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  • Most Recent RV And Camping Blog Posts

    RV Tech-Tip: Hide Pet Bowls

    September 10, 2014 by · 1 Comment 

    RV Tech-Tip: Hide Pet Bowls

    RVers enjoy taking their pets along when they travel, but one problem with having a pet on board is where to put the food and water dishes. We all look for an out-of-sight spot where the dishes won’t get kicked or stepped into. This RV tech tip is a great solution. My wife came up with a great idea to hide our pet bowls. She asked me to remove the door from the storage compartment below the stove. This provides an area for the pet’s dishes, where they are out of the way and virtually out of sight. Credit: Bruce Trudgen, Williamsburg MI

    Reducing The Rattles of RV Travel, Part II

    September 8, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    Reducing The Rattles of RV Travel, Part II

    On Thursday, the Good Sam Camping blog discussed ways to reduce rattling in the RV’s interior compartments. Today’s article focuses on tracking down rattles in other parts of the RV. There is a new saying for RVers. “There are two types of RVs, those that rattle, and those that don’t move.” If you want to avoid rattles, leave your RV in the driveway or in a long-term park. If you drive it, it will rattle. But if the rattles are driving you batty, there is hope. If you take the proper steps and follow certain precautions, you can minimize—if not completely stop—those annoying rattles as you venture down the highway. Reducing Rattles in the RV Itself It stands to reason. If you drive your RV down the road, you will over time shake your RV loose from its fittings. But rattles are your friends. They tell you something is working loose—a screw, a bracket, or a clamp. Locating these rattles takes a bit of sleuthing. The first step is to inspect in your lockers, grabbing... [Read more...]

    What To Do When It Storms at Your Campsite

    September 7, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    What To Do When It Storms at Your Campsite

    You’re­ on what you ho­pe­ will be a leisurely RV camping­ trip. It’s a warm summer afternoon. Suddenly, a few raindrops splat your arms, and before you know it, the sky opens up. Then you hear thunder in the distance. What should you do to ensure your family’s safety? Following heavy rains in the mountains a wash separating the campground from the entrance road at Catalina State Park near Tucson flooded stranding campers for several days. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved Stormy weather can happen at any time, anywhere. While yo­ur best choice depends on the severity of the storm and your location, being prepared to act quickly could be a matter of survival. Knowing what to do before, during, and following severe weather is a critical part of being prepared and may make all the difference when seconds count. Be Informed Know the risk in your area for hurricanes, tornados, thunderstorms, damaging winds, dust storms, blizzards, ice storms, and other severe weather phenomena. NOAA... [Read more...]

    The Truth About “Glamping”

    September 5, 2014 by · 2 Comments 

    The Truth About “Glamping”

    The Truth About Glamping is…why not make yourself as comfortable as possible while camping?? Especially considering the rising nightly rates, outlandish gas prices, and the booked and sometimes overcrowded campgrounds? Quite honestly “Glamping” is the way to go! To look more into the phenomenon of “glamping,” we must first look at the definition and meaning behind the term itself.  According to the Urban Dictionary at http://www.urbandictionary.com, “Glamping” is defined as “Shorthand for glamorous camping; luxury camping.” So although it may have a bad connotation, it is actually just camping with a luxurious spin on it. Whether it means your RV is decked out like these unique ones or you simply wouldn’t consider camping in anything other than an RV, there is absolutely nothing wrong with “Glamping” despite the negative connotations surrounding this term. It is common for women, especially, to be known for glamping,... [Read more...]

    RV Tech-Tip: Reducing The Rattles of RV Travel

    September 4, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    RV Tech-Tip: Reducing The Rattles of RV Travel

    The Rattles of RV travel Unlike a towable RV, a motorized unit involves travelling in the RV for the entire journey.  This also means listening to all the silverware, dishes and glasses that tend to rattle, sometimes nonstop. They still do this in a towable, you just don’t hear it. In addition to the annoying clatter, tinkling and cracking sounds that emerge from every cupboard and drawer, your pieces are slowly being destroyed.  Cracks, chips and abrasive marks on your dinnerware are going to become evident and finally be ruined, given time.  So, how can it be prevented?  How can you reduce the rattles of RV travel?  How can peace reign within the coach’s cabin? You may have tried towels, rags or napkins inserted between each, but that’s not the answer.  They still move about until they once again start the familiar clattering chorus. Non-Skid Shelf Liner Material So, how do you reduce the rattles of RV travel?  Well, here’s the answer you have been looking for, and it’s... [Read more...]

