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Old 04-24-2021, 09:48 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Floyd if everyone was as ethical & considerate as you and followed your example by using Walmart as rest stop , we would probably not be having this discussion

Here’s my experiences with Walmart campers

1) Stopped at Walmart on Friday AM - Trailer parked in Walmart lot . I returned on Sunday , same trailer still parked in lot - chairs out —BBQ smoking away
2) Walmart campers emptying black / gray tanks in storm drains
3) Walmart campers emptying black / gray tanks into rain water holding / settling ponds
4) Leaving bags of trash in parking lot or next to dumpsters for other’s to dispose of , if they catch it before the wind blows it around
5) Setting up charcoal grill on blacktop making rain water collection points
6) Lighting wood campfire on asphalt pavement / lawn
7) Playing music loudly late into the night
8) Plugging their trailers into available receptacle and stealing power from Walmart

This occurred at a small Walmart in our area until the local governing authority shut it down due to local residents complaints
The stupidity of this whole affair is that there was a public campgrounds less than two miles down the road from Walmart - Fees less than $10 /night with electricity
After years of reading this and other like forums , it became abundantly clear that Walmart parking lots are often chosen not for convenience but because some people are CHEAP
Bragging that you camped for 200 days for less than $1 / day says all I need to know .
I have no desire to see every Walmart parking lot between here and the West Coast / East Coast
My night at Walmart often ends up costing between 30 and fifty dollars
As for campgrounds, I usually have reservations (but I stay anyway )

I've seen inconsiderate slobs everywhere and getting more common everyday.... especially at campgrounds/kennels.
I have actually seen fewer abuses at Walmarts than at campgrounds.


Let me reiterate... I have a "Travel Trailer", not a "camper" per se.
It was bought to attend events and vacation spots... consider most folks fly to events and vacations which are some distance from home. I just prefer to drive and stay in my own accommodations when possible.
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Old 04-24-2021, 10:22 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
And, they are still not places I would voluntarily spend my time. I choose to drive two or three hours and get a nice site in the early afternoon, leave the next day around ten.

I prefer to enjoy the journey, not just the destination ( which I also enjoy ).
There are a lot of people who like that sort of traveling -- but it's not the only style. Personally, I'd rather spend my days in places more beautiful that the average CG. When I can, I spend my time (with my trailer) parked in really spectacular places that usually don't allow overnight parking. After dinner, I am ready to find a place for the night and it doesn't need to be anything special since I usually leave before breakfast for the next spectacular place at which I stop for breakfast.

All too often, it's impossible to find a spot in a CG because they are full of folks who have been there since 2 pm -- and, who all too often, made a reservation.

Over the last several years, I've seen a significant move towards all-reservation CG's and the closing off of really nice places in national forests, etc. I understand the closing off of places since I've seen firsthand how little respect many people have for such places. All-in-all, IMHO the camping experience isn't close to what it once was.
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Old 04-24-2021, 11:45 AM   #23
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Git accustomed to it.

NO overnight parking will be the norm at all Walmart's within the next 5 years if not much sooner!

Most likely MUCH SOONER THAN LATER with new city ordinances concerning overnight parking, local RV parking ordinances, homeless camps that are NOW set up near Walmart in many cities, Walmart Corporate that will git tired of their facilities looking shabby and local people who just want to bitch and complain about something as they feel they know what's best for the masses!

Coming soon to a Walmart near you.

NO OVERNIGHT PARKING!!!
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Old 04-24-2021, 12:27 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by vintageracer View Post
Git accustomed to it.

NO overnight parking will be the norm at all Walmart's within the next 5 years if not much sooner!

Most likely MUCH SOONER THAN LATER with new city ordinances concerning overnight parking, local RV parking ordinances, homeless camps that are NOW set up near Walmart in many cities, Walmart Corporate that will git tired of their facilities looking shabby and local people who just want to bitch and complain about something as they feel they know what's best for the masses!

Coming soon to a Walmart near you.

NO OVERNIGHT PARKING!!!
I've heard that same opinion and prediction for over 20 years. It hasn't happened, nor have RVers by in large abused the privilege over time.
Still we have seen the loss of civility and tolerance across the board over time and we could possibly even see restrictions in travel.

