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DXSMac
During my working career (I'm 51 and retired), I have relocated from one end of the country to another four different times (BY MYSELF), and during my career, I spent about half of my career on business travel using my car, often driving up to 500 miles in one day to get to a destination (and most trips I was by myself!).

I'm planning a trip from WA to CA (1200 miles one way) for Thanksgiving in my RV, so why do I feel apprehensive? I'm going to do it, but I'm feeling apprehensive. Is this a good thing? Am I feeling apprehensive because I'm 51, not 25 any more? Or am I feeling apprehensive about the fact that it's a BIG OL HUGE RV (Ok, only 30 feet, Class C..., but it's HUGE to me!) and not a car? Or am I worried about hitting snow somewhere and how do I handle it? I'M NOT SURE WHY I FEEL APPREHENSIVE, BUT IT'S PROBABLY ONE OF THE THREE OR ALL THREE!

I've been RV'ing for four years. I anticipate this trip will take me 1.5 weeks, and that includes building in some "rest" or "what if" days.... I have taken trips of 2 weeks, where I went from WA to OR, and stayed 3 days or so at many different places. I did ok! But I'm feeling apprehensive about travelling from WA to CA!

How do I get over this panic attack? ohmy.gif

Ok, I also had a panic attack before I took my RV on a ferry (I was worried that when I made a sharp left turn to get on the ferry, I would "whack" the car in the next lane.... and believe it or not, I was actually worried that my RV would sink the boat......) but I got over it after I got on the ferry (and there were four more RV's bigger than me, so if the boat sinks, IT'S NOT ME!!!!)!

Ok, I know I just "GOTTA DO IT," but how do I get over this panic attack before I go? unsure.gif


AAAAACCCCKKKKK!!!!

JJ
pianotuna
Hi,

You will be fine in an RV in the snow--far better traction and far better visibility than a measly old car. Besides if the going gets rough you can always pull off the road (preferably at the next town) and have a nice boondocking experience.

I've driven my RV in very bad weather conditions--and at extremely low temperatures.

Have a *great* trip!
Beastdriver
DSCMax: A little anxiety ain't a bad thing. It keeps you on your toes and makes you conservatively cautious. We've driven a 40-footer an average of 10,000 miles each year for the past five years, traversing all the states at least twice. My rules are (1) stop driving when you are tired, (2) stop driving if the weather gets bad, (3) stop driving if the traffic becomes unbearable, (4) never drive more than 200-250 miles per day unless there is no other alternative, (5) don't travel on or around holidays. And, if all else fails, just stop until you get over your jitters. You sound like a cautious driver to me--the sort of people I like on the road around me. You can do this!
DXSMac
Well, I will probably be fine driving from WA to OR, but driving from OR to CA will probably panic me! I'm going to avoid LA at all possible costs, but my destination is outside LA. AAACCCKKKK! I'm still panicking! I'm going to leave the previous Friday.

The main reason I'm doing this trip (besides visiting a friend) to California is to get myself used to long distances in my RV. One of these days I want to take my RV to Pennsylvania to see the Flight 93 Memorial. I really want to see that, but the thought of driving my RV across the country.... AAAACCKKKKK!!! And I refuse to fly! Flying has become more of a hassle than it's worth. Might as well see the country instead of "passing over it."

JJ
DXSMac
QUOTE(Beastdriver @ Oct 13 2007, 01:15 PM) *

(3) stop driving if the traffic becomes unbearable,


Um..... what if I'm on an LA freeway with horrendous traffic? You can't just stop...... I'm going to try to avoid LA if I can, but my destination is outside LA.....


QUOTE(Beastdriver @ Oct 13 2007, 01:15 PM) *

(4) never drive more than 200-250 miles per day unless there is no other alternative,


My limit is 300 miles, but I've never done more than two days in a row where I drove 300 miles, I will be testing this on this trip!

QUOTE(Beastdriver @ Oct 13 2007, 01:15 PM) *

(5) don't travel on or around holidays.


Well, this will be Thanksgiving..... But I'm going to leave the previous Friday and hope to arrive Tues or Wed. I was going to start returing Friday, day after Thanks day, but maybe I should wait until Sat, who knows.....

On trips like this where I am uncertain, I ALWAYS make sure I stay in parks with WiFi, so I can monitor road conditions.

I'm really nervous about this trip, but like I said in another post, one of these days I want to drive to Pennsylvania to see the Flight 93 thingie. I'm using this CA trip to "test the waters" on long distance driving.

JJ
Florida Native
We were on a ferry from Deleware to Cape May, NJ and I hac to flip in my mirrors we were so tigh. I could not place my finger between the flipped in mirror and the trailer next to me. We love ferry and take them any time we can. The thing to remember is you are in charge, not the ranger or man on the boat. Stop if you feel uncomfortable. You will be fine. Those off days really help. Don't know if you have a toad, but the exploring around is so much fun.
BBear
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Oct 13 2007, 04:24 PM) *

Well, I will probably be fine driving from WA to OR, but driving from OR to CA will probably panic me! I'm going to avoid LA at all possible costs, but my destination is outside LA. AAACCCKKKK! I'm still panicking! I'm going to leave the previous Friday.

