We leave Huachuca City, AZ on February 27th for what we are calling our Westward Ho journey (noted in light green). It is a different sort of traveling than we have done in the past, as it entails lots of brief stopovers, which as seasoned travelers know can get expensive in a hurry! We're heading out into all new territory a lot of which is quite desolate. With a lot of Internet research we've quelled our fears of the unknown and the cost of the trip. Here is how we went about planning such an extensive and somewhat scary trip! We first roughed out a route to all the things we hope to do between February and October. We then calmed ourselves by acknowledging that we weren't on a time schedule and didn't have to get get to any particular place. We might just go to our first stop and decide to stay there! That's the beauty of full time rving! Once an approximate route was set, it was time to research the stops along the way. I like to do a Yahoo image search of communities we'll be staying in and places of interest. There is a comfort in gaining familiarity with what we will encounter. I also do a quick wikipedia check of the communities, so as to have an idea of their size and other facts of interest. I love the website, RV Park Reviews, for getting an overview of r.v. parks within and near the communities. If confronted with a lot of parks to choose from, I learned that starting with their rates can save a lot of time searching through their amenities to later find out the rates are well above what you are willing to pay. I keep index cards for the r.v. parks we might choose to stay in, as well as, the ones we crossed off as choices so that once we are in the community we won't have to mentally question whether we checked out parks we see. We'll have the information readily on hand. We don't reserve r.v. parks ahead, as we like to see what we'll be staying in, especially if it's long term! Touring the national parks with a travel companion that is age 62+ and qualifies for a senior park pass is great, as the national parks and monuments entrance fees are waived per car load and in the case of per person fees gets the pass holder and 3 more people into the park free! The camping fees within the parks that would normally be $12.00 are only $6.00!!! So much for the rumor of how expensive it is to tour the national parks in California! Since we plan to stay a month in Needles, CA, we only need to plan our trip to that point. Once we're settled in, we'll research the next leg of the journey. We have done our homework and will be on our way soon with some comfortable knowledge of what to expect and excitement in our hearts!