Weekend of March 10-11, 2007
Issue 266 of RV Travel. Learn about RV camping, RV travel, RV news and much more. This newsletter is funded through sales at RVbookstore.com, the World's Largest RV Bookstore specializing in books and DVDs about RVs and the RV lifestyle.
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By Chuck Woodbury
would like to write about my fondness for dirt. You may think that dirt
is a bad thing and wonder why I would write about such a subject. The
fact is, dirt is good in many ways. For example, it is necessary to
plant a garden. It's also the number one reason we own vacuum cleaners.
If you were a vacuum cleaner salesman, you would like dirt very much.
chose to write about dirt because of my dream last night. I dreamed of
when I was a little boy, digging tunnels with my pals in a vacant lot
near my home in suburban Los Angeles. The tunnels were like fox holes,
which we would cover with boards retrieved from nearby tract housing
developments. We would then cover the boards with
dirt. We would create vast networks of dark passageways, and if we were
lucky we could connect a few with a gopher's tunnel, making for an
all-natural intercom system. Always, we would dig a big meeting room,
where by candlelight we would eat potato chips and discuss kid stuff.
It was our dark and private world, off-limits to all grown-ups. I
remember one time when a buddy brought in a girlie magazine called
"Black Silk Stockings." We passed it around, wide-eyed at what we saw.
|Prairie Dogs like dirt, too.
recall with great fondness the smell of that earth. I also remember
above ground, when my buddies and I would smooth out miniature highways
where we would "drive" our toy cars and trucks on the packed dirt.
Driving has never been as good since: a kid's imagination is better
than any adult reality.
A few years ago, I was driving my
motorhome through farmland on a warm summer day, my windows open. As I
passed a farmer plowing a recently irrigated field, the strong smell of
the moist dirt blew right into my nose. It was very familiar. I inhaled
deeply. All of a sudden I was a kid again, back in that vacant lot,
playing with my pals. I felt instantly happy and content.
that's why I like dirt. Sure, it can cause a mess, I know that. My
philosophy is that you take the good with the bad. And if the bad is
worse than the good then you buy a vacuum cleaner and go on with your
Camp free and help kids with cancer
To save money on a campsite and do a good deed, take advantage of KOA's Come Camp & Care With Us
on the May 11-12 weekend. Campers who stay at participating KOA
Kampgrounds as paying guests on May 11 are eligible to stay free the
next night. The popular event, now in its fourth year, raises money for
KOA Care Camps which enable children with cancer to enjoy camping while
continuing their treatments. Last year's event raised more than
$100,000. The participating KOA Kampgrounds get booked up fast, so make
your reservation right away. Learn more and see a list of participating campgrounds.
DID YOU KNOW?
half (45%) of all RVtravel.com readers have owned a cell phone for more
than ten years. Only four percent bought their first cell phone within
the last two years. See the results of our survey.
Sixty foot long fifth wheel trailer?
RV blogger Jerry Brown ponders the Recreational Vehicle Industry's decision to promote federal legislation to increase the maximum size of fifth wheel
trailers from their present 400 square feet limit. He wonders whether
this will mean a 60-foot fifth wheel trailer. What do you think? Should
RV makers be permitted to make the RVs larger? Read Jerry's thoughts and then leave a comment.
The Fuel Efficient Motorhomes You'll Love to Drive! Learn all about them here.
Vote for your favorite RV place
your favorite RV place? Is it a state park, BLM land, national forest,
national park, private RV park, Corps of Engineers campground, stretch
of beach or someplace else? Blogger Jim Twamley has a favorite RV
place, and he wants to hear what yours is. To see where Jim would most
like to be and to cast your own vote, click here.
U.S. RV manufacturer to build travel trailers in Mexico
Enterprises Inc. will begin production in May in Mexicali, Mexico of two popular travel trailers.
Fleetwood reportedly pays full-time employees at its Southern
California facility about $20 an hour in wages and benefits, but will
pay $4 an hour in Mexico. Read more.
Cindy needs to quit RVing and get a hotel room
Check out this video by a new RVer named Cindy who is not a
happy camper. She's bored, the restaurant where she wants to eat is
closed, she thinks her husband will crash their motorhome and kill her,
and she has a big fight with him after he lets the cat get loose. Cindy
is not the poster lady for the RVing industry, that's for sure. See her tell her sad tale.
What's wrong with motorhomes here?
RVers blogger Adrienne Kristine has noticed something strange about
motorhomes in the RV park where she's staying. Have you noticed the
same thing at parks you visit? Are you perhaps one of the motorhome
owners she's talking about? Click here.
Did you miss last week's RV Travel newsletter? Read it here.
Pot of Gold Contest
Information about the contest is now in the right-hand margin of this newsletter.
