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  1. Default Travelling West Coast to the East Coast

    I will be flying to Seattle to move my sister back east. I am not sure what sized vehicle we will be driving as there will not be any furniture but I want to make this a memorable trip for us both. My question is what are the must see spots along the way? Are there any areas/roadways that might be tricky depending upon the size vehicle we have to use? Places we should avoid? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Welcome to RTA!

    A couple of questions for you before any of us can make some good suggestions:

    Seattle is the beginning -- where is the end of the trip?

    How long are you planning to take for the trip? The size of the vehicle will impact the length of each day's drive, as one is often slower with a large vehicle -- not so much a car.

    Here at RTA, we don't do "must see"s, since your idea of a "must see" may be something that does not interest me in the slightest (or vice versa). Also, since we don't know where you are headed, it would be difficult to offer some ideas because they could be a long way from your route, and you may/may not have the time to make that side trip. To make good suggestions, knowing a little about what you and your sister like, would help us help you.

    Another thought -- do you have maps or a good atlas? You should have one of them, preferably both. (If either of you has a AAA membership, you can get free maps with your card.) Open the atlas to the USA map, and look to see what in between the starting and ending point shows up on the map, that interests you. Then check the individual state maps in the atlas (or the ones you can get from AAA) for the same.

    As for places to avoid -- use the same instincts you would at home. If a place doesn't seem right, it probably isn't.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    There are so many things you haven't told us that it will be nearly impossible for anyone to provide you any meaningful advice.

    You haven't even given us a destination - a trip from Seattle to Boston would have almost nothing in common with a trip to Miami, but both are possible based on what you asked.

    Similarly, without some idea of what you might be interested in and how much time you have, there's no way to narrow down the millions of things you could do on a trip that (at this point) covers the entire lower 48 states.

    For that matter, while there are very few things that your specific vehicle will come into play for, guessing what those things might be when you could be driving anything from a subcompact car to a moving van towing a car behind, just isn't going to be possible.

    The best bit of help we can provide at this point is to suggest you start with the basics. Figure out where you're going, what you're going to use to get there, and then do a little reading and research to figure out a few things that would be must see for you. Once you have some of the basics, then others can help with more specific ideas and suggestions.

  4. Default

    Donna, Thank you for your response. You are correct I have left out pertinent information. Our end destination is Upstate New York. Currently we do not have a timeline, however, that may change. In my opinion this may be the only opportunity I will have to see this part of the country and am in no hurry. Although if we did have a time limit I guess I am looking for suggestions that if you had to make a choice which would it be. You are right everyone has a difference of opinion as to what is a must see or a place of interest as interests vary but I would like to be the one to make that determination. We have a wide variety of interests and would make the most of everything. Thank you!

  5. Default

    Thanks Michael, I can not narrow down what I need for transportation until I see what she has to bring back with her. Hopefully I won't need anything to big. In my response to another post I mentioned that our final destination is Upstate New York. I do know that I would like to see the obvious attractions i.e. Yellowstone, the Badlands etc. Thank you for help.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Thanks for more information, it will make it much easier for us to give you suggestions.

    Just thinking off the top of my head - Mt Rainier National Park - Yellowstone National Park (allow 2-3 days if you can) - Little Bighorn National Battlefield (near I-90 and US-212 junction) - Devil's Tower National Monument (think Close Encounters of the Third Kind) - Black Hills (Mt Rushmore, Custer State Park, Wind Cave National Park, Jewel Cave National Monument, Badlands) - those could take two to three weeks and we haven't even crossed the Mississippi River yet.

    Another question for you: When is this trip? The reason I ask: Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, in the Black Hills area of South Dakota, runs from August 9-13. For that period of time, every motel and campground/RV park in the Black Hills is sold out of places. For a week before and a week after, things within 2-3 days drive either direction get crowded.


  7. Default

    Thank you for the heads up, we haven't pinned down a date yet as we are awaiting transfer paperwork. Those dates will certainly come close if not exact. I do have those areas on my list, is there anything out of the ordinary we might want to consider? We will have to work out accommodations some how, even if we rent an RV and sleep at rest areas.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    You can't legally sleep overnight in a RV in a rest area, nor is it very safe.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Truck stops.

    Lots of rest areas, especially in the northern States have a time limit when you can be there. I would not sleep in a rest area, but if you can find a truck stop which allows RV overnight parking, that is both safe and free. You can only park. You cannot pull out the chairs, or the slide, nor the bbq. It is parking, not camping.

    A courtesy would be to support the business which has saved you the cost of a hotel or an RV park. Eat in their restaurant, fill up your tank, etc.

    This publication available for a fraction of one night's accommodation, lists the truck stops which allow overnight parking. I use it all the time. Available at most large truck stops.


  10. Default

    Thank you Lifemagician. I was planning on looking into truck stops, I also know there are several businesses that allow rv parking as well. I would certainly patronize which ever business that would accommodate us parking for the evening. I wouldn't even think about pulling out a chair, or cooking, all I am looking for is a place to rest my head for the night if we can not find an opening at a park.

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