45 days and 45 nights, updated :)

Discussion in 'General Chit Chat' started by rockcity, Oct 8, 2019.

  1. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    updated to 45 days!!!


    Well, it’s about time to start planning the next 30 day sabbatical. This trip will be mid June to mid July 2020. The wife and kids will be off work and with me this time.

    Our plan right now only includes “take the RV around the country sightseeing for a month”. That’s about as far as we have gotten with planning. A lot of popular spots book up early, so there is a need to go ahead and get the details worked out.

    As far as sightseeing across the country, anyone have ideas of must-see or go to places? We have our list as well but I’m open to ideas from others that have experienced places and liked (or disliked) it.

    We don’t plan to go as far as California but would like to go as far as Zion and up to the Dakotas. Cali is cool but state place could take up a lot of our trip by itself.

    Ideally we’d be looking at RV campgrounds somewhat close to a couple places we plan to visit and use it as a hub so we aren’t driving the RV every day, just the vehicle we tow with us.

    Speaking of the vehicle we bring with us, at the moment I’m expecting to have a JLUR or possibly a JKUR by then with a few upgrades, so we do plan to squeeze in a couple wheeling days when we can. :) I would love to tow the buggies but would still need a daily driver, so it doesn’t make sense to have both buggies. At the very least, trailer my buggy and a daily driver vehicle but the weight and trailer length behind the RV can get a little cumbersome, especially if I plan to camp in some national/state parks.

    So, what say ye? Any ideas of cool places to visit around the country, east of Cali?
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
  2. DSM Turbos

    DSM Turbos Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    Are you firm about going out west? To me going west for 30 days hard to get a lot of good stuff in while in an RV IMO. It can be done, but it will be kinda of rushed unless you want to stay in a concentrated area.
    Maybe yours isn't as big though, we don't like to do more than 200-300 miles in ours though, it gets tiring (37'). If I was going to go out west for a month, I concentrate on a small area, high tail it out there, then take as much time as you can seeing stuff in a more concentrated area vs driving. There really isn't crap to see unless you go way out of the way until you get past TX.

    My dad just got back from doing the NE of the US (maine, NE, then up to canada) took about 2 months though. Another great option if you don't want to go across the country.
     
  3. Atla

    Atla Pew Pew! Vroom Vroom!

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2010
    Location:
    Marion NC
    Step 1. Go to Wyoming
    Step 2. Don't come back.

    That's how my 'trip planning' would go.
     
  4. StretchASU

    StretchASU Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    Location:
    Creedmoor, NC
    Dont move to Wyoming...it sucks there and nobody should go. At least thats what the locals say. Haha.

    If I had a month to run out that way:
    Southern route out to the Grand Canyon and hit some of the Route 66 stuff along the way. Run north to Moab, wheel a little. Keep going north and do the whole Yellowstone/Cody trip and hit the new Weatherby factory in Sheridan, WY. Pop down to the Medicine Bow/Routt NF area in southern WY and do some fishing on the Platte and Encampment. Then start making my way back hitting Land Between the Lakes OHV along the way before making the final push home.
     
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  5. jeepcj3a

    jeepcj3a Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2006
    Location:
    winston salem
    I’ll edit later when at better keyboard but if you have not been anywhere out west, I would suggest the loop of Grand Canyon, Moab (Arches/Canyonlands. A good side trip from Moab would be Mesa Verde National Park. It’s tour guide led only into the ruins but well worth the cost), Bryce Canyon and Zion (during summer they only allow their busses into the main strip of Zion unless you are staying at the main lodge in the park. Was there last June and busses run often but parking just outside the gates gets jammed packed). I did a 1,000 mile driving loop to all of the above parks in seven day timespan wishing I had much more time for it. I would go from that area north to Grand Teton and in south entrance of Yellowstone then out East into Montana if you like fly fishing. My favorite park in California is Sequoia. It’s 9 or so hours west of Zion but you go through Vegas and Death Valley on the way.
     
