The Transnistria parliament building with a statue of Lenin out front. In the city of Tiraspol, Transnistria. Photo taken December 9, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Tiraspol, Transnistria...the country that doesn't exist.

Where are they going next? Northern Moldova. Arrive December 11th.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Border to border boondocking challenge

Had a simply fantastic long weekend away in Ottawa area. It was too short of course, and next time we'll plan a little more time to be able to spend with family and friends. But overall, we did what we planned to do and now we can get back to our RV trip to Mexico.

This morning, we flew from Ottawa to Regina with a connection in Toronto.

I'm actually writing this on the plane...somewhere over Lake Superior at 41,000 feet.

41,000 feet is pretty high up!

That's our shadow on the clouds way below. We had a neat halo around us!


We like flying with Westjet. They let their people have a sense of humour. On the first flight this morning, the flight attendant is reading out the safety stuff and at the end, she says "And if you have any questions or comments, please keep them to yourself. It's far too early for that nonsense".

Too funny. Then when we arrived at Toronto 10 minutes early, she got on the speaker and said that it was entirely due to the flight attendants that we were early.

So...Sherman (our motorhome) is waiting for us at Moose Jaw, and since we arrive there around 12:30pm we're going to get some pavement behind us. Hoping to cross the border to North Dakota today. No idea where we'll end up tonight.

Which brings us to our border to border boondocking challenge.

We plan on crossing into Mexico around October 19th...two weeks from now. We'll be traveling every single day, but without much of a plan as to the next day's destination.

Now, you might know that many RV'ers overnight at Walmart when they're on a destination trip and of course we've done that before ourselves. But what we've learned over the last 8 years is that 99% of the time there is a better choice available. In fact, there are usually a wide variety of better choices available.

We're going to seek out the best free and cheap (under $10 per night) campsites that we can find over the next two weeks. They may be municipal campgrounds, they may be in National Parks, or they may be off a dirt road in a National Forest or on BLM land. Who knows? But we do know that there won't be any Walmarts for us.

We're doing a pretty direct North South route and we want to do it without going out of our way too much.

Also, we are not activating our Verizon mi-fi for this two weeks. Sorry Verizon, I can't justify $60 for 3 GB's of data over two weeks, so you get no money from us this time around! Instead, we'll find unsecured wi-fi connections along the way. This may mean that our normal first thing in the morning blog post will be late some days, but so be it.

So...hoping you'll check in every day to see how we're doing and where we ended up spending the night. We're looking forward to finding that out ourselves!


34 comments:

  1. If you happen to be going thru Wyoming on Highway 191. There are some really good free spots and $10 spots just off the highway. Check out our blog post from 2013. http://metamorphosisroad.blogspot.com/2013/07/excellent-boondocking-on-green-river.html

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    1. Thanks for the suggestions Hans but we won't be going through Wyoming on our way done. It is possible that we may come back up through that area in April so we will try to remember that and check out some of those spots if they are on our route back.

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  2. This is a great challenge and I'll definitely be checking to see how you do it. I have absolutely no doubt that you will. Such is your reputation!

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    1. I am pretty sure that we won't have any problems finding spots, we have never had any issues in the past so this shouldn't be that much different other than we will be on the move more often.

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  3. Good luck with your challenge. It will be interesting to see where you land each day.

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    1. Thanks Paul and Marsha. We are looking forward to seeing where we end up each day too. :-)

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  4. Count me in!
    Speaking for myself, I find the UltimateCG app quite useful.

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    1. So far we really like the Ultimate CG app. There are also a couple of other sites that seem fairly useful too.

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  5. This is going to be very good reading!

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  6. I was telling Steve about your coast-to-coast boondocking challenge and he said "If anyone can do it, they can!

    We hope you have perfect weather and a very safe trip. Will be following along!

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    1. Not coast to coast but border to border, Grace, there's no coasts around here. ;-)

      So far the weather is looking promising. Yesterday was pretty dreary though.

