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  1. Default Motorhome Nubie needs help on trip from New York to San Francisco.

    My wife unfortunately has terminal pancreatic cancer so we decided to buy an RV to do a little traveling and to make her life a little bit more comfortable. We are flying to New York to pick up our rig then want to drive back by most direct route to San Francisco. I don't want to get far off the beaten due to her condition and this being a maiden voyage for our used 2007 RV. We do want to stay in the rv as much as possible and camp pretty close to the major highway we will be traveling. What are some of the obvious sites to behold along the way? We are trying to get this done in no more than 10 days, shorter if possible as I'm not certain to how well my gal will do on such a long trip.

    Any help would be much appreciated.

    Kindest regards,

    John

    p.s...both of us are used to long travel rides as we have seen a bit of the world, but most of it has been by air or train...not cross country in an rv. We have been avid campers so are not new to the camping scene.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,271

    Default

    Welcome!

    The most direct route is I-80 all the way. It's 2900 miles and if necessary it can be driven in 5 long days.

    I would recommend you order a Woodall's directory. Use this in conjunction with maps (Rand McNally Road Atlas recommended) and a GPS to find campgrounds. In a pinch, most larger truck stops allow overnight RV parking.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Straight and Easy

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    It is possible to make the entire drive from New York to San Francisco on a single highway, I-80. Large portions of it, such as through northern Pennsylvania, along the Platte River in Nebraska (where it follows the route of the old Oregon Trail), through the Great Divide Basin in Wyoming, over the Uinta Mountains in Utah, and over the Sierra Nevada in California are quite stunning, or historic, or both. And like all Interstates there are certainly lots of places to take breaks from the road without getting too far from the road. There are also, What constitutes "obvious sites to behold" depends on what you and your wife enjoy seeing and doing, so if you'll let us know what those interests might be, we can be of more specific help.

    I'm sure national parks or forests, state parks, or commercial campgrounds all of whom will have space for your RV. The main thing you have to work out is your pace for crossing the country. Ten days is more than enough. You could probably do it comfortably in as little as six if you could keep up a steady and fairly constant pace even with reasonable stops for food, fuel, and R&R breaks as noted above. Probably something in between will suit you best. You don't have to have a firm schedule as long as you have a good way to find campgrounds on the fly as you progress across the country. But you probably should know where, say, 400 mile days (which would mean 7-8 days for the transit) or 500 mile days (which would mean 6 days) would put you.

    AZBuck

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    There are some pretty neat places along I-80. You may have to take a little detour here and there, but with 10 days you have a little time to do that.

    I-80 through New Jersey will see some traffic, but through Pennsylvania you'll pass through some picturesque farmlands and forests.

    If driving around Chicagoland's southern edge (the south suburbs, wave at my relatives as you pass by please) does not interest you with a new-to-you RV, you could take I-71 from Akron OH down to I-70 west as far as Indianapolis. Then swing back up by using I-74 through the rest of Indiana and Illinois, picking up 80 again in western Illinois.

    In Iowa, you're not that far from the Amana Village. Through Nebraska and southern Wyoming, as said above, you are passing by many Oregon Trail historical places.

    Salt Lake City has plenty to see. A few years back, we stayed at Brigham City in an RV park that was close to the BEST fruit stands -- yum! I'd have made peach pies if I'd had the proper baking equipment with me! West of Salt Lake City are two things of interest, but one is north of the Great Salt Lake. That is Promontory Point, where the Transcontinental Railroad lines met so many historic years ago. Close to there is Morton-Thiokol, where some of the space shuttle engines were built. There are also the Bonneville Salt Flats.

    Of course, Tahoe isn't all that far from SF along I-80. It will probably be your most challenging pass, but since you'll be on an interstate it shouldn't be too bad. If you are slow, stay right with all of the other slow trucks!


    Donna

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
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    If driving around Chicagoland's southern edge (the south suburbs, wave at my relatives as you pass by please) does not interest you with a new-to-you RV, you could take I-71 from Akron OH down to I-70 west as far as Indianapolis. Then swing back up by using I-74 through the rest of Indiana and Illinois, picking up 80 again in western Illinois.
    You can save considerable tolls this way - on I-80, when you get to Youngstown, instead of staying on 80 and getting on the Ohio Turnpike, take I-76 to I-71 to Columbus, then I-70 to Indy, then I-74 back to 80. However, this adds about 100 miles. The toll savings would probably be nullified by the extra gas, and you will have to deal with a few metro areas (Akron, Columbus, Indy) instead of just Chicago.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
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    Some of us would rather deal with Akron, Columbus and Indianapolis, than CHICAGO. And I used to live in that area of Chicago! ACK!


    Donna :-)

  7. Default

    Thank you everyone for the input...much appreciated. I probably will be taking the I80 route but my wife is trying to get me to head south through Virginia, Tennessee, on to New Orleans then off to Leander Texas to see her friend...Wow...decisions, decisions. Thanks again, for the input.

    John

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
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    Default

    I'd probably do that - make this trip all about her. This may be the last time she can spend any time with her friend.

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