The Upside of Trailer Travel and Camping - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-09-2015, 06:25 PM   #29
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Name: Norm and Ginny
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Originally Posted by George in New Mex View Post
Thanks for starting this thread. It's really encouraging to a newbie who hasn't bought a trailer yet, but is looking forward to retirement travel. I read about hassles with hitches, black tanks, etc, but all of them are nullified by these posts!
George,

Hitches, black tank dumping, backing up are overstated as problems. The hitch is really easy to connect and easier since the advent of backup cameras, black tank dumping is easy and takes less time than it takes to go to the bathroom, backing up is just experience and taking it slow.

It's like all new tasks, it just takes a little time. Our first trip when we bought a trailer was to Labrador, after a couple of weeks we were fine.

There's a sense of peace when traveling. We have felt blessed to be able to do it for 15 years.

Wayne,
What's the location of your picture?
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Old 06-10-2015, 07:41 AM   #30
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From Dennis MN...

Dennis wrote "it is sleeping in our own bed".

I believe there's a level of comfort to the known. We sleep in our own bed even when camping in the yard of friends and relatives. Though it's a small bed, it's ours and we've achieved a high level of comfort in that bed. I don't know that we sleep better in any other location. Possibly it's because of the lack of stress in our typical day or the wonders we fall asleep thinking about or because of the fresh air tiredness we feel.

Though compared to our home we have very little, a small fridge, no microwave, no mixer, few of the every home has at least one appliances, we find we're just fine. Our simpler life is not a 'deprived life' but rather a full life, it's amazing how little we need.

My brother is fond of saying "we eat to live, not live to eat". We have not fully succeeded in adopting this phrase but at least it's in our heads. A life of fun activity, of rising early and going to bed early, all contribute to eating less.

As we clean out our home we are amazed at all we've accumulated. The process of cleaning out the house is full of 'look at what we own surprises', mostly stuff we haven't used in 15 years on the road and won't use in the future. One of our best RV friends carries a color matched set of earrings and jewelry for every outfit. Ginny has simplified the jewelry to a few basic pieces, she's no longer dressing for others. If she were to wear the same thing every day only I would know.

Friends are off to Newfoundland in August. I've been sending them small tips, where to get good multi-grain home made bread, or to pickup a couple dockside boiled lobsters... as I write to them I'm straining at the bit to join them on the road. Life is so kind and uncomplicated in our little Scamp, little but big enough.
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Old 06-10-2015, 08:06 AM   #31
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Exposure to new places, ways and people

A story of why we travel.

Driving one of Newfoundland’s side roads we saw two women working a small just off the road 20 x 50 foot garden. The soil was near black and looked moist and rich. One woman was returning from the stream carrying a red plastic bucket of water. In our early days of Newfoundland travel you would see these roadside gardens all over, not directly associated with a home, just in a sunny spot beside the road.

I turned around and parked my car and Ginny and I walked over to learn about roadside gardens.

The woman told us this had been their great uncle’s garden but he was no longer able to manage it. They had no property rights to their garden, just the tradition of use, over 50 years of use.

They had just planted their root crops, carrots, potatoes, beets as well as some cabbage. Potatoes are planted in raised rows. Between the rows I noticed about 50 little pails embedded in the soil with their tops flush with the soil. The woman was filling each bucket half full with water. These were mouse traps to prevent the mice from eating the seed potatoes, once in never out. So much to learn….

Everywhere you travel there are little wonders, some approach the unbelievable like the cutting of the Grand Canyon others like the roadside garden just stimulate your life. I’ll hold memories of both forever.

When we started our adventure we had no idea what RV travel would be like. We had no idea of the vast number of places there are to see, after 15 years there’s still so much known to us but not seen… yet.

