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Old 08-10-2012, 11:54 AM   #1
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Where Do We Go In Winter??

Just posted the below but forgot to put in the "Where Do We Go In Winter" heading. I am just learning so bear with me.

As we just inherited 92 Excella and have NEVER gone RVing previously, we are getting our Airstream checked out and ready to go for a few months this winter. We just retired 2 yrs ago, live in Mid-Missouri and want to go south to warmer climate for two or three months this winter. Probably not Arizona but need some suggestions from you that have experience in this. We have two small, 4 legged kids that go with us so must be pet friendly, not too expensive, not totally in the boondocks and hopefully near the beaches or within reasonable driving distance. We have a 1001 questions as we are new to all of this but if anyone can point us to some good parks, maybe in Texas or so, we would appreciate it.
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Old 08-10-2012, 12:45 PM   #2
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There wasn't really a need to repost; if you can catch the mistake in less than half an hour, you can edit the original by going back to it and selecting the blue "Edit" button at the bottom of the post.

Anyway, if you don't mind the New Orleans area instead of Texas, I've already posted a response to your previous attempt, with several suggestions. Since you can get up to two weeks at a time at any of the parks I've listed, you can easily get through a couple of months just in this one area, and just at State Parks.

Before I forget, welcome to the AirForums!
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:15 PM   #3
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To follow on a bit with what Protagonist said, where you choose to go to stay this winter may depend on how much you want to go and how much you want to stay. South and central Texas are popular havens for Winter Texans (called Snowbirds most places, but we've just gotta get "Texas" in there somehow. )

Some of the popular long-term places in prime locations may be heavily booked by people who repeat there every year, and tend to come and set up and stay for 3 or 4 months at a time. If you don't mind moving every few weeks, I think you'll have no problem finding places at least near the coast (if not on it) and getting a more varied experience of Gulf Coast living, and perhaps Hill Country too (my personal preference over the coast.)

If you join the WBCCI, there's Texas Airstream Harbor (TAHI) in SE Texas and North Texas Airstream Community (NTAC) in North Texas that offer affordable short-term stays and you can decide if you want to buy into those communities for a regular "winter home" for future years.

The Escapees have at least 1 ownership park in Texas, there may be more, and they as an organization will have lots of useful information about living in your RV for long terms or full-time.

I'm envious, but for the opposite season. I'm a native Texan who'd like to get away from our summers!
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:20 PM   #4
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We winter in South TX. The town we are in is Mission. There are more than 200 RV parks in the Rio Grand Valley. The valley (which really isn't a valley) starts in Brownsville and continues west. I believe that most Rv parks will rent monthly but give discounted rates for those spending more than 2 months. Start looking now as many will be filled up already for 2012-2013 winter. Many of the parks are gated which is good as we are VERY close to the border.
The winter is great weather, we can swim most days. Look for parks that have some activities that are an interest to you. The closer you are to South Padre island the higher the rent. Towns to look at are Brownsville, Harlingen, Weslaco, McAllen, Mission, Pharr, Mercedes, Palmview. That is all that I can think of right now. There are more than 200,000 winter Texans. Most places are very happy that so many people come down as to help their economy.

There are spots north of the Rio Grand Valley that also cater to winter Texans but we have only stayed overnight on our way to or from south TX. We are 250 miles south of San Antonio.

Good luck in your hunt. We love it down there. This summer it has been better temps. in Mission than it has been here in St. Louis. I'm ready to go now.
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:28 PM   #5
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Lots to see and do in the desert southwest; also southern Colorado and Utah if you want a little snow in your adventure. See short list of suggestions below, but these are only the biggies. (OK, it started out to be a short list.) I know I have left out some great places, and I am sure others will add more.

Also, if you don't already have one, don't forget to purchase the $10, lifetime, National Parks Senior Pass (must be 62) to save on entrance fees and camping (half off in most "national" areas).

Link to Senior Pass info: U.S. National Park ServiceAmerica the Beautiful


* NEW MEXICO

- Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta -- This event is in early October. For info, see link to thread on this site: http://www.airforums.com/forums/f289...ml#post1163664

- Carlsbad Caverns -- Carlsbad Caverns National Park - Carlsbad Caverns National Park

- Trinity Site (first atomic bomb test site) -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trinity_(nuclear_test)

- VLA (Very Large Array), National Radio Astronomy Observatory (and SETI site) -- Featured in numerous movies including Contact, 2011 Space Odyssey and others. -- NRAO Very Large Array

- New Mexico Museum of Space History (Alamogordo, NM) -- New Mexico Museum of Space History Alamogordo, New Mexico Celebrating the significant role the state of New Mexico has played in the development of the U.S. Space Program

- Toy Train Depot (Alamogordo, NM) -- The Toy Train Depot - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

- White Sands National Monument (Alamogordo, NM) -- White Sands National Monument - White Sands National Monument


* ARIZONA

- Grand Canyon -- Grand Canyon National Park - Grand Canyon National Park

- Petrified Forest & Meteor Crater (I-40 in northeastern Arizona) -- Petrified Forest National Park - Petrified Forest National Park and Meteor Crater

- Lake Powell, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area -- Camp at Lone Rock on a long sandy beach. Very few RVs in winter months; cold, but usually no snow. -- Glen Canyon National Recreation Area - Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

- Lake Mead National Recreation Area -- Only a few miles from Las Vegas -- Lake Mead National Recreation Area - Lake Mead National Recreation Area

- Pima Air Museum (Tucson, AZ) -- Old war planes and Titan Missile Museum (deactivated silo missile site) -- Arizona Aerospace Foundation

- Old Tucson Movie Studio (Tucson, AZ) -- Haven't been there in years, but I think this is still open -- Old Tucson Studios - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

- Baseball Spring Training (MLB) -- Phoenix & Tucson

- Professional Sports (Phoenix, AZ) -- Diamondbacks Baseball, Cardinals Football, Coyotes Hockey, NASCAR & Indy Cars, etc.

