Where to stop while towing Casita cross-country? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-26-2015, 10:47 AM   #15
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I would NOT recommend staying at a rest stop overnight, and most do not allow it anyway. Poor lighting and not so safe. A large truck plaza like Pilot, Jet, Loves, or Travel America are best to stop at. I always ask for permission and always get a it. I park at the outer edge of the lot, but still well lit. I get gas there too as a thank you as well. Some have restaurants too for breakfast the following morning. Full service towing products too!
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Old 10-26-2015, 10:53 AM   #16
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I agree with P@, use reflectix when camping in Walmart, Pilot, and the like, those sodium lights will light up the inside of your trailer like it is daytime. I also use an eye mask for daytime napping. I have a Walmart atlas (purchased from Amazon). Another helpful book is The Next Exit, which gives you lots information about what to find along the way about eateries and gas stations.

If you are a solo traveler like I am, it is hard to navigate and read the books so I familiarize myself with the next day's travel before bedding down for the night.

The first time I travelled cross-country I stayed at KOA Kampgrounds as they were convinient, safe and clean but pricey.
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Old 10-26-2015, 10:58 AM   #17
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Don't know where you will be travelling but this is what we have found so far. In Minnesota and Wisconsin there are city parks with water, dump and elect for about $15 a night. I haven't encountered them on the west coast, southwest or south. We have found camping at fairgrounds that runs about $25/night. If we are up north travelling with the trailer winterized, we stay at motels. They will generally have us park out back with other vehicles with trailers. A Good Sam's book can be of help. Your GPS is of huge help. We rely greatly on the computer suppose you have service. Just go to Google maps and zoom in on your area of interest. Type in campgrounds and see all the hits emerge. Zoom in and click on a campground, copy and paste to a search. You can get information, read reviews, get a phone number and make a choice that can easily be cancelled. For longer stays we prefer National Parks, National forest parks, Corps of Engineers parks, State parks and fairgrounds parks. RV parks have a much different atmosphere and there are few if any small campers at most all we have stayed in. We try to keep the travelling down to 250 miles a day or less. We pull at up to 70 mph if conditions are excellent but figure on an average travel time based on 45 - 50 mph or an average day of 4 - 6 hours or less.
Good luck with your travels and every day is an adventure. At the end of each day it is helpful to remember that the goal is to have fun and how is it measuring up?
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Old 10-26-2015, 11:07 AM   #18
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Casino's are another option. Some allow you to use the parking lot for free, others will change from $10 to $15 per night - some have power as well as a dump station. Some actually have a full hook up area but charge more for that. Some will also give you a voucher for a free breakfast.

Casino's also tend to have lots of security vs a highway rest stop or Walmart.

Not all Walmart's allow you to stay overnight in their lots. A good place to check is RV Parking in Walmart - Walmart Atlas.

Casinocamper.com has maps showing locations of casinos that allow camping and users information about them below the map.

Freecampsites.net is another handy website to use when looking for a spot that is free.
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Old 10-26-2015, 11:14 AM   #19
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We use the phone app: RV Parky. that works well for us. It will find state parks, federal lands, Walmarts etc. as well as commercial campgrounds. The app is free from the Apple APP store.
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Old 10-26-2015, 01:02 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by whoot View Post
Lots of good advice here, thanks for all the suggestions! Clearly, I need to PLAN my trip, more than I normally do. I also have a Garmin "RV GPS", which I better start learning how to use.
Planning = meeting schedules, meeting schedules = stress, stress = not relaxed and enjoying the trip. Meeting schedules = no side trips, no little know treasures to find.

I learned the pit falls of over planning a long time ago. Now our plan is go towards some place. Don't worry about when we get there, since the journey is the thing.
Worry about a place to sleep just doesn't happen in my world. I can always find a place to sleep.

Relax, no plans, just easy traveling with side trips and unplanned stops.
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Old 10-26-2015, 02:42 PM   #21
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Flying J truckstops have RV parking so you don't have to park with the big trucks....fuel up...have a meal and hit the sack.
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Old 10-26-2015, 03:22 PM   #22
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Two Other Things

It depends on what you need, but I find I want to stay at a full-hookup campground about every four or five days. The thing I like best for finding a decent campground is Passport America, which you need to purchase annually. All its member campgrounds are half off, which means you pay maybe $18 for a nice site.

