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This is how I pack for three nights of tent camping...BRING IT ALL! Weighs less than my girlfriend, includes 23" high mattress, mosquito gazebo tent for drinking beer in the evenings, and a tent big enough to stand up in so that you can put your pants on in the a.m. like a man!
Your girlfriend see you post a loaded motorcycle weighs less than she does and you won't need to take your pants off.
 

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Your girlfriend see you post a loaded motorcycle weighs less than she does and you won't need to take your pants off.
THAT is why I haven't told her about this forum! A road side stop in Wisconsin...it's like going to Czechoslovakia!

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If you are brave enough to take the chance you can just pull off the highway into a wood line and pop a tent for the night. Avoid posted property and try to find open national forest land. Truck stops have cheap showers or if you are going to be out for several weeks joining a nationwide gym is an easy way to shower. Anytime fitness has 4000+ locations all across the country and they are open 24 hours a day.
I've never understood why Americans aren't allowed to rough it out next to the road in a field without paying a fee.
 

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I've never understood why Americans aren't allowed to rough it out next to the road in a field without paying a fee.
If it's private land, you'd be trespassing. A lot of land in the southern gulf coast is owned by timber companies and leased to hunting clubs. Definitely not where you want to be during hunting season. If it's land that is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM land as we call it) then there is a small usage fee. It helps keep the BLM in business. If it's public land, you can just set up a tent and camp on it. You'd be next to a road, which isn't the safest place to camp though. You also have to deal with road noise. Places like the one Miks posted above are probably managed by the state. The grass is cut, there are the brown painted posts on the side of the road you can see in the pic... Someone maintains that area so there is probably a fee associated with it to pay for that kind of maintenance. Most state and local parks have designated camping areas in part to keep the area clean.
 

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You’ve gotten the gist of it from the responses so far. Prices for campsites have only gone up and up with state parks usually being the most expensive, edging onto motel prices. Online reservations have severely curtailed the ability to just show up spontaneously at campgrounds (national, state, county, all of them) and find an empty site. My perennial issue is finding a water source on BLM/FS land; if you’re only camping a night in each place that might not be an issue. Good gear is worth the cost but initially will set you back more than a fair share of nights at the Ritz; so if you don’t have any then that might settle your decision for you.

Covid Related Warning: I was camping out west when lockdown fist closed all parks. Then over the summer had a cross-country trip (helping out with a move) and all states we passed through had some restrictions on camping. Federal parks were a crapshoot being mostly closed; state parks were limited to residents of the state if they were open; online reservations were required to avoid contact. I don’t know if these restrictions are still in place but I’d double check before hitting the road.
 

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Don't ignore State Park campgrounds. Typical tent site rates in Oregon and Washington are in the $30 range or less if you can convince the ranger to let you camp in the hiker/biker sites. California will be more but not outrageous. I'd search each state you're intending to pass through and check out their options.
 

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Covid Related Warning: I was camping out west when lockdown fist closed all parks. Then over the summer had a cross-country trip (helping out with a move) and all states we passed through had some restrictions on camping. Federal parks were a crapshoot being mostly closed; state parks were limited to residents of the state if they were open; online reservations were required to avoid contact.
People have certainly upped the game with camping being an outdoor activity, sales of campers went through the roof! I live in a state that didn't close anything, no restrictions so we had all the people from the surrounding states gobble up all the camp sites. The state legislature enacted a new rule for reservations that people within the state would get a 7 day preference for reservations. With all the activity, whether kayaking or camping, the prices IE demand curve has increased the cost of camp grounds for sure.
 

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Hi, is it less expensive to motorcycle camp instead of hotels? Might be a silly question but looking at some of the rates at a KOA has me wondering if it really is cheaper. Live in Ohio so unless it's an epic journey will probably want to camp in the North and South of the Eastern side of the lower 48 states. Is it cheaper?
Try state-run campgrounds. Simple, cheap and generally cleaner than private / commercial enterprises.
 
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