Saturday, December 9, 2023


RV Travel Newsletter for Sunday, October 29, 2023

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Page Contents

October 29, 2023
Issue 1128
Free, abbreviated edition

 Cover story 

A young boy at Walmart whose story will warm your heart

By Chuck Woodbury
In our world of negative, often depressing and sometimes tragic news and information, it’s wonderful to come upon a story that warms our heart. This one is about a young boy at Walmart, hardly where you would expect to find inspiration. But when I stumbled upon the story, I felt instantly aglow from head to foot. Oh, young children — sometimes they do things, most often little things, that brighten our day and embolden our faith in humanity. Here is the story and its photo. The source, I’m sorry to report, is unknown:

A mother visited Walmart with her young son. Sometime while shopping she realized her boy was gone. She searched all over for him and was becoming frantic when she neared the front of the store. There he was!

She was about to scold him when she noticed that he was kneeling at a bench, praying. She did not understand, at least at first. Then she saw a huge poster on the wall above him with photos and descriptions of missing children. It read: “Every second counts.”

She took a photo of her son as he prayed and posted it on Facebook. It immediately went viral.

One Facebook commenter wrote: “Whether or not you believe in a God really doesn’t matter. This was a child in Walmart who was thinking about others and doing the only thing he could to help. The world would be a better place if everyone followed his example.”

Oh, isn’t that so very true?

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Today’s RV review…

Keystone Cougar Premium 260MLE fifth wheel – Home run?

Today’s RV review is of the 2024 Keystone Cougar 260MLE. This is a new floor plan for the Cougar line and is part of their Premium series. … Knowing that I was in Indiana at the RV Open House, a friend of mine messaged me and implored me to go look at this new floor plan, as she is interested in getting one. … [F]or whatever reason, the website doesn’t reflect just how good this floor plan is. So let’s look at what makes this such a unique fifth wheel and one that I can see why my friend was all excited about.

Read more

The craziest RV story we’ve ever heard…

We’ve heard a lot of crazy, insane, unbelievable stories around here (just read our RV Service Centers and Repairs Report column each week to see what we mean!). But this one takes the cake for the craziest RV story ever!

Claudia and Steven Sorensen detail what happened when their RV was stolen from their storage facility, recovered, towed, stolen again, towed again, then SOLD… and nobody ever told them.

Read it to believe it. Wow!

Click here to read

RV Service Centers and Repairs Report

RV techs calling newly-made RVs “Covid trailers” – “manufactured fast with little or no inspection”

In this column, we summarize some of your emails and comments regarding RV service centers and repairs. This week, Nanci Dixon relates a few of your ongoing RV service horror stories, including more reports of trouble getting warranty work done, more suggestions to get work done at locations other than an RV center, and another story about an RV reportedly being “used” by someone while in the shop. There are also several good reports about service received which was “above and beyond.” (Yay!)

Read more

Should homeless RVers observe the same rules as other RVers?

By Dave Helgeson
My wife and I prefer boondocking on public land. We sometimes find ourselves camping in the vicinity of those who are less fortunate than ourselves. I am referring to those who are considered homeless or unhoused residing in an RV as their last resort for shelter rather than choosing an RV as a primary residence by choice, like full-time RVers. Many homeless RVers have taken refuge on USFS or BLM land, as it is plentiful in the West with areas open to dispersed camping and not far from larger cities to obtain services. I have no issue with this if they keep a clean camp and abide by the regulations. Continue reading. What do you think?

Basic RV etiquette that isn’t always talked about, but makes all the difference

By Gail Marsh
We all learned the “magic words” as a kid. Do you want a piece of pie? What are the magic words? “Please” and “Thank you.” “Magic words” and other proper manners were taught to most of us as we grew up. In the spirit of “never stop learning new things,” I recently learned a few rules of etiquette about RVing that I hadn’t known before. Here they are.

What keeps RV holding tanks clear? Readers offer ideas

By Jan Steele
Did you read my story last Sunday about the “pyramid of poo” in my RV’s black tank? You know this is a hot topic of conversation among RVers. No sh*t! Read it here before continuing on. I received some good responses from readers who don’t agree with everything Kleen Tank literature says. Several swear by Dawn or Happy Camper. No one mentioned the products you find in an RV store aisle. Continue reading and see what other RVers are using.

Highlights from this week’s RV Daily Tips Newsletter

ENJOYING THIS NEWSLETTER? Then you’ll love our RV Daily Tips Newsletter! It’s filled with RV tips and tricks, RV maintenance advice, cool gadgets, trivia, a poll question, a joke, websites we love, recipes, and much more. Read the latest issues here then sign up here. Easy unsubscribe if you don’t like it (but we know that won’t happen).

