Most Recent RV And Camping Blog Posts
Motorhome Camping in Freezing Weather
RVing in freezing weather can have its challenges. Not only do you have to keep the inside at a comfortable temperature, but you must also provide some heat to the basement to prevent any fluids from freezing in the tanks, lines and related components. Additionally, the engine may require heating several hours prior to departing camp.
So let’s look at some of the things you may face while traveling and camping in winter like temperatures. Obviously there are slippery road surfaces and winter driving hazards, but we will only look at dealing with the temperature issues related to your coach. Winter driving is a separate topic we can examine at a later date.
Interior heat in motorhomes is provided by an RV furnace or a hydronic heating system. The RV furnace is generally a propane fired unit that blows heated air into the living area. A hydronic system may be propane or diesel fired. The hydronic unit heats both the household hot water... [Read more...]
Host a Haunted Halloween Party, Harvest Party, or Trick or Treat your way through the RV Park; there are countless spooky ways to spend a freakishly fun Halloween at the Campground!
Host a Frightfully Spooky Halloween Party (dress-up, of course!), have a Pumpkin-Carving (and/or painting) Party, or just call it a Harvest Party (with some fun games included, of course). All are fun ways to celebrate with your friends and family the night of Halloween at the Campground!
Activities can include Face-Painting, Bobbing for Apples, Mummy Wrap (Teams race to wrap their mummy up the best with toilet paper or crepe paper), What’s under the Box? (Jell-O guts! Spaghetti brains! Grape eye balls!), Pumpkin Bowling, and Pin the Wart on the Witch! These are all easy-prep, easy clean-up games that can be fun for all ages, but obviously more so for kids.
You can also hold a Costume Contest with categories such as Best Homemade Costume, Scariest Costume, Best Group Costumes, Funniest Costume.... [Read more...]
October 24, 2014 by Cynthia Baum · 1 Comment
To maintain your sanity and arrive safely, here are 10 Tips for Keeping Young Children Occupied During Long Trips in the car or RV.
Are we there yet? Those four words can drive parents crazy, especially on long road trips. Not only can kids start to grate on your nerves on long road trips, it is also a safety issue if the driver is constantly turning around, checking the rear view mirror, or having to pass things back to the children. Did you know that nearly 40% of all accidents are caused by distracted drivers? Check out these tips for staying safe (and sane!) while on a long road trip with young children.
Bring fun activity bags—these can be in the form of yarn with uncooked noodles to string on (to make necklaces), paper dolls, or anything else that can be stored in a large zip lock bag (for when not in use). These can be simple or complex, depending on the age of your child. *Make sure not to give a young child small pieces that could pose a choking hazard.
Put on a movie—this... [Read more...]
There are many meals that travel well on the road. Plus you can create balanced meals and avoid eating out too frequently. My motto is to grocery shop more often and purchase smaller sized packages that store easily in smaller cabinets. Plan meals ahead and try to use ingredients that can create more than one meal or carry over from one recipe to the next. Freezing also allows for variety in your meals and ease of preparation on the days fun activities are planned.
Breakfast is the meal where egg dishes shine from simple poached or scrambled eggs to elaborate baked egg casseroles that freeze well for a quick warm-up in the microwave. Fully cooked bacon slices are an easy option – just reheat. Fresh fruit is the star in our coach with an orange, apple, peach or banana cut up every morning. Preserved “as they come” and sitting handily in a bowl, these travel easily. Cereals and oatmeal store well in airtight, plastic containers you can pickup at Camping World. Prepare... [Read more...]
Monica and her husband Victor decided to take a much-needed vacation to Ocho Rios, Jamaica. Unfortunately, their morning swim went terribly wrong when Monica felt an excruciating sharp pain in her ankle. She had been stung by a stingray. Victor managed to get the attention of a lifeguard, who arranged for a ground ambulance to a small clinic near the beach. Monica was unable to walk and in severe pain, and both she and Victor were feeling uneasy about the quality of care at the clinic. They decided to contact Good Sam TravelAssist for help.
TravelAssist conducted a medical consultation by phone with the treating doctor at the clinic, and decided to transport Monica to a nearby facility that was better equipped to handle her injuries. After coordinating the transfer, Good Sam TravelAssist stayed in touch with Monica, her husband, and the local medical team.
