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Post Info TOPIC: How do you select where you go?


RV-Dreams Family Member

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How do you select where you go?


We are finally within a few months of hitting the road and I'm finding it overwhelming! With so many choices, how do you decide where to go? We are thinking of leaving Missouri in May to head northwest to national parks. My little table is covered with books, maps and laptop! I'm thinking I'm way over stressing with this. 



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If I were going West to see National Parks, I'd head to Moab, UT and use that for a base camp to see the many parks in that area.

Don't rush to try to see too many parks. Take your time at each one and above all, enjoy! Study the info for each park you'd like to visit.

https://www.nps.gov/index.htm is a good site for info and I'm sure there are others.

You can even head down to the Grand Canyon from there if you run out of parks in Utah, (which I doubt). smile

Don't over stress. If you're full-timing, there's always next year. biggrin

Jim



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May your roads be smooth, and your views ever-new.



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As Jim mentioned above there is always next year. We are getting ready to embark on full timing ourselves. Our house has been recently listed and now we are waiting for someone to purchase it and then we can proceed with selling off our contents. We take delivery of our new 5er at the middle to end of May. Maybe with all we have going I haven't stressed about where to head.

The other thing I have asked the wife to do (and tasked myself with) is to write down what she (and myself) want to see in the next 2 years. This is NOT a set in stone commitment, but rather a plan so I can chart our course of action for the next 2 years, with year 2 being a flex year. Then I figured towards the end of the first year we can review year 2 and begin thinking about that next year (year 3). I figured that way we can really reduce the stress and have a relatively good idea what to budget for expenses.

Good luck and don't stress, life is too short and there's too much to see.

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Thanks gentlemen! I'm overly organized and to take off without a detailed plan is a bit scary for me. The first month may be used to train me how to let go and go with the flow!

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One important thing we learned many years ago was to never make plans in ink!! Always use pencil and carry a big eraser with you.

Relax, smell the roses and have a great time.

Jim



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Jim and Linda
Full-timers from 2001 to 2013
http://parttimewithjandl.blogspot.com/ 
2006 Dodge 2500 Diesel pulling a Heartland 26LRSS TT
May your days be warm, and your skies be blue.
May your roads be smooth, and your views ever-new.



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I just grab the map.........give it the O'l Hippo Hurricane Holler !!!........then Tell So-So to give it a spin!!!!!!........works every time!!



-- Edited by Lucky Mike on Tuesday 19th of April 2016 02:10:15 PM

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Grams,

This is where your "Bucket List" comes in. When we see or hear about a great spot from fellow campers. friends, or TV we print out a one page sheet with the info on the spot and place it in our "To Visit" folders. Then when we are heading into an area for whatever reason to do or visit something (like a family wedding in Northern Wis. from TX) we check out the places we might want to visit en-route and make up our route accordingly. Seen a lot of great sights this way we would have missed. Most Important is that you are not into a rush to see it all the first time you go somewhere. Do not believe there is enough time to see everything you would like too the first time you go somewhere. We have been retired over 26 yrs. and traveling 8-10 months a year since then doing this method and have just barely scratched the surface of all we would like to see and visit.

John

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Thanks for the suggestions! I keep telling myself once I actually get on the road things will easier.

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Grams,

IMHO it will.

Believe it is simply a matter of "perspective"! To the general public airline passenger it was simply a "safe landing" but to us pilots it was simply a controlled "crash"!

John

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Dice? Darts? Blindfolded with a pin and a tail. Seriously, we keep a list of all the things we want to see and loosely plan around that. All our plans are etched in jello.

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Our plan was to stay in a 70-80 degree temp range..... reality is I went back to work for a company that sends me to south Texas in the summer and northern Oklahoma in the winter.

We do plan on staying in a temperate climate when we can playing it by ear. Lots of rain coming? Slide out of the path... Tornado season, go north-west, Hurricane- go somewhere it doesn't affect.

We also have a list of things to do and events to see when we move to a new area.


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Before DH got a steady job which dictates where and when we need to be (when we had the luxury of being where and when we wanted to be), we used to locate rallies that we wanted to attend and plan our travels around that. Unfortunately, now we have to go where the job takes us.  It's a choice we had to make so that we could pay our bills.  Hopefully someday we'll be able to get back on track for the lifestyle we signed up for.



-- Edited by cherylbrv on Tuesday 19th of April 2016 06:07:12 PM

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Grams wrote:

Thanks gentlemen! I'm overly organized and to take off without a detailed plan is a bit scary for me. The first month may be used to train me how to let go and go with the flow!


 I'm behind you on the timeline to fulltiming, but I, too, have a hard time so far, deciding where to go. There are a gazillion places and only so much time before the snow flies there and we head to Arizona. I'll get a hair about going some place and have freecampsites draw me routes, with campsites close to the route. If I notice a place that piques my interest, we'll just spend a few days discovering. Then some place (the Very Large Array was my trigger) I get all distracted and never finish the trip planning, which consists of freecampsites.net, freedumpsites.net and Gasbuddy.com

Freecamp is a nice but frustrating tool at times. I was trying to plan a trip down the National Trails Highway (A stretch that led into Barstow) but I wanted to stop at the Bagdad cafe and have chicken-dried steak. Freecamp kept sending me around it and finally the part showing the NTH CLOSED in that stretch, so I'd have to detour up 40 until I got past the closed road, picked the NTH at Amboy (quite a place in its own right) and could cruise to the BC.