The main reason I'm doing this trip (besides visiting a friend) to California is to get myself used to long distances in my RV. One of these days I want to take my RV to Pennsylvania to see the Flight 93 Memorial. I really want to see that, but the thought of driving my RV across the country.... AAAACCKKKKK!!! And I refuse to fly! Flying has become more of a hassle than it's worth. Might as well see the country instead of "passing over it."

JJ


I drove my first motorhome when I was 20 and I still remember how apprehensive I was when the first tractor-trailer passed me and I thought I was going to get pushed off the road and I remember the first rain storm I drove it in that was so bad I couldn't see...I still have those apprehensions today driving a car, but I just don't let them bother me.

Also, with age, I find the amount of time I spend driving has become less...I used to be able to drive a motorhome 600 plus miles in one day with no problem...now 300 miles in a car is about my limit, LOL.

DXSMac, I live about 15 miles from the Flight 93 Crash Site...if you need any help or have any questions about the area, please let me know, I'd be happy to help you. smile.gif
Browzin
DXSMac

Ok maybe we can help a little. We make the commute from Federal Way, WA. to Yuma, AZ. around Thanksgiving every year. The only place you will need to worry about snow will be on the pass (I-5 OR/CA boarder). It would have to be a bad storm to close the road down. In the far fetch chance that happens, just pull over with all the trucks and wait for the plows to lead you through. (We have only got caught one time and had to wait for the plows in 30 years of making the trip.) (You also have the option of going down Hwy 101.)

If you mention what town you are going to in the L.A. area everyone will be able to give you better ideas on what route would be the best to take (most important is the day & time that you travel through the L.A. area).



Now there really isn't any thing to panic over or to really worry about, you are travelling at a good time of the year and giving your self plenty of time.
DXSMac
QUOTE(BBear @ Oct 13 2007, 09:47 PM) *

DXSMac, I live about 15 miles from the Flight 93 Crash Site...if you need any help or have any questions about the area, please let me know, I'd be happy to help you. smile.gif



I'll remember that! I really want to see that place!

JJ
DXSMac
QUOTE(Browzin @ Oct 13 2007, 10:00 PM) *

The only place you will need to worry about snow will be on the pass (I-5 OR/CA boarder). It would have to be a bad storm to close the road down. In the far fetch chance that happens, just pull over with all the trucks and wait for the plows to lead you through. (We have only got caught one time and had to wait for the plows in 30 years of making the trip.) (You also have the option of going down Hwy 101.) [/b]

If you mention what town you are going to in the L.A. area everyone will be able to give you better ideas on what route would be the best to take (most important is the day & time that you travel through the L.A. area).



I kind of thought that would be the "snow place", between Grants Pass, and maybe Weed or Yreka, after that, should be ok.

I'm headed to Lancaster, will try to stay at Antelope Fairgrounds. That's the closest RV Park to where my friend lives. RV Parks are severly lacking in that area. According to MapQuest and to the Good Sam trip Routing, I think I can avoid LA by going around.

I don't pull a toad, too chicken at this point. My "transportation" is a little electric bicycle (www.egovehicles.com) that goes 25 miles on a charge. I wear a helmet.

JJ
Browzin
Going to Lancaster, that's out in the desert, no traffic problem, we go that route sometimes when heading to Yuma, it all depends on the mood we are in at the time and if we need fuel or not.

You can take I-5 down to Bakersfield and then cut over to 58 to Mojave and then take 14 and go straight into Lancaster, the only thing you have to contend with is Tehachapi Pass, (about once a year it will have snow for a few hours, nothing to worry about that early in the year.), Or you can take 99 at Sacramento all the way down to Bakersfield & take 58 to Mojave & 14 to Lancaster, (we take 99 down, more towns, more places to stop, more campgrounds, etc., etc.) 99 does have a little more traffic, (but not enough to make it any thing like I-5 between Seattle and Tacoma, if you can handle that traffic you can handle every thing else on the trip with out a bit of a problem).

As far as the snow on the pass, you will only find it on I-5 at the top of the Siskiyou pass, it will only be for a couple of miles at most, at that time of the year, and that is if a freak snow storm comes in an snows that low that early, (Jan/Feb then yes, you should expect snow on the pass)
DXSMac
QUOTE(Browzin @ Oct 14 2007, 02:36 PM) *

You can take I-5 down to Bakersfield and then cut over to 58 to Mojave and then take 14 and go straight into Lancaster, the only thing you have to contend with is Tehachapi Pass, (about once a year it will have snow for a few hours, nothing to worry about that early in the year.), Or you can take 99 at Sacramento all the way down to Bakersfield & take 58 to Mojave & 14 to Lancaster, (we take 99 down, more towns, more places to stop, more campgrounds, etc., etc.) 99 does have a little more traffic, (but not enough to make it any thing like I-5 between Seattle and Tacoma, if you can handle that traffic you can handle every thing else on the trip with out a bit of a problem).



That's the exact way Good Sam trip planning thingie routed it. As for Seattle....I hate driving the RV between Everett and Seattle, I SWARE the freeway lanes are narrower through there! And when you are in an RV and have an 18 wheeler on both sides, well, I was never clausterphobic before, but I became one at that point! One time, instead of going down through Seattle, I took the ferry to Port Townsend with the hope of connecting back up at Olympia, but my Magellan got screwed up and I think I spent about two hours going in circles. I think I will go around on I-405, more miles, but I avoid Seattle....

I think I will map out all the Costco stores between here and there, cheap gas there....

