Our 2016 plans: Counter clockwise around the eastern half of the US and a bit of Canada

So in 2015, despite our numerous mechanical delays, we generally followed the plan we had laid out a year in advance of our start: Head to Key West, and then begin a clockwise circuit of the US, following the season, with forays, dips, and zags into the interior states along the way.  Our bus problems cut our RVing down to eight months or so, and we had eliminate New England and the upper midwest from that original plan.  If you looked at our Where Are We Now page near the end of the year, then you know the eventual route and stopping points looked like this:

This year we will try a variation on the same theme of a grand circle following the seasons, but going in the other direction.  Meaning this spring we work our way out of Florida and up the east coast all the way to Maine, and perhaps parts of Canada.  In the summer we will meander west at least as far as Wisconsin if not further, probably cutting across southern Ontario from New York to Michigan.  In the fall we will work our way back southeast to once again winter in Florida.  Following the sequenced points from “A” in red to “g” in violet, it might look something like this:

The other significant change we are making from last year’s planning method is that we will go slower, making fewer stops but spending longer in each one.  The 91 different places in the course of 244 days of RVing in 2015 became rather tiring.  So this year, rather than that less than three day average per stop, we are aiming for closer to a week. The math works out something like this:  Once we leave Key West it will take us six or seven weeks to visit all of our family and friends in the state as we head north, but if we leave Florida in early May and return in late November, that gives us 27 weeks.  During that time we plan to hit 23 states, give or take, with four or so repeated due to geography and the circular nature of our route.  That works out to exactly one week per state stop. Perfect!

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I’m in full on route planning mode, with a little help from my friends Cheap Scotch and Expensive Cat.

Now, I have not even accounted for Canada in that, so like I said, things will flex and shift and change and alter and etc, but in very loose terms, we think it will go something like this:

  • February: Florida (Key West)
  • March: Florida (Key West, Middle Keys, Miami, Coral Springs, Venice)
  • April: Florida (Inverness, Mount Dora, Cedar Key, Gainesville, Gamble Rogers)
  • May: Georgia (Savannah, Statesboro), South Carolina, North Carolina (Wilmington), Virginia (Norfolk, Shenandoah), Maryland (Annapolis)
  • June: Delaware, Pennsylvania, New York (NYC), New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island
  • July: Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Canada (southern New Brunswick, perhaps Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia)
  • August: Vermont, Canada (southern Quebec) New York (Finger Lakes, Up State, Niagara Falls), Canada (southern Ontario)
  • September: Michigan (Lower, Upper Peninsula), Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois
  • October: Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, North Carolina (Asheville), Georgia (Atlanta)
  • November: Alabama (Gulf Shores), Florida (Panhandle, Central, Coral Springs, Venice)

The big wild cards are those Canada side trips in italics.  Maybe we end up dropping some of that, or shortening stays in some of the states, or skipping others entirely.  But for now we are enjoying even the idea of all this; the planning is part of the fun.

We are putting out this concept, rather more detailed than what we started with in 2015, in the hopes that some of our family, friends, and online RV acquaintances might consider meeting up with us along the way.  As a minimum, this will hopefully give some of you a heads up as to when we will be pulling into your driveways.  And as always, we are always open to suggestions, especially those off the beaten path sites, food and beverage must taste places, and bargains.

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9 thoughts on “Our 2016 plans: Counter clockwise around the eastern half of the US and a bit of Canada

  1. Maybe we’ll finally cross paths next November in the Florida Panhandle! Looks like you have a fun year mapped out. We’re just now planning our trip back west when we leave Florida in late March. All the way back to Lopez Island for the summer for us…..

  2. Kay and I will be at Tuxburypond RV Resort when you are in New England in July. Give us a shout when you are in the area. We would love to connect. We are planning to go full time RVing in October when I retire.

    Russ and Kay

      • Boston has a lot of history, culture, dining and a nice aquarium. It is better to park outside the city and use public transportation. Only NYC drivers are worse than Boston drivers. Cape Cod is nice if you like the seashore. Personally, I like Maine and New Hampshire. Moosehead Lake is a great destination. Acadia National Park is a great trip too.

  3. Pingback: 16 Months Fulltiming, April 2016 Report | Shell On Wheels

  4. Pingback: And we made it! Maine Part 1: Poland Spring & LA | Shell On Wheels

  5. Pingback: Out of New England into New York: Two stops as we pass through the Adirondacks. | Shell On Wheels

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