Safety in campgrounds - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-05-2003, 01:34 PM   #29
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We take our annual 2-week vacation on a $600 budget. We live in Indiana, and have been to Maine, Smokie Mtns, UP Michigan, all the way around Lake Superior, and more. We're going to Colorado this year. $600 a pop. Two weeks. This includes campsites, entry fees, activities, ferrys, and whatever gas and eating out we wouldn't have normally spent during that two weeks. Try THAT in motels!

We recently went to Dallas for a week. We stayed one night in a motel each direction. We paid about $75 a night along the interstate, and these were disappointing rooms. Also disturbingly unclean. The continental breakfast was inedible both mornings. We ate meals in restaurants both ways, four days total, for over $200 in meals. Fortunately, we had free housing while in Dallas, or the housing while there, assuming we stayed in $75 rooms, would have cost an additional $450, and meals, an additional $325, for just one week. So, this trip has a "motel equivalent" cost of $1125 for one week. It would have cost us, based on our proven annual average, just about $300 to camp it. So, in one week, we saved over $800. I paid $850 when I bought my Scamp.

Regarding safety, I don't have hard numbers to quote, but I'll bet my fillings that more crime is committed in motels than campgrounds. Also, as noted, in a motel, you are shut in your room and isolated from everyone else. What takes place in your room is unknown to everybody else, including theft, rape and murder. In a campground, unless you are really boondocking, there are usually other like-minded people keeping an eye out for you. I routinely guide other people's kids away from dangers, and if I saw someone loading up my neighbor's stuff, I'd saunter on over and "introduce myself".

Speaking of introducing myself, on our various camping trips, we have met numerous people who have really enriched our experiences. I have lots of memories. And, most of my fond memories of my childhood revolve around family camping.

I don't carry weapons. Nor do I feel the need. The only times I've had stuff stolen has been while at rest areas or truck stops, where I'd be anyway. And, frankly, my stuff is worth less than the risks of weaponry. If I pull a gun in defense (I'm not certified, but I'm a pretty good shot), I'm gambling that the other guy doesn't also have a gun, and that if he does, I'm faster than him. Too chancy. If he wants my stuff badly enough to pull a gun, he can have it. I hope he won't shoot me (hey - I'm being cooperative!), but if he does, oh well. If he goes for my wife or daughter, he'll go through me first, at which point I can only trust God for their safety (which is exactly what I need to be doing from the get-go).

Would I trade my camper for a lifetime pass to Super 8? Aint no way!!!
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Old 05-05-2003, 07:33 PM   #30
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Motels/hotels vs. trailer

I am not yet a trailer owner, but I did a lot of trailer travel with my family growing up and I have done a lot of budget travel in skeezy hotels when I am traveling off season or too chicken to sleep alone in a tent. Most were not that bad, a few became fodder for my travel adventure stories as I played "what's that smell?", "is that hair in the tub?" and "was that a NOISE?" I stayed in a particularly memorable place near the NJ turnpike where the door didn't lock, the clientele looked like entrepreneurs, and the whole place was so skeezy we all slept in sleeping bags (there were three of us and a dog, when the car broke down this place was our only choice!). I also really enjoyed explaining to the ditzy hotel manager (at a reasonably nice hotel in Williamsburg) that it IS possible to find a BEDBUG on the FLOOR! (I wonder if she ever understood what I was trying to say???) :o

I agree with previous posts about cost. Almost anything has a cost spectrum. My boss refuses to stay in anything less than a Hilton and most of those are below his standards (yet he tries to tell me he is a simple farm-boy). His vacation cost thousands more than mine, but I see a lot more than he does. I have a friend who bought a brand new camping van for $55,000. After ten years she and her kids have crisscrossed the country and seen almost every state in it. They paid much more than I can afford, but they have gotten their money's worth.

I am hoping to move up to trailer camping for several reasons:

10. I do think I'll save money based on even cheap hotel rooms because I am buying used and I plan to use the trailer for a long time. I also plan some extended stays or possibly living in it while I do volunteer work. :sunny

9. I get really tired of fast food when I am on the road longer than the icechest will stay cold. I know I'll save money on food and eat healthier with my own kitchen. And I am tired of playing "did the melted ice actually seep into this container or was the yogurt always this runny?" :sad

8. I want to do at least some travel (and move cross-country) with my parrots and they are unsafe in a tent or the car.

7. I am sick of trying to find hotels that will take my dog:omy

6. I am sick of begging to get into a hotel with the dog and the bird then panicking every time one of them makes a noise:O

5. I like sleeping in the same bed no matter what state or province I am in.:zz

4. What looks like a town on the map of South Dakota might not be an actual town in the sense of having a place one can stop to pee at midnight and when since there is little cover in the prairie even a quick "field stop" can get mighty embarassing as trucks come barreling through every few seconds. :red

3. I'd rather have my kids/dog/parrots/me on bedspreads that have only sand/dog hair/parrot poop than whatever the previous occupants left on them. :sick

2. I'll never really be homeless again no matter how many times I move to a new place. :lol

1. I want to see and experience the world rather than watch it on tv! I am really puzzled by people who think the vacation is all about having cable and a pool. :reye2
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Old 05-06-2003, 02:20 AM   #31
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JR Holland

JR,

That was excellent (as was all the other ones on this thread)!

Well did I open a floodgate or what? :lol

Tax writeoff and Extra-room are two wonderful ideas to remember....

Now the writeoff is interest only - n'est ce pas?

That means I have to have a loan on one? Used ones bought with cash don't qualify?
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Old 05-06-2003, 01:23 PM   #32
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Interest write off

>>Now the writeoff is interest only - n'est ce pas?