JJ
Browzin
I-5 between Everett & Seatttle is a total different mess all of its own, even if the express lanes are open. Our oldest daughter moved last year from Everett to Mountlake Terrace so we are very familiar with that mess. Like you we try and avoid that stretch of I-5 nightmare, we take the 405 to hwy 9 to hwy 2 and come into Everett that way, like you say it is a little longer but unless you hit commute traffic it is not bad. (It still will be the worse traffic of the entire trip for you.)



When you make your list of Costco Gas locations make sure that the particular CostCo has gas pumps, not all Costco locations have Gas, also try and pick the ones with easy freeway on/off (example: Federal Way Costco has easy on/off but Lacey Costco is way off beaten path). We normally start with Costco @ Federal Way then stop at Wilsonville Costco then Medford Costco then Redding Costco followed by Sth Sacramento Costco then Bakersfield Costco. This breaks up the drive and keeps the tank from getting below 1/2 full.
DXSMac
QUOTE(Browzin @ Oct 14 2007, 09:50 PM) *

When you make your list of Costco Gas locations make sure that the particular CostCo has gas pumps, not all Costco locations have Gas, also try and pick the ones with easy freeway on/off (example: Federal Way Costco has easy on/off but Lacey Costco is way off beaten path). We normally start with Costco @ Federal Way then stop at Wilsonville Costco then Medford Costco then Redding Costco followed by Sth Sacramento Costco then Bakersfield Costco. This breaks up the drive and keeps the tank from getting below 1/2 full.



Thanks! I agree, I won't go way out of the way for a Costco. If it's "easy on off," then I go.

JJ
jperera
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Oct 14 2007, 05:31 PM) *

QUOTE(Browzin @ Oct 14 2007, 02:36 PM) *

You can take I-5 down to Bakersfield and then cut over to 58 to Mojave and then take 14 and go straight into Lancaster, the only thing you have to contend with is Tehachapi Pass, (about once a year it will have snow for a few hours, nothing to worry about that early in the year.), Or you can take 99 at Sacramento all the way down to Bakersfield & take 58 to Mojave & 14 to Lancaster, (we take 99 down, more towns, more places to stop, more campgrounds, etc., etc.) 99 does have a little more traffic, (but not enough to make it any thing like I-5 between Seattle and Tacoma, if you can handle that traffic you can handle every thing else on the trip with out a bit of a problem).



That's the exact way Good Sam trip planning thingie routed it. As for Seattle....I hate driving the RV between Everett and Seattle, I SWARE the freeway lanes are narrower through there! And when you are in an RV and have an 18 wheeler on both sides, well, I was never clausterphobic before, but I became one at that point! One time, instead of going down through Seattle, I took the ferry to Port Townsend with the hope of connecting back up at Olympia, but my Magellan got screwed up and I think I spent about two hours going in circles. I think I will go around on I-405, more miles, but I avoid Seattle....

I think I will map out all the Costco stores between here and there, cheap gas there....

JJ
jperera
[quote name='DXSMac' date='Oct 14 2007, 05:31 PM' post='8669']
[quote name='Browzin' post='8666' date='Oct 14 2007, 02:36 PM']
You can take I-5 down to Bakersfield and then cut over to 58 to Mojave and then take 14 and go straight into Lancaster, the only thing you have to contend with is Tehachapi Pass, (about once a year it will have snow for a few hours, nothing to worry about that early in the year.), Or you can take 99 at Sacramento all the way down to Bakersfield & take 58 to Mojave & 14 to Lancaster, (we take 99 down, more towns, more places to stop, more campgrounds, etc., etc.) 99 does have a little more traffic, (but not enough to make it any thing like I-5 between Seattle and Tacoma, if you can handle that traffic you can handle every thing else on the trip with out a bit of a problem).
[/quote]


We just came back from the Bakersfield area yesterday. We have traveled I-5 and 99 recently to and from Sacramento and I think 99 is "less rough". They have resurfaced the road in many places. Other that possible wind over the Tehachapi, 58 is a nice drive.
gwbischoff
If you're only going as far as Lancaster you won't get anywhere near our lovely traffic.

I live within spitting distance of 5 major LA freeways so trust me, you won't experience anything like what's further south.

On that note, if you are planning on going through LA, be prepared. You may have seen this on the news:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071015/ap_on_...VUinP7s6xVsaMYA

Now, that's between Lancaster and LA. As of this morning (10/15), I hear it has been reopened but it must be a nightmare.

Also, you might want to do some more research about the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds. I've driven by it and I wasn't all that impressed. It's OK, but I'm not sure what you like/dislike.


Oh, and BEASTMASTER, I could't agree more with the "A little anxiety ain't a bad thing" comment.

I was really apprehensive when we bought our Class A and after driving it a while, I have to remind myself that I'm driving a 13 ton-35 foot long rolling apartment.

My mantra as I'm buckling my seatbelt is "Take your time, Dummy. Take your time, Dummy. Ohm."
BBear
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Oct 14 2007, 11:21 AM) *

QUOTE(BBear @ Oct 13 2007, 09:47 PM) *

DXSMac, I live about 15 miles from the Flight 93 Crash Site...if you need any help or have any questions about the area, please let me know, I'd be happy to help you. smile.gif



I'll remember that! I really want to see that place!

JJ


Just keep in mind, the nearest campgrounds are about 20 miles from the site.

