The RV Podcast

Episode 125: The Real Cost of Fulltime RVing

Have you ever dreamed about fulltiming, or at least spending extended period of time in your RV, traveling the country, seeing the sights, free and easy down the road?

Well we have news for you: It’s not free.

Just how much will it cost to live fulltime on the road in your RV? This week, we talk to an accountant who retired at the age of 41 and has been fulltiming with his wife in an RV for the last eight years. They’ve kept track of every cent he’s spent and he has lots to share on this week’s episode.

Also this week, your questions, comments, plus lots of tips and RV news.

Show Notes for Episode #125 Feb. 1, 2017 of Roadtreking - The RV Lifestyle Podcast:

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

This week’s tip comes from our friend Ari Adler… Let’s listen:

I have something to share for your tip of the week that folks might find helpful. Often, people are worried about humidity in their RVs depending on the weather they are traveling through.

I found a mini-dehumidifier -- called an Eva-Dry -- that’s designed to help keep small areas moisture-free. Although it’s target use is really more for closets or bathrooms, the unit works well inside small RVs like Roadtreks.

The Eva-Dry is small and requires no electricity or batteries to operate. It’s designed with a special absorbing silica gel that is odorless and nontoxic. One of the best parts is the little window in the front of the unit that has moisture crystals that start as one color and slowly change to another as the gel absorbs moisture.

Once the crystals completely change color, you simply plug the unit into an electrical outlet for about 8 to 10 hours so it can warm up, dry out and renew itself. The manufacturer claims this process can be done many times for years.

Jessi and I have used this for several months and it seems to be working well in terms of absorbing moisture and humidity from our 2008 190 Popular. The Eva-Dry can either sit somewhere in your rig, or you can use the included hook to hang it up.

The Eva-Dry is available at Camping World and Amazon. Prices vary, but the small version is usually available for less than $25.

Here is a link to the unit at Amazon: http://amzn.to/2koahYM

Thanks, Ari… and for everyone be sure to send me your tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Roadtreking.com. Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox. I love hearing from you!

Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by RadPower Bikes (www.RadPowerBikes.com_… an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping!

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK:

A new RVer named Shelly wonders about where to find the least expensive RV parks in Florida and wonders why the only time there are discounts there is during the summer

Listener Lisa calls in to talk about all the red tape involved in buying a used RV from a private seller in California

And listener Dan asks Mike where he keeps all his toys. Mike talks about a couple of kayak mounts he’s considering (see https://youtu.be/msEJBUO9yz8) for a swing away system, or rvkayakmounts.com, which lets you carry kayaks and up to two bicycle. We’ll have more about RVing with a kayak and the different mount systems on an episode we’re planning for mater in February. The rear mount bike rack Mike currently uses is called the Swagman XC. It holds two bicycles and fits in the rear bumper hitch.

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations.

PET TIP OF THE WEEK

Anyone who has ever had a dog or cat wishes just one thing — that he or she has a healthy and long life. Here are five tips we found from PetMD.com that can help your pet do just that:

  1. FEED A HIGH QUALITY DIET.

Pets fed a high-quality diet have a shiny hair coat, healthy skin, and bright eyes. A good diet can help strengthen your pet’s immune system, help maintain his or her intestinal health, help increase his or her mental functions, help keep joints and muscles healthy, and much more.

2. KEEP YOUR PET LEAN.

Pets that are overweight are at risk for a whole bunch of health issues. Obesity is the number one nutritional disease seen in pets currently and studies have shown that being overweight or obese can shorten a dog or cat’s life span by as much as two years. Why? Being overweight or obese puts your pet at risk for joint disease, heart disease and diabetes, among other things.

  1. TAKE YOUR PET TO THE VETERINARIAN REGULARLY.

All pets, including both dogs and cats, require regular veterinary care. However, veterinary care goes far beyond routine vaccinations, even though those are important. A routine examination by your veterinarian can uncover health issues of which you are unaware. In many cases, an early diagnosis improves the chances of successful treatment. Early diagnosis is also likely to be less costly for you than waiting until your pet’s illness has become advanced and serious before attempting treatment. Be sure to carry a copy of all your pet’s vet records with you when you travel.

4. KEEP YOUR PET’S MOUTH CLEAN.

A common problem among dogs and cats, dental disease and oral health issues can cause your pet pain, making it difficult for him or her to eat. If left untreated, oral health issues may even lead to heart and kidney disease. In addition to regular dental checkups, the most effective means of caring for your pet’s mouth at home is to brush his or her teeth at home. If your pet isn’t a big fan of toothbrushes there are other alternatives as well, including dental diets, treats like Dozers dental chews, and toys. Ask your veterinarian for some recommendations.

  1. DO NOT ALLOW YOUR PET TO ROAM UNSUPERVISED.

Allowing your dog or cat to roam free may seem like you’re doing your pet a favor. However, pets that roam are susceptible to a number of dangers, including automobile accidents, predators, exposure to contagious diseases, exposure to poisons, and more. Additionally, allowing your pet to roam unsupervised may alienate your neighbors should your pet ever "relieve" him- or herself or dig up their campsite

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Dozers Dental Chews, an all natural and healthy treat your dog will love. Available direct through Amazon 

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK

Our guest this week is Howard Payne, who, at the age of 41 with wife Linda, quit a high-paying corporate job in 2005, sold everything they had and made the transition to living in an RV full-time as they travel North America.

