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Shade in the West / Desert?


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#1 RonnieReverb

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 01:18 AM

I lived on the west coast for most of my life, but raised in the northeast and spent the last 3 years in the east. am wondering when traveling from east coast to west coast, what do you do for shade when going from mid country across the southern desert? it's getting quite warm. do even the RV parks have trees and shade for the RVes?

#2 Happy Prospector

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 04:12 AM

Some parks have shade some don't, but the great thing is you can check by using the internet while on your travels, just remember it is a dry heat.

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#3 rvpopeye

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 04:53 AM

Park on the north side of someone in a big pusher ;)
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#4 Marshall & Nancy

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 07:04 AM

Park on the north side of someone in a big pusher ;)




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#5 LindaH

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 07:33 AM

Since we have a satellite TV dish on the roof of our RV, trees are not our friend since they can block the signal. However, since we don't travel in the desert Southwest during the summer, heat isn't a big concern. But, if we were going to travel in the SW during the summer, we'd orient our rig so that the large windows faced south (they'd be shaded by the window awnings), which would have the added benefit of putting the refrigerator facing north. We'd still have to run the A/C pretty much 24/7, though.

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#6 Vladimir

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:50 AM

I think your need for air conditioning depends on WHERE you travel in the west. Even in the southwest head for the mountains.

We have lived in north Idaho and eastern Washington for 30 plus years now. In the spring, we are camped down at the lower elevations primarily in the desert of eastern Washington. Once the snow starts melting we start moving up into the mountains. There the nights cool down quickly. We have used our furnace every month of the year.

I could easily live without air conditioning, but would insist on a furnace. I suspect it is the reverse in the east.

If you stick to the valleys and major travel routes for extended periods of time you will need air conditioning and shade. Otherwise, just head for the mountains in the summer. Where else in the west do you want to be in the summer??

Edited by Vladimir, 04 May 2012 - 08:52 AM.

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#7 2gypsies

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 10:47 AM

LindaH gave you good ideas. Having a motorhome we always try to park with the big front windshield facing north. That's where most of the heat comes in. Even though we have a windshield cover and drapes it's best to park where the sun doesn't directly hit it. We have awnings on all of our other windows which works well. We put out the big awning but watch it carefully for winds that might pick up. We never leave our RV with the awning out. That's about all one can do. Sometimes there would be a shade tree in the desert but don't count on it. Also, some public parks have nice ramadas built at each campsite. Basically, the "sitting outside" times are in the morning and evenings. During the hot mid-days do your shopping, indoor museums, etc. or taking a siteseeing drive.

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#8 RonnieReverb

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 02:53 PM

Since we have a satellite TV dish on the roof of our RV, trees are not our friend since they can block the signal. However, since we don't travel in the desert Southwest during the summer, heat isn't a big concern. But, if we were going to travel in the SW during the summer, we'd orient our rig so that the large windows faced south (they'd be shaded by the window awnings), which would have the added benefit of putting the refrigerator facing north. We'd still have to run the A/C pretty much 24/7, though.

Well I'm looking to travel across the SW desert on the 40 to get to the west during May. That is specifically what I'm referring to.
The next higher interstate is apparently much too mountainous to consider, though much cooler.

Another question I have is that I lived in the LA area for many years and noticed that the summer there does not truly start until July and then will often run thru October or beyond, whereas in the NE where I was raised, summer starts promptly after memorial day and ends promptly after labor day.

So my question is, does this late starting summer that occurs on the west coast also apply to the southwest mainland, away from the coastal region, or is the late summer just for the coastal region?

#9 Barbaraok

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 03:03 PM

The next higher interstate is apparently much too mountainous to consider, though much cooler.]





Why? Who said so? We're talking interstates, correct?


It was in the 90s when we left Phoenix the first part of April. We're in the bay area now and some days are in the low 80s. I suspect warmer further south.

Travel I-40, stop for the night in Needles after coming down from Flagstaff. Then the next day start early and you should be out of the worst of it by noon and into the San Bernardino area.

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#10 RonnieReverb

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 03:04 PM

I think your need for air conditioning depends on WHERE you travel in the west. Even in the southwest head for the mountains.

We have lived in north Idaho and eastern Washington for 30 plus years now. In the spring, we are camped down at the lower elevations primarily in the desert of eastern Washington. Once the snow starts melting we start moving up into the mountains. There the nights cool down quickly. We have used our furnace every month of the year.

I could easily live without air conditioning, but would insist on a furnace. I suspect it is the reverse in the east.

If you stick to the valleys and major travel routes for extended periods of time you will need air conditioning and shade. Otherwise, just head for the mountains in the summer. Where else in the west do you want to be in the summer??

Well, you're speaking about the NW, not the SW. And I'm talking about traveling thru it in May, not staying there for the summer; I would never think about that. So you're saying cooler in the high desert, hotter in the low desert.

#11 LindaH

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 03:14 PM

Well I'm looking to travel across the SW desert on the 40 to get to the west during May. That is specifically what I'm referring to.

I-40 should be no problem in May. Much of it travels through higher elevations than I-10 does and, thus, is cooler (particularly through Arizona).

The next higher interstate is apparently much too mountainous to consider, though much cooler.

Really? We've driven I-70 through Colorado and Utah without a problem, as do hundreds and thousands of RVers and truckers daily.

So my question is, does this late starting summer that occurs on the west coast also apply to the southwest mainland, away from the coastal region, or is the late summer just for the coastal region?

Los Angeles, and other areas along the California coast, don't have the same weather as the rest of the Southwest. If you look at the temperatures now in Phoenix, for example, you'll see where it is significantly hotter NOW than in Los Angeles. Still not a concern if you stay in an RV park where you can have hookups to run your A/C rather than trying to boondock in 100-degree weather.

