Our Play Pac Adventure! - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-04-2011, 12:27 AM   #1
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Our Play Pac Adventure!

well, we made the trip and are finally home. a little tired and poor - but never happier! we absolutely love our new (old) Play Pac. it performed like a champ for us. we drove up to Port Orford from Monterey and decided to get a jump and go half way the first night. we stopped in Garberville and found a delightful little roach motel. when the owner gives you a key and says 'go check it out first'- i was thinking 'why, is it a crime scene?' - he said 'well, sometimes people smoke in there and sometimes they dont.' so i open the door to the world's largest ash tray and think - sometimes they dont smoke? like the seconds between putting out a cigarette and lighting another one? after some crazy Chinese food and sleeping in our sleeping bag, we headed north to meet Steve and our new Play Pac.

when we arrived, we met Steve (and Eve) and he gave me a very thorough tour of the trailer. they are a really sweet couple who really enjoy life, each other, and the outdoors. after i asked him about a million questions, we loaded up and drove right to Cape Blanco in search of a camp spot and itching to get to know our new friend. what a gorgeous campground! immaculate bathrooms and friendly staff. sites were very private. at that time i began my very detailed inspection of the trailer since i wanted to know every last bit of it and i was mostly hoping beyond hope i might find an alternative VIN location to help out Meghan. found the VIN and drove off to send the message. when i got back we did a light cleaning and began populating the Play Pac with all of our 'stuff'!

we cooked dinner and sat by the campfire and just stared at it forever. so very content at long last. we headed off the next day to Humbug State Park (beautiful beach!), then Redwood National Park (gorgeous but hot!) and just at the half-way home mark, i noticed the truck was running pretty hard. i normally try to only stop for gas - and do everything then, but i uncharacteristically stopped with half a tank thinking earlier 'i cant believe how smooth this trip has gone' ... luckily i was not let down. at the gas station i looked down at the rear tire and it looked like the Hunchback of Notre Dame. i could see the shiny rubber and it must have only been a few millimeters thick - completely bald and warped. my wife found a local tire shop and they had our tire but were closing in 10 minutes. they stayed open for us and told me the radials had separated and the rubber was all that was holding the tire together. 15-20 miles more and it would have exploded.

needless to say by the time we got to Sonoma State Beach campground - i felt like jumping in the ocean to cool down. i was just happy we avoided a total disaster or at the least some kind of serious damage to our new addition! we slept parked with the beach in view like babies that night - exhausted and grateful for the bullet we had dodged. after a nice beach walk in the morning with coffee and hosting a few tours (it was the hit of EVERY campground!) we made the final stretch home and got the little fella parked in the egg nest at long last after 5 days of camping and 1100+ miles.

other fun facts - Steve's solar work was fantastic. the battery was topped off no matter how many LEDs we had running - even with the fan when it was hot. we met John and Michelle at Del Norte Campground (Redwoods) - they have a beautiful 2-toned blue Boler. a great couple who are members here too! most important is my wife is over 6 months pregnant and she did the whole trip like a champ - she had an absolute blast and just loves the Play Pac!

anyway - we are so stoked about our Play Pac. it needs some work and such, but its so ready to go and most of what we would do can be done between and during trips. also - the space is unreal. so much of it! we cooked every night and had wonderful meals then giggled at how big our bed was - practically queen size (71x77"!)

ok - well, thats our maiden voyage trip report. i will be starting some updating and renovation soon - so stay tuned. in the meantime, here are some other photos from our trip.
thanks for reading!

we just named it - becuase it holds all our stuff, is portable and light and is always behind our truck .... we are proud to present:

THE 'BAC PAC!'


photos:
#1 the hand off from Steve
#2-4 enjoying Cape Blanco
#5-6 enjoying Humbug State Park
#7-8 enjoying Wright's Beach Sonoma
#8 Sunset at Cape Blanco - taken by a pro testing out his new camera!
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Old 08-04-2011, 05:55 AM   #2
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Alright Paul Great maiden voyage report! And so very lucky about the tire.

Thanks for the photos!!
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Old 08-04-2011, 08:08 AM   #3
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Cape Blanco

Great first trip.

Port Orford is one of our favorite little towns and Cape Blanco a marvelous spot, well representative of the Oregon coast.

There's another neat little day park just north of downtown found by driving to the end of county road 244. The beach below the sand cliff is known for polished agate stones that can be found after a tide change or better a storm.

I warn, heed the rogue wave signs. One day, alone hunting for agates I had my back to the waves, at least 20 feet from the water line and all of a sudden I my 6'1' frame was totally under water being pulled to the sea. I never turn my back anymore.

A neat place in Port Orford is the Crazy Norwegian, a small restuarant.

On our loop of the USA we'll definitely be stopping at Port Orford once again.

Thanks for awakening memories and the best of luck with your new rig, and better yet with your coming child. Bless you all.

Norm
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Old 08-04-2011, 09:51 AM   #4
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Our yard seems empty!

