Dan and I have known since last year that we wanted to shake things up a bit, but we hadn’t settled on what that meant. Especially with the plague.
In late 2020 we finally settled on a trip to Mexico. We planned to visit San Miguel de Allende for a month or so – and then move there for a year. It was settled; we even had a house picked out near the city center.
Mexico, which had been doing very well, was hit badly by the virus. In fact, they are still struggling. We decided a move there was not right for us (or for them.)
Positive Peer Pressure
Then our friends who live in an RV (Crazy Family Adventure) suggested we get an RV and hang with them! The plan was to hit Alaska for the summer.
It took a few weeks (some of that time was just “realigning” our plans about Mexico) but we were game! Let’s do this!
Since then, we’ve come to realize that the Canadian borders probably will not open this year…so we’ve revamped our travel plans yet again. But – we’re committed to doing it in an RV.
I share this map above with some trepidation. Plans change, especially when we’re talking 9 months out and while traveling with friends to several locations…but plans cannot be “broken” unless they are first made, right?
Our first extended stop will be in Colorado, in Fort Collins and Denver. Our intention is to stay here about 3-ish weeks, so that we can snowboard at a few different resorts. Snowboarding is our passion and we missed out last year, so we want to make up for it.
After that? Colorado Springs for a bit…then West to Utah. We want to spend about a month there. We’ll visit the Mighty 5, plus a few other parks like Grand Staircase and Lake Powell.
After Utah, things get much more up in the air. Dan’s brother lives in LA, so we thought it would be fun to visit Palm Springs and then LA…maybe Yosemite and Napa…and the glorious parks in Oregon and Washington.
My favorite part of the globe is the Yellowstone/Grand Teton so that’s another stop on the list. I’m very excited to share this region with the boys. Last we were there Cooper was only one year old, and Elliot was just a figment.
We have so many National Parks on our wish list; we’re following a make-shift West Coast National Parks trail. I do worry about crowds, and our ability to really enjoy the natural beauty of the area with so many others there also.
Which leads me to another topic…
Dan installed 840W of solar on our RV, with 2 inverters that allow us to “plug in” to an outlet and charge our appliances and electronics just like we were hooked up at a camp site.
This means that we have everything we need to dry camp, or boondock. And that allows us to avoid the crowds and overnight in areas of Mother Nature that breathtaking and unmatched.
Out West you can boondock on any BLM Land without issue. That stands for Bureau of Land Management. In the map above, all the land in yellow is BLM Land. (Orange is Indian Reservation Land, purple is National Parks, light green is US Forest).
End of 2021
We’ll wrap up the year by heading back east to New Jersey to visit Dan’s family – taking them with us on a little fall side journey to Vermont. Then, we’ll head back to Atlanta for the holidays.
What About 365 Atlanta Traveler
We’re on the move, but the website not going anywhere! You can’t get rid of us that easily!
I know that there will be things happening here in Atlanta and the Southeast that need to be covered. Luckily we have three AMAZING women who will still be covering that for you. Sue, Kate and Maria will be holding down the fort on this side of the country while I am gone.
My hope is to also write about the places we visit on the West Coast. I want to be realistic about my ability to write and RV (and parent, homeschool, work, etc) but I can’t imagine seeing the West Coast and not sharing it with you!
We’ll be on social media more often, for sure. And I’ll share new posts with you in the newsletter so that you, too, can make plans to visit these wild Western lands when you feel ready.
About the RV
As you know, we rented a few RVs in 2019. We took a Class C to Florida for a bit, and then pulled a small travel trailer to Montana and South Dakota for a few weeks. That experience was invaluable.
When it came to purchasing an RV, we knew we wanted a fifth-wheel. It allows us to go larger while giving us more control on the road.
Once again we went to Craig and Bryanna from Crazy Family Adventure for some advice. They have a Keystone and highly recommended it. As I’ve said before, we trust them implicitly but we also wanted to do our own research. We looked at dozens and dozens of campers, and had to agree that the Keystone brand was one of the highest quality RVs and a great value.
We settled on the Keystone Montana High Country 362RD. This floor plan was ideal for us because it gives the boys their own space – more than just a room with a bed. It’s like a small apartment with seating for four (including a fold-out bed for times that our adult kids fly in to visit us on the road), a TV and gaming center, desks, and a half-bath.
This does mean that the main living area is a little smaller, but it still includes a dining area, a snuggling sofa, a fireplace and TV, and a full kitchen with an island. I’m totally OK with a smaller main area, since that “forces” us outside even more.
The main bathroom (with a shower) and the master bedroom are at the front of the RV. We’ve also added a desk here for working, so that we can shut the door if we have to be on a conference call for work.
I’m making a few aesthetic changes, so when they are done (right before we hit the road) I’ll be sure to share a video on Facebook.
When Do You Leave?
I’m writing this on a Wednesday evening…and the countdown is 9 days. Our plan is pull out on March 19, 2021!
On our way to Colorado, our first stop will be with family in Tishomingo, MS, on the lake near the state park. After that, it’s I70 West, all the way to Denver.
Lesli, Dan and Family
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