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9 National Parks, 15 States and 27 Campgrounds in 4 Months

9 National Parks, 15 States and 27 Campgrounds in 4 Months


avatar   Stacy
Trip Date 08/28/2021
Posted On 10/12/2021 09:03:11

Camping | RV Adventure | Road Trip | Campgrounds | RV Parks | AAA | Good Sam | KOA | Passport America | National Park | Illinois | Iowa | Indiana | Kentucky | Maryland | Michigan | Minnesota | Missouri | Ohio | Oklahoma | Pennsylvania | Texas | Wisconsin | Virginia | West Virginia | Cuyahoga Valley | Gateway Arch | Great Smoky Mountains | Indiana Dunes | Isle Royale | Mammoth Cave | New River Gorge | Shenandoah | Voyageurs



The pandemic has prompted us to adjust our travel style. We had plans for an African safari in 2020 which was postponed until 2021. Earlier this year, we made the difficult decision to push our travel date out another year. We are now hoping to be able to safely visit Africa in 2022.

This major change allowed us to plan yet another longer RV adventure in our home country. We loved last summer's camping journey to national parks within the United States, so we knew we would enjoy exploring more of America's natural beauty. What started as a tentative plan to spend up to 3 months away from home turned into a 4 month long road trip.

From our home state of Texas, we started by traveling north through Oklahoma, Missouri and Illinois. Driving further east, we made our way into Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland. From there, we began heading toward Minnesota, passing through Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana and Michigan on our way north. We rounded out our loop with stops in Wisconsin and Iowa before repeat states on our return to Texas. We actually camped in 11 of these 15 states for the first time!

We spent an extended period of time exploring 2 of the nation's 3 newest national parks - Indiana Dunes and New River Gorge. Although much shorter, our day trips through Mammoth Cave and Shenandoah gave us a desire to return. We found our way to 2 of the more remote national parks in the lower 48 - Isle Royale and Voyageurs. We even made encore visits to both Gateway Arch and Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Cuyahoga Valley brought the number of national parks that we explored on our journey to 9 - and that's not even counting sites managed by the National Park Service such as national forests, historic sites, lakeshores, memorials, monuments, preserves and the like!

The 27 campgrounds where we stayed were a combination of state parks, privately owned parks and RV parks. We started our location hunt by searching for places that offered Passport America, Good Sam or AAA discounts. Unfortunately, in this part of the country, the pickings in these programs were much slimmer than in other destinations where we've traveled. Because of this, we ended up buying a one year KOA membership. (By our second stay, we saved enough to make our membership worthwhile!)

Read on for more about our longest travel adventure to date ... including the ups and downs of living on the road!

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Round Trip Route Departing from Austin, Texas

We put a total of just over 14,450 miles on our tow vehicle on the round trip "loop" from our Austin, Texas area home. This map provides a visual of our route and is followed by a quick recap of each overnight stop along the way.


Round Trip Route from Austin, TX

Round Trip Route from Austin, TX

Distances from one campground / RV park to another are all approximate:

  • 365 miles from our Austin, Texas area home to Burns Run West in Cartwright, Oklahoma with a breakfast stop in Waco to meet up with visiting family;
  • 10 miles to Eisenhower State Park in Denison, Texas;
  • 265 miles to Twin Bridges Area at Grand Lake State Park in Fairland, Oklahoma;
  • 185 miles to the Kansas City suburb of Parkville, Missouri where we stayed with family;
  • 280 miles to Cahokia RV Parque in the St. Louis suburb of Cahokia, Illinois;
  • 120 miles to Cape Camping & RV Park in Cape Girardeau, Missouri;
  • 265 miles to Cave Country RV Park in Cave City, Kentucky;
  • 300 miles to Fort Wilderness RV Park and Campground in Whittier, North Carolina;
  • 55 miles to Asheville Bear Creek RV Park & Campground in Asheville, North Carolina;


    Asheville Bear Creek RV Park & Campground

    Asheville Bear Creek RV Park & Campground

  • 175 miles to Fancy Gap / Blue Ridge Parkway KOA in Fancy Gap, Virginia;
  • 110 miles to Shady Rest RV Park in Shady Spring, West Virginia;
  • 160 miles to Waynesboro North 340 Campground in Waynesboro, Virginia;
  • 135 miles to Brunswick Family Campground in Brunswick, Maryland;
  • 235 miles to Mountain Top Campground in the Pittsburgh suburb of Tarentum, Pennsylvania with a stop at the Flight 93 National Memorial while in route;
  • 125 miles to Streetsboro / Cleveland SE KOA in Streetsboro, Ohio;
  • 350 miles to Michigan City Campground in Michigan City, Indiana;
  • 275 miles to Indigo Bluffs RV Park in Empire, Michigan;
  • 145 miles to St. Ignace / Mackinac Island KOA in St. Ignace, Michigan;
  • 290 miles to Lake Linden Village Campground in Lake Linden, Michigan with a stop along the way at Pictured Rock National Lakeshore;