  6. GONOVRIT

    GONOVRIT blue collar brotherhood

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Dallas NC
    The kids going kinda threw me off. What are you looking to do, just touristy sights or hikes of a few miles or more? It’s good you’re planning now. There are great things to see and do in every state between here and Zion NP. Speaking of Zion, Larry McRae owns and runs a Jeep tour business there now. He’s good people and I’m sure he could help you however need be.

    We went through Michigan and the UP not long ago. It was great but just Melissa and I hiking and biking.
     
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  7. paulevans76

    paulevans76 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Location:
    York, SC
    I'd be trying to see as much of the hits in NM, AZ, UT, as well as maybe Tahoe if you go that far, then Yellowstone, some Montana, Dakotas. I would *want* to go see a lot of stuff in CA, OR, WA, but that would be pushing it even with 30 days.
     
  8. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    We love the outdoors but also like tourist type things as well. So, it doesn’t necessarily have to be national parks or RV places. Hell, we may park the RV somewhere for a week and road trip it from there, hopping from hotel to hotel if need be.

    Hiking and biking is one of my favorites as well as the kids. Bri likes to bike as well but isn’t nearly as experienced on a bike and trails, mostly a beach cruiser. So, she better start practicing or we stick to the easy trails, and I’m not into easy trails. :lol:

    So, sightseeing is broad, to include national parks, Cadillac Ranch, Moab, and so on and so forth. We like to visit NYC and see that stuff too, so we don’t necessarily have to concentrate on any specific type of activity.

    Here is a partial list that we have so far:
    Hoover dam

    Yellowstone
    Bryce
    Mt Rushmore
    Black hills
    Grand Canyon
    Cadillac ranch
    Valley of fire
    Elephant rock
    Moab
    Zion national park
    Arches
    Grand Tetons

    Our RV is a 40’ diesel pusher, so campgrounds are going to be somewhat limited and even further limited if I bring a trailer versus a tow behind vehicle.


    I’ve been to Sequoia, San Fran, Redwoods, etc, and that it’s a little more of a drive than we want, we are not necessarily planning anything in CA.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2019
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  9. GONOVRIT

    GONOVRIT blue collar brotherhood

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Dallas NC
    Are you against flat towing? After we flat towed @tw89yj gladiator through WV I’d hate to bother with a trailer for that distance. Took Travis and I maybe 5min to hook or unhook.
     
  10. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    I prefer to flat tow. It just depends on the buggy/vehicle by that time. I’ve been looking for a JLU with axles or even a Rubicon version to set up for moderate trail riding and still be road worthy by then. I’d be ok with a JKUR as well but prefer the JL.
     
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  11. Hitdogg

    Hitdogg Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2016
    Location:
    Bostic
    If you are gonna be in South Dakota, I thought Deadwood was awesome. Also, if you happen to see signs for Wall Drug, that's about as touristy as it gets!
     
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  12. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    Ok so time to bring this back to the top as we are making good headway with our plans. Already made some reservations at some of the big parks. Filling in the gaps now with various other adventures and stops.

    oh, and instead of 4 weeks, we pushed the trip out to 6 weeks! Yay!

    here is our tentative schedule:


    June 13. Pack camper
    June 14. Pack camper and hit the road.
    June 15. Arrive at Mammoth Cave NP in KY (11 hr drive from Greenville)
    June 16. Mammoth Cave NP in KY.
    June 17. Drive to Chicago (7 hr drive)
    June 18. Spend time in Chicago area. Multiple water parks are all over the area or find other things to do (Field Museum, Legoland, Navy Pier, Lincoln Park Zoo, Nature Museum, Aquarium, Kohl childrens museum, 606 trail, Shakespear Theater, Riverwalk, Maggie Daley Climbing Park, and more) Some of these activities can carry over to the next day as the baseball game isn't until 1pm.
    June 19, Chicago Cubs vs Boston Red Sox at Wrigley Field in Chicago 1pm
    June 20, Drive to Omaha/Louisville State Recreation Area (7 hour drive)
    June 21, Louisville State Recreation Area
    June 22, Travel to Mt. Rushmore (8 hour drive)
    June 23, Mt. Rushmore/Black Hills/Wind Cave
    June 24, Mt. Rushmore/Wind Cave/Devils Tower
    June 25, Devils Tower, travel to Yellowstone (7 hour drive)
    June 26, Yellowstone
    June 27, Yellowstone
    June 28, Yellowstone
    June 29, Grand Tetons
    June 30, Grand Tetons
    July 1, Drive to Dinosaur National Monument (6 hours).
    July 2, Dinosaur National Monument
    July 3, Drive to Moab, UT (4.5 hours)
    July 4-6, Moab, Arches National Park, Canyonlands
    July 7, Drive to Bryce/Zion (4.5 hours to Bryce)
    July 8-10, Bryce and Zion (Zion is 1.5 hours from Bryce, may could use the same campground for both locations)

    I actually think this next segment to Valley of Fire and Hoover Dam will be utilized elsewhere and we will skip these areas so we can enjoy many of the other attractions at the other parks.

    July 11, Drive to Valley of Fire (2.5 hours from Zion) (or drive straight to Grand Canyon and skip this next segment)
    July 12-13, Valley of Fire, Hoover Dam, Elephant Rock.
    July 14, Drive to Grand Canyon (North Rim is 6 hours, South Rim is 6 hours)
    July 15-16 Grand Canyon
    July 17, Begin drive back east. Stop in Antelope Canyon, AZ
    July 18, Antelope Canyon, AZ if we go to the North Rim of Grand Canyon, drive is 3.5 hours or 2.5 hours from South Rim.
    July 19, Drive to Winslow, AZ and can stop at the Petrified Forest National Park
    July 20, Drive to Carlsbad Caverns, NM
    July 21, Carlsbad Caverns, then continue the drive back east
    July 22, Drive east. Can stop in OKC area for a break
    July 23, Continue east. May need to adjust the return home portion after Grand Canyon to get home on the 24th.
    July 24, Arrive home in Greenville
    July 25, Rest
    July 26, Rest
    July 27, Work. Ugh! :(
     
  13. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    Raleigh
    towing anything? or just driving RV?
     
  14. Mac5005

    Mac5005 Welding Instructor

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2005
    Location:
    Rocky Mount
    If you are going as far as Hoover dam, it’s within an hour to red rock canyon. May as well drive thru or stay the night in Vegas. Not for the gambling or partying, but it’s impressive to see the town of that size in the middle of the high desert.

    Red rock canyon is great.

    I don’t think I’ll ever venture back to Death Valley again. It was meh? To me.
     
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  15. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    I’m in the process of purchasing a 2016 JKUR, so that will be towed behind us.

    I have Hoover dam on the list but I really think the family won’t like it as much as I would. Vegas for a night may be cool, just depends on our trip progress by then. We are already adding days here and there and adjusting based on campground availability.

    those 3 days around that area, I’m thinking, would be better spent in Yellowstone and Tetons.

    also, a lot of people seem to like the Black Hills, so it’s on the schedule as a placeholder but may get shortened after I research some more. Devils Tower and Mr Rushmore are probably a couple hour stops along the way, so no major need to extend those days more than they are. Likely to shorten and get more time in Yellowstone and Tetons.
     
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  16. Andy J.

    Andy J. wheels for beer

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Location:
    Winston
    That's an action packed trip! Sounds both awesome and exhausting. You are correct about Mt Rushmore being a couple hour stop. It's a quick hike up to the viewing platform, hit the gift shop, and out.
     
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  17. thecj3man

    thecj3man Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2005
    Location:
    Fall Branch, TN
    I spent a day in the Valley of Fire State Park last year when my wife and I went to Vegas. I thoroughly enjoyed the scenery and the drive out there from Vegas. Get there early so you can walk over to the Fire Wave before it gets blistering hot. The parking area to see the Petroglyphs isn't big enough for an RV. I don't remember which road we were on, but one of them was tiny even in a rental car.
     
  18. GONOVRIT

    GONOVRIT blue collar brotherhood

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Dallas NC
    GLACIER NATIONAL PARK. Yes, I purposely put that in caps. It would be best for you to stay on the west side and drive the gay k around.
     
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  19. UTfball68

    UTfball68 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Granite Quarry
    So what's your general feeling on a trip that long, I thought you were nuts at 30 days, now extending to 45. I usually need a vacation from my vacation by day 10, some times as soon as day 5.
     
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  20. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    I want to do Glacier NP but it’s just too far north for this trip. Maybe the next go-round.


    The good thing about this trip is that we have our own RV. So it’s almost like home. And, every place is different. We have never been.

    On a cruise, yeah, I’m ready to come home by day 4 or 6. It’s all the same. And for a week-long beach trip, I can be ready for my own bed by day 6.

    but with this trip, I’m ready for the adventure. We have lots of cool activities planned (hiking, rappelling, rafting, tent camping, 4x4 trails, scenic drives in the Jeep, zip lining, etc.). So I’m sure we will be exhausted but not ready to come home. We have the luxury of staying somewhere longer and being flexible if we want. So for that, I’m excited.

    Luckily I have the same mattress in the RV as I do at home, so I have something that’s actually comfortable. It’s still not the same as “home” but it certainly helps.
     
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  21. Andy J.

    Andy J. wheels for beer

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Location:
    Winston
    My first thought was you might want to upgrade those RV mattress pads. We did a 10 day RV trip and by day 4 I was starting to dread sleeping on that 4" foam pad. That's the first upgrade I'd make if I owned one. Sounds like a dream trip. It has been 2+ years since our short trip and we still talk about it.
     
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  22. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    Woot! Just purchased the cubbies versus Red Sox tickets during their preseason presale today. So, I don’t have to wait and get from stubhub or vivid seats and pay a premium!

    so, June 19 @ Wrigley field, check. :D
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
  23. thebrotherinlaw

    thebrotherinlaw Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2014
    Location:
    WNC
    We did a 7000 mile loop pulling our TT from Asheville, through Iowa (just to get it off the lower 48 list), and dry camped at Wall SD right outside of Badlands National Park. Way cool and free. The mountain goats come up on top of the rim in the evening and the little one's jump all around. We made our way over to Yellowstone and took in the sights. We actually drove about 300 miles in that park because there are no other roads from where we were staying or going so we traversed that area a lot. Yellowstone is cool but the traditional places everyone visits are very far apart and sometimes when you get there, it just wasn't worth the drive. Also know that Yellowstone stinks due to the boiling Sulphur pools everywhere and heaven help if there's a buffalo near the road because you'll sit in traffic forever. The Grand Tetons were beautiful and you mentioned hiking so that's going to be awesome. Jackson hole sucks except for the restaurants. I had elk ribs and "huckleberry" crème brulee. Son! Wifey had a steak. Western grass fed beef is amazing! Went to Arco Idaho after that and stayed in a lava flow. I didn't know there were any in the continental U.S. but our little white camper was set up in an ocean of black lava. Wanted to get to Glacier but it was on fire and everyone said not to go so we went back to North Dakota to grouse hunt and made our way down to the sand hills of Nebraska doing the same. Stopped in Chelsea OK to see the fam and back to Asheville via Missouri. Full trip. No problems. Don't stay overnight at a Walmart. Cabela's rock though. Have to put a plug in for the truck, 6.0 Powerstroke got it done.
     
  24. rockcity

    rockcity everyday is a chance to get better

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2005
    Location:
    Greenville, NC
    We haven’t made any Badlands reservations just yet. The parks are still only about half full, so still trying to decide.
     
  25. obullfish

    obullfish Carolina Trail Blazers

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2011
    Location:
    Candler N.C.
    The Tetons, Black Hills, and the Badlands is some of my favorite areas in the country.
     

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