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Old 01-18-2016, 09:31 AM   #1
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Southern IL to Moore Haven, Florida

Changed my campground, found one with a golf course.

Spending the night at Valdosta Saturday and Sunday, then going into Florida Monday morning.

So I've checked mapquest, Yahoo, and Google for trip directions.

Mapquest wants me to take I 75 to the florida turnpike, then get on 27 around Orlando. Then 27 almost all the way to Moore Haven. Internet research tells me highway 27 is junk, so I'm discounting that route.

Google says I 75 to Florida turnpike, then get on us 441 and then 78. Looks like some 2 lane in there. Plus $20 in tolls.

Yahoo takes me on I 75 all the way to Ft. Myers, then just exit and get on hwy 80 and go right to the campsite, pretty much all 4 lane. Only problem is it's around 30 miles further and goes by more city areas.

Anybody take these routes and have recommendations?
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:16 AM   #2
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Rt 27 is a good road, 4-6 lanes. You do have traffic lights along the way. Enjoy the orange groves along the way. If you decide on 27 I like to exit I75 at RT 44, exit 329, to avoid the turnpike. Take 44 to 27.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:20 AM   #3
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Rt 27 is a good road, 4-6 lanes. You do have traffic lights along the way. Enjoy the orange groves along the way. If you decide on 27 I like to exit I75 at RT 44, exit 329, to avoid the turnpike. Take 44 to 27.
Thanks, that's amazing. I did a quick google search and read about narrow lanes, crumbling pavement, soft shoulders and deep dropoffs along the shoulders.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:29 AM   #4
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Rt 44 to 27 is also 4 lane.
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Old 01-22-2016, 05:34 AM   #5
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This is turning into a disaster. Ice from 45 miles south of me all the way to Nashville. Thought of taking the Memphis route but Memphis has ice also.

Was going to leave in the morning but looks like I'll put it off until Sunday and maybe the roads will be cleared by then.

Wish I'd have left a week ago.
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Old 01-22-2016, 08:29 AM   #6
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Went out and swept the snow off the roof of the st250rb a little bit ago and cranked up the heat a little more.
I'm really impressed with the insulation in the roof of this unit, it has to be insulated well to hold the snow like it has.
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Old 01-22-2016, 10:22 AM   #7
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Just be careful if your rig sits there like that for any amount of time and you get a lot of snow.
It could start melting it down and eventually end up as a layer of ice up there. It could start to back up and run inside, plus, if there is a layer of ice buildup it could slide off when you hit the road south. Ending up on somebody's hood or windshield.
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Old 01-22-2016, 01:32 PM   #8
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No snow in the forecast, and that's the reason I cleaned off the roof. I didn't want to be a snow comet. Also didn't want an ice block to rip something off my roof.

After we load for a while I'll put the slide back in for the night.
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Old 01-29-2016, 07:39 AM   #9
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Well I got here Monday around 3:30 pm.

Got to Lake Park GA around 11:30 pm Sunday night. The Camping World campground wasn't really anything to brag on. The pedestal, water, and sewer were all in the wrong places. I didn't need the sewer but I did need the water and power. Since it was 30 degrees I just filled my tank up 3/4 full so we could have water. I pressurized the system through the city connection first so I could check for a water heater leak at the plug I had taken out when I blew the water out of the rig earlier in the winter with my air compressor, and also to fill the water heater.

With all my meticulous trip planning I didn't think of the fact that I would lose an hour because of driving into eastern time. I felt pretty silly about that when I saw my truck radio screen jump an hour ahead as I was barreling down the interstate.

Nashville was absolutely terrible, I'm real glad we waited until Sunday to leave. I can only imagine how bad it as Saturday. After Chattanooga all ice was gone and things were ok.

Went I75 all the way to Ft Myers and then across on 80.
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Old 01-29-2016, 07:56 AM   #10
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Campground is nice. I had to go back to Ft. Myers to get another sewer hose though, since I'm on a new site and the pedestal is a mile away. Stopped to wash my truck since it was covered in road salt. Used a "touchless automatic" and followed the directions to a T, and the arm came down on my hood denting it and scratching it. Probably $400 in damage. Truck has 2000 miles on it.

Went to camping world and walmart. Decided I didn't like Ft Myers traffic, worse than St. Louis at rush hour. Thought I had everything I needed and went back to campsite.
It started raining, it rained for 2 solid days and it rained hard.

Went to set up outside tv, I tested it in the house before we left but it was too cold to try the mount out on the trailer. Put tv on trailer and realized I had no room behind it for the power cord or the coax. Searched all over the internet, found nothing but mounts. Called campng world at ft myers, put on hold 4 times. Called North Trail RV in Ft. Myers, put on hold and cut off 3 times. Called a few tv shops and ace hardware.

Went ahead and drove back to North Trail rv, they try to sell me a complete mount and don't understand why I don't want to pull the mounting bracket off the outside of my new trailer and screw theirs into the side. Went to Camping World, talked to parts guy. All I need are some longer screws and spacers, this isn't rocket science. He tells me "well these mounts are brand specific so you should talk to your dealer."

Went to best buy, they tried to sell me a huge mount for $100.

I hate Ft Myers, I hate Camping world, and I hate North Trail RV. I may have to use the camping world campground at lake park on my way home, but it's going to be my life's goal to not spend any money at either place (besides that one campground since it's handy for my stopover) in the rest of my lifetime.