Things are changing for sure as fear and intimidation covers the land.
I will try to continue to live with respect and civility as long as it is allowed...even if it is only another 5 years.


Do you suppose no RVs will be allowed in the lot even to shop at the 24hr WalMarts?
I heard IllAnnoy is considering a permanent law to require a medical card to travel or even enter local stores.
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Old 04-24-2021, 01:46 PM   #25
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Hopefully this is just a case of what has always been the situation. Walmarts at college towns almost everywhere do not allow overnight parking, because during college football season they would get overwhelmed by fans coming to see games. The Univ. Wisconsin-Stout is in Menomoni, and although it does not have a major football team, they do have one. Maybe they were having too many fans parking for football games at that Walmart.
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Old 04-24-2021, 02:13 PM   #26
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I'm told the sign went up last fall

Quote:
Originally Posted by GatorCasita View Post
Hopefully this is just a case of what has always been the situation. Walmarts at college towns almost everywhere do not allow overnight parking, because during college football season they would get overwhelmed by fans coming to see games. The Univ. Wisconsin-Stout is in Menomoni, and although it does not have a major football team, they do have one. Maybe they were having too many fans parking for football games at that Walmart.
When the problems were going on in Minnesota, some people tried to spill them over into Menomonie. By the way, any Stout parents that need a place to camp, there is a very nice campground just south of town. Crowded but not overcrowded and near Devils Punchbowl. Menomonie Bike, Camp & Canoe - Irvington Campground & RV Park - Menomonie Wisconsin 54751 - 715-235-CAMP (2267)
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Old 04-24-2021, 02:18 PM   #27
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I certainly understand not wanting to spend the big dollars for a few hours sleep overnite on the way to your destination.
We have traveled several times from Canada to SoCal and back.
Never stayed at a Walmart, Crackerbarrel(never heard of 'em), truck stop or any other "free" "rest stop" overnite for a couple reasons.
We travel with our 13 boler it doesn't have a shower which I like daily.
Our porta potty is emergency only. I don't feel comfortable in a Walmart lot during the day let alone 3am with someone eyeing up the Canadian plate on the back. Hotels ,, well people now call them home far as I can tell the 6s and 8s are pretty scary places these days.
So when we pull our boler long distance we plan and reserve our nights at decent rv places,,, part of the cost of the trip.
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Old 04-24-2021, 03:35 PM   #28
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When I was 15 and my dad was 45 we often disagreed on things. He would listen to my take on a subject, probably in his mind figured it wasn’t worth arguing about it and most Likely knew I was wrong and did’t know it. So he wold say very seriously, “I may not agree with what you have to say but I will defend to the death your right to say it. Voltaire” I knew the discussion was probably over and went on to the next task at hand. A few years later in a college outdoor recreation course I was exposed to the book Outdoor Recreation in America by Clayne R Jensen. Jensen put forth his theory on fulfillment of an outdoor experience with four steps
Planning, Travel to and from, The actual experience and the later recollection. This is how I have viewed my recreation experiences for well over 50 years now. So, if Walmart stays are part Of your adventure so be it. If free camping is your style and $75 a night campsites are someone else’s again so be it. And if you only got out of a trip, the purchase of a tee shirt that says “been there, done that, it’s good with me but I do pity you if that’s all you came away with. Memories can last a lifetime and planning, and travel can overshadow the actual experience at times. Consider the Complete recreation experience and recognize that we all have a right to express ourselves In a forum. If that right is taken away, it’s no longer a forum.
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Old 04-24-2021, 07:16 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AC0GV View Post
....
It is getting harder and harder to find a place to stop for a few hours...... A campground nap for 50$ + is just too much to spend...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
That sounds like such a wonderful experience. How bad is where you live, and how bad is the food, to leave and go parking at a CrackerBarrel?
So here is the question. in this age of people wanting to "travel and see the world..."

