Dangerous/other rest stops not to go to. - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-15-2020, 07:33 PM   #21
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Unwritten rules and rest areas?

In Ohio the rest areas are fine. They are heavily used by truckers overnight and I understand spaces can even be reserved. My question is do truckers mind if a car with a trailer takes up a space for 8 hours over night? Are there unwritten rules to be aware of?
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Old 05-15-2020, 08:26 PM   #22
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Ever seen the signs in Utah warning about tired driving? It has been proven that tired driving is similar to DUI.
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Old 05-15-2020, 08:48 PM   #23
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Ohio Turnpike Rest Areas

Both in 2017 and 2018 while traveling East on the Ohio Turnpike returning from 50 plus day adventures in the West we stayed at a rest stop. Many of these have a separate area just for RV's. They do charge a fee (self service kiosk, I think it was $ 20). Many have converted to pull thru parking. The one we stayed at both times was the older back in parking ones. Electricity is included at the rear of the site. A dump station is available on the way out of this part of the lot and water is also available but not in your parking spot. You rig cannot be to long ( I have a fairly small 5th wheel by today's standards -- but it is not fiberglass). These cannot be reserved, it is 1st come 1st served. We certainly considered these to be safe both times (and believe me my wife would let me know if she felt otherwise) and since there did not seem to be any close by and/or reasonable priced RV parks I consider this a viable alternative.

I have been dropping by almost nightly for the last 3 and a half years to see what you fiberglassers are up to -- I started before I had bought anything. Still find hints solutions on your site.
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Old 05-15-2020, 10:43 PM   #24
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One year I left las Vegas about noon heading northwest towards the coast. I was on a 2 lane road north of Susanville when I got pulled over. The officer wanted to know if I was ok or had been drinking because I appeared to be wandering a bit on the road. I told him no I was just tired and when I see headlights I have a natural response to pull to the right a bit. He told me in no uncertain terms that he wanted me to stop at the next rest area and not drive any further until morning. He was the nicest officer I've ever encountered out on the road. (In an earlier post I mentioned that I never spent the night at a California rest stop, lol apparently I lied.)

You do run into these types once in a while. Many years ago we were traveling north on Oregon 101 when we pulled off in a "Picnic Area, closes at dusk" spot. Not really a rest area, just a pull off on a high spot parallel to the highway on the beach side. Shortly a red haired State Trooper pulled along side. "You folks planing on staying overnight." We told him we were just enjoying dinner with a view and would be moving on when we were done. "Well," he said, "this is my part of the highway and you're welcome to stay if you want. If anyone asks just tell 'em Red said it was OK." Nice guy. We stayed and watched the sunset. No one bothered us.


I've stayed overnight many times in rest areas, some with restricted time limits, and have never been bothered. Always figured if a Trooper stopped by I'd just tell him/her I was too tired to drive any farther and needed a few hours sleep. "You wouldn't want me going to sleep on the road, would you?"
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Old 05-15-2020, 10:49 PM   #25
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I suspect that if you have teeth and are polite, you won't have a problem breaking the law.
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Old 05-15-2020, 10:58 PM   #26
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I can assure you that significant criminal activity occurs at some rest stops.. usually near metro areas and often involving prostitution.
Lest anyone think less of Gordon here, or wonder how it is that he knows these things, I seem to recall that he had a career in law enforcement!
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Old 05-16-2020, 12:18 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Steve Hammel View Post
One year I left las Vegas about noon heading northwest towards the coast. I was on a 2 lane road north of Susanville when I got pulled over. The officer wanted to know if I was ok or had been drinking because I appeared to be wandering a bit on the road. I told him no I was just tired and when I see headlights I have a natural response to pull to the right a bit. He told me in no uncertain terms that he wanted me to stop at the next rest area and not drive any further until morning. He was the nicest officer I've ever encountered out on the road. (In an earlier post I mentioned that I never spent the night at a California rest stop, lol apparently I lied.)
Last april I stopped at that rest area. Snow on the ground. Sometime I'll spend a night there.
It's only one I know of near Susanville.
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Old 05-16-2020, 07:22 AM   #28
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Here in the SE USA, many states have time limits for rest area stops. North Carolina official rule is four hour limit and no overnight parking. Whether or not they actually enforce the limit, I do not know.

Tennessee is even worse, two hour limit and no overnight parking. Florida limit is three hours.

Almost all of my trips I will return through TN. It would be quite handy to overnight there if it were allowed. So I have a few Walmarts and Cracker Barrels I trust to use instead. Ending a late day driving in the dark, in the rain, through the Smoky Mountains is a bad idea. I've done it, arriving home at 1AM. Never again!!!
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Old 05-16-2020, 11:07 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by Steve Hammel View Post
One year I left las Vegas about noon heading northwest towards the coast. I was on a 2 lane road north of Susanville when I got pulled over. The officer wanted to know if I was ok or had been drinking because I appeared to be wandering a bit on the road. I told him no I was just tired and when I see headlights I have a natural response to pull to the right a bit. He told me in no uncertain terms that he wanted me to stop at the next rest area and not drive any further until morning. He was the nicest officer I've ever encountered out on the road. (In an earlier post I mentioned that I never spent the night at a California rest stop, lol apparently I lied.)
I was born in Susanville, and some lovely people live there. Also, two cowboy cousins have ranches outside of town near Standish. I have wanted to tow my Lil Bigfoot over to see them for some time.