With the Play Pac gone, our yard seems so empty! Sure glad you had a good time up here and a safe (barely) trip home. I look forward to your updates Paul, we'll miss it, but know she's in good hands. Bac Pac sounds much better than Hitch Hut!

The day use park is Paradise Point, one of our favorite spots to agate hunt. We go there nearly every time there's a good minus tide, since we only live about 4 miles away. If lower than -1.5, especially if -2.0 or lower, the hunting can be fantastic. There's a spot about 1/2 mile walk north that we call "Bulging Pockets Point". We now have over 9 gallons of agates and have been thinking about forming a new AAA club, Agate Addicts Annonymous

The Crazy Norwegian's has great food. Some of the best fish and chips you'll find anywhere. In all our talk, I forgot to mention it to Paul, dang it, guess they'll just have to come up here again.

By the way, now that we have a motorhome of sorts, I'm wondering if our Toyota Sunrader rates as a fiberglass RV? The Sunrader is a 2 piece fiberglass shell on a Toyota truck base.

Steve
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Old 08-04-2011, 10:37 AM   #5
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thanks Donna and Norm for all of the kind words and reflections! Steve, it was a great trip and we did actually pop right over to that beach you and Norm mention. i think thats where Battle Rock is if my limited memory of the area serves me correctly.

we just stopped at Ray's grocery to load up on provisions since we were so eager to get 'camping!' ... i know there will certainly be a next time as we plan for a big trip up to Vancouver Island and other points. we shall stop in of course, to say hi and show you how your little beauty is coming along. maybe then we can even check out the town - we saw nice little galleries and cafes and since we cant wait to take the 'Bac Pac' on another adventure - hopefully it will be sooner than later!

and i would say YES to the Sunrader - it's glass and qualifies (and is very, very cool - thanks again for the tour!). you are just lucky enough to have it permanently hitched to your Tow vehicle!
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Old 08-04-2011, 11:31 AM   #6
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Just so you all know of our "secret" agate hunting spot, it is north of town. When you leave Port Orford, you cross a bridge, just as the speed limit goes up to 45mph. Shortly, there's a left turn lane, which leads you to Paradise Point. It is about a mile out this road and there's a large gravel parking area with a nice ocean view.

With the Sunrader, we like to back in, then when we get back, wet, sandy, and sometimes cold, we can sit in comfort, drinking coffee and watching the waves, gulls, pelicans and seals.

Speaking of speed limits, Port Orford is often known as a " Speed Trap" town. I don't think this is true, although there are a lot of speeding tickets given out. The highway splits the town and goes from 2 lane to 4 lane through here. The limit is 30 mph and 20 in the school zone when the lights are flashing.

There is a lot of warning prior to the lower speed limits. Since there are a whole lot of crosswalks children and tourists, even horse riders, the folks who barrel through at 45 and even 65-70 deserve the tickets they get! So do watch your speed in our small town!

Steve
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Old 08-04-2011, 01:56 PM   #7
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We spent considerable time in Port Orford, always in the spring. Our first time the lights as you enter town were flashing warning there were high winds on the coast road so we spent three days in a campground there. We considered our self fortunate because as a result we found this little jewel.

The first day we were there we went out to Cape Blanco. The winds were 105 mph, the highest in the country that day. You could barely open the car doors and once outside you almost could not fall over leaning in to the wind.

Actually Cape Blanco is the only place I've ever seen remote controlled model gliders, riding the winds that hit the cliffs there.

Anyone driving fast on the coast of Oregon is missing one of the nicest rides in America.

Norm


As to a speed trap, we've spent probably 2-3 weeks there without incident.
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Old 08-05-2011, 01:21 PM   #8
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I have very much enjoyed your story and how I became part of it! I am telling it to all my friends! I cant tell you how much I look forward to hearing about all your adventures!!! ps I met my boyfriend in CA (LA) and we cant wait to someday be able to live there! Maybe we will end up 2 play pacs in the same campground when we are all retired!!!
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Old 08-05-2011, 01:48 PM   #9
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Neat Report & Photos, Thanks for Sharing. Very neat areas to do camping. Wouldn't mind being there right now. We've had tire trouble in the past, more than once. Not fun for sure.

Enjoy the egg.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:45 AM   #10
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thanks Adrian ... yeah i feel very lucky to be right here in the middle of the west coast. we have a lot of options just minutes away (heading to Big Sur next weekend with the Bac Pac for an overnighter and its only a half-hour drive). and i absolutely cannot wait to take this bad-boy over to Yosemite (my favorite place on this circular cosmic spot) which is only a few hours drive, and a beautiful drive at that.