I believe it will be a memorial you'll never forget...I know I haven't since the first I saw it...I couldn't leave. Really weird, because you're standing in the middle of what was farmland and then a reclaimed strip mine and you think to yourself why here and then you realize better it crashed here then what its intended target would have been. What's also neat is all the ambassadors who will answer questions for you are all residents of the area.

I'm almost going to feel sad when the permanent memorial gets built, because I really just love the simplicity of the temporary one.
DXSMac
QUOTE(gwbischoff @ Oct 15 2007, 12:18 PM) *

Also, you might want to do some more research about the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds. I've driven by it and I wasn't all that impressed. It's OK, but I'm not sure what you like/dislike.



Believe me, I would stay somewhere else if I could, but according to the reviews on here, this is all there is! ohmy.gif My other option is a state park. Lancaster is lacking in RV parks.

JJ
gwbischoff
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Oct 16 2007, 09:40 AM) *

QUOTE(gwbischoff @ Oct 15 2007, 12:18 PM) *

Also, you might want to do some more research about the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds. I've driven by it and I wasn't all that impressed. It's OK, but I'm not sure what you like/dislike.



Believe me, I would stay somewhere else if I could, but according to the reviews on here, this is all there is! ohmy.gif My other option is a state park. Lancaster is lacking in RV parks.

JJ


I couldn't find a review for this one anywhere but it might be worth looking into:

http://www.shadyelms.com/

I don't have any experience with it personally other than finding their website.
DXSMac
QUOTE(gwbischoff @ Oct 16 2007, 12:36 PM) *

I couldn't find a review for this one anywhere but it might be worth looking into:

http://www.shadyelms.com/

I don't have any experience with it personally other than finding their website.



THANKS!!!! I wanted to stay at a regular RV Park, not a parking lot!

JJ
DXSMac
Regarding the Shady Elms RV Park, I emailed a friend who lives in that area, and this is what I was told (Please excuse the ethnic/racial terms, I do not intend to be racist...)

[QUOTE FROM AN EMAIL I GOT] Safe is a relative term you know. There's a "detention center" down the road and while the area isn't ghetto, it isn't exactly Beverly Hills and there's a mixture of black, hispanic and redneck in the area. I haven't heard of any problems in the RV park, but then again, I haven't paid much attention to that. [END QUOTE FROM AN EMAIL]

Again, this is just what a friend told me, please excuse the ethnic remarks.

I may try it out.

JJ
DXSMac
Ok, here is another "take" on the area around Shady Elms, from the friend I'm actually going to visit:

"Here is what I know about the area where the Shady Elms is located. When I came to this area I stayed at the Best Western on Sierra Highway between K & J (closer to J) and I did not have any problem. The Shady Elms looks like a small place which is next to 2 motels. Train tracks are right across the street and I know from personal experience that there are times when freight trains run early in the morning. I've heard that on Sierra Highway, between L & M, it is considered to be an area where the street [*****] ply their trade. I've also heard that ex-cons and parolees stay at the motels in that area. In my opinion, you would be better off at the fair grounds, however, you might want to contact the Shady Elms to to find out what type of security system they might have, if any."

Ok, I guess I'll stay at the fairgrounds.....

JJ
unsure.gif
Butch
Just bring a dog with you,----a BIG dog, or a gun, a BIG gun !! Just kidding, I would look elsewhere.
gwbischoff
Sorry that didn't work out.

That may account as to why there were no reviews of the place.
DXSMac
QUOTE(gwbischoff @ Oct 18 2007, 12:18 PM) *

Sorry that didn't work out.

That may account as to why there were no reviews of the place.


I just got an email from them. They are booked that week anyway. Just as well. Antelope Valley Fairgrounds RV park is "First come first serve," so I guess I takes my chances. Last resort is going to be the State Park near there, hope it has hookups!

JJ
gwbischoff
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Oct 18 2007, 06:19 PM) *

QUOTE(gwbischoff @ Oct 18 2007, 12:18 PM) *

Sorry that didn't work out.

That may account as to why there were no reviews of the place.


I just got an email from them. They are booked that week anyway. Just as well. Antelope Valley Fairgrounds RV park is "First come first serve," so I guess I takes my chances. Last resort is going to be the State Park near there, hope it has hookups!

JJ



Don't know exactly where you "need" to be, but this is about 20 minutes south of Lancaster:

http://www.rvparkreviews.com/regions/California/Acton.html
DXSMac
QUOTE

Don't know exactly where you "need" to be, but this is about 20 minutes south of Lancaster:

http://www.rvparkreviews.com/regions/California/Acton.html


My friend lives in Palmdale. I just "Mapquested" it, and that's even better!!!!! THANKS!!!!!

JJ
gwbischoff
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Oct 19 2007, 07:15 PM) *

QUOTE

Don't know exactly where you "need" to be, but this is about 20 minutes south of Lancaster:

http://www.rvparkreviews.com/regions/California/Acton.html


My friend lives in Palmdale. I just "Mapquested" it, and that's even better!!!!! THANKS!!!!!

JJ


Great. Hope that works.

If you get lost on your way down the coast, just follow the smoke plumes.
DXSMac
[/quote]
If you get lost on your way down the coast, just follow the smoke plumes.
[/quote]

Apparently so!!! Also, I'm hoping I can AVOID Los Angeles at all costs, I don't care how much I have to spend on gas, I do not want to go near LA. I hope I can program Magellan to say, "don't go near LA."

