Curious - why are you going Bryce/Zion --> Canyonlands/Arches --> Grand Canyon, when it would seem to be more direct to do Canyonlands/Arches --> Bryce/Zion --> Grand Canyon, and then east to New Mexico?
Back in the 80s/early 90s, I-95 in Jax always seemed to be under construction. First it was the bridge over the St John, then the big swooping turn just south of there past the Baptist Hospital..I made dozens of trips visiting family in Vero Beach and always seemed to hit Jax around noon on the second day. But, by the same token, I finally felt we were in Florida by then, and it felt good, especially during the winter trips.. :) I-295 adds a bunch of miles, but I only took it once or twice. Haven't been down since 2008, so I'm sure things have changed a bit.
Try this link for rest areasI'm not sure how up-to-date that link is. On our trip to Utah and back in Summer of 2012, the Rest Areas along I-80 in Iowa were signed to allow overnight parking. In fact, it was at the R/S in Adair that we decided it was too loud with all the trucks, and moved on to the Walmart in Atlantic, about 40 miles down the road.
I would also recommend 113 over 13 any day of the week, if it's not out of your way. And yes, 202 north out of Wilmington is a bit of a foul up as DelDot rebuilds the 202/I-95 ramps. It's actually worse southbound going into Wilmington, but the situation changes daily.
Are you looking for scenery and side trips, or speed? If you're in no hurry, there are dozens of ways to go north and see the sights, staying off the interstates like 95 and 81. Two that I would use if I wanted to see the sights are US 301 or US 17. I'm sure there are others farther inland as well, but I'm not familiar with them, so I'll let others chime in.
Here's what I've come up with, as a generalization, yet an accurate one. For the most part, grades west of the Mississippi, especially on interstates and good 4-lane federal or state highways, are LONG, but not especially STEEP. They have more room out there to build highways on. In the east, especially along the Appalachians in NC, Tenn, Georgia, and in the Adirondacks and such in New England, some of the grades are, interstates not included, STEEP, but short. There are some grades in West Virginia up near Morgantown that are 7% on an interstate, but they're only a half mile or so long.
So the west has long, shallower grades, and the east has short, steep ones. It's all about how much room there is to build roads. The east is all folded up and narrow, compared to the west. Steeper grades, tighter corners. Hell, there are some bridge off-ramps in the east that are steeper, shorter, and scarier than anything I ever drove out west.
First, get a 1960 Corvette convertible. Second, get in touch with Martin Milner to get a list of all the places he and George Maharis visited from 1960 to 1964...Martin Milner is now 81 years old. No wonder my back hurts."One-Adam 12, see the man, corner of 4th and Maple. Possible 203..." :)
I would actually recommend taking the train to either DC or Philly. Parking (in Philly at least) is a drag, but you can come in by train and get a day pass to ride SEPTA trains, buses, subways and the "EL", which will take you to anything you want to see in the city.This is not a bad suggestion. Amtrak comes right up into Philly at 30th Street Station, which is on the far western side of the center city area along the Schuylkill River, and Indep. Hall/Lib. Bell et cet are all more or less straight across town, down Market Street, along the Delaware. You can almost SEE Constitution Hall from 30th Street. Almost. :) However, it is confusing sometimes, since Philly is one of the few places where the subway runs above ground in spots. Last time I was in C/C (Dec 2011, admittedly) they were tearing up all the underground commuter area under City Hall at 15th/16th Street, so it made it difficult to get around - we kept having to come up to street level and then go back down again.
If you look at a Google Maps of the center city Philly area, you'll see that it's a straight shot from 30th Street Station to Independence Mall - it's actually not all that bad if you just hop a cab, either. I think I/M is between 5th and 6th Street. Much of the 'historical' stuff is down around there to. Back up towards center city is City Hall, The Franklin Institute, the Art Museum/B. F. Parkway, etc.
Traffic is not usually nearly so crazy as I've seen in other large cities, but parking can be expensive, as noted.
That's a big dam' 5er, but thousands of other drivers do the same thing every week, so unless you hit a storm that strands EVERYBODY, you should be fine. The uphills around Eisenhower Tunnel and Vail have at least three lanes, so just stay right, let the cars and cycles pass you, and enjoy the drive. We did it in a 34' 1988 Bounder last year, so if we can do it, anyone can.
And enjoy Glenwood Canyon - but don't blink or you'll miss it - it's only what, about 15 or 16 miles worth?
I just made a trip from North Carolina to Nova Scotia---I found the traffic very heavy on most interstates.
So I wonder bout Interstates in the middle of USA-----Are they as heavenly traveled as the ones near the east coast???As a generalization, and we all know how dangerous they are, I've found that the big difference between eastern Interstates and those say, west of the Ohio River, is that the latter are only 'busy' around the major cities, and once you get out of town, there's a lot less congestion. Interstates in the east, however, are busy along their entire lengths, more or less. It has to do with population density, more than anything. Everybody talked about how bad I-15 south of Salt Lake City would be back in 2012 on our vacation, but it was deserted compared to I-95 between Baltimore and Philly. Even I-70 through Denver at 4:30 PM in the rain was child's play compared to what we normally see here along the East Coast.
I-95 in NJ is the New Jersey Turnpike. Coming from CT you could do it a couple of aways
1) Across T/Zee bridge, down the GS Parkway to I-195, then east across the middle of New Jersey, across the river at around Trenton, then west on the PA Turnpike to Lancaster. This avoids Philly proper, by heading west while you're still north of the city.
2) Across G/W bridge, then South on NJPK to PA and as above
3) West on 80 across north Jersey, hook up with NorthEast extension of PA Turnpike, south on TPK to King of Prussia, then West as above in #1
The NJ Turnpike is rough in spots, but I haven't been on it's northern reaches for a while - they may have repaved a lot. But in general, Jersey roads are crap.
PA's not much better. There's a lot of repaving going on on the North East Extension, but much of it is in the Northbound lanes.
If you're not really familiar with the roads, I'd do #3, only because it's PROBABLY going to be less congested and hectic. The traffic between Newark and Philly on the NJTP can be really....boisterous. :)
Plus, you do NOT want to follow 95 into Philly and then have to head west on the Schuylkill Expressway out to King of Prussia. Not in a 40' with a toad, anyway.
One problem is that the PA Turnpike doesn't go anywhere near Lancaster, which is about 30 miles SOUTH of the TPK.
What you DO NOT want to do is approach Lancaster from the East or West via Route 30. Stoplights and mucho congestion either way.
Check out Google maps and you'll see what I mean.
Both the states and the Feds tax your gasoline. The Fed tax is of course standard across the country, but the state taxes vary considerably. Here in New Jersey, we have a low state tax, compared to our neighbors, which is why gas here in my county is a dime or so lower per gallon than just across the river in Delaware or Pennsylvania. I pay in the range of $3.32 to $3.39 per gallon as of August 2013. Our lone interstate down here (I-295 from the Del Mem Bridge to Philly) is not too bad, and the NJTP that more or less parallels it is OK. But the closer you get to Philly, the worse the roads get. The AC Expressway from Philly to Atlantic City is crappy near Philly, but then gets smooth as silk for about 40 miles to the shore. The ACE does NOT get a huge amount of truck traffic either, which I think must acccount for a lot of wear and tear. I appreciate the fact that trucks deliver our daily lives, for the most part, but they can really tear up a road. Especially one built by the lowest bidder.
I kind of disappeared with all the planning, but wanted to sincerely thank all of you for advice, routing, etc.! The trip was amazing, to say the least.
But what a trip! As we traveled, I thought of all the advice and help that you all gave so freely and felt bad that I just kind of fell off the face of the earth here. Thank you all! I hope to be a regular here so I can give back when I can. If anyone is interested, there's more detail in my blog - I was able to keep up with it on a pretty regular basis despite the broadband issues we came across everywhere!
Travel safe & light!Sound like a great time. Reminded me of my family's trip around the horn in 1964, when I was eleven - six of us in a VW Bus with three tents and a Coleman stove... :)
Will check the blog for pics.
Just the kinds of responses I wanted to get - good, bad, "you're nuts", "why didn't I think of that", et celery...
I will probably end up going with one of those 'Fantastic Fans' Endless Breeze models, as recommended by RyanAllie1, as it gets great reviews and seems to be a quality product.
Now, on to the turbonator and gas line magnets... :)
I appreciate the quick responses! I can understand the "no" votes, as I didn't see any whirly-bird type ventilation fans offered by any RV/Camping Equipment manufacturers anywhere on the web, so it doesn't look like any of the "formally trained" outlets have them. I know they move a lot of air, as they're designed to move hot air out of a house attic, not a 30x8x8 RV shoebox. The ones offered by Lemanco are the kind I was thinking of, and they offer an 8" version that seems like it would be more than enough.
My 88 Bounder does not move a lot of air even with all three roof vents and the windows wide open. Plus, my idea was more on the lines of the last post by Golden_HVAC for a way to move air out of the RV when its parked, without using any juice. If it spins while we're going down the road, that's a benefit, but it's the STATIONARY movement I'm most interested in. I'll do some more investigation.
BTW, the Lemanco whirlybirds are guaranteed to 110mph winds, so it doesn't seem that 50 or 60mph down the road would be all that outlandish. And they're guaranteed forever... :)
Anyone ever thought of, used, or has seen an RV roof vent/fan styled like the turbine attic fans you put in house attics? I was just pondering on life and such, and thought that if you could mount a suitably-sized fan on the roof, it would help exhaust warm air on those days when running the AC just isn't kosher, and even when stopped, the wind would move it enough to pull air out of the RV/trailer, negating the need to use the DC vent fans many of us have. One might have to work up some sort of locking mechanism, so as not to suck the cat up out of the thing when you're doing 80 MPH or so, but I would think a small, 6- to 10-inch diameter turbine might be quite a possibility.
Engineers and/or more wise and worldly listeners are welcome to debunk this theory. What am I not considering?
OP has Millville as home base, which is in Cumberland County, midway between the Delaware River and Atlantic City - to get to I-76 and/or I-81 from where he is would not be very straightforward. That part of NJ has little in the way of fast thruways anywhere - Millville is a good 45 mins to an hour just to the Delaware Memorial Bridge, I-95 or the NJ Turnpike. From farther north in Jersey where you can get to I-195 and across the Delaware at the PA Turnpike, it's different but from down south, it's not so cut and dried.
Small inconvenience compared to wrangling an RV in the madhouse beltway of DC.
I agree, which I why I suggested 301 or 13. It was others who suggested I-76 (the PA Turnpike) and I-81, which does not compare favorably to the eastern route alternatives. In addition, the OP is going to Smithfield, which is right on I-95. For him to use I-81 and I-77 is like going from Chicago to St Louis by way of Minneapolis. Now if he was headed to the Smokies, that would be MUCH different.
So it's 5 to 2 in favor of the PA Turnpike. Either way, the real slow part will be between H'burg and Gettysburg. 30 around Gettysburg is usually very congested, if memory serves. Last time I was there was 1984. Here's a thought - if you're headed back home after, split the difference - TP there, and 30 home. And then report back here on experiences and warnings. :)