    Visit Paso Robles Wine Country

    September 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    Visit Paso Robles Wine Country

    Harvest time in Paso Robles Wine Country is almost upon us! This is an exciting time shared by winemakers, growers, tasters and wine enthusiasts alike that celebrates another successful year of hard work and dedication. To commemorate this time of year, Paso Robles is hosting their 2014 Harvest Wine Weekend from October 17-19, 2014. More than 130 wineries will host a variety of activities during this three day event, which includes favorites such as dinners, tastings, ceremonial grape stomps, live music and much more! As Wine Enthusiast’s Wine Region of the Year, the Paso Robles wine region is sure to offer your taste buds a real treat this year. Remember the 4 S’s during your tastings – this is a great method to identify the different components that make each wine unique. The 4 S’s method can vary depending on the expert you’re conversing with, but for this festival, the following is recommended: Swirl – this releases the aromatics of the wine so different scents can be more... [Read more...]

    Camping In Different Climates

    August 28, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    Camping In Different Climates

      High deserts are known for causing dehydration, sunburn, sunstroke, and dry skin. Drink plenty of water and apply sunscreen. Pictured above Arches National Park. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved RV camping styles and activities vary with location and climate. Climate is a key factor in the planning and enjoyment of a camping trip. Research the location to be aware of the type of climate and weather you’re likely to experience. Desert Camping Desert camping can be a unique and rewarding experience. The stark beauty of red rock mesas and mysterious hoodoos in the Southwest is enchanting. But the harsh climate and terrain that defines a desert requires certain precautions and special considerations especially during the summer months. Drink large amounts of water. By the time you feel thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. Arid climates require one gallon of water, per person, per day—minimum. Sun and heat are related factors to watch. Wear sunscreen, and reapply often. Sun-glasses... [Read more...]

    Chapter Life

    August 27, 2014 by · 1 Comment 

    Chapter Life

    Good Sam chapters are the building blocks of the Good Sam Club. Best of all, chapters are groups of friends that camp together. Membership in a chapter only requires a Good Sam Club membership. It’s up to the chapter to decide if there are dues or schedules. Indeed, there is nothing mysterious about chapters: There are no entry rituals or secret handshakes. The only thing you need is the desire to camp with more people than your spouse or kids. With chapters, you can travel to places that might seem too far to go by yourself. You can learn great new campground games. You can help your community by volunteering with others for a good cause, or maybe just sit around the campfire with great friends and solve the world’s problems. Currently, there are nearly 1,500 chapters across North America. Chapters participate in Samborees, which are held in almost every state and province and feature great food, fun and entertainment. Some chapters organize theme weekends. Esthermay and I have been... [Read more...]

    Travel Assistance 101: What to Do if Your Wallet is Lost or Stolen While Traveling

    August 23, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    Travel Assistance 101: What to Do if Your Wallet is Lost or Stolen While Traveling

    A lost wallet—especially while traveling—can be nerve-wracking, frustrating and costly. While that’s not a situation anyone would like to experience first-hand, if you’re prepared and know what to expect, you can actually make things a lot easier on yourself. If you’re a TravelAssist member, contact us right away and we’ll help you through it. Everyone else can follow these simple steps: Where to Start: Domestic Travelers Even if you don’t suspect your wallet was actually stolen, you’ll still need to begin at the local police station to create a paper trail. Your bank and credit card companies will not only need a copy, but this also helpful with filing travel insurance claims. And assuming your ID was in your wallet, filing a police report helps validate your information should someone try to use it illegally and also helps prove your identity at the airport. According to the TSA, not having an ID does not necessarily mean you won’t be allowed to fly. In fact, if... [Read more...]

    Top 4 Ways To Ensure a Clean RV and Campsite

    August 22, 2014 by · 1 Comment 

    Top 4 Ways To Ensure a Clean RV and Campsite

    Top 4 Ways to Ensure a Clean RV and Campsite 1. Bring a Broom/Dust Pan– This may seem like common sense, but its imperative to sweep out the dirt, dust, leaves, etc to maintain a clean RV, (or tent), during the camp out.  And it is even more important to remember to clean up after your camp out, before heading home. 2. Bring a Floor Covering and Mat for right outside your RV (or tent)–  Many places sell these and they come in a wide range of sizes.  You can get ones that are soft and squishy or have fake grass, either way you definitely need something to cover the ground for when you step down out of the RV.  It is even more important when you are heading into the RV.  It is nice to have a clean area (on the mat), where you can sit and take off your shoes before entering, which leads me to my next point… 3. Take your Shoes off before Entering the RV EVERY SINGLE TIME!– This can be tricky and seem tedious if your shoes are not the easy kind that slip on and... [Read more...]

