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Sunday, September 25, 2022
Non-Members (advertising supported) edition
Campground Crowding: Do these things and you’ll be met with more kindness and gratitude from campground owners
RV sales have skyrocketed and more people than ever are taking up RVing. The result is campground crowding like never before! In this weekly column, RV Travel readers discuss their experiences. This week our readers discuss “the filthy, disrespectful campers who ruin it for the rest of us” and how campers should live by the “camper’s creed.” Another RVer says the answer to campground crowding is boondocking, while another is philosophical about “how we do life is up to us individually. The where and how is also a choice.” Read more.
The State of RVing, Part 2: City governments playing hardball against homeless RVers
By Randall Brink
The RV news heavily focuses on homeless persons using RVs for shelter, often in urban encampments. Most major cities have reported efforts to clear out the encampments and move the RVs and other vehicles used for shelter. “I would be an idiot to sit here and tell you that things are better today than they were five years ago with regard to homelessness,” Portland [OR] Mayor Ted Wheeler told the Associated Press. “People in this city aren’t stupid. They can open their eyes.” … Homelessness is the “most important issue facing our community, bar none.” Wheeler said. Read more.
Truck owner says he’ll scrap rig over “deleted” emissions equipment
By Russ and Tiña De Maris
File this under “cautionary tale.” New Jersey resident Mike Sebold listed his 2008 Dodge Ram 2500 for sale on Facebook. He pointed out in the ad that some emissions equipment had been “deleted,” as the term goes for removing such mandated equipment. His truck no longer had an exhaust gas recirculation system, and he’d installed an emissions tuner. It wasn’t long after the ad went up that he got a letter from the State of New Jersey. No, the state wasn’t interested in buying the truck. New Jersey’s Department of Environmental Protection has a Diesel Enforcement Program. The letter Sebold received was a notice that he was in violation of state law… Continue reading.
Has RVing slowdown begun?
By Andy Zipser
After a couple of hothouse years in which RVs and anything to do with them seemingly exploded across the landscape, the first hints of an impending cooldown have become visible, even as broader underlying trends suggest a deeper downturn than many industry participants might be prepared to weather. In that regard, two sets of recently announced numbers specific to RVs and RVers are especially telling. Read more.
Experience life in an 1850 gold rush tent town next month
COLOMA, Calif.— California State Parks invites the public to “Discover Your Adventure” during “Coloma Gold Rush Live!” at Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park. Join park staff and docents October 7–9, 2022, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in a re-creation of a gold rush tent town of 1850. Learn more.
Fights break out in campground over who reserved campsites
Sunnyside County Park in Linn County, Oregon, was anything but peaceful at times this summer as “campsite pirates” picked fights over sites they claimed they reserved, but others argued were theirs. The park near the town of Sweet Home includes 165 campsites for RVs and tents, 42 of which are first-come, first-served. Read more.
Here is the current edition of our photo contest. See if your submitted photo made the first cut, and then vote for your favorite. Once you’ve voted, 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!
Today’s RV review…
Tony writes, “This trailer offers a really good floor plan. As mentioned, a friend of mine has a Flagstaff with the same floor plan. It’s also a good option to offer customers a choice of high content/high value versus a more affordable/lower value proposition.”
Read all other RV reviews by clicking here.
September 18–24, 2022
One of the co-founders of Grand Design RV, Bill Fenech, is now among five men who are launching Brinkley RV, to be based on 252 acres in Goshen, Indiana, which is in the area where most American RVs are manufactured. The company will build “premium fifth wheels and travel trailers.” It is currently advertising “Coming in 2023.”
Monday’s earthquake in Mexico had quite an effect on a U.S. National Park. About a half-hour after the 7.6 quake hit Colima and Michoacán states, rangers at Death Valley National Park shot video of a mini-tsunami in Devil’s Hole. Water in the normally placid dwelling place of the endangered Devil’s Hole pupfish splashed up four feet high. Pupfish survive on a diet of algae, which in the shakeup was decidedly disturbed, but park officials say they’ve survived earlier episodes of algae shakeup.
Work campers take note: Target expects to hire up to 100,000 seasonal workers in stores and supply chain facilities this year, about the same as last year. Starting wage range is $15 to $24 an hour. Walmart said it expects to hire about 40,000 workers for the holidays, down from approximately 150,000 U.S. store associates last year.
The southbound lanes of Interstate 75 about 30 miles north of Tampa, Florida, were closed temporarily Wednesday after a semitrailer carrying cases of Coors Light crashed, turning the highway into a silver sea of beer cans. Nobody was hurt. And, no word if any motorists were able to scoop up any of the booty.
The U.S. Forest Service has announced more than $37 million in investments to improve vital recreation infrastructure located on national forests and grasslands. These investments are made possible by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which devotes unprecedented resources to rural infrastructure improvements, including repairs on national forest lands. The funding, which includes $19 million for recreation sites and $18 million for cabins and historic buildings, aims to improve the nation’s recreation infrastructure. Investments in recreation sites will fund maintenance and repairs, build restroom facilities, improve and expand individual campsites, install and upgrade power lines, and make other infrastructure improvements.