A “cool tool” indeed: The Magnetizer/Demagnetizer
This gadget, recommended by Dave Solberg and Dustin Simpson, instantly magnetizes or demagnetizes steel tools and other small parts. You can convert any tool blade to a magnetic retriever of things like screws, nuts, and metallic particles. No batteries or electricity required. Never lose a screw again! Read more about it here, or buy one for yourself here.

RV Mistakes: Dumb things I have done while RVing. What are your stories?

By Nanci Dixon
In this new column, we will be sharing some of the not-so-brilliant things we, the staff, and you, our readers, have done while RVing. We hope that in addition to a chuckle or two, we can learn from others’ RV mistakes and not make them ourselves! Continue reading.

World’s largest Lego travel trailer is sight to behold

This is not a little toy, if that’s what you’re thinking. It’s a full-sized travel trailer made of Legos – yes, Legos, the same things that children worldwide use as toys. It’s certified by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest creation of its kind. Watch it being built in the short video below.

Scammers are getting creative. Know about these RV scams and be careful

By Janet Groene
With the explosive growth of RV travel comes the increase in RV travel scams, many of them borrowed from other travel industries such as hotels and cruising. Some are old, but many are so new to RV travel, and so high tech, they can be hard to recognize. Here are some new RV scams to watch for.

Reader Poll

Has a sewer valve or hose ever broken or malfunctioned while you were dumping?

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

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:

Click here to see more questions for Dave.

Stop losing your keys! Stop losing your dog’s leash! Keep your hats and scarves and gloves organized! This will help all of that. You can thank us later!

In the RV shop with Dustin

Preventing dump valve handles from coming loose in travel

By Dustin Simpson
I was recently asked by a customer about RV dump valve handles coming loose in travel. They wanted to know where they could get a replacement handle and how they could prevent it from coming loose again. … If the handle on your RV dump valve is loose, it’s essential to address the issue promptly to prevent any accidental openings or difficulties in operation. Here are steps you can take to secure a loose dump valve handle.

Read more.

THOUGHT FROM OUR READERS: “It’s too bad RV’s don’t get manufactured by aircraft manufacturers.” —Bob & Beth S.

Travel Destinations

The beautiful Grand Canyon National Park: A guide for RVers

By Dale Wade
This segment of Nature’s Highways needs to address the elephant in the room… the Grand Canyon. In 2022, Grand Canyon National Park came in second as the most visited park in the U.S. (4.7 million), just edging out Zion but way behind Great Smoky Mountains. The area’s numbers are impressive. Through the 1.2 million acres, the Colorado River carved the canyon 277 miles long, 18 miles at its widest, and over one mile deep.

Click here to read why this is so popular

 NEW! RVing with Harvest Hosts

Blast off with Harvest Hosts: Stay at these 3 great aviation and space museums

By Cheri Sicard
Come along as we count down to adventure and education at three terrific aviation and space museums where you can spend the night in your RV as a Harvest Hosts member. … A lot of RVers stubbornly hang on to the misconception that Harvest Hosts is all about wineries, but that’s only a small part of the variety of experiences awaiting Harvest Host members. This week’s picks featuring three great stops for space and aviation buffs of all ages make terrific examples.

Click here to read

Who publishes 700+ RV newsletters a year? Only us! would not be possible without the financial support of our voluntary contributors. Their support allows us to avoid relying on advertising, and keeps our resource-rich work unbiased and free for all RVers to enjoy. Every contribution makes a difference. A donation of $10 a year comes out to less than 2 cents for each issue we publish. That’s all! And when you contribute, you’ll receive a special member-only ad-free version of our weekend newsletters forever as one way for us to say thank you. Learn more or donate.

Ghost Town Trails

Berlin, Nevada – Ghost town with ancient marine creatures

By Dave Helgeson
Berlin, Nevada, is the featured ghostly place of this month’s edition of Ghost Town Trails. Like last month’s entry of Rhyolite, NV, it is a great stop for snowbirds heading south for the winter. A paved road takes you most of the way to the old townsite, plus there is an onsite campground for those that dare spend the night. This sounds perfect for Halloween.

RV Tire Safety

Regarding tires, what is an RLOF? And why should you care?

By Roger Marble
“RLOF” is the short-hand abbreviation tire engineers use for a tire with a Run-Low Flex failure. In the past, this was one of the most common conditions found in tires submitted by customers for adjustment. Read what causes these and why they’re not actually “blowouts”.

Bed sheet suspenders keep your sheets in place! 
We have to admit, we just recently discovered these and wondered how we didn’t know about them sooner – they’re amazing! If you have bed sheets that don’t stay in place, these easy-to-use bed sheet fasteners or “suspenders” keep them in place – no more corners that won’t stay down! Learn more or order for a great price.