The other thing, which I learned the hard way, is that if you're dry camping and it's cold, your furnace will drain your battery pretty fast, even though it's fueled by propane. Therefore, I'm staying where there's electric as long as it's cold. Right now I'm in Montana -- brrrrr!

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Old 10-26-2015, 03:35 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by WendyW View Post
It depends on what you need, but I find I want to stay at a full-hookup campground about every four or five days. The thing I like best for finding a decent campground is Passport America, which you need to purchase annually. All its member campgrounds are half off, which means you pay maybe $18 for a nice site.

The other thing, which I learned the hard way, is that if you're dry camping and it's cold, your furnace will drain your battery pretty fast, even though it's fueled by propane. Therefore, I'm staying where there's electric as long as it's cold. Right now I'm in Montana -- brrrrr!

WendyW
For the last 6 years we've averaged close to 120 nights per year. Average per night camping fees $7.50. Now how much do you pay for annual fees to Passport America?
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Old 10-26-2015, 03:42 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by WendyW View Post
It depends on what you need, but I find I want to stay at a full-hookup campground about every four or five days. The thing I like best for finding a decent campground is Passport America, which you need to purchase annually. All its member campgrounds are half off, which means you pay maybe $18 for a nice site.

The other thing, which I learned the hard way, is that if you're dry camping and it's cold, your furnace will drain your battery pretty fast, even though it's fueled by propane. Therefore, I'm staying where there's electric as long as it's cold. Right now I'm in Montana -- brrrrr!

WendyW
Let's look at some numbers. Furnace draws 3.5 amps while running. Even on coldest nights my furnace only runs about 10% of the time. Let's just double that for now. At 20% of the time over a 24 hour period that .48 hours. .48 hours time 3.5 amp = 1.68 amp hours. Typical Group 24 Marine battery is 74 amp hours meaning you 37 amp hours to play with. 37 amp hours/1.68 amp hours = 22 days.

I suggest that you have something else that sucking current from the battery. Most likely incandescent lights at 1.5 amp per light.
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Old 10-26-2015, 08:46 PM   #25
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I just returned from a trip from central Texas to CA and back. Many parks and National Monuments involved. Inbetween planned stops, we stayed at Walmarts. This was my first experience with being a Walmartian and it worked out great. I checked on my Rand-McNally GPS for local stores and only went to Super Centers. All of them welcomed overnighters, whereas a lot of the regular Walmart stores had notations that they did not. A few even had areas in the far-off corners that were specifically marked for over-night parking. They were well lit, had cameras and usually had several other RVs, trailers, truckers and even cars and trucks. My 86 yr old mother and I slept quite soundly. I followed the private parking etiquette addresses previously on this forum and checked in with the manager before settling in. Some snickered when I asked about overnighting, like it was a given, but most thanked me for asking.
Have a fun trip and be safe along the way!
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Old 10-26-2015, 08:52 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
Let's look at some numbers. Furnace draws 3.5 amps while running. Even on coldest nights my furnace only runs about 10% of the time. Let's just double that for now. At 20% of the time over a 24 hour period that .48 hours. .48 hours time 3.5 amp = 1.68 amp hours. Typical Group 24 Marine battery is 74 amp hours meaning you 37 amp hours to play with. 37 amp hours/1.68 amp hours = 22 days.

I suggest that you have something else that sucking current from the battery. Most likely incandescent lights at 1.5 amp per light.
20% of 24 hours is 4.8 hours.
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Old 10-26-2015, 08:56 PM   #27
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Moreover, as voltage drops, many lp furnaces are unable to restart due to low fan speed.
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Old 10-26-2015, 09:54 PM   #28
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Furnace a Drain on Battery?

I do need to understand what I should do, if anything, and I apologize for going off on this tangent. But after 2.5 days of dry camping and running the furnace once an hour at most, and not at all during the day, the furnace suddenly began CLANG CLANG CLANGing -- the fan was presumably losing power. I checked the battery charge immediately, and it was 40%. I have only LED lights, and I have only one on at a time. I was charging my iPhone and iPad a lot.

The next day I got fully charged at a campground and the day after that I took the rig to NAPA auto parts to see if the battery, the original Interstate that was stock with my 2014 Casita, was losing charge. It was not.

So now what? I'm full-timing solo, and if I should invest in another battery, I will. What say you all? Thanks!

WendyW
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