    Pictured Rock National Lakeshore

    Pictured Rock National Lakeshore

  • 325 miles to Hoodoo Point Campground in Tower, Minnesota;
  • 190 miles to Kozy Oaks Kamp in North Branch, Minnesota;
  • 240 miles to River Bay Premier Camping Resort in Lyndon Station, Wisconsin;
  • 135 miles to Country View Campground in Mukwanago, Wisconsin;


    Petting Zoo at Country View Campground

    Petting Zoo at Country View Campground

  • 195 miles to Park Terrace Campground at Westlake Park in Davenport, Iowa;
  • 305 miles to Buck Creek Campground (Rathbun Lake) in Moravia, Iowa via the Field of Dreams Movie Site;
  • 195 miles to Parkville, Missouri where we again stayed with and visited family;
  • 260 miles to ABC RV Park in Blackwell, Oklahoma;
  • 225 miles to Fun Town RV Park at WinStar in Thackerville, Oklahoma;
  • 130 miles to Oakdale Park in Glen Rose, Texas; and
  • 150 miles back to our Austin, Texas area home.

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Now, for more about what we saw along the way. Stay tuned for upcoming articles as we'll soon be sharing more about the best of our stops. You'll find ideas for what to see and do, where to stay and all of the don't miss points along the way.

1 Night at Burns Run West

We had already reserved campsites for most of our trip, and just days before departing we learned that a family member would be in Waco. We decided to leave one day early to meet for breakfast, but there were no available sites where were staying on our first 2 nights away. We reserved 1 night at the nearby Burns Run West - we never even disconnected our our vehicle from our trailer!


Camping at Oklahoma's Burns Run West

Camping at Oklahoma's Burns Run West

2 Nights at Eisenhower State Park

As Texas State Parks Passholders, we receive a 50% discount on the second consecutive night of camping at Texas state parks. Denison, Texas is the home of Eisenhower State Park and the birthplace of President Dwight Eisenhower. We spent most of our day time hours exploring sites related to the nation's first president born in Texas.


Dwight D. Eisenhower Veterans Monument

Dwight D. Eisenhower Veterans Monument

3 Nights at Twin Bridges Area at Grand Lake State Park

The city of Miami was only about a 15 minute drive from our campsite in Oklahoma's Grand Lake State Park. We arranged a tour of the Coleman Theater, a 1929 era performance venue on US Route 66, and also explored a number of other historic sites on the "Mother Road".


Street Art in Miami, Oklahoma

Street Art in Miami, Oklahoma

6 Nights in Parkville, Missouri

Most of our time in Parkville was spent visiting family. We even talked two of Scott's siblings into joining us for a little sightseeing! We spent one day riding the streetcars to explore downtown Kansas City and another on a private tour through the Jamesport Amish Community.


Traveling the Country Roads in Jamesport, Missouri

Traveling the Country Roads in Jamesport, Missouri

7 Nights at Cahokia RV Parque

Cahokia RV Parque, allowed us to explore both St. Louis, Missouri as well as Cahokia, a small village in southwest Illinois. Since Route 66 started in Chicago, just 300 miles north of St. Louis, we had fun tasting some local Route 66 era treasures including frozen custard and pretzels!

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One of the main goals for our longest RV adventure to date was to explore national parks that we hadn't previously visited. Over 15 years ago we enjoyed the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial - before it was a national park. We can now say that we have also experienced the Gateway Arch National Park!


Looking Down Upon St. Louis from the Top of the Gateway Arch

Looking Down Upon St. Louis from the Top of the Gateway Arch

We walked into the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis just as the first guided tour in over a year was starting. Lucky for us, we were invited to join the small group on a walk through one of the most beautiful basilicas we've ever seen.


Inside the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis

Inside the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis

4 Nights at Cape Camping & RV Park

We reserved our stay at the Good Sam member Cape Camping & RV Park to visit two of Missouri's state parks that have been on our radar. Elephant Rocks State Park and Johnson Shut-ins State Park did not disappoint. In fact, we found so much more near the RV Park that we wished we had more time in the area!