An accountant and lawyer by training, Howard documented every cent they spent. He and Linda started a website – RV-Dreams.com – to share their experiences and to offer help to those considering such a move.

His website has a wealth of information, including budget spreadsheet templates to help.

In our interview he talks about” How important it is to be debt free before setting out fulltime in an RV

Just how much you should expect to spend per month to live a frugal fulltime RV lifestyle

How you can supplement your expenses by workcamping

Why you don’t have to get campground reservations as you travel

Resources mentioned:

Howard and Linda’s Website – RV-Dreams.com

Workkamper News - workamper.com

Spreadsheet templates for tracking expenses and budgeting - rv-dreams.com/spreadsheet-downloads.html

Mike’s suggested expense-tracking app: SmartReceipts

The interview of the week is brought to you by http://sunshinestatervs.com/, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK:

Three stories for you this week..

  • RV shipments reached 40 year high in 2016. Read more
  • India’s Irula tribesmen brought to Florida everglades to catch Burmese pythons and teach locals how to do it. Read more
  • Harsh winter in U.S. western states brutal on wildlife. Read more

This portion of the podcast is brought to you by Alde  the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

Verizon's Steve Van Dinter reports on some Valenine’s Day Tech Gifts

Flowers and chocolate are typically first to mind when it comes to showing your sweetheart how much you care for them this time of year. However, to mix it up this February, consider giving the gift of tech. It’s not only a more thoughtful option, it’s something they’ll be able to use the whole year through! Or incorporate a little technology to help make your Valentine’s evening a bit more special. 

For instance, with Google Home, you can start playing your sweetie’s favorite songs just by saying a few keywords. Or record a love poem and ask Google Home to play it for your special someone. And if you have Nest installed at home, turning up the heat is as easy as saying “OK Google, turn up the heat.”

Wish you could travel this Valentine’s Day but don’t have time or funds to do it? Grab a Daydream View VR headset and take your loved one around the world without having to leave the comfort of your couch. And make the experience a 4-D by serving up special French treats while you stroll the virtual streets of Paris! Ooh la la!

Not a fan of crowds at the local movie theater? Make your own. With the Moto Z Droid, you can turn any flat surface into a screen. Just snap on an Insta-Share projector to the phone, dim the lights and now you’ll have a screen up to 70 inches wide! Pair your phone with one or two UE Boom speakers and you’ll swear you weren’t at home! 

No matter what you choose to do, most importantly cherish the moment you’re sharing with the one you love.

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide. 

RV CALENDAR

Four big shows for you this weekend across North America,,,

Cincinnati-Dayton RV Show
February 2-5
Airport Expo Center
Vandalia, OH

Fort Wayne RV & Camping Show
February 2-5
Allen County War Memorial Coliseum
Fort Wayne, IN

St. Louis RV Vacation & Travel Show
February 2-5
America’s Center 
St. Louis, MO

Hamilton RV Show & Sale
February 3-5
Players Paradise Sports Complex 
Stoney Creek, ON, Canada

 

 

Direct download: RT125.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 4:26pm EDT

Episode 124 -What to do with all those photos you take on your RV trips?

RVers love to take photos and these days, it’s more apt to be with our smartphones. But what do you do with them? How do you keep from running out of space? And what’s the best way to share those great memories? To help us answer those questions we talk with our RV buddies Jim and Chris Guld – better known as the Geeks on Tour.

Chris has just written a great book called Mrs. Geek’s Guide to Google Photos and we chat about why – no matter what platform your smartphone is on Apple or Android – this amazing and totally free app need to be on your device.

Plus RV Tips, suggestions about RVing with pets, traveling tech suggestions, RV News and much, much more!

Show Notes for Episode #124 Jan. 25, 2017 of Roadtreking - The RV Lifestyle Podcast: 

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

As we said earlier, we are just back from our annual Roadtreking winter campout in Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula. Like all our gatherings, I love meeting fellow RVers and picking up valuable tips from them about little things that make the RV lifestyle more convenient. And I came back with a bunch of them from our latest adventure.c

Here’s one you will find particularly helpful if you camp in snowy or muddy country. Nobody likes the thought of getting stuck in your RV. Our friend Jan Matthews found a very handy little product that she always carries with her…after learning the hard way why such a product is needed.

The product is called the Mr. Emergency Snow n’ Mud Track. Jan found hers at Walmart. It’s also available at Amazon for $28.

And be sure to send me your tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Roadtreking.com. Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox.

I love hearing from you!

Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by RadPower Bikes (www.RadPowerBikes.com_… an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes.

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK:

Jim asks about Mike’s experience with the   Professional Grade weBoost Drive 4G-X + RV Trucker Essentials Kit – 470510-RV. It comes with a big external antenna. It is most powerful in-vehicle booster certified in the US and Canada and enhances 4G LTE, as well as 3G and 2G network signals, up to 32x. Mike shares his thoughts. Jim also asks about Wi-Fi boosters and if Mike recommends them. Mike shares why he doesn’t.