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    2. Yes, I didn't think of border to border. That's definitely a better description.

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  7. Kathy and I have spent more time in Flying Js tucked back amongst the truckers than at Walmarts. However if you write up your blog posts and stop at coffee shops or fast food outlets they pretty much all offer free WiFi today. They are unsecured but if you are stopping for a snack you should be posted before you finish consuming it.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

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    1. I know a lot of people like Flying J's and other truck stops but that is one place we will never boondock at, just way to noisy for us. We would take a Walmart over that, I'm afraid. Our whole challenge though it to show people that there are much nicer places to park overnight than, truck stops, Walmarts.

      We don't normally have any problems finding unsecured WiFi especially with our WiFi extender. Normally we don't even have to go in to buy anything because we have our motorhome with us, we just stop and sit down at the table to have a snack. We usually find the best place to get internet is at the public library.

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  8. Southest Airlines is the same way. American (which I'm flying tomorrow) is as dry as a bone. Short with answers and no smiles.

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    1. American sounds more like Air Canada, although we had no problems with them on our two flights to Ottawa and they very pleasant and big smiles.

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  9. We will be right along with you.
    We (Suzie) likes the 24 hour Walmarts because she feels more secure. But then again we always look for options.
    Travel safe and enjoy the trip as I now you will.

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    1. I think that is probably why so many people stay at Walmarts because they know that they have the security. We just don't like the crowds or the noise that goes with them and we have found so many other great places and we have never had a problem or felt unsecure. Everyone has to do what they feel is best for them though.

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  10. Should be an interesting two weeks. I'll be reading.

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    1. We are so looking forward to it! :-)

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  11. Love following your adventure. We're heading South right now too, Arizona hoteling as opposed to boon docking lol. Saw our first snow south of the border - go figure.

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    1. Doesn't matter that you are hoteling it, just the fact that you are out there traveling is good enough. Hope you have a great time Ryshia, and the weather will improve as you head south. :-)

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  12. Wal-mart is an absolute last option for us ... we've only overnighted there twice, once in Bozeman MT and once in Nova Scotia. Like you, we know there are far better places to stop for the night without spending a bucket o' bucks! That being said, good luck to you! I'll check with you when we get back from our overseas trip!!!!

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    1. Yes, Walmarts are a last resort to us as well and places that we have stayed at several years ago but have since found that there are even better places.

      Have a great time on your overseas trip!

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  13. I'm sure you won't be coming through Kansas City MO but if you do, you're welcome to dock on our acreage! (Did I say that right?)

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    1. Sorry Kay but we won't be headed that far east but thank you for the offer. And, you you said that just fine. :-)

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  14. Rather than spend the time looking for a place, because we travel long distances each day as we head south, we choose to spend the first few nights at a Walmart along the way. That way I get to purchase the only able to buy in the USA items at the same time. It's a win/win for us. However we do switch to boondocking as we get into Nevada.

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    1. We don't normally spend very much time searching for our spots, Kevin has a couple of sites that he will use and then he checks them out on google street view to make sure they look suitable for us and then just plugs the co-ordinates into the GPS. The odd time it doesn't work out and then we will just happen to spot a something along the way. We don't waste time or money driving around looking that is for sure. It is always nice though to stock up while at the Walmart. :-)

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    2. The other thing is that we are close to 60 feet long when towing. As we travel we always keep and eye out for new sites for another year.

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  15. I stayed at three Walmarts this summer and all three stays were miserable experiences, thanks to trucks parking way too close and making noise all night. Although finding good boondocking sites takes MUCH more time, a good sleep is worth it. Looking forward to your publishing of the Kevin&Ruth CanMex Boondocking Corridor!

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    1. That's generally why we don't stay at them, just too noisy for us, what with the street cleaner going around in the middle of the night and trucks running all the time and other RVers running their generators, it just isn't for us. It doesn't always take a lot more time finding other good locations, at least it doesn't seem to take Kevin very long to find something. I guess we will find out as we venture further on.

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