Saturday, December 9, 2023


Members RV Travel Newsletter Issue 903

Learn about RV camping, RV travel, RV news and much more. This newsletter, now in its 18th year of continuous publication, is funded primarily through advertising and voluntary subscription contributions from our readers. Thank you!

Page Contents

Week of June 29 – July 5, 2019

If you would like to read this week’s issue with the ads included, click here.

If you shop with would you please visit the site by clicking here? We get a small commission on anything you purchase, which helps us fund this newsletter and website.

Guest essay

With Nina Soltwedel

Don’t stop at “making” memories in an RV


or many of us, owning an RV means taking extended trips, often to faraway places. Do you document such trips so that you can relive them years from now?

Worthington Glacier

You may be thinking, “Yeah, but we took pictures. That’s documenting the memories.” I agree, but what I suggest is taking it one step further: Document the trip with something in addition to photos.

Recently, I decided to sort through the decades of photos, letters, cards, etc., that my hubby and I have accumulated, which were stored in our basement. I had three huge bins filled with items going back as far as when we both were babies (our respective parents saved everything), along with three smaller boxes overflowing with family photographs. I began sorting, and while doing that, I began to travel down Memory Lane … a very long lane!

Click here to read the rest of the article.

Did you miss last week’s RV Travel Newsletter?
Read it here | Back issues

If you have not contributed to for some time and would like to do so again, you may do so here.


The challenges of publishing
By Chuck Woodbury. This website is a “survivor” despite offering unflattering commentary from time to time about the non-appreciative RV industry. I have more to stay about this. Plus, two new supporters/sponsors that need an introduction.
Read more.

Also … I apologize for not responding to some of your emails. With our growth has come a lot more email and I am having a difficult time keeping up. I try to respond to everyone who writes, but sometimes I can’t because I run out of time. Please forgive me. I do try.


New feature by legendary Hall of Fame quarterback, in association with RV Advisor, is happy to announce a new feature in this newsletter by legendary Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino. Dan has teamed up with RVer advocate Gigi Stetler to advise RVers about how to buy an RV and related services, including helping them understand the finer points of often-confusing contracts. The membership site, which is a financial supporter of, offers unique content and advice that is not available elsewhere. We are thrilled to work with Gigi and Dan, whose first contribution will appear next week. Learn more about the RV Advisor.

Write for us. Gain fame and maybe even fortune someday (relatively speaking). If you have a story that needs to bust out of you and onto the pages of this website, then this is your opportunity. Just click here to find a submission form. We typically do not pay for these initial contributions and are selective in those we publish. But when we spot talent, we will take notice and invite the writer to submit more, sometimes with pay.

Update on a new association of RVers
Three weeks ago we proposed the creation of a new organization for RVers, which we suggested be called AARVO— an acronym for the American Association of RV Owners. The idea was well received by readers — except some: those in Canada! That was a stupid oversight on our part. So we have tweaked the proposed name to NAARVO, for North American Association of RV Owners. Read more.

My Roadside Journal

(about whatever is on my mind, not necessarily RV-related)

My jury duty: Get it right or an innocent guy goes to prison.

That was the RV week that was

The latest news about RVing from our newsroom

Important stories
• Proposed bill in New York would make campgrounds quieter.
• RV parks in Minnesota are disappearing by the hundreds.
• What’s to become of Roadtrek owners’ warranties?
• RV shipments to dealers are way down from last year.
• Planning to camp at Sioux City, Iowa’s Ickey Nickel Bar & Grill? Think again.
. . . and much more.

Last week’s featured tips in RV Daily Tips Newsletters
Tight spots and big rigs.
Do you really know your equipment?
Cheap engine oil filler funnels.
Cons of fulltime RV living.

Campground Chatter

Developments at RV parks and campgrounds across the USA

Janet Groene reports each week on developments at RV parks and campgrounds across the USA and Canada. There’s a lot of good information here that you can use to plan your travels. Read the current installment of “Campground Chatter” here.