And of course, any trip to rural New Mexico demands a trip to two places: Pie Town and the Very Large Array. We'll go there as often as we can.

There are so many reasons to go so many places. I know, sometimes we'll go someplace for the trout fishing, another place for majestic scenery, another with quiet, shade and a nice free spot to take a week off and boondock. Oh, and naps. Many naps. And kitties. 

 

 

 

 

 



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We can so appreciate this dilemma ourselves. Which way do you turn when you leave the driveway? Which trip should we do first from our bucket list?

During the working/school years we'd clock 800 to 1000 miles a day travel times to hit our main destinations with very detailed organized itineraries to hand after extensive research. Almost needed a vacation to recoup from the hectic vacation so to speak! I tried once to just "wing it" when time prior to leaving wasn't on my side, and to be honest it wasn't bad but the least enjoyable RV trip ever as per the whole family comments, never to be done again that way.

Whilst we've covered about 47 states and 9 provinces (inc Hawaii & Alaska) in a "fashion" over the past 20 years, we now want to do it all again at a much more leisurely pace (probably our leisurely pace to most is their high speed pace but ......), and cover extensively state by state, province by province as much of interest as we can before the grim reaper makes his final call. Our challenge is that as much as we hear folks say "take your time now retired there's always next year and the next", we are also conscious that there are only "so many next years"! Likewise we have budget constraints like most (thinking fuel here on backtracking), but our biggie is we are only allowed so many days south of our border and our seasons up north here are basically "construction and July".

Our bucket list is immense, and trying to do it all in a logical order, well ........... For sure we thoroughly enjoyed and were wowed initially on our trip last May to the Utah Parks of Bryce, Canyonlands, Arches etc but have to be honest after a few days we were kind of "red rocked out" so to speak. We enjoy a ton of different things and interests in moderation, but also believe you can sometimes have too much of any one good thing, which inadvertently can take the pleasure away. Well for us it does. In the past 20 years we've done the Grand Canyon North and South Rims 3 times, as well helicopter sunset and picnic on the river once (awesome!), and Yellowstone 3 times. We enjoyed each visit because they were spread out over several years, and a few days at each was enough for us personally at the time. We've also done many National and State Parks, but some we'd love to go back and spend a couple extra days and explore more thoroughly.

Hopefully our next trip out next month (we're maxed out for the next 12 months to only 150 days in the USA, so hope we can achieve it), is destination: Texas/Louisiana/Missi' Gulf Coast. Whilst there we hope to do a few stop offs heading south in parts of Nevada and Arizona we've not seen, albeit gone through those states umpteen times. As well we'd like to thoroughly explore New Mexico, Texas, Miss' Natchez Trace, and head back home through East Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma (back south again to go north?), Kansas staying a few days in places of interest as we go through there. Well that's the plan to then enable us to have completed most things of interest to us, west of these and some places such as the Oregon Coast, Washington, California, Colorado, several times but in short bursts during working years.

We like a little history when it's of interesting facts (not boring) and on many facets. Love being on/in the water fishing/kayaking (again after 3 days need a change), walking, cutesy towns for some people watching here and there, Casino evenings with good band entertainment if possible, trying a specific to the area cuisine albeit we aren't big into eating out at all and prefer to take nice picnics everywhere we can. General flora, fauna, wildlife, mountains, easy hikes to waterfalls and the like. Antelope Slot Canyon totally wowed us and we found our guide a minefield of interesting facts and information.

Over many years I've been compiling a spreadsheet broken down into states/provinces then nearby towns/cities and then details of what is nearby of maybe interest to us: attractions/state and national parks/landmarks etc. I've gathered the info for many years, initially from google searches plus various forums/blogs/websites of others I've been following. Now I'm trying to map it logically State by State/Province by Province using our limited presence allowed in the USA, but trying not to have to back track at a future date unnecessarily.

Also because we are not great CG goers, we have a lot of research for boondocking/drycamping locations we do. Just don't like the close proximity in many CG's, the restrictions of having to book good ones too well in advance = prefer to be able to stop extra day or two if we find something else of interest enroute. Sure we enjoy once in a blue moon a wonderful RV Resort stay for a few days (like a vacation from our vacation), but generally are happiest stopping and starting in part as and where we want to.

I typically start researching "must see and do in 'X'" on google or similar search engine, then if anything really catches our eye will Pinterest search it for more info and of course if we've noted a particular blogger has write ups will reference those. For O/Ns we use primarily Freecampsites.net, Casinocamper.org and UltimateCampgrounds.com, and note detail on spreadsheet of potentials. In addition our other go to sites are Sanidumps and Gasbuddy. For initial plotting we'll use Roadtrippers and then for better specifics and the final route use Googlemaps.

For sure it's a doozie to decide what one wants to go and see first, but as they say .......... "The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step".

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