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Old 03-11-2010, 05:13 PM   #141
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We own the stuff in the first two pics and the avatar and have an A-Liner hard sided pop-up similar to the one in the third pic on order for pick-up in three weeks. We like to kayak, camp and fish but have decided we're too far into geezerhood to end a long day of paddling by spending the night in a tent. (Been there, done that!) Besides base camping on paddling trips, we're planning on using it for some general touring as well.

It small and light yet has what we need to be comfortable: decent beds, air, heat, mini-kitchen. And the younger club members still tenting won't boo us out of camp like they would if we showed up in a Class A!
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Old 03-11-2010, 05:43 PM   #142
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I have been considering RVing in retirement. So I started looking at destinations and I must say, RV parks I find on the web don't look very appealing. So is this it...or do some of you avoid these retirement traps and actually really enjoy it?
RVing holds zero appeal for me; but we are all different.

Since you are considering it but are hesitant, why not rent for a month and see how it goes? As Martha suggests, try before you buy.
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:16 PM   #143
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Those stream type trailers can be VERY heavy. Not sure if the right has has enough hitch/GWVR rating and stopping power. You have to be very careful about what you tow.

Audrey
Thanks for the tip. I just started my research with the "what looks fun" aspect. I haven't got to the feasibility part yet.
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:21 PM   #144
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Thanks for the tip. I just started my research with the "what looks fun" aspect. I haven't got to the feasibility part yet.
You might be interested in TrailManor. We loved ours for shorter trips (7-10 days).
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:27 PM   #145
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You might be interested in TrailManor. We loved ours for shorter trips (7-10 days).
thanks! - looks perfect. I like the trailmanor floor plans better than the Airstream - and they are real light.
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:52 PM   #146
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thanks! - looks perfect. I like the trailmanor floor plans better than the Airstream - and they are real light.
We towed with a Sequoia -- way bigger than we needed, but sometimes I had to check the rear window to reassure myself it was still back there.

The collapsible is ingenious though it required a few extra minutes and inconvenience. Had one of the 34' models and found it quite comfortable.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:15 PM   #147
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I considered the Trail Manor for a while. I would have no problem towing the largest one with my SUV. However, I decided to get a class C motorhome because I thought that would work better for me.

You see, growing up, we were never taken camping by our parents. Oh, they were travel lovers, but we always ended up in a motel at the end of the day. Being a city rat, I have slept in a tent only two nights in my life, and it was not by choice. A motorhome gives me the feeling more like being in a traditional home, albeit a really small one.

PS. I have passed by KOA campgrounds many times, but have never visited one.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:52 PM   #148
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Most KOAs I avoid. There are a few gems out there however. rvparkreviews.com is pretty good at helping weed the good ones from the bad ones.

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Old 03-11-2010, 08:21 PM   #149
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Surprised to see how sad my life is. We are extreme RVers, our home address is a mail box in a city we have never been to.

We agree about rvparkreviews.com. I should enter more reviews. but we are too busy...uh... traveling. We like the parks with no on-site amenities- we just want S, W and dependable E. We use a VZ Wireless card, and I can't recall the last place it didn't work at least OK.
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Old 03-11-2010, 08:23 PM   #150
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We use a VZ Wireless card, and I can't recall the last place it didn't work at least OK.
That's good to know. I'll be getting one shortly and wondered how well it would work out in the wilds.
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:11 PM   #151
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Ah hah! Some sites are noted "Users say No Overnight Parking" and others left blank in the same town near me. So, it is not a city ordinance, or somehow the law is specific to each store. Or is it at the discretion of the store manager? Also, a user-reported site and not an official one by Walmart.

I also use the yahoo group, walmartrving@yahoogroups.com, to vet free places to overnight. For example, when I passed through Albuquerque late they suggested skipping the walmarts, making it to the west side, and either parking at a casino or at Camping World. They also have a list of walmarts and their status.
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:20 PM   #152
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I also use the yahoo group, walmartrving@yahoogroups.com, to vet free places to overnight. For example, when I passed through Albuquerque late they suggested skipping the walmarts, making it to the west side, and either parking at a casino or at Camping World. They also have a list of walmarts and their status.
Although at ABQ the High Desert RV park is not bad at all for a one- or few-nighter - not far from Camping World. That's where we stay when crossing country fast via I-40. OK - it's not free.