You start your travels looking for wonder like a wandering. innocent child, growing with experience and knowledge. Life is there and there and there…. you sometimes need to stop, be friendly and show a little interest.
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Old 06-10-2015, 10:24 AM   #32
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Name: Patrick
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This post made me think back to our first big trip in our Sunline TT, pulled by a Jeep Cherokee, vintage 1987.
Our family had been doing weekend camping for two years while I planned our "Trip of a lifetime". Starting in Connecticut and covering most of the National Parks and sights in the West. My wife, a school teacher had much of the summer off and I managed to save up a months vacation time for our big adventure with our two children. My wife turned the trip into a learning experience.
Planning was much harder before the Internet. Calling and mailing to reserve places like Yellowstone National Park and such.
This epic trip covered 7,561 miles...starting in costal Connecticut on
July 10,1987 and ending Aug 7,1987...it covered over 22 states and too many National Parks to include here. I did keep a journal and an expense log for the trip and the records reveal a lot of interesting data about costs.
I was suprised to see what the totals were in 1987 dollars and I will share some numbers with you and suggest you keep a journal of your travels too!
They are fun to read 20 or 30 years later!
First the grand total for the complete trip including food, gas, maintenance and repairs including tires, campground fees, park entrance fees, cost for Pike's Peak Cog-Railway transportation to the summit and a few trinkets we purchased along the way! We even included a few trips to the laundry at a few campgrounds!
Total cost: $2,115.96......remember the good old days!
Average campground fees for full hook-up sites were an amazing $10.50 (low) up to high of $15.75 per night.
I failed to record both the cost of gas per gallon or my gas mileage feeding a
4.0 Ltr 6 CYL engine...however...the total gas cost for the trip was $603.59.
Special thanks to my wife for keeping a record of every penny we spent on the big adventure. Campground total was $429.96. A 20lb propane fill-up back in 1987 was $5.00 in case you were wondering. A replacement spare tire and wheel (used) was $26.74.
During the trip in the desert we lost a tire to a blowout in the middle of nowhere on Indian reservation land. We also had to get the trailer brakes repaired and an oil change while spending 5 days in Yellowstone. Another flat trailer tire on the return trip back in Ohio.
Our two children (Matthew and Lauren) both kept journals and we took about 8 hours of video covering the complete trip so we can revisit the entire adventure whenever we want to!
Upsides to RV Trailer travel and camping...I guess I could list a few...and then there was that trip down south to Colonial Williamsburg and the great smokey mountains...but I'll save that for another time.

Happy Camping A!
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Old 06-10-2015, 10:57 AM   #33
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Freedom!
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Old 06-10-2015, 12:19 PM   #34
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A Thought

Patrick...

Another view of your trip. You drove a lot of miles in a month, almost 8,000. Of course I understand why and only wish I had been smart enough to make that choice while young.

In our first of 6 loops of the USA we towed 8,000 miles over 8 months, so we bought the same order of gas as you did for your 1 month trip.. (We also probably drove another 8,000 miles exploring.) My point is that when you travel extensively the amount of gas purchased per day is substantially less.

In 2008 we did a two month trip up the west coast of Newfoundland across Labrador and back thru Quebec to NH where gas was the order of $5 a gallon. If I recall we drove 4000 miles over 60 days averaging just 60 miles a day. In 2 months, without looking it up I believe we spent no more than $5000 and probably less.

If you're a slow traveler, as we tend to be, gas per day drops to a relatively small amount. If you camp carefully is still possible to camp inexpensively.
Though most things have increased in cost it's still possible to camp for reasonable fees as a senior in COE parks with hookups.


Safe travels, it's great to accumulate travel memories...our first trailer loop of the USA was in a 1982 Sunline 15.5, a great little trailer
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Old 06-10-2015, 02:25 PM   #35
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Norm & Ginny,

I would have loved to have been able to "take it slow" and drive less miles per day and take more time doing it....but....my continued employment would have suffered.

The trip we did take included at lot of prime locations...The problem back then was wanting to see a lot in just one very action packed month...plenty of hard driving and tight schedules to get it all in on a limited time frame. I would love to do it again and slow it down as you do now but alas! my wife has this "been there, done that...why do it again" view of life....not my view but hers.
I want to spend some quality time revisiting the Maine coast but my wife feels we have been there in the past so why bother....I am currently trying to sell her on the idea of a few weeks touring Nova Scotia but that requires an overnight or two in Maine and she suspects my motives.

I may end up taking the trailer and going off solo as the clock is ticking and I am not going to live forever! You and Ginny have the right mind set. Who knows one day I might talk my wife into doing a few of our trips of yesteryear once again in slow motion, driving less each day sounds great to me!

