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Current RV Trip
Old 09-11-2007, 08:06 PM   #1
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Current RV Trip

We left Salt Lake City on Thursday AM and stopped for the night in Cheyenne, WY. Then to Lincoln, NE, Jonesburg, MO and then to Chattanooga, TN were we are staying for a few weeks before we head up to Knoxville for a few days to see some family and a UT football game.

Then on to north central NC for a few days to visit some old friends. Next is a nice campground near Myrtle Beach, SC for a few days to allow us some quality time eating seafood at Calabash etc. etc.

On to Charleston for a couple of days and then to Hilton Head Island for a week of rest and sight seeing.

After that we are on a very loose schedule as we slowly turn back West along I 10. Cities included are: Jacksonville, Mobile, New Orleans, Houston, San Antonio and then the great barren plains of west Tejas before climbing up into NM and over to AZ where we will hang out in various parts of the state for a couple of weeks before we head back to SLC by the end of October.

So far so good. Once we leave here we can actually enjoy ourselves but for now we are taking care of Mom for a few weeks.
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Old 09-11-2007, 08:54 PM   #2
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Great overview, and sounds like an adventure!

If you are keeping a more detailed log, and the mods don't think it is too far O/T, I for one would love to hear all the intimate details of fuel mileage, stops, whether you cooked or ate at restaurants, dumping stations, miles per day, incidents or surprises, fun level versus frustration, two lane/four lane, mixed, etc....

If you can't tell, one of my own FI/RE scenarios has me RV'ing for a while to scout locales for a permanent homestead.

Cheers!
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Old 09-11-2007, 10:09 PM   #3
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Steve, I'm green with envy.

I know it's weeks away, but I recommend you check out this place as your jumping off point for the great barren plains of west Tejas. It's on I-10 just outside of Kerrville - where the speed limit signs start reading "80".
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Old 09-14-2007, 09:50 AM   #4
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Steve - it sounds GREAT!

How many days total will you be on the road? Miles? Gallons of gas? I'd love to read details too.

We're off tomorrow on our first RV (rented) trip - to see how we like it. Only 7 days and 500 miles, though. We're just going to make the "North Cascades Loop" circuit.
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Old 09-16-2007, 09:23 PM   #5
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We are in East TN for 10 days or longer depending on how my mother recovers from her recent illnesses. We intended to be here for two weeks but we will now need to stick around for a while to see how she does and to help out as much as she needs it.

For the gear heads in the group....we covered 430 mile on day one with an average MPG of 6.2 (mountain driving). Day two we went just over 425 miles with an average MPG of 6.5. Day three was just over 525 miles in the rain; average MPG on mostly rolling hills and a couple of mountains was 6.7. Keep in mind the engine is a 400 hp pushing 41,000lbs plus pulling a 5200#car. The engine has 6100 miles on it and is long way from being broken in so the mileage should increase in time.

DW is not a good boondocker so ALL our overnight stops require AC and water at a minimum. That, and our 63 foot travel length with the car attached restricts were we can stay so private campgrounds are just about it for now.

More to come..........
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Old 09-16-2007, 09:51 PM   #6
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Steve, best wishes for your mom's speedy recovery.

Quote:
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For the gear heads in the group....we covered 430 mile on day one with an average MPG of 6.2 (mountain driving). Day two we went just over 425 miles with an average MPG of 6.5. Day three was just over 525 miles in the rain; average MPG on mostly rolling hills and a couple of mountains was 6.7. Keep in mind the engine is a 400 hp pushing 41,000lbs plus pulling a 5200#car. The engine has 6100 miles on it and is long way from being broken in so the mileage should increase in time.
Wow, that's some serious driving you've been doing. I hope you have the opportunity to slack off a little and smell the roses along the way.

