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Old 04-29-2016, 08:29 AM   #1
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Full Time living in your area?

Starting a new thread asking: In the area you live, what are the rv parks, trailer parks, BLM land, etc that full timers can rent/set up on to live legally? From what I've found, especially around cities, there are often few to no places for full timers to set up legally, which is why many people stealth boondock and move around every night.

My area: Hampton Roads, VA (Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Portsmouth).
There are a few commercial campgrounds, but all are geared towards vacation campers and a few full timers that are willing to pay high monthly site rent. Prices aren't too bad in the winter months, but during the tourist season the prices go up significantly and the parks get full. Unless you own land in the farming areas of these cities, you can't live in an rv full time. There are some trailer parks in each city, but most are not in the safest parts of town and they are quickly disappearing as developers buy them up to build huge apartment complexes. The lack of affordable housing for the "working poor" is huge around here.
Stealth camping is hard too. You have to constantly move to avoid drawing attention of the police. Easier in a low profile van, but forget about it in a skoolie or rv, they just stick out too much.
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Old 04-29-2016, 08:56 AM   #2
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I think we're in a similar situation in the Atlanta area. There are certainly some state parks and a few commercial RV parks, but they are going to be pricey. There are some trailer parks once you look outside the perimeter, but I haven't looked into putting an RV in a trailer park. Is that commonly done? There's a military campground just north of me that has reasonable monthly rates - but of course, you would have to be military (active or retired) to stay there, and I doubt you could stay very long term.
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Old 04-29-2016, 09:08 AM   #3
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Check out BLM (Bureau of Land Management), Corp of Engineers Land and state parks. Many allow free to moderately priced unrestricted camping.
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Old 04-29-2016, 10:11 AM   #4
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I think we're in a similar situation in the Atlanta area. There are certainly some state parks and a few commercial RV parks, but they are going to be pricey. There are some trailer parks once you look outside the perimeter, but I haven't looked into putting an RV in a trailer park. Is that commonly done? There's a military campground just north of me that has reasonable monthly rates - but of course, you would have to be military (active or retired) to stay there, and I doubt you could stay very long term.
Hampton Roads, VA: I see rv's "permanently" mounted in the trailer parks around here. There are nice campgrounds at several of the bases here too, but I don't know the time limits and you do have to be active or retired military to be able to use them.
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Old 04-29-2016, 10:36 AM   #5
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Here in the mountains of Oregon there are bazillions of dead end logging roads. The timber companies are putting up a lot of gates on roads to stop access, but there's basically no way to gate all the roads and there's no way to patrol them all. Generally speaking as long as you're respectful to the land and don't over use one area you'll be ok. If someone comes by and asks you to move, just crank up and drive a few miles and you'll be on a different timber companies land.
There are official camp sites along just about any river. They do fill up during the summer but it's not that hard to find a space if you're not restricted to weekends. These are usually headwaters of rivers that more closely resemble creeks this high up in the mountains. The camp sites I think are about $5 or $7 per night, and there are limits to the number of days you can stay at one camp.
I prefer to find a shady wide spot in a logging road by a creek. There's lots of them. Just remember to park as far out of the way as possible in case logging trucks happen to come by while you're there.
Cities, forget about it. Maybe you can get away with stealth camping for a night before someone complains. The Walmart apparently allows 7 hours in their parking lot in town. It is nice to use some real porcelain thrones once in a while.
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Old 04-29-2016, 01:13 PM   #6
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Thanks Robin. I started this thread to see what's available in or near cities for those that full time but still have to work every day. I suspect the options will be limited throughout the U.S., but maybe there will be a few cities that have some cost effective options for full timers. It's cool that in the west there are millions of acres of public access land that you can camp on for free. The east coast isn't so lucky, probably because it was settled first and the west has always been "wild and open", not to mention all the desert in the west that has no farming value or water, so I guess they figure if you're brave enough to boondock on it then have at it.
I'm interested to see what other feedback we get from other cities/localities around the country.
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Old 04-29-2016, 02:18 PM   #7
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Bad part of Skoolies? We're neither fish nor fowl. According to most RV parks, if it's over 10 years old, no parking allowed. Plus, a Skoolie isn't an RV, according to them, despite what the title may say. Billings has an ordinance that prohibits camping on city streets, so that leaves anything outside of the city limits fair game. And, if you're parked on private property, that, too, is fair game.

