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Uplander 12-28-2014 10:52 AM

Advise on trip plan to warmer location in April/May
 
My wife and I are trying to plan a trip in April/May to the southeast or west. By that time I should be able to move my currently snow bound winterized Travel Trailer out to the open road.
We are retired and when we were younger we toured almost the entire country in a Sunline Travel Trailer (1985-1991) with our two children. Now we are back into the RV camping mode without the kids and with few Time restrictions.

The planning starts now and we are open to suggestions. My plan is to leave the generator home for this trip and try to stay at full hook-up sites and try to limit stops to two or three days and cover more than one state.
Our escape from extreme upstate New York would put us in Pennsylvania for one night as we head south....after that we have nothing planed yet.

Suggestions please!

Thanks.

mary and bob 12-28-2014 11:08 AM

We left upstate NY late November with a couple stopovers at SC state parks on the coast with final destination the coast of GA. By mid March we are back home as the southern campgrounds are busier and more bugs. We like campgrounds that have at least electric hookup. Sewer and cable is a plus.

Jon Vermilye 12-28-2014 11:25 AM

I've made many cross country trips (here is a link to my "Trips" page), the earlier ones in a tent, and in 2011 started traveling in a trailer. While I can't give specific suggestions since we all travel for different reasons (mine are to find interesting places to photograph), in general, I travel in a mix of commercial county & state campgrounds with hookups, and dry camping in National Parks & BLM campgrounds. I don't carry a generator, but do have 95 watts of solar.

For me, one of the most difficult transitions from "vacations" to traveling without time restrictions was to accept that there was no longer the need to "get there", and concentrate on the travel. I shifted from the interstates to the secondary roads, slowed down to relaxing driving speeds, and went from 300-400 miles per day to an average of 150 or less. I also found I preferred to stop early in the day. Better availability of campsites, more time to set up & relax, etc. I usually stop around 1 - 2 PM. I also found that staying in one location for more than a couple of days took some adjusting to, but gave the opportunity to explore the area, meet & talk with locals about what to see, etc.

As to some specific ideas of places to see, I keep on-line journals of most of my trips. The ones with the trailer are linked below:

2011 trip to pick up the trailer (111 days)
2012 Trip (138 days)
2013-2014 Trip to Skip Winter (304 days)

I hope these may give you some ideas of places to see.

TomK 12-28-2014 11:41 AM

Patrick, we spent 10 days in the Tampa / St Pete area in mid-April this year and the weather was beautiful. We wore shorts, and flip flops and were never too hot or cold. The beaches weren't crowded, but the water was fine for swimming. It was welcome relief from the polar vortexes that seemed to zero in on Chicagoland last winter. You could start there and then follow the Gulf around as the weather warmed up. Good luck, and have fun planning!

Tom

honda03842 12-28-2014 11:52 AM

1982 Sunline 15.5
 
We bought our Sunline to drive across Labrador in 2008, we kept going and made a loop of the USA. I loved the layout of that trailer.

For us April and May are sort of late to head South. The temperatures will be getting really warm. I might consider heading west to Oregon, WA or Northern CA. For us we go to Newfoundland in May and June.

If you're going South I would consider higher western elevations or states like NC and SC that are lovely in April and May.

How long do you expect to be gone?.

Carl Pa 12-28-2014 12:08 PM

I am trying to plan the same trip, leaving about late feb. mar.to shorten the length of winter. I would not want to travel a lot of miles in one day, maybe 200 mi at a time. I plan to head south but finding hook up campgrounds up north are somewhat scarce and not open till i get further south. I do not want to follow I 95 S. I would like to get into SC, NC,AL, FL. I am retired and have no time schedule to follow. Any suggestions as well? Carl

honda03842 12-28-2014 12:52 PM

Carl, We drive 150 miles a day, trying to stop early like Jon with his Escape. There are two campgrounds in Delaware that are open year round, Lum's Pond and Killens State Parks. They have 6 electric sites, we usually reserve one, particularly in cooler weather. We often stay at Kiptopeke State Park just before the bridge. It's expensive but it's part of our history so we stay there. There's also Janes Island State Park in southern MD. They have a senior rate equivalent to the National Senior pass. If you have a senior pass you can apply on line to MD and get theirs, a really good deal and Jane's Island is nice and not too far off route 13.

We do not travel on I 95 except thru parts of NJ and across GA. We generally drive thru DE, MD and VA across the Chesapeake Bridge taking route 17 all the way to GA. There are plenty of campgrounds open and a number of relatively inexpensive Passport parks. In SC we mainly stay at state parks.

Lora 12-28-2014 02:26 PM

Are you retired military? There are some nice parks along the coast in VA.

Uplander 12-28-2014 02:52 PM

We do not have a time table set yet....retired....however our property has about 20 acres and about 5 acres is in lawn that must be mowed. The grass starts growing in mid May. In the summer season we camp for a week at a time in the various state parks in the Adirondacks of New York, Green Mountains of Vermont, White Mountains of New Hampshire and the State of Maine etc....shorter trips so we can return and maintain our property.
Sooner or later we will find someone to cut the lawn in the summer.

