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Old 01-28-2021, 09:55 PM   #1
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Traveling to (and around) the East Coast

So the time has FINALLY come for the wife and I to start doing what we bought our Georgetown XL378 for, and that's travel! We are planning a trip from Clovis CA (Central Valley) to the East coast, with the hope of getting to Maine. The plan is to leave late March, early April and take the southern route, basically from Clovis to Carlsbad Caverns, San Antonio, New Orleans, then up to Gettysburg where we will stay for an undetermined amount of time while visiting DC and all the surrounding area. From there we would like to get up to the northern East Coast, spend time, then start working our way back through the Great Lakes area, and some of the "fly over" states working our way back through the Dakotas and ultimately home.
This will be our largest undertaking to date. We have however done a few longish trips to Yellowstone, South Dakota, Colorado, stuff like that. I'm comfortable with the planning right up to the actual driving on the East Coast. I get don't try to go through NYC, Philly or Boston with the motorhome dragging a toad. But being from the West, we're used to hundreds of miles of open driving (We don't do LA either)
Does anyone have thoughts on how the best way to navigate from the Gettysburg area to say Maine? Particular highways to avoid? Places to stay? We typically will do 350-400 miles a day. But that's out here where everything seems to be a bit more spread out. Am I making to much out of it?

Yeah, I know, long post, and a pretty general question...
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Old 01-28-2021, 10:11 PM   #2
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You're going to go from driving hundreds of miles between destinations to destinations that will seem closer together. Camping spaces can be much smaller than you normally use and more difficult to get reservations. We've driven the east coast, but never did hit Maine. It's been several years since we've been in that area, so I don't have any places to recommend.

We towed a trailer and at 40', we found the roads in town (any town) were a challenge. We're used to driving in the west. It was more convenient to find a campground central to the places we wanted to see, park the trailer and then drive the truck there. Avoid the 'Parkways' in New York State. They are made for cars and trucks and rvs are prohibited.

That sounds like a great trip.
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Old 01-29-2021, 11:01 AM   #3
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I grew up on the East Coast and traveled all over, but moved West 50 years ago. Choosing your routes is important. You can go around the big cities, but the density is totally different than the West. I would be willing to pay some tolls for access to turnpikes and the better highways. I do not know anything about the rules for RVs.