An Oregon listener with a new Navion Motorhome isn’t sure whether he needs to winterize his RV and wonders about using the bathroom at night and having the black water tank freeze. We explain that RVs used in below freezing weather for extended periods of time should be winterized. And you flush the toilets with antifreeze.

An email asking about winter RV use came in from readers Sue ands Bob, who ask: What do you use for traction?  RT says no chains and I can see why as there is little to no clearance and if they broke they could do some serious damage. In Oregon they will not let you, in some circumstances go over a pass without traction devices. Plus, I'm not so sure how comfortable we would be driving in snowy or icy conditions. 

We talk about it and how we have never had a problem with traction or the need for chains.

A California listener asks how long they can boodock on the Pacific Coast Highway . Here’s a post Campskunk did on the blog about the area - http://roadtreking.com/boondocking-pacific-coast-highway-north-ft-bragg-ca/ There’s a stretch of the Pacific Cast Highway there where you can honest to goodness boondock – camp right on the side of the highway overlooking the ocean. 

To understand this, you have to look at the tangle of regulations governing boondocking. First and foremost, there’s the California Vehicle Code dealing with how long you can park (not camp, park) alongside highways on the right of way. It’s eight hours. Then there are all the municipal and county exceptions to this statewide rule.  Good boondocking spots are defined by what they are not. Don’t try to boondock in state parks or vista points. They are great day spots, but be out of town by sundown. Stay out of small towns, make sure you are outside the city limits of them before you try to spend the night.

But there are three good night spots and a variety of day spots we move up and down this ten mile section of highway, staying mobile and not aggravating the local constabulary or landowners.  We have stayed a week or so.

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations.

PET TIP OF THE WEEK

Just like we have packing lists for our RV trips, every pet should also have their own pet travel kit.
You need to bring food, treats, a bowl, leash, a rope to keep them confined outside the RV when you stop for the night, plastic bags to pick up their waste, grooming supplies, medication and first-aid, and a list of their health records from your vets, showing vaccinations and any health issues they have.

Be sure to pack a favorite toy or pillow to give your pet a sense of familiarity.

And bring a supply of water from home. Drinking water from an area your pet isn’t used to could result in stomach discomfort. We give Bo bottled water, at home and on the road and have never had a problem.

Your pet's travel-feeding schedule should start with a light meal three to four hours prior to departure, and avoid feeding your pet in a moving vehicle.

We keep all this in a special bag. We call ours the “Bo Bag.”

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Dozers Dental Chews, an all natural and healthy treat your dog will love. Available direct through Amazon

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK – What to do with all those photos you take on your RV trips?

RVers love to take photos and these days, it’s more apt to be with our smartphones. But what do you do with them? How do you keep from running out of space? And what’s the best way to share those great memories? To help us answer those questions we talk with our RV buddies Jim and Chris Guld – better known as the Geeks on Tour.

Chris has just written a great book called Mrs. Geek’s Guide to Google Photos and we chat about why – no matter what platform your smartphone is on Apple or Android – this amazing and totally free app need to be on your device.

Plus RV Tips, suggestions about RVing with pets, traveling tech suggestions, RV News and much, much more!

Jim and Chris Guld are Geeks Who Teach. They’ve both been in the Computer Training and Support industry since the early 80s. Now they live fulltime in a motorhome and tour the country presenting Technology Seminars at RV Rallies, Computer Clubs, and even people’s homes. 

Jim and Chris have the Geeks On Tour website at http://geeksontour.com/

Mrs. Geek’s Guide to Google Photos is available at http://geeksontour.com/google-photos-book/

And their “What does this Button Do?” You Tube videos can be accessed at https://learnbuttons.blogspot.com/

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK:

Three RV News stories for you this week…

  • Heath advisors urging campers to take precautions as study confirms Lyme disease carrying ticks in nine east coast national parks.Read more
  • Company wants to build a marijuana friendly RV park in Oregon.Read more
  • Eighty-one false killer whales breech themselves in Florida everglades and die, mystifying scientists.Read more

This portion of the podcast is brought to you by Alde  the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

Verizon's Steve Van Dinter reports on Verizon Innovative Learning App Challenge

This week I wanted to take a little time to give a tip of the hat to some of the brightest middle and high school students across the nation.

This past fall, Verizon kicked off it’s innovative learning app challenge - calling out to all middle and high school students to form teams and come up with ideas for smartphone apps that could make a positive difference in their communities.

And did students ever answer the call!

All told, more than 1,800 teams from across the country participated with some truly unique ideas.

And recently Best in State winners were announced - one middle and high school team from every state - to receive a $5,000 grant and free tablets for each member of their team.

Now they need your help. Because the team that gets the most votes as fan favorite wins an additional $15,000 for their school, an all expenses paid trip to Orlando to a tech conference and most importantly, the opportunity to work with MIT experts to create their app!

To vote, visit verizon.com/appchallenge. There you’ll see the list of Best in State winners. Find the one you’d like to support and then text in their code to, 22333. 

Voting is open until February 14th and the winner will be announced on Feb 15.

Again that website is verizon.com/appchallenge

Best of luck to all teams in the running!

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide.