Looking Out from atop the Elephant Rocks

Looking Out from atop the Elephant Rocks

4 Nights at Cave Country RV Campground

We had two sites on our list when we reserved Cave Country RV Campground. We checked off both Mammoth Cave National Park and the Corvette Museum during our stay at the Good Sam campground - plus a number of other nearby attractions.


Entering Mammoth Cave National Park

Entering Mammoth Cave National Park

Taking a Spin in the Corvette Simulator

Taking a Spin in the Corvette Simulator

Prior to our stop, we didn't even realize that the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Park was only about 45 minutes away from where we would be camping!

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2 Nights at Fort Wilderness RV Park and Campground

The only reason that we reserved two nights at Fort Wilderness RV Park and Campground (a Good Sam park) was because we couldn't find availability in any of the Asheville campgrounds over Memorial Day Weekend. We didn't realize how much there was to see and do in the nearby town of Cherokee, NC! We spent our single day revisiting a small corner of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, hiking to waterfalls and driving a section of the Blue Ridge Parkway.


Looking Glass Falls

Looking Glass Falls

8 Nights at Asheville Bear Creek RV Park & Campground

Asheville has been on my dream destination list for many years. I was so excited once we rearranged our arrival dates and found an opening at Asheville Bear Creek RV Park & Campground. (The park offers a 10% discount to members of either AAA or Good Sam.) We wandered around the city of Asheville and also spent a full day visiting the Biltmore Estate.


Exploring the Grounds of the Biltmore Estate

Exploring the Grounds of the Biltmore Estate

Of course, we drove along more of the Blue Ridge Parkway, explored the Pisgah National Forest and also did some climbing (stairs, that is) at Chimney Rock State Park.


Enjoying the View from Chimney Rock State Park

Enjoying the View from Chimney Rock State Park

2 Nights at Fancy Gap / Blue Ridge Parkway KOA

Once Scott realized how close we would be to the hometown of Andy Griffith (and inspiration for the fictional city of Mayberry), he reserved a short stay at Fancy Gap / Blue Ridge Parkway KOA. We had just enough time to take a private Squad Car Tour around Mount Airy as well as photograph some of the iconic real-life places that were an inspiration for the show including Floyd's Barber Shop and Snappy Lunch.


Getting a Shave at Floyd's Barber Shop!

Getting a Shave at Floyd's Barber Shop!

11 Nights at Shady Rest RV Park

What started as 3 nights at Shady Rest RV Park expanded to 11 nights after a fall (not the waterfall kind) at New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. We used the extra time to explore more of the national park than we ever thought we'd have the time to see.


Turkey Spur Overlook in New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Turkey Spur Overlook in New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

In addition to several urgent care trips, we also used our extra days for a tour of the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine and a day trip out to the Monongahela National Forest. (Although we were forced to cancel our planned three-night stay in Cass, WV, we still were able to see some of what we had hoped to see!)


Driving Through Monongahela National Forest

Driving Through Monongahela National Forest

The one thing that we missed out on was a 1/2 day River Rafting trip on the New River - with 10 stitches still holding the skin of Scott's knee together, it just didn't make sense. (Hopefully we will make it back to West Virginia's only national park within the next two years before our rain check expires!)

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3 Nights at Waynesboro North 340 Campground

Our original plan for spending 5 nights at Waynesboro North 340 Campground was reduced to 3 nights. We were able to condense our plans for exploring the nearby area and still made it out to Monticello. Unfortunately, the weather was less than cooperative on the day that we spent exploring Shenandoah National Park.


Thomas Jefferson and Monticello

Thomas Jefferson and Monticello

Skyline Drive Viewpoint in Shenandoah National Park

Skyline Drive Viewpoint in Shenandoah National Park

3 Nights at Brunswick Family Campground

Brunswick Family Campground was the last of our pre-reserved campsites that we were forced to change at the last minute. Our 6 night stay was reduced to 3, and by using every minute of each day, we found the time to explore Harpers Ferry National Historical Park plus drive to both Gettysburg and Hershey, Pennsylvania.


The Point Lookout at Harpers Ferry

The Point Lookout at Harpers Ferry

5 Nights at Mountain Top Campground

On our way to the Pittsburgh area of Pennsylvania, we made a stop at the Flight 93 National Memorial. We arrived just in time for The Story of Flight 93, a ranger led program offered daily in memory of the 20th anniversary of the tragic events of September 11, 2001.