This gear head really appreciates the info. I've been reluctant to check my MPG numbers, but hope to do a little better than your initial report. I'm pushing 10,000 fewer pounds, pulling 1,500# less of toad load with 70 fewer HP, plus I now have 50K on the odometer. I keep hearing the mileage doesn't reach it's max until 25K or so, and I'm interested to see how much improvement you'll see with increased use.

Whatever, it may get lousy mileage for a car, but it gets great mileage for a house...
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Old 09-16-2007, 09:55 PM   #7
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Well, if you are in Phoenix in October and bored, feel free to look us up.
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Old 09-16-2007, 10:21 PM   #8
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Steve,
Those MPG figures are painful. What is your speed?

I'm on the other end of the scale - 16mpg with my 2000 Dodge Dakota v6 3.9l and towing the Casita.
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Old 09-17-2007, 05:50 AM   #9
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Steve,
Those MPG figures are painful. What is your speed?

I'm on the other end of the scale - 16mpg with my 2000 Dodge Dakota v6 3.9l and towing the Casita.
The MPG figures are about average for something this size and weight. Most large Class A diesel pushers of this size run about 6-8 mpg; some lower some a bit higher. My speed is just below the limit most of the time...or 60-70 depending on the state. Also, the mpg is affected by generator use as it is also deisel and by use of my water heater/furnace (hydronic heating system) which is also diesel. Both take fuel from the primary fuel tank and can conume 1-1.5 gallons of fuel per hour when used heavily.

If you want good mpg...get an electric car and stay in a motel or tent camp. It is not going to happen with a 40,000+ pound beast with a 400 hp engine.

The painful part is paying at the fuel desk (yes I have to use truck stops for fuel). I fill up around 1/2 tank and each fill up is around 70 gallons.
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Old 09-17-2007, 07:36 AM   #10
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Most RVing in that type of a motor home involves less day-to-day driving, and more leisurely stays, at least according to virtually every owner of a 40' Class A that I've met.

Steve's circumstances at the moment seem to be calling for the worst case scenario as far as fuel cost per month goes but I'm sure once things settle down, those $220 per day fuel cost days will be limited to every few weeks.

Gotta admit it made me wince, though. My combination is a 31' light-weight travel trailer and a Sequoia. Early experience seems to be about 16 mpg, but our setup is not nearly as nice as Steve's.

It's all good if you are enjoying it. There's still time to ask Dory to put a fuel allowance field into Firecalc.
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Old 09-17-2007, 09:10 AM   #11
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You have to love the USA. A place where a slightly above average Joe can own a Class A diesel pusher. It wasn't too long ago that it was only bus companies and rock bands had these things.
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Old 09-17-2007, 09:58 AM   #12
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Quote:
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You have to love the USA. A place where a slightly above average Joe can own a Class A diesel pusher. It wasn't too long ago that it was only bus companies and rock bands had these things.
Some of us Joe's may consider ourselves to be a rock band of one...
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Old 09-17-2007, 10:15 AM   #13
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Some of us Joe's may consider ourselves to be a rock band of one...
REW: line dancing doesn't qualify.
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Old 09-17-2007, 10:18 AM   #14
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REW: line dancing doesn't qualify.
How about clogging?
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Old 09-17-2007, 09:53 PM   #15
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Most RVing in that type of a motor home involves less day-to-day driving, and more leisurely stays, at least according to virtually every owner of a 40' Class A that I've met.
We were not planning on burning up the road on this trip as we have on all of our other trips so far. Driving 450+ miles a day for several days in a row is not my idea of a good time. It takes far too much concentration to keep this monster in line to be enjoyable for 7+ hours a day. We had to rush to get here to do my mother's health issues. We are staying longer than we intended and our time table is being compressed on the back end so we will need to drop some cities on this trip and drive further on some days getting back home in late October.