Oui!
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Old 05-06-2003, 01:24 PM   #33
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Business purposes

If you used it strictly for business, that might be a different story. Just like you can write off your business expenses when traveling.....I dunno, check with the tax man first.
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Old 05-06-2003, 02:20 PM   #34
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Write-off

Mine is, along with my road expenses as well.
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Old 05-06-2003, 02:35 PM   #35
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Safety and economics of campers

Economics of buying a camper:
It's even cheaper to stay home and never do anything (Probably what your friends indeed are doing). :)
If you're only using it one weekend a year at a site 1500 miles away from home - they are probably right. But if you're using it regularly, it makes more sense. More importantly - it depends on what you want to do. I personally enjoy camping more than 'moteling'. It's an experience, not just a warm bed.

Safety:
In my experience - most criminal types are pathetic slobs who certainly aren't gonna commute out into the sticks for a few hours in order to steal some beer, hot dogs and maybe a propane tank. At a campground, you're a LOT more likely to be the victim of a raccoon than a human.

mkw
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Old 05-06-2003, 03:15 PM   #36
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Pathetic slobs

Maybe. But keep in mind that some of those pathetic slobs already live in the sticks, as you call 'em, and don't have far to commute. Like everyone else's our camping adventures have been remarkable pleasant and safe. But I never will forget a terrifying incident quite a few years ago when some local rowdies in a scruffy jeep decided they would head down to the remote campground for some drunken "fun." By sheer good luck nobody got hurt, or worse, but as I said my wife and I won't forget it. And it won't ever happen again.
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Old 05-06-2003, 07:43 PM   #37
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motel vs rv

Hi Bill, to your original question on vs.

Have you and your buddies take a room in a motel for a night. When the lights are down thrown on a black light ( ultraviolet ) and have a look at what you are sharing the room with.:m

I think your buddies might buy an rv too! A place that you can call your own...anytime...anywhere.

Happy Trails.... and welcome.

Mike
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Old 05-07-2003, 12:01 AM   #38
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Quote:
Orginally posted by Mike T



Have you and your buddies take a room in a motel for a night. When the lights are down thrown on a black light ( ultraviolet ) and have a look at what you are sharing the room with.:m

I
Hi ..I think that you hit the nail on the head.....Been there...Benny
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Old 05-07-2003, 12:12 AM   #39
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Quote:
Orginally posted by Robert Brummett
But I never will forget a terrifying incident quite a few years ago when some local rowdies in a scruffy jeep decided they would head down to the remote campground for some drunken "fun." By sheer good luck nobody got hurt, or worse, but as I said my wife and I won't forget it. And it won't ever happen again.
this reminds me of a story.
My husband used to work for USDA. they helped build some of the lakes and ponds and rec. areas. well anyway. one area was being harassed by kids and young people on motorcycles. they would drive through tents and knock stuff over. so one night when they came though the campers were ready. they placed a tent over one of the concrete tables. made the young people take notice. course they would get sued now days.
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Old 05-07-2003, 12:35 AM   #40
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Re: At a campground, you're a LOT more likely to be the victim of a raccoon than a human.

Been there - Sue still thinks I ate all those Double Chocolate cookies on our trip to the Oregon coast...

:)
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Old 05-08-2003, 02:06 PM   #41
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Safety: Raccoons, Ticks and BEARS!

I have lived in the Washington DC metro area for about 10 years. I have been fortunate to have had only a few scary experiences here (not counting the daily risk of driving here which has taken years off my life!!!). When my mother questioned my wisdom in heading off alone in a trailer I started laughing. Yes, there are risks in traveling alone, but I figure I am statistically safer on the road with a little care than I am in some of the neighborhoods I have called home. (anyone been wakened in a campground by the police searching under your window for the weapon from a knife-fight?).

I have driven about 15,000 miles alone or with a few friends, camping or staying in little cheap motels and never had a problem. I have been threatened or harassed in small "safe" towns I have lived in and big cities like NY and DC. The only time I have had safety issues when traveling has been when I have been on the road for business and done things that most city dwellers consider safe, such as taking cabs or walking in well-traveled areas. On the road, though, I have only run into 4 and 6 legged critters.

An old roommate and I went on a power-camping trip (5 days, 4 states) a few years ago through the Smokies and along the NC/SC coast. First we stopped in the Smokies where the signs everywhere warned not to feed the bears. We saw none.

Second stop was the beautiful SC coast. Beautiful RV park full of snowbirds not yet headed north. The signs warned not to feed the raccoons. Who is afraid of raccoons? I'd camped for years and never seen one. After dinner I headed off to take a shower. When I returned from the bath house in the last light of the setting sun I found my parole officer friend sitting on the picnic table throwing pinecones at the raccons. There were at least 6 FAT raccoons circling the remains of our dinner. They clearly had no fear of humans. I swear some of those beasties weighed over 40 lbs. They looked like they were inflated. No doubt they lived well off of handouts and trash from the residents of the park. The more pinecones she threw the closer they got because they seemed to understand that eventually she'd run out of pinecones and have to start throwing food.

The next night we set up camp in the NC forests. Signs there warned not to feed the ticks. I needn't have worried. The Carolina mosquitos had already sucked all the blood out of me. I had 47 bites by then. (By the way, it is unwise to cover more than 20% of your body in Benadryl cream - causes major drowsiness!).We saw not a single tick.

Safety issues can come from anywhere, but with a certain amount of prudence (and luck!) you'll run into fewer problems outside of cities than in them.
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