The RV Podcast

RT168 The Big Issues Facing the RV Industry for 2018

 

This episode of the podcast is coming to you direct from the 2017 RV Industry Trade Show in Louisville, KY. Taking questions and comments received over the past week from our Roadtreking.com blog readers, out Roadtreking Facebook Group and Page and our RV lifestyle Channel on YouTube, we’ve interviewed top leaders in the RV industry and identified the three biggest issues this booming industry needs to address as 2018 approaches. You’ll hear their responses in this podcast, plus much more.

 

Show Notes for Episode #168 Nov. 29, 2017 of Roadtreking - The RV Podcast:

 

WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK

 

Jennifer and I have been in Louisville all week and we are actually doing this episode right from the show floor.

  • This show is not open to the public, just RV manufacturers, RV dealers, service techs and parts suppliers. Plus the RV media, of course
  • 2 million square feet of exhibitor space
  • Hundreds of new RVs for 2018
  • Seminars, accessory dealers, parts dealers and the elite of the industry.

 

We are moving from our standard podcast format to instead identify the three major issues and bring on industry experts to help shed their insights on what it means.

 

The three issues are:

  1. With a million new RVers this year, and another million expected in 2018, where will they take their RVs? Campground development is not keeping space with RV sales. What can RVers do? We’ll try to put it into perspective
  2. Our audience identifies RV service as another channeling issue. RV repairs are often hard to get done. Sometime, it takes weeks to get an appointment and when you’re out of town and need help, what can an RV owner do? What’s the industry’s effort to add more service personnel.
  3. RV quality is the third issue our audience raised. With manufacturers rolling our new RVs as fast as they can, many of our readers and viewers think quality has taken a backseat. What is the industry doing to insure the quality of the new RVs they are building in record numbers?

 

We’ll talk about these, in depth.

 

This portion of the Podcast is brought to you by Campers Inn, the RVer’s trusted resource for over 50 years, the nation’s largest family-operated RV dealership with 16 locations and growing

 

 

ISSUE #1 – With so many RVers on the road, where will they stay?

 

We discuss this with industry leaders

 

 

 

 This part of the podcast is brought to you by RadPower Bikes ,an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping  

 

Issue #2 – The need for more service techs to repair and maintain RVs

 

We discuss this with industry leaders:

 

  • Marl Polk runs com, a website devoted to teaching RVers how to do it themselves. He shares his thoughts.

 

  • Bob Zagami is executive director of the New England RV Dealers Association. He says the problem is a serious problem and has helped pioneer some innovate ways for the industry to solve it.

 

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV  Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’ RVs with locations St. Louis, Missouri; Las Vegas, Nevada; Kalispell, Montana and now… Colorado Springs, Colorado..

 

Issue #3: RV quality

 

Talking about this issue is:

 

  • Walter Cannon is a well-respected leader in the RV industry, specializing in safety and technical issues. He is the director of com and has extensive experience as a fulltimer. He puts the issue into perspective

 

 

 

This part of the podcast is brought to you by SunshinestateRVs.com, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country

 

 

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

By Steve Van Dinter

 Verizon Wireless

 

With Thanksgiving now behind us, we’re solidly locked into the holiday season. So do you know what you’re getting for those on your list this year?

Over the next few weeks I’ll bring you and your listeners some high tech options...starting this week with gifts under $100.

First up...the Google Home Mini. When it comes to adding smarts to your home, look no further than this doughnut sized device. Stick it in the kitchen, living room, bedroom or all three and when connected to wifi it’ll answer all of your burning questions, from what’s the weather like, to how to cook a turkey, to playing your favorite holiday songs. And all of that happens simply by saying, “Ok, Google.”

Next...sometimes your standard white lighting just won’t cut it. And that’s where the Philips Hue White Starter Kit comes in. These LED lights have their own built in wifi chip. And when connected to your home network, you can turn them on and off, automate them and even change the color temperature from cool daylight to warm relaxing light all through an app. These lights can also be connected to your Google Home device allowing you truly hands free control!

