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Sunday, March 13, 2022
Non-Members (advertising supported) edition
How will portable generator rules REALLY affect RVers?
Last month the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced it was mulling over “rule making.” The rules could affect portable generator manufacturers. The agency is tasked with keeping citizens safe from the dangers of household products. CPSC sees death from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning associated with portable generator usage as a priority. Will the CPSC write new generator rules and, if so, how will RVers be affected?
RV transporters squeezed by record fuel prices, starting to park their trucks
Record prices at the pump may be putting a new kink at the very end of the RV industry’s supply chain and could prevent RV buyers from getting their new rigs. RV transporters are an essential yet mostly unheralded segment of the RV manufacturing industry. In most cases, the folks who move new RVs from factories to dealerships are independent contractors working for larger dispatching firms that contract with manufacturers. Continue reading.
State laws, new legislation take aim at frivolous campground lawsuits
The Michigan State House of Representatives began considering legislation on March 1, 2022, to limit the liability of the state’s campground owners and operators for frivolous campground lawsuits. Michigan State Rep. Ken Borton (R-Gaylord) introduced the bipartisan measure, along with six other Republicans and two Democrats. Borton said that the bill is intended to “ensure Michigan campgrounds can continue to serve as natural, safe vacation destinations.” Similar legislation takes aim at other campground lawsuits in other states, too. Learn more.
Campground Crowding: They paid in person, but a later online reservation got them kicked out
RV sales have skyrocketed and more people than ever are taking up RVing. The result is campground crowding like never before! In this weekly blog, RV Travel readers discuss their experiences. This week Nanci relates her personal experience in attempting to book a campsite at one of their favorite campgrounds. She was all prepared and at the very opening of the reservations she clicked to send in her information—but all of the large campsites were gone in 30 seconds! Also, readers have tips about how to reserve a site. And one camper paid for their site in person, set up camp, only to be told two hours later they had to move because someone made an online reservation for the site. (What?!) All that and more here.
OPINION: I am so mad about this. What if this happened to you?
By J.R. Montigel
Watch this video. It might make your blood boil! It did mine! First, let me say something so you know where I’m coming from. When I am not away with my RV (which is often), I live in a middle-class neighborhood. Everybody keeps their homes up nicely, with lawns weeded and mowed. I have never seen a neighbor repair a transmission in his driveway. So how would I feel if somebody dropped off a junker motorhome that won’t even operate in the street right in front my house? Continue reading.
Amazon Prime news affecting RVers
by Russ and Tiña De Maris
Selective Amazon delivery delays pummel some RVers. How about you?
Just how “prime” is Amazon Prime? When the big, sell-you-nearly-anything company recently announced price increases for its Prime membership, social media reaction was swift. Words and phrases like “greed” and “record profits” were frequently used. Some suggested dropping memberships. Still, it seems like the love affair with the giant merchandiser will see few people actually cancel. But from our own experience, despite having a Prime membership, seeming selective delivery delays are more than just irksome. Are you a victim of Amazon shipping delays? Read more.
How fast are your Amazon deliveries compared to other towns?
Wondering if your Amazon deliveries are taking longer than other customers in your area? Here’s the step-by-step process so you can check up on the giant retailer. Read this, then let’s compare notes.
RELATED: What percentage of RVtravel.com readers have an Amazon Prime account? It’s hard to believe the results, but we assure you they are accurate.
Today’s RV review…
Tony writes, “Today we’re reviewing the best-selling motorhome in the U.S., the Thor A.C.E. 33.1, a smaller gasoline-powered motorhome. There are a lot of reasons that this is America’s favorite motorhome, and I’m guessing that price is absolutely one of those.”
Tony reviewed six other RVs this week! Did you miss them? Click here to read.
Have an RV you want to see reviewed by Tony? Hop over to his forum and tell him!
March 6–12, 2022
Bananas Are Us: In Seattle, feel free to grab a free banana from this repurposed travel trailer at the Amazon headquarters in the South Union district. The company provides the healthy snacks to anyone who wants one. There are other more traditional-looking stands in the area. The first community banana stand debuted in 2016.
The owners of Whistle Stop RV Park, set to open May 1 in Sumpter, Oregon, are offering $500 for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of whoever vandalized their sign. “It was a childish, disgusting act,” Jon Patterson wrote on the park’s Facebook page.