Did you miss yesterday’s Latest News for RVers?

If so, stories you missed:

and much more

Read it here | Back issues

From Johnny Robot, our A.I. staff writer

Fake Dr. Seuss writes about RV breakdowns

Image created with A.I.

As he does most weeks, our publisher Chuck Woodbury offers up an article written using artificial intelligence. Today, he asked the free A.I. platform ChatGPT to “write a 200 word poem in Dr. Seuss style in first person about a man who complains that every time he takes a trip in his motorhome something breaks. He is beside himself. And not to mention that he can never find somewhere to get the problems fixed.” Read the poem that was spit out by a “robot” in 20 seconds.

Recipe of the Day

Halloween Crunch

by Elizabeth Lancaster from Naples, TX

Want a fun snack mix for Halloween? Well, this is festive and has a nice mix of flavors and textures. The salty popcorn and peanuts are a tasty contrast to the sweet candy corn and chocolate candies. We loved the candy corn. They’re slightly chewy compared to the crunchiness of the mix. Fun for a movie night or on Halloween.

Get the recipe here

Readers’ Pet of the Day

“We picked Reba up on July 8th @ramboboxers. They held her another month to get all but the rabies vaxes done. (So grateful.) She is very smart, full of energy, and as loving as they come.” —Kelly Sleeper

RVing with Dogs group on Facebook. You’ll love it.

Don’t kill yourself or loved ones out of ignorance
• If you ever feel a shock when touching your RV, take action. Otherwise, you could kill yourself or loved ones.
• If you blow a front tire, do this. The result could be a disaster if you follow your instincts.

Brand-new book for county park camping
Roundabout Publications and the Ultimate Campground Project have published the first edition of “Camping in America’s County Parks.” The 192-page directory profiles 2,068 RV, van and tent camping areas at 1,408 parks in 42 states. Inside, maps pinpoint campgrounds with information about staying, including types of restrooms, showers, dump stations and RV length limits. Rates, contact and reservation information is also listed.  Read more about it here.


St. Augustine, Florida, a little less than an hour south of Jacksonville, is the oldest city in America. Founded in September 1565 by Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles of Spain, it’s the longest continually inhabited European city founded in the U.S.

Have you ever visited St. Augustine?

Sunday funny

Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?

Read it here | Back issues

The ongoing adventures of Earl and Burl Squirrel, from the mind of friend R.L. Crabb. All Star Team

rv travel logo

Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Associate editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Gail Marsh, Dave Solberg and Cheri Sicard. Contributors: Roger Marble, Dave Helgeson, Janet Groene, J.R. Montigel, Randall Brink, Dustin Simpson, Dale Wade, Jan Steele and Tony Barthel. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen. Artificial Intelligence (AI) contributors: Johnny Robot and Milly MacWilly. Canine mascots: Archie and Astor “the Disaster”

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

Editorial (all but news)
Editorial (news)
Advertising. Information here.
Help desk: Contact us.

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This newsletter is copyright 2023 by RV Travel LLC.


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Vickie Ames (@guest_258755)
1 month ago

Its called an Air Tag, costs $30, the size of a 50 cent piece, can be hidden anywhere in an RV and will let you know where your stolen RV is in no time. If it works for luggage, will work for RV’s. Or maybe the insurance claim is a preferred path.

John Hicks (@guest_258712)
1 month ago

I recall another aircraft-related saying from the old days, “Would you fly in an airplane built by Harley-Davidson?”

Ron T (@guest_258742)
1 month ago
Reply to  John Hicks

Better be ready for what that RV would cost too.

Uncle Swags (@guest_258711)
1 month ago

The lead story was truly nice to read. Nice to know this young man is out there in the world making a difference and that he has been properly parented. But as someone who is convinced of God’s existence can someone explain what is the risk of believing in God?

CeeCee (@guest_258789)
1 month ago
Reply to  Uncle Swags

Our daughter has taught her children to stop and pray whenever they hear a siren. Whenever they are with us and hear a siren, they remind us to stop and pray. Many of the tragedies we see occurring around us are due to not believing in a loving, righteous God who sees all and to whom we will one day have to give an account. Not believing in Him is much more risky!

D.T. Smith (@guest_258650)
1 month ago

Wow the story about the Class C stolen 3 times should make you fearful and MAD ! Now factor in the wide open border , clueless and lax enforcement due to the anti Police sentiment and what is one person to do ?

Gary W Mayberry (@guest_258819)
1 month ago
Reply to  D.T. Smith

Be sure and VOTE. Wide open border? Vote!

Tom (@guest_258830)
1 month ago
Reply to  D.T. Smith

Story does mention anything about where the guy was from. It does talk about insurance and police, of course keyboard warriors don’t let facts get in the way of comments.

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