How many miles/hours of road time a day for you? - Fiberglass RV

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Old 05-14-2014, 08:23 AM   #1
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Name: Tim
Trailer: '88 Scamp 16, layout 4
North Florida
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How many miles/hours of road time a day for you?

It is generally not my thing to travel much by car/truck. I just don’t like driving. The kid and I flew out west (Idaho) a couple of summers ago to visit family and I rented a car for the two weeks. We did a week long jaunt over to Yellowstone, Cody WY, etc. and back (to Idaho). I tried to keep the road time to between 3 ½ and 4 hours a day, numbers that I pulled out of the air but sounded good. It worked well as that is about all I wanted to drive, the kid was able to stand it (without driving me any crazier), and we had time to stop and sight see, grab a bite, and enjoy the trip.
Now I have a new to me old Scamp and am planning trips with it. At least initially I am still going to try and keep my road time in the 3 ½ to 4 hour a day range. I will be on “vacation” and don’t want to be rushed. I do not want to have to get up and on the road at sunrise but still want to get to camp plenty early to set up and explore a little before dinner. Obviously, this entails intermediate, overnight stops along the way to anywhere very far off from the homestead. This has not been a problem so far with even a little planning. Anyway, I am just curious how others go about planning trips.

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Old 05-14-2014, 08:48 AM   #2
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I agree that when you are on vacation keep the driving hours as short as you can, but this of course depends on how long your vacation is and the distance to your destination.
I often drive a long 8-12 hours on the first day just to get well on the trip leaving very early in the morning (usually about 4 a.m.). After that first day I go into vacation mode and try to keep the daily drives to 3-4 hours with at least a 2 night stop at one location every second day.

As an example of this we are going to the Oregon Gathering in July, I will drive from Calgary to the Chilliwack area on the first day (550 miles), then take 5 days to drive to Bullards beach Oregon following the coast (5 days to travel about 750 miles)

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Old 05-14-2014, 08:52 AM   #3
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Name: jim
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Normally no more than 6 hours, particularly with dogs. That said, sometimes for those 1500 mile trips, we will do 12 the first day and then 6 the second day and arrive on 3rd day.
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Old 05-14-2014, 09:17 AM   #4
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A lot depends on where I am heading and for how long.

If I am heading someplace for example that is normally an 8 hour drive and going to be staying there for the whole trip I will do it in one day. Taking short rest stop every couple of hours to stretch my legs. I have also been known to do 12 hours of driving or more ( my longest day was 16 hours once) if I am trying to get out of a bad weather area or I *need* to be someplace by such and such a date. I might also do that there is not anywhere I really want to stay along that route or if it means I get to stay more than 1 night in a location. I am not a big fan of doing the one night only stop overs in campgrounds.

In my perfect world I much prefer to do only about 4-5 hours of driving a day and stay more than 1 night in each location.

Having traveled with children and dogs in the past I found that the longer I pushing the driving time over 4 hours the more the level of enjoyment of the drive declined due to the unhappiness of my passengers. How unhappy the 2 and 4 legged passengers where depended greatly on the age of each. ;-)
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Old 05-14-2014, 09:24 AM   #5
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I agree with Carol. I can and have done the 10-12 hour driving days. But I find I am then wiped out. So, I try to schedule myself and keep it under 5 hours a day. Even when not bringing the trailer, I feel better the end of the day if I don't go much over 5 hours. I make the trip from Utah to CA at least once a month. It's a 11 hour trip. I find a stopover in the middle makes me a happier camper!
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Old 05-14-2014, 10:29 AM   #6
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Trailer: 2011 Escape 17B
Oswego, NY
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Ido my best to stay under 150 miles per day. While I usually manage, if I'm on the interstates, I may go a bit further. That works out to 3-4 hours of driving. Of course I have the advantage that I'm retired, and don't have a schedule, so I can spend as much time as I need to get where I'm going. Back when I was working, the drive times were much longer...
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Old 05-14-2014, 10:38 AM   #7
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I think it depends on your tolerance for driving and your comfort with your rig.
When we have taken a car trip we would leave really early (like 4-am) then stop for breakfast around 8, that felt like progress and a fresh start.

With the Scamp, we found it works best to leave in the late afternoon or early evening , then stop late at a Walmart or rest area.
This works on so many levels....
1] All the last minute packing and hassles are behind us.
2]We have 2-3 hundred miles behind us before we really get started the next morning.
3] It's usually an earlier start to a nice full day of travel.
4] We get an extra night in our Scamp which makes for an extended "Vacation"
5] If we have a destination, this usually results in an early arrival, often right at check-in!
6] The early arrival means we can fully set up camp upon arrival, so the next day is all adventure with less prep.