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Steve's circumstances at the moment seem to be calling for the worst case scenario as far as fuel cost per month goes but I'm sure once things settle down, those $220 per day fuel cost days will be limited to every few weeks.
We have been sitting for the past week and are only burning fuel for heating water. We will be heading up to Knoxville later this week provided Mom is out of the hospital; if so, we will stay there for a few days and then come back here for another 5 days before we head east again. We will stop in Greensboro for 3 days and then on to near Myrtle Beach for 3 days; Hilton Head Island for 7 days and then start back home giving ourselves 14 days to see a good chunk of AZ on our way home.

Still too much driving on some legs of the trip but required to get home by the end of the month for DW's surgery.

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It's all good if you are enjoying it. There's still time to ask Dory to put a fuel allowance field into Firecalc.
How about a Moderator fuel allowance?
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Old 09-25-2007, 11:23 PM   #16
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Update:
Mom is back in the Nursing Home recovering very well. Her close call with the Grim Reaper is past and she is almost back to normal despite the tough time she has experienced in the past 3 weeks. We were so glad we decided to plan this trip for 3 weeks at this location without every knowing she would be in the hospital or a Nursing Home. It has worked out well for her and we will be leaving Thursday AM on our way to Ashville for a couple of days before pushing on to Greensboro to see some friends. I have put over 850 miles on the car running errands and going to see Mom in the various institutions she has been in over the past 3 weeks. We are glad we can leave with her doing so well.

The car has spent the past 2 days in the shop with a variety of issues that I thought were all the same cause of an intermittent vibration. So far they found and replaced a broken motor mount, defective EGR valve and serviced the transmission after checking it out. We still had the vibration and a mechanic finally heard it and knew what it was. The part is on order and will be replaced tomorrow. None too soon as we still have several thousand miles to go on this trip and a broken car is not an option. The suspected part is a linkage between the transmission and the front wheel drive axle shafts. I sure hope this fixes it. Oh, the car is out of warranty so all these are on my tab. Yuck! That is about $900 after the repair tomorrow.

We are looking forward to our week in Hilton Head Island. We plan on just sitting under the awning and consuming adult beverages all day for a week of well earned RnR.

More to come...
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Old 09-26-2007, 10:50 AM   #17
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Hilton Head is very pretty. The wife and I went down to Hatteras and enjoyed every minute.
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Old 09-26-2007, 02:40 PM   #18
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Hatteras is in the Outer Banks of NC and very pretty indeed.
Hilton Head is at the bottom of SC, near the Georgia border, and also very pretty.
Just doing my SC/NC geography lesson for the non-locals!

Steve, I hope y'all have an awesome time in Asheville (such a beautiful setting) and on Hilton Head, relaxing and chilling on the beach! Y'all deserve it after all the family stuff you've been through. Good to hear your mom has rallied!
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Old 09-26-2007, 03:55 PM   #19
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Thanks Sarah. Mom is doing better but DW is having a hard time with all the frequent trips back and forth from the campground to the nursing home which is about 20 miles each way.

A new development....the car transmission has finally gone from questionable to fatal. We have been having some vibration issues for over a year but no one has found the source due to the irratic nature of them...until now. The local dealership is replacing it under warranty despite it being out of warranty since March. We had records from a year ago of trying to get Acura to find and fix it and they had it on file so they convinced the local District Service Mgr to cover it under warranty. That is great for us as it avoids a $3000 repair bill. But, that also means we will be here another 2 days as they need to ship one in and then take a day to install it.

All this puts us behind our "schedule" by 2 days but being retired it is not a big deal. We will just adjust our second next stop by cutting it down a day or so and will not need to change our other reservations.

We are looking forward to a few days of RnR without running everywhere or having to take care of Mom. She is progressing well and should be back in her assisted living "home" in a couple of weeks. We need the rest as we have not stopped since May.
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Old 09-26-2007, 04:10 PM   #20
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SteveR, congratulations on getting Accura to pick up the cost of a new trans. About time you caught a break.

I was wondering after your last post if the problems with your car were the result of using it as a toad, but since it appears the problems go back prior to towing, that answered my question. Happy trails.
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