Of course we spent 3+ weeks "free camping" in the heart of downtown ABQ at the Cummins facility, waiting for a new radiator (so not free)! Got snowed on - 11 inches! City got stuck in snow for weeks after this 50 year snowstorm event. Total mess.

Now - that would be a good reason to conclude why RVing sucks - the inevitable breakdowns. They happen. Goes with the territory.

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Old 03-11-2010, 10:16 PM   #153
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I must add this about mobile home parks.

A best friend of my wife lives in a mobile home park in Mesa, a city east of Phoenix. They retire early and apparently are of more limited means. We have visited them. Though they are full-time residents, many (most?) of the park residents are snowbirds, and this is their winter home. The park is nice and clean. The residents, being mostly older folks, are nice, quiet, and courteous.

Compare the people living there to the jerks in a more upscale neighborhood near me. I have seen more than one not slowing to 15mph, or passing other cars in a school zone. Recently, I have seen speed bumps added to a residential street, I guess due to complaints of some residents there. Think about it, this is pretty sad. That area has houses valued from $800K to several $M, even after this housing bubble burst.

So, don't tell me to value a person based on what he/she drives or where he/she lives.
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Old 03-12-2010, 12:16 AM   #154
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Back to RV'ing, I myself would not buy one if I were still working full-time. Come to think of it, what does one do with an RV if he has only 2 or 3 weeks of vacation a year? Fly-n-Drive is the way to do it. Leave the slow-paced travel to the sad folks who have to wonder about what to do all day ;-)

Man, oh man. My grandiose plan of slowly crossing North America would take a long time. It would be limited by the seasons of course, and will have to be spread out over a few years. In between travels, I will come back to my permanent homes to rest, to contemplate the meaning of life. OMG, what rest? I need to do maintenance work, or they would be reduced to ruins. What to do all day, indeed. :-(
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:50 AM   #155
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That's good to know. I'll be getting one shortly and wondered how well it would work out in the wilds.
We, too, use a Verizon Wireless "Card." Actually it is more of a "system." It consists of a UM150VW USB device (the Wireless Card) from Verizon, a CTR500 Router (plugged in to the 110v circuit), and a Wilson RV / Trucker Cellular Antenna (Part #301133).

The reason for the Router is so that both of us can be online at the same time through a LAN.

The RV/Trucker Antenna is probably the most important part of the puzzle because we have never been without 3G access. This, however, is not true of our Blackberry Cell Phones using the same Verizon service. There have been times when we had 3G access through the UM150VW and gotten a "no service" message on the cell phones. (We then use the Wi-Fi function on the Cells Phones routed through the CTR500 network.)

The total cost was about $300 but we have never been without Internet Service while on the road -- whether stopped or going down the road at 60 MPH.

(I should also mention that 3G Store has the most knowledgable staff I have ever worked with -- both the sales people as well as the techicians.)
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:55 AM   #156
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Yep - same here. Kyocera verizon data card. Kyocera router for RV-wide wifi. Large window suction-cup mounted antenna. The Kyocera card itself is very sensitive (more than our voice cellphones), but the antenna does help when we are out in the boonies.

We're occasionally without service because we are in some kind of "hole". But it doesn't happen very often.

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Old 03-12-2010, 08:05 AM   #157
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In between travels, I will come back to my permanent homes to rest, to contemplate the meaning of life. OMG, what rest? I need to do maintenance work, or they would be reduced to ruins. What to do all day, indeed. :-(
If you plan on keeping the two residences long term I suspect a significant portion of your RVing could be maintenance runs traveling between homes...
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Old 03-12-2010, 08:24 AM   #158
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If you plan on keeping the two residences long term I suspect a significant portion of your RVing could be maintenance runs traveling between homes...
And that is an excellent reason to own an RV. It's the most practical way to travel between two residences (assuming they are far apart).

Plenty of snowbirds down here own a summer and winter home, and use a smaller RV to make a leisurely transit.

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Old 03-12-2010, 11:20 AM   #159
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Large window suction-cup mounted antenna.
I attached mine (semi)permanently.

CRW_8632.jpg

The antenna attached to the window is supposed to amplify the cell phone signal. I installed it yesterday -- we will be driving to Annapolis/ DC next week so we'll see if it works.

The "fins" are to direct the hot air/cold air from the Air Conditioner/Heat Pump. The problem with these "hidden" devices is the air flow is not "factory."

The little thing above the doors in the light is the back-up camera.
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Old 03-12-2010, 12:06 PM   #160
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Ours is mounted inside, FWIW.

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