The TRUE irony? KOA has it's corporate HQ, as well as KOA #1 here in town. The rates they set for in-season are absolutely obscene. The closest places to Billings that offer unlimited FREE parking are 50 miles away; one is on the Crow Nation reservation, the other is on the banks of the Musselshell River, where it routinely floods EVERY YEAR.
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Old 04-29-2016, 04:00 PM   #8
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The closest places to Billings that offer unlimited FREE parking are 50 miles away; one is on the Crow Nation reservation,
I would like to know more... is this the res to the south east of Billings? I was in Billings last summer for the BMW MOA rally and we passed through what I think was a crow res on the way there and back. I'd be game for parking on that res for free... I particularly enjoyed the town of Lodge Grass aka Greasy Grass...
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Old 04-29-2016, 06:24 PM   #9
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Actually, it's dead center on the Res. It's the Casino, just off I-90 to the north.
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Old 04-29-2016, 06:33 PM   #10
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I previously lived in the capitol city and the only place I ever saw a bus/RV was in a really crappy looking old trailer park. Here buses are considered cool, but they generally don't want to rent a spot in town to someone that lives in a bus.
You are talking about parking hooked up to facilities, possibly driving a second car to work? At some point the savings of living in a bus start to fade.
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Old 05-03-2016, 12:42 PM   #11
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Hi there I am looking for places in Bar Harbor Maine to park this bus for the summer up there. I am having to jump through a lot of hoops with a local campground there but trying my best. I am new to the Skoolie world and to this site. My boyfriend and I are almost finished with construction on our 91 flat nose blue bird. We have never done anything like this before but our heart and minds are in the right place I believe. Any advice would help ;)
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Old 05-03-2016, 02:20 PM   #12
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BigBird, you did your whole conversion without us? That's kind of cruel unless you have lots of pics. We're a very visual group.

Most fishing towns have seasonal housing/parking for the great influx of workers during the fishing season and through the summer months. On the other hand I'm speaking from the left coast and have never been to Maine. It's probably to late for you to be a campground host.
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Old 05-03-2016, 03:09 PM   #13
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Hi there I am looking for places in Bar Harbor Maine to park this bus for the summer up there. I am having to jump through a lot of hoops with a local campground there but trying my best. I am new to the Skoolie world and to this site. My boyfriend and I are almost finished with construction on our 91 flat nose blue bird. We have never done anything like this before but our heart and minds are in the right place I believe. Any advice would help ;)
Are there any state or national park campgrounds you can use?
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Old 05-03-2016, 04:12 PM   #14
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Actually, it's dead center on the Res. It's the Casino, just off I-90 to the north.
Damn, and here I am hoping for some big empty field out in the middle of nowhere on the res. No casino parking for this guy... I'll just have to look up some friends on the res instead....
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Old 05-03-2016, 06:05 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by dgorila1 View Post
Starting a new thread asking: In the area you live, what are the rv parks, trailer parks, BLM land, etc that full timers can rent/set up on to live legally? From what I've found, especially around cities, there are often few to no places for full timers to set up legally, which is why many people stealth boondock and move around every night.

