USA Road Trip

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by Team Benjo, Feb 28, 2010.

  1. Team Benjo

    Team Benjo

    Feb 28, 2010
    Sheffield, UK
    Hi Everyone

    Looking to see if anybody has any helpful tips for us..

    My husband and I are going on our first motorhome holiday in June, with our son who will be 14 months by then. Its my first time, although he spent all his childhood holidays in motorcaravans.

    We decided to start big, we are renting a 30' RV in New Jersey, and driving it as far down as Augusta, GA. We are hoping to take in Roanoke, Nashville, Memphis, some of Alabama, some nice spots on the east coast, and Washington DC.

    Has anyone any experience of a trip like this? Theres loads of books out there about Walmarts where you can camp for free, truck stops etc. Can anyone recommend if any of these would be worthwhile buying?

    We are planning to make some stops just off the road whilst we make some ground, and then find some nicers spots where we can do some exploring and hanging out.

    Really interested in any tips or advice


  2. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

    Jul 19, 2007
    Sutton on Sea
    Hi Claire, there are a few members here with extensive experience of touring the US so I am sure that you will get some great advice here.

    Meanwhile welcome to the Fun:thumb:

    Claire - Before you go you really should read the Motorhome Security Handbook. details below:Smile::thumb:
  3. Larrynwin

    Larrynwin Funster

    Feb 22, 2008
    Hello Claire and all welcome to MHF, we did a couple of trips one starting San Francisco and visiting many of the fabulous places in California, Nevada Arizona and the other starting NJ travelling north to Cape Cod, Toronto, Niagara and back to NY.
    Incredible and unforgettable hols.
    We took our Garmin navigator with all the POIs and map info for the States but also referred to the KOA sites book which was provided by both Elmonte and Cruise America.
    The people are friendly and helpful, I am sure you will love it, have a great time


    PS we had a grizzly visit our BBQ one night at Tahoe, we ran.Have never stopped talking about it !!!!
  4. madbluemad

    madbluemad Banned

    Jan 26, 2008
    Hi, as Larry said the KOA campsites are great but you honestly can park anywhere you like and overnight.

    We've done pretty much all of the states over the years and there isn't anywhere thats disappointed us. I cant remember how much the campsites were but we found stopping on sites far better than wilding or boondocking as its called over there.

    With KAO Campsites the price reduces as you move from one site to the next and there's a really good network of sites.

    You will have a ball .......... Wish it was me :RollEyes:

  5. ourcampersbeentrashed

    ourcampersbeentrashed Funster

    Apr 19, 2008
    East London
    Hi Claire welcome to motorhome fun.

    There are some great meets in the Uk coming up too so have a look

    Hope you have a fantastic time in the US
  6. lebesset


    May 31, 2009
    well , we tried a campsite for a night , but then we wildcamped for a year , east to west , canada to south of mexico
    point is you lose so much time planning to stop in a certain place , and with virtually every truck stop on the interstates offering all the overnight stops [ complete with dumps/propane /fuel / restaurants ] you could wish , we felt we got more bang for your buck , so to speak ; walmarts etc are popular , but we rarely used them ; we asked advice from american rv'ers but frankly the majority are a pretty frightened lot , want to go from known place to known place
    in our experience flying J [ a mormon outfit ] were the cleanest truck stops with the best facilities

    you don't say how many months you have , so is difficult to be specific
  7. johnsandywhite


    Jul 29, 2007
    :Cool: Hi Claire. We did a 3 month tour 4 years ago and stopped mainly at the Flying 'J' Truck stops. We signed up for Flying 'J' Wifi so we could stay in touch wherever we were. We did all around Florida, up to Georgia, Nashville, Memphis then headed West to California stopping at most of the National parks on the way. Then headed back East along I10 back to Florida ready for shipping the RV. You can buy a VERY good Map book (Rand McNally) from Walmarts that has all thr various Truck stops on it. Rand McNally is also online. :thumb:
  8. JeffersonCampervan

    JeffersonCampervan Funster

    Mar 27, 2008
    Well I've traveled these areas dozens of times.

    Really don't know where to start, but off the top of my head.

    1) Walmarts are the best freecamping spots. Not as noisy as truck stops, most are open all night, usually with mobile security patrolling the lot (prefer the Supercenters). Just pick up a Walmart road atlas at the first one you stop at - it will list all of them (more than the Garmin does). We found that GPS POI lists are very deficient in this regard. Some Walmarts bar overnighting due to local bylaws (rare). Here's a Yahoo Group on freecamping at walmarts, truck stops, etc. :

    2) we also stay at truck stops, but they are usually noisy, but many have have full services incl propane & dumping. We agree on the assessment of Flying J - we have even used their showers - as good & clean as any German rastplatz shower. We carry this guide to truckstops, but frankly seldom use it:

    3)Also check out Camping World locations.

    4)looking at the loop you are probably making, I'd consider also checking out the the Blue Ridge Parkway , part of the Natchez Trace,the Outer Banks, Charleston. For Washington, we stay at the campground at Pohick Bay Regional Park in Virginia, south of the city. There is a more commercial place with shuttle busses, etc. near Wash. as well.

    5) my favorite N.Am. "Motorhome Fun" forum is: RV Net

    6)In addition,I posted the following on another forum, in response to a request for a campground guide:

    The two main campsite guides are phonebook-sized, but at least one is available on CD; these are commercial and public site info is sketchy :

    There are a number of websites, of interest:

    For national, State,County & City parks, I have never found a comprehensive guide (no money to be made from advertisers) - altho guides should be available at the tourist office that you will encounter as you enter each state (& at any state park office). AFAICT,the small county & town campgrounds are very hard to find in any central resource.

    otherwise, cruise these sites: (not at all complete)

    And each state will have a site as well.
    Watch out for the fees- eg. once in a Michigan State Park we were charged camping, parking & entry fees. (seems silly since you would think the camping fee would include the other 2).
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2010

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