Tuesday, October 3, 2023


RV Travel Newsletter Issue 1074

rv travel logoWelcome to RVtravel.com, where readers come first, not advertisers and the quest for high search engine rankings. Be sure to check out all our other RV-related newsletters.

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Page Contents

October 15, 2022
Non-Members (advertising-supported) edition

 Cover story 

Is RVtravel.com all about “lambasting the RV industry”?


ear Editor,
I’ve read your weekend editions for a while now and I’m getting ready to unsubscribe. The main reason is that it has become just another echo chamber for lambasting the RV industry.

I get it. The RV industry has some major issues, but to be honest, we all signed up for those issues when we bought our RV.¹ If the intent of sharing horror stories is to provide constructive feedback to owners looking for good service locations, I submit there’s a better way. If the intent is to get more readers based on juicy drama then by all means carry on, you’ve nailed it.

I further submit you’d serve your clientele better by offering tips for getting along with your RV. Providing good technical advice might be another avenue to pursue as well. It doesn’t even have to be leading-edge stuff. Basics on holding tanks, how inverters work, how much solar capacity do you need, what’s the difference between 30A and 50A service are all topics I think would serve your readers well.²

Another area would be how to engage customer support for the best outcome (not how to start a fight and end up with litigation) would be good. A course on basic spelling, grammar, and punctuation for making Facebook posts would be good too.

I don’t know the size of your audience but I think you could make a huge positive difference in the industry if you changed your focus a bit more to the positive and helpful rather than the negative.³

We started in an Autumn Ridge bumper pull, upgraded to a Milestone 5th wheel, then a Grand Design Momentum TH, and are now in a Thor Tuscany 45MX.

Let me know if you want help.

J. Thomas

Read Chuck Woodbury’s response

Photo contest

Here is today’s edition of our photo contest. Please vote for your favorite. Once you’ve voted, please submit your own photo for consideration. Winners receive a $50 Amazon gift card. Good luck!

Please note: We’ve changed the rules around a little bit. Please read the updated rules here. And don’t forget to submit a photo! 

Psssst: Remember, you can vote through next Friday! If your photo is selected, share it with your friends and family. Everyone can vote once per day. 

Click here to vote

We want to know…

What and where was the best burger you’ve ever had? (No chain restaurants)

Nothing says America like burgers! And there are no shortages of burger joints and variations to be had across this great land. But who has the best one?

That’s why, for this question, we want to know… What Mom and Pop joint serves the best burgers, where is this burger restaurant located, and why do you like it so much?

Tell us about your favorite burger here

 Featured article 

Our readers share about their rudest campground neighbors. Yikes!

By Cheri Sicard
In a question last week, we gave you the chance to rant about the rudest campground neighbors you have encountered in commercial campgrounds. And rant you did! Judging from all the responses we got, rude campground neighbors are obviously not isolated incidents. Read what several of our readers had to say.

Today’s RV review…

The Palomino Pause 20.3 interior features a full kitchen along with a nifty table that can fold down to also serve as a bed.

Game-changing Palomino Pause breaks the mold

Tony writes, “This is one of the most out-of-character products I have ever seen and is also an absolute game-changer for so many reasons. For anyone who has complained about the build quality of an RV or wanted something vastly different, your RV has come in. But it ain’t cheap.”

Continue reading

Click here for more reviews.

Around the Campfire: If RVers had a magic wand, how would they use it?

By Gail Marsh
The conversation around the campfire a few nights ago took a whimsical turn. Someone asked the question, “If you had a magic wand, how would you use it for RVing?” The resulting discussion was unexpected and entertaining at the same time. Listen in and you’ll see what I mean.

Your RV’s R-value. Don’t believe it hook, line and sinker

The R-value of your RV is kind of a joke. Oh, I know it sounds impressive. I know the 4-season “Arctic Package” is boasting sky-high numbers. And I know you’re worried about the upcoming October chill. But what you need to know about RV R-value is that it’s not measured. It’s not tested. There’s no certification standard. It’s a loosely calculated number based on inaccurate assumptions. It’s not an outright lie—just an incomplete truth. Ross Regis tells you the rest of the story.

Exterior evaluation: Routine RV inspections can prevent major water damage

Today we are doing an exterior evaluation on this 2020 Grand Design Reflection 260RD. Our Exterior Evaluation series was created to help guide you when inspecting your own unit for routine maintenance. Stay tuned until the end—I found small cracks in the skylight. Catching this early prevented major water damage for this customer. Read more and watch this educational video from Dustin Simpson.

RV Service Centers and Repairs Report: ‘Problems? Oh, let me count the ways…!’

In this column, we’ll summarize some of your emails and comments regarding RV service centers and repairs. We’ll tell you all: the best, the good, the bad and the ugly. This week we hear from more readers with never-ending problems. But we also hear from some with praise for their service techs, including one who an RVer credits with saving her and her dog’s life. And just as in life, it’s a mixed bag this week.