That said, the town has changed a LOT since a prison went in, and so many inmate families have moved there to be near their criminal relative. There is a beautiful RV campground in town, but I would maybe be nervous staying there these days, at least by myself.
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Old 05-17-2020, 01:08 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
Here in the SE USA, many states have time limits for rest area stops. North Carolina official rule is four hour limit and no overnight parking. Whether or not they actually enforce the limit, I do not know.

Tennessee is even worse, two hour limit and no overnight parking. Florida limit is three hours.

Almost all of my trips I will return through TN. It would be quite handy to overnight there if it were allowed. So I have a few Walmarts and Cracker Barrels I trust to use instead. Ending a late day driving in the dark, in the rain, through the Smoky Mountains is a bad idea. I've done it, arriving home at 1AM. Never again!!!
The (eastbound) Florida Welcome Center on I10 allows overnight parking. We stopped there with our Escape 21 on its maiden voyage home in March. That is a nice rest area with some RV parking separate from the trucks.
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Old 05-17-2020, 06:40 PM   #31
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And some are rather basic.
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Old 05-18-2020, 08:22 AM   #32
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Wow, that's a pretty basic uh facility.
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Old 05-19-2020, 11:20 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
Here in the SE USA, many states have time limits for rest area stops. North Carolina official rule is four hour limit and no overnight parking. Whether or not they actually enforce the limit, I do not know.

Tennessee is even worse, two hour limit and no overnight parking. Florida limit is three hours.

Almost all of my trips I will return through TN. It would be quite handy to overnight there if it were allowed. So I have a few Walmarts and Cracker Barrels I trust to use instead. Ending a late day driving in the dark, in the rain, through the Smoky Mountains is a bad idea. I've done it, arriving home at 1AM. Never again!!!
Before retirement, we often left home after getting off work and had a 6-7 hour drive to reach our favorite camping spots in the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest area of Nantahala NF. Getting off by six put us at the I-40 rest area just east of Asheville between eleven and midnight and we'd usually stop there and stay until six the next morning. The trailer parking spots were separate from the truckers and we never had a problem with LEOs or lot lizards. Fully agree with you about driving in the Smokies at night after a long day - the road from Robbinsville to Kilmer is a mini Tail of the Dragon.
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Old 05-19-2020, 08:28 PM   #34
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I am not a huge fan of rest area camping. At least not too close to urban areas. However driving while tired or spending campground fees for 7 hrs. sleep isn't great either.

Some Walmart's are in sort of rough areas. Armed guards at the door are a strong indicator.

Truck stops can be ok if you can sleep through the lights and noise. Coffee or breakfast available as soon as you wake up. Some of those can be a little sketchy also. I would suggest the ones with a bar across the street and a couple of massage parlors in sight of the parking lot are probably best avoided.

I travel with a dog and that helps. I may sleep through someone coming near but the dog won't generally sleep through an approaching person. With the upside and downside that comes from that. Don't park on the route to the rest room from the parking lot.

It really does depend on area. A lot of rest areas seem like an excellent place to catch a few hours sleep. Even 4 or 5 hours is enough to make a big difference in alertness. Planning so that one doesn't have to use the ones right outside of major urban areas is probably smart.

My preference if driving for distance is have dinner, drive on until it starts to get dark, then catch some sleep in a rest area. Leaving in the wee small hours of the morning when there is no traffic to speak of. Breakfast and maybe a nap during morning rush hour. Then on again.

As the years add up I'm leaning more toward the drive 6 or 7 hrs. and hit a camping spot early. Once I retire I think I will develop an allergy to 10 and 12 hour days of driving. With two drivers equaling straight through driving. Driving until I get there with maybe a nap or two along the way is something I'm just not interested in doing anymore. Can. Just don't want to. Arrive exhausted is no real gain.


Have done Michigan to Pueblo Colo. and Michigan to Florida as straight through trips leaving at around midnight or 1:00 am after coming home from work and catching a few hours sleep. West especially it gets me past Chicago early in the morning. Also lines up well to avoid rush hour in Atlanta going south. I was younger back then, young & foolish do go together well don't they?
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Old 05-19-2020, 09:54 PM   #35
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Wow, that's a pretty basic uh facility.
In the Northwest we have evergreen trees so at least there's a little more screening.
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Old 05-21-2020, 06:49 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Tony D View Post
My question is do truckers mind if a car with a trailer takes up a space for 8 hours over night? Are there unwritten rules to be aware of?
I don't know about all truckers but I do know some get upset if they can't find room due to a camper taking a truck spot. Think of it this way, how would you feel if you just finished work, were tired, wanted to get some sleep, went to get in bed and someone was there? They are there for their job, you are there for your vacation.
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Old 05-21-2020, 07:11 AM   #37
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Some of us are also working. We use our trailer to go from one site to another for our summer volunteer work with the Forest Service.
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Old 05-21-2020, 07:18 AM   #38
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No snub meant, BJ. I was trying to encourage people to be thoughtful about it. Unfortunately some truckers will assume a camper is someone on vacation and not necessarily someone traveling for work. If your on vacation think before taking a spot for a truck is all I'm saying.
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Old 05-21-2020, 07:19 AM   #39
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Truckers are federally mandated to get off the road. Called Hours of Service. It's more than just wanting to pull off and get some sleep. They can only work so many hours, then MUST park. Those on vacation or traveling between jobs aren't pressured by law to get off the road. Truck drivers can't pull into an RV park or campground, be courteous and don't take space they absolutely need to stay legal.
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Old 05-21-2020, 07:26 AM   #40
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When stopping at a rest area for a few hours sleep late at night, if the trucker's area is over half full, I'll take up several slots in the most remote area of the cars only parking section. I've never had problems with this
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