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  1. #1

    Default 90 Day Sports Road Trip down Eastern North America from Sept to Dec

    My buddy and I are going on a 90 day road trip to see 60 sports games from September 24th till December 23rd.

    Now that the intro is out of the way....

    We are planning to buy a pop up trailer and hitch it to my car for our journey.

    Those of you who have done this before, is it easy to find places to park and set up the tent trailer while on route?

    My friend says that WalMart allows this, but I'm also wondering about just on the side of the road places. Is this allowed and possible?

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance for help.
    Last edited by AZBuck; 08-08-2013 at 07:51 PM. Reason: New members may not link to outside websites

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Southern California
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    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    Most Wal-Marts probably will NOT allow you to pop your tent-trailer, as that will be considered "camping". The same will probably happen in truck stops. Both places often allow overnights, but are usually limited to a camper van, motorhome, pickup truck camper, travel trailer, or someone wanting an occasional snooze in their car (not recommended). This is true even if your "tent trailer" is a hard-sided type, or a type of travel trailer that lifts up like a Hi-Lo. We used to have a tent-trailer, so we have some experience with camping in this rig.

    You'll want to look for county and state parks, national forests, and perhaps commercial campgrounds, as reasonably priced places to stay.


    Donna

  3. #3

    Default

    Thanks Donna! We might look into a travel trailer that doesn't lift up or anything then. Just hope my car can tow it.

    Has anyone had problems with parking in like sports field parking lots for the night? We aren't set on WalMart, but will want to be somewhat close to downtowns, so camp sites aren't really going to work for us.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
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    Default

    That won't work either. The venue will be chasing everyone out of the lots after the game.

    You guys need to pool together and get a small conversion van. Most modern cars cannot tow even a small travel trailer and dealing with a trailer in cities is a pain. I doubt you would even be let into a stadium parking lot towing a trailer.

  5. #5

    Default

    Yea, sorry I wasn't meaning the professional stadium.

    I was more meaning like public soccer fields or arenas that are empty at night. Then we would take public transportation into the game and back to our trailer.

    Do you think this is a reasonable thing to think or would we be asked to leave everywhere we set up.

    I don't think we have the funds for a conversion van.

    My car is a new Honda Civic, so the tow capacity is supposed to be about 1000 lbs.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Joplin MO
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    Default

    You will most likely be asked to leave. The only places tent trailers are welcome are in actual campgrounds.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
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    13,064

    Default drawing board

    I've got to say, I think your current plan has some pretty major problems and I think you're going to have to rethink how you approach it.

    First, I would never recommend using a Honda Civic, or any compact car, for towing over a 3 month trip. While it may have a capacity of 1,000 pounds, that's basically a safety recommendation and something I would only apply for short trips, like bringing a load of lumber home from a hardware store, or maybe hauling things to a friends house, less than 100 miles away. Towing is extremely hard on vehicles. even ones that are designed for it, and you would dramatically be lowering the life expectancy (and increasing repair costs) of your car by using it for long term towing. Also keep in mind that damage caused by towing often is excluded from warranty coverage.

    Second, even if you aren't concerned about the longevity of your car, you'll have a real tough time finding even a small camper that would work with a 1,000 lbs towing capacity. Even a small pop-up is going to weigh in at around 1,000 lbs, and you need to remember that you also need to factor in the overall maximum capacity/weight of your car. Meaning, if you are using all 1,000 lbs of towing capacity, you basically need to have your car completely free of extra passengers and luggage.

    Then you've also got the problem of where to camp and the hassle of pulling a trailer itself. Parking with a trailer is always going to be difficult, and is going to be extremely expensive if you are going to professional sporting events. The ideas you've listed so far just aren't going to work. Leaving your vehicle at a public park is not going to work, as most have restrictions on hours, both in terms of time limits and hours of operation, such as closing after dark. Staying there overnight is a near guarantee that you'll get very familiar with local law enforcement officers - and if the park is not well patroled at night, then you likely wouldn't be safe staying there anyway! There's also the issue that outside of a few places like New York, Boston, and DC, public transit options are usually very limited, especially after business hours.

    Also keep in mind, even in the south, it is likely to be cold - at times below freezing - by the time you get into late November and December.

    Really, the only way I see this working at all is if you stay at campgrounds, unhook your trailer, and then drive into the city. Considering the costs of camping, the wear and tear on your vehicle, and just the hassle, I think looking at hostels and budget hotels will be a better bet.

    Realistically, what kind of budget do you plan on having for this trip?
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 08-09-2013 at 05:19 AM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Michael makes some very good points.

    Not only will towing be harder on the car and become a pain in the neck to get around with, it will cause you to lose significant gas mileage. For what you would pay for a trailer and the extra gas, you can probably afford to stay in hostels, cheap motels, and do some on the ground tent camping.

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Southern California
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    You won't find a regular or tent trailer that will weigh in at less than 1000 lbs. Also consider the stuff you would be putting into it (linens, cooking equipment, etc). We towed ours with a Pontiac TranSport, then a Ford F350 (which admittedly was a bit of an overkill).

    The others are correct in saying that you need to look into hostels, budget motels, and tenting (in the southern areas).


    Donna

  10. Default

    Thanks a lot for the feedback everyone.

    We are thinking of going a completely different route now. I don't want to put any wear and tear on my car because it is fairly new so I think the tent trailer idea is out the window. For that reason and the many others listed :P.

    Now we are thinking of buying a big used van and just throwing a mattress in the back, or possible purchasing a cheap minibus or RV and reselling it after the trip.

    Our budget for the travel and accommodation portion of the trip is probably around $3000, which includes gas, the vehicle - sale afterwards, and accommodation, so the hotels/hostels may still be too expensive.

    Ideally we just want a vehicle that we can crash in. We know some people on the way and may be using couch surfing as well, but if all else fails we'd like to be able to sleep horizontally for free en route.

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