Preliminary data from the Japan Recreational Vehicle Association reveals that campervan sales in Japan in 2021 grew by 9% over 2020 and were triple those of ten years ago. In 2021, 136,000 campers were owned by Japanese motorists, up by 6% over the previous year. Like in the USA, the manufacturers’ biggest challenge is to deliver campers quickly to customers. “Our products used to be delivered within three to six months, but some models currently take one-and-a-half years,” said Kenji Araki, president of Nuts RV Company, whose camper sales increased by 20% in 2021 over 2019.
Red Haw State Park in Chariton, Iowa, is closed after a tornado on March 5th damaged the park and killed one person. Damage was sustained at the park’s campgrounds, boat docks, bait house, beach shelters, and a storage building. Park officials are asking people to stay away while they clean up and make repairs.
Over-snow travel on the roads in Yellowstone National Park will end for the season March 15 at 9 p.m. Weather permitting, some park roads will reopen to automobile travel April 15. Most park lodging and camping for this season is already reserved. If you don’t already have a camping reservation for this season, it’s extremely unlikely you’ll find one in the park or nearby. No camping or overnight vehicle parking is allowed except in a designated campground. Also, the National Park Service is beginning work on $155 million of road and bridge upgrades in the park this summer. The work is expected to cause major traffic delays. Among the projects: 22 miles of the Grand Loop Road from the West Thumb of Yellowstone Lake to Old Faithful will be repaved.
Two people are dead after a crash last week on I-40 east of Amarillo, Texas. A 2016 Winnebago Adventurer towing a 2012 Honda CR-V drove off the road and into the ditch. The RV continued westbound up the overpass embankment, vaulted off it, and ended up in the ditch west of FM 2373. Occupants Richard Rogers, 75, and Elizabeth Rogers, 68, of Fredericksburg, Virginia, died at the scene. In the photo, remains of the motorhome are to the right.
RVers who love to camp along the waterfront at the Embarcadero in Morro Bay, California, will need to find another spot. The Morro Bay City Council voted 4-1 this week to end a pilot program that had created 19 RV sites on the waterfront… More on that here.
Seasonal campers at an RV park near Egg Harbor, Wisconsin, got a rude jolt this month when they received a letter from the park’s new owners telling them their summer camping rates will increase by 71%. Yikes! Read more.
The U.S. Forest Service has announced it will close the Lake Three and Mineral Lake Campgrounds in Wisconsin’s Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forests. The campgrounds were slightly used with other sites in the area able to handle the local demand. The Forest Service estimates it will spend $17,500 to tear out vault toilets, remove water pumps and barricade entrances to vehicle access. The 1.5-million-acre forest still has more than 40 developed campgrounds.
A new survey from AAA found that last year 1 in 10 drivers sustained vehicle damage significant enough to warrant a repair after hitting a pothole. With an average price tag of almost $600 per repair, damage caused by potholes cost drivers a staggering $26.5 billion in 2021 alone. “In many parts of the country, winter roads will likely give way to pothole-laden obstacle courses,” said Greg Brannon, AAA’s director of automotive engineering. “When a vehicle hits a pothole with any kind of force, the tires, wheels, and suspension get the brunt of the impact.”
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) intends to implement new overnight camping fees at three campgrounds along the Dalton Highway beginning this summer to keep pace with growing maintenance costs. The highway is Alaska’s only road connection between the interior of the state and the North Slope. The BLM recorded a 409% increase between 2011 and 2018 in traffic along the route, with about 15,000 visits annually to the sites impacted by these changes. More on that here.
Congaree National Park in South Carolina plans to welcome the public back to watch the park’s synchronous fireflies in May. Public viewing is set for May 20-22 and May 27-29. To protect critical firefly habitat and provide optimum visitor experience, viewing will be limited to 120 vehicles per night. Tickets will be required to enter the park in the evenings on those dates and will be available through a lottery system hosted at www.recreation.gov/ticket/facility/300008. (SOURCE: National Park Traveler)
A bill that provides immunity for South Dakota campground owners whose guests encounter the inherent risks of outdoor camping is headed for the governor’s desk. Both chambers of the South Dakota Legislature approved the bill that cuts the risk of lawsuits for campground owners who say they’ve been sued for acts of nature beyond their control. One campground owner reported how silly lawsuits could be. She recalled a camper who was outraged because a songbird woke her on the only morning she could sleep in. The camper demanded a refund on her space or she would sue.
