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Old 12-25-2013, 11:32 AM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Florida & Minnesota
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Planning the first "Big One"... and Merry Christmas.

First off, Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you're enjoying time with family and friends, and making memories that last a lifetime.

While many of our friends to the South are still enjoying their coaches, most of us up North have no choice but to winterize our RVs and think about trips for the next "season", when the mercury gets above 32. My DW and I are putting together a 25-day, 5,000 mile trip that will take us through 14 states. Multi-day stops include Santa Fe, the Grand Canyon, Napa and Cheyenne.

This will easily be the longest trip I've taken in our coach. My question is this: Are there any things that are necessary to plan for while taking a longer trip that I might be forgetting about since I'm used to shorter trips?

Thanks for your input!

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Old 12-25-2013, 11:34 AM   #2
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Money! Youroo!!

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Old 12-25-2013, 12:28 PM   #3
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I'm sure others with experience will provide valuable feedback but at first glance 5,000 miles in 25 days seem like a lot but then I haven't wander far from home yet. Based on previous feedback on similar discussions don't forget to give yourself enough time to rest up and enjoy the trip.

Great choice for "Living within my means" and camping for one...

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Old 12-25-2013, 01:34 PM   #4
Join Date: Dec 2013
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I did a 6200 mile trip last summer 2013 and what I found was I needed more time for certain locations like Sea World and Disney Land. My wife had a great time watching the landscapes etc but truth be told, I had very little time to watch and look while towing our big 5ver. I would plan for more time at certain stops. As for money, it comes and goes so let it rip and get out and see the things that you would never or normally go see. You never know you might meet some crazy Canadian family of 5 doing the same again in 2014!!! Sorry we are going to Florida this time..
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Old 12-25-2013, 05:03 PM   #5
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Fill up your Blue DEF tank, if you drive a Diesel. Check all trailer hitch joints, clean and lube according to the mfg. Make sure you have a tool for every nut and bolt, screwdrivers as well. Consider the fact you may incur unanticipated tolls - a few accept credit cards. Do NOT hide extra cash in your freezer! Find a better place - that one's so obvious! Most of all, stop driving when you're tired. Be safe and have a wonderful trip!
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Old 12-25-2013, 05:50 PM   #6
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I envy you. My wife and I have been talking about taking a long trip for the past year. But we finally decided to stay close to home in 2014 and we have planned 6 different short trips instead of one big trip. My only suggestion is to take your time and enjoy the trip. Do not plan too many miles in one day. Stop often and spend several nights at different locations so that you can rest up. But above all Enjoy the trip. Also please keep us inform of your trip. You have mentioned some of the places that we intend to go in 2015. But we are talk about staying gone about three months so that we can really enjoy the different locations that we visit. As far as money, You can't take it with you so enjoy it while you can.

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Old 12-26-2013, 09:59 AM   #7
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I've tried to account for not driving too far. Longest days are less than 500 miles, most around 350-450 miles. Almost all driving between stops is on Interstates, so should be smooth sailing if there isn't too much construction. I've scheduled things so I don't have more than two days of back to back driving before staying at a place for at least one full day: This is a vacation, not punishment.

I appreciate the input about tools. I have some basic skills about mechanical things, but I'm more of a carpenter than a mechanic, so we'll be stopping at a shop if something happens requiring more than a screwdriver or socket set.

This is our long trip for next year. Most will be under 2,000 miles during 13-17 days, so much less driving and more relaxing. But, that's the problem with living in the upper Midwest - you have to drive a LONG WAY to get to the coasts or warm weather much of the year.

Thanks much for the input!
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Old 12-26-2013, 10:20 AM   #8
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One thing we found helpful for long trips is to roughly map out the route and have some firm plans/reservations (i.e. the Grand Canyon), but then to also leave a few of the one night stops along the way open so we had the flexibility to stop where we found something interesting, or found a place that looked inviting. Finding those un-known spots along the way has proven to be some of our most enjoyable stops.

And in this day of web sites and on-line bookings, we have found the opposite to be true as well. We reserved at a couple of can't-miss places based on their websites and couldn't have been more disappointed when we arrived.

In busy seasons and on weekends, sometimes you have to have reservations to get a spot, but it can be fun to leave a few weeknight stop overs open to discovery...

And for a 25 day trip, I don't think there is too much to worry about with the RV (other than basic maintenance), but there can be a lot to plan for and take care of at home so that the house is all set. But in this day of on-line banking/bill paying and smart phones that turn the heat down at home, technology sure has made it easier to manage those things...

Enjoy your trip!

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Old 12-27-2013, 08:47 AM   #9
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I'll let you know how things go, Dakota EV. We're really looking forward to this trip. At the Grand Canyon stop we will be kenneling our dogs for the day so we can take the train to the Canyon from Williams, AZ. We're also spending several days in Napa, CA. Should be a lot of fun!

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