Stay on the rural highways when you can. North of Boston the density thins out. Maine is one of the only places east of the Mississippi River I miss. That and Chesapeake Bay.
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Old 01-29-2021, 12:47 PM   #4
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I can highly recommend Gunstock Mountain in NH. In the summer it’s an RV resort where you can zip line, off road Segway, treetop adventure, etc. Check out their web site: https://www.gunstock.com/
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Old 01-29-2021, 03:21 PM   #5
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I believe there are a lot of COVID travel restrictions in place on the east coast. Please check each state before you get there for quarantine restrictions. We hope they ease up before spring, but you never know. Have a safe trip.
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Old 01-29-2021, 03:42 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Mooney 78865 View Post
Does anyone have thoughts on how the best way to navigate from the Gettysburg area to say Maine? Particular highways to avoid? Places to stay? We typically will do 350-400 miles a day.
Yes I do. In the past 5 years, we twice traveled from Richmond, Va., to and through upstate New York then again to Maine, NH and Vermont. I spent months picking the brains of folks on this forum and several others. I'd be glad to share all this with you.
PM me.
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Old 01-29-2021, 03:52 PM   #7
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I live in Southern Maryland and would suggest that you avoid I95 whenever you can anywhere around Richmond, Washington, Baltimore, etc. I think you would find the trip more enjoyable if you traveled I81, I83, and 15. They will take you through the Shenadoah valley and north to Gettysburg. Keep in mind that Gettysburg is several hours north of Washington, DC.
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Old 01-29-2021, 04:08 PM   #8
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This sounds like an excellent trip! Gettysburg is fantastic, and it is haunted!!
From Gettysburg you could head towards Lancaster, Pa. to get into the old Amish Country. From there you could head north on Rt. 81 towards Scranton, Pa., then head east through the Pocono Mountains on Rt. 84 to Rt. 9w. Rt 9w will take you north along the Hudson River where you can get into the Shawungunk mountains near New Paltz, NY and Catskill mountains near Woodstock, NY. From there you would have easy access to the Berkshires in Massachusetts, Green mountains in Vermont, White Mountains in NH, then the coast of Maine. Try to get into Nova Scotia if possible!
On the way home, plan a week to camp in the Finger Lakes area in Central NY. The extensive wine country there is a rival to California that lacks the commercialism associated with Napa Valley. From there heading around the Great Lakes you can get to the Black Hills....
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Old 01-29-2021, 04:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mooney 78865 View Post
So the time has FINALLY come for the wife and I to start doing what we bought our Georgetown XL378 for, and that's travel! We are planning a trip from Clovis CA (Central Valley) to the East coast, with the hope of getting to Maine. The plan is to leave late March, early April and take the southern route, basically from Clovis to Carlsbad Caverns, San Antonio, New Orleans, then up to Gettysburg where we will stay for an undetermined amount of time while visiting DC and all the surrounding area. From there we would like to get up to the northern East Coast, spend time, then start working our way back through the Great Lakes area, and some of the "fly over" states working our way back through the Dakotas and ultimately home.
This will be our largest undertaking to date. We have however done a few longish trips to Yellowstone, South Dakota, Colorado, stuff like that. I'm comfortable with the planning right up to the actual driving on the East Coast. I get don't try to go through NYC, Philly or Boston with the motorhome dragging a toad. But being from the West, we're used to hundreds of miles of open driving (We don't do LA either)
Does anyone have thoughts on how the best way to navigate from the Gettysburg area to say Maine? Particular highways to avoid? Places to stay? We typically will do 350-400 miles a day. But that's out here where everything seems to be a bit more spread out. Am I making to much out of it?

Yeah, I know, long post, and a pretty general question...



Yes. From Gettysburg, get to I-81 and run that to Scranton PA. There you have a choice-you can take I-84 across the lower portion of NY into CT and then up to the MA pike (I-90) or you can take I-88 to Albany NY and then get on the MA pike. Take the MA pike to I 290 in Worcester and then to I 495 to I 95 through NH and Maine (where the interstate turns to gravel.....just kidding). In Maine, take I-95 to Portland and get on I-290 up to Brunswick and then spend some time driving along US 1 north. Make sure you get up to Bar Harbor and if you have the time and the border is open, a day trip from BH to Campobello is a great day. When you head home, drive across Maine and the Western mountains toward North Conway NH and take either US 302 or the Kanc and work your way to VT. There is a great campground on Hero Island VT (just outside of Burlington) called Champlain Resort Adult Campground (it's not kinky-just adults and no kids) and from there you can take the ferry across Lake Champlain to I 87 and either go north to Montreal or south to the NY thruway (I-90).



Hope you enjoy New England.



Oh-make sure you get an EZ Pass-many of the roads have electronic tolling and do not have toll collectors.....
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Old 01-29-2021, 05:19 PM   #10
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I usually travel from Boston Massachusetts area to Gettysburg Pennsylvania by way of Route 90. Routing is similar to what Villagerjjm & Campah stated.

I usually travel around Boston via 495 then to Route 90.
From there I follow Route 84 to 78 then to 81 for Gettysburg Pa.
(directions written reverse from your direction of travel)

FYI in your case, the 495 route will take you around Boston then connect you to Route 95, just shy of the New Hampshire border. From there you can follow Route 95 north into Maine.

