Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. Default Maine to Washington

    Hi, We are planning an RV trip in June from Nova Scotia to Maine to Washington and then into BC. We'd like some tips on the best places to camp, places to avoid, bluegrass festivals and of course places to see. We are just starting to plan the trip now.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,272

    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    Washington DC or Washington State? What timeframe?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    Best places to camp ... it depends on what you like. If you want hookups, the vast majority of public campgrounds do not have them. If you are willing to "boondock" (i.e. do without hookups), the public campgrounds in national parks and forests, and state parks, are often the prettiest and more rural. Hookups can be had at commercial parks. Good Sam has regional directories of commercial RV parks.

    As for places to avoid, use your senses. If something doesn't seem "right", it probably isn't. Sometimes you can't avoid them -- I have memories of being in a rather bad area of a city only because there was a business there that specialized in something that we needed to make a trailer repair.

    As for what to see, the best thing to do is to get a good atlas (from the RTA store, if you can't get one locally) and start searching along the areas you want to travel. Everyone has different tastes! If you give us some ideas of the types of things you like, we can make recommendations. It helps to know how long you'll have for travel, and to verify that you mean Washington State since you also mentioned British Columbia.

    Donna

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default A Few Pointers to Start

    First of all, congratulations on starting your planning early. That's easily the lowest-cost/highest-reward thing you can do to make sure that any RoadTrip is enjoyable and memorable. Probably the biggest thing you need to do right near the begriming is to choose a basic route. You can play around with variations as you plan, but knowing where you're going, how you're getting there, and why will help you get the most out of your drive. If you have a large rig with multiple axles, you're going to want to avoid both toll roads and large cities. To that end, I'd suggest looking at US-2 across northern New England from Bangor ME to St. Johnsbury VT, then use I-91 down to Hartford and I-84 west to Scranton. Drop down on I-81 to I-80 west across Pennsylvania to I-76 in Ohio to the Akron area and I-71 down to Columbus. Use the beltway (I-570) around Columbus to get on I-70 west which you'd follow to Indianapolis. From there, I-74 will take you up to the Quad Cities and I-80 through Iowa, I-29 will take you up to Sioux Falls and I-90 west to Seattle and on up into BC from there.

    Some of the advantages of such a route over the one mapping software will recommend? You miss the Maine Tpk, the New Hampshire Tpk., the Massachusetts Tpk., the New York State Thruway, The Ohio Tpk., the Indiana Toll Road, and the Tri-State Tollway, thus saving a ton of money. You also avoid the nightmare of driving the Chicago area in a large and unwieldy vehicle. And the routing outlined above will also keep you in more camper-friendly areas, such as national forests, rather than the major industrial lifelines of the northeastern US. Then out west, you'll be traveling historic and scenic roads past some of the country's great national parks.

    As far as camping goes, camping inside national parks will offer you the best chance to experience those parks at their best, but reservation slots fill early and then come open haphazardly as people cancel. What you'll need to do is decide roughly where you'll be at the end of each night and start now trying to make reservations. And keep at it. In the event you can't get a site in a national park, look for nearby state parks and national forests. Out west you can also search the BLM holdings to see what might be available. If you plan to visit four or more US national Parks, be sure to ask for an annual pass ($80) at the first one you come to. That will be good for all entries for everyone in your vehicle to national parks and monuments, but not for extra fees such as camping and parking.

    You can always take a different route if something else appeals to you or, if this is going to be a round-trip then taking different routes out and back makes some sense. And as noted above, you should work out roughly where you'll be at the end of each day rather than trying to find a campsite on the fly. For general planning purposes, you probably shouldn't count on covering much more than about 450 miles on a day devoted primarily to driving. That takes into account the generally slower nature of your vehicle and the extra time needed to set up and take down cam each day, but not any time spent stopping to see attractions during the day.

    There is at least one Bluegrass Festival I know of happening during your timeframe and that is the Telluride Bluegrass Festival in Colorado from June 16th to the 19th.

    AZBuck
    Last edited by AZBuck; 12-31-2015 at 03:45 PM. Reason: Typos

  5. Default

    Hi, Going to Washington State. Will leave from Nova Scotia beginning of June and would like to take about 4 to 6 weeks to arrive in Washington.

  6. Default

    Thank you very much for the tips. Our time frame for arriving in Washington State from Nova Scotia would be about 4 or 5 weeks. The things we are interested in seeing are Historical places and natural wonders like the Grand Canyon. We don't require hookups for camping and would love to stay in state/national parks. We are also really interested in seeing some old time/bluegrass festivals.
    Thanks again.

  7. Default Portland, ME to Lancaster PA

    Travelling from Portland, ME to Lancaster PA in June hauling a travel trailer. Would like to drive a scenic route and avoid toll roads as much as possible. Also would like good camping spots (we don't need hookups). Any advice would be appreciated.
    Thanks

    Please keep all posts about the same trip in the same place. - Mod

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default A Route and Campsite

    Driving from Portland to Lancaster could prove a nightmare if you just followed some computer-based mapping routine and tried to set up camp wherever evening found you. That's because any mapping software is going to send you down I-95 through New York City (with a trailer!), straight through the heart of Philadelphia on I-76, and have you trying to find a campsite somewhere in the suburbs of Philly, east or west depending on the traffic you've encountered. That's not the way to go. Instead, leave I-95 almost as soon as you enter Massachusetts and take I-495 around Boston to I-290 through Worcester to the Mass Pike. Use that for one exit westbound to Sturbridge and take I-84 west. Stay on that all the way through Connecticut and New York, crossing the Hudson at Newburgh. When you enter Pennsylvania, leave I-84 for US-209 south through the Delaware Water Gap, planning to camp there. The next day, continue down US-209 to Palo Alto PA and then take a series of state roads, PA-61/PA-183/PA-419/PA-501 down to Lancaster. This avoids Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton and Reading and instead gives you a nice scenic route through the valleys of the Alleghenies.

    AZBuck

  9. Default

    Thank you AZBuck. We definitely want to avoid big cities and major highways. Your suggestion sounds like an excellent route. We are trying to plan our trip to the west coast a little at a time, so will be seeking more advice once we have firmed up our plans to PA.
    jaydee

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    Also would like good camping spots (we don't need hookups).
    Do you have paper maps or a good road atlas? These will show public camping places such as state parks, national parks and forests, usually with a little green triangle. Sometimes they have hookups, and sometimes they don't. Same with shower facilities - sometimes they do, sometimes they don't.

    Unfortunately, the nearest state parks to Lancaster are still quite a bit of a drive away - French Creek State Park, and Marsh Creek State Park. However, either one could be a place to park your trailer while you visit the sites in Philadelphia, Valley Forge, or Lancaster - if you don't mind a few miles drive.

    I suggested it before, but will do so again -- a Good Sam directory is also extremely helpful. It will lead you to the privately-owned campsites, mostly.


    Donna

Similar Threads

  1. Eastern Washington to Maine September/October 2015
    By BosDad in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-05-2015, 10:53 AM
  2. Portland Maine to Washington
    By Boltonator in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 05-29-2014, 10:21 AM
  3. Toronto - Quebec - Maine - Washington DC
    By TerminalFrost in forum Spring RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 02-24-2008, 04:12 PM
  4. California -> Florida -> Maine -> Washington..
    By bmwg84 in forum RoadTrip Field Reports
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 10-12-2007, 01:43 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name

    Loading...



  • MORE STORIES