I have been spending my $50 at Safeway to rack up gas discounts, I have two so far. The Safeway gas discounts are more meaningful in an RV then they are in a car. But sometimes you have to press the key for "pay at window" otherwise you hit a "credit card limit" and you have to use two transactions to fill your RV. Whatever you do, you don't want to have to use TWO of your discounts for ONE fill up! That's a waste! I also have all the Costco's with gas stations mapped out.

I can't wait! I'm still nervous, but I can't wait! biggrin.gif

JJ
Testudo
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Oct 17 2007, 09:24 PM) *

Ok, here is another "take" on the area around Shady Elms, from the friend I'm actually going to visit:

"Here is what I know about the area where the Shady Elms is located. When I came to this area I stayed at the Best Western on Sierra Highway between K & J (closer to J) and I did not have any problem. The Shady Elms looks like a small place which is next to 2 motels. Train tracks are right across the street and I know from personal experience that there are times when freight trains run early in the morning. I've heard that on Sierra Highway, between L & M, it is considered to be an area where the street [*****] ply their trade. I've also heard that ex-cons and parolees stay at the motels in that area. In my opinion, you would be better off at the fair grounds, however, you might want to contact the Shady Elms to to find out what type of security system they might have, if any."

Ok, I guess I'll stay at the fairgrounds.....

JJ
unsure.gif


While Internet RV Forums are great -- we all learn from each other. The downside is that a lot of overthinking goes on. I've camped all my life (all over the world) and nothing bad ever happened. Ironically, I was never worried until I started taking advantage of RV forums. Then there were no end to the people that would volunteer what could,no... what _would_ go wrong if you weren't armed to the teeth, etc., etc. Even I had to reign in the fears that were engenderd by this element. Once they get going, it can be difficult to put everything back in its proper persepctive. I'm wondering if this isn't the cause of your anxiety -- essentially too much 'thinking' about what could go wrong ???

I'm older than you but I feel like I could probably handle your rig on the trip that you've outlined. I wouldn't want to (I feel more secure with the size of my small pickup camper), but your RV doesn't seem as overwelming to me as most bigger rigs do. To put things in perspective, I don't worry about snowfall but rather I tend to have anxiety when I'm 30 miles off road and I'm wondering if I'm going to get stuck in the sand that I see up ahead.

The advantage you have is that you even have lots of experience (apparently) with your RV. The only other thing I can figure is that maybe something else that was central to your life has changed. While I feel quite adventurous going off road into the wilderness to camp, I don't think I could manage to go to a full service campground up the street if say, I lost my wife. She is a great source of security (as well as moments of anxiety [grin!]) to me.

So maybe you have been dwelling on too much information and maybe something has changed and you need to get a new perspective on it. Maybe you are even confusing excitement with anxiety.
DXSMac
QUOTE(Testudo @ Nov 13 2007, 12:35 PM) *


While Internet RV Forums are great -- we all learn from each other. The downside is that a lot of overthinking goes on. I've camped all my life (all over the world) and nothing bad ever happened. Ironically, I was never worried until I started taking advantage of RV forums. Then there were no end to the people that would volunteer what could,no... what _would_ go wrong if you weren't armed to the teeth, etc., etc. Even I had to reign in the fears that were engenderd by this element. Once they get going, it can be difficult to put everything back in its proper persepctive. I'm wondering if this isn't the cause of your anxiety -- essentially too much 'thinking' about what could go wrong ???

I'm older than you but I feel like I could probably handle your rig on the trip that you've outlined. I wouldn't want to (I feel more secure with the size of my small pickup camper), but your RV doesn't seem as overwelming to me as most bigger rigs do. To put things in perspective, I don't worry about snowfall but rather I tend to have anxiety when I'm 30 miles off road and I'm wondering if I'm going to get stuck in the sand that I see up ahead.

The advantage you have is that you even have lots of experience (apparently) with your RV. The only other thing I can figure is that maybe something else that was central to your life has changed. While I feel quite adventurous going off road into the wilderness to camp, I don't think I could manage to go to a full service campground up the street if say, I lost my wife. She is a great source of security (as well as moments of anxiety [grin!]) to me.

So maybe you have been dwelling on too much information and maybe something has changed and you need to get a new perspective on it. Maybe you are even confusing excitement with anxiety.


Um.... does 4 years count as "lots" of experience? Also, the "I've done this before" part I am referring to is..... the four times I have driven across the country in a car due to job relocations. I was ok, I wasn't scared. However, driving from WA to CA in an RV has me somewhat anxious. Ok, something changed? Well, I'm older...... (almost 52), and this is a bigger vehicle..... and I have a pet with me......

You're right, I'm probably worked up over what....*could*... go wrong...... ESPECIALLY IN CALIFORNIA!!!! Too many freeways!

When I first started RV'ing, I would have a big panic attack before I took off for a trip in the RV. But once I got going, I was fine! I have kept all my trips to short distances (one state over or down, remember, I'm in the West, we have big states....). This will be my first time going two states down! And if this were the East, it would be the equivalent of FIVE states down.

two more days to go.....