Highlights from this week’s RV Daily Tips Newsletter

 My Weirdest RV Moment 

In this new column, readers tell about their weirdest (strangest, funniest, most unusual, etc.) experiences as RVers.

“Who’s afraid of the Big Bad Wolves?”

In the spirit of Halloween, this is one weird and spooky RV Moment all right! Randy B. writes, “That night under the moon and drifting clouds we had a fire going and a few cocktails in us and I am searching for the wolves with my flashlight shining across the shallow river. Suddenly, the most exhilarating and panic-ridden moment of our lives was 50 yards away.”

Read more

Camping at the surreal Porter Sculpture Park in South Dakota

“What the heck is that?” It’s a phrase that must get uttered hundreds of times a day by out-of-town motorists in the Montrose, South Dakota, area when approaching the Porter Sculpture Park. The park sits right off Interstate 90. Its large sculptures rise out of the plains and beckon tourists to veer off the interstate and check out whatever the heck that was they just whizzed past. Continue reading.

RV boo-boos: Motorhome versus block wall—you’ll be surprised

When a motorhome took on a block wall in Lake Havasu City, AZ, the results were surprising. Check out these pictures.

“I want to dump our RV Dish TV service”

By Gail Marsh
Yes, you read that correctly. I do not want to continue paying the $9 a month to access our Dish TV satellite service while traveling in our RV. Cost is not the reason I want to cancel. I believe the $9 fee is quite reasonable. It’s certainly not because of poor service. Service has been great! No matter where we’ve traveled, we’ve always been able to access a satellite that delivers all the programming I could ever want. So why cancel Dish TV? Gail explains here.

Phantom steam whistle leads to “Scarywood”… and you can camp there!

A mysterious train steam whistle drew Randall Brink to an interesting and spooky discovery. Silverwood, located at 27843 US-95, Athol, ID 83801, is a theme park alongside Highway 95. … While Silverwood is nearing the end of its season, there is still one major attraction to draw RVers off highway 95 for a night or two. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights from September 29 through October 29, Silverwood hosts its spooky annual Halloween-themed “Scarywood” celebration. It’s described by the Travel Channel as having “Halloween’s Scariest Thrills.” Read more.

Reader Poll

Are you a member of the Good Sam Club

Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded. Feel free to leave a comment.

Tell us here

We asked: Have you ever continuously stayed 3 months or more in an RV park or campground? See how nearly 2,000 other RVers answered.

The smallest short stop: The Little Shrine of our Lady of Sorrows

By Nanci Dixon
When I Googled “Things to do in Colusa, California,” only three things came up and one of them was the local casino. But one of the other things to do is visit the Little Shrine of Our Lady of Sorrows. It was listed as the littlest church. I just had to see it! I was very happy to have a GPS that steered me in the right direction over small roads and around expansive farm fields. Continue reading about this tiny historical church.

A good luck buckeye, a rabbit’s foot, a wishbone and a clover… 

By Gail Marsh
As we left an RV park in Ohio recently, the park manager accepted our payment. Along with our receipt, he handed my husband a buckeye and said, “Good luck to you! Be safe out there on the road.” My husband, a bit confused, thanked the campground manager and we returned to our rig. “What’s with the buckeye?” I wondered. … And thus began Gail’s quest for the meaning behind the buckeye from the manager, and the history of more good luck charms and sayings. Very interesting! Can you add any that she missed?

Fall migration is for the birds… but why?

By Dale Wade
I heard them before I saw them, of course. Their distinctive honk-honk-honk alerts me that fall is here and winter is not far behind. Some snow geese are on their way to winter in the southern U.S. Others fly as far as Central Mexico. Birds are in the midst of the great bird fall migration. When I say birds, I mean some 4.7 billion of them. Why do birds migrate? Dale explains here.

Are we worth more than "Free"?
At RVtravel.com, we publish 600+ newsletters a year. We strive to be the best source of honest information about RVing anywhere. Are we worth more than "free" to you? If so, would you please consider a voluntary subscription? Every dollar helps and goes straight into our editorial budget. We don't use free canned material, content creators (who write basically to fill space), or influencers. Nor do we publish articles in exchange for money (common today!). The almighty dollar is nice, but editorial integrity is far, far more important to us (we are so old fashioned!) Please help us be all we can be...for you.

The long, long RV trip

Week 19: Amazing and amusing South Dakota attractions

By Cheri Sicard
In this week’s episode, I leave the beauty of Minnesota behind and enter the equally beautiful but different South Dakota. RVing here provided so many different tourist attractions to visit, from the cute and kitschy, to the odd and unusual, to the breathtaking magnificence of nature. I always love a good tourist trap of the classic roadside Americana type, and this week offers a whole lot of that, along with one of our most spectacular national parks. Continue reading.