Loaded up tv, took it to ace hardware 12 miles up the road, bought screws and spacers and washers and mounted tv.
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Old 01-29-2016, 08:31 AM   #11
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Rain has stopped finally but it's 55 and windy today and golf course is soaked so no activity today.
Trailer has apparently sunk in the florida sand somewhere. Entrance door is getting hard to close and one bathroom cabinet door is hitting another. Have to look into this today and possibly re-level.
Just discovered that the grill mount that I had no use for makes a great drying rack for our wet rug. It's too windy to put the awning out and hang stuff off of it.

Wish I'd have brought my oil filled radiator heater to dry stuff out but it was supposed to be 70-80 degrees down here and I didn't think I had any need for it since I was full up on places to put things anyhow.

I managed to make it down here without a pair of channel locks, everyone's main tool, not sure how they found their way out of my tool kit. Also forgot my craftsmen tool kit with wrenches, sockets, and multiple screwdriver bits.

I have another socket set, and screwdrivers, and I bought channel locks. No square bits so I had to fix my screen door latch with a phillips.

This has definitely been a learning process so far.
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Old 01-29-2016, 02:36 PM   #12
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Bet it still beats IL weather though
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Old 01-31-2016, 05:05 AM   #13
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Bet it still beats IL weather though
Sure does.
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Old 02-11-2016, 09:55 AM   #14
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Back home, 25 degrees, snow all over the place.

Tough trip home. I paid for an extra day in Florida, tried for 2 but my spot was booked. Stopped at Lake Park Ga again to stay at the camping world campground for the night. After the rudeness and uselessness of the camping world employees in Ft Myers I swore to never spend a nickel with them again, but it was handy. Maybe I haven't mentioned it yet, but I hate the entire Ft. Myers area.

Went in to pay, guy says are you a good sam member, I said no, he said well if you join I'll let you have the night for free. I handed him $25. Nice guy. The spot would have cost $23.60.

Spent the night, got up early to winterize the trailer for our trip home. The lock on my camper shell was froze and the $100 air compressor I bought in Florida to blow the lines out was in the back of the truck. Also the 6x6's I use under the stabilizers and the kennel for my big lab go in the back of the truck.
Worked on the lock for an hour and then made a new plan. Just drained the trailer and water heater. Moved stuff around and put the 6x6's in the front storage compartment. Put the dog kennel/crate on the bed with pillows to keep it from crashing into the entertainment center.

Ended up not leaving until 10.

Wind was fierce all the way from our campground in Florida to Lake Park, and then again to probably Atlanta. Blowing me all over the place. I happened to be glancing in my rear view once when a gust hit and saw the top of the trailer list 6 inches to the shoulder side of the road. It was a real battle.
Then up by and past Nashville, snow and ice. 3 cars wrecked on bridges. One semi tractor car hauler on fire. I'm going 45 at times, wife keeps reminding me I'm going too slow, I said Look it's either this or pull over.

Found a rest area to pull into. I probably would have spent the night there but tractor trailers had all the spots taken. Barely enough room for me to get in there to go to the bathroom and let the dog out.

Camper shell lock decided to become workable on about my 1st or 2nd fuel stop so at least I could get to the emergency water cans.

Road cleared up some once I got to Kentucky. Semi tractors and cars passing me going 70-75 while I was going 50-55 and coasting across bridges.

Finally got home just before midnight.

I booked a month at the same resort for next year, plus an extra day. Already wishing I'd have booked 2 months. Too much work getting down there to only stay 2 weeks.

Now I need to get outside and un hook and level the trailer, empty the fridge and blow out the water lines. It's 25 degrees or so here so I'm not looking forward to it.
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Old 02-11-2016, 12:51 PM   #15
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What an adventure. At least you make it home safe.
I figure if we ever go, to stay at least 6-8 weeks.
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:02 PM   #16
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After the beating we took on the road my wife is beginning to listen seriously about my motorhome dreams.
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Old 03-01-2016, 03:44 PM   #17
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I booked a month for next year at the same place before I left, but decided that wasn't really long enough. With the way pricing is, 3 months is not far from a years cost.
So today I locked up a year starting Dec. 1. I am guaranteed a spot whenever I want to go, no worry about reservations, and am guaranteed a chance to renew each year. Wife is thrilled since we got the same spot and she liked our spot.

Since I rent for the year I can put up a shed to store things, or pour a little more concrete if I want, but I doubt I do very much.
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Old 03-01-2016, 05:58 PM   #18
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I booked a month for next year at the same place before I left, but decided that wasn't really long enough. With the way pricing is, 3 months is not far from a years cost.
So today I locked up a year starting Dec. 1. I am guaranteed a spot whenever I want to go, no worry about reservations, and am guaranteed a chance to renew each year. Wife is thrilled since we got the same spot and she liked our spot.

Since I rent for the year I can put up a shed to store things, or pour a little more concrete if I want, but I doubt I do very much.
Congrats! We found a nice little "home" campground during our last trip to FL. One that we'd like to come back to often, and my wife likes too, just like yours does. Just think - in one trip, you've become a real "snowbird!" You've been through a lot, may your next trip down be a piece of cake!
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