We are now in Utah, after six days of driving between Fort Walton Beach, FL and – as I post – just oustside of Moab, Utah. That's about 2,000 miles of driving and almost all of it was done keeping our 330 Rule.
At least part of it.
To make up for the work we had to do videotaping and interviewing folks each day, we kept the mileage part of the rule – stopping each day after about 330 miles of travel. Keeping the 3:30PM quitting time each day would not have worked out as we didn't start driving some days until early afternoon.
We concede that March may not be the best time for such a trip as the warmest it got on any day was 72 degrees. Last night in Utah, it dipped down to 33 degrees. But we're not complaining, We're on the road and the road is to be experienced – and enjoyed – as it comes.
Even 50 mile an hour winds we had one night in Amarillo, Texas was part of the adventure – though the RV was being buffeted so much in the howling wind that Bo left his normal bed on the floor up front to come back and jump up in bed with us for reassurance that all was okay.
This trip is for business. But who says a business trip can't be fun?
We will be attending a big industry RV show called RVx in Salt Lake City all week. Leisure Travel Vans brought us out to do a meet and greet with the industry insiders who will be attending. We are also returning the Wonder RTB van they let us borrow for a review that we did on our YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel.
We'll also be doing a live report direct from the show this week at 3PM Eastern Time on Thursday March 14.
On the way out here to Utah, we mostly boondocked, staying in a Cracker Barrel restaurant and several Harvest Host locations. We'll be doing a video in a couple weeks all about Harvest Hosts and what a great resource it is for RVers. Harvest Hosts has over 700 wineries, farms, orchards, breweries and attractions where RVers can overnight for free. The only thing expected is to buy something the host produces, a bottle of wine, some produce, and admission fee to an attraction.
One of the Harvest Host places we overnighted was an alligator farm in Mississippi. That's right. An alligator farm, where gators are raised from hatchlings to 15 footers and visitors get an air boat ride in the swamp and a close up education on these ancient alpha predators, which can live for 100 years.
We also had a great time staying at a wonderful vineyard in Louisiana. We overnighted on a grassy hill overlooking the vineyard and had a free wine tasting the next day. Jennifer even was allowed to helped out with the bottling process.
I don't want to give too much away about our Harvest Host adventures until the video comes out. But I can say that because we are doing the video, Harvest Hosts are allowing our followers to get 15% off the cost of membership, which is $79 for the basic plan of 700 plus wineries, farms and attractions, $119 for the basic plus a list of more than 200 golf courses where members can also overnight. From our experience, we think it's a fantastic program. Just go to https://harvesthosts.com, select the plan you want and enter the coupon code RVLS to get the discount. This trip really convinced us about the value of this organization.
We also stayed in campgrounds, selecting a KOA in Amarillo so we could dump the black tank, fill up the fresh water tank and do the laundry. While there, we were offered a free steak dinner. Even a free ride to and from the Big Texan Steak Ranch and Brewery, which sent a stretch limo to pick us up right at our campsite. The chauffeur wore a cowboy hat, and his limo had imitation Long Horns attached to the hood.
With a Texas twang he called Jennifer “Ma'am” and me “Sir” and explained that the offer was indeed a free streak – a 72 ounce steak. The catch is you have to eat all of it, in one hour without getting up from the table or having any assistance from anyone else. If you get sick in the process and have to stop, you lose. If you can't do it in an hour, you lose.
And if you lose, you pay $72 for the monster steak.
We both passed on the offer, but enjoyed the experience of the restaurant, which is quite an Amarillo tradition, located right off I40 and the nearby Route 66.
We could have flown out here to Utah in just a few hours. Instead, we took six days by RV. And every mile was enjoyable. It's like a movie passing by right outside the windshield. We watched the palm trees of Florida give way to the swamps of the Mississippi, low country, then the piney woods of Northern Louisiana, followed by the Texas range country, the mesa country of New Mexico and the spectacular mountains of Utah.
We stopped to find fitness places to work out in the mornings, dog parks to let Bo stretch his legs in the afternoons and roadside historical markers to learn about the areas we were passing through. We prepared our meals in the RV and, yes, I admit, on more than a couple of times I found a rest area or roadside park to pull over and take a quick cat nap.
In Salt Lake City, we'll be leaving Bo for four days. He's staying with a family that we found on Rover.com while we'll be working at the RV show. They promise to send us daily photos of Bo, playing with their pup and enjoying their fenced in back yard.
Today, the day before the show, we're going to hang out in Arches National Park before driving up to Salt Lake City on Monday.
We truly love the RV Lifestyle. And we've found that whenever we can make the time work for us, RV travel will always be our preferred way of getting there, even if just 330 miles at a time.
See you down the road.