Our family of 4 (myself, my husband Terry, our daughter Jennifer 20, our son Michael 10) and our dog, left Terrace last year on May 31st for a year long RV road trip, 333 days. We took a year break from our life and the rat race, rented out our house, pulled our son out of school and took off.
We spent the 1st month traveling in BC and then drove across Canada to PEI arriving there mid July. Our daughter stayed in PEI as she was getting set up for University in the Fall. We spent 6 weeks in PEI enjoying the island and another 3 weeks in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia before heading through Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont to the Adirondacks in New York State for 3 weeks. As Canadians we are only allowed to be in the USA for 182 days at a time so we went back to Canada for one month and stayed with family in Quebec before heading back into the USA for 6 months early November.
We drove down to Florida staying 2.5 months at a beautiful RV park at Lake Rousseau, and then followed the Gulf of Mexico through Alabama, Mississippi and the bayou's of Louisiana to Texas's Rio Grand Valley where we stayed for 6 weeks. We witnessed the devastation that Hurricane Katrina had on the Gulf coast a few years back and luckily we did not see any signs of the oil spill damage from last year.
We stayed in the Chihuahuan desert in New Mexico, went to the Grand Canyon in Arizona, Las Vegas in Nevada, and followed the narrow Highway 1 up the Californian coast before arriving home on April 30, 2011, eleven months after we departed Terrace. Our home away from home was our 23 ft 1992 motorhome, we traveled through 9 Provinces and through 22 states for a duration of 33,000 km's.
Some of the many highlights of our trip were seeing the beauty of PEI, the Cabot Trail on Cape Breton Island, going underground 800 ft in the Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico, the train trip to Grand Canyon in Arizona, Disney World in Florida and the Redwoods in California.
The worst part of the trip was getting caught in Hurricane Earl in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia in September and the rising fuel prices once we hit the west coast.
We had a budget of $800 a month for fuel and $800 a month for RV/campsites which we managed stick to. Our food and entertainment costs varied but it wasn't more than we normally spent at home in Terrace. We did not tow a vehicle with us, we relied on our bicycles to get around. It was quite a bit cheaper for us to live and travel in the RV than to maintain our household at home. We had no mechanical problems with our RV and only had one flat tire all year.
We kept in touch with our family and friends through our blog http://mundaytravelers.blogspot.com/
and also through Facebook when we found a free wifi hotspot.
Our year away from home was an eye opener for us, we were so excited to leave Terrace and set off on a journey of unknown destinations but we were also so very excited to arrive back to BC and especially Terrace, the most beautiful place on earth! We got to do what hardly no other families get to do in a lifetime; traveling for a year, spending one year with our son ..every day...while he is still a child seeing new things through his eyes, and no telephone calls and no bills!