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RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

lincoln
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RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

Hi we are a UK family of five planning our first and probably last whole family vacation (eldest daughter turns 18 this year!) other two kids 15 and 9

We've done Florida a few times but never west coast, in Europe we've driven to the south of france 900 miles over two days many times we are not afraid to do a few miles, we have a draft itinerary as follows:

6th Aug arrive Vegas 2 nights at TI

8th Aug11.00 collect 31 ft RV (apollo), hoover dam stop on way to booked RV park at Trailer village at GC Idea to get there for sun set and up early next day for sun rise

9th Aug mid pm head back past vegas heading to truck stop on 95 when we can drive no more

10th Aug take 266 and 168 to get to the 395 to head north to RV park near Mono lake (not booked yet) RV not allowed in death valley area in August, probably too hot anyhow!

11th which route to SF? tioga pass or head north via Sacramento?

We have booked 11th and 12th RV park San Francisco RV and Camping Resort so 2 days to explore SF no driving! Alcatraz etc

13th mid pm head south on PC 1 stay overnight at Monterey (not yet booked) ?

14th travel down PC1 to Santa Barbara Sunrise RV Park (not yet booked) ?

15th short leg to Malibu (not yet booked place yet) suggestions?

16th RV back to LA Apollo 13820 Hawthorne Blvd by 1400

Then we have 5 nights in hotel in Orange county to chill and do the LA thing

Im sure were doing one hell of a road trip milage wise but really need to cram it in as we can chill in LA afterwards

last question I really want to visit a big Carrier, should we go to

USS Midway Museum at S Diego maybe by train from LA for the day or

see the USS hornet when in San Fran?, on looks the midway looks bigger and better?

all comments most welcome thanks

Uden, The...
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1. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

HI and welcome to the forum.

Picking up an RV by 11.00 am does not say you're on the road. Explanations and all easily can take 2 hours and you'll have to do your shopping and that also can take several hours. And with an RV it takes at least 5 hours driving from Las Vegas to GCNP without the Hoover Dam stop.

I don't know where you want to spend the night on 95 but from Las Vegas, Beatty is the first town and from GC that will be an 8 hours drive with an RV and LV traffic can slow you down.

266 is pretty easy but also hot and deserted, but 168 over Westgard pass is a steep and winding mountain drive and you have to be careful driving this road with an 31' RV. It will be easier to drive via Tonopah to Mono Lake.

You can drive Tioga Pass to Yosemite and to SF from Mono Lake in one day but you will have very little time to see a bit of this majestic but very busy National Park.

Also the drive between Monterey and Santa Barbara will be a long one. People spend all day but you really won''t have time to explore too many places along the gorgeous coast. Suggest to stay closer to Monterey like in Cambria or Pismo Beach.

Have you considered to rent a car for your LA/SD visits?

Tet

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2. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

The San Francisco RV Resort is in a little town south of SF called Pacifica. It's not easy to get from there to SF via public transit -- it requires a bus to BART and then BART into the city. And from what I understand the bus service between Pacifica and BART isn't particularly frequent or reliable.

Trying to do SF while having an RV is not an easy task. The only RV parking area in the city is located on the far south side of town and not in a nice neighborhood. There is another in Marin County which is walking distance (perhaps 10 minutes) of the Larkspur Ferry. While the ferry doesn't run often at least it's only one mode of transit to get to town.

Come over to the SF forum. Do a search on "RV" and you'll find what info we've given others and feel free to start a thread specific to this issue. Because it is an "issue" which will prevent you from having as much time in the city as you might want given bus/ferry schedules and commute time.

San Francisco Bay
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3. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

I'm hoping that your pilot is very fond of driving for hours and hours! This is a lot of miles, and not a lot of seeing the wonderful sights that are here. If I were you, I'd cut out some parts of this trip to make sure that you actually enjoyed the parts you would see. 5 nights in a hotel in Orange County sounds like some sort of torture to me. I'd give up some of that for more time in Yosemite after you get there through the Tioga Pass, and another day in SF because you are going to spend a lot of time commuting to the City of San Francisco, and may not be able to be there at night due to poor transport options to Pacifica.

lincoln
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4. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

Thanks for the quick replies, as always its going to be a compromise, LA part at the end will include a universal day bribe to keep the kids quiet when on the long hauls!

Rv is a US wanderer 6.8L v10 C class, will I be able to cruise at 60 - 70 on the flat on decent roads?

shame GC is going the wrong way but its too much of a high light to pass on

Thanks for info on Westgard pass, but will that mean missing anything exciting on the 395?

I will research SF again, but I also found very limited RV friendly places closer to town, think we will just have to grab a cab to get to the BART to maximise travel time and convenience

Am I likely to hit slow traffic all the time on the PC1 in August? or just hot spots at the popular places?

Washington State
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5. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

This would be a fabulous trip in a car. It will be a *very* challenging trip in an RV. I think you'd have a much better time with an RV rental if you just visited natural places (state parks, National Parks, etc.) This trip is a city-centric, many-miles, heat-of-summer trip. Did you read the "RVing in California: Is it Right for you?" Top Question on the right?

Hwy 1 will be full of traffic in August. You'll be the slow one.

Read the Los Angeles forum Top Questions on the right side of that page for L.A. ideas. If you're staying in Orange County, remember to add in hours for your transit to L.A.

Uden, The...
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6. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

Strong winds can prevend driving 70 mph on the interstates and trucks still will be passing you. Entering Mono Lake via 120 is scenic as well. You'll miss the stretch from Big Pine to Mono Lake via Bishop (Laws Museum). Driving 168 there's a side road to the old Bristlecones in the mountains on twisty roads.

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7. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

>> will I be able to cruise at 60 - 70 on the flat on decent roads? <<

60 yes.

70 NO.

I have been RVing for many many years. Please, please do not drive a motorhome like you drive your car at home!

Tet14 is right that you may experience strong winds in the desert and you MUST slow down.

You have an awful lot of driving planned. Hopefully two drivers?

Do book your RV parks ahead on the California coast. Summers are *very* busy. I agree - post on the San Francisco forum for more information about RVing around there. It's not easy and takes planning, but can be done. Just be prepared :-)

>>9th Aug mid pm head back past vegas heading to truck stop on 95<<

You can always park free at a truck stop, just tuck yourselves into a corner, out of the way of the big rigs.

Oregon Coast
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8. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

These websites will help you locate RV parks:

http://www.rvparkreviews.com/index.html (all RV park reviews by RVers only– excellent )

http://camp-california.com/

http://www.rv-clubs.us/rv_campgrounds.html

http://www.rvparkhunter.com/page2.asp

http://www.koa.com

Uden, The...
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9. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

There's a truckstop with parking and amenities at the junction of 373 and 95 in Amargosa Valley.

lincoln
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10. Re: RV road trip August 2013 vegas GC SF and LA advice please!

Brilliant thanks for the info, yes we are sharing the driving so that will help! Thanks again! appreciated