As it turns out, you are not alone.. not even close to being alone... in fact there are so many people who want that travel experience that the competition is very high, and of course, prices follow demand. A decent hotel is about $100 a night but you think that $50 is too much to park your camper for a night? Maybe it is.. but the demand decides that price... not you.

And if the price of seeing the world is too high.. there is an alternative, which happens to be something that becomes more and more appealing to me (YMMV).

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Old 04-24-2021, 08:05 PM   #30
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Every truckstop I have been to has showers. The bathrooms in Walmarts and Cracker Barrel are cleaner than most I have seen in campgrounds. Planning ahead is great, but with camping at record high use right now, finding spots can be difficult. Just to get a reservation at my destination for my next trip, I had to get up at 2AM, on the first day reservations were open (it was 2AM here, 12 midnight mountain time). Immediately logged in on my computer, maybe 5 minutes after midnight. Two sites were left.....
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Old 04-24-2021, 08:19 PM   #31
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Everything is a compromise. Some I'm willing to do, some I'm not, and for some reason I have opinions on which is which.
Just brought in a crew to top 35' tall laurel hedge down to six feet. My back yard is much sunnier and more airy. But, I also can see my neighbour ( he paid half ), sunbathing in the nude on his patio.

Doesn't bother me, doesn't bother him. Shouldn't bother you.
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Old 04-24-2021, 09:40 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowa Dave View Post
I was exposed to the book Outdoor Recreation in America by Clayne R Jensen. Jensen put forth his theory on fulfillment of an outdoor experience with four steps
Planning, Travel to and from, The actual experience and the later recollection.
I used to backpack and sometimes elected to not take the 35mm camera along. It weighed almost two pounds, (without film), and I figured that taking pictures competed with focusing on the experience in the moment. Years later, the photos I took on various trips were certainly enjoyable, but in turn I never regretted taking those other trips without the camera. So, there's a tension of sorts between the actual experience and the later recollection.

Oh, and that was a great link. I've also enjoyed Doris Day's take on that number.

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Old 04-24-2021, 11:21 PM   #33
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As a newspaper photographer, I attended hundreds of football, basketball and hockey games. Never saw a thing. If I had captured the moment, the mirror in the SLR was up and the viewfinder was black.
Went to hundreds of concerts and never heard a note. All my attention was on the image.
I'm retired. Somebody else can take the picture while I enjoy the experience.
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Old 04-25-2021, 12:40 AM   #34
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Thanks Mike for the song. Doris always seemed to have a smile to share
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Old 04-25-2021, 06:31 AM   #35
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I have never stayed the night at a Walmart, a Cracker Barrel, a rest area or a truck stop, but with the current reservation only trend, it might come to that if there is nothing else available. I live in a nice place. My nearest neighbor is a quarter mile away. Getting up at 2 am to get the last campsite, so I can be cheek and jowl with the masses after sitting in traffic to get there, no thanks. I like our national parks but not that much. I bought my camper to see the country and to go to nice places. Quiet places. Places that are different than home, with a different landscape. If I want traffic, crowds and parking lots, I'll go back to New Jersey.
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Old 04-25-2021, 06:46 AM   #36
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Hi Mike
Like you, we did some backpacking too. As soon after we were married and we could afford it, we bought a 35 mm camera and started taking photos. I worked for an elected Parks Commission. Not long before i started, they had paid for a professionally produced color brochure promoting the city and its parks. They were a little disappointed by the photography. All the pictures had been taken on the same day. When they learned i had a "good camera" that i always had with me, the president, who was also the president of the Chamber of Commerce, told me to take all the pictures i wanted. Also to take any positive "City goings on and positive developments". So i did. They paid for all the film and developing and when i got the slides back i divided them up and kept the vacations and birthdays and gave them pictures of park pavilions, ball field complexes and new construction in our city. The president got a slide projector and gave a little slide show at his meetings quite often. I had that deal for several years. Although those kinds of deals would be frowned on today, at the time 50 years ago i was cast in a positive light for my cooperation, ability and positive attitude. Those days are gone. probably get jail time today. i like Doris Day too.
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Old 04-25-2021, 07:46 AM   #37
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My wife , myself and our dog are leaving on a three week trip in early May
Back in January we made our plans , picked our destinations , chose our itinerary , and made and paid for our camping reservations .
What confuses me is why our taking the time to plan and taking the effort to make reservations screws it up for those who can’t make up their mind and procrastinate to the very last minute .
Campgrounds need income to survive and reservations provide income , serendipity does NOT .
The lack of camping space at Federal , State , County campgrounds is not the fault of reservations , it’s the fault of short sighted politicians who only answer to the no taxes for anything crowd