A few days later, it was determined that Monica needed to return home for extended care as the sting had damaged a tendon. Good Sam... [Read more...]
October 19, 2014 by Cynthia Baum · 1 Comment
Take your Halloween decorating up a few notches this year and Turn your RV into a Haunted House for some spooktacular fun! It’s really quite simple and there are zero things to store for next year, since you will do all or most of your shopping at dollar or thrift stores. Think of fun places to park your RV if you aren’t planning to be at a particularly festive campground. There are lots of places, such as “Trunk or Treats” or Block Parties that would love to host a mobile Haunted House for the night or weekend of Halloween. Once you figure out where you are going to spook some trick-or-treaters, you can slide right into your decorating projects.
There are lots of options for how to turn your RV into a Haunted House! One option is to transform your RV into a mummified monstrosity! Purchase A LOT of toilet paper (perhaps Costco would offer the best price or try your local Dollar Store). Then wrap your whole RV with it, turning it into a Haunted Mummified RV! Or... [Read more...]
October 18, 2014 by Rex Vogel · 1 Comment
Pop-up trailers are a blend of RV and tent, combining the best of both types. They give you the comfort and security of a travel trailer and the openness of a tent.
Viking Epic Pop-Up Trailers Consumers Digest Best Buy
Pop-up trailers, which are also known as pop-up campers, folding tent trailers, and folding campers are lightweight trailers with collapsible (usually canvas material) sides that fold for aerodynamic towing by a motorized vehicle. When set up, they provide cooking, dining, and sleeping facilities for up to eight people.
Pop-up trailers are an affordable way for the budget buyer to get into RVing, a viable first step of RV ownership.
They are lightweight and make a lot of sense to campers especially young families and those looking at upgrading from tent camping to an RV. Also, purchase prices are much lower than a conventional RV. They provide a wonderful camping choice.
The RV Industry Association (RVIA) is forecasting the industry will ship 10,900 pop-up units to retailers... [Read more...]
Remember not so long ago when you would come home from an RV road trip with five, eight, maybe ten rolls of film and get 200 pictures of your memories? It was expensive to buy and develop film. The digital age has changed all that. Even novice photographers can click off a few thousand photos on an RV trip. So how to you best meld Rving in the digital age?
When photographing your RV trip you inevitably become a slave to the light. That is not just adjusting your schedule to be in the right place at the right time for sunrises and sunsets but also knowing the best time of day to shoot the spectacular rock formations of the West or catching the perfect angle for monuments and landmarks. Scout the internet before you go to find subjects you want to shoot on your trip. Use an app like Sun Seeker that is ideal for letting you know where the best light or length of shadows will be for any location. Don’t forget that service may be unavailable in many places you are going so develop... [Read more...]
Many folks successfully use their RVs in cold weather, but it takes a bit of preparation to stay toasty when it’s freezing outside. This month’s column will address some issues surrounding winter camping.
I am spending four months this winter skiing at Mammoth Lakes, Lake Tahoe and Breckenridge, Colorado. Two of the RV resorts include electric in the monthly rental. The RV resort in Colorado charges a monthly rate plus electricity. My question: Is it cheaper to heat my RV (29-foot Winnebago Minnie) using propane or electricity? Thank you. Tom
Manufacturers of electric resistant heaters generally claim that the input of one kilowatt/hour produces about 3,400 BTUs, assuming 100 percent efficiency. Most electric heaters come fairly close to that. Each gallon of propane contains about 91,700 BTUs of heat energy. A typical RV forced-air furnace is probably only about 75 percent efficient, so a gallon of propane burned in the furnace... [Read more...]
GIVE ME A SIGN
After seeing the safety benefits of turn signals mounted under side-view mirrors, I decided to install a pair on my motorhome.
I purchased two sealed amber LED lamps complete with pigtail wires. I removed the sideview mirror assemblies and drilled the necessary holes in the bottom of the arm, then mounted the lamps. I added crimp-on terminals to the pig tails and fished a set of wires through the firewall. I spliced onto the existing turn-signal wires, connected the crimp-on terminals at the mirrors and re-installed the mirror assemblies.
