Questions from a Wannabe Snowbird to the SouthEast - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-26-2016, 11:20 AM   #1
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Questions from a Wannabe Snowbird to the SouthEast

First of all, Is it to late to be making reservations in January for the February time frame?

Second, Is it difficult to move around every 3-5 days once there or are you tied into one place to ensure you have or can get other reservations.

Third, Is there more availability at National/State Forest Parks than Independent RV Parks?

Fourth, Is it difficult to get into the Military Campgrounds because of permitted homesteading rules.

Would appreciate any Advice/Recommendations/Favorite Destinations.

Dan
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Old 12-26-2016, 11:37 AM   #2
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Dan,

Personally cannot answer your question, but will be watching for other's replies.

I will be heading down to FL in Feb and only have 2 weeks worth of reservations made. The rest of the time, 3 weeks, I plan to be winging it. I've heard both that it is difficult without and that there is no real problem if you are flexible.

If you have definite places you want to be on definite days, I would make reservations for those places and times. Never too late to try.
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Old 12-26-2016, 11:57 AM   #3
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I take it you are asking about areas in Florida? You shouldn't have any problems here in Arizona. You can even rent trailer space in the hundreds of RV parks for discounted prices if rented for the month/months.
The "Lost Dutchman State Park" near us in Apache Junction Arizona usually will have spaces available without hookups that one can stay in until full hookup spots become available. Many FGRV members have stayed there throughout the years, and all have really enjoyed the stay.
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Old 12-26-2016, 02:04 PM   #4
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I was in FL for the month of Feb last year, the state parks in the lower half of the state anywhere near the shore were full on the weekends and mostly full the rest of the week. I had made reservations way ahead of time. In the northern parts of the state there were more vacancies but we did not try at the shore. Try plugging in your wishes at ReserveAmerica and see what's available.
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Old 12-26-2016, 02:16 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by padlin00 View Post
I was in FL for the month of Feb last year, the state parks in the lower half of the state anywhere near the shore were full on the weekends and mostly full the rest of the week. I had made reservations way ahead of time. In the northern parts of the state there were more vacancies but we did not try at the shore. Try plugging in your wishes at ReserveAmerica and see what's available.
Bob and Deb,
That makes sense, in that the farther south you go, the warmer it is. There must be at least 10 degree difference in temperature
I will check out ReserveAmerica.
Thanks for the tip,
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Old 12-26-2016, 03:46 PM   #6
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If you like the everglades, long pine key doesn't take reservations.

We stayed in Big Cypress National Preserve at Monument Lake campground (no hookups) with reservations last year & really loved it. Campground is not remarkable except for the alligator in the lake, location, and ability to reserve. There is a cell tower right there, think it may have been verizon, definately wasn't t-mobile. Some of the spaces are kind of tight, especially if there are big RVs alongside the lake. We stayed at the site right next to the day use area and had plenty of room.
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Old 12-26-2016, 03:59 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Lisa in Michigan View Post
If you like the everglades, long pine key doesn't take reservations.

We stayed in Big Cypress National Preserve at Monument Lake campground (no hookups)
Would require electrical hookup after a day or two!
Thanks,
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Old 12-26-2016, 04:03 PM   #8
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We are in Florida now, near Lake Okeechobee. Some parks are full, some private have openings. Quite a range of prices. We made all our reservations 6 months or more ahead of time. Last year we got into some campgrounds by finding cancellations. This area is warmer than northern Florida, you want to be below I 4 at least.
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Old 12-26-2016, 04:15 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
We are in Florida now, near Lake Okeechobee. Some parks are full, some private have openings. Quite a range of prices. We made all our reservations 6 months or more ahead of time. Last year we got into some campgrounds by finding cancellations. This area is warmer than northern Florida, you want to be below I 4 at least.
Great idea on finding cancellations! We'll have to remember that one.