Flight 93 National Memorial

Flight 93 National Memorial

Mountain Top Campground provided us with relatively easy access to the "steel city", where we spent the majority of our time. Our favorite views of the Pittsburgh skyline as well as the city's three rivers were from the top of Mt. Washington and from our ride aboard the Gateway Clipper. Even though it rained, our tour of Carrie Blast Furnaces was fascinating!


Pittsburgh Skyline from Mt. Washington

Pittsburgh Skyline from Mt. Washington

9 Nights at Streetsboro / Cleveland SE KOA

The main reason that Cleveland made our route was because of Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Once we started researching the city, we found so many more places that we were interested in exploring.


Brandywine Falls at Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Brandywine Falls at Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Our stay at Streetsboro / Cleveland SE KOA included the 4th of July, so we got to join in on some of the fun activities that the campground had planned for guests.

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Two obvious places that we had to visit (both of which we enjoyed) were the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Pro-Football Hall of Fame. We didn't realize how many presidential historic sites and memorials were in the area as well. We learned more about James A. Garfield, William McKinley and many of the First Ladies than we ever thought we would.


William McKinley Memorial

William McKinley Memorial

6 Nights at Michigan City Campground

Nearly a week at Michigan City Campground allowed us to explore the state and national parks which share the name Indiana Dunes. From hiking to beach going and scenic driving to boat riding, we actually checked off everything on our list!


Found a Near Private Beach at Indiana Dunes National Park

Found a Near Private Beach at Indiana Dunes National Park

We even ventured out for two short day trips - one to see all of the candy available at Albanese Confectionery Group and the other to wander around the University of Notre Dame.


Exploring the Famous Notre Dame Campus

Exploring the Famous Notre Dame Campus

1 Night at Indigo Bluffs RV Park

Several people that we met along our journey encouraged us to visit Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. We cut our Michigan City stay short by a day to add a stay at Indigo Bluffs RV Park to see what everyone was talking about. Although less than a day was not nearly enough time, we enjoyed driving the Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive and watching people climb the dunes.


Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

3 Nights at St. Ignace / Mackinac Island KOA

We had to also shorten our stay at St. Ignace / Mackinac Island KOA by one day in order to make it to the least visited national park in the lower 48! Truth be told, we got a little worried that we were going to have to find a place to boon dock on what was to be our first night in St. Ignace. The Mackinac Bridge was shut down due to a bomb threat just minutes before we would have begun our crossing. After about three hours, it was reopened once it was determined that there was no evidence of a bomb!

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We spent our first full day exploring Mackinac Island. Our day started (and ended) with a ferry ride to (and from) the island. Two highlights of our day were a horse-drawn carriage tour and a self-guided tour plus drinks on the balcony of The Grand.


Sipping Adult Beverages on the Balcony of The Grand

Sipping Adult Beverages on the Balcony of The Grand

5 Nights at Lake Linden Village Campground

There are only two ways to get to Isle Royale National Park - by boat or by seaplane. We did limited research before we left home and learned that the most economical option was traveling via boat. We also discovered that we could could take a morning boat ride, spend about 3 hours at the national park and return that same evening. What we didn't fully research was the frequency of the day trips.

Several weeks before our planned arrival, we realized that we better get our transportation lined up. That's when we learned that there was no round trip boat service on any of the 4 potential days that we had earmarked for our visit. (We found openings on one boat that could get us to the island, but there were no return options during our planned stay.) The good news was that, by arriving one day earlier at Lake Linden Village Campground, we could ride the Isle Royale Queen IV out and back on the same day with some limited time for hiking in between.


Isle Royale Queen IV docked at Rock Harbor

Isle Royale Queen IV docked at Rock Harbor

We filled our extra time exploring the Keweenaw Peninsula. We chased waterfalls, searched for lighthouses, taste tested pasties, hiked ... and even wandered through the Delaware Copper Mine.


Eagle Harbor Lighthouse

Eagle Harbor Lighthouse

3 Nights at Hoodoo Point Campground

We visited the last of the national parks on our 4 month adventure while staying at Hoodoo Point Campground. We started our day at the only open visitor center inside Voyageurs National Park. We followed the suggestions of volunteers and rangers on site by doing some hiking and then wrapping up our day relaxing and enjoying the view from perfectly positioned Adirondack chairs.


