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1999 Cross Country Road Trip
July 28 to August 10, 1999 by Lolo
This was our first cross country adventure and the beginning of a whole new style of travel for us. Having rented an RV about a year ago and liking the concept, we decided to purchase a motorhome of our own. After some very extensive research, we came to the conclusion that the best choice for us was a Lazy Daze 26 1/2 foot Class C.
Since Lazy Daze has no dealerships on the east coast, Herb flew out to Montclair, California where they have their factory, in order to take a look a one. It was love at first sight, which if you knew Herb, is extremely shocking. Being an engineer, he is extremely quality conscious and very critical of shoddy workmanship. For him to be so enthused about this motorhome, I knew it had to be something special. He placed the order and was told it would be ready for pickup in three months.
Exactly on schedule, our motorhome was ready. We flew out to my brother's home in West Lake Village, where we spent a few days lounging around the pool, making lists upon lists of the supplies we needed to stock the motorhome. After practically a full day at Home Depot and Target, we loaded my brother's SUV to the brim with our purchases and headed to the Lazy Daze factory to pick up our new toy.
While Herb had been out to the factory in April to order the motorhome and was quite intimate with its features, I had not until this moment seen it in person. It was absolutely beautiful and tremendously cozy (a feature very important to us). The kids loved it just as much as I did.
Lazy Daze then got us a driver to take us across the border into Nevada, where we officially took ownership of it, thereby avoiding paying California sales tax. From there, we were to spend the next 2 1/2 weeks touring the country on our way home to New Jersey, seeing such highlights as the Grand Canyon, Bryce National Park, Zion, and much more along the way. Our good friends, the Kalchbrenners from back home, flew out to Las Vegas and rented an RV from Cruise America to join us for part of our trip. Their 7-year-old daughter Alexis and 9-year-old son Jonathon got along great with our 8 and 10-year old sons so everyone was thrilled about the plan.
Since this was our first RV trip and I had not yet obtained that wing-it, free spirit feeling that only came after years of experience and Herb's nagging, I had everything planned down to the minute. All my t's were crossed and i's dotted. Each campground was reserved, every hike was planned, and even dinner reservations were made in advance. I was determined to have everything go perfectly. Hey, this wasn't only my vacation; the Kalchbrenners were depending upon my good planning as well.
Unfortunately, there was one very dark cloud hanging over us on our maiden voyage--Herb's dad was terminally ill with lung cancer and probably would not survive more than a few months. Leaving him and his mom was not an easy thing for Herb to do, but they knew that the new motorhome was a fulfillment of his dream to travel and insisted that he go ahead with the trip as planned.
Road Trip Highlights and Lowlights
- Wading the waters of the Narrows in Zion National Park
- Ladies trying to enjoy cocktails while perched on the rim of the Grand Canyon
- Hiking from Sunrise to Sunset Point though the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon
- Hiking to the Landscape Arch in Arches National Park
- Touring the Balcony House in Mesa Verde National Park
- Racing home to New Jersey from Mesa Verde to Kansas when Herb's dad takes a turn for the worse
Now on to the voyage!
You can download a detailed pdf Road Trip Travel Itinerary or zipped Microsoft Streets and Trips Travel Road Map file for this trip using the links shown below.