- Bass Pro Shops & Cabelas Sports Shops (Phoenix, AZ) -- Big superstores for sportsmen, er uh... sportspersons.

- Symphony & Touring Concerts and Productions, Opera, Theater, and other fine arts events -- Phoenix & Tucson

- Karchner Caverns (southeast Arizona, along I-10) -- Free night at campground with two adult tickets -- Arizona State Parks: Kartchner Caverns: Home

- Canyon de Chelly -- Canyon de Chelly National Monument - Canyon De Chelly National Monument

- Quartzsite, AZ, Gem, Mineral, RV, Classic Car Shows -- Also, Google to find similar events during same time periods in Tucson, AZ -- The Quartzsite Shows :: Home


* COLORADO

- Mesa Verde National Park (Cortez, CO) -- Mesa Verde National Park - Mesa Verde National Park

- Durango, CO -- Interesting small college town with unique shops and restaurants. Home to Durango/Silverton Narrow Gage Railway and nearby ski areas. -- Durango and Home | Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad Train

- Great Sand Dunes National Park -- This is in the mountains, so be prepared for snow and cold weather in winter. Also, don't miss nearby Colorado Gators Reptile Farm; YES, THAT'S RIGHT, ALLIGATORS near SAND DUNES in SNOW COUNTRY! -- Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve - Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve and Home


* UTAH

- Zion National Park -- Zion National Park - Zion National Park

- Bryce Canyon National Park -- Bryce Canyon National Park - Bryce Canyon National Park

- Monument Valley -- Beautiful drive and photo ops. Backdrop for many movies. Monument Valley - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


* SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

- Death Valley -- Couldn't leave this one out. Winter is the best time to visit -- Death Valley National Park - Death Valley National Park
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DKB_SATX View Post
To follow on a bit with what Protagonist said, where you choose to go to stay this winter may depend on how much you want to go and how much you want to stay. South and central Texas are popular havens for Winter Texans (called Snowbirds most places, but we've just gotta get "Texas" in there somehow. )

Some of the popular long-term places in prime locations may be heavily booked by people who repeat there every year, and tend to come and set up and stay for 3 or 4 months at a time. If you don't mind moving every few weeks, I think you'll have no problem finding places at least near the coast (if not on it) and getting a more varied experience of Gulf Coast living, and perhaps Hill Country too (my personal preference over the coast.)

If you join the WBCCI, there's Texas Airstream Harbor (TAHI) in SE Texas and North Texas Airstream Community (NTAC) in North Texas that offer affordable short-term stays and you can decide if you want to buy into those communities for a regular "winter home" for future years.

The Escapees have at least 1 ownership park in Texas, there may be more, and they as an organization will have lots of useful information about living in your RV for long terms or full-time.

I'm envious, but for the opposite season. I'm a native Texan who'd like to get away from our summers!
Thank you for the info and will follow up on it. If you want to get away from the Texas heat in the summer, you sure don't want to come north to Misery in the summer! Just got back from ten days in Colorado, up in mountains near Winter Park. In the 70s during the day and in the mid to upper 40s at night! That is where we are going to spend next summer.
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:37 PM   #7
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Even at places that normally don't allow a long-term stay, there are ways around that. For example, if you apply for a position as a camp host at a Lousiana State Park, you can get up to eight weeks in one park rather than the normal two weeks maximum, in exchange for doing a bit of work around the park. Of course, being a camp host is probably best left until you've racked up more experience, but it's something to keep in mind for the future.

If you haven't checked your original thread ("Floyd" was it?) I'll repeat what I said about most Louisiana State Parks being year-round and accepting the Interagency Passes for half-price discounts. One of the few states to honor the passes, by the way. You've got five possibilities within an easy drive of New Orleans (St. Bernard and Bayou Segnette in the metro area, Tickfaw, Fairview-Riverside, and Fountainbleu just across Lake Pontchartrain), one right on the Gulf (Grand Isle, with one of Louisiana's few beaches), and several others scattered around the state.

Also, if you can find year-round Corps of Engineers campgrounds, it's worth checking into them as well for wintering down south. Many of them also accept the Interagency Passes for half-price discounts.
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Old 08-10-2012, 02:07 PM   #8
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There are some great spots along the east coast as well. Coastal ga/sc lowcountry is a great place in the winter. There is a place down the street from me (blythe island park)...
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Old 08-10-2012, 02:17 PM   #9
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Welcoming to Airstreaming. I believe you will find it to be a very friendly and helpful group and that you will enjoy the experience.
You might be interested in a Jan. rally at Santa Rosa Beach, FL starting Jan 4, 2013 named 'Canopener'. The location is Topsail State Park in the panhandle of FL. More info can be found on this website under Forum Rallies. This will be our first year to attend but it had really gotten some good press and pictures in previous years and we are looking forward to it. There will be lots of Airstreamers there willing to help you out with your new toy.

Walter
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Old 08-10-2012, 03:05 PM   #10
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Welcoming to Airstreaming. I believe you will find it to be a very friendly and helpful group and that you will enjoy the experience.
You might be interested in a Jan. rally at Santa Rosa Beach, FL starting Jan 4, 2013 named 'Canopener'. The location is Topsail State Park in the panhandle of FL. More info can be found on this website under Forum Rallies. This will be our first year to attend but it had really gotten some good press and pictures in previous years and we are looking forward to it. There will be lots of Airstreamers there willing to help you out with your new toy.

Walter
Good idea!
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Old 08-10-2012, 07:01 PM   #11
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San Diego, nuff said. .
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