Quoted TextRV park phobia Sun Aug 29, 2010 1:10 pm (PDT)
I really know nothing about this lifestyle, but my husband and I have been tossing around the idea of hitting the road with our four children to "leave it all behind" for awhile. We don't own an RV and never have, and our vehicle can't even tow one, so we'd need both those items. I'm not even sure either of us is particulary adventuresome, but I've been reading "Adventuring with Children" by Nan Jeffrey and I'm so inspired. Our wish would be to travel across rural America, seeing the sights we haven't seen before. However, neither of us is excited about crowded RV parks. Is this a legitimate fear? Is there another way to see America that we haven't thought of? Is this a lifestyle you would recommend with four children, aged 2-9? Are we crazy? Just looking for advice, encouragement, ideas, etc.
We have traveled fulltime with 3 children (now ages 5-11) for 3 years now.
We have loved it and with the exception of San Francisco I have not found most RV parks to be crowded.
I am sitting here in my summer campground in PA with a big yard and lots of open spaces.
Your biggest issue will be to decide what kind of RV you want to travel in.
We chose a Class A so that the kids had access to their beds and to the bathroom while we were driving.
I could also feed them lunch or dinner if hubby was driving.
Now that we have slowed our travels down, we have decided to sell our RV and buy a custom fifth wheel so that we won't have an engine sitting for months not being used. However, when we move from place to place the kids will be stuck in a pickup. So you will have to decide how long will you be traveling versus how long will you be set up in one location to see what is best for your family.
You might also find that your needs change, like ours did.
Good luck on discovering your sense of adventure! :)
So far we've preferred rv parks & campgrounds to free public land (areas in national forests with free dry camping. Usually for small rigs.)
BLM land is "Bureau of Land Management", which has a website, & maps of their campgrounds. http://www.blm.gov
More security & friendlier people. We don't stay at crowded parks usually & have plenty of room.
We've stayed at a few dumps too & chalked it up to experience!!
Quoted TextHi J,
Why don't you rent an RV first for a week or two or maybe a month to see if you really like it?
I have 5 kiddos. We LOVE our times away in the RV ... BUT we are outside as much as we can be.
One of my boys gets really cranky when we're cooped up in it and when I'm cooking & trying to get everyone fed the kids are always under me and I feel like I need more space. Other than that, we love it.
Quoted TextMon Aug 30, 2010 8:26 am (PDT)
. . . it's been awesome, for our 3 kids and us!
We did sell off a lot and rented out our house for the year with the possibility of extending the rental agreement.
Dh got laid off, we homeschooled anyway and we've always loved to travel, so we decided to jump in and go for it!
After much research we bought 5th wheel so the kids can have their own room we can close the door on....yes we're stuck in the truck while driving, but we try not to drive more than 4 to 5 hours a day max on our travel days and we also don't travel every day of course unless we're just trying to make a destination.
We've stayed at national parks and forests so far, cheap and not crowded at all.
Right now we're parked just out side grand teton, dry camping. Have been here over a week already and have just decided to stay another week due to this terrific location and the great people we've met here. We've also met wondeful people at other places we've stayed. I think we now love national forest campgrounds more than even national parks. We have yet to stay at an rv park and honestly don't expect to at least in the near future.
No, you're not nuts - this is one of the best things we've ever done, especially for our children! Good luck!
Quoted TextThere's nothing to fear and if I was to do it again ( i.e. have young kids)
I would do it in a heartbeat. Not everyone would choose this.
Many people believe that life should be the way it is/was for them.
People growing up in the suburbs can end up believing all kids need many friends, soccer and access to theaters and malls.
City kids are often afraid of remote rural areas and the farm kids can freakout taking a short cut down an alley in a big city.
But in unfamiliar situations it's good to apply some caution.
In short Fulltime RVing is not the choice everyone would make. You must decide for yourself.
To see stories of our family's adventures see http://www.roadschool.com
Quoted TextFree public camping is not just in National forests. It is better known as BLM land.
We have been on the road 2 1/2 yrs now with a 4 yr old and an almost 10 yr old with special needs (autism). We LOVE it.
We started out in a 5th wheel, but our needs changed and we just finished converting an old Greyhound into a motorhome. We very rarely stay in rv parks.
I can think of 3 rv parks in the past 2 1/2 yrs and 2 campgrounds. They were nice, but we prefer to camp free on BLM land.
If we need to stop just for the night to sleep we stay at Wal-Marts or truck stops.
We are headed to the Grand Canyon tomorrow and will stay on BLM land there as well.