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Old 09-27-2014, 06:07 AM   #1
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Campground options

My husband and I will be purchasing our first RV (Airstream Flying Cloud 25) in a couple of days. I am trying to get an understanding of the most affordable and convenient places to stay while traveling; government parks, clubs, groups, etc. The more I look the more confused I get. If anybody could offer some clarification I would greatly appreciate it.

Tamara
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Old 09-27-2014, 06:20 AM   #2
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Options such as options available on the Airstream, or options such as places to camp?

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Old 09-27-2014, 06:24 AM   #3
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Woops, I can see how my question is confusing. Places to camp. I edited my first post to clarify my question.
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Old 09-27-2014, 06:27 AM   #4
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Hi - welcome and congrats!


Usually state parks are less expensive than "chain" sites like KOA. There's a lot to choose from - we use the Allstays app to find them and get reviews. It's $10 but we thought it was well worth it. Good luck!
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Old 09-27-2014, 06:28 AM   #5
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In Florida, the state parks are very nice, and from my experience, the more affordable places to stay. Sometimes it can be a little difficult getting reservations at the more popular ones though. Lots of people on this forum have recommended the Corps of Engineers sites... I've never stayed at one, but they get lots of positive posts. As far as commercial campgrounds, my experience has been, the nicer the campground, or the more desirable the location, the higher the price.

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Old 09-27-2014, 06:30 AM   #6
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...and, congrats, in advance, on getting the new Airstream.

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Old 09-27-2014, 06:33 AM   #7
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It all depends upon whether or not you need hookups - elec, water, and/or sewer. Usually the fewer the hookups or lack thereof, the less expensive the campground. I have found over the years the campgrounds in state parks are very nice, usually cheaper, and often have better scenery and sometimes even full hookups. This is usually my first choice. If you don't need hookups they expands your choices exponentially. If I don't need hookups, then I usually search for campgrounds in national forests or BLM land if out west.
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Old 09-27-2014, 06:59 AM   #8
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If you are able to get the Access Pass for Nat. Parks and other governmental facilities it gives you not only free admission but often half price camping. A very good value. If you are retired military there are many military bases with camping facilities at a good value. National Forests often allow free dispersed camping but check their policies first. While on the road Walmart, Cracker Barrel, Flying J ( truck stops) often allow free overnighting so we have lots of options. Read on it's all on the forums somewhere.

Enjoy and See ya on the road sometime.
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Old 09-27-2014, 07:15 AM   #9
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If you are able to get the Access Pass for Nat. Parks and other governmental facilities it gives you not only free admission but often half price camping. A very good value.
Even without the "America the Beautiful" Access Pass or Senior Pass, Corps of Engineers campgrounds are a good value, at $18 to $26 per night depending on which campground and whether you want a premium or standard site (premium tend to have better views).

If you join a camping club, you often get discounted rates. Good Sam offers 10% off at many campgrounds, especially since they merged with CampUSA. Passport America offers 50% off at their affiliated campgrounds, but often with restrictions such as only the first night, or only weekdays. KOA offers discounts as well, but since they're priced so high to begin with, membership just brings them down closer to a competitive range. WBCCI, the "official" Airstream club, offers some Airstream-only campgrounds that are usually inexpensive, but doesn't offer discounts elsewhere. Plus while you're en route, individual WBCCI members offer courtesy parking at the price of absolutely no money whatsoever.
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Old 09-27-2014, 08:21 AM   #10
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Congrats and welcome. As said, Allstays is the most comprehensive guide you will find...buy it.
You need to decide what kind of camping you like before your question can really be answered.
We concluded we like full hookups but on the road, for a few days, we have found the Corps of Engineers campgrounds to be the nicest power and water only sites for a very fair price. We just do not like having to conserve grey water or go dump black water, thus full hookups. Despite the bad press here we belong to KOA. We have found the facilities to be uniformly clean, supportive, and it most locations. There are many lower priced ways to camp, but what we do it "get away from home", not camp.
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Old 09-27-2014, 09:14 AM   #11
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Your camping fees can be 0 to much more than what you want to pay, not all are priced by what they offer, research and reviews will help once you decide what you have to have for a comfortable stay.
Personally when the curtains are closed all places are about the same, exceptions being RR tracks, highway noise, parking lot sweepers, garbage trucks and police or security guards knocking

Since you haven't purchased yet, easier to do your research to buy the right unit already installed with all those things that will give you comfort.
All have onboard utilities, cooking, sleeping and lounging but they vary from minimulist to glampers. Even the choice of 25 over the 16 or 32 comes back to the individuals research and expectations of what camping should be, ours changed with aging.

Good luck on finding exactly what you want or need.
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Old 09-27-2014, 10:11 AM   #12
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I will second the All Stays suggestion. We have used it while on the road and a few times it has saved us. Getting into an area late and finding our first choice was a no go gave us a place to turn.

My problem with your question is that it really depends on lots of variables. When we go "camping" it usually means dry camping. We go to state parks and will camp for free on federal land at times. When we have a big get together we usually look for places with hookups. When we are on the road traveling we will use lots of different places. We do use KOAs when traveling mainly because they are easy to find, usually easy to get into and always offer laundry facilities.

One of our best finds was through All Stays. We were stranded and found out that the local fairgrounds had camping spots with water and electricity. They also had nice bathroom facilities all at $5 a night. Part of the fun of getting out comes with the challenge of finding good places to stay.

Good luck to you and enjoy the "chase".
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Old 09-27-2014, 11:07 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by luckier View Post
My husband and I will be purchasing our first RV (Airstream Flying Cloud 25) in a couple of days. I am trying to get an understanding of the most affordable and convenient places to stay while traveling; government parks, clubs, groups, etc. The more I look the more confused I get. If anybody could offer some clarification I would greatly appreciate it.

Tamara
Tamara,

You could visit a few campgrounds in your area to look at the facilities and understand what is offered. From Clemmons you could visit all of the seven listed below in a one day trip (and see the fall leaves too).

Oak Hollow High Point City Park
Tanglewood County Park
Stone Mountain State Park
Hanging Rock State Park
Pilot Mountain State Park
Fort Hamby Corps of Engineers Park
Julian Price National Park Service (you can get an access pass here if you qualify)


If you ride the on the BRP between US-52 and Julian Price you will see signs for a few private campgrounds along the way. I've driven through a few but not stayed in any of them.

There is also Lake Jordan Park, Morrow Mountain State Park, Lake Norman State Park, and Dan Nicholas County park, but in a different direction.

And there is Virginia Highland Haven, one of the prettiest views I've seen in a campground. It's Airstream only. Closes for the winter on 15 Oct.

I have not used the private campgrounds in our home area so I cannot advise you. (I'm 20 miles south of you)

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-27-2014, 11:27 AM   #14
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Campground options

Here in Fl there is a lot of nice county parks as well. Many of them are not on the reserve America site, so you have to call the park directly. They can be hard to find at times but are worth the effort.

The cost is about the same as the state parks, many times easer to get in since the are off the big web sites.


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