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Sacramento to Florida, where can we camp cheap?


MoonTimber

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So we just got an old 27' 1991 Jamboree motor home. We're bought it so we could go weekend camping here in California but I'm not asking about that right now. We want to take our kids on a cross country trip to visit family in Florida this fall. The challenge I have is planning out our overnight stays on a long trip like this.

 

I've seen several campsite directory books on Amazon. I don't know if any of them are any good, so I'd love recommendations. We want to alternate between boondocking and campsites with hookups. I need something I can look at so we can pick our next campsite while we're driving from state to state without relying on access to the internet.

 

My family lives in Lakeland Florida - that's halfway between Orlando and Tampa. Once we get to Florida we probably won't want to boondock more than one or two nights, but I won't be able to afford much more than $25 a night. We actually stayed in a really nice hotel in Orlando two years ago for $35 a night, so it doesn't make much sense to me to spend $30 on a campsite. I know there are campsites in Florida as low as $10 with water and electric, but I don't know where they are or if you need to bring along body armor if you camp in them.

 

I'd love to hear about inexpensive sites in central Florida if anyone has first hand experience with them. We're probably going to visit family for two weeks then head back to California.

 

We might consider one or two nights in a more expensive campsite if there is some compelling reason like a view of the beach.

 

Looks like gas is going to cost me between $1300 and $2000 round trip depending on how much gas costs this fall.

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Walmarts are a good option for overnight parking. Call ahead and ask permission, if OK to o/n park, just pull in, park away from the store and you are good for the night. You can dash into the store & pick up dinner from the deli if you want.

 

Here is a link to a Yahoo group with a list of all the WM's and their o/n parking status. You do have to join the group to access the list. Once you have joined the list is in the "files" section.

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Thanks Linda!

 

I paid $39 this afternoon to sign up as an Escapee member. Four hours later and I haven't gotten an email confirmation or anything. I guess I'll have to give them a call in the morning.

 

Do you have to pay another $10 to access that directory, or is it just $10 if you want to download the whole thing?

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The 10 bucks gives you access through a download ,plus updated versions every couple of months with changes.

You can get next year's Day's End Listing at a discount or even free by submitting updates of existing locations or new locations that you find. Details can be found on the site when you do your first download.Tell Guy popeye said "hey" skuh kuh kuh kuh kuh

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I am basically doing the reverse route - woohoo. There are a few online "passport america" type discount clubs I've heard about lately. I have not subscribed to any as of yet, but am looking into it. A buddy of mine in San Diego said he spoke with a company called Roverpass.com and they planned his route for him. They have a subscription type service like passport america. Anyhow, let me know if you need any tips while in FL since I'm from central FL.

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A buddy of mine in San Diego said he spoke with a company called Roverpass.com and they planned his route for him. They have a subscription type service like passport america.

 

Very expensive...$99 PER MONTH!!!

 

I'm not sure how it's like Passport America since their website doesn't have any information that I could find on how much it costs to stay at one of their member RV parks. For $99 per month, do you get to stay for free (for up to 4 nights in any one campground during a billing period)? For 1/2 price? Full price?

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No one directory (not even Days End) or website lists every campsite or campground. Here are a few websites we use Free Campsites, Free Campgrounds, Bob's Cheap or Free Campgrounds, Dean's List, Boondockers Welcome, and Harvest Hosts, The National Forest Campground Guide and the Ultimate Public Campground Project websites list both free and pay public campgrounds. In printed/ebook versions there is the Escapees Days End Directory and Don Wright's Guide to Free Campgrounds. In Florida some of the Wildlife Management Areas and Water Management Districts allow boondocking.

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Be careful, and do some research if you want to use "Roverpass.com" mentioned earlier. It looks like a startup and it "could" be a scam. But IF it is for real, $99/month for MAYBE 1/2 price or free RV site could be a good deal. There is a 4 day & move requirement or pay full price if you stay longer, according to the website.

 

Of course, if it is like Passport America, most RV parks on the program will put restrictions on when and how long you can stay at the reduced rate. There is no reason why a RV park would offer a 1/2 price discount if they have plenty of guests staying. However when the off season beging the 1/2 price is much better than an empty site.

