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Old 06-14-2016, 09:09 AM   #1
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Driving to FL in February

We're considering a trip to Florida in February towing our JayFeather Ultralite x20e. I've driven to Atlanta in a minivan in fall and spring and know there are mountains in Tenn. to go through. Does anyone have experience in an RV through that region at that time of year and, if so, comments to offer? Thanks much.
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Old 06-14-2016, 09:34 AM   #2
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You want to avoid Atlanta during rush hour if at all possible. I have found that 10 am or 3 pm is much better. If you can go through there during the wee hours like 2 am, that is even better. Plenty of RV parks along I 75 to stop for one night. Where are you going in Florida?
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Old 06-14-2016, 12:28 PM   #3
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I used I-65 out of Indianapolis and US-280 out of Birmingham back to I-75. No Atlanta and the hilly regions were much less severe.
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Old 06-14-2016, 01:30 PM   #4
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If you are planning on staying in one of the many Florida state parks in February, you may be using a Walmart parking lot over night. Most state parks in South Florida are booked like 11 months in advance. We were lucky over the last 2 years and got sites that someone cancelled that day... (on line bookings) The Key's are next to impossible, site size is a major issue and they will not allow you to park an RV/TT that is over the size limit for that site. Like most state park sites, 14 days is the max.

You can get into private camp sites $$$ and they are usually small sites that are very close together.

Good Luck,

Don
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Old 06-14-2016, 04:53 PM   #5
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I pulled our sunset trail 250RB to LaBelle, Florida the last week of January. Stayed 2 weeks and then came back. We went from Marion, IL, I57 to I24 to I75.
Weather was the big problem. Snow and ice on the way down for the first 250 miles from Marion, IL. We even put off our trip a day. I was watching Nashville TN weather on the internet and it was nasty.

Weather on the way back was even worse. I was down to 35 mph on the interstate at times and no where open to pull off. Tractor trailers had all the spots taken.

Monteagle Mountain was the only large pull and it wasn't bad and the weather was clear that far south.

Nashville sucked getting through. Road construction and tricky last minute signs. I ended up in a residential neighborhood on my way back after missing my temp exit in a big snowstorm. I didn't have any problem with Atlanta.

We stayed at a camping world campground south of Valdosta Ga on the way down, not a bad place for a quick over nighter. Just off the interstate and only $20.

This white knuckle experience is the reason I bought a second trailer to haul to Florida and leave there.
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Old 06-14-2016, 10:05 PM   #6
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FL in FEB Follow up

Thanks much for the comments on driving to FL in February. We were originally thinking of stopping in Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Tampa and Orlando during a 2-3 week vacation. But given the responses in this Forum so far, we might be changing plans.

My 2 main concerns were driving through mountainous areas that time of year, and the weather. We can rearrange schedules to avoid Atlanta rush hour, but avoiding the mountains might be difficult. Getting around the weather definitely would be difficult. However, I like the idea of getting by Atlanta on I-65 then US 280 out of Birmingham.

I guess we'll have to take our chances with unpredictable weather.

I haven't tried to book campsites for Feb., yet. All I know is I saw on an RV map that there seem to be plenty of places to stay. I don't know whether being in the north half of the state makes a difference in getting reservations this late in the year...

We don't make regular trips to FL, or I might consider a second trailer there permanently.

Thanks again to everyone for the comments,
John K
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:28 PM   #7
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The State Parks book up quick, but there's plenty of places to camp here in FL. You have also made good choices of cities to visit.
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Old 06-22-2016, 06:32 AM   #8
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Another thing to verify is if a particular Walmart allows overnight rv's. Many don't due to local regulations but many others do.
There is a web site that lists them. Be sure to check with the store manager before staying.
http://www.walmartlocator.com/no-park-walmarts/
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Old 06-22-2016, 09:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John K. View Post
Thanks much for the comments on driving to FL in February. We were originally thinking of stopping in Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Tampa and Orlando during a 2-3 week vacation. But given the responses in this Forum so far, we might be changing plans.

My 2 main concerns were driving through mountainous areas that time of year, and the weather. We can rearrange schedules to avoid Atlanta rush hour, but avoiding the mountains might be difficult. Getting around the weather definitely would be difficult. However, I like the idea of getting by Atlanta on I-65 then US 280 out of Birmingham.

I guess we'll have to take our chances with unpredictable weather.

I haven't tried to book campsites for Feb., yet. All I know is I saw on an RV map that there seem to be plenty of places to stay. I don't know whether being in the north half of the state makes a difference in getting reservations this late in the year...

We don't make regular trips to FL, or I might consider a second trailer there permanently.

Thanks again to everyone for the comments,
John K
The hills of TN are no big deal normally. However, the weather is what it is and you'll have to look at that when the time comes. As far as getting campsites in FL I've never found that to be an issue. Even most state parks have room for a few days. They do require reservations in FL state parks. There are literally thousands of private sites available all over FL.

I just randomly picked Little Talbot Island State Park in Jacksonville and checked February 2017 availability and it is currently completely empty for the entire month of February. You can have any site for as long as you want (I think there's a 14 day limit).

State parks in south FL tend to book up in winter. North FL not so much. It's pretty easy to go to any FL state park website and check availability.
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Old 06-22-2016, 09:48 AM   #10
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Be aware that Wekiva Springs will be closed. That might impact other camping areas in the Orlando area.
I would not wait too long.. I note that Blue Springs is filling and Hillsborough near Tampa are filling fast ( the latter nearly full).

There are lots of people camping in North Florida in Feb.. Last year we could not get in and we just had a tent..so off we crawled to state forests..no amenities.
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