I was wondering what most folks favor for parking, rest, break, etc...
a: general truck stop
b: rest area
c: walmart parking lot
d: exit ramps
I myself tend to ONLY use truck stops as a fuel, shower, laundry and coffee stop. While there are some pretty nice ones, most are nasty.
I do like rest areas and spend most of my rest times there.
I've never been kicked out of a walmart and always treat them nice, pick up after myself and park well out of the way.
I really do not use ramps, but know there are some pretty nice quiet areas and there are some states that frown on this.
I've also parked by some lakes, rivers, picnic areas, abandon lots that had a nice area out of way, etc....
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The only downside to hanging out in rest areas: you can be D.O.T.'d by some overzealous officer. Otherwise, they're great, especially if you have everything you need in the truck. Lately, I've been spending more time in rest areas... for the scenery out West, and for the convenience back East. Those truck stops back East fill up pretty fast at night, so parking in a rest area or service plaza can be a good way to deal with that whole situation, as long as toll receipts aren't an issue in your logbook. By dawn, perhaps even a bit earlier, parking places are opening up in those crowded truck stops, and you can hit the truck stop and take care of business... not a bad system when you choose a rest area or service plaza that fits in with your overall strategy. My favorite rest areas are those little view areas out on the San Rafael Swell in UT... I camp out there whenever I can, because there's nobody around and the scenery is fantastic. You can read about that whole deal in that blog I wrote... another good rest area with a heller view is that one in Glenwood Springs, CO, the one right by the river. That place is cool, and very scenic with the canyon walls towering overhead. I guess there are too many good rest areas to mention, all over the country... as long as you have what you need in the truck, they make great places to camp out. Some of them have big ol' restrooms where you can take a "submariner's bath"---cleaner than most truck stops, some of those places. Well, that's my $.02 on rest areas and their valuable role in trucking.heyns57 Thanks this.
Actually, there are about half a dozen view areas on each side of I-70 as you cross the San Rafael Swell... some are more scenic than others, but all of them are cool. You can also park at the foot of the San Rafael Reef on the westbound side, then explore the Reef right there on that side of the road... a really cool place!!! I hike around and check it out whenever I camp there. Most travelers on that stretch of I-70 are intent upon passing through what seems like a desolate area, but if you go there fully-rigged with supplies, you can have a blast... a million stars overhead at night too, if you like that sort of thing. I like the Swell because of the scenery and the solitude---you can look out over 100 miles or more of canyonlands to the south, and generally have the view area to yourself, which makes for a nice change from the average truck stop. The Swell is at a comfortable elevation for sleeping as well; you can kill your motor, open your sliders and enjoy a quiet restful night (unless you're pullin' a reefer, of course, in which case there will be some noise when the unit kicks on). Anyway, you'll figure it out... I like the "long view" when I'm out trucking, and the Swell offers a good one. "Adios!"
P.S. Forgot to mention that whenever I'm westbound on I-70, I stop at that City Market in New Castle, CO (105 yardstick), and stock my cooler... haven't been there in a while, but they used to have a pretty good deli too, where you could buy hot food as well as sandwich material. If you're eastbound, you can hit the Hook in Richfield or that little stop in Salina... or the Walmart in Cedar City if you run up I-15 to pick up I-70. Oh, yeah, that little town of Beaver (?) has a truck stop and a few other places to buy food and whatnot.Last edited: May 29, 2010
When Im on the road if my truck stops its for a reason, like sleep, eat, shower, ets... as far as parking to sleep I use shopping centers, Grocery stores just park out back or out of the way. If theres neighbors shut off your engine... The key to not being thrown out is don't be a jerk, try being polite to your temporary neighbors. Leave it at least of clean as you find it....
Most truckstops I would get my tires dirty in, there are some that aren't Bad, but few. I try to fuel at CFN's no bs just fuel...
Motel room = $40-$60 (days inn, super 8, travelodge, motel 6, etc...)
Includes: continental breakfast ($0), coffee ($0), heat/ac ($0), clean bathroom w/ shower ($0), TV with more channels than I can watch ($0), and there's USUALLY a decent restaurant within walking distance to grab dinner at if I want to go that route.
Truck = 8-10 hours of idle time, burning $3/gallon fuel at 1 gallon/hour ($24-$30)...not to mention the wear & tear on the engine idling that long. Gotta pay for breakfast ($10-$15), and coffee (+$1), get dressed and walk across the parking lot to use the bathroom, pay for a shower if I haven't fueled there ($8-$10), and if I'm LUCKY, I can pick up a station or two on the TV (and HOPE something worth watching is on). IF I want dinner, I'm limited to whatever crappy restaurant is inside.
So, $40-$60 to be comfortable....
....or $40-$60 to live in a truck.
Not to mention, the added expense of a sleeper is only able to be depreciated over several years (same as the truck) and only the interest on the loan is deductible beyond the depreciation.
Motel rooms are deductible at 100% of what you paid, when you paid it.
Trucks are for working. When it comes time to stop, I get out of the truck and get comfortable. I guess it's what you get used to, and your own personal preferences.
I'm in a cargo van, so there isn't much about it that is comfy if spending extended time in it. I usually park at truck stops, just because of being a woman out there by myself. I can park out front, on the back row, out of the way. However, as the weather is getting warmer, I'm really disliking the truck stops, as there is no shade anywhere and running the van doesn't do much good, as the A/C doesn't work well when just idling.
I've been looking for city parks with shade, but find there are few parks with any kind of a shade tree. I've been thinking of stopping at rest areas, but to be honest, I feel a bit uneasy there. The shade is a huge draw for me, though.
I do get a motel about once every 2-3 weeks, just so I can relax and stretch out for a few hours. So far, I've only stayed at Motel 6, as they are the cheapest and all I'm truly concerned with is having a bed and shower. I don't need the pool, laundry, work out room, etc. For the price, they are the most economical for me. I only stay if I can find one for $29.99 to $34.99. More than that, I just stay in the van til I can find one in my price range.
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