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT – Crystal Geyser, Utah

By Tom and Patti Burkett

Winter is here, and as much as we enjoy winter camping, we also are thinking about getting warm.  We don’t think there’s any better way to warm up than in a hot spring.  Sitting in a natural spring on a winter evening, as a light snow falls is about as perfect as it gets.  There are a number of great sites around the country for this, although some of them rarely get snow.  Classic old-time commercial institutions like the ones in Arkansas and North Carolina are at one end of the spectrum, and some of the absolutely solitary spots along US 50 in Utah and in the Rocky Mountains are at the other end.

Although hot springs got us thinking, this report is about another sort of geological feature.  As you drive along I-70 in Utah, it’s easy to put on the playlist and blow through without looking left or right.  If you do, you’ll lose out.  For example, the little town of Green River has several things to recommend it.  If you happen to be there in September, you can spend the weekend at Melon Days.  This classic small town festival celebrates all things green and stripey.  Pancake breakfasts, seed spitting contests for all ages, a 5K run, and a parade are on offer.  Enjoy live music, brush up on your square dancing, or just sit back and watch the softball tournament.

What has this to do with hot springs, you’re wondering?  Well, the most underrated feature of the Green River area is a few miles out of town.  When we visited, it was five miles of driving down badly washboarded rural roads.  At the end we found Crystal Geyser.  Several times a day, water spouts from the ground here along the banks of the Green River, sometimes rising more than a hundred feet in the air. What makes this spot unique, one of only a handful in the world, is that it’s not geothermal.  the eruptions are powered by dissolved carbon dioxide in the groundwater, and the erupting stream is cold.  The water tumbles down to the river, and has left shelves of orange colored travertine.

Amazingly, this wonder sits entirely unremarked on public agency land.  We came in after dark and parked twenty yards from the geyser.  By morning one other camper was sharing the large two-level undeveloped parking area with us.  As the morning wore on, a couple of families arrived in bathing suits, a few fishers ranged themselves along the banks, and a group of canoeists launched nearby.  The geyser burbled off and on, water running down the shelves.  We enjoyed the wildflowers and chatted with the regulars.  We chose to move on before a major blow, but the locals assured us it would happen several times that day.

Green River also offers the John Wesley Powell Museum, with information about his river trips as well as local geology.  Slow down in those long stretches of seemingly barren country.  Look around.  You’ll be glad you did. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elxfvPCYiuQ

http://melon-days.com/schedule/

https://www.visitutah.com/places-to-go/cities-and-towns/green-river/john-wesley-powell-river-museum/

RV CALENDAR 

Three shows this weekend…

Louisville Boat, RV Sport Show
January 25-29
Kentucky Exposition Center 
Louisville , KY

Fort Myers RV Show
January 26-29
Lee Civic Center
Fort Myers, FL

Atlanta Camping & RV Show
January 27-29
Atlanta Exposition Center South
Atlanta, GA

For a complete list of RV shows for the rest of the year, click here.

 

 

 

Direct download: RT124.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 7:25pm EDT

Episode 123: What you need to know to plan an RV trip to Alaska

 

Survey any group of RVers about what’s number one on their bucket list and inevitably, one destination will be at the very top: Alaska, a wilderness land of majestic mountains, spectacular scenery and wildlife and grand adventure.

Every RVer needs to experience Alaska at least once and in this episode of the Roadtreking RV Lifestyle Podcast, we learn from perhaps the top expert when it comes to RVing in Alaska – author and fulltime RVer Ron Jones.

Ron tells us that if you are planning to visit Alaska this year – right now is when you should start planning and he dispels some myths and false notions, replacing it with solid, practical and expert advice on making this long journey. You will not want to miss my interview with Ron, coming up soon.

Also in this episode, RV travel, tech and pet tips, news, your questions and comments and much more.

 

 

Show Notes for Episode #123 Jan. 18 2017 of Roadtreking - The RV Lifestyle Podcast:

 

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

 

This tip comes by email from one of our listeners named Wendy… who came across an inexpensive little gadget that can help with staying clean and showering on camping trips and hikes.

It’s called the Simple Shower and it is a specially designed portable shower that attaches to just about any one or two liter bottle to convert them into a shower.

That’s right: It turns an empty water or soft drink bottle into a makeshift shower.

Here’s how it works:

Simply fill a plastic 1 or 2 liter bottle with warm water, or leave the bottle in the sun to heat up, and attach the Simple Shower device in the open neck of the bottle for a quick and easy shower.

It's ideal for backpacking, canoeing, kayaking, hunting, camping, emergencies, cleaning pets, washing utensils, at the beach, and anywhere else a steady stream flow shower can be used. 

A two liter bottle can hold pretty close to a half gallon of water and the Simple Shower attachment pours it out in a nice stream, not all at once

And if you have a couple of them, you could even wash your hair.

It costs just $12.99 on Amazon.

Thanks, Wendy, for sending me that tip.

And I invite all our listeners to send me your tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Roadtreking.com. Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox.

I love hearing from you!

 

Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by T RadPower Bikes (www.RadPowerBikes.com_… an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes.

 

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK:

 

A listener wants to have her own website to post pictures and tell her story. She wants someone else to build it for her but to teach her how do updates.

