We are leaving this Saturday to watch grand-kids at a track meet and then travel to visit friends and family. We plan on crossing @ Sumas, WA Apr 29th and be in Anchorage by May 7th.
We wanted to go last year, but things happen. We were not going this year but I got a summer job with the Forest Service at the Portage Glacier. Really would make that much money but it will pay for our trip, like a working vacation.
Work for three weeks, fly home for grandson's graduation. Fly back and work till Sep 18th, then have a great road trip back home.
Hope to see some of you on the way or in Alaska. Have a great summer I'm sure we will too.
Wow. What a wonderful summer gig!
We are currently near Leavenworth, Washington and plan to cross in the next three weeks. Gotta finish off some of the wine first! Not sure if we are crossing in Oroville or Sumas. Anyone know which might be preferable?
I use ones made by command strips (3M). They make a soap dish, a toothbrush holder, shampoo holder, etc. I thought the shampoo holder would be too heavy but its been on for a couple of weeks with no problems. The toothbrush and soap holders have been in place for 8 months. Thinking of doing the same for spices and a paper towel holder...
Sometimes, we drive one hour and other times we drive ten. It depends more on the weather, the road, and the traffic than on anything else. Too much of bad roads, weather, or other drivers make a one hour drive seem like 10. We really count it more by miles than hours. Today we will drive 110 miles. Last week we drove 195 miles. Our shortest jump was 36 miles. Our longest was 420 miles. The 110 miles today will probably take better than three hours - traffic, stop lights, slow roads...
We LIKE to drive from one place of interest to another. We hope they are close together but sometimes we get a wild hair and like a change of scenery.
We have the 33C, which is almost the same as the 35K without the extra 1/2 bath.
The fold out seat is not any harder than the non-fold out seat. With the front sofa FP, you loose the end table next to the couch (there is also an outlet there, which we use for the lamp on the table).
Since it is mostly just the two of us, we love the floorplan. We can both watch tv without craning our neck to one side or the other. We use one of the dinette drawers for shoe storage so they aren't all over the place and in the way and so we don't track mud and dirt through the coach.
The fridge is completely accessible as the L part folds into the rest of the sofa. We travel as much as we sit and the only inaccessible things on our rig when closed up are the bottom cabinet and drawers in the bedroom and the underbed storage.
We have had 4 people in our rig and the conversation flowed just fine. We have had 7 people in the rig and that worked too, with the front seats turned around. Also, because the tv is angled, most every seat has a view on game day. With the tv against the wall in front, viewing is a little more awkward.
The rear sofa FP actually has a longer slide; therefore, more floor space, not less.
We love our floor plan. After looking at almost every floorplan in existence, we wouldn't change anything about the one we have. One of the benefits of a separate area 'over there' is that, like now, I can work at my desk (the passenger seat with pull out desk) while DH is back in the 'pit' watching tv and playing video games. We have 'separate spaces' to do our own thing while in 34' of living space. Cozy but perfect.
We fulltime. We are under 65. We do not have 'work insurance.' We make too much to get 'Obamacare.' We purchased our health insurance directly from Blue Cross. How much it costs per month is dependent on what state you live in and how old you are. Of course, our ability to get insurance at all is directly related to 'Obamacare.' Whether that means it is or isn't 'Obamacare' would be for you to decide.
If one is dry camping at a camp ground, one can use the toilets and/or shower there, extending your length of stay by days - potentially up to the 14 day limit.
If one is boondocking, one is limited by the size of one's fresh water tank. Our fresh water tank is 85 gallons. We can stay 8 days if we are conservative and don't add water while there (we carry a five gallon tank portable tank).
We travel with our fresh water tank at least 2/3 full all the time. We have never had any problems. The problem people typically encounter with traveling with full tanks is the weight limit/cargo capacity of the rig - as long as we travel with less than 100 gallons (800 lbs) between our various tanks, we are not over weight. TTs often have a lower cargo capacity and so are more sensitive to the weight of the water.
Typically, we go 5-7 days between dumps. Even with full hook ups, we try not to dump until 2/3s full, minimum.
The Dometic fridge problem was on some 1997-2006 2 door models. Our 4 door 1360 keeps ice cream just fine.
When we purchased our rig, one of the deciding factors was having a propane fridge. We did not want to rely on electric only.
We have 600W of solar with 440AH AGM batteries and a 1200W pure sine inverter. And we still don't want an electric only fridge. We do not want to run the generator for an hour or two a day just for the fridge, we don't want to have to plug in or drive to keep the batteries charged for the fridge, we don't want to constantly have to monitor our batteries and conserve power just to run a fridge.
We had 4 days of rain recently in Oregon. We didn't have to worry about running the generator to keep our food cold - the propane did that. And we didn't have to conserve power to keep the fridge running - we did what we wanted. It all comes down to what your priorities are. Not having to listen to the generator is one of ours.
We have Escapees, PPA, Good Sam, and Thousand Trails.
Before we went fulltime, when we took long trips, PPA and Escapees came in handy and paid for themselves. Our first year fulltiming, PPA saved us $500+. Escapees also saved us quite a bit. We only used Good Sam rarely but it has probably paid for itself.
We stay mostly in public parks which don't offer discounts but need FHU about once per week which is where PPA comes in handy.
Thousand Trails - we were given a Zone Pass for free when we bought our rig. We have used it for three days so far and plan about 6 more days before it expires. We will not renew. All of their parks are also in PPA. If we stayed in the same place for a couple of weeks, it would probably be a better value. at $500/year for one zone, it just doesn't pay for itself.
Escapees is a club that offers much more than just campgrounds. But, if all you are interested in is campgrounds, they have two, which are quite nice, in California. One is about 25 miles from Yosemite and you can't beat the price for the location.
I'll just add my $.02 regarding the Pathway X2. I've had one for about 2 years and I'm really pleased with it. One of the selling points was that it has a larger antenna than the Tailgater making it easier to acquire and maintain connection with the satellites. I can't confirm that but can attest to the ease with which it sets up. It's also a bit larger than the Tailgater so it requires a bit more storage space. Hope this helps.
Our Pathway X2 gets signal more often than our road trip mission even when the two are right next to each other. The availability of two sets of satellites makes finding signal in treed areas much easier.
Honestly, if I were in the market for a MH and I saw an ad for a used MH that had non-working components, I probably wouldn't go look at it or even think about buying it unless it was way underpriced to comparable MHs (kind of like the real estate market). My thought would be, if this part/component doesn't work and they aren't bothering to fix it, what other part/component doesn't work that I won't know about until it is too late? I would think it wasn't well cared for. Not that any of that would be true but, with so many RVs on the market, I probably wouldn't bother with the listing.
They won't let me live there, but I spend as much time as I can between October and February when I'm in the area. Probably my favorite state park. We always try to get a beachfront site. We don't care too much for the sites in the back and tend to stay away from them.
In Tennessee - Cherokee National Forest
In VA - George Washington National Forest
In West Virginia - Monongahela National Forest
In Maryland - Green Ridge State Forest
In West Virginia, I highly recommend the Dolly Sods and Spruce Knob areas.
In Virginia, I recommend the Grayson Highlands area
In Tennessee, I recommend the area around Roan Mountain and Unicoi.
Enjoy the trip!
"ReserveAmeraica says they have spots for 31’. Does anyone remember spites that might be a little more generous and fit a 34’?"
We were in the area last month. The problem we found is that it isn't the sites that will limit you, it is the roads and the trees. We found a few sites in which we would fit comfortably but would be difficult to get to. And they were all taken anyway. Between the low clearances, un-level sites, and awkward entry angles, two or three days wasn't worth the hassle and potential damage.
first: we spend a ton of cash for our coach so we can have awesome camping vacations, and then DW wants to take vacations doing everything but camping.
If this is true, then for her, camping is not a vacation. What do you do on vacation that you don't do camping? Eat out more? Tour places? Shop? You might try doing that more while in the RV so it is more like her idea of a vacation. If she is doing the same stuff camping that she is at home - cooking, cleaning, etc. - it is kind of understandable that it isn't 'vacation.'
We bought our rig new in August of 2014. The 2015's were arriving on the lot so dealers wanted to get rid of 2014s. The dealer we bought from made an offer we couldn't refuse: less than a used 2013 or 2014 (we didn't look at used 2012s or older). I just checked the NADA used low retail for our rig: still more than we paid for it. I looked at RVTrader. There are 3 for sale in our price range; all are older than ours.
To get the best deal, we waited until the new model year was shipping and then we sent inquiries to 10 dealers for the final best price the dealership could offer. We took the second best price as it was within the distance we wanted to drive. Don't assume that you will get a better deal buying used. Financing costs more for used rigs and you will still have to pay sales tax in many states.
From Great Smoky Mountains National Park head north to Shenandoah National Park (and there are caves such as Luray if you like them). From there, head north to PA to visit Gettysburg and the other battlefields. Go Southeast from there to visit DC. Go south again to visit Williamsburg. Maybe hit Virginia Beach. Then go home.
Or, after Shenandoah, go into West Virginia. Visit Harper's Ferry. Maybe stop in Canaan Valley. Then head to Lexington in Kentucky, then off to Mammoth Caves.
It really depends on what you like.
It depends on what you will be doing when you get to your campsite.
If you are touring in towns and getting groceries, tow the prius.
If you will be going out on trails, off road, and generally where a lesser vehicle couldn't go (the reason to own a jeep), tow the jeep.
Take a really hard look at how you actually travel now. I know a lot of people who own a jeep that has never been off pavement. If you aren't an off-road person, I think you would be happier with the prius. And you would save a lot in gas. If you are on off road person, I am surprised you are asking...
For us, there is no question - Jeep rules. We only purchased a class A so we could tow a jeep.