Is this your RV?

Win a $25 Amazon gift certificate if today’s RV photo shows your rig
Every day we post a photo of an RV either submitted by its owner or by our editors as they move about the country.

Click here to see if your RV made it into today’s issue.

Saturday Giveaway!

How would you like to win a set of Stainless Steel Coffee Mugs?

These 14 oz. vacuum-sealed coffee mugs with lids are perfect for keeping your coffee or soup warm on a cool day.

How to win
We’ll select a winner at random out of all entries we receive today (October 15, 2022) by 7 p.m. Pacific time. Remember, you can only enter once and after we notify you by email via RVcontests@gmail.com that you won, you have 24 hours to respond or we’ll give the prize to someone else.

Click here to enter or see last week’s winner!

Ask Dave

Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and author of the “RV Handbook”.

This past week’s questions that Dave answered:

On this week’s Talkin’ RV Tech: RV Quality: What RV manufacturers don’t want you to know. Watch it here.

RV Gadgets and Gizmos

My Medic gets the RV first aid kit right, and you should have one

By Randall Brink
Most RVers have discovered, often at the worst possible time, that their rig lacks a basic first aid kit. Usually, this happens right after an injury or medical condition that requires treatment. Another version of this oversight is the homebrew first aid kit which never seems to have the right items. Recently I discovered that mine had four bottles of aspirin but no Band-Aids. Then, I discovered My Medic online. Problem solved.

WANT EVEN MORE GADGETS? Don’t miss Tony’s hot-off-the-press issue of his RV Great Accessories Newsletter—published yesterday! Read it here.

Well, this may be one of the most compact things we’ve ever seen! Can’t quite think of why you’d need this in your wallet but… hey, there are always emergencies!


More on EVs and a survey: Are you ready to purchase an EV in 2023?

By Mike Sokol
Last week’s article focused on how the electric vehicle manufacturers were marketing their upcoming EV offerings. I noted that they were busy promoting mind-numbing acceleration, but ignoring the huge loss of driving range while towing any sort of trailer. And they really aren’t promoting (or don’t seem to be aware of) the lower cost to fill your EV tank with electricity compared to your ICE gas or diesel tank. … Continue reading much more on the future of electric vehicles, then please participate in our survey.

Just Ask Mike (J.A.M.) Session: Flooded lead acid battery safety reminders

Visit Mike’s RVelectricity Forum on RVtravel.com.

Video of the day

14 weird rules and RV laws you might be breaking (and 6 surprising legal ones)

Kristin from No Ordinary Path says this odd video is mostly for entertainment, but depending on your rig and where you plan to go with it, there might be some practical information in this video.

In fact, Kristin and her husband did drive where they were not officially allowed without knowing it. Ooops.

Click here to watch 

RV Tire Safety

Who owns which tire brands?

By Roger Marble
This information is from the tire industry publication “Tire Reviews”. … The tire industry is a confusing business. Historically there were the big 3 brands that people nearly always purchased, but recently there have been a number of mergers and new budget brands sprouting. We thought it would be useful to post a consolidated list of who owns who in the tire industry (for our reference as much as yours!), so here is our handy list of the tire market based on Tire Reviews’ analysis.

Ask Roger anything about RV tires on his RV Tires Forum.

RV Fire Safety

An emergency fire plan that can save your life

Having a solid fire escape plan may help you replace panic with logical, life-saving actions if a fire occurs. Knowing exactly what to do and doing it quickly can make a big difference in an emergency situation.

Part 1 of 13: Most people killed by fires are actually overcome in their sleep from gas, lack of oxygen, hot air, and smoke, or wake up too late or confused to escape. Flames are last on the list of killers. That’s why your best defense from a fire is properly installed and maintained smoke, LPG, and carbon monoxide detectors. Test your detectors weekly to be sure the batteries have enough power and the detectors are in working condition.

Courtesy: Mac “The Fire Guy” McCoy

Recipe of the Day


by Kimberly Harbeck from Sorrento, FL

This would be a perfect dish to take to a picnic or any outdoor function. The brie adds a wonderfully nutty flavor that the Crew and I couldn’t get enough of.

Get the recipe here

Readers’ Pet of the Day

“Taz, our Samoyed, loves to take over any untended camp chair. She loves my husband’s chair the best, as it is the biggest one and the most comfortable for her. And she will not willingly give up her seat!” —Jan Fields

Brain Teaser

What word in the English language has every vowel in order in the word? (Whew, this one might take you a while!)

(Answer in tomorrow’s Sunday news newsletter. And please don’t spoil it for other readers by posting the answer in the comments.)