The big thing is RELAX, and don't let yourself feel rushed. Don't push your comfort level. Hurrying almost never results in any real time savings anyway.
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Old 05-14-2014, 10:49 AM   #8
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Living in Los Angeles area I am a crack of dawn get out of dodge person. leaving at 5:00 am gets me out of town in an hour and a half with little traffic. Waiting until civilization also wakes up then that time in miserable traffic can double. I never want to start off a trip on a bad note and behind the curve. After that I like to arrive someplace by 2:00 pm. If I am dealing with holiday weekends I like to leave the night before and drive at night before all the rush out of towners hit the roads. I am not retired so I have to schedule around the crazies as best as I can. Towing a trailer in I want to get someplace traffic out here sucks.
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Old 05-14-2014, 11:10 AM   #9
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We leave when we leave. My wife and I switch driving duties when one of us gets tired. I love to drive all night long. There is not much traffic, and the kids are quiet, (asleep). When both of us are tired, we find a rest stop, put most of the kids in the trailer, and my wife and I sleep in the van, with the youngest kid. If we are not in a rush, then about 500 miles a day, if we are looking to get home, maybe 1000 miles a day.
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Old 05-14-2014, 12:44 PM   #10
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I have finite amounts of time for trips since I still have to show up at the salt mines regularly, so if say the destination is Florida, we're going to bust out 16 hours of driving to get there from Philadelphia in a day and change.

Often what we're doing is a day or two drive to then be based in one spot for anywhere from 4 - 10 days.

My longest solo drive with the trailer was about 950 miles. Boy was I pooped at the end of that day! Basically went from Custer, SD to Pittsburgh in less than two full days. not the most enjoyable thing after hour nine or so, but had to avoid without sticking super close to home for vacation.

It's hard to drive halfway across north america in one fell swoop, at trailer-towing speeds.
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Old 05-14-2014, 12:47 PM   #11
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I drive about 300 miles a day. NO RUSH
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Old 05-14-2014, 01:26 PM   #12
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I typically like to restrict my towing to less than about 4hrs per day or 400 miles, whichever goes by quicker. However, we do occasionally have longer days with more miles.
Dave W - 2013 Escape 19' and 2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser

"You've got to be very careful if you don't know where you are going, because you might not get there." - Yogi Berra
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Old 05-14-2014, 03:00 PM   #13
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MA to CA and back in 90 days & 12,000 miles

This past Jan-Mar, we drove from MA down the east coast, across GA & FL panhandle, to TX and around its southern border, through NM & AZ into so CA, and back. We drove 200-300 miles every other day and spent a minimum of two nights at each stop. We drove 55 mph, so most driving days were 5 to 7 hours, including stops. If distances are similar, we try to avoid interstates and find that more interesting and less wearing. We usually left before 9am and got into our next stop early enough to set up and take a walk or bike ride to check out the campground area, usually a state park. On the second day, we did a variety of touristy things.

We spent more time in TX, AZ, & CA, staying a week or so in single campgrounds while we visited those areas. Of the 12,000 miles, at least 25% was without the Scamp. On the last leg of the drive home, the late-March weather was still iffy in the northeast, so we put in a couple longer days, just to get home without any snow. When planning to drive longer days, we often use Walmarts or rest areas where we plan to stay hooked up and don't care about having daylight to set up camp. Otherwise we felt the drive a day/stay two nights, worked well for us.
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Old 05-14-2014, 09:58 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Timber Wolf View Post
It is generally not my thing to travel much by car/truck. I just don’t like driving.

... Anyway, I am just curious how others go about planning trips.
I actually Love driving. Growing up vacations meant 3 days in a car to get from Home (Oneida, New York) to my grandparent's farm (Lookeba, Oklahoma).

Since I am still working for a small company, I am limited to vacations of 2 weeks (16 consecutive days) at any one time. I once started in San Diego and drove cross-country to Oneida, New York (east of Syracuse), stayed for 2 days, then drove cross-country to The Oregon Gathering in Bandon Oregon, stayed for 2 days, then drove home to San Diego, all within 16 days total. I got up to 75 miles per hour towing, and pulled a couple of 20 hour days on that trip. I learned what NOT to do on a "vacation."

I find that I cannot get far enough down the road in the limited time I have available if I don't do 8 hours behind the wheel per travel day. Since I now set the cruise control for 55 miles per hour when towing, I usually plan on 400 miles per day in those 8 (or so) hours. Recently I've found that 450 miles is the absolute maximum I can do in one stretch.

Frederick - The Scaleman
1978 Fiber Stream 16 named "Eggstasy" & 1971 Compact Jr. named "Boomerang"
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