Sunset Campground in Utah’s Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest has been shut down and will not reopen until sometime in 2020. This year, the campground’s water supply system will be decommissioned, as it has become a health hazard; vandalism damage will also be dealt with. Next year the Service will address erosion and watershed issues. Camping will be available during the closure less than four miles away at Bountiful Peak Campground.
High fire danger has forced the complete shutdown of New Mexico’s Santa Fe National Forest. The shutdown of the 1.6 million acres came Friday, June 1 – the earliest since 2013. Nearby government lands have also been affected. National parks surrounded by the national forest will remain open, but back-country access will be closed. Bandelier National Monument will be open with some restrictions, but campgrounds are open.
With the hurricane season barely upon us, already a tropical depression has raised problems for RV parks in North Carolina. River Creek Campground in Rutherfordton was hit with flood damage, while in Marion, Mountain Stream RV Park had to be evacuated. All this thanks to Tropical Depression Alberto.
Planning on using your RV for traveling this summer? Then join the other members of the 92 percent class who responded to a Go RVing survey. Those respondents said they’d use their rig as much or more than they did last year. Aside from traveling, what will they be doing? At least 72 percent said sightseeing; 71 percent hitting state and national parks; 69 percent hitting the grill; 66 percent catching up on historic sites; 58 percent hiking; and 42 percent dipping a line for fish.
An unhappy Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association of Canada says RV buyers in the lower 48 best get ready for much higher prices. “About half of the materials for an American-made RV come from Canada, including steel and aluminum. These materials are imported into the United States from Canada, where RVs are manufactured,” stated Jean-Francois Lussier, the association’s chair. “This will inevitably mean increased costs for RVs, punishing consumers in the United States and in Canada.” New tariffs on steel and aluminum imports were put in place June 1. For more on this topic, click here.
Stage II fire restrictions have been put in place in much of Northern Arizona, including all of the Grand Canyon National Park and across the North Kaibab Ranger District. Among other restrictions, campfires are prohibited, as is smoking (other than inside a closed vehicle). For a complete list of restrictions (and exemptions) click here.
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Florida’s Everglades National Park will use hired-gun contractors to blast away pythons with shotguns. The total number of snake hunters allowed will be 120, tasked with finding and eradicating this unwelcome species. Park officials are quick to point out the removal program is not a “hunt,” as such. The reptile mercenaries will make $8.25-$15 an hour, plus $50 for each snake, $25 for every foot of length beyond four feet, and $200 for each python nest removed.
A New Zealand woman has been found after four days of lying stranded and injured in the hot desert of California’s Joshua Tree National Park. Claire Nelson, 36, was hiking alone when she climbed over boulders and fell more than 20 feet, fracturing her pelvis. As temperatures blasted over 100, she ran out of water and survived by drinking her own urine before a helicopter spotted a makeshift flag she was waving. And if you’re wondering, she said her survival drink, “tastes like bad, flat beer.”
Developers proposing a new RV park at South Carolina’s Hilton Head National Golf Course didn’t drive their shot home – as they thought they would – when meeting with county officials. The developer’s attorney apparently thought the meeting would be “an easy putt,” and his client would walk away with an approval with conditions. But county officials wanted to know a lot more detail than developers had provided, and raised more than just turf – they had tough questions, and enough of such that the developers will have to come back with answers at a future meeting. They probably left the meeting not feeling up to par.
RV dealers in Manitoba, Canada, may be feeling a bit relieved, as provincial law is being rewritten in a way that should help them sell used RVs much more quickly. Under existing law, used RVs are classified in such a way that a provincial inspection is required prior to their resale. Under the new regulations, such inspections will no longer be required.
Colorado highways should see significant improvements over the next couple of years as new legislation directs regular money transfers from the state’s general fund to its highway fund. For the next two years that translates to $451 million, addressing a current $9 billion backlog.
An RVer who was apparently looking for a bite of lunch got burnt – but not by the food. Firefighters in McQueeney, Texas, were called to a fifth-wheel and pickup fire at Blake’s Café. Apparently a low-hanging power line hung up on the top of the fifth-wheel, catching it afire, and ending up in total destruction.
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A Texas man is still in touch-and-go condition after killing a rattlesnake – which thereafter nearly killed him. The Lake Corpus Christi man chopped the head off a four-foot rattler with a shovel, then bent down to pick up the deceased reptile. The severed head bit the man. The victim’s wife tried to get him to the hospital by car, but he started having seizures and lost his vision. Paramedics met the couple, and sent him to the hospital my medevac. It took 26 doses of antivenom to help the man, the normal patient takes two to four.
Maybe it’s a new tactic to distract and then snag “the pic-a-nic baskets, BooBoo.” A bomb squad was called in to Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park in Lee County, Illinois, over Labor Day weekend. A large number of guests were evacuated after a bomb threat was made, but no explosives were found.
