It was finally launch day! We planned to take a full month visiting the southern states on our way to Workamp in Southern California. We had no idea where we would end up the first night, we only knew we wanted to knock out some miles and get out of Florida. We had already said all our goodbyes to family and left our gracious hosts, Mike and Michelle (who were kind enough to let us park in the driveway between the time our house was sold and when we were ready to roll about a month later.) Well, we made it to Tallahassee and had our first “Waldocking” experience. Here’s what we learned that first night.
Tips from a novice Waldocker:
- Check websites and apps like freecampsites.net and Allstays to find out which Walmarts have traditionally allowed overnight RV parking.
- Call your store of choice to confirm that information and find out if there is a specific place you should park. We were nervous about doing this at first, thinking it may be better to ask forgiveness not permission, but every time we have called ahead, they were nice and knowledgeable. I think they appreciate the call.
- If you have your choice of locations in the lot, stay away from the entrance, most likely the store is open 24 hours. During our first experience, cars seemed to be revving, racing and playing music all night right next to us.
- If you are looking for a quiet spot, try to stay away from parked semi-trucks with resting drivers, the trucks get really loud – however if you are trying to hide your own generator noise, this is a good option.
- I’ve seen many debates online about the use of slide-outs and generators. My feeling is you’re parking, not camping so, try to stay inconspicuous. It’s a great thing Walmart offers weary travelers, I don’t want to blow it. Oh, I also like to go in and buy something, not that the crew would ever notice or even care, but it makes me feel better and I can always use more food.
So, after getting very little sleep we were up bright and early to head west towards California, unfortunately our plan to visit New Orleans was waylaid by Tropical Storm Gordon.