Enjoy your retirement years and Happy Camping!
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Old 06-10-2015, 03:56 PM   #36
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Twizzlers and nutrition

Quote:
Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
Twizzlers in the car and bring a piece of fruit to share.

.
Norm & Ginny,

Of course the Red Strawberry or Cherry Twizzlers qualify as fruit.

Mark
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Old 06-10-2015, 07:52 PM   #37
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Upsides for us include:

1. Having experiences that we probably wouldn't ever have if we traveled by other means. Staying in a campground and waking up in the morning to a beautiful view of mountains or deserts or seashore is an awesome experience. Staying in some motel on the outskirts of a National Park is not the same as staying in a campground right in the park. I'm thinking of how cool it was last fall to be at Bryce Canyon NP and to be able to walk right over to the rim to watch the sunrise or sunset. Or seeing the reflection of Mt. Adams in a small pristine lake at a campground in the Cascade Mountains. Or falling asleep to the sound of coyotes singing to each other at a campground in Death Valley. Or being awestruck by bison roaming through our campground at Antelope Island State Park in Utah.

2. Discovering new places. We like to travel the backroads as much as possible and because of this we've stumbled across the neatest little towns and attractions. I remember once taking a wrong turn and coming across an old grist mill still in operation where they ground all sorts of grains into specialty flours and breakfast cereals. And we love discovering quirky museums, junk shops and tourist attractions. You can still do this by car I guess, but with the trailer you can take your time and stop wherever you want because you have your kitchen, dining room and bathroom with you. Makes it easier to just wander.

3. Saving money! We're pretty frugal - well, OK, cheap. If we only took car trips and stayed in motels we wouldn't be able to afford to go to as many places as we have. On our last trip in April we were gone for about three weeks and our cost averaged out to $55/day (that included campground fees, gas, propane and misc. travel related expenses, but not food since we pretty much eat the same food whether on the road or at home). If you stayed in cheaper campgrounds (or boondocked) you could bring that per day cost down even more.

4. Being able to eat our own food. We don't eat out much when we're traveling with the trailer except for the occasional fast food breakfast or lunch or maybe an ice cream treat or coffee from a convenience or general store. Being able to cook our own meals means we not only save money but we eat healthier meals. We do splurge once in awhile but we're not at the mercy of eating only at restaurants. And have you ever had one of those motel continental breakfasts? Not good!

5. Having our own little house as we go down the road. We sleep in our own beds, eat off our own dishes, use or own toilet, etc. As some others have mentioned, there's noo lugging suitcases in and out of motel rooms. Home is where we park it!

6. Just getting away from everything! Daily life can grind you down - keeping the house and yard up, doctor and dentist appointments, social obligations, family obligations, volunteer work, committee meetings. If you're still working it's even worse. When we're off in our trailer the world shrinks down to simple questions. "Where should we go today?" "What should we do today?" We don't watch or listen to the news. We go places where it feels perfectly OK to be "disconnected".
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Old 06-14-2015, 10:13 AM   #38
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After living and working in Central America for 25 years exploring remote areas of the U.S. is easier with a FGT. A key for us getting our Scamp was being able to have our own food on board. As a diabetic on a very low carb and healthy diet it is far less expensive to prepare our own vs. ordering a meal out that one is charged full price for but only safely eat 1/4 or often less of the meal.

Another huge factor is we not need to worry about hotel pet policies.
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Old 06-14-2015, 10:22 AM   #39
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I'd love to put a decal such as yours on my Scamp window. Where did you get it?
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:37 AM   #40
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"Conservation biologist specializing in bats."

Batdude,

Off thread but I started the thread...

Are bats a threatened species? If so by what?
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Old 06-14-2015, 12:21 PM   #41
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Hi Honda...

Likely this could be a MEGO moment...



There are an estimated 1,200 species of bats making up one-fifth of the global mammal population on Earth. Of these 225 species are under one of these conservation concern categories:
Critically endangered
Endangered
Vulnerable
Near threatened
5 species are also now extinct.


Now that we are back in the U.S. I continue working on bats. However my wife worked on jaguars, but alas not to be found in Michigan, or any of the surrounding lower 48!

The accidental in AZ does not count.

Back to bats. So in February we were Scamping in Blythe Calif. working on radio tracking the rare California leaf-nose bat. Great opportunity to camp at Quartzite for a few nights before the project started.
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