Mike suggests several resources and services:

www.blogger.com

http://www.wix.com/

http://www.weebly.com/

http://blogstarting.org/

 

And a reader wants to see an eTrek at an RV show. Mike suggests visiting the biggest one near or to call their local Roadtrek dealer and ask where they will be displaying one.

 

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations.

 

PET TIP OF THE WEEK

 

We all know how important it is not to sit for long periods of time and, on long RV trips, to get up and walk around.

But you know it’s just as important, if not more so, for our dogs. In fact, exercise is a necessity for maintaining a dogs optimal physical and mental well-being. As with people, obesity is becoming a major health problem in today's dogs.

Between 20 and 40 percent of all dogs seen by veterinarians in the United States are considered overweight, and many are clinically obese. Obesity prevents dogs from enjoying many physical activities; it also decreases speed and stamina and makes it more difficult for dogs to deal with heat.

Obesity is also associated with certain medical problems, including arthritic changes in overly burdened joints, increased risk of torn ligaments, back problems, cardiac problems, difficulty breathing, increased surgical risks, skin problems, whelping problems and a possible increase in risk for some cancers.

So, experts say that, like with people, your pets should be able to get out and move around frequently during the day as you travel. About every two hours is the longest you should go without a stretching exercise break – for you and your dog!

Mike and I are big believers in leash-free dogs parks for our Norwegian Elkhound, Bo.

He runs and plays and gets rid if all that excess energy… plus he stays in great shape. Sometimes, we have been known to take him to a park twice a day. A typical visit is a half hour to an hour. Bo loves it and we also enjoy visiting with other pet owners and enjoying the fresh air, especially during long travel days.

As we travel, we use a website called dogfriendly.com to locate those dog parks. They have the best list we’ve found. Just click on the state you’re in and it lists all the nearby parks. Again, the website is dogfriendly.com

 

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Dozers Dental Chews, an all natural and healthy treat your dog will love. Available direct through Amazon 

 

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK Ron Jones, RVing in Alaska

 

Alaska is the number one travel dream for many an RVers… the ultimate bucket list destination. But a lot of RVers make a lot of mistakes, or have a lot of wrong notions about Alaska. For one thing, they don’t do enough planning. And they often miss a lot of things because they didn’t allow enough time.

My guest this week is Ron Jones, who probably knows more about RVing to Alaska than anyone else you can find. He has put on seminars all across North America on RVing to Alaska and he has written a series of books on the topic.

If you plan to head to Alaska in tur RV... listen up!

Ron’s blog – www.aboutrving.com

Ron’s Alaska books - http://www.aboutrving.com/store/

For free travel planning, things to do and maps from the State of Alaska go to www.travelalaska.com

 

The interview of the week is brought to you by http://sunshinestatervs.com/, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country

 

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK:

 

Three RV News stories this week…

 

Zion National Park Road Closes Indefinitely because of Rock Slide

Tampa-area owner of an RV consignment business arrested for defrauding customers

New 750-mile hiking/biking recreational trail planned for New York

This portion of the podcast is brought to you by Alde  the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV

 

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

Verizon's Steve Van Dinter reports on Prepping for Severe Weather

 

This past week’s ice storm wreaked havoc across much of the central United States leaving accidents and power outages in its wake.

 

Preparation isn’t something a lot of us feel we have time for but it’s moments like these that it truly pays off.

 

For instance, did you know that Verizon’s network is built with redundancies and battery backups to ensure you can stay connected? Everything from the individual cell towers to the switching centers that route all your calls, text and data.

 

You, too, can take steps to be prepared for any type of severe weather.

 

Store phones, tablets, batteries, chargers and other equipment in a dry, accessible location. Zip-lock storage bags will do the trick or look into waterproof phones, cases or other protective accessories.

 

Keep Your phone and tablets fully charged – in case local power is lost – well before warnings are issued.

 

Have additional batteries and car-chargers available for back-up power. A nice variety, including solar-powered devices, make it easy to stay powered up.

 

Maintain a list of emergency numbers – police and fire agencies; power and insurance companies; family, friends and co-workers; etc. – and program them into your phone before an emergency arises.

 

Use your tablet to photograph and catalogue your valuables and other household belongings for possible insurance claims.

 

Choose from hundreds of free weather-, news- and safety-related apps and services for smartphones and tablets - in particular I like the American Red Cross app, Weather Underground, and NOAA Now.

 

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide.

 

RV CALENDAR

 

Here’s the schedule of RV shows around the country for this weekend…

Florida RV SuperShow
January 18-22
Florida State Fairgrounds
Tampa, FL

Inland Northwest RV Show
January 19-22
Spokane County Fair & Expo Center
Spokane, WA

Tacoma RV Show
January 19-22
Tacoma Dome
Tacoma, WA

Austin Boat & Travel Trailer Show
January 19-22
Austin Convention Center
Austin, TX

Toronto RV Show & Sale
January 19-22
Toronto Congress Centre
Toronto, ON, Canada

Northeast RV and Camping Show
January 20-22
CT Convention Center
Hartford, CT

Chattanooga RV Show
January 20-22
Chattanooga Convention Center
Chattanooga, TN

New Jersey RV & Camping Show 
January 20-22
New Jersey Convention Center
Edison, NJ

For a complete list of RV shows this weekend and for the rest of the year, click here.