Reader Poll – IMPORTANT!

Reader PollHow would you respond as a driver to a tire blowout?

Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded plus learn the correct thing to do if this happens to you. Feel free to leave a comment. We’ll post the final results in next week’s newsletter. CLICK HERE.

RV shipments continue to decline

The RV Industry Association’s May survey of manufacturers found that total RV shipments ended the month with 39,724 wholesale shipments, a decrease of 14.2% from the 46,322 units shipped last May. Learn more.

What we learned about you last week

How many amps do you prefer when hooking up to electricity? How much of your spendable income comes from employment? Do you own a “stick and brick” home? How often do you bet money and play games at casinos? When washing your hands, what comes first, soap or water? All this and more, right here.

Living full-time in a roomy motorcycle pop-up trailer

For anyone who thinks their rig is too small, check out this video. Kevin has combined two of veteran RVer Greg Illes’ deepest loves – RVing and motorcycling – and he’s actually full-timing in this setup. Interesting rig, to say the least. And it has a king-size bed?! The video is almost 20 minutes, but worth watching.

Don’t fall for the latest online scams

Here are two scams currently making their way around the Internet. Steer clear of these, and please tell your friends to do the same. Click to read more.

RVer dies after airborne RV crashes onto departed ferry boat

An RV driver who was killed in a horrific accident Monday is being hailed as a hero after doing everything he could to warn pedestrians of his out-of-control RV and avoiding other vehicles before the RV became airborne, flying about 30 feet and crashing onto the deck of a ferry that had just left the dock. Read more and watch the video. Viewer discretion is advised.

Are four-wheel disc brakes a must?

Most new RVs have disc brakes on all four wheels. Rich “The Wanderman’s” RV has discs on the front but drums on the back. Recently he had some problems that triggered a set of brake repair woes, and he wondered if it wouldn’t be better to have discs in the rear as well. He weighs the pros and cons here.

Why do RVers need so much electrical power?

This was posted on our Facebook group RV Advice. We’ll post if here for those of you who do not use Facebook. This reader wants to know: “What the heck do you people do to use so much electricity?” Read the full post, then please leave a comment.

Good Sam Club now for anglers, boaters!

In case you have not noticed, the once all-RVer Good Sam Club is now being billed as an “RV and Outdoor Club.” Read more.

Win this great backpack!

We love giving away stuff!

This vintage laptop backpack is perfect for carrying not only your laptop computer but lots of other stuff as well. Plus, with an external USB charging port and set-in charging cable, it offers a convenient way to charge your electronic device when walking.


Congratulations to last week’s winner. No contest last week so no winner.

Popular articles from last week’s issue

All about RV electrical fires and a new way to extinguish them fast.
Is Good Sam Club head honcho Lemonis headed to jail?
Funny things RVers say.
How much power is right for you? (Poll with many comments.)
Video: Where motorhomes go to die.
Campground Chatter with Janet Groene, June 21, 2019.
The myth of full-time RV life versus the reality.
That was the RV week that was, June 15-21, 2019.
RVer’s cremated ashes arrive: Something is not right.
What we learned about you last week (June 15-21).
Fuel prices plummet – $2 per gallon could come soon.
RV Electricity – Generator grounding and bonding.


Our Facebook Groups: RV Horror Stories, RV Advice, RV Electricity and RV Parks with Storm Shelters. If you live or travel in Texas, you will probably like Texas RV Camping.

Where to complain about bad RVs, dealers, service, RV parks. This is an ever-expanding list of resources where you can report, share or discuss your problems with RV manufacturers or dealers.

The RV Show USA
Listen each Wednesday evening on Facebook or YouTube for the live taping of America’s only syndicated radio program about RVing.

Best Club for RVers: Escapees. Click here to learn more or join. Endorsed by

Motorhomes on Fire
This is not pretty – dozens of videos of RVs burning up. But the point is to help viewers understand that RVs burn fast, and they need to practice good fire-prevention habits and practice an escape plan … just in case.