Viewpoint in Voyageurs National Park

Viewpoint in Voyageurs National Park

We had already toured a coal mine and a copper mine on our journey, so we added a tour of an iron mine during our extra day in northeastern Minnesota.

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4 Nights at Kozy Oaks Kamp

There were three "tourist sites" that we hoped to see in the neighborhoods surrounding Minneapolis. We chose Kozy Oaks Kamp for our 4 nights and ventured out each morning completely filling our 3 days. We toured Paisley Park and walked around and around and around again at the Mall of America.


Outside Paisley Park

Outside Paisley Park

Another highlight of our stay was exploring both the Kensington Rune Stone Park and Runestone Museum.


Kensington Rune Stone

Kensington Rune Stone

5 Nights at River Bay Premier Camping Resort

The Wisconsin Dells has long been on our "bucket list". Our stay at River Bay Premier Camping Resort (a Passport America member park ) would finally give us the opportunity. Although somewhat repetitive, an Upper Gorge Boat Tour, Historic Trolley Tour and Lost Canyon Horse Carriage Tour gave us plenty of history on the area.


Exploring Witches Gulch on the Wisconsin Dells Upper Canyon Boat Tour

Exploring Witches Gulch on the Wisconsin Dells Upper Canyon Boat Tour

Devils Lake State Park is said to be Wisconsin's most popular park. Since it was less than 30 minutes away from our campground, we devoted one of our days to hiking around the lake. Although the day was rainy, it was still easy to understand why locals keep returning to the park.


Hiking at Devils Lake State Park

Hiking at Devils Lake State Park

4 Nights at Country View Campground

With family living in several Milwaukee suburbs, our campground search led us to Country View Campground. Although we didn't know it when we made our reservations, it was very near The Elegant Farmer, famous for apple pies that are baked (and sold) in a paper bag!


The Elegant Farmer's Famous Apple Pie

The Elegant Farmer's Famous Apple Pie

We spent most of our time visiting with family, but we were able to talk some of them into joining us for sightseeing in Milwaukee. Pabst Mansion and Lannon Sunflower Farm were two of our favorites.


Pabst Mansion with Family

Pabst Mansion with Family

5 Nights at Park Terrace Campground at Westlake Park

We added the last state sticker for the trip to our U. S. map while we were at Park Terrace Campground at Westlake Park inIowa. (After we camp in each state for the first time, we add the state's sticker to the map on our slide-out. We actually made it to 11 states that we hadn't previously camped in during this four month trip!)


33 States and Counting!

33 States and Counting!

Since we both enjoy watching the television show American Pickers, we wanted to visit the original Antique Archaeology store/museum in LeClaire. As usual, we found a number of other places to occupy our time including the Rock Island Arsenal and World's Largest Truck Stop.


Antique  Archaeology

Antique Archaeology

We also spent a day hopping on and off of the Channel Cat Water Taxi to get a brief introduction to three of the four Quad Cities.


Channel Cat Water Taxi

Channel Cat Water Taxi

1 Night at Buck Creek Campground (Rathbun Lake)

Our original plan was to make a stop at the Field of Dreams Movie Site on our drive between Wisconsin and Iowa several days earlier. Unfortunately, it was closed due to the MLB at Field of Dreams Game. Although it was a bit out of our way, we decided to make the stop on our way toward Rathbun Lake.


Field of Dreams Movie Site

Field of Dreams Movie Site

We had planned on staying 2 nights at Buck Creek Campground, however changed our schedule to just 1 night due to a family emergency.

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7 Nights in Parkville, Missouri

Our 7 nights in Parkville were again spent with family - this time Scott's son was even able to join us from California. The week also gave Scott and his brother the opportunity to work together on a project - a DIY repair of damage done to "RV There Yet?" during the early days of our long adventure.

1 Night at ABC RV Park

We didn't even disconnect the RV from our tow vehicle during our stay in Blackwell, Oklahoma. There were several restaurants within walking distance of ABC RV Park, so we got a bit to eat along with a little exercise after our long drive.

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2 Nights at Fun Town RV Park at WinStar

We've driven by the WinStar World Casino countless times during our drives north and south along IH-35. This time, we finally got a chance to check out the complex which includes the Fun Town RV Park at WinStar.


Parked at Fun Town RV Park at WinStar

Parked at Fun Town RV Park at WinStar

Lucky for us, WinStar is in a good location for RV journeys that take us north from Texas. We had fun "spinning" the slot machines a few times times, eating dinner at 2 of the restaurants and exploring both the inside and outside of the casino.


