A lot of campgrounds are expensive, noisy, detours. Most young people crossing the country are not plunking down 20-35 dollars a night. It is a good deal if you have 8 kids and 3 tents on the same site, it sucks for solo campers. You can find stealth sites anywhere at any time within a few hundred yards of most places. You have to look small for micro environments. Some areas do have park like settings that are vast and available, but it only takes a few feet to put up a tent, etc... and you do not need a lot of space.
One thing to do is to consider you own neighbourhood. Look it over in detail and figure out all the places you could sleep. Imagine a stealth entry, not setting up your tent and fireplace in the open at 3 pm.
People get all wound up about the law, and rightly. But there are probably lots of things we do that are not appreciated. Like stealth overstaying reading late at night in restaurants, or using their bathrooms for a sponge, bath. Loitering in city parks. Not to mention the moving violations. After you have been passed by the 3 thousandth person blabbing on their cellphone while driving, you may have a different view on things.
If you didn't go the boy scout route, do a bunch of sub 24 hour weekend trips
to get the hang of camping , and packing.
Well it's been a year since i started this thread. I'm proud to say that the trip for 2014 is still going to happen! It's surprising right? But it's really going to happen, first week of June and I will be off. The trip will be 60 days and starts in Northeast Ohio and ends in San Francisco.
I want to tell teens everywhere that adventures don't have to be put off for adulthood. Get out there and enjoy life. You only have one life and teens are perfectly capable of making mature decisions. If you work hard for your goal it can become true.
Good luck with the tour. I agree with others, you will need to carry an NOTORIZED letter saying you have permission from your parents. I guarantee you a local will call the cops "for your safety" because they think you are a runaway. Be prepared for that. Also don't accept any housing from a stranger period (although warmshowers maybe an exception if it is from a married couple and only those who have hosted several people before).
Make sure you have a phone and a back-up battery charger. It will be very important to keep your parents in the know about where you are and who you are with. Always text an address to your folks if you are staying at someone's house.
Have a great trip.
Dude, this trip will earn you a PhD in human relations and self reliance. Not to mention the total fun you're gonna have. Join www.warmshowers.org and overnight with some of the hosts, your cycling peers.
By all means get that notarized letter just in case. Ride predictably and be highly visible. Give us a heads up and a link to your journal when you start.
The bicycle is one of the great inventions of mankind. Delights children, challenges young men to feats of daring, and turns old men into boys again.--Me
Remember to wash behind your ears young man!
Seriously one think that many youngster lack is a good street sense. Have you radar turned up extra high. If something looks a little hinky then pass it by.
Warmshowers has been mentioned. It's pros It is a place to stay and that is about it. Cons: Not well vetted. Couch Surfing: Very well vetted. Cons: it is much more social and nt really just a place to stay.
"The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."