Do you have some extra land at home or in your RV park for a new pet? If, yes, here’s an idea that could earn you both an animal and some cash, to boot. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will hold a wild horse and burro adoption event in Inola, Oklahoma, March 25-26, at the Riverbend Arena. The event will feature 120 wild horses and burros. If you’d like to take home one of the “untrained” animals, the BLM will offer you up to a $1,000 bounty.
Proposals for two new RV parks along the shores of Great Sacandaga Lake northwest of Albany, New York, are drawing criticism from neighbors and a closer look by the Adirondack Park Agency. … Residents of both towns have hired attorneys and filed legal complaints against the RV park plans. Neighbors say they are concerned about increased noise and traffic, as well as damage to wildlife and water quality. Read more.
RVshare, a peer-to-peer RV rental marketplace, has launched the RVshare Campground Partnership Program which allows RV park operators to earn revenue from RV rental bookings. Operators can list RVshare units on their website to earn commission as well as list stationary, on-property units at no charge. The Florida and Alabama RV Park & Campground Associations were the first to join the program.
Renee and Jim Agredano have been full-time RVers since 2007. On this half-hour podcast from National Park Traveler, Renee discusses RVing through the National Parks System.
An increase in camping and campfires along the ridge roads in Southern California’s Santa Ynez Mountains worried fire officials that a wildfire could race down to the coastal cities of Santa Barbara, Montecito, Goleta, Carpinteria and Summerland. Hence, campfires are now banned for two years along the ridgeline from Gaviota to the Ventura County border.
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore has begun charging visitors entrance fees for the first time in the 55-year history of the tourist destination in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. On Jan. 1, campground fees increased from $20 to $25 per night at the park’s Little Beaver Lake, Twelvemile Beach, and Hurricane River campgrounds. Congress designated Pictured Rocks as America’s first national lakeshore in 1966. It is known for its colorful sandstone cliffs, rock formations, waterfalls and sand dunes.
A new off-road RV resort near Capitol Reef National Park is now open. Offroad RV Resort near Caineville, Utah caters to large, self-contained RVs. The park is operated as a “dark sky” facility with nothing to block the stars. Amenities include a robust power grid, a reverse osmosis water system, sewer hookups and plenty of space to maneuver. Many of the sites are 100-foot-long pull-throughs. Find out more here.
Snowstorm forces RV to side of the road. Residents of Little Cottonwood Canyon near Park City, Utah, weren’t happy last weekend when several out-of-state travelers decided to pull over to the side of a county highway for the night in the midst of a sudden snowstorm. An RV from Texas broke down on the side of the road, and several other travelers pulled over behind the RV for the night. Local police weren’t happy with the situation and asked all of the vehicles to relocate. Part of the post on the Utah Department of Transportation’s Facebook page read: “Friendly PSA: the shoulder of S.R. 210 is NOT a KOA. …”
The Bureau of Land Management has hosting opportunities to live and work as volunteer camp hosts at Eagle Lake and along the Bizz Johnson National Recreation Trail, both in Lassen County, California. Interested? Contact Stan Bales at (530) 252-5311.
According to RV Industry Association’s recent Go RVing RV Owner Demographic Profile, 3% of RVers own truck campers. Young families make up 36% of camper owners, 52% are Millennials and Gen Zers, while 28% are first-time owners.
This year’s camping season at North Carolina’s Cape Hatteras National Seashore’s Cape Point and Frisco campgrounds will run April 2 to November 28. The National Seashore’s Ocracoke Campground and Oregon Inlet Campground are open all year.
Camping along the waterfront in Morro Bay, California, will end April 1 after complaints from local citizens. The 19-site area that overlooks famous Morro Rock was established as a pilot program to generate revenue for the city’s underfunded harbor department.
Lance Camper will invest $2.1 million in an assembly plant and warehouse in Decatur, Indiana. The company expects to create 120 to 140 new jobs over the next two years, according to the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette. Lance aims to start operations in July.
Headed to Alaska this summer and plan to work once there to pay some bills? Here’s a good source of job listings in the tourism industry. Maybe there’s something for you.