"New York" at WinStar World Casino

"New York" at WinStar World Casino

1 Night at Oakdale Park

Our last night before returning home was spent in Glen Rose, Texas. We again left our RV hitched to our tow vehicle and just took a walk into the historic town to eat dinner and decide if we should return. Our conclusion was "yes" - Oakdale Park is the home of a huge swimming pool (the largest in Texas when it opened in 1925). The Paluxy River and Big Rocks Recreational Area are right across the street and Dinosaur Valley State Park is a short drive away.


Walking to Historic Glen Rose

Walking to Historic Glen Rose

The Ups and Downs of our Adventure!

Every journey has its ups and downs, and this one was no exception.

Maintenance and Repair Services

Fortunately, we had no flat tires or car repairs that needed immediate attention. Sadly, however, at some point during our drive between Cahokia, Illinois and Cape Girardeau, Missouri, something (probably a semi-truck) side swiped our RV causing minor damage to the driver's side slide-out.


How Can This Happen Without Us Feeling Anything?

How Can This Happen Without Us Feeling Anything?

United States Postal Service Temporary Mail Forwarding

We have found that one of the most difficult things about extended vacations of any kind is finding good solutions for mail service. Since we have chosen electronic delivery for all of our regular bills and statements, we actually get very little mail that needs our attention. There are, of course, some items that are mailed to us that we aren't expecting.

We have taken several of our neighbors up on their offers to pick-up our mail and hold it for us, but 4 months seemed like such a long time. We didn't want to take advantage of their kindness, especially knowing that we might need their assistance in the future.

Since we would be away from home for about 120 days, the 30-day hold mail option available at USPS wasn't helpful. (Plus, during a previous month long trip that we extended to 7-weeks, our local post office was not at all helpful with extending our "hold mail service".)

Since we aren't full-timers, the mail services offered by some of the RV clubs and mail service businesses don't quite meet our needs. We prefer to receive mail at our home when we are in town. It is just those few times when we will be away for a longer period of time time that we need to know when something important arrives.

Our planned route had us passing through Missouri both near both the beginning and end of our trip. Since Scott has family there, we realized that we could use the home of Scott's brother and sister-in-law as our temporary home. For a specified period of time (generally between two weeks and six months), temporary mail forwarding would allow for most of our mail (excluding junk mail) to be forwarded to their address. Scott's brother was even kind enough to send us a text or give us a call when we received anything that looked like it might be important.

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Changes to a Planned Itinerary

The importance of flexibility was definitely reinforced on our four month journey. Prior to leaving home, we had made reservations for the majority of our stays. One of many downsides of having an injury that requires a trip to the emergency room is the need to limit activity to allow for recovery time. This, of course, meant changing (or cancelling) some of our pre-booked stays and activities. After reviewing all of our plans, we figured out how to rearrange our itinerary with the least disruption. By canceling one stop and reducing the length of our stay at two others, we could stay the extra days needed for doctor visits near Beckley, West Virginia.


Returning to the Scene of the Fall

Returning to the Scene of the Fall

The plus side is that most people with whom we spoke were helpful and flexible:

  • Both Monticello and Hershey allowed us to change our reservation dates at no charge;
  • Since no advance deposit was required, reducing the length of our stay and changing both our dates of arrival and departure was easy at Waynesboro North 340 Campground;
  • As detailed in the confirmation e-mail that we received at the time that we made our reservation at Brunswick Family Campground, a non-expiring credit (valid for apparel, water sport activities, camping and more) was issued for the unused portion of our stay;
  • A credit valid for 2 years was issued by Adventures on the Gorge for a river rafting trip scheduled for the day after the accident. (This credit actually came as a surprise since our cancellation request was made less than 24 hours before the start time of our trip and we declined the insurance coverage that was offered at the time of our purchase.)
  • Whitaker Campground gave us a 50% refund on our deposit. The good news is that we were out only $25.00 plus the time it took to make additional phone calls to actually get the promised refund!

America the Beautiful National Parks Pass

If you are considering visits to some of the national parks in the United States, take a look at our post titled "Is the America the Beautiful National Parks Annual Pass Worth the Annual Fee?". After 2 years of being holders of the national parks pass, we provide a detailed analysis to help you decide whether or not this pass is right for you.

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Campground and RV Park Reservations

When traveling by RV, how much in advance of your planned stays do you make reservations at your preferred campgrounds or RV parks?




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9 National Parks, 15 States and 27 Campgrounds in 4 Months





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