Just in time for Halloween, visitors can discover the art of making chocolate. Learn about its Mayan roots to the innovations of the 19th century. Join park team members from 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Oct. 1, at the Harry S. Truman Birthplace State Historic Site. Demonstrations include each step of the chocolate-making process from cacao pod to flavored chocolate. This event is free and open to the public. Harry S Truman Birthplace State Historic Site is located at 1009 Truman St #1543 in Lamar, Missouri. For more information, call 417-682-2279.
Easily one of the most identifiable desert icons, the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) will be celebrated October 3-7, 2022, at Joshua Tree National Park and other desert conservation organizations. The desert tortoise has been on the earth an estimated 15-20 million years, yet today, populations are on the decline. Mortality can be attributed to multiple factors including habitat loss, climate change, and unnatural raven predation.
Neighbors are concerned that an expansion of the campground at Red River Valley Fairgrounds in West Fargo, N.D., will bring “drug trafficking” and “human trafficking” to the area, according to INForum. The existing campground is currently operated by the Red River Fair, but the fair association would like to add an additional 130 sites for campers in what is currently a vacant lot. The $3.5 million project would add to the current 71 sites, where 25 to 40 campers are turned away per week, according to fair association CEO Cody Cashman.
Don’t drink the water, folks! Forever chemicals (PFOS and PFOA) have been found in several wells near Riverside State Park in Spokane, WA. The EPA deems water containing 70 nanograms per one trillion liters of water to be dangerous to drink, and a few of these wells were at 70 or close to it. PFOS and PFOA are known to cause cancer, reproductive problems, and developmental issues. They cannot be broken down naturally in the environment.
Police in Rexburg, Idaho, have arrested a man they say was caught drunkenly running around a campground with a pelican. The Madison County Sheriff’s Department was alerted to the bizarre disturbance at the Warm Slough Campground where 3 inebriated men “had caught a pelican and were carrying it around the campground.” Responding officers initially gave the three men a warning for harassing the bird. But two of the men then began harassing officers, one of them “causing a disturbance with the families and kids on the river’s edge.” That man was arrested after grabbing for an officer’s vest, resulting in charges of misdemeanor disturbing the peace and resisting or obstructing officers. It was not immediately clear if that was the same man holding the pelican.
Death Valley National Park is still recovering from flash floods in August and September. While the National Park Service (NPS) opened parts of Badwater Road and Wildrose late afternoon on September 21, many roads are still closed, leaving no road connecting the eastern and western parts of the park. Most park entrance roads are closed. Drivers should check the park’s website for current road conditions: Mapping apps should not be relied upon because they have been repeatedly showing closed roads as open.
Shares of Camping World Holdings crashed on Friday, after an analyst lowered its price target in a research note. As of 1:10 p.m. ET, Camping World stock was down 10%. Camping World’s management expects the trend toward used vehicles to continue. But it doesn’t expect a broad market pullback. Regarding whether people would stop using RVs, CEO Marcus Lemonis said, “Never happened before, through any gas crisis, through any interest rate crisis, or any war or anything, it’s never happened.”
Residents of Forest Hill, California, were recently returned to their homes after evacuating because of the Mosquito Fire. Now, they are objecting to proposed campgrounds being built in the nearby Auburn State Recreation area. “We don’t need them. There’s enough camping up here, and the place they’re talking about putting them in … it’s hard to access and if a fire ever starts down there, we’re gonna be in more trouble than this one, I think,” said Deborah Casteel. She and local worker Charles Jones don’t see the benefit. “It’ll create more fire hazards with campfires and visitors trashing the area,” Jones said. “A group of people, when they start drinking, having fun, partying and stuff, the next thing you know, it’s just horrible.”
Park rangers at Arizona’s Lost Dutchman State Park had a surprise guest last Wednesday when a roadrunner was found in their truck. Why was the bird in the passenger seat looking out the window? Well, maybe to get to the other side, or maybe to escape a coyote…
Heavy rains closed the main Scenic Drive in Capitol Reef National Park in Central Utah on Wednesday. Despite the road being paved, the road did flood, which lead to dirt roads being washed out in many spots.
Campspot, a campground management platform, released a free e-book containing 12 tips for growing a campground’s revenue. The e-book, Growth Strategies for Your Campground Business, covers a wide variety of topics including establishing a strong foundation for a campground, marketing the property, and driving incremental revenues.
Beginning later this month, qualified veterans in Arizona will be eligible to receive a tax exemption for one vehicle or trailer. The change in state law will grant a full Vehicle License Tax exemption to a Purple Heart recipient that was honorably discharged from military service beginning September 24, 2022. Proof of honorable discharge and award of a Purple Heart Medal is required.