JJ ph34r.gif
rodman
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Nov 14 2007, 08:28 AM) *

QUOTE(Testudo @ Nov 13 2007, 12:35 PM) *


While Internet RV Forums are great -- we all learn from each other. The downside is that a lot of overthinking goes on. I've camped all my life (all over the world) and nothing bad ever happened. Ironically, I was never worried until I started taking advantage of RV forums. Then there were no end to the people that would volunteer what could,no... what _would_ go wrong if you weren't armed to the teeth, etc., etc. Even I had to reign in the fears that were engenderd by this element. Once they get going, it can be difficult to put everything back in its proper persepctive. I'm wondering if this isn't the cause of your anxiety -- essentially too much 'thinking' about what could go wrong ???

I'm older than you but I feel like I could probably handle your rig on the trip that you've outlined. I wouldn't want to (I feel more secure with the size of my small pickup camper), but your RV doesn't seem as overwelming to me as most bigger rigs do. To put things in perspective, I don't worry about snowfall but rather I tend to have anxiety when I'm 30 miles off road and I'm wondering if I'm going to get stuck in the sand that I see up ahead.

The advantage you have is that you even have lots of experience (apparently) with your RV. The only other thing I can figure is that maybe something else that was central to your life has changed. While I feel quite adventurous going off road into the wilderness to camp, I don't think I could manage to go to a full service campground up the street if say, I lost my wife. She is a great source of security (as well as moments of anxiety [grin!]) to me.

So maybe you have been dwelling on too much information and maybe something has changed and you need to get a new perspective on it. Maybe you are even confusing excitement with anxiety.


Um.... does 4 years count as "lots" of experience? Also, the "I've done this before" part I am referring to is..... the four times I have driven across the country in a car due to job relocations. I was ok, I wasn't scared. However, driving from WA to CA in an RV has me somewhat anxious. Ok, something changed? Well, I'm older...... (almost 52), and this is a bigger vehicle..... and I have a pet with me......

You're right, I'm probably worked up over what....*could*... go wrong...... ESPECIALLY IN CALIFORNIA!!!! Too many freeways!

When I first started RV'ing, I would have a big panic attack before I took off for a trip in the RV. But once I got going, I was fine! I have kept all my trips to short distances (one state over or down, remember, I'm in the West, we have big states....). This will be my first time going two states down! And if this were the East, it would be the equivalent of FIVE states down.

two more days to go.....

JJ ph34r.gif


Good Morning JJ,

I live in the central valley. You really won't have but a couple of freeways to deal with and they both are really not bad at all. You won't even get near Los Angels. We haven't seen but 1 day of very patchy fog but you will be on I-5 anyway, you won't be coming through here. The weather has been beautiful and since you will be out in the desert it will be very pretty for you there as well. My wife is from Lancaster and it's really not a bad place at all. You'll be going over Tehachapi and that is a very nice drive. I think you will really enjoy yourself. The desert can be very pretty this time of year. You can take I-5 all the way to Bakersfield and then over to 58 or you can take I-5 to Stockton and come across on 4 to 99. Either way isn't going to be bad. Relax, take you time and enjoy yourself. BTW, I've made the drive you are about to take, Ca to Wa and back.

Just my opinion,
Have a wonderful time
DXSMac
Boy, Testudo's post hit me like a ton of bricks, but it worked! I "reframed" it and IT'S JUST ANOTHER RV TRIP!!!! So, now I'm excited and can't wait (two more days to go, leaving Friday!!!).

Rodman, thanks also for your post. Although it's 70 degrees in southern CA (from NOAA weather site), I have also RV'd in sub freezing weather (three weeks in 2005! That was a royal pain!!! Temps were between 10 and 20!!!) so I know how to handle that, should I encounter it.

On the other hand, I only have ONE NIGHT of experience in SUB ZERO! I did that in my first RV, and that RV didn't have the "Arctic Package." It was minus 2. At the time I did that, my RV had been "winterized" so I couldn't use the toilet. And when you have to go to the restroom at 3:00 in the morning, which means, you have to go outside and use the campground facilities, and put a scarf over your mouth...... Um, I don't want to do that again. The Arctic Package is nice!!!! If anyone plans to RV in cold weather, spend the bucks for the Arctic Package.

JJ
Jerry S
JJ,

I am happy that you took Testudo's post and came away with a positive result. I also thought from most of your numerous posts in this and several other threads that you had a problem with anxiety. I just figured that it has always been part of your personality and any comments that area would be taken negatively.

I do want to add another comment. In many of your posts, you talk about googling this and mapquesting that, etc. As wonderful as the internet is, you may want to use "real" paper maps to familiarize yourself with an area or route before turning to the web. For example, doing so may have prevented all your worries about LA traffic.

Again, happy Turkey Day.

Jerry S.
Texasrvers
DSXMac,

I've been following your posts, and since it is almost time for you to head out I just wanted to say, "Have a great trip." You sound like you are very prepared so things should go smoothly. If by chance something does go wrong try not to let it upset you. Everything can be fixed one way or another. Just do what you can and take it in stride and you'll be fine. When we first started RVing I was very anxious and worried way too much about what "might" happen. I would spend weeks preparing and planning for all the possible bad scenarios. Fortunately we have never had any major trouble. To be truthful I still do a lot of planning (because I like to), but I do not feel anxious anymore--just excited. Of course we have had some things go wrong and have encountered a delay or two. But plans are not carved in stone. They can be changed--sometimes for the better. And just think, once you get this trip behind you you will feel much better about future ones.

Again enjoy your great adventure!