 

Direct download: RT123.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 4:46pm EDT

Episode 122 - What you need to know before buying a used RV

It’s RV shopping season and for a lot of shoppers, finding used RVs can be a daunting experience, especially for the high demand Class B campervan style motorhomes. But once you locate one, how do you make sure you are getting a good deal? What are the things that need to be carefully checked out? What red flag warning signs should you look for? That’s what we talk about this week in our interview of the week.

Plus your RV questions, RV tips involving travel, technology and your pets, news of the week and a great off the beaten path report all coming up in this episode of The RV Lifestyle Podcast.

Complete shownotes for Episode 122 of the Roadtreking RV Lifestyle Podcast

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

This is the time of year when people are shopping and buying their RVs. That means they are also buying the things they need for that RV, like pots and pans and plates and silverware.

When I meet new RVers, one of the first questions I usually get is how much of all that do need to bring and store in the RV?

The answer is not as much as you may think.

How much entertaining do you plan to do? By that, I mean how often will you have people in your RV for dinner or lunch?

Mike and I travel with four placesettings. That’s it. Just four. Same with glasses and cutlery. By the way, we often of paper plates and disposable cups, especially on winter campouts. Why make more work and spend all your time washing dishes?

As far as pots and pans goes. That depends on your cooking style and how much food preparation you plan to do. We grill out as much as possible. All I have in our RV is a fry pan and a sauce pan. Now if you love Italian cooking, you’ll need something for pasta. You may want to steam your veggies and will need something for that. But our style is fast and easy. We prepare and freeze meals in advance that just need to be thawed.

Or, as I said, we cook out on a grill.

Again, we all have different RVing styles. Ours is keep it simple…less is always best and do whatever we can to make cleanup as easy as possible. After all, RVing is supposed to be a break from the routine.

How about you?

I’m interested in hearing about your RV style and tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Roadtreking.com. Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox.

I love hearing from you!

Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by T RadPower Bikes (www.RadPowerBikes.com_… an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes.

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK:

Terri asks about getting a better cellular signal inside her RV. Mike suggests a cellphone booster. The one Mike uses is the the  Professional Grade weBoost Drive 4G-X + RV Trucker Essentials Kit – 470510-RV. It comes with a big external antenna. It is most powerful in-vehicle booster certified in the US and Canada and enhances 4G LTE, as well as 3G and 2G network signals, up to 32x. That is probably overkill for most RVers at more than $500. Wilson makes much more affordable ones for single devices starting at around $100.

Phil asks Mike and Jen about the gravity chair/loungers they take with them in their Roadtrek CS Adventurous XL. The brand we use is the Best Choice brand. They are available on Amazon at $64.99 for a set of two. When we bought them we found them at a Kmart in Missouri on sale for about the same price.

And listener Debbie reacts to last week’s travel suggestion for fans of the Sheriff Longmire novels and TV show and plans for Longmire Days in Wyoming this summer. The dates haven’t been set yet but should be in June or early July.

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations.

PET TIP OF THE WEEK

When you travel with pets, they need to be protected just as you are. That means you really don’t want them roaming around inside the RV while you are underway.

Pet safety experts recommend a soft protective crate. The crate should be large enough for your pet to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in.

Make sure you secure your pet’s crate so it will not slide or shift in the event of an abrupt stop.

We saw a great one used by Roadtreker Colleen Schneider… whose lab Sage rides in the Precision Pet Soft Sided Crate. They come in different sizes and can handle pets up to 90 pounds.

Colleen says Sage loves the crate and gets excited whenever they get it out. They use it only wjhen traveling in their RV and it fits behind the driver and passenger seats of their Roadtrek CS Adventurous XL, facing the sliding door. The crate has openings on three sides and besides being a safe place for Sage to be while driving, it keeps that pesky dog hair in one place.

Now if you decide to forgo the crate, we’ve seen others who keep their pets in the back seat in a harness attached to a seat buckle. We found a whole bunch of pet safety harnesses with seat belt latches on Amazon that are made just for such purposes. We’ll put a link with the shownotes for this episode at Roadtreking.com forward slash 122.

That’s this week’s traveling with pets tip. If you have one to share, use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Roadtreking.com to record a message to us.

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Dozers Dental Chews, an all natural and healthy treat your dog will love. Available direct through Amazon 

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK

It’s RV shopping season… For a lot of shoppers, finding used RVs can be a daunting experience, especially for the high demand Class B campervan style motorhomes. But once you locate one, how do you make sure you are getting a good deal? What are the things that need to be carefully checked out? What red flag warning signs should you look for? That’s what we talk about this week in our interview of the week.

Our guest is Nick Schmidt of Sunshine State RV. Jennifer Bo and I traveled to Gainesville, Florida this week to meet with Nick, who carries one of the largest inventories of used Class B RVs in North America.

Nick shared with us the things buyers need to know when selecting a previously owned RV, whether they buy from a dealer or a private individual.

Nick mentions getting an inspection before buying a used RV.