What day/night temperatures are you experiencing now and will that change much in February?
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Old 12-26-2016, 05:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
We are in Florida now, near Lake Okeechobee. Some parks are full, some private have openings. Quite a range of prices. We made all our reservations 6 months or more ahead of time. Last year we got into some campgrounds by finding cancellations. This area is warmer than northern Florida, you want to be below I 4 at least.

Being almost anywhere in Florida beats the northern climate in the winter. I, however, would not draw the boundary at I-4. In reality, many snow birds winter north of I-4 and can spend 9 out of 10 days in shirtsleeves. While I wouldn't recommend the panhandle/northern part of the state (where it can get rather chilly), I would recommend Gainesville/Ocala south. I live an hour north of I-4 and have seen 80-degree temperatures in February, as well as overnight temps in the low 30s. While exceedingly rare, Miami has on occasion seen snow. Even during "cold spells," I usually only need a sweatshirt of a light jacket after the sun comes up. And having lived here for 30+ years, I am acclimated to Florida's climate and feel chilled at higher temperatures than the average snowbird. If you restrict yourself to "south of I-4, you are doing yourself a disservice.


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Old 12-26-2016, 05:50 PM   #11
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Being almost anywhere in Florida beats the northern climate in the winter. I, however, would not draw the boundary at I-4. In reality, many snow birds winter north of I-4 and can spend 9 out of 10 days in shirtsleeves. While I wouldn't recommend the panhandle/northern part of the state (where it can get rather chilly), I would recommend Gainesville/Ocala south. I live an hour north of I-4 and have seen 80-degree temperatures in February, as well as overnight temps in the low 30s. If you restrict yourself to "south of I-4, you are doing yourself a disservice.


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Your Right, Even 50 degree weather beats shoveling snow! That's the great thing about being mobile. If it's too cold just move further south, assuming there's available campsites.
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Old 12-26-2016, 06:57 PM   #12
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Well, I just filled in another 5 nights with a reservation at Monument Lake in the Big Cypress National Preserve (I've never been to this area of FL). I also have some relatives who will be at their house in Homosassa, FL where I will probably driveway surf for a few nights. Think I'll keep the rest of the time free to wing it.
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Old 12-26-2016, 07:07 PM   #13
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We actually spend time in campgrounds in northern Florida and southern Georgia. I just picked I 4 as a arbitrary reference point. Weather where we are at the southern end of Lake Okeechobee has been nice for the 3 weeks we have been here, 60's at night, 80's during the day and generally a nice breeze. We have moved from every couple days to other times every couple weeks. Not all that difficult depending what we set up at the time. Visiting with other camping folk that have not made reservations we find them having difficulty coming up with affordable campgrounds in this part of the state.
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Old 12-26-2016, 08:27 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
We actually spend time in campgrounds in northern Florida and southern Georgia. I just picked I 4 as a arbitrary reference point. Weather where we are at the southern end of Lake Okeechobee has been nice for the 3 weeks we have been here, 60's at night, 80's during the day and generally a nice breeze. We have moved from every couple days to other times every couple weeks. Not all that difficult depending what we set up at the time. Visiting with other camping folk that have not made reservations we find them having difficulty coming up with affordable campgrounds in this part of the state.

Yea, I agree. Weather really is a "crap shoot." If a strong cold front pushes through, you may not be able to get far enough south to leave the ski parka in the closet! A year ago, I hit freezing temps in Georgia in October, and a week later it was in the 70s. Go figure. 🤗


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Old 12-27-2016, 05:23 AM   #15
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Dan, I'm not sure what you meant by "permitted homesteading rules". The only item I've ever been asked for at a military campground is a DD form 2 (retired) card. There are many full-timers that are retired military, so I would phone ahead to ask about openings anywhere in Florida.
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Old 12-27-2016, 06:56 AM   #16
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Dan, I'm not sure what you meant by "permitted homesteading rules". The only item I've ever been asked for at a military campground is a DD form 2 (retired) card. There are many full-timers that are retired military, so I would phone ahead to ask about openings anywhere in Florida.
It has been our experience in the past "not all but"some Military Campgrounds don't enforce the regulations for "maximum stay time". We have seen full-timers stay 6 months because rules are overlooked by management. Active duty personal living in Military Campgrounds and working on base in place of on or off base housing. Military contract workers living at military recreational areas. We've seen little white fences built around gardens. All this limits campsites for these who just want to get away for a week, week-end or just need an overnight stay while traveling through.
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Old 12-27-2016, 08:48 AM   #17
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My case in point:

I just went to Eglin AFB FamCamp's website -
U.S. Military Campgrounds and RV Parks - Eglin AFB FamCamp
And under Campground Information it says:
"180 day stay limit. Guest must vacate for 72 hours before returning"

Here the rules are not being overlooked but they are the rules. I personally don't feel this is fair to all those eligibly to use these facilities.

So if there are 25 sites at a Military Campground. 25 people could conceivable live there year round minus the 72 hours out before returning! And some places, the management can wave that also. You will find other military campgrounds with similar rules.

We were once military retired RV full-timers also but being a military retiree shouldn't give us the right to homestead a military campsite.

I feel much of this is because these campgrounds are now run by civilians contractors and the object is not to provide a service to the military but to make money! And they do that by keeping the campsites filled year round the easiest way they can.

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Old 12-27-2016, 11:04 AM   #18
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Don't forget North Florida

At our campground in Live Oak, FL, we experience, on average, about 4 freezing nights a year. Daytime temps will average around 60, but you could see 80, or 45. This whole region is low development, and heavy on nature and eco travel. If you enjoy exploring the outdoors such as hiking or canoeing, it is an outstanding time of year for it. There are plenty of sites in this region through the winter. Our place in particular is well situated for road trips, with both I10 and I75 less than 5 miles away. While I've never done it, the prices and availability are reported to become a problem starting from Ocala and South. Home | Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park & Campground
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Old 12-27-2016, 11:23 AM   #19
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I'm heading south tomorrow....

will have spouse in tow but not the camper. We are heading to Sebring, a nice town in south central Florida.

90 miles north to the theme parks, 90 miles south to the Everglades, and 90 miles east or west to the coasts.

I've been watching the weather and right now it seems to be high 70's to low 80's and is supposed to dip down to the low 60's this Friday then right back to the low 80's.

We have friends that stay in the panhandle and they have too many days in the 50's to suit me.

By February it will be warmer.

We stay in a community called Buttonwood Bay. There are hundreds of homes there, mostly manufactured houses, double wides, single wides, and a smattering of "park" models. That's what we rent.

There are also dozens of sites for RV's. And the RV's are, to quote President-elect Trump, "HUGE"!

Giant fifthwheels with slideouts mostly. Two years ago someone came in with an Airstream Bambi and everyone had to come by and look at the tiny trailer!

The RV sites are typically rented for the winter but there are usually some open ones and I imagine they are available for short stays but I could never define Buttonwood Bay as a campground.
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Old 12-27-2016, 11:27 AM   #20
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I'm heading south tomorrow....

will have spouse in tow but not the camper. We are heading to Sebring, a nice town in south central Florida.

90 miles north to the theme parks, 90 miles south to the Everglades, and 90 miles east or west to the coasts.

I've been watching the weather and right now it seems to be high 70's to low 80's and is supposed to dip down to the low 60's this Friday then right back to the low 80's.

We have friends that stay in the panhandle and they have too many days in the 50's to suit me.

By February it will be warmer.

We stay in a community called Buttonwood Bay. There are hundreds of homes there, mostly manufactured houses, double wides, single wides, and a smattering of "park" models. That's what we rent.

There are also dozens of sites for RV's. And the RV's are, to quote President-elect Trump, "HUGE"!

Giant fifthwheels with slideouts mostly. Two years ago someone came in with an Airstream Bambi and everyone had to come by and look at the tiny trailer!

The RV sites are typically rented for the winter but there are usually some open ones and I imagine they are available for short stays but I could never define Buttonwood Bay as a campground.

I need to add it's only for old people, 55+.
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