Good Luck
Stay Safe
Enjoy your Travels
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Old 01-29-2021, 05:26 PM   #11
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Find your way up to I-81 North. Stay on I-81 to Binghamton, NY. In Binghamton take I-88 to the Albany, NY area, I-88 is very quiet and scenic.
Get on I-90 in the Albany area and head east. The most congestion you'll find anywhere is going around the Boston area. No way to avoid that unless you take state highways from Albany into southern VT and NH then into Maine to avoid Boston. You won't travel as quickly, but definitely less hassle. Outside of the major cities, the northeast is scenic and quiet.
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Old 01-29-2021, 05:29 PM   #12
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Yes. From Gettysburg, get to I-81 and run that to Scranton PA. There you have a choice-you can take I-84 across the lower portion of NY into CT and then up to the MA pike (I-90) or you can take I-88 to Albany NY and then get on the MA pike. Take the MA pike to I 290 in Worcester and then to I 495 to I 95 through NH and Maine (where the interstate turns to gravel.....just kidding). In Maine, take I-95 to Portland and get on I-290 up to Brunswick and then spend some time driving along US 1 north. Make sure you get up to Bar Harbor and if you have the time and the border is open, a day trip from BH to Campobello is a great day. When you head home, drive across Maine and the Western mountains toward North Conway NH and take either US 302 or the Kanc and work your way to VT. There is a great campground on Hero Island VT (just outside of Burlington) called Champlain Resort Adult Campground (it's not kinky-just adults and no kids) and from there you can take the ferry across Lake Champlain to I 87 and either go north to Montreal or south to the NY thruway (I-90).



Hope you enjoy New England.



Oh-make sure you get an EZ Pass-many of the roads have electronic tolling and do not have toll collectors.....
Excellent advice! We make the trip to Mount Desert Island from MD every year, and it may be the best of the East Coast. Sadly, the highways you will travel leave something to be desired as far as upkeep is concerned, so watch for potholes, etc. Just a few other cautions: Campobello is in Canada, and at least this year they don't want us and our plague. Maine (and CT and MA and NY) also had restrictions this year, so be sure to check before you finalize your plans. Route 1 in Maine is indeed very scenic; but the roads are pretty narrow and crowded for a big RV - might be better to stay in the Freeport area and tour that part of Route 1 without the RV. Good luck with the trip - it will be fantastic if the travel restrictions aren't too bad.
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Old 01-29-2021, 05:37 PM   #13
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Id recommend Drummer Boy Campground in Gettysburg. Great for big rigs.

I live 1 1/2 hrs East from Gettysburg and this was our route to Bar Harbor Maine a couple of years ago. 78-287-87-84-90-495-95.