General RV, an Orange Park, Florida, RV dealership, has been sued by a couple of unhappy customers. Patsy and Leon Carrigg bought a used RV from the outfit in 2016 and say they’ve had many service issues with the rig that the company hasn’t fixed. They claim the company is attempting to “wait out” their three-year warranty. The company’s attorney says the couple was sold the rig “as is,” and says the couple is uncooperative and simply has “buyer’s remorse.” A court will sort out the “they say–it says” issue.
Need a place to overnight while enjoying Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains? Local brewery Devils Backbone hopes you’ll accept their hospitality as they now offer RV camping year-round. It doesn’t hurt that the sites are within walking distance of their brewpub. Located in Roseland, reservations can be made through reserveamerica.com.
What used to be a yurt resort in Camden County, Missouri, won’t become an RV park after all. We reported earlier that Ray Anderson, who bought the 31-acre property, said he wanted to remove the yurts and put in an RV park. Anderson said his million dollar investment would be great for the county, bringing in new tax dollars. Locals disagreed – vociferously – and now county commissioners put a complete thumbs-down on the plan.
A Portland, Oregon couple appeared to have just one last item on their checklist as they prepared to pull away on a trip with their travel trailer. They checked off “fuel tow vehicle,” but when they drove home to hitch up – there wasn’t anything to hitch up to. Thieves had swooped in while they made their fuel run and vamoosed with the trailer.
Some dispersed camping in California’s Sequoia National Forest has been closed down due to safety concerns. Upper Peppermint, Thompson Camp, and Camps 1 – 5 along Lloyd Meadow Road (all above Springville) are closed because of vegetation and soil loss.
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Two Florida developers want to build a 330-site RV park in Kalispell, Montana. The outfits envision a park that caters to a “high-end, physically fit clientele,” and if approved would be developed near the Great Northern Bike Trail. The developers say of the upper-end charges for users: “This higher price structure will attract clients of good standing wanting exceptional treatment and accommodations.”
Wildlife at Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park are putting the emphasis on the first syllable. Over the past week, two people were attacked near the Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel. Last weekend, a 51-year-old woman from Las Vegas was kicked several times by a cow elk; then last Tuesday, a 53-year-old woman got the same treatment, being kicked in the head and body. Both report the cow elk was in the company of a calf, although park officials aren’t sure if it’s the same elk. Then on Wednesday, a 59-year-old woman was gored by a bison at Fountain Paint Pot in the Lower Geyser Basin, as she and a group of people were walking along a boardwalk.
Summer is on the way, but camping is way off at Buckhannon, West Virginia’s Middle Fork Campground. Many of its “guests” pay a $915 annual fee to pay for water, electric, and road maintenance in the privately owned campground. Trouble is, says the campground owner, a lot of folks haven’t paid their dues, and the power has been off since April. Other members say they’ve paid their dues, and are angry that they have no juice. The local health department has revoked licenses for the campground due to the lack of power and the water that it supplies.
A small-town Washington newspaper is calling attention to the loss of at least 10 ocean beach campsites. No, don’t blame this one on neighbors protesting lowered property values; rather, according to the Chinook Observer, the loss is due to beach erosion, and the finger can be pointed back to “powerful vested interests.” These interests, say the Observer, lean on the Army Corps of Engineers to keep the local shipping lanes open. Fine and dandy, but it’s what the Corps does with (or in actuality doesn’t do with) the dredge materials that is leading to the deterioration of Cape Disappointment State Park. Read the Observer’s findings and recommendations here.
Firefighters from four Washington districts were called to a fire that burned 20+ acres of land, damaged a travel trailer, and partly burned a home. To save a row of houses, one man mounted a bulldozer and cut a quick-and-dirty fire line. Homeowners armed themselves with garden hoses to push back at the flames. In the end, the cause was found: A man using a blowtorch to attempt to evict gophers from his property near Richland let things get away from him. No word on damages to gopher domain.
City council members in Broken Bow, Nebraska, will soon decide whether to expand their existing municipal RV park – by two full-hookup sites. The local park board recommended the addition, noting the total cost would run anywhere from $8,000 to $10,000.
Don’t try to insure your RV after the damage is done. That’s the lesson for a Kennewick, Washington, couple who bought a travel trailer for $46,000 on September 11, 2016; then bought an insurance policy on it on September 24; then tried to file a claim on damage they say was related to a windstorm later that night. The insurance company “smelled a rat,” and discovered winds in the area at the time were only 7 mph. The couple back-pedaled on the claim, telling the insurance company that the RV dealer who sold them the rig suggested they file the claim, and they’d drop their request – a bit too late: A judge recently sentenced Colby and Jessica Getchell, 34 and 33, respectively, to five days’ jail time on a plea-bargain deal for presenting a false claim.
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