And finally the Chromecast Ultra - this is the dongle that truly does it all! Plug it into any TV or monitor. And using your smartphone, tablet or laptop, you can cast YouTube videos, Spotify, Netflix and other content to the display with ease. Now you can bask in the warm glow by simply casting a YouTube fireplace video onto your TV

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

If you’re headed to or from Houston, or New Orleans, or Pensacola along the gulf coast, it’s easy to get on I-10 and zip through the bayou country.  If you do, you’ll be missing out on some entertaining and unexpected attractions.  After crossing on the Galveston-Port Bolivar ferry at sunset, we drove on a couple of hours to Nibletts’s Bluff outside Vinton, Louisiana.  As we settled into our inexpensive full hookup campsite at this county park, we heard banjos and fiddles.  We’d arrived at the end of a five-day bluegrass jam that’s held here annually.  The music was pleasant, and the showers had plenty of hot water.  We walked out on a long fishing boardwalk that wound over the bayou about a foot above the water, but turned around when we saw a sign that warned ‘BE AWARE.  ALLIGATORS CAN JUMP.’
    Not too far down the road was the Gator Chateau.  This large roadside park is operated by the oil and gas industry association, and has a few exhibits explaining the history and process of mineral extraction along the Gulf coast.  But that’s not the real attraction.  A small building along the park drive offers the opportunity for you to hold an alligator.  When we stopped in, a very knowledgeable and enthusiastic young woman explained the do’s and don’ts before handing over a two foot gator to Patti.  Pools nearby held more of the reptiles, large and small.  
    Next door in a small gift shop, we told the clerk we were planning too stop at a nearby shop for some boudin.  We’d seen it advertised a number of places along our way.  “Well,” she said, “y’all can do that.  It’s pretty commercial.  If you want the real thing, you’d best head over to Billy’s, though, down at Scott”   Down the road it was then, to Scott, and at about ten in the morning, we stood in line for a good fifteen minutes for our turn at the counter.  Boudin is a sausage, particular to Cajun country, and it’s usually served with cracklings, which are deep fried bits of pig intestine.  We shared a mid-morning boudin ball and a small bag of cracklings as we drove on to the Atchafalaya Visitor Center.
    The Atchafalaya is the largest wetland in the United States.  Made up of bogs, cypress swamps, and marshes, it’s a nursery for hundreds of species and home to many of the Cajun folk of this region.  Acadians, French loyalists during the French and Indian War, were forced out of the Canadian Maritimes when the war ended in 1765, and settled here along the Gulf before the Revolutionary War.  Their unique music and cuisine have become part of our wider US culture over the past century.  The visitor center houses excellent displays about wildlife and ecology and offers an informative film.  Best, though, is the animatronic swamp critter band that looks like an escaped exhibit from Disney World.
    This coastline was devastated by hurricane Katrina, and if you drive along the coast itself, you’ll see countless lots for sale, and beautiful seaside mansions that can be yours for practically a song.  Remember, though, that they are uninsurable.  As you pass through Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi, stop and see the angel tree.  During the hurricane, three humans and a Scottish terrier clung to this tree and were able to survive the storm surge.  The tree died from salt poisoning after the storm, but one of the survivors commissioned a sculptor to turn it into a depiction of angels.  There are many art trees along the coast, but this one is especially symbolic.
    From Galveston, Texas to the Gulf Islands National Seashore every mile of coastline and every interstate exit offers unexpected surprises that will play hob with the plans you made over breakfast.  Give in, and look for us, Patti and Tom Burkett, somewhere among the zydeco and etouffé, off the beaten path.

RESOURCES

http://www.niblettsbluffpark.com/

http://www.jeffdavis.org/tourism/attractions/gator-chateau.html

http://www.billysboudin.com/

http://www.atchafalaya.org/

 

This part of the podcast is sponsored by Steinbring Motorcoach, Roadtrek’s newest dealer and a third generation family business in Minnesota’s beautiful Chain of Lakes region built on quality motorhomes and excellent pricing and service.

 

Direct download: RT168.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 9:05pm EDT

Episode 167: How to Find the Ultimate Camping Site in 2018

Before you start making your RV travel plans for the next camping season, you’ll want to listen to this week’s interview about a great resource for finding the perfect spot in public campgrounds. From state and out of the way municipal spots to outstanding boondocking campsites in state and national forests or other wilderness areas, our guest Ted Houghton has a resource that will truly help you find the ultimate camping spot in 2018. That’s coming up in our interview of the week in this episode.

Also this week, great RV tips, travel ideas, news affecting RVs and, of course, your comments and questions.

Show Notes for Episode #167 Nov. 22, 2017 of Roadtreking - The RV Podcast:

WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK

We share our Thanksgiving plans and talk about what parts of the RV Lifestyle we live that we are most thankful for over the past year. There are free entry days on Black Friday in state parks in several states.  Indiana, Minnesota, Oregon, New York, Arizona, Washington, California, Missouri, Michigan… here’s a link to the ones we’ve heard about https://gearjunkie.com/get