What does financing an RV for 20 years REALLY mean?
In case you missed this article the first time around, here it is again. Important! Click here.

Save bandwidth while watching YouTube videos
How to watch YouTube videos using very little bandwidth.

Stuck with a lemon RV? Contact Ron Burdge, America’s premier RV lemon law attorney.

gas-738Latest fuel prices

Here are the latest U.S. average prices per gallon of gasoline and diesel fuel as of June 24, 2019:
Regular unleaded gasoline: $2.65. [Calif.: $3.61]
Change from week before: Down 2 cents; Change from year before: Down 18 cents.
Diesel: $3.04. [Calif.: $3.97]
Change from week before: Down 3 cents; Change from year before: Down 17 cents.

RV Quick Tip

Shake, rattle and roll down the road — still the crystal vase stays put

It’s often been said that by driving or pulling our rigs down the road we expose them to earthquake-like conditions. It’s a wonder more stuff doesn’t fall and break! So, how do we secure something like a crystal vase that we want to stay in one place while we travel? The answer is found in products like Museum Gel, Museum Putty and Museum Wax.

Each of these stick-’em products has a specific recommended application. Museum Putty will secure most anything to keep it from falling and breaking. Museum Putty comes ready to use in a sheet. You just pull off a chunk and roll it in your fingers until soft, then stick it on the bottom of the item you are securing. Then you slightly twist the item with the putty onto the surface and “presto,” you’re done. It will not harm wood finishes and it can be used over and over again. You can purchase Museum Putty at Amazon.

Museum Gel (also available at Amazon) is another product that works best for anchoring crystal and glass objects because it is clear. You apply it the same as Museum Putty, but it takes about an hour to set. Museum Wax (at Amazon) is the best choice for more permanent placement of objects. It works well on wood shelves but can become more difficult to remove if objects are left in place more than one year. —Jim Twamley

Battery grease lubricants (but not from bacon)

“Most side post batteries these days are quite good at eliminating corrosion buildup, unlike the top-post type. If you are having issues with corrosion, which weakens the electrical conductivity, clean the posts then coat the entire post and clamp with grease. Axle grease works great. Bacon grease not so much. This will keep the air away from the posts and components and prevent corrosion buildup.” We’ll add that many swear by dielectric grease from an auto parts house. Far less attractive to mice looking for breakfast than bacon grease. —George Bliss

Do you have a Quick Tip? Send it to Russ (at)

RVer Safety

Man fatally shot by rangers at California State Park

A man shooting a gun in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park was fatally shot by park rangers late Saturday [June 22], according to state park officials. This story is as scary as an approaching tornado. You go out for a walk and someone starts shooting at you? It is hard to imagine, but apparently, it does happen. So, if you take a hike, should you take a gun? Read more.

Ask the RV Shrink

Husband runs out of gas in RV looking for cheapest price

Dear RV Shrink:
Maybe you can shed some light on my husband’s gas problem. He is obsessed with buying the cheapest gas available and twice now our motorhome has run out of gas because he thinks it’s going to be cheaper around the next bend. He has three or four websites he is always checking for gas price postings and they are never accurate when we reach the supposedly cheapest stations.

Read the rest of the question and the RV Shrink’s advice.

The Business of Work Camping

Where to put the groceries in an RV? – Part 1

From Sam Suva: Did we once think there was no place to cook or store food in an RV? We needed to think again. One of the most common questions we get is, “How do you prepare a meal in an RV? It’s such a tiny refrigerator and there is no counter space!” Well, it was a learning curve, but keep reading – the answers surprised us, too!

Ask the RV Doctor

What to do about ice on RV fridge fins

Dear Gary,
We are new full-timers and I’ve noticed our Norcold refrigerator fins inside the unit are icing up. What causes this, or is this normal? Is there any way to prevent this? —Casey D.

Read Gary’s response.