Ambrose Burnside. Photo credit: United States Library of Congress


Facial sideburns derive their name from American Civil War general Ambrose Burnside. The general’s giant patches of hair on each cheek linked together by his mustache put the style into fashion in America in the 1870s. Eventually, men started shaving their mustaches and leaving their upper lip and chin bare, leaving just the sideburns to be shown off. The name “burnsides” got morphed into “sideburns” and the name stuck.

Laugh of the Week


Current Wildfire Report. (Includes map and details of fires!)

Current smoke and fire report for where you live or where you are traveling.

RVs: Who Makes What” – This is a new free directory from RVtravel.com which lists every U.S. RV manufacturer and their makes and models. Learn more and/or download a free PDF copy.

RV Show Directory: See if a show is coming soon to your area.

Stolen RVs — Help us recover these stolen RVs. The more eyes we have searching for them, the better chance of getting them back to their rightful owners, and maybe putting the crooks who stole them in the slammer! See the stolen RVs.

Great websites. Check out our favorite websites of the day! We compiled a list of (almost) all the websites we’ve ever posted, and we update it weekly.

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.

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

Directory of RV parks with storm shelters
In case you’re on the road with your RV and the weather report is showing a tornado headed your way, have this list handy.

RV Clubs
Check out our Directory of RV Clubs and Organizations.

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.

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

The Best RV Trip Planner Apps and Tools. Everything you need to help plan your trip is here.

Dustin Simpson RV Repair and Maintenance Articles: Incredibly helpful!

Meet Earl and Burl Squirrel, from the mind of RVtravel.com friend R.L. Crabb.

Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?

Read it here | Back issues

RVtravel.com All Star Team

rv travel logoPublisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Associate editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Tony Barthel, Gail Marsh. Contributors: Mike Sokol, Roger Marble, Dave Solberg, Dave Helgeson, Mike Gast, Julianne Crane, Machelle James, J.R. Montigel, Randall Brink, Karel Carnohan DVM, Cheri Sicard, Dustin and Ashley Simpson, Dale Wade, Paul Lacitinola, Jeff Clemishaw and Johnny Robot. Special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Moderators: Gary Gilmore, Linda Brady. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. Special Reports: Bradford Geer. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

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 RVtravel.com or this newsletter.

RVtravel.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Regardless of this potential revenue, unless stated otherwise, we only recommend products or services we believe provide value to our readers.

Editorial (all but news)
: editor@rvtravel.com
Editorial (news)
: chuck@rvtravel.com
: Advertising@rvtravel.com
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This newsletter is copyright 2022 by RV Travel LLC.


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11 months ago

The one thing after a CPR class one year was to always have kotex in your medic kit. The reason being is if you cut yourself badly, which some us might do, not me, to contain the bleeding and being able to get to ER without bleeding all over the place. Otherwise I try to keep a well contained kit in the RV just in case. I thought that is where pumpkin pie came from. Not.

11 months ago

About the way Pumpkin pie is made; reminds me of the movie “The Help”

11 months ago

Name any other industry that makes consumer products (with VERY significant costs) that have such a high defect rate. And when the defects are discovered, it takes the product out of use for weeks to months at a time. If regular cars and trucks were made to the same quality standards as RV’s, our federal and state governments would mandate improvements or force mfrs. out of business.
Keep publishing the good, bad, and ugly of the RV industry because it’s about the only way change will ever happen and new owners will come in forewarned and know what they are getting into.

11 months ago
Reply to  Mark

I wish the Consumer Safety Commission would expand their reach into RV’s. It’s obvious that the National Transportation Board does not care what is rattling down the highway or they would be sitting on the manufacturers.

11 months ago

Lesson learned: Don’t look at the Pumpkin Pie joke if you have a weak bladder and just drank several cups of coffee!!! :-))))))

RV Staff
11 months ago
Reply to  Spike

😆 Sorry, Spike. I wonder how many of our readers will have that picture in their mind when they’re eating their piece of pumpkin pie over the holidays? Have a good afternoon/evening. 😀 –Diane

11 months ago

Not at all sure how Mr. Thomas believes what he believes? Agree with you wholeheartedly that NO ONE buys an RV (or anything else) expecting it to be sub-standard! Just the opposite, I expect to get what I paid for, a good working product!

Dale Anderson
11 months ago

I have to disagree with Mr. Thomas. I read RV Travel almost everyday and find that there is a good balance of information. If there is something that doesn’t interest me I just skim it or skip it all together. I have learn many new tricks and techniques through RV Travel and enjoy it. Keep up the good work.

11 months ago
Reply to  Dale Anderson

I agree with you. Some articles do not interest me, but most are informative and sometimes amusing.
As far as the basics of RV ownership, RVtravel puts out a newsletter for “beginners”.
There are also numerous articles and videos on the internet for specific questions.
The articles “lambasting” the RV industry and certain dealers, gives the buyer ammunition when looking for an RV. There are times that they need this.

11 months ago

I may never look at pumpkin pies the same again. 😱

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