2007 RV Show Schedule: We have updated our list of RV shows to include all those through June, 2007. Check in here to see where and when shows will be held in your area.
RV EzLevel - Level fast, accurate and easy.
Say goodbye to old fashioned bubble levels. The RVEzLevel is the fastest and easiest way to level your RV. Learn more here at RV Toy Outlet.
This Week's Reader Survey
How did you finance your current RV? Answer here.
Last week's survey question
How extensive is the tool kit you carry with you in your RV? See results.
Past reader surveys and results
Postcard of the Week
Here is proof
that just because a guy brags about something that seems too incredible
to be true that sometimes it really is true. Hey, do pictures on
Many to choose from. Check out the huge selection.
in our RV Travel Blogs
See the complete lineup of RV Travel blogs
FEATURED BLOG: RV Now: Fulltimer
Jim Twamley always has something fascinating to say about RVing. He's a
prolific blogger who passes along a tremendous amount of helpful
information about RVs and the RV lifestyle. Who else will explain to
you why the inside doors in RVs never reach all the way to the floor? Read his blog.
Fifth-wheel owners: this is for you
owners know that the area under the goose neck is a great place to stow
outdoor furniture and other items when it rains. But how do you keep
things dry there when the rain comes in sideways with the wind? Here's one solution.
How to keep pets and kids safely inside RVs
screen doors on RVs are awfully easy to open--too easy, in fact,
because dogs, cats and little kids can open them accidentally. Then the
pets can escape and the kids might fall out and get hurt. But Jim
Twamley knows how to keep a screen door securely closed. Click here to see what he does.
See a motorhome being made
this five minute promotional video from Alabama-based Tiffin, you will
see how one of its high-end motor coaches is assembled. It all begins
with the chassis and works up from there -- the floors, wiring,
cabinets, walls, the roof and eventually the finishing up process. Pretty neat.
Not reading the power meter at RV sites can cost you money
in the world would an RVer want to read the clock-type electric meter
many RV parks have installed at sites? Isn't that the manager's job?
Russ De Maris explains why not paying attention to the meter can cost you money.
Explorer RV Insurance
of motorhomes, travel trailers, fifth wheels and medium duty tow
vehicles save up to 15% over our largest competitors by tailoring their
coverage from over a dozen options. Learn more or get a quote.
Winter RV patrons to get special thank you in Mexico
winter, many of the snowbirds who boondock in the Quartzsite area visit
the Mexican border town of Los Algadones to shop. Now it's payback
time. Read how the community plans to thank its American patrons.
Who's NOT driving RVs?
Adrienne Kristine often frowns when she sees who's behind the wheel of an RV--or rather, who's NOT there. Click here to find out what her concern is.
Motorhome owners: Is this lightweight two-seater the perfect dinghy?
small, economical, two-seat car that's popular in Europe will soon be
available in the United States. Sounds like a great idea for motorhome
owners seeking a lightweight dinghy. Or is it? Better not plop down
your dollars before reading this.
It's true: Portable wine cellar debuts for RVs
you can have your wine and drink it too — in your RV, that is. A
special wine cellar allows you not only to store your favorite wine,
but to control the temperatures in various areas of the device. This is a nifty device.
Free Night of Camping at KOA
Camp two nights for the price of one and help a good cause. Learn how!
Problem: An IRS audit here, and you're RVing there
the April 15 tax deadline coming up, it's time to consider a dreaded
possibility: the audit. Suppose the IRS summons you for an audit to a
place far from where you plan to be RVing then? Getting the location
and date changed can be time-consuming and frustrating. Here's a better idea.
Stinky holding tank in your RV? Here's help
Yuck! RV holding tanks can stink. RV expert Mark Polk explains what causes holding tank odors and what you can do about them in this short educational video.
Great RV, great kitchen? Not necessarily
you like to cook, it makes sense to choose an RV with a well-designed
kitchen. You'd expect to find such a kitchen in any RV that has a great
reputation. But RVtravel.com editor Chuck Woodbury was disappointed in
the kitchen of one high-quality motorhome he traveled in recently. See which one, and why.
Gardening on the go: Yes, you can do it while RVing!Blue Ox adds heavy duty hitch to lineup
Do you love to grow a garden, but can't because you're on the road in
your RV? Well, Brent Peterson has news for you: you can travel with an
RV and keep a garden, too! Read more.
Blue Ox has added a premium heavy-duty hitch to its portfolio of
products. The Diamond Hitch is convenient to use, has impressive safety
features and is designed for easy installation. Read more.
