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Old 11-23-2013, 06:05 PM   #29
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On certain trips we used to drive straight on through. Now we break them into 2-day drives . We are lucky that we have discovered some great campgrounds.
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Old 11-23-2013, 07:20 PM   #30
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Rest stop rules and corresponding signage vary from state to state. You can usually google the rest stop rules pretty easily. We use them on occasion and have a couple of favorites here and there. But they are generally bright and noisy. Likewise walmart.
We much prefer seeking out a state or county park with or without hookups. Depending on state, location and time of year they can be less than 20 bucks and the sleep we get is high quality. For catnaps or get out of the severe weather stops we've done church parking lots, abandoned gas stations and even hotel lots. Free sleep is ok but quality sleep is much preferred.
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Old 11-23-2013, 08:49 PM   #31
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FYI NJ prohibits idling in the rest areas. it was one of the quietest overnights other than campgrounds.
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Old 11-23-2013, 09:20 PM   #32
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Don't forget about courtesy parking here on Airforums. Some people have hook ups or will allow you to dump & take on fresh water.
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:35 PM   #33
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I travel from NJ to Chicago and beyond often. Rt 80 in Obio is great for overnight, they have an RV section with power, but u can get water and dump in Am, cost a little$$. I travel along, Si am female and feel safe there. Sometimes by early evening there is a little village of people tnere.
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:11 AM   #34
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Sbb...was just going to add same information...think there are 4 going East and 4 going West...we found their locations on the internet...not sure what we searched for but they were there...we actually pulled into one to see the setup...very nice...on opposite side of rest stop from the truckers...well lit...would stay in a heartbeat if I needed to...what surprised me about the trip along the toll road was the total cost from Chicago to PA and back...was shocked when I got my IPass bill and it was well over 80.00...made me rethink my travels and in the future when I'm retired and not in a hurry...we'll travel the roads less traveled and get off the toll roads and hit the secondary roads...cheaper...prettier...and you'll see more of the gold ole U.S.A...happy travels...JIM
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:34 AM   #35
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It is legal in Texas. I stopped once near Junction in a gaggle of semis, all idling. In the middle of the night, my propane detector went off from all of the exhaust fumes. Scared the dickens out of me and that was the end of my sleep for the night.
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Old 11-24-2013, 02:18 PM   #36
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It is legal in Texas. I stopped once near Junction in a gaggle of semis, all idling. In the middle of the night, my propane detector went off from all of the exhaust fumes. Scared the dickens out of me and that was the end of my sleep for the night.
Indeed! One of our favorite rest stops is at the LBJ ranch in Stonewall out in the Hill Country. Wifi too....and nicely situated between Fredericksburg and Johnson City. There is an awesome flea market just a few miles west the third weekend of each month. Route 290. Secondary roads are awesome in Texas.
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Old 11-24-2013, 02:44 PM   #37
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Rest Area Camping

We've never overnighted in a rest area but we have stopped and eaten lunch at rest areas and a few times have taken a nap on long drives. We also use rest areas to walk and stretch every couple of hours. I've never noticed the peculiar "odor" mentioned by others on this thread.

Once we stayed at a Cracker Barrel (La Grange, GA). We called about an hour before arriving and asked permission of the manager to park overnight. He encouraged us to come and patronize the restaurant for dinner and breakfast which we did. We were the only overnight guests and experienced no issues. We've never stayed overnight at a Walmart, church parking lot, or shopping center.

We have taken advantage of courtesy parking.

On our recent two month trip west we overnighted frequently at state and local parks within 20 miles of the routes we were traveling. State parks are low cost, safe, generally well maintained, and quiet plus usually have water and electrical hookups and a dump station. Some have full hookups.

If we were going to stay at a Wal-Mart parking lot, or a Cracker Barrel again, we would definitely call ahead and ask for permission to park. We understand from other campers the manager will tell you if there is a potential safety issue in the parking lot. Of course the manager will also tell you if there is a local ordinance against overnighting.

The Allstays APP is good for locating parks along your route as well as camper friendly Wal-Marts, Kmarts, Cabellas, Cracker Barrels.

I wouldn't hesitate to overnight in a rest area with trucks or other campers parked in the parking lot unless there was a sign indicating overnight parking is prohibited. I would be cautious about staying overnight in rest areas without much traffic as well as those near urban areas known to have crime problems. We happen to feel safer spending a few dollars to overnight in a state park so we take full advantage of them.
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Old 11-24-2013, 03:16 PM   #38
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A big negative aspect of rest areas and trucks stops is this-
Apparently most truckers are lazy and unsanitary-
The whole pavement reeks of urine- like they are too lazy to walk to the building and they just pee beside their trucks-
Anyway, the odor offends my nose and I dread having to stop at one of these places-
I hate for my shoe to touch the urine soaked pavement and then have to go in my trailer or pickup...
As a retired truck driver with close to 3,000,000 miles, I take offense at your remark. Sal
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Old 11-24-2013, 04:23 PM   #39
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... And I take offense to people peeing on the ground and having to walk in it or smell it...when the building is fairly close by...it is one of those things that should not be...it is one of those annoying things that no one should have to experience...and I still don't want to spend the night at a truck stop or rest area...besides the trucks coming and going, doors closing, headlights shining in...can't get any rest that way...
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:13 PM   #40
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m.hony - Obviously Sal was not one of these people so lets not lump them all together.

Thanks for the info everyone def a lot to consider
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:59 PM   #41
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... And I take offense to people peeing on the ground and having to walk in it or smell it...when the building is fairly close by...it is one of those things that should not be...it is one of those annoying things that no one should have to experience...and I still don't want to spend the night at a truck stop or rest area...besides the trucks coming and going, doors closing, headlights shining in...can't get any rest that way...
Then DON"T stop at any of THOSE places and you won't have to experience it. I travel cross country delivering camper and frequently stay in THOSE place and have never experienced what you say is there.
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:10 AM   #42
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I travel cross country delivering camper and frequently stay in THOSE place and have never experienced what you say is there.
Nor have I. I have been stopping and sometimes sleeping at rest areas and truck stops for near 20 years and I have never smelled urine.
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