My area: Hampton Roads, VA (Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Portsmouth).
There are a few commercial campgrounds, but all are geared towards vacation campers and a few full timers that are willing to pay high monthly site rent. Prices aren't too bad in the winter months, but during the tourist season the prices go up significantly and the parks get full. Unless you own land in the farming areas of these cities, you can't live in an rv full time. There are some trailer parks in each city, but most are not in the safest parts of town and they are quickly disappearing as developers buy them up to build huge apartment complexes. The lack of affordable housing for the "working poor" is huge around here.
Stealth camping is hard too. You have to constantly move to avoid drawing attention of the police. Easier in a low profile van, but forget about it in a skoolie or rv, they just stick out too much.
Just down south of you around Emerald Isle/cape carteret, n.c. are several full time RV parks that can do exactly what your wanting. One is directly on the most popular beach access,(several in between) and another is still close to the water but don't have to deal with the beach traffic near as much. I don't know any specifics (money,rules?) i dont know what kind of work you do?
But I got out of the corps in 96 and have never had to worry about work in construction on the bases MCAS cherry point,MCB camp lejeune,MCAS new river and my wife of 17 yrs has had a tough time getting a good job after being a stay at home mom and residential architect didn't work,traveling home inspector didn't pay, real estate agent as the bottom dropped a while back and now a MED LAB tech. There is plenty of hospital position's within driving distance.
PM me if you want more info. I can give place names and phone info. Even if you want to come down for the weekend to check things out.
I can show you around but need a little notice for that cause I usually work 6-days a week.
More than happy to help.
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Old 05-03-2016, 08:00 PM   #16
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Just down south of you around Emerald Isle/cape carteret, n.c. are several full time RV parks that can do exactly what your wanting. One is directly on the most popular beach access,(several in between) and another is still close to the water but don't have to deal with the beach traffic near as much. I don't know any specifics (money,rules?) i dont know what kind of work you do?
But I got out of the corps in 96 and have never had to worry about work in construction on the bases MCAS cherry point,MCB camp lejeune,MCAS new river and my wife of 17 yrs has had a tough time getting a good job after being a stay at home mom and residential architect didn't work,traveling home inspector didn't pay, real estate agent as the bottom dropped a while back and now a MED LAB tech. There is plenty of hospital position's within driving distance.
PM me if you want more info. I can give place names and phone info. Even if you want to come down for the weekend to check things out.
I can show you around but need a little notice for that cause I usually work 6-days a week.
More than happy to help.
Cool, thanks for the info and offer. My wife and I are both in the med field and have good jobs in this area for now. We're in a sticks and bricks for another 6 years at least, until my kid gets out of school. After that all bets are off. I tried to talk the wife into travel nursing but she won't go for it She doesn't have the same gypsy gene I do.
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Old 05-03-2016, 09:20 PM   #17
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No there are quite an influx of pics that I am going to try and load soon and yes I have Acadia National Park on the island and close to the town looking into some of those campgrounds as we speak thank you for your replies. Gratitudes
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Old 05-04-2016, 06:31 PM   #18
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Cool, thanks for the info and offer. My wife and I are both in the med field and have good jobs in this area for now. We're in a sticks and bricks for another 6 years at least, until my kid gets out of school. After that all bets are off. I tried to talk the wife into travel nursing but she won't go for it She doesn't have the same gypsy gene I do.
My wife is all for the traveling lab tech jobs but wants more experience before hand and i can do almost anything that requires building up are tearing down.We are in the same boat with the kids but mine are 15&16 and both have plans/have pushed the idea for college.
And our dreams are to move home to texas,find a piece of land in between mine and her family which is spread from outside of Dallas down to CORPUS CHRISTIE and live in the bus while I/we build a house.
I built my bus as a family camper and now my boys are starting to outgrow there beds so that will have to be renovated after they quit hanging out with us but that's just another project to piddle with on my weekend's off.
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Old 06-19-2016, 10:03 PM   #19
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This is one of the issues we're trying to figure out before we build a skoolie. Living in Phoenix, AZ camping isn't readily available. Lots of RV & trailer parks around, but we haven't looked into rules and regulations yet....
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Old 10-14-2016, 09:10 AM   #20
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Here in the Denver area there is nowhere to park a bus or RV for free besides Walmart for 24hrs. A lot of homeless people are parking in the industrial areas or by construction sites, they usually get run off in a week or so, these are not nice places that you would want to stay anyway.

When I was young I lived in Boulder every summer we had tons of hippies come thru with buses they would park all over get hassled by the cops with in a day or two and look for places that were safe to park.
There was one scuzzy trailer park called “The Dog Patch” that would rent them cheap places to park and hook into utilities. There was also a couple of junk yards that would take broken down bus dwellers in.
Many of them would also park in the near by national forest and would receive a 14 day warning in a few days.

In the Denver area space is tight and buses take up space, they are also hard to lay low with. You could find undesirable places on the outskirts of the city that do not care but they are undesirable places.
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