Check out our RV Travel Forum discussions
Is This Rig Stable?
the RV show in Seattle last month, I looked at the 2008 Jayco Greyhawk
Class C which was 33 feet on a Kodiak chassis [or at least it had the
Chevy engine]. It appeared that the rear wheels were set in quite a way
from the back end of the rig. I realize that that is the bedroom area,
in which one doesn't speed a lot of time, but it looked quite unstable.
I know this is a new model but have others seen it?
Cell Phone Number
you changed legal residence when you went full-time, did you keep your
old cell phone number or set up a new number in the new state of
residence? Advantages or disadvantages?
Checking RV Park Polarity
have read in several magazines/books that there is a tester you can buy
(Camping World?) to test if the campground electrical outlets are wired
correctly. I have found one for 15 amp, but what do I use for 30 and 50 amp?
RVing in Mexico
Read articles by Mexican RV experts Bill and Dot Bell. Includes many reader questions and answers. Click here.
is THE place to finance or refinance an RV
ORIGINAL and LARGEST RV financing company on the Internet! Lowest RV
financing Rates Nationwide! Call Today: 1-888-929-4424 or click here.
RVers who like searching for buried treasure should try this
a high-tech form of hide and seek. It involves some traveling and some
hiking. It's mentally challenging and fun for the whole family. What is it?
Is hard water damaging your RV's plumbing system?
you know that the "hard," or mineral-rich water found in some parts of
the country can damage an RV's plumbing system? The water leaves
deposits inside pipes and can even eat through fittings. Blogger Russ De Maris offers one solution.
Life on Wheels conferences offer RVers a valuable helping hand
you're fairly new to fulltiming or RVing in general, it might be time
to go back to school--the fun kind. Life on Wheels is an annual RV
conference held in several locations around the country, featuring
classes on many aspects of RVing. Taught by RVing experts, the classes
can save beginners a lot of mistakes and headaches. Click here to read more.
"Beer doesn't make you fat. It makes you lean (against doors, tables, walls)."
Read other funny bumper stickers or buy them
How much money will you need for fulltiming?
How do you budget for fulltiming? It's a difficult question, since each RVer's situation and needs are different. Russ De Maris
has found a handy two-page budget form that will let you compare your
current expenses with those you'll have on the road. The numbers will
help you decide whether or not you'll need to work a bit while
fulltiming. Click here.
Camping clubs are good for some RVers, bad for others
camping clubs: Are they for you? That depends on how you RV. Some RVers
swear by such clubs, others swear at them. For insight on membership
camping clubs, as well as an alternative idea, Click here.
RVers can save $$$$ by working on the road
camping is usually thought of as making money on the road, but it can
also mean saving money through job perks and discounts. Jaimie Hall
describes some of the ways that RVers can save by working.
Ouch! A moment of inattention, a remedy for the future
Blogger Jerry Brown forgot to lower the tailgate of his pickup truck while unhitching. Ouch! Read what the moment of inattention prompted him to buy.
Like a morning cup of coffee in your RV? Try this
Little conveniences can make RVing even more enjoyable. Here's a great new product for coffee drinkers.
In Tennessee, the stage is set for you!
Let your interests be your guide to vacationing in Tennessee. Finalize your outings and hammer out all the driving details - all online. Once you have made your selections and built your vacation, forget your worries and stress. Come unwind in Tennessee.
One contest on SUNDAY
-- The new book The ABCs of RVing by Jerry Brown and Chuck Woodbury
Start time: CONTEST POSTPONED because of technical problems.
Quiz begins at exactly the time above and not a second before.
Knowledge Quiz official rules
there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid
people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions?" -- Scott Adams
Read back issues of the RV Travel newsletter. Click here.
Random RV Thought
RV dealers are advertising payment plans where you put no money down on
a new RV and finance it for a long time. Sure, the payments are low.
But if you decide to sell your RV after only four or five years you
will almost certainly owe more than the RV is worth after its
depreciation. The sad result: You will have to pay a dealer or
whoevever buys your RV to take it off your hands -- and sometimes that
can be tens of thousands of dollars. So be careful.
Buying an RV?
Don't plop down your hard-earned cash without reading RV Travel editor Chuck Woodbury's new eBook, Buying an RV the Smart Way.
For $9.95, you'll learn how to save money and avoid making buying
mistakes that could cause big headaches later. The eBook is emailed to
you immediately after ordering, and can be read online or printed out.
Covers buying both new and used RVs.
RV Travel staff
Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Contributors: Russ and Tina De Maris, Gerry Bruder, Jim Twamley, Jerry Brown, Jaimie Hall, Brent Peterson. Forum Administrator: Adrienne Kristine. Office Manager: Jody Allcott. Fulfillment Assistant: Erin Hanson. Web Operations Director: Zoey Platt. Clapper Loader: Emily Woodbury.
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