Here are some organizations that do just that:

http://lemonsquad.com/used-car-inspections/rv

https://rvinspection.com/

https://nrvia.org/locate/

http://www.accuratervinspection.com/

The interview of the week is brought to you by http://sunshinestatervs.com/, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK:

Two stories in the RV news this week, both related to exotic animals…

  • Trail camera in southern Arizona's Huachuca Mountains confirms new wild jaguar sighting.Read more
  • ​​​​​​​Bicyclist captures video of Burmese python and alligator fighting just off the trail at Big Cypress National Preserve in southern Florida.Read more

This portion of the podcast is brought to you by Alde  the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

Verizon's Steve Van Dinter reports - Protecting your phone from frigid temps

Recent blasts of bitter cold and snow are reminding all of us that winter isn’t leaving any time soon. And while we have hats and gloves to keep our bodies warm, did you know your smartphone needs a little extra love when it’s cold as well?

In fact, the farther the temperature drops below freezing the more you need to be concerned about it.

You may have noticed your phone taking a little longer when it’s cold out, or your battery doesn’t seem to last quite as long. That’s not an illusion.

For best results, never leave your phone in a car overnight if temperatures are plummeting. And if you do happen to leave your device outside for a long period of time and can afford to wait before using it, it’s a good idea to let it warm up to room temperature before you turn it on and start using it. That will maximize your battery life.

If you happen to be outside in the cold for a long time and still need to use your phone you may want to invest in an insulated phone case. Or move your phone to an inside pocket of your coat where it will absorb the most body heat.

Finally if you’re traveling along treacherous roads, make sure you are packing a car charger or bringing along an extra power pack. This could be a lifesaver if you were to be stuck on the side of the road.

With this week’s traveling technology tip, I’m Steve Van Dinter from Verizon.

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide. 

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT -  

By Tom and Patti Burkett

Well, we really enjoyed hearing everyone’s 2017 travel plans last week, and the mention of Kentucky’s moonbow.  This amazing phenomenon is most impressive on a full moon night in the winter.  As you can imagine, getting a clear night on the full moon, in Kentucky, in the winter is quite a crap shoot, so seeing it is a real treat!  If you go, take a chair and arrive early.  Cumberland State Resort Park is a bit of a drive off interstate 75.  If you’re making the trip, stop in Corbin at Harlan Sanders’ original restaurant to see the birthplace of Kentucky Fried Chicken. Anyway, hearing about the moonbow reminded us of another stellar Kentucky adventure.  We’ve often spent time at the Big South Fork on the border between Kentucky and Tennessee.  The Green River, which runs through the park, is great for swimming, fishing, and paddling.  Theres a restored mining settlement, an excellent interactive historical display, and an annual festival that celebrates mountain culture with first-rate music and storytelling.  You can also climb around on a huge old coal tipple and see how it worked.Not too far away from the Big South Fork is Pickett State Park and Forest.  Pickett is tranquil and quiet, and it’s home to Hazard Cave.  In the late spring and early summer, you can take a hike to the cave at dusk, arriving at dark, and step inside to see some amazing animals.  The cave seems to sparkle with the stars of a night sky thanks to thousands of battle larvae commonly called glow worms.  Unlike stars and fireflies, they don’t flash, but glow steadily.  Call the park for updates near the time.  There are ranger-led walks, but if your schedule doesn’t match you can also go on your own.  Be sure to have a flashlight or headlamp for the walk back along the trail in the dark.Glow worms are found in only a handful of places around the world.  Many folks spend lots of money to visit the famous Waitomo Glowworm caves in New Zealand.  While the caves in Kentucky aren’t quite as spectacular, they’re a lot easier to get to, and you can camp within walking distance.  Kentucky cave worms are one of several phenomena that only occur at a certain time of the year, so we keep a travel calendar with such events scheduled to recur annually.  When we’re planning a trip, we consult the calendar and try to make our route match one or more of the time-limited attractions.  Patti and I begin our new year travels next weekend, and we’ll be looking for you somewhere, out there, off the beaten path.

http://tnstateparks.com/parks/about/pickett

http://www.2geton.net/martin/moonbow/moonbowschedule.html

http://www.roadsideamerica.com/tip/4156 

RV CALENDAR

For a complete list of RV shows this weekend and for the rest of the year, click here. 

Chicago Boat, RV & Strictly Sail Show
January 11-15
McCormick Place 
Chicago, IL

Grand Rapids Camper, Travel & RV Show
January 12-15
DeVos Place
Grand Rapids, MI

Mid-America RV Show
January 12-15
Bartle Hall 
Kansas City, MO

56th Annual RV & Campgrounds Show
January 13-15
Allentown Fairgrounds
Allentown, PA

Greater Chicago RV Show
January 13-15
Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center
Schaumburg, IL

Valley RV & Camping Show
January 13-15
Century Center
South Bend, IN

Washington RV Show
January 13-15
Dulles Expo Center
Chantilly, VA 

Boston RV & Camping Expo
January 13-16
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center
Boston, MA

 

Direct download: RT122.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 3:42pm EDT

Episode 121: Must visit ideas for Your 2017 RV Travel Bucket List

Episode 121: Must visit ideas for Your 2017 RV Travel Bucket List

It’s a New Year and RVers have made their bucket lists and are ready to take on 2017. And in this episode of the podcast. We hear from lots of our fellow RV travelers who share what’s on their bucket list for this year. And in the process, they offer all of us plenty of ideas for places and events that wemay not have been aware of. 