BTW I also wanted to say I really like the picture you have added to your posts. What a precious little face! I know you will take good care of your little one on the trip.
HappiestCamper
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Nov 14 2007, 07:09 PM) *

On the other hand, I only have ONE NIGHT of experience in SUB ZERO! I did that in my first RV, and that RV didn't have the "Arctic Package." It was minus 2. At the time I did that, my RV had been "winterized" so I couldn't use the toilet. And when you have to go to the restroom at 3:00 in the morning, which means, you have to go outside and use the campground facilities, and put a scarf over your mouth...... Um, I don't want to do that again. The Arctic Package is nice!!!! If anyone plans to RV in cold weather, spend the bucks for the Arctic Package.

JJ


Of course, I've been to campgrounds where you needed to put the scarf over your nose when you used their bathrooms blink.gif
DXSMac
QUOTE(Jerry S. @ Nov 15 2007, 10:24 AM) *

JJ,

I am happy that you took Testudo's post and came away with a positive result. I also thought from most of your numerous posts in this and several other threads that you had a problem with anxiety. I just figured that it has always been part of your personality and any comments that area would be taken negatively.

I do want to add another comment. In many of your posts, you talk about googling this and mapquesting that, etc. As wonderful as the internet is, you may want to use "real" paper maps to familiarize yourself with an area or route before turning to the web. For example, doing so may have prevented all your worries about LA traffic.

Again, happy Turkey Day.

Jerry S.


Thanks, Jerry. Um, yes, I do carry AAA motor club maps. And I do have a Magellan, but I have discovered Magellan has problems when it's cloudy outside. It can't get a good signal and the readings are... weird..... or just don't show up.

The RV, to me (even though "only" 30 feet...) is a HUGE THING to drive. When I first started RV'ing, I would have panic attacks before I took off on a trip (THIS RV IS HUGE, OH MY GOD!!!!). I have just gotten to the point where I don't have them any more as long as I travel one state over/down. This trip to CA is a "different" kind of trip for me, I'm having a panic attack again! But I have to do it, because I want to drive to Pennsylvania some day to see the Flight 93 thing.

Also, I checked CALTRANS, and apparently, there is a slight delay both directions for about 2 miles about 7 miles north of Redding. Delay is 30 minutes to 2 hours. Well, I did build in an "oops" day, and I think that will be the day I make a "short" drive, mileage wise.

Thank you all for bearing with me, because I am nervous about this, but, after what Testudo said, ok, I think I can do this!

JJ biggrin.gif
DXSMac
QUOTE(Texasrvers @ Nov 15 2007, 11:23 AM) *

DSXMac,

BTW I also wanted to say I really like the picture you have added to your posts. What a precious little face! I know you will take good care of your little one on the trip.


Thanks, Texasrvers, but unfortunately, that is just an avatar that I found on this website. It's not the actual picture of my cat. But, I think my cat is precious. He is 18 pounds, I think he is part Siamese because he has Siamese coloring and he has the long legs of a Siamese (but not the Siamese face), but he also has white tabby stripes. Hmm...... If I can load a picture of my cat, I'll try it!

JJ blink.gif

YAY! I got it to work! Now I have a picture of MY kitty!!!!!
Testudo
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Nov 14 2007, 07:09 PM) *

Boy, Testudo's post hit me like a ton of bricks, but it worked! I "reframed" it and IT'S JUST ANOTHER RV TRIP!!!! So, now I'm excited and can't wait (two more days to go, leaving Friday!!!).

Gee, I didn't mean to drop any bricks on you [grin!].

I'm glad to hear that you are psyched !!! Have a good trip !

Actually, a little pre-trip day RV drive near home might be a good idea. It might calm you whenever you start to feel anxious about the RV. Also, it would be a good idea to take the pet along on the "practice" trip. The pets get more anxious than the people and they can "read" our anxiety. A short practice trip helps to remind them that it's scary but it will probably come to a good end.

[Did you change you cat avatar ??? I seemed to remember a _different_ cat from a few days ago. Ah! Wait a minute, ...last post explains all.]
Testudo
QUOTE
Thank you all for bearing with me, because I am nervous about this, but, after what Testudo said, ok, I think I can do this!

We'll all be your co-pilots on the trip. If you get into an anxious situation, just remember to think how we would talk you through it if we were there (...as though we _were_ there). You don't have to feel like you are going through it alone because we are all pulling for you. Have great trip!
Texasrvers
Your kitty is cute, too. Glad you got his picture up. Have a good trip! Tell us all about it when you get back.
DXSMac
Day 1:

I woke up at 3:00 AM and couldn't go back to sleep. So, despite the fact that I have trouble driving in the dark (this started in my mid-40's....), I got up and packed up and left anyway. And, I conclude I STILL shouldn't drive in the dark. I did ok, but I don't like to do that.

Anyway, once it got to be light out, I felt fine, just like previous RV trips! Since I left early, I anticipated getting to Albany, OR by 2:30 or so. HA HA HA yeah, right! I-84 eastbound in Portland had an accident that backed traffic up to I-5, so I-5 was crowded because of that. Took me 1.5 hours to get through Portland, OR! Got to Albany by 4:00.

Now, I'm used to...... once I park, I'm here for two or three days. Just the thought of having to get up tomorow to pack up..... ugh! That's why, for now, I'm limiting myself to 300 miles a day, get settled early enough to have time to relax, cook dinner, watch TV, fuss on the computer, go to bed at reasonable hour, and not upset kitty too much.