Whenever I do travel south I always avoid I95. It is the worst highway in the world. The New Jersey section is a zoo filled to the brim with aggressive/crazy/rude drivers....Connecticut and Mass. Ain't much better.
My son lives in South Carolina and we use I81 when we head south through NY, PA, Maryland, W. vA, Virgina, No. Carolina....country drive for the most part, hills and farms....less traffic...less stress !!!

steve dunham 12-28-2014 03:44 PM

[QUOTE=Uplander;497464)

Whenever I do travel south I always avoid I95. It is the worst highway in the world. The New Jersey section is a zoo filled to the brim with aggressive/crazy/rude drivers....Connecticut and Mass. Ain't much better.
My son lives in South Carolina and we use I81 when we head south through NY, PA, Maryland, W. vA, Virgina, No. Carolina....country drive for the most part, hills and farms....less traffic...less stress !!![/QUOTE]

I agree If you wish to have a sane ,leisurely drive south, avoid I-95.
Between the truck traffic , everyone driving over the speed limit and right on your bumper ,it is not on our list of roads to travel. State highways may be slower but IMHO are a much more relaxed and interesting drive

honda03842 12-28-2014 03:48 PM

Patrick,

When our kids left home we sold the acres of grass and now have a 1/6th acre.

When we're gone we have a neighbor do it. it's more fun to do anything new then cut grass.

mary and bob 12-28-2014 06:50 PM

Now I'm the opposite of Norm. I have 10 acres, 2 barns, farm tractors, lawn tractors, vintage vehicles and I like it all. It does keep me busy but I'm OK with it all. We don't want to sell our house and be full time RVers or move to Florida. We do enjoy spending a few months in the south away from the cold but if that doesn't happen I can stay home and deal with it as I no longer have to go to work. We use our campers in the summer at various locations in the northeast. We have a few favorite state parks we stay at on our way south before reaching our winter destination in GA. We try a couple new ones each year.

honda03842 12-28-2014 08:27 PM

Bob,

I'm a person looking for new, different and the unknown and sometimes the unknowable. I admit to my weirdness and know not everybody or maybe anyone is like me, Ginny is forever reminding me when I get too enthusiastic.

I will say I love going to the Florida Fly Wheelers Show, an enormous event not far from us, loving all the old equipment and particularly old engines, sawmill and tractors.

I also love Craters of the Moon, one of the former locations of the Yellowstone hot spot, and the wonder that the whole continent is sliding over that stationary hot spot on it's progression east, amazed by the volcanic rocks and their colors and content.

There is so much new to stimulate one's imagination out there, there's just not enough time.

Today I was reading about gold prospecting in Newfoundland, may be this spring.....

Wayne Perpall 12-28-2014 08:46 PM

Camping locations in Longboat Key, Flolrida
 
Heading to meet some family in Longboat Key, Florida the 1st week in March. Anyone have advice on campgrounds in that area. Am looking at Myakka River State Park, but would like to be on the key if that is possible. Any information or personal experience in that area would be appreciated.

WildBirder 12-28-2014 08:51 PM

Bob and Norm,

You have just highlighted one of my life's biggest dilemmas. I envy both your retirement lifestyles but feel they're mostly incompatible. Unless I retire very well off :)
Still a long ways ahead anyway.


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV

honda03842 12-28-2014 08:56 PM

Choices, though different, are not exclusionary. Both can be good choices.

mary and bob 12-28-2014 08:57 PM

HA Norm, I also admit to being weird but probably in different directions. I would be quite interested in that Fly Wheelers show. Sometimes I get too set in my ways, what I know and what I'm comfortable with limits me in exploring new places. I need to follow your ideas more. Always enjoy your posts.

mary and bob 12-28-2014 09:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WildBirder (Post 497491)
Bob and Norm,

You have just highlighted one of my life's biggest dilemmas. I envy both your retirement lifestyles but feel they're mostly incompatible. Unless I retire very well off :)
Still a long ways ahead anyway.


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV

Do you mean between Norm and me we are incompatible, or what we do is incompatible with what you want or can do. I will say Norm does much different that what I do, and I really admire what and how he does it. I'm more stuck in possessions and routine. I wouldn't say I was well off, wife and I had blue collar jobs, retired with small pensions and social security. Could not afford to travel the country but do manage to get out of the cold northeast for the winter and use our campers in the summer mostly within a few hours of home. We live fairly simple lives otherwise and don't require much. We want to keep our current home until the time that we can no longer maintain it. Then we'll get our kids to take care of us !!

WildBirder 12-28-2014 10:01 PM

Mostly I'm day dreaming of the everyday weekend and how me and my wife would like to spend it. There's a part of us that would love a chunk of land, some fruit trees, pets and a barn/shop with "projects" I could work on. I love to renovate and build things. Though life stages prevent it at this time.
We also love travel and exploring. I agree with Norm that there is so much to see. Little time to see what interests me let alone "see it all".
When we do retire I don't think we can do both. Unless we had a finically windfall.


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV

Mike Magee 12-28-2014 10:51 PM

Patrick, April and early May temperatures in Southern Utah are quite good, and the sheer number of parks and monuments in that state make it a great destination. You could have a very memorable trip by visiting the Grand Canyon, then Zion NP, then Red Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Kodachrome Basin. Continue to Capitol Reef NP, Goblin Valley SP, Arches NP, and Canyonlands. The variety of sandstone colors and formations is staggering.

By then you probably will be into mid-May, and a drive through the mountains on your way back will provide a nice counterpoint of snow-capped peaks, rugged granite, green forests and blue lakes. Telluride, Ouray, and Silverton area come to mind... or for a quicker ride home if you're feeling tired, just take I-70.


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