The idea that Walmart or the Cracker Barrel or the government owes us free camping spots , or must hold spots open just in case we decide at the last minute to stop by seems odd .
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Old 04-25-2021, 08:38 AM   #38
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Well, it looks like this thread is apples and oranges for the purpose of being contrary.


We already have reservations for next winter for places which are pleasant to stay and offer attractions in which we are interested.
Getting there is a matter of transportation.


An RV offers spontaneity for roadside attractions or picking a road less traveled in transit to a destination, vacation, or event. Much better than a plane or a bus.
Being tied to a travel plan which forces you to be at a known destination each night means you can't spend that extra time over a nice lunch or exploring a roadside antique shop.

Accepting the hospitality of a restaurant or Walmart parking lot, while reciprocating by giving them our business, is NOT camping.
In fact many RV resort destinations could hardly be called "camping"
(ever been to Myrtle Beach?)


Deciding at four in the afternoon to "stop shop and sleep" or to move on for another six hours on the road is a valuable freedom.
Deciding on a scenic back road and finding a small town with shops which offer an afternoon of interest or a bike path along the lake, and knowing you can linger over a meal in a nice restaurant without having the worry of seeking out a campground later in the evening is a valuable freedom.


While it is true that CrackerBarrel or Walmart don't "owe" you a parking spot for shopping or overnighting , it is also true that you don't "owe" them your business.
Their hospitality and parking spaces are business decisions intended to benefit both the customer and the business.
Stopping at 9PM because you are tired, or deciding to drive on to avoid an impending storm front is a valuable freedom.


Use good judgement when choosing to overnight, stay only where you are welcomed and enjoy the journey as well as the destination.


BTW, we have found many "welcome centers" and rest areas along the road to be MUCH more pleasant and comfortable and even quieter than some of the shoddy surprise campgrounds in which we have found ourselves.
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Old 04-25-2021, 09:01 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by AC0GV View Post
I tried to do the first of the year test run of the RV tonight. Here is a picture of the Menomonie, Wisconsin Walmart, and the sign that says no overnight parking. (Yes, I did check the web site first.)
The person at the service counter said that the order came from corporate. If you know of others not listed, please use the “contact us” to add them to the list. https://www.walmartlocator.com/no-park-walmarts/
It is getting harder and harder to find a place to stop for a few hours. I have also found places that allow nothing over 6 feet tall to be parked along the highway. That bans even my tow vehicle. A campground nap for 50$ + is just too much to spend.
After seeing what people have left behind at many free and/or public sites I totally understand, but it hurts all of us.
A lot of the posts in this thread end up debating pros and cons of various types of overnight rest stops while traveling. Most of them totally ignore the thoughts behind the O.P.'s comments.

I see the O.P. is simply lamenting the loss of more personal options for an overnight rest stop.

It seems many favor such losses and actually encourage actions which tend to reduce them. That is what saddens me.
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Old 04-25-2021, 09:08 AM   #40
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Thanks to all

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Originally Posted by AC0GV View Post
After seeing what people have left behind at many free and/or public sites I totally understand, but it hurts all of us.

The original post was just meant to inform people of the loss of a place that up until last year had heavy use, and to ask people to keep that web page updated. While upon rare occasions I have had posts get so far off topic and so spiteful that they had to be taken down, the responses here have been well thought out and have given us things to think about. “Camping” is different things to different people. I had a trip planned every month all summer, they were all in the mid-west. My June event has been cancelled, due to covid so now I have an opening. It is business (by car) in northwest Wisconsin this week and then a big hole in the ground at Mammoth Cave, Kentucky in May. Now that I am retired, I do not know how I ever found the time to work for a living.
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