It’s fortunate that my husband really enjoys driving, because that is one aspect of this adventure I haven’t fully embraced. I know, I know, I need to learn. I have opted to drive a few times, when the distance was very short or when we needed someone to back into a spot, but when the roads are less challenging I will try driving longer distances.
As we caravan down the road, I do most of the navigating. We haven’t splurged for the GPS systems out there for RVs, but Google and various apps have helped tremendously. I also like to research destinations and activities for the group.
My brother gave us a lovely walkie-talkie system that we use on a daily basis. Thank you, Austin!! With this marvelous gift, I can guide Chris and Dan together, so they can both focus on the road. It only fails to work if one of us gets stuck at a light.
I know what you’re thinking, why not wait for the other person to catch up? Well, something I never considered was how hard it is to find a place to stop when you’re so long. The choices are limited since our RV is 37 feet and we’re pulling our car and oh, by the way, we can’t ever back up without first unhooking our tow dolly (that isn’t an easy task). So with all these parameters in place, one needs to plan every single move carefully.
Because of these challenges, finding a feasible gas station is harder than I would have thought. Even the ones that accommodate big vehicles don’t always work for us. Remember we can’t back up, so we must find a pump we can pull through to exit. It’s surprisingly difficult. Fortunately, Dan and I are both tournament chess players so we’re reasonable problem solvers.
I will say I was thrilled when we found one place, a Hess station, which had special pumps for RVs. The pumps out back are for trucks and only provide diesel. Otherwise, those would have been perfect. I found myself being jealous of those huge monsters.
I’m learning that it takes a lot longer to get anywhere, as we go between 45 and 55 miles per hour typically. When we’re able, we prefer not to drive long distances, but try to stick to 100 – 200 miles per day.
When we arrived in Wake Forest, North Carolina, it was pouring rain and, even though we thought we left plenty of time, we arrived at dusk. Getting the cars off the tow dollies and backing the RVs into their spots at the Falls Lake State Park while drenched to the skin in the dark was an experience I won’t soon forget. We now have a new policy:
Arrive at our destination well before dark!
We’ll see how we do…
On the plus side, this park is exactly what I had in mind for our camping experience. Each spot backs up into its own wooded paradise. We feel like we’re on our own, rather than cramped next to others. The rain let up long enough that we could have a fire last night.
There’s nothing like sitting by a fire, staring at the gorgeous orange, gold, and red flames, doing absolutely nothing, after a long day. I hope to do that again tonight!
Merry Rosenfield says
Oh, you lucky and intrepid lady. What a great adventure! I know what you mean about watching a fire…I love that as well.
Here’s to days of arriving at your destination before dark!
Laura Sherman says
Thank you so much!
Ruth Sherman says
For days I’ve been meaning to read all of your blogs, and I finally settled down to read ’em this afternoon.
I enjoy talking to Dan on the phone, but reading these blogs tells me more about where all 5 of you have been and what you’re doing and thinking, so I want you to know how wonderful I find your blogs. And, it’s the first time I’ve read and replied to any blogs.
Driving your RV, with the towed car, is certainly different than driving my 20′ RV (with no tow car or pullouts). I’ve camped, in my RV, next to my friend who has a 31′ RV and tows a car, and I’ve seen the trouble she has if she can’t get a pull through
site. It’s never easy, but she says it gets somewhat easier after awhile.
I’ve been checking for emails from my sister, every evening, and now I have the
Shermans’ blogs to look forward too also.
Love to the kids!
Laura Sherman says
I am thrilled that you’re now following our blogs. I’m working on making a few improvements, so bear with me as I learn about all the nuances of this art form. 🙂 We’re working on creating a visual time line that you can follow, so you’ll be able to track where we go. I’m also learning how to create a photo gallery. Thank you so much for taking the time to post comments!!