RV trip of US starting in N FL

Old Jun 18th, 2015, 04:00 PM
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RV trip of US starting in N FL

My SO and I are wanting to head west in our new motorhome in August starting in N FL. I've always wanted to see more of the US. We plan on driving west to CA then N to Washington then make our way back. Need help planning our itinerary. Want to see the beautiful sites our country has to offer. Don't care much about being in the cities. More of the national parks and scenic areas we can drive our motorhome. Not pulling a car.
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Old Jun 18th, 2015, 04:27 PM
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And your question(s) is?

>>Want to see the beautiful sites our country has to offer.
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Old Jun 18th, 2015, 04:56 PM
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I am more knowledgeable about the west than I am the east so I'll only be commenting on that part of the trip.

What is the length of your new motorhome and how long do you have.

I'm going to assume you have a lot of time for this trip. Starting in August I would head north first so that you can enjoy places like Yellowstone and Glacier before the snow falls and work your way south. This way you will also avoid the heat of the southwest in August.

The top places to visit on my bucket list would be Rocky Mountain National Park, CO, Mt. Rushmore, SD, Yellowstone & Grand Tetons, WY, Glacier National Park and work your way over to Washington state for Mt. Rainer and Olypmpic National Parks. Working your way south you have the Columbia River Gorge and the many waterfalls, Mt. St. Helen's National Monument and Crater Lake National Park. I'm not that familiar with the coast so I'll let someone else give information on that area.

Depending on when you reach California you might be able to still do Lassen National Park, but Yosemite will be open and beautiful. The waterfalls could be almost dry until the rains begin....if they ever do! We are in bad drought right now. Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks. You don't want to hit Death Valley to early in the fall. October should be ok.

I'd hit the South Rim of the Grand Canyon but if you decide to do the North Rim be aware that it closes mid October. Now on to Utah. Zion National Park, Bryce National Park, scenic Hwy 12 to Torrey, Utah and Capitol Reef National Park. On to Moab, Utah and Canyonlands and Arches National Park. Take Hwy 128 up to I-70 and into Colorado. Take Hwy 50 down to Montrose then drive the Million Dollar Highway to Durango. Make a side trip to Mesa Verde National Park. Head on down to Albuquerque, New Mexico. Take Interstate I-40 and head towards home unless you want to work your way down to Carlsbad Caverns and Big Bend National Parks in Texas.

We can give more detailed information once you decide on your route.

Utahtea
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Old Jun 19th, 2015, 12:57 AM
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That is a great route, Utahtea!

To do this trip before passes start closing in mid-September, you should leave early in August

Go north early, hit SW last. Great advice.

Some of these road may challenge an RV, particularly a large one. You may find campgrounds pretty busy until families with kids start heading home in mid to late August. After that, it will be busiest on weekends.
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Old Jun 19th, 2015, 08:14 AM
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Our motorhome is 30' and we are not towing a car. Those are some great suggestions and I just highlited my map with them all. We are retired so time is not a problem. Just don't want to be traveling in snow or where it is blazing hot.
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Old Jun 19th, 2015, 09:18 AM
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The route Utahtea has suggested is great, and heading north first thing then down the west coast and through the NP's will make for a great trip. Be through Glacier/ Yellowstone/Grand Tetons by the end of September and hopefully miss heavy snow.

If you are old enough get a senior National Park pass at the first NP you go to, it lets you and the others in your vehicle into all national parks, historic sites etc. free, at $10 for a lifetime pass. Otherwise get the regular park pass.

Have a fantastic trip!
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Old Jun 19th, 2015, 10:31 AM
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Got my National Park pass last week. Thanks for all the info. Now just need to figure out route from N FL northerly and then west.
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Old Jun 19th, 2015, 06:40 PM
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jvsnyder2, Our current motorhome is also 30 foot class A with two slides and our first 4 week trip we went to Yellowstone and a few other parks. DH was pretty adamant about not wanting to tow a vehicle but we came home from that trip and bought a Jeep Liberty to tow.

The Class A Winnebago we had for 13 years before that was only 23 1/2 feet and since it didn't have any slides it was easier to just pick up and move every day. We weren't much longer than some full size trucks so we could usually find an easy place to park.

There will be a few places you won't be able to go in your motorhome. Since 2006 when we did that first trip to Yellowstone, they have made a few of the smaller geyser areas off limits for RV's. We found moving up from the smaller motorhome to the longer one meant it was harder to find camping spots that we could fit in when camping in the national parks so now we make reservations in the national parks when we can. Private campground there isn't an issue.

Utahtea
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Old Jun 21st, 2015, 02:34 AM
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I just looked at Google Maps because I thought if you are going all that way, you might as well take in Mt Rushmore and the Black Hills.

Well, guess what, their I 65/ I 90 route takes you right there, and you could perhaps go to the Little Big Horn on the way west.
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Old Jun 21st, 2015, 04:42 AM
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I would definitely tow a vehicle, it would be so much easier to get around when you are in the parks in a car than in your motorhome.

Definitely agree with Utahtea's itinerary. Big Bend is a must-see but without a towed vehicle you won't be able to go up into the mountains. The road is restricted to shorter vehicles.
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Old Jun 21st, 2015, 05:37 PM
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Towing a vehicle isn't an option for us on this trip. Which mountains will we NOT be able to travel without a car? We plan on renting a car when we need it, if practical.
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Old Jun 22nd, 2015, 10:45 AM
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Renting will definitely help you in some cases. Roads you won't be able to take include the Going to the Sun Highway in Glacier National Park but they do have a shuttle system for that.

There will be some roads in Sequoia but most of the main ones will be open to you. http://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisi...strictions.htm and
http://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisi...oftheParks.pdf

In Yellowstone the main roads will be open to you. Your problem will be more with finding a parking spot and a few of the minor roads like to the Petrified Tree, Sheepeater cliffs and the one way Virginia Cascade drive don't allow the larger RV's.

There are some parks I haven't visited with our larger motorhome or recently so there could be other roads you might be restricted on.

You might consider purchasing Mountain Directory West just to help you navagiate some of the moutain roads. This isn't so much for the parks but just the steep mountain roads. We have found this very helpful even though we've traveled these roads many times. http://www.mountaindirectory.com/westmap.html

Utahtea
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