Weather said it was going to rain in Seattle, I don't like driving the RV down I-5 through Seattle anyway (because I SWARE the freeway lanes are narrower through Seattle, I swear they are!), so I took the Port Townsend ferry. Well, the road to the ferry terminal is kind of rough on kitty (it's a winding road). He does ok on freeway, but not winding roads. Poo and piddle all over his carrier, poor thing. He was not happy and he let me know it! After we got off the ferry, I let him "hunker" in the bed the rest of the trip.

Turns out, it didn't start raining until I got to Centralia, which is the southern part of I-5 in WA state. Rained all the way to Albany.

Ok, time to cook dinner! I'm fine so far, but we'll see tomorrow, I will hit California border tomorrow.

JJ tongue.gif
DXSMac
Day 2.

I'm in Weed, CA. I CAN DO THIS!

Also, I came to the conclusion that..... the "panic attacks" I thought I had..... well, they weren't panic attacks. What I was feeling was...... DREAD! Ok, what am I dreading? THE PACKING! For me, it's a pain in the you know what! I live in a condo, so I have to store my RV somewhere else. This means, I pack the car, drive it to the RV storage, then transfer all from car to RV. And when I unpack, it's also a two step process! I HATE THIS!!

Also, what I was dreading for this particular trip was....... the setting up and taking down every single day! Normally, I drive somewhere, set up, and STAY AWHILE. Then the setting up and taking down isn't too bad. But, when you have to set up and take down every day, well, I was dreading that. And, so far, yes it is a pain in the ****. But not enough to quit RV'ing!

I filled up my tires two days ago. Today, I "thumped" my tires, and one of them "sounds" different. I hope I'm not loosing air. Oh well, I built in an "oops" day just in case....

JJ
DXSMac
Day 3

I decided to take a "chill" day, and stayed one more night in Weed. Last night I walked to a Mexican restaurant, then came back and had a glass of hot spiced wine that I made at home and I'm carrying with me. Well, that combo didn't "sit" well with me. So, I'm taking a chill day. Also, I checked my tires, air pressure seems fine. I can't figure out why the "thump test" is giving me a different sound. (I did this based on seeing a long haul trucker hit his tires with a rubber mallet for the same reason....)

I'm going to ride my E-bike around Weed and check it out.

JJ cool.gif
gwbischoff
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Nov 18 2007, 04:05 PM) *

Day 3

I decided to take a "chill" day, and stayed one more night in Weed. Last night I walked to a Mexican restaurant, then came back and had a glass of hot spiced wine that I made at home and I'm carrying with me. Well, that combo didn't "sit" well with me. So, I'm taking a chill day. Also, I checked my tires, air pressure seems fine. I can't figure out why the "thump test" is giving me a different sound. (I did this based on seeing a long haul trucker hit his tires with a rubber mallet for the same reason....)

I'm going to ride my E-bike around Weed and check it out.

JJ cool.gif


If I'd a known you were bringin' home made wine I would have helped you drive!

Good luck, enjoy the trip and have a Happy Thanksgiving.
DXSMac
Day 4 and 5

On Monday morning, Mt. Shasta had a light dusting of snow, but no snow on highways. I'm glad I waited until Monday to leave Weed. It was a beautiful day, partly cloudy, with sunshine. Made it through the construction area in Redding fine. CalTrans says Saturday northbound should be ok, but Sunday might not. Monday night I stayed in Patterson, Kit Fox RV park. Sacramento and Stockton just did not give me warm fuzzies about good RV parks. The wireless at Kit Fox was slow, might as well have been on dialup! Today (Tuesday), I arrived in Acton, went to dinner with my friend that I'm spending Thanksgiving with. Staying at Califorian RV Park. The wireless here is available only in the office, not at the RV's. Rats! Won't be checking email for the next few days.

JJ
Texasrvers
Yea! Glad to hear you made it. Have a great TG.
DXSMac
Ok, I'm on my way back now. I'm back in Patterson. I debated about taking a different route, but if I go off I-5, the roads are winding and my cat has issues (gets car sick). So, back on I-5, will probably stay at the same places I stayed on the way down.

I'm glad I did this. However, I have crossed off the list any potential visits to the Pasadena Rose parade. Driving my RV around Lancaster/Palmdale/Acton scared the crap out of me, so NO FREAKING WAY will I drive into LA.

However, I had a good time with my friend on Thanksgiving. We had a small turkey, which he cooked. Yams, salad, desert. Enough food without me being stuffed and feeling horrible. It was great!

I have come to the conclusion that if I attempt any long distance trips, my "limits" are 300 miles a day, and every third day is a "chill out" day. More than two days in a row I am too tired.

Gotta rethink this trip to Shanksville I want to do, it will take me a whole month to go up there and back!

JJ
BBear
DXSMac, I'm glad you had such a great time and I hope that you DON'T rethink your trip to Shanksville. You'll be able to complete that trip the same as you've done the one you're on now.

I don't know how much traveling you've done East of the Mississippi, but it's not exactly the same as west of it. I think you'd be really surprised at how much more miles you can put on in a day once you get through the mountains. And, Chicago is about the largest city that you'd be having to go around and that's really not that bad...I've done it in a motorhome, so if I can do it, anybody can. wink.gif
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