    RV Tech-Tip: Tire Monitor

    August 21, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    RV Tech-Tip: Tire Monitor

    One of the most critical items on your RV is what supports it: the tires.  It is very important that they are correctly sized, properly rated, aired up with the required pressure, and in good general condition.  These things usually can be observed visually, except the air pressure.  For this, you will need to use a pressure gauge to determine if they are correctly inflated. So, how often should you check the tire pressure?  Well, though most would never do it, it should be done prior to hitting the road on each and every day. The majority of tires on the road are inflated using normal compressed air.  This air contains the same concentration of oxygen as we live in.  Oxygen monticules are extremely small, so small they can pass through the rubber compounds of the tire over time.  Therefore a pressure loss is inevitable.  The temperature outside also alters the pressure from one day to the next. Tire Monitor Sensor Unlike an automobile, RVs can suffer major body damage should a... [Read more...]

    RVs From Back In The Day

    August 20, 2014 by · 1 Comment 

    RVs From Back In The Day

    Vintage trailers continue their popularity among today’s RVers. There is a certain charm and nostalgia with vintage trailers that is hard to find with new recreational vehicles. Tin Can Tourists, Denver, Colorado (1918) The rolling homes were small – a bed, a kitchen, and a dinette in one room. Over the decades they have expanded into today’s large-sized RVs, but there is an increasing demand for the older trailers. These vintage models are often called Canned Hams, Shiny Hineys, or Tin Cans. Whatever they may be called, classic trailers from the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s are rolling back into popularity. When travel trailers first started roaming American roads, their owners were called Tin Can Tourists because they heated tin cans of food on gasoline stoves by the roadside. The Tin Can Tourists formed the first camping club in the United States, holding their inaugural rally in Florida in 1919 and growing to 150,000 members by the mid-1930s. They had an initiation;... [Read more...]

    Setting Up Your RV Campsite

    August 19, 2014 by · 4 Comments 

    Setting Up Your RV Campsite

    Setting up the outdoor area in your campsite is a pleasurable and integral component of a successful camping trip. It is often the starting point of your outdoor adventures. However, it can be tedious. Have you found that too often you get bogged down while setting up your RV campsite and spend too much time on the little things? Or causing the set-up process to take valuable time from other activities, decreasing the enjoyment of setting up camp? You can overcome this and complete the set-up in as little time as possible by developing a campsite setup plan for each member of your family. Each knows what they have to do and everyone is working toward the same goal – which is to jump in the pool, take a hike, go on a bike ride, or anything else your family likes to do during camping trips. Setting up your outdoor area Make a list of everything that goes into setting up your unique campsite. Everyone’s list will be different, and may vary between campground locations,... [Read more...]

    Explore Tennessee

    August 18, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    Explore Tennessee

    Where the Grand Ole Opry began in 1943 In Tennessee, there is just about as much to explore under the ground as there is above it. The Volunteer State is home to more than 8,500 caves -more than any other state. One Tennessean who made good use of those caves was Jack Daniel, who used pure, iron-free cave water chilled by nature to a constant 56 degrees to make his finest “Tennessee sippin’ whiskey.” When you visit the Jack Daniel Distillery No 1 in Lynchburg, you will find a statue of the man himself standing watch over his treasured cave spring. Any Jack Daniel’s whiskey you take home will have to age a bit longer before consumption, however, since the distillery is in a dry county. Even without spelunking gear, you can explore Tennessee underground in more than two dozen caves. That includes Appalachian Caverns that served as a hospital during the Civil War and the Lost Sea in Sweetwater where tours are by boat on America’s largest underground lake. Above... [Read more...]

    Explore South Carolina

    August 18, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

    Explore South Carolina

    Raven Cliffs Falls tumbles off Upcountry escarpment For first-time vacationers to South Carolina, the state is bursting with surprises. Starting with its size – South Carolina is one of the ten smallest states and the entire Palmetto State isn’t beyond much of a three-hour drive. That means a day trip to the mountainous Upcountry from your favorite RV park in the Lowcountry is a comfortable possibility.  You can easily explore South Carolina by taking a trip to Folly Beach, Edisto Beach or Hunting Island from your best lakeside campsite in the Upcountry. South Carolina has its own bonafide national park – something most of its Southern neighbors can’t claim. Congaree National Park is a world of languid blackwater rivers and protects the largest contiguous old growth bottomland of loblolly pines, tupelo and bald cypress in the United States. Natural wonders extend beyond the swamps; Whitewater Falls is the highest waterfall east of the Mississippi River. It’s... [Read more...]

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