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Old 06-25-2019, 05:13 PM   #1
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Ambitious trip we're planning

Here's the motor home trip we're planning. Expecting it to take all of August and may roll in to first half of Sept. We figure that if we're going to do this, we need to do it while we still can...our clocks are ticking rapidly.

On or about Aug. 1st., we're heading the Axis north, to towards Kentucky and West Virginia. We'll sight-see and hang out in those states for a week or so. Then, head up to upstate NY and work our way up and over in to Nova Scotia via Canada's New Brunswick province. Expecting to spend 3-4 weeks in and around Nova Scotia, and take in both Prince Edward Island and the Cape Breton area, locations we missed last time we were up in NS, about 15 yrs ago.

Heading home, hopefully,we'll be starting out on the ferry (that should be running again by then), that runs between Yarmouth, NS and Bar Harbor, ME. Fares for the ferry ain't cheap. Cost for 2 adults and our Axis are in the $500. range, but it will cut off a couple days travel and is an adventure in itself. Once back on US soil, we'll work our way back to FL, over a period of a week to 10 days. If the ferry isn't an option, we'll drive back thru New Brunswick and back in to the US either thru Maine or upstate NY.

So, at this point, that's the plan. We both have a couple of Dr appt's to reschedule. Louie, hopefully, will be able to go with us...he's always wanted to see eastern Canada. Stuck out tongue winking eye

Obviously this time frame falls within our hurricane season, so we'll batten down everything here and come back to whatever's left, if hurricane(s) hit while we're gone. We'll try to use down what's in our freezers between now and time we leave. But we may have to ask one of our sons to come clean out anything that might be left, so it doesn't spoil and ruin the freezers.

So, that's it! Hopefully all this will come to pass, as expected.

Chris & Randy
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Old 06-25-2019, 05:50 PM   #2
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Sounds like a great trip. We did our first trip from Florida to Nova Scotia over 10 years ago and liked it so much we bought a condo here. We just made the trip again in our Axis in May and will return in October.

On our trips up and down the coast, we stay off of I95 as much as we can. Our route takes us up the Florida turnpike and 175 into Georgia and at Macon we head up US29 and work our way up to Greenville and Asheville. Both are great places to stop for a day or two. Then we try to spend a few days in the Smokeyís along the Blue Ridge Parkway before heading up I81 and I78 to NY. If you are heading up to Boston to hit I95 you can head a little North to I84 to cross the Hudson. In Maine, we head NE on Maine 9 and cross the border at St Stephens. You can also make a side trip there to US1 and Arcadia NP.

Just across the border into Canada is a beautiful little village of St Andrews with a campground right on the water within walking distance of the beautiful seaside town.

You mentioned the ferry, there is a second much cheaper ferry from St John (an hour or so from the border) and Digby in Nova Scotia. It only costs about $200 US and takes 2 hours. When you figure the extra time on the Yarmouth Ferry, while it saves you miles, it doesnít save u much time - if any. Make sure you stop in Annapolis Royal. It is a beautiful little town - oldest in Nova Scotia - with a vibrant arts scene. Worth a day and thereís a nice campground outside of town on the water.

Have a great time,
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Old 06-25-2019, 06:14 PM   #3
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I agree: it sounds like a great way to use up August!
Have fun, take lots of pictures, and make lots and lots of great memories!

... And if you happen to get near Grahamsville, NY...
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Old 06-25-2019, 09:10 PM   #4
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Oneilkeys: Thank you for your informative reply. I printed it out and we'll take it along. We take things slow and easy, avoid Interstates, look for back roads and forgotten highways and stop to 'smell the roses' frequently when we travel. Retirement affords you those options, when you don't have to meet deadlines and keep schedules! Thanks again!
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Old 06-25-2019, 11:01 PM   #5
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I'm expecting you to share photos as you go. Are you going to start an Instagram account or something for us to join you vicariously?
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Old 06-25-2019, 11:49 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Oldchief View Post
Oneilkeys: Thank you for your informative reply. I printed it out and we'll take it along. We take things slow and easy, avoid Interstates, look for back roads and forgotten highways and stop to 'smell the roses' frequently when we travel. Retirement affords you those options, when you don't have to meet deadlines and keep schedules! Thanks again!
Youíre right. Retirement is great and we have been enjoying it for 14 years and well over 100,000 miles including two trips to Alaska. If you enjoy your trip to Canada (and I am sure you will), think about the AlCan highway to Alaska in your future. Itís fantastic. I travelled all over the world with the USAF for 25 years and there is noting like the trip thru Yellowstone, Glacier and up thru Banff and then up the AlCan.
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Old 06-26-2019, 12:45 AM   #7
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Having just about completed a 10 day trip to South Dakota, I offer you one piece of advice I learned on this trip.
TAKE YOUR TIME!!!
Iíve found, for me, a 5 hour per day drive is all I wish to take. Any more than that becomes a chore. Stop and smell the roses.
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Old 06-26-2019, 02:36 AM   #8
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Hey, OldChief, had been wondering about you. We missed you at the spring rally, and haven't yet heard that you will be joining us in St Augustine in October.

Sounds like a great trip you have planned. Oneilkeys made some great suggestions. We did a similar path back from PEI and NS in 2017. We skipped the ferry after we learned the cost for our Vegas and toad, and how far ahead we had to be in place and did a drive around instead.

Try not to miss Hopewell Rocks in NS. Some of the highest tides in the world there, around 50 feet! We enjoyed Acadia Natl Park and Cadillac Mountain from Timberland Acres in Trenton, ME.

In NS, we did Donelda's Puffin tour from Englishtown and really enjoyed that. Had a frustrating experience in Halifax, and would suggest there are better places to spend your time. We went to Peggy's Cove with our toad, wouldn't suggest taking the coach there.

We also enjoyed St Stephens, and stayed at that same waterfront campground. Asked a local shopkeeper where was a good place to eat in town. She hesitated, then said "My place!" So I asked her what time she was serving. She gave me a weird look for a moment until she realized I was kidding!
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Old 06-26-2019, 11:55 AM   #9
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Mr Sunshine, thanks for the suggestions. We hope to be at the St. Aug rally in Oct.
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Old 06-27-2019, 04:57 PM   #10
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Just saw some recent news on the Maine to Nova Scotia that you might be interested in. As in 21 June, the ferry from Maine is not expected to start service until after 18 July. The apparently are having some problem with certification of the terminal in Maine and one article questioned whether it would be solved this summer. You can check on any later developments and make reservations at the site below. We could not get a reservation for our Axis on the St John ferry for the day and time we wanted trying a week in advance. They only take so many large vehicles and a lot of tractor trailers use the service.

https://www.ferries.ca/
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Old 06-27-2019, 05:15 PM   #11
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I read same thing. Also saw several comments on both ferry services, Bar Harbor Harbor/Yarmouth & St. John/ Digby, that recommended forgoing the ferries and just driving around. Said time saved using ferries wasnít all that much, that both were expensive and scenery driving around was preferable to staring at open water. So, weíve about decided to skip ferries. Thankfully, time isnít a factor for us anymore.
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Old 06-27-2019, 08:33 PM   #12
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It depends on where you are going. To Annapolis Royal from St John, I save 375 miles and over three hours driving. With the price of gas in Canada, I figure I get about 2.5 miles per US dollar, so it costs about $150 in gas.The ferry is a little less than $200 US (they measure my Axis 24.1 at 24í every time). If you are going to Cape Breton or Halifax, you donít save much time and the distance is not as far so the gas costs are less. If you go up to Cape Breton or the Halifax area first, itís best to drive around. If you end or begin your trip in the Annapolis Valley, I think it is better to take the ferry from Digby. Itís a nice drive around on a good road up and over the mountain. And the ferry ride is nice too. Only 2 hours and on a nice day you can just about see across. Just my two cents.
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Old 06-27-2019, 09:11 PM   #13
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We haven't yet settled on any particular route or which we'll go, once we get to NS. But, definitely intend to take in both Cape Breton and PEI on this trip.
I'm printing out your very informative posts and we'll take them with us for reference, to route ourselves as economically as possible. And, from what you've shared, it can obviously make a big difference.
We were up there 15 yrs ago but were driving a Chrysler van on that trip, which got close to 3 times the mileage our Axis gets.
So, again, thanks for sharing your experience, wisdom and insights! We really appreciate it.
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Old 06-27-2019, 10:02 PM   #14
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Have a great time.
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Old 06-27-2019, 10:24 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by LandKO View Post
Having just about completed a 10 day trip to South Dakota, I offer you one piece of advice I learned on this trip.
TAKE YOUR TIME!!!
Iíve found, for me, a 5 hour per day drive is all I wish to take. Any more than that becomes a chore. Stop and smell the roses.

You are right about the 5 hours. Last year we took a 9 state trip and only one day was longer than 6 hours with most being 5 or less. Best trip we have had in 47 years. Now I want to do it all over again to see what we missed.
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Old 06-29-2019, 10:06 PM   #16
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You are right about the 5 hours. Last year we took a 9 state trip and only one day was longer than 6 hours with most being 5 or less. Best trip we have had in 47 years. Now I want to do it all over again to see what we missed.


X3 on driving time. Iím in the middle of a 7 week, 7,000 mile trip now and, especially in the windy mountainous west, find that 65mph is about the best speed I can manage for relaxed driving. Any more and the RV struggles and needs to downshift a lot and any less and it just takes too long to get anywhere. We did a 500 mile day across North Dakota with a gusty quartering head wind and I tried to keep it above 70 just so weíd get there before dark and it was pretty tiring. Coach handled ok but required a good bit of attention. Iím in the 250 miles a day crowd now. Get there early enough to relax and just take your time. Enjoy a picnic lunch along the way and itís still a 6 or 7 hour day. Also stay 2 days every third or fourth night. Stay in camp and read a book! Itís taken me almost 3 years to get used to a relaxing retired life. It didnít come naturally but now itís wonderful.
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Old 06-29-2019, 10:38 PM   #17
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Generally we try not to do over 350 miles per day and often less than that. Frequent stops to stretch legs, walk dog and checkout anything that piques our interest. We like the back roads and lesser used highways and usually don’t exceed 60 mph. Getting there is half the fun and being retired means no deadlines to meet.
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