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#12 Kirk

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 03:17 PM

If you follow I-40 the predicted temperatures for tomorrow, May 5 are:
Dallas, TX 92 Wichita Falls, TX 97 Amarillo, TX 94 Tucumcari NM 95 Albuquerque, NM 91 Grants, NM 79 Holbrook, AZ 77 Flagstaff, AZ 73 Kingman, AZ 80 Needles, CA 92
All are predicting sunny weather for the next several days.

Is this summer, spring, or just the desert country.................................. It is probably mostly still green so I'd call it spring, but it really don't matter that much. ;)

Edited by Kirk, 04 May 2012 - 03:20 PM.

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#13 RonnieReverb

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 05:38 PM

If you follow I-40 the predicted temperatures for tomorrow, May 5 are:
Dallas, TX 92 Wichita Falls, TX 97 Amarillo, TX 94 Tucumcari NM 95 Albuquerque, NM 91 Grants, NM 79 Holbrook, AZ 77 Flagstaff, AZ 73 Kingman, AZ 80 Needles, CA 92
All are predicting sunny weather for the next several days.

Is this summer, spring, or just the desert country.................................. It is probably mostly still green so I'd call it spring, but it really don't matter that much. ;)

Well, 2 things: those are the highs, the lows in AZ and NM on the 40 are pretty cool actually. The other thing, that you might forget when over in the east, is that a dry 90 degrees is considerably nicer than a very humid Tampa, FL 90 degrees.

#14 RonnieReverb

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 05:46 PM

I-40 should be no problem in May. Much of it travels through higher elevations than I-10 does and, thus, is cooler (particularly through Arizona).

Really? We've driven I-70 through Colorado and Utah without a problem, as do hundreds and thousands of RVers and truckers daily.

I don't know, have just heard from some others. i'm towing a car on tow dolly without brakes and 22,000 pounds. Have been told the steep declines there can be dangerous with such a setup.

#15 DavidMc

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 05:56 PM

Regarding towing something -- with or without brakes in the vehicle being towed, see the following page for an introduction to requirements http://www.brakebuddy.com/Towing-Laws
(yes, they do make/sell braking systems; but the information is reasonably accurate).

Another is http://www.roadkingt...m/brakelaws.htm

Edited by DavidMc, 04 May 2012 - 05:57 PM.


#16 Rif

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 11:47 PM

Ronnie,

I guess I just understand the problem. You say you are going to travel through on your way to the coast. Unless you plan to say in one place for more than one night, you will arrive at the RV park late in the day. It's not going to make much difference if you have shade or not. Plug in, turn on the air conditioning, and go to the pool.

If you plan to stay more than one night in some places, just make sure those places are in higher altitude areas like much of New Mexico and Flagstaff, AZ. Daytime highs won't usually be all that bad there, and temperatures tend to drop quickly when the sun goes down in the desert. In fact, the daytime highs won't be all that bad anyplace along your route on I-40 until you drop down toward Needles and head out across the Mojave Desert. From there until you merge onto I-15 in Barstow and drop down into San Bernaradino it could be hot. Of course, I am speaking in generalities and averages. It could be hot almost any place sometime, including anywhere along the East Coast, Middle America or the West Coast.

Edited by Rif, 04 May 2012 - 11:50 PM.

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#17 RonnieReverb

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Posted 05 May 2012 - 10:04 AM

In fact, the daytime highs won't be all that bad anyplace along your route on I-40 until you drop down toward Needles and head out across the Mojave Desert. From there until you merge onto I-15 in Barstow and drop down into San Bernaradino it could be hot. Of course, I am speaking in generalities and averages. It could be hot almost any place sometime, including anywhere along the East Coast, Middle America or the West Coast.

Well, according to Kirk's temps from yesterday, looks like there's a lot of 90's going on there now.
Dallas, TX 92 Wichita Falls, TX 97 Amarillo, TX 94 Tucumcari NM 95 Albuquerque, NM 91 Grants, NM 79 Holbrook, AZ 77 Flagstaff, AZ 73 Kingman, AZ 80 Needles, CA 92

#18 Rif

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Posted 05 May 2012 - 10:39 AM

Yes, and it is in the 90's in TN, parts of SC, NC, AR and much of OK right now as well. Even Richmond, VA is forecast to get to 93 today. None of those states are in the Southwest, and none of those states cool off as much at night as the western states do because of the western states much lower humidity. It can get into the 90's or even 100's anywhere in the country this time of year. In the Western US you can avoid a lot of the heat by going up in altitude, something you can't do as well in the East.

Edited by Rif, 05 May 2012 - 11:39 AM.

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#19 2gypsies

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Posted 05 May 2012 - 11:01 AM

I guess I'm not "getting it". Why such a big worry if you're just driving through? As was stated earlier, you'll be driving during the day with your air on. By the time you stop it'll be cooler. Even if it isn't, turn on the air and relax! Millions of folks live in the SW deserts. That's what they do if they're too hot. Temperatures/weather can be bad anywhere you go. They're unpredictable. As for the "higher interstates" being too mountainous - they're interstates and they're meant for driving. Folks do it all the time, including RVers. Take your pick of one and just go for it. Think positively and have a great trip!

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#20 Barbaraok

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Posted 05 May 2012 - 11:17 AM

Why are you pulling a 22,000 lb tow dolly without supplemental brakes on it? It just isn't in the mountains where things can happen. What are you going to do if you need to make a panic stop because of some idiot pulling in front of you?

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