Fire away with any questions.
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Old 01-29-2021, 06:33 PM   #14
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Well I'd suggest that you think about seeing Western NY State in the finger lakes region AND Niagra Falls which is as spectacular as can be. You COULD do this on the way home from Maine by taking the NYS Northway and Thruway west . I like heading north to Maine on the Thruway from north of NYC...then you could stop at Lake George and Fort Ticonderoge or Lake Champlain before crossing over Vermont and NH...to Maine. Route 2 would put you all the way across into Northern Maine and Acadia (don't miss the Schoodic Penninsula) and then you can work your way south on the Maine coast through all the wonderful towns to Portland. (Belfast, Rockland, Rockport, Camden, Boothbay Harbor and Bath are not to be missed and Freeport to see the LL Bean original store. Portland is a nice small city worthy of some time and from there you can begin the road back home by heading south on 95 to Portsmouth NH and then back west across southern NH and Vt (Rt. 4 and 9)... or stay on 95 and run to the Mass Turnpike for a speedier route west and the Berkshires & historic towns. Alternatively...staying on 95 will let you pack on the miles if you're looking for a more southerly route home...but I'd avoid it for a more westerly or southwesterly hookup with the major highways west. Have a great trip and leave some lobster for the rest of us!
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Old 01-29-2021, 09:14 PM   #15
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WOW!!
Thanks everyone! Guess I'll have to get the atlas out of the motorhome, throw on a pot and have the wife sit down with me to get things going.
Her deal is Gettysburg, after that she's up for pretty much what ever comes. Neither one of us has been to the East Coast ever, so we are really looking forward to the journey.
I'll post up what the tentative route will be as thing progress. Any more thoughts, post 'em, they are appreciated.
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Old 01-29-2021, 09:16 PM   #16
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This sounds like an excellent trip! Gettysburg is fantastic, and it is haunted!!
From Gettysburg you could head towards Lancaster, Pa. to get into the old Amish Country. From there you could head north on Rt. 81 towards Scranton, Pa., then head east through the Pocono Mountains on Rt. 84 to Rt. 9w. Rt 9w will take you north along the Hudson River where you can get into the Shawungunk mountains near New Paltz, NY and Catskill mountains near Woodstock, NY. From there you would have easy access to the Berkshires in Massachusetts, Green mountains in Vermont, White Mountains in NH, then the coast of Maine. Try to get into Nova Scotia if possible!
On the way home, plan a week to camp in the Finger Lakes area in Central NY. The extensive wine country there is a rival to California that lacks the commercialism associated with Napa Valley. From there heading around the Great Lakes you can get to the Black Hills....
So what your saying is that the Governor didn't shut down all of the wineries due to Covid...except his?
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Old 01-29-2021, 09:17 PM   #17
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I believe there are a lot of COVID travel restrictions in place on the east coast. Please check each state before you get there for quarantine restrictions. We hope they ease up before spring, but you never know. Have a safe trip.
Yeah, we're keeping an eye on things. With a bit of luck we'll make it out in a couple months....
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Old 01-29-2021, 09:18 PM   #18
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Yes I do. In the past 5 years, we twice traveled from Richmond, Va., to and through upstate New York then again to Maine, NH and Vermont. I spent months picking the brains of folks on this forum and several others. I'd be glad to share all this with you.
PM me.
Thanks I will!
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Old 01-29-2021, 09:25 PM   #19
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Excellent advice! We make the trip to Mount Desert Island from MD every year, and it may be the best of the East Coast. Sadly, the highways you will travel leave something to be desired as far as upkeep is concerned, so watch for potholes, etc. Just a few other cautions: Campobello is in Canada, and at least this year they don't want us and our plague. Maine (and CT and MA and NY) also had restrictions this year, so be sure to check before you finalize your plans. Route 1 in Maine is indeed very scenic; but the roads are pretty narrow and crowded for a big RV - might be better to stay in the Freeport area and tour that part of Route 1 without the RV. Good luck with the trip - it will be fantastic if the travel restrictions aren't too bad.
Man, I hope they are not as bad as what we have here! If you don't like your rig, drag it down HWY 99. You'll be a whimpering mass of jelly when you get off it!
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Old 01-29-2021, 09:28 PM   #20
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Well I'd suggest that you think about seeing Western NY State in the finger lakes region AND Niagra Falls which is as spectacular as can be. You COULD do this on the way home from Maine by taking the NYS Northway and Thruway west . I like heading north to Maine on the Thruway from north of NYC...then you could stop at Lake George and Fort Ticonderoge or Lake Champlain before crossing over Vermont and NH...to Maine. Route 2 would put you all the way across into Northern Maine and Acadia (don't miss the Schoodic Penninsula) and then you can work your way south on the Maine coast through all the wonderful towns to Portland. (Belfast, Rockland, Rockport, Camden, Boothbay Harbor and Bath are not to be missed and Freeport to see the LL Bean original store. Portland is a nice small city worthy of some time and from there you can begin the road back home by heading south on 95 to Portsmouth NH and then back west across southern NH and Vt (Rt. 4 and 9)... or stay on 95 and run to the Mass Turnpike for a speedier route west and the Berkshires & historic towns. Alternatively...staying on 95 will let you pack on the miles if you're looking for a more southerly route home...but I'd avoid it for a more westerly or southwesterly hookup with the major highways west. Have a great trip and leave some lobster for the rest of us!
Wow! This is going to take longer than we thought! (which is just fine)
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