Five people were displaced and two dogs died Thursday in a fire involving three RVs in a West Oakland “safe” RV parking area. The fire was the third in the area in the past 10 days. The fire department concluded the fire was accidentally caused by an occupant of one of the RVs who lost control when burning material.
Rustic Acres Campground in New Douglas, Illinois, will reopen April 1 as Rustic Acres Jellystone Park, becoming the fourth Yogi Bear-themed campground in Illinois.
Sequoia National Park on Friday fully reopened the Giant Forest area that was threatened by a huge wildfire last year. Giant Forest was closed to the public in mid-September due to the KNP Complex Fire, which burned more than 137 square miles (355 square kilometers), mostly within Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks.
Lake Powell at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, the country’s second-largest reservoir, is expected to shrink even more before the spring snowmelt begins. It’s currently 173 feet below capacity, and just 36 feet above where there won’t be enough water to drive its power plant that provides electricity to an estimated 3 million people.
The rates to stay at Citizen’s Lake Campground in Monmouth, Illinois, have been raised from $19 to $25 a night. The monthly fee increased from $330 to $350.
Key International, the development parent company of Embassy Suites, has purchased the 208-space Ocean Grove RV Resort just south of the hotel in St. Augustine Beach, Florida, for $15.1 million in cooperation with partners Wexford Real Estate Investors.
Fast winds spread a fire from one travel trailer to three others at Lake Wellington, Kansas, on Thursday, destroying them all. No injuries were reported. Firefighters were able to save a nearby fifth wheel trailer.
The U.S. Department of the Interior tried to learn how many people were missing from public lands across the USA. Other agencies have done the same. Yet, none could accurately predict. Aficionados of the vanished, reports Outside Magazine, believe the number is at least 1,600, perhaps many times more.
From 2019-21, Colorado Parks and Wildlife received more than 14,000 reports of sightings and conflicts with bears. Nearly one-third of those involved trash cans and dumpsters as an attractant. Be careful when you camp to avoid leaving food or food smells where it can attract Yogi or Boo Boo.
Oregon’s Umatilla National Forest is looking for volunteers to spend the summer as campground hosts at the Jubilee Lake, Woodward, Olive Lake, North Fork John Day and Bull Prairie Lake campgrounds. If interested, contact Roy Vega at email@example.com.
Jeep says it will have its first fully electrified model ready in 2023 and flood every SUV segment with Jeep EVs by 2025. Jeep already has hybrid versions of the Wrangler 4xe and plans to roll out the Grand Cherokee hybrid later this year.
Thor is doing “OK.” These are tough times for many companies around the world … unless your name is Thor Industries. Thor exceeded all analyst earnings estimates for the second quarter of 2022 when it reported record net sales of $3.88 billion. That’s up more than 42% over the same quarter last year.
Lazydays isn’t hurting, either. Lazydays, one of the largest RV dealership organizations in the U.S., beat its own estimates for the fourth quarter of 2021. Lazydays’ fourth quarter net income was $16.9 million, up $14.7 million from the fourth quarter results in 2020.
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.
Trucks and Tow Vehicles
Need to tow? Options abound instead of pickup trucks
The 2022 Outback Onyx Edition XT starts at $36,270. The 2022 Lincoln Navigator has a beginning price of $78,400. The vehicles don’t have much in common, particularly considering the more than $40,000 sticker price difference. But the versatile machines belong to a niche fraternity. According to a new report on MotorTrend.com, the Subaru and Lincoln are among the 15 top alternatives for buyers who need a towing option but don’t want a pickup truck. Learn more.
2023 Ram ProMaster: Lots more stuff, gets handsome
The 2023 Ram ProMaster, a full-sized van designed for businesses, construction job sites and commercial fleets, with a versatile-use towing capacity of 6,900 pounds, debuted recently at National Truck Equipment Association’sdcrf Work Truck Week trade show in Indianapolis, Indiana. According to the manufacturer, the new ProMaster will include best-in-class features like cargo volume, turning radius, standard interior cargo height, load-floor height, cargo width between wheel wells and maximum cargo width. Check it out.
By Russ and Tiña De Maris
Welcome to our regular – albeit seasonal – update on the news from the RVing Capital of the World. If you’re a QZ regular, or just thinking about “dropping in to check it out,” we’ll give you ditties and dollops of what’s happening in and around Quartzsite.
