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Old 02-22-2021, 11:39 AM   #81
RFP
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The original poster must have learned all they wanted to... They haven't been back to the forum since the 18th.
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Old 02-22-2021, 12:30 PM   #82
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Mount Zion , Illinois
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Good discussion (again)

I've been watching this thread. You can't get this kind of information any other way. As a (soon to be) new AS owner, and having only tent camped, I have no idea what to expect on getting reservations made.

I did spend an afternoon planning a couple hypothetical trips and one real one, all from Central Illinois, one to Adirondack Park, one to northern Wisconsin, and the third (real one) to a nearby state park.

I can report that the state parks I looked at have lots of availability. Some part filled, some pretty empty. All depending on what month.

The private campgrounds were filling up.

The cancelation policies on the state park are pretty generous, which is good if you're the one making the reservation, bad if you're the majority who are blocked out because the park shows filled.

I imagine that the state park directors who make these decisions will finally wise up and tighten up the cancelation policies. Especially if that would generate more revenue for a limited revenue government ran operation.

As one poster stated, you can do what I've done many times with apps like OpenTable: make reservations from the parking lot minutes (literally) before you arrive.

Many thanks to everyone posting on this thread! This is a godsend for newbies to get a feel for what to expect when we hit the road.
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Old 02-23-2021, 06:39 AM   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nadrad314 View Post
I've been watching this thread. You can't get this kind of information any other way. As a (soon to be) new AS owner, and having only tent camped, I have no idea what to expect on getting reservations made.

I did spend an afternoon planning a couple hypothetical trips and one real one, all from Central Illinois, one to Adirondack Park, one to northern Wisconsin, and the third (real one) to a nearby state park.

I can report that the state parks I looked at have lots of availability. Some part filled, some pretty empty. All depending on what month.

The private campgrounds were filling up.

The cancelation policies on the state park are pretty generous, which is good if you're the one making the reservation, bad if you're the majority who are blocked out because the park shows filled.

I imagine that the state park directors who make these decisions will finally wise up and tighten up the cancelation policies. Especially if that would generate more revenue for a limited revenue government ran operation.

As one poster stated, you can do what I've done many times with apps like OpenTable: make reservations from the parking lot minutes (literally) before you arrive.

Many thanks to everyone posting on this thread! This is a godsend for newbies to get a feel for what to expect when we hit the road.
That seems reversed. In on season, state parks usually book up well in advance of private parks, though if it's the kind of private park where people set up shop all summer long I guess I could see it
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Old 02-23-2021, 07:12 AM   #84
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Here's two times "winging it" bit me in the
Heading out west, driving north on I-29 from K.C. I tried calling for a site. One campground owner was nice enough to call back and informed me that due to the floods(?) most campgrounds were closed and he was actually in another state! I did notice exit ramps that went into water! I was sure I'd be sleeping in the truck that night. Luckily, one owner that was full called me back to say he had a cancellation; did I want it?
Another time I called for a state park site. The guy on the phone said he had five spaces left. So I drove way out of my way, stood in line and was informed the person in front of me got the last spot.
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:29 AM   #85
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Yep, the info from all was helpful, thanks! I booked Idaho, we'll play it by ear across MT and ND on the way home as the route isn't a very popular destination.
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Old 02-23-2021, 06:50 PM   #86
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The original poster must have learned all they wanted to... They haven't been back to the forum since the 18th.
Oh Ye of little Faith!

OP Post #2:

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Originally Posted by campmel View Post
Yep, the info from all was helpful, thanks! I booked Idaho, we'll play it by ear across MT and ND on the way home as the route isn't a very popular destination.
Happy trails campmel.
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Old 02-25-2021, 10:25 PM   #87
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Originally Posted by Mollysdad View Post
I used to be a "wing it" guy. I didn't want to be tied to a schedule.
But one too many times arriving after dark to find the office closed and weaving through a strange campground has convinced me to plan a little.
Now, at about 3pm I pull into a rest area, open Allstays and find a campground about two hours up the road. I call and reserve a spot arriving while the office is open.
Okay, that minimal planning, but it works.
I tried RV Trip Wizzard, but it locked me into a schedule that I might not keep.
That's usually how my girlfriend and I do it. We have always enjoyed being a bit more spontaneous.
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Old 03-04-2021, 03:13 PM   #88
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reservations vs. "winging it"

I bought my AS a few years ago with the same idea that camping would be more accessible and flexible. Boy was I wrong. I feel even more limited in some ways. It does extend the season though, so finding spots in the off-season is easier. I have not had much luck winging it, and canít really even afford to try. I still have school age kids so weíre unfortunately bound to mostly weekend/holiday camping, and reservations are a must. I tried venturing out midweek last year with no reservation and after about an hour of driving had to turn around and come back home. Every campground was full and/or closed and there was no point in staying in a parking lot that close to home. Out here in the western states, options are generally fewer and much farther between, so winging it can get pretty hairy. Making reservations, if Iím lucky to even get one, gives me a lot of anxiety because itís so hard to plan far in advance, but itís less anxiety than potentially driving around with nowhere to safely or legally stop for the night. I also find that I take more trips with reservations made; itís a commitment I kind of have to make to get out there.
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Old 03-04-2021, 04:27 PM   #89
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Weekends, book in advance. Weekdays...you should be safe to wing it.
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