John Theobald, Des Plaines, Illinois
One of the best things about traveling to another country is trying local, authentic cuisine. However, it pays to know a few basic rules so you don’t become one of the 10 million overseas travelers to suffer a bout of traveler’s diarrhea or other foodborne illnesses each year. Luckily, you can protect yourself from food borne health problems (and spending half your trip visiting restrooms) with these easy-to-follow travel tips:
1) Know before you go: Understand that the food you eat at home isn’t necessarily “safer” than food abroad; it’s often simply that your body just isn’t accustomed to foreign fare. According to Independent Traveler, one important difference between home-grown and foreign foods is the use of more “natural” fertilizers abroad, which can carry bacteria that could cause intestinal distress. One of the most important measures you can take to avoid getting sick overseas is to research the quality of food in the specific region you’ll... [Read more...]
I hear a lot of different ways to make chili. People try white chili, chicken chili, they add pasta, they add beans. But as a pure bred Texan, I like to think I know a little bit about how to make good chili. After all, we start feeding chili to our kids in baby bottles. I grew up on the stuff.
It’s spicy, delicious, and just about the easiest meal to make on the road. And I know without a shadow of a doubt, no person in their right mind would ruin chili by adding beans! That ain’t Texas, and that ain’t happening in my RV. Actually, I know a lot of people love adding beans in their chili. It’s perfectly normal, we just aren’t bean people. If you’re a fellow RVer, probably not a bad idea to skimp on beans anyhow since you’re in a confined space.
To make our family recipe, all you need is a crockpot and you’re golden. It’s definitely a fall meal, and if your RV is hooked up to electric it’s the perfect meal to have cooking while you’re out and about. Plus when you come... [Read more...]
While some of you may have your (kid’s) costumes picked out, others might be more interested in how you will be Decorating your RV for Halloween. With Halloween right around the corner, many folks are starting to think about how to dress up their RV for some Halloween Fun!
There are many simple, inexpensive, and FUN ways to make your RV really shine for the month of October! First off, you will want to consider just how decked out you want it to be. Then you will want to take into account what your budget is and how many things (if any) you might want to store for next year. For most RVers, space is limited, so I will focus on just those decorations that are either disposable or easily stored for next year.
Your first stop for easy home-made or cheap store-bought decor should be your local Dollar Store (99 cents store, Dollar Tree, etc). A Walmart or other local supermarket should also work just as well if your area doesn’t have a good dollar store.
Grab some cheap Halloween... [Read more...]
Photo by Gene Orren.
Driving large RVs is a skill that can be quickly mastered, but what about backing them into tight spaces? Backing into the campsite is one of the trickiest parts of RVing.
Here are some tips for backing your motor home into a campsite.
Walk the site first to assure there are no obstructions or items on the ground that may be of concern. If the site is not paved, check that the ground firmness is adequate.
Assess which approach direction would be best if maneuvering may be an issue.
Assign a spotter; your spouse, sibling or even fellow camper.
Advise your spotter of your desired final position. (Usually such that all services are within easy reach.)
Ask your spotter to keep themselves visible in the mirror and to use simple understandable hand signals.
Instruct the spotter to direct from the outside of the turn, observing the rear and outside front of the coach.
Start backing up only when directed by your spotter. Stop immediately if the spotter moves out of sight.
When... [Read more...]
Renting an RV is one of the best ways to try out the RV Lifestyle without having to shell out the investment required to purchase a vehicle for camping. Several styles and floor plans of RVs are available to rent from the company-owned fleets of Camping World.
Smaller rental companies that do not own their own rental fleets utilize privately owned vehicles for their rentals and you will likely find a larger variety of floor plans but few identical RVs so that finding a specific floor plan may be more difficult than when renting from companies with their own fleets.
You will also find that the availability of certain types of RVs may not be available in rental fleets, such as vacation trailers and fifth-wheels. Most of the types readily available fall into the Class A and Class C motorhome style (a class A, or bus type, is built from the chassis up, while a Class C starts with a cutaway van chassis and usually has sleeping quarters in an extension above the driver and... [Read more...]
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