Russ and Tiña will have a new QZ report next week.
How would $7 a gallon gas prices affect your summer travels?
Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded. Feel free to leave a [civil] comment.
HAVE YOU SEEN THIS STOLEN RV?
Security cam footage caught crooks in Polk County, Texas. Police say at least three men in a Chevrolet Avalanche helped themselves to a Jayco travel trailer that was in storage at the Lake Livingston Boat and RV Storage site. The whole thing came down at 1:16 a.m., February 28. Know something? Call the Sheriff’s Office at 936-327-6810 and ask to speak with a detective, or call Crime Stoppers at 936-327-STOP. If your information leads to an arrest, you may be in for a reward.
Did someone rip off your ride? Let us post information on your stolen RV. Email Russ (at) rvtravel.com.
See many more recently stolen RVs. Let’s help find these for their owners and maybe even put the crooks in the slammer. Click here.
RV recalls posted since our last newsletter
Did you miss yesterday’s RV Travel?
If so, stories you missed:
• Cover story: Rising fuel prices could lead to camping cancellations—and opportunities for some RVers
• Featured article: Hanging up the keys? Park models could be the answer to high living costs
• Around the Campfire: RVers discuss ways to save on high fuel prices
• Surfing or searching – Where to find truth about RVing
• Ask Dave: Should I carry a spare tire for my Class C, and is the added weight worth it?
• This affordable air purifier cleans RV’s air of pollen and more in just two minutes
… and much more
Latest fuel prices
Here are the latest U.S. average prices per gallon of gasoline and diesel fuel as of March 7, 2022:
Regular unleaded gasoline: $4.10 [Calif.: $5.19]
Change from week before: Up 49 cents; Change from year before: Up $1.33.
Diesel: $4.85 [Calif.: $5.76]
Change from week before: Up 75 cents; Change from year before: Up $1.71.
????? MYSTERY PRODUCT OF THE DAY ??????
This is hilarious! Every single one of our staff members needs this. Good Times, indeed!
You are in a place called Jack’s World and there is only one law. There is a mirror, but no reflection. There is pizza with cheese, but not sausage. There is pepper, but no salt. There is a door, yet no entrance or exit. What is the law?
Do you subscribe to our RV Daily Tips Newsletter?
Every Monday through Friday you get a short, informational email from us delivered straight to your inbox. Inside each issue you’ll find: quick RV tips, popular articles, reader polls, RV thoughts, helpful resources, a website of the day, RV clubs and organizations, trivia, jokes and more! If you don’t like it, you can easily unsubscribe, but we doubt you’ll want to. Sign up here.
Upcoming RV shows
• Flint Camper & RV Show, March 17-20, Flint, MI
• Acadiana RV, Sport & Boat Show, March 18-20, Opelousas, LA
• Mid-Atlantic RV Expo, March 18-20, Doswell, VA
• Montana RV & Boat Show, March 18-20, Billings, MT
• Reno RV Show, March 18-27, Reno, NV
• FMCA Convention & RV Expo, March 23-26, Tucson, AZ
• Halifax RV Show, March 24-27, Halifax, NS
• Northwest Sportshow, March 24-27, Minneapolis, MN
• New Hampshire RV & Camping Show, March 25-27, Bedford, NH
• Northwest Michigan RV & Camping Show, March 25-27, Traverse City, MI
Recipe of the Day
Who is this woman? Hint: She was (and still is) a famous American sex symbol of the late 20th century — a star of movies and television. Here she is in her latest role as a real estate agent in a brand-new motion picture. So who is she? You’ll need to click here to find out. Another hint: She was a close friend of the legendary horror movie star Vincent Price.
Brain teaser answer:
Everything (each word) in Jack’s World must contain double letters.
Today in History
Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Associate editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Tony Barthel, Mike Gast. Contributors: Mike Sokol, Gail Marsh, Roger Marble, Dave Solberg, Dave Helgeson, Janet Groene, Julianne Crane, Chris Guld, Machelle James, Scott Linden, James Raia, Kate Doherty, J.R. Montigel, Clint Norrell, Randall Brink, Chris Epting, Karel Carnohan, DVM, and Cheri Sicard. Special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Moderators: Gary Gilmore, Linda Brady, Mark Gorrie. 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.
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