RV Electricity

RV Electrical Safety – Part 3 – Measuring outlets

Here’s Part 3 of my 12-part series (originally posted in 2010) about basic electricity for RV users and how to protect yourself and your family from shocks and possible electrocution. I’ve updated this article with the latest information on 3-phase campground power and improved shore power connections. Learn more.

This week’s J.A.M. (Just Ask Mike) Session:

AC and DC trailer hookups.

Sign up for Mike’s monthly RV Electricity Newsletter. Issue #20 arrives tomorrow, June 30.
• While you’re at it, sign up for Mike’s new RV Electricity group on Facebook.

RV Tire Safety

Is there a critical do-not-exceed tire temperature?

Hi Roger,
I just read your article on sidewall strength and “blowouts.” You mentioned that if the temperature rises too high the sidewall cords may melt. … Most RVers know (or should know) to keep their tires at the proper inflation level. The one thing I haven’t seen addressed is tire/air pressure temperature. …

Read the rest of the question and Roger’s response.

Building an RV Park

Editor: This feature is on a brief hiatus.

Western Views

The story of Peg Leg and his legendary gold

It took strong wills and hearty bodies to settle the West, and a lot of our pioneering forefathers were the stuff of legends. But before the wagons rolled across the plains there were the mountain men…. Unfortunately, not all of them were men of good character; there were charlatans and crooks among them. One of the questionable ones was a man called Peg Leg Smith. Read his story or let Len Wilcox read it to you. (Let us know if you find Peg Leg’s hill of gold.)

The RV Kitchen

Chop Chop Rice Salad

A no-cook summer salad. When summer weather is sweltering and you want nothing but cold, whole-meal salads, here’s a change from the same old macaroni and tuna salad. Canned Chinese vegetables add color and variety and an Asian-style salad dressing is a low-calorie switch from mayonnaise. Get the recipe.

The RoVing Naturalist

All about banding hummingbirds – Fascinating!

No doubt you have heard of bird banding – that activity biologists do to determine where birds go, how fast they get there and how long they live. It takes a lot of training and patience to be able to band birds, and there are relatively few people who take on this tiny task that means so much. Learn more.

RV Short Stop

Summer festivals for family fun in South Carolina, Vermont and Idaho

If you’re anywhere near Gilbert, S.C., on the 4th of July, head to the 60th Annual Lexington County Peach Festival – tons of activities and it’s FREE. In August, Franklin County Field Days in Highgate, VT, has been popular for 40 years and there’s something for everyone to love. And Idaho’s Festival at Sandpoint, going strong since 1983, will host Jackson Browne and Kool & the Gang, among other big-name groups. Learn more.

Guest Bloggers

The Importance of Motorhome Checklists – from Andy Pargh, The Gadget Guru. is interested in hosting your blog. Increase your audience hugely in most cases. No need to abandon your current blog: Just post highlights with us (and watch traffic to your existing blog soar). Contact to learn more.

Facebook Groups of Interest

Texas RV Camping
Full-time RV Living
The Camping World Experience
PLUS OUR OWN GROUPS: RV Horror Stories, RV Advice, RV Electricity & RV Parks with Storm Shelters

Free and bargain camping


Travel Centers of America #75, Breezewood, PA
FREE! Overnight parking is allowed and permission is not required. Park in one of nine back-in Bus/RV spaces (three of them are short) in the auto lot, on the west side of the main building. Propane, showers, public laundry, dump station, restaurant, and Wi-Fi are all available on-site. Click here for more details.

IGA Supermarket, Fort Nelson, B.C.
FREE! Overnight parking is allowed but permission from the store is required. Multiple nights possible with manager permission. Park on the south side of the building away from Hwy 97. The small lot is best suited to smaller rigs. It is level, well-lit, quiet, and appears safe. There is a laundromat next door. Click here for more details.

