 70.

Vibeman 11-21-2019 04:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PKI (Post 5046303)
You have had good advice and seem to be pulling together a plan. Good on you.

One thought - FHU to FHU to FHU allows you to have a backup for something not working. Bathroom, shower, electric ..... batteries don't charge, you have shore power ...... too cold, you can plug in a space heater (you have one, right?) ..... and you can put all slides out in a FHU.

Now, it's hard to want to spend money for a campground when you only need a place to sleep. If all goes well, you have the ability to dry camp at will. The question is, will it all go well. Maybe make two plans. One with FHU and one with the free stay alternatives. You always need backups to the plan anyway.

Caution - do not extend slide until you look up down and all around. Some grassy areas have trees. Others have your neighbor's slide.

Caution - slides sometimes fail to retract - putting out the slides might be something to defer if you are someplace that you might want to leave in a hurry. Staying in cities with mobile RV service is a good strategy.

Caution - whatever you plan, be willing to adjust the schedule if your travel conditions become unsafe. The point is to have fun and enjoy the adventure.

Hope to meet you down the road someday with a smile on your face. :) Pat

Great suggestions, thanks Pat. I have been practicing with "dry camping" in our driveway: running furnace and inverter on battery power, auto generator start, extending/retracting slide, getting used to various systems and equipment. We do not have a fold-up bed so we can spend a night without extending the slide, probably a good idea if we are in a parking lot or rest area as you suggest. We have a 1500w space heater on order, but of course would only work on shore power or generator.
I like to have backup plans too.:thumb:


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