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I am basically doing the reverse route - woohoo. There are a few online "passport america" type discount clubs I've heard about lately. I have not subscribed to any as of yet, but am looking into it. A buddy of mine in San Diego said he spoke with a company called Roverpass.com and they planned his route for him. They have a subscription type service like passport america. Anyhow, let me know if you need any tips while in FL since I'm from central FL.

 

I'll definately get back in touch with you. We lived in Lakeland for about three years before I had to move to California. That's where my parents and my brother live. But we didn't own an RV while we lived there. All of my RV experience was in Ohio and Kentucky where I lived before that. When is your trip? I might know some good spots by the time you come out here.

 

I'm budgeting $40 to spend one night at the campground in Ft. DeSoto beach. I'm sure there has to be other gulf coast beach campsites that cost less or are even free. DeSoto is the only beach location I know of. We want to have at least one day camped on the beach, even if it's a beach along our route like up on the panhandle near Panama city or Pensacola. I'm trying to figure out how to strap our kayaks to the roof!

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No one directory (not even Days End) or website lists every campsite or campground. Here are a few websites we use Free Campsites, Free Campgrounds, Bob's Cheap or Free Campgrounds, Dean's List, Boondockers Welcome, and Harvest Hosts, The National Forest Campground Guide and the Ultimate Public Campground Project websites list both free and pay public campgrounds. In printed/ebook versions there is the Escapees Days End Directory and Don Wright's Guide to Free Campgrounds. In Florida some of the Wildlife Management Areas and Water Management Districts allow boondocking.

Wow, that list is going to give me a weeks worth of reading! Thanks!

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Check put Passport America. 1600 campgrounds across the country. Your annual membership will cut the regular rate in 1\2. There are restriction set up by each CG but you will save money

 

Are you using Passport America? I'm checking it out right now. Seems like a few people have mentioned it.

 

What fees have you found yourself paying in different locations?

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It is worth looking at State park camp grounds. They will not have full hookups with sewer [ mostly ] but many have electricity to sites with water and a dump station on site. Nightly rates 10$ - 20$

 

EG Florida state parks camping at Torreya 16$

 

I followed your advice. According to the Florida government website, camping is $16 to $42 and they have 50 parks with campsites which can be found here: https://www.floridastateparks.org/activity-list/Camping

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SKP RV parks are pretty reasonably priced (around $20 a night with full hookups) with decent bathrooms, showers and laundry. Route yourself so that you can spend a night or two at them when possible. :)

 

WDR

 

What is SKP? Is that part of the escapee network?

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I'm getting quite the education on this topic. Finding places and planning a route is more complex than I would have thought. For this trip it's actually good to start planning way in advance. Apparently, Florida state parks allow you to reserve a campsite up to 11 months in advance, and all the beachfront campsites are already filling up for October and November. If we want one or two days at the beach this fall we actually need to make reservations sometime in the next few weeks or it looks like all the sites with electricity will be gone!

 

Hopefully, I'll find a beach front site where we can boondock.

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I need more ejumacashun!

 

We just got our Escapee (SKP) package in the mail. I haven't purchased my download yet from days end directory but I'm looking at the free sample. There are a lot of abbreviations that have me lost, like CP, BD, no D, etc. The abbreviations are scattered everywhere and I'm not part of the cool people who know what all the abbreviations mean. Is there a dictionary somewhere?

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I need more ejumacashun!

 

We just got our Escapee (SKP) package in the mail. I haven't purchased my download yet from days end directory but I'm looking at the free sample. There are a lot of abbreviations that have me lost, like CP, BD, no D, etc. The abbreviations are scattered everywhere and I'm not part of the cool people who know what all the abbreviations mean. Is there a dictionary somewhere?

Once you download the Days End file, there is a list of all the abbreviations down near the bottom of the file. Many of the abbreviations are unique to Days End.

 

CP is City or County Park, BD is BoonDock, "no D" is no dump station.

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