Meghan - you are definfetly part of our short history now!
its things like your VIN saga, or the filthy motel we had to use our sleeping bags in, or our tire looking like it was about to give birth ... these all make for wonderful memories by the campfire ... er, after the fact of course!

anyway, we will certainly look forward to having our very own 2-family Play Pac reunion out here somewhere in the west one day! at he very least, it will be an easy rally to plan!
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Old 08-21-2011, 11:18 AM   #11
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Trip Report: Big Sur

hey everyone, a week late but i dove-tailed an over-nighter with a week-long trip for work so i just got back and can sit down to report. last Saturday we wanted to take the Bac Pac out for a night to celebrate my lovely wife's birthday and our (possibly!) last trip as a couple ... baby will be here in 2 months! since she is very pregnant, it seems i did all the celebrating, but she had a blast nonetheless.

we knew fully that Big Sur was packed - every campground was full when we went online but we figured we have some good luck and were not afraid of striking out since home is only a half hour drive. i never pay attention to 'FULL' signs either. i find that if you at least talk to a camp host ... something might shake loose. we get to my favorite campground in Big Sur (FULL) and i said "lets just stay positive, maybe we'll get lucky" ... the girl at the gate asked if we had a reservation and we said no, we were just wondering if we could be put on a waiting list? (you say this as humbly as possible). she looks around and says "hang on" talks to the girl next to her and says "any dogs and is it just you two?" "nope, just us and our teeny-tiny little fiberglass trailer - isn't it adorable?!"
she says "well we have a reservation that did not show yesterday, and we said we would give it up if they didn't show by noon today - it is now 12:07 so its yours if you want and its right on the river" ... VICTORY! as if that wasnt good enough, i jokingly blurted out "is it by chance site #99" (my favorite spot - since childhood), she said "actually it is!" DOUBLE PLUS GOOD!

we were set up in 10 minutes and my feet were in the river in 10 more. watching the kids go by floating on tubes. we sat in the sun next to a grove of redwoods and just relaxed. did nothing - read, listened to the birds and took a couple of strolls, made a fantastic birthday dinner and slept like i only sleep when i can hear a river running by right outside my window. we packed up after a lazy breakfast and coffee and then as soon i got the Bac Pac into its house, i had to head off for a longer drive to Stanford for some work training. but what a way to go into a week of intense work - completely relaxed. we love this thing. even joked about going back this weekend. life is good!

a couple of snaps ... sorry only thing i forgot was my camera so the phone had to suffice:
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Old 08-21-2011, 11:43 AM   #12
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The phone pics worked just fine... thanks for sharing. See, see.. things happen for a reason and you got the campsite you really wanted. Good for you and the wife too for thinking ahead and having a wonderful rollin' home to share memories with your soon-to-be-addition to the family.
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Old 08-21-2011, 11:44 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Chet View Post
Trip Report: Big Sur

hey everyone, a week late but i dove-tailed an over-nighter with a week-long trip for work so i just got back and can sit down to report. last Saturday we wanted to take the Bac Pac out for a night to celebrate my lovely wife's birthday and our (possibly!) last trip as a couple ... baby will be here in 2 months! since she is very pregnant, it seems i did all the celebrating, but she had a blast nonetheless.

we knew fully that Big Sur was packed - every campground was full when we went online but we figured we have some good luck and were not afraid of striking out since home is only a half hour drive. i never pay attention to 'FULL' signs either. i find that if you at least talk to a camp host ... something might shake loose. we get to my favorite campground in Big Sur (FULL) and i said "lets just stay positive, maybe we'll get lucky" ... the girl at the gate asked if we had a reservation and we said no, we were just wondering if we could be put on a waiting list? (you say this as humbly as possible). she looks around and says "hang on" talks to the girl next to her and says "any dogs and is it just you two?" "nope, just us and our teeny-tiny little fiberglass trailer - isn't it adorable?!"
she says "well we have a reservation that did not show yesterday, and we said we would give it up if they didn't show by noon today - it is now 12:07 so its yours if you want and its right on the river" ... VICTORY! as if that wasnt good enough, i jokingly blurted out "is it by chance site #99" (my favorite spot - since childhood), she said "actually it is!" DOUBLE PLUS GOOD!

we were set up in 10 minutes and my feet were in the river in 10 more. watching the kids go by floating on tubes. we sat in the sun next to a grove of redwoods and just relaxed. did nothing - read, listened to the birds and took a couple of strolls, made a fantastic birthday dinner and slept like i only sleep when i can hear a river running by right outside my window. we packed up after a lazy breakfast and coffee and then as soon i got the Bac Pac into its house, i had to head off for a longer drive to Stanford for some work training. but what a way to go into a week of intense work - completely relaxed. we love this thing. even joked about going back this weekend. life is good!

a couple of snaps ... sorry only thing i forgot was my camera so the phone had to suffice:
What a neat story! Thanks!! Made my day!
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Old 08-22-2011, 01:03 PM   #14
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I live in Winston Salem, North Carolina and have just recently bought a Play Pac Hitch Hut (year unknown). It has been completely gutted. I am in the process of getting the title and will shortly begin renovation. I have been doing some research on this camper and have realized I have just joined an rare group of travel trailer owners.

I was hoping for some advice and pointers concerning this renovation. Please respond with tips thank you.
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