Plus tech tips, your questions and much more. 

Shownotes for Episode 121 of the Roadtreking RV Lifestyle Podcast

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

There are lots of ways to use a Roadtrek besides camping and boondocking. 

You can driveway camp at the homes of friends and relatives, use it to stay in the parking lot of a hospital, use it as a moving van or as a second vehicle for errands around town.

Meanwhile…

We have follow up report from Steve Dodd, a Roadtreker we met and interviewed last summer in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Steve shares a most unusual second use for his Roadtrek…. As Santa’s delivery van. He gives us this update on how it worked out for him this past Christmastime.

Be sure to send me your tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Roadtreking.com. Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile device to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox.

I love hearing from you!

Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by RadPower Bikes (www.RadPowerBikes.com)  an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes.

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK: 

A listener named Donna put her RV under cover and in storage. When she checked it the other day, the carbon monoxide alarm was chirping. She wonders what’s wrong…

 

Carbon monoxide detectors and alarms are designed to alert you to unsafe levels of carbon monoxide.  They do this by making noise and flashing lights.  However, they also make noise and flash lights under other conditions.  The noise that they make has been described as beeping, chirping, and even squeaking.  Most detectors will make two sounds: a “beep” and a much shorter “chirp”.  The beeping noise is used to alert you to unsafe CO levels.  It is usually in the form of 4 beeps, a pause, then 4 more beeps.  This pattern is repeated continuously until the CO level drops or until you press the “mute” button. 

On the other hand, the chirping sound is used to report some problem with the detector.  It is not as critical as the beeping alarm, but it should be addressed.  The chirping is telling you that the detector may not be functioning or may fail soon. It may be reporting a low battery, an internal error, a unit malfunction, or the end of the internal sensors useful life. 

If you do not have it plugged in, your batteries will drain down.  

If the CO detector and/or the smoke alarms notice low batteries, they will beep to warn you the batteries are low.  That is most likely what is happening.

My gut feeling is that your C0 detector is probably fine; but your batteries might need looking at and or replacing if they been drained down too often.

 

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest

 

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK – Bucket Lists for 2017

 

Jennifer and I have a bunch of trips on our 2017 bucket list, too. We’ve shared many on the blog (see http://roadtreking.com/2017-schedule-roadtreking-gatherings/).

 

Mike and Jen’s big trips include:

 

  • January 20-22:  January Freezeout, Tahquamenon State Park, Michigan

 

  • February 24-27, Pogo’s Smokin’ on the Bayou Mardi Gras Gathering, Ocean Springs, MS

 ·      June 19-23: Roadtreking’s Photo Safari, Glacier National Park (Chewing Blackbones Campground)

- August 18-22: Pacific Northwest Gettogether and Solar Eclipse, John Day, OR 

-  September 14-18: Blues and BBQ, Tupelo, Mississippi – Trace State Park

- October 2-6:  Fall Foliage Tour, Shawangunks, NY

Listen to the podcast as numerous listeners share what’s on their bucket lists for 2017.

This portion of the podcast is brought to you by http://sunshinestatervs.com/, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country

Also…

by Alde… the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

Verizon's Steve Van Dinter reports on new traveling tech gadgets for 2017

Welcome to 2017! I hope you and your listeners had a relaxing and enjoyable holiday season.

And with the start of the new year, I thought it would be appropriate to talk about some new tech that can get you off on the right foot.

First up…the Misfit Ray Fitness and Sleep Monitor. It looks like a sleek piece of jewelry for men or women, but it’s really packing a whole lot of smarts inside. In fact, while you’ll feel good having it on your wrist, it’s actually keeping track of your movements throughout the day, notifying you when you get a call or text, allowing you to take selfies and even wakes you in the morning at the time when you’re in the lightest sleep! And its 6 months battery life – yes one half of a year – means you never have to think about plugging it in. And all its info is shared via an app on your phone! Again that’s the Misfit Ray.

Next, if you struggle with getting pictures and other files onto and off of your Android device, then have I got the gadget for you! It’s the Ultra Dual Drive USB Flash Drive – long name I know, but what it does is simple. On one side you have a traditional USB connector that plugs into your computer, on the other is a USB type C connector that plugs into any phone with a USB C port. Plug it into your phone and easily transfer files to and from the flash drive. Then plug into your computer and easily transfer there as well. It doesn’t get much easier than that! 

And finally if you ever stop to take a hike on any of your roadtreks, or maybe your kids like to listen to music on their Bluetooth headphones while on a cross country drive, then the Mophie Power Capsule would be a great addition to your trip. Not only does it act as a protective case for your headphones, it also has a built in battery and will charge your Bluetooth headphones up to 8 times over! Again that’s called the Mophie Power Capsule.

For more information on any of these, head on over to VerizonWireless.com. With this week’s traveling technology tip, I’m Steve Van Dinter from Verizon.

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide.

 

Direct download: RT121.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 4:16pm EDT

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