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 > Class A travel without interstates

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Bruce Brown

Northern NY

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Posted: 01/27/21 05:36am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I hate traffic and will do what I can to avoid it. Sometimes thats not possible.

When we do our Virginia trip, on paper I go 45 minutes out of my way to avoid DC. The reality is most of the time it's actually faster as we avoid the Beltway traffic.

A few years ago we did a run to NC in the car. On the way home friends took the Beltway route, we did our normal avoidance route. They hit traffic - we got home hours before they did.


There are 24 hours in every day - it all depends on how you choose to use them.
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valhalla360

No paticular place.

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Posted: 01/27/21 05:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Basically, if you see commercial trucks on the route, you should be fine.

No one "likes" dealing with city traffic but if you stick to the freeways and arterials, it's not an issue fitting. Just try to avoid rush hour to keep the stress down.

Where it's possible to run into issues is going back into small neighborhood streets. A lot of times, there isn't much room to begin with and then people park eating up more space...then you find yourself hemmed in.


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wolfe10

Texas

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Posted: 01/27/21 06:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Unless we are in a BIG hurry (rare), we often drive the back roads in our DP's.

U.S. 90 vs I 10 from San Antonio to Van Horn for example.


Brett Wolfe
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DrewE

Vermont

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Posted: 01/27/21 08:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Class A's may be the biggest motorhomes, but they don't need especially more space to navigate than (for instance) larger class C's, which although not as long are often less maneuverable. The wheel cut angle and hence minimum turning circle on the E series chassis is fairly poor--particularly once the wheelbase has been extended. At any rate, outside of parking lots and gas stations and similar tight quarters, the length of the vehicle is probably the least noticeable constraint for most driving: the width and height are bigger annoyances, and they don't vary nearly as much between RVs.

Most US and State highways are perfectly acceptable for most any RV, assuming the driver is comfortable. There are, of course, some notable exceptions.

Navigating large cities in any vehicle is a pain, often doubly so once off the freeways. I'd no more like to drive my little Honda Fit around downtown Boston than I would a motorhome. I would, however, much prefer to find a place to park the car downtown than the motorhome; but in either case, taking mass transit seems preferable most of the time. That applies to most large cities, to a greater or lesser degree.

A GPS, like fire, is a great servant but a terrible master. I like to have a route planned out with maps, but use the GPS to help stay on it and figure any needed diversions and, if required, get back onto it after a missed turn or whatever.





azdryheat

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Posted: 01/27/21 09:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't find it any worse driving a large class A for work, pulling my own 41 foot toy hauler, or driving my SUV in heavy city traffic - the heavy traffic sux.

What I try to do is time my trip so I'm not driving through a large city during rush hour. I also consult the Google Maps app on my phone and check the traffic through town and then make a decision whether to proceed through town or bail and find another route.

I guess I'm still young enuf to not be too bothered by the heavy traffic; I just treat it for what it is. I avoid the outside lanes and stay in the middle lanes as much as possible so I don't have to change lanes when lanes end or move over for merging traffic.

One other point comes to mind and that is why I don't like taking routes through small towns. Usually I'm trying to get from point A to B and find the Interstates and US highways the best way to go. While I like small towns I don't like having to slow to 25 mph and stop for all the red lights in small towns. Basically it's kind of like driving through a large town with heavy traffic - it slows my progress.

Matt_Colie

Southeast Michigan

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Posted: 01/27/21 09:26am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Mondooker,

While DrewE's reservations about some east coast areas (particularly the old port towns) is largely accurate, with very few exceptions all major roads in the US are required to clear a full size semi cab and trailer. Some are a little never wracking in mountain areas, so you just slow down and then when it is possible, let the tailback go by.

We actively avoid interstate and other blue roads.

"Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel across the country from coast to coast without seeing anything."
Charles Kuralt

Matt


Matt & Mary Colie
A sailor, his bride and their black dogs going to see some dry places that have Geocaches in a coach made the year we married.


Mondooker

Florida Gulf Coast

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Posted: 01/27/21 09:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Does anyone know of a GPS you can set to keep you off of interstates or away from large cities or both? My go to GPS is CoPilot and it does allow me to stay out of large cities But I have to do it manually. It would be great to find something that does it automatically. Many GPS allow all kinds of settings, why not this?

rgatijnet1

Florida

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Posted: 01/27/21 09:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I use a very large Michelin 761 road map of the USA. This map unfolds to about 36" x 60" and shows all of the interstates as well as secondary and other roads.
It is too large to use as a driving map but we used it to plot our course for the next day. We also used colored markers to show roads traveled so that the next trip we could pick an alternate route. We have gone through a few of these maps during the years as we criss-crossed the USA. The good thing about the map is that it shows the entire USA from coast to coast when it is opened up and it is very easy to plan your trip days in advance while avoiding most interstate highways. As I said, it is large but it spreads out easily on your dining room table and it provides an easy reference to the roads you have traveled on this trip. Some of our trips would be 3 months or so and cover 10-12,000 miles and we don't always remember what our path was for each trip. Using a different colored marker for each trip was a good reminder. We also had little marks that we would use as places we spent the night. These maps are updated regularly and cost less than $10 from Amazon, or other suppliers.

Sandia Man

Rio Rancho, NM

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Posted: 01/27/21 10:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have no issues using interstate and just avoid rush hour when going through major cities. Gets us to where we are going faster in most cases, multiple lanes, much wider paved surface, and less issues with single lane backroads that often don't have enough asphalt along the edges, just slightly veering off track from a sudden gust of wind could mean trouble posing significant damage to tires. Adding to that there is often no where to pull off should you have any issues that might require a quick inspection.

For us it is winding mountain roads that pose the biggest driving issue in our 40' Class A and mid-size SUV toad, something we face often here in the mountain west region of our great country. We primarily use google maps and double check route with our paper maps, have used a variety of map apps over the years and most give the very same info as google. Other than that, be it interstate, US or state highways, county roads or whatever, we rarely fret the voyage, just crank the tunes and roll on down the road.

bukhrn

Lanexa, Va

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Posted: 01/27/21 10:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JRscooby wrote:

I don't think Interstates go anyplace today that trucks didn't go before interstates. So anybody should be able to get there without interstate
They just get there twice as fast, which even being retired is important to me, as i'm a Get There type, it let's me spend more quality time at my destinations, i could care less about seeing the biggest ball of yarn, or the worlds largest pile of mud, or any of the tourist traps, like Wall, SD, or South of The Boarder, SC, and avoid big cities religiously, even with a car, would much rather go out of the way.


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