Other sources:
Walmarts that do not allow overnight RV stays.
Walmart Directory: Best printed directory of Walmart locations

Overnight RV Parking, with more than 14,000 locations listed, is the largest and best resource for locating free and inexpensive places to spend a night in an RV. For membership information and a demo of the site, click here. A modest membership fee required, but try the free demo. Watch a video about

Upcoming RV Shows

Green Country RV Show, July 19-21, Tulsa, OK
Enumclaw RV Show (near Seattle), Aug. 1-4.
America’s Largest RV Show, Sept. 12-15, Hershey, PA

See the complete list of upcoming RV shows.


Austin, the state capital of Texas, was originally called Waterloo. The site, settled in the 1830s, was picked as the capital of the Republic of Texas in 1839 and renamed in honor of Stephen Austin.

Silly Tourist Questions

From Jerry Clausen, who spent a college summer working at Mt. Rushmore (1966):
A woman got off the tour bus and was standing with her back to the 20-foot floor-to-ceiling windows framing the Memorial. She asked, “Is there anything special to see at this stop?”

Have you overheard a silly tourist question at a National Park or other well-known tourist location? Send it to diane(at)

Bumper sticker of the week

I don’t brake for tornadoes … but I yield to flying cows.

Have you seen a funny bumper sticker? Send it to diane(at)

Joke of the Week

My twin brother called me from prison.
He said, “So, you know how we finish each other’s sentences?”

Worth Pondering

Don’t judge folks by their relatives.

RV Travel staff


Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Managing editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editor: Russ De Maris. Contributing writers: Mike Sokol, Greg Illes, Bob Difley, Richard Miller, Richard Mallery, Gary Bunzer, Roger Marble, Janet Groene, Julianne Crane, Chris Guld, Dave Helgeson, Dennis Prichard, Len Wilcox, Sam Suva, Mike Sherman, Machelle James, J.M. Montigel and Andrew Robinson. Advertising director: Emily Woodbury. Marketing director: Jessica Sarvis. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

REGIONAL AND LOCAL ADVERTISING: We can now run banners on in your town or in a designated area near you, for example to readers within 100, 200, etc., miles of your business. Contact Emily Woodbury at advertising(at) .

About the editor Chuck Woodbury has explored America by RV for three decades. In the ’90s he published the quirky travel newspaper Out West, and was an “on the road” writer for the New York Times Syndicate. His book, “The Best from Out West” is available at Woodbury’s RVing adventures have been profiled on ABC News, CNN, NBC’s Today Show, and in People Magazine, USA Today and in hundreds of newspapers. He is the host of the Better Business Bureau DVD “Buying a Recreational Vehicle,” the definitive guide to purchasing an RV the right way.

Everything in this newsletter is true to the best of our knowledge. But we occasionally get something wrong. We’re just human! So don’t go spending $10,000 on something we said was good simply because we said so, or fixing something according to what we suggested (check with your own technician first). Maybe we made a mistake. Tips and/or comments in this newsletter are those of the authors and may not reflect the views of or this newsletter.

Mail us at 9792 Edmonds Way, #265, Edmonds, WA 98020.

This newsletter is copyright 2019 by



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Carl Houston (@guest_48492)
4 years ago

I like NAARVO. In fact on my way to Vancouver Island. Love USA and Canada.
Good idea.

BuzzElectric (@guest_48448)
4 years ago

Help! Fire under the dashboard while driving a 1993 Bounder 28t, Ford f53 chassie. The ground strap was on fire. Easy replacement. Why did it happen? It was suggested it was the main ground problem. I found the front main one. Cleaned it up. Are there others? Anything else I should know before I replace the small ground strap under the dashboard? It was scary with the cab filling with smoke and the alarm going off.

Stephen Cavender (@guest_48444)
4 years ago

NAARVO – What a refreshing idea. An organization that truly represents the RV owner and our issues, and one that Marcus Lemonus doesn’t control. He destroyed Good Sam Club, and all turned all RV magazines into most manufactures “spin zone.”. Sign me up!