A new study by AMA Research shows that the RV insurance market is booming around the world. Top players in the market include Good Sam Insurance, National General Insurance (Allstate), Blue Sky RV Insurance, RV America Insurance, Safeco Insurance (Liberty Mutual), and Foremost Insurance Group.
Well, yes, some trailers DO look like turtles
On Tuesday, Sept. 20, the United States Park Police (USPP) arrested Shaun Ray Deaton, 44, of Bloomington, Ind., for allegedly vandalizing the outside base of the Washington Monument with paint. Deaton was charged with trespassing, tampering and vandalism.
Bish’s RV has opened new locations in Billings and Bozeman, Mont., Longview, Texas, and Richmond, Va., bringing the total Bish’s RV dealerships to 20.
The Bureau of Land Management, Kemmerer and Pinedale Field Offices (Wyoming), will winterize the water systems at the Fontenelle Creek Campground in Lincoln County, and Scab Creek Campground and Warren Bridge Campground in Sublette County during the last week of September. No water will be available at the sites for the remainder of the season and no fees will be charged.
Keystone RV closed one of its Indiana manufacturing plants (#705) on Friday, putting 345 employees out of work.
FMCA has opened registration for its March 15-23, 2023, International Convention to be held in Perry, Georgia. General registration is $250 per couple for all event activities and on-site parking. Thirty- and 50-amp electric service is available for an additional fee. RVers who want to attend the convention as full registrants but not stay on-site can register for $185. To make a reservation call (800) 543-3622 or register online.
Yosemite National Park has lifted fire restrictions due to a recent decrease in fire danger. Ditto for Oregon’s Crater Lake National Park.
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
Ford logo shortage holds back deliveries on some trucks
Ford has delayed delivery of some vehicles because of a shortage of its blue brand-name badges and nameplates that specify models. Among the vehicles involved are F-series pickups.
Which of these best describes the way you use your RV?
Do you use it for weekend outings, or for heading south in the winter? Or do you live in it full-time? Or …? That’s our poll question today.
HAVE YOU SEEN THIS STOLEN RV?
A belated report from Franklin, New York. This week the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office asked for help in locating a Keystone Ultra-Lite travel trailer, stolen around August 14. The trailer was stolen from a residence on Case Hill Road, and last known with New Jersey plate, TXP17X. If you have information, contact the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division at 607-832-5555.
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.
Did you miss yesterday’s RV Travel?
If so, stories you missed:
• Cover story: When hurricanes hit the headlines, your RV hits the road
• Featured article: Rant: Shame on the RV manufacturers! Why would they do this?
• Linemen and other workers outnumbering snowbirds. RV parks are a-changin’
• Why you need to be nice to your RV dealer
• RV Service Centers and Repairs Report: ‘They LOST my couch and put a hole in my recliner!’
• My Weirdest RV Moment: “Baboons sit on our RV, pooping, tearing off wipers”
… and much more
?? MYSTERY PRODUCT OF THE DAY ??
There’s no way we’d last more than five minutes with this. We’d be rolling on the floor laughing! Wouldn’t you?
Latest fuel prices
Here are the latest U.S. average prices per gallon of gasoline and diesel fuel as of September 19, 2022:
Regular unleaded gasoline: $3.65 [Calif.: $5.24]
Change from week before: Down 4 cents; Change from year before: Up 47 cents.
Diesel: $4.96 [Calif.: $6.15]
Change from week before: Down 7 cents; Change from year before: Up $1.58.
My voice is tender, my waist is slender and I’m often invited to play. Yet wherever I go I must take my bow or else I have nothing to say. What am I?
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Upcoming RV shows
It won’t be long before RV show season gets underway. Click here for a directory of upcoming shows.
Recipe of the Day
by Cathie Valentine from Graniteville, SC
One of our favorite things to order for take-out is orange chicken. Cathie’s easy recipe means we can make it at home anytime a craving hits. Using corn starch helps to make the chicken extra crispy. The sauce is sweet, but not too sweet, and the chicken soaks up all its delicious orange flavor. Serve over steamed rice for the perfect at-home take-out dish.
Brain teaser answer:
The Perfect Scam Podcast
Every Sunday we present a podcast from AARP about scams and how crooks are stealing your money, often via telemarketing. Their efforts are often most successful with people 65 years and older who fall victim to the scammers’ sophisticated techniques. Here is this week’s episode.
The funniest book for the kids (you’ll laugh too!)
If you haven’t seen the video of the grandmother reading her grandson the hilarious book “The Wonky Donky,” watch it here. You’ll laugh through the whole thing, we promise! If you want a copy for yourself, or your kids, grandkids, or your favorite campground neighbor, you can buy it here for a great price.
Chop suey is not a native Chinese dish. It is believed to have originated in a California mining camp. The cook supposedly threw together what he had called “chop suey,” a phonetic translation of a Mandarin term meaning “various things.”
Today in History
RVtravel.com All-Star Team
Publisher: 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.
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