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Help me plan our Great American Vacation

 
 
shewolfnm
 
  1  
Reply Sat 23 Aug, 2008 05:52 am
oh my!! the duck is driving Smile

Well miss lady, I tell you what.
If your trip takes you any farther south into Austin, you and your whole crew can park here and hang at my home for a few days. We can fill the living room with beds, put on movies, lay around ,drink wine and chatter until we pass out.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 23 Aug, 2008 07:59 am
A slumber party! Sounds fun if we end up dipping down that way.

Great idea Btrfly. I hope we do make it to Columbus.

Osso, we freaks in the south are the only ones who start in August, I think. Most other places wait until after labor day. Oh well.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 10:30 am
Ok, so the planning bug has bitten me again. The latest thinking is to find a VW camper van for the trip since they are much smaller than RVs but have tons of great features for camping. The problem I am having is that they seem to only rent them on the west coast and in Hawaii. I dont think we really want to buy one since it would just be for this trip, but that is still an option. Anyone have any ideas? From all my googling I found two rental places on the east coast, both of which appear to be out of business.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 11:43 am
It was inevitable. We had to shorten our route. I took advice offered here and cut off the East Coast to save for another trip. If we end up buying a VW Eurovan then it will be easy to do the East Coast over a shorter winter break or another summer.

Here is the new tentative route.
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 12:30 pm
@FreeDuck,
So happy to see this updated... I love this idea.

Your new route looks great! And Columbus is still on it! (Does a celebratory dance)

San Francisco is on your route and I saw a place that rents the VW campers there (started to post, then realized it was the same link as yours).

What about flying to SF, getting the camper, doing the loop (with a brief stop at home to say hi to everyone about halfway through, or just bypass Atlanta) and then flying home from SF? Would that add too much expense X 4?
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 12:37 pm
@FreeDuck,
FreeDuck wrote:

It was inevitable. We had to shorten our route. I took advice offered here and cut off the East Coast to save for another trip. If we end up buying a VW Eurovan then it will be easy to do the East Coast over a shorter winter break or another summer.


Well yes, if you buy a VW Camper then you can break down the route into
several trips. I would suggest, since you have younger children, to not by-pass
Disneyland and Sea World (Anaheim and San Diego). It will give them a welcome break too, as it can get quite boring for them driving long hours and not having any friends around.

0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 12:54 pm
What do you drive? If you have something that will tow, or need to replace what you have now, I would get a cheap tent trailer. The go for 5-12k new but in this economy you should be able to find used cheap. The new ones are very light, and can be hauled by some cars even, though it is said that they are not as well made as the older stuff. If you might be interested check out the RV sites, to include rv forums.
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 01:25 pm
@sozobe,
I thought about that -- there is another one that rents them in Las Vegas, which I can usually find cheap flight specials to. If the flights are cheap enough we could do that. The only downside is that anything we would want to pack, like camping gear, would have to be flown in with us. But it is still a real possibility if we cant find a camper on the east coast.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 01:29 pm
@hawkeye10,
We dont have anything can tow right now. We do have a Toyota Highlander but we would need to add the tow package before we could do it. I like the idea of keeping things simple. Those Eurovans are still small enough to go wherever an SUV can, yet you have the sleeping room and the ability to cook and wash up. Most campsites have showers and bathrooms, so this would be kind of like driving around in your tent -- never having to break it down or put it up. I am a bit of a lazy-ass.
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 04:03 pm
@FreeDuck,
FreeDuck wrote:
Here is the new tentative route.

Wow -- only five days and four hours! Any plans for the weekend?
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 06:12 pm
@Thomas,
Schniffing happily at H, the redwood national park area!
I'd be glad to have a VDub camper van driving there. Perfect.
(I'm not as emotional about Albuquerque, fond as I am. I could slap myself silly for not enough photos on my drives through those forests, though. Did two big paintings, but I've gripes about those.) Thing is, on my many drives, it was often dreamlike, and stopping to snap photos just didn't come into the experience.
(Bring cds, did I say that before?)
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 06:24 pm
@ossobuco,
Well, I could schniff at Yosemite too, in many ways. I was first there in the early sixties, made aware of it by a mountaineer boyfriend. (Schniff again)

There is nothing like the drive through the tunnel to see the valley for the first time... ah, try to time that. I think we did that in a vw bug, staying the night before at a motel prior to the valley.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 11:53 pm
@Thomas,
Oh we plan to take our sweet time, spending at least a few days in each major stop. I think there is actually a lot to see in Nevada (or was that Utah?) that we dont know about yet. I imagine we will get some place, ask around, and find out about something that we will just have to see. We will make the necessary reservations and plans for the big things but leave time to check out things we dont know about yet.

Osso, thanks for sharing your experiences. I know exactly what you mean about taking pictures taking away from the experience. I forget the camera a lot these days because I miss things while trying to capture them. I hope it is all still as you remember it.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 01:12 am
@FreeDuck,
By a remarkable cooincidence, that's just the day I was planning on being in Albuquerque, too.
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 11:21 am
@roger,
I love those kinds of coincidences.
0 Replies
 
Ticomaya
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 04:11 pm
@FreeDuck,
If you are still looking for a train ride to inject into your trip, FD, the Grand Canyon Train takes you from Williams, AZ to the South Rim. LINK


FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 04:33 pm
@Ticomaya,
Oh wow! Thanks Tico!
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 04:45 pm
@FreeDuck,
I completely missed this last summer. Happy to see there's a Chicago layover on your itinerary. I'd be happy to help any way I can (might be able to find you a convenient driveway located in the woods that has easy access to all places of interest and comes complete with indoor plumbing and a kitchen)
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 04:49 pm
@JPB,
Maybe you can camp out in the Obama's yard since they won't be using it for awile.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jan, 2009 09:54 am
@JPB,
Thanks, JPB! I've always wanted to visit Chicago and never have. What's the summer like there?

I feel like hopping in that camper right this minute dangit.
 

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