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Forget the war for a moment (if you can): is the big drought affecting your travel plans?

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Forget the war for a moment (if you can): is the big drought affecting your travel plans?

Old Mar 12th, 2003, 07:18 AM
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Forget the war for a moment (if you can): is the big drought affecting your travel plans?

I know many people are shelving overseas travel plans due to worries about the impending war...but on the home front, is the severe drought across much of the U.S. affecting your U.S. travel plans?
We live overseas, so we don't know how bad the drought really is, but from what we see on the news, it looks pretty bad. Are people planning to curtail camping trips, for example, because I imagine that no campfire rules will go into effect early. Are low water levels causing people to cancel things like river rafting trips? A couple of our German relatives are considering a summer trip to the West, but now are wondering if many of the things they would like to do--i.e., camping--would be severely restricted.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 07:27 AM
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Hi BT,
Just this morning I was reading about the danger of wildfires being great again this year.
although I never consider these things when planning trips, it might be a cause for concern if going to Yellowstone or one of the really big parks out west.
It only impacts us here by water restrictions.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 07:32 AM
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the west is a big place, so even if there are fires of tens of thousands of acres, they affect only a small area.

Last year we toured 9 western states and were unaffected by the drought.

If you are camping, open fires are likely to be restricted.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 07:39 AM
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I'm not sure of the problems in the west, but I'd bet the threat of wild fires has some people scared. In the upper midwest, or at least Wisconsin, has taken a huge hit this winter because we haven't had any snow. We were 26 inches below normal here at the beginning of March. We've had a few inches since then but no where near enough to erase a deficit like that. The travel industry that relies on snowmobilers/x-country skiers/etc. in the northern part of the state is really suffering.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 07:41 AM
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I think bigtyke has it right. We live in the northeast (the drought is REALLY over here!), and have traveled out west 2 times in the last 10 years. We've had to make minor adjustments to our plans on each trip because of fires. It's just a fact of life out west, althought some years ARE worse than others.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 07:56 AM
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Having spent August in the Berkshire Mts of Mass, I can tell you that the fire danger and drought did affect us. Going to climb along side a waterfall and finding it was gone/dried up for a while. Wanting to go hiking in a state park finding it closed, fear of fires being set by cigarettes etc. I would think twice before making plans where the fear of fires might curtail some of the activities that I had planned on.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 08:14 AM
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The drought isn't, but the gas prices sure are! We had planned a R/T circle from Sacramento, CA to San Diego, to Las Vegas, and then home. We've completely changed our plans now.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:08 AM
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Speaking for SW Colorado, We're expecting a more normal summer than we had last year. We had good snow in January and February, which has brought us up to about 80% of normal in terms of snowpack, much better than last year at this time.

While the reservoirs will take years to fill up again, the increased moisture in the soil will lessen the chance of forest fires as severe as those of 2002. I'm assuming (uh oh) that there will be parts of the state without fire restrictions, especially if we get our usual heavy snows during March and April.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:50 AM
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Thanks, all.
Gas prices are not something that would bother our relatives--remember, Europeans are already used to much higher gas prices, about $5-6 a gallon.
They were planning to do a camping/dude ranch/rafting trip, but aren't sure now.
I remember a drought and heat spell in southeastern PA in the 1990s. Bad enough that the leaves were falling off the trees before they could even begin to turn, or the droopy, thirsty gardens, or the brown lawns--the worst was the hordes of really ticked off yellow jackets! It was impossible to have any kind of food or drink outdoors without attracting a crowd of yellow jackets in a MEAN mood--someone inevitably got stung.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:50 AM
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Vorager, Why change your plans for an additional $60.00 or so in addtional gas costs? Your direct round trip is about 1400 miles. If your car gets 25 mpg, you are using 56 gallons. However much more per gallon gasoline is now, as opposed to when you planned the trip, times 56 is your additional cost.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 11:42 AM
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What drought?
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 11:50 AM
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I live in San Francisco, and every year in the news: in winter - rains and mudslides, in summer - heat and drought. I'm so used to it by now, don't even pay attention to it any longer.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 02:00 PM
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BTilke, tell them to take the trip anyway! As others have said, the west is so huge that even if there are problems in one area, you can easily find somewhere else that's unaffected.

I live in Durango. During most of the Missionary Ridge Fire, I was able to enjoy outdoor activities just a few miles away.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 02:18 PM
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I'm with Nina: What drought? Since we eastcoasters don't know much about it, I'd say it's definitely not affecting our travel plans!
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:38 PM
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The California drought almost canned our Hawaii trip last summer because we had a forest fire burning within a few miles from our house. It was like a war zone and we were told that evacuation could happen at any minute.
We were due to leave for Hawaii 2 mornings later, but weren't sure if we should pack our snorkel gear or all our valuables instead!

Whatever you do, please be careful with fire!
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:48 PM
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Hey-thanks for the great responses East-coasterners...obviously your small part of the country wasn't involved in the massive drought that BTilke posted about in the first place so save the responses. 2 years from now someone from Colorado (as I am) will write off your drought or flood or whatever in ignorance and you will be as annoyed as I am.
Back to topic...we are experiencing y0 degree weather this week in NE Colorado-loving the heat, hoping for more snow before June. Affecting travel plans? Never-where do you live overseas you lucky dog?
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:51 PM
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well, thats supposed to be 70 degree weahter...
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:52 PM
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oh jeez...w-e-a-t-h-e-r
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