RV Travel on Desert Back Roads
(Agoura Hills, CA)
Q. Okay, so we two gals would really like to start boondocking with our 30-ft. Class C Jayco. We are concerned about traveling, towing our toad, on desert roads which may not be suitable for our rig. Is there an off-road atlas or guide, similar to the State/County Highway Road Atlas by DeLorme, etc. that would give us the confidence to travel off road in the desert southwest?
Marianne's Reply: I don't know of any that will give you the information you would need. Dirt road travel is so individual - depending on what you're comfortable with.
Our rig is shorter than yours but we don't have a toad. We do bump down some dirt roads but always cautiously. In your case, it's probably best to unhitch and explore the road with your toad first. As you're probably aware, just because a road is on the map, doesn't guarantee it's driveable. It's not just about the condition of the road either, but about the ability to turn around if you need to.
Ask about current road conditions at the local BLM, National Forest, or other information centers. Remember, most desert roads will become impassible when wet so bring enough supplies to wait it out a few days if needed.
Watch for other RVs parked in the desert. If they got out there, probably you can too.
We found that there aren't many guides to help determine what roads are RV-accessible and lead to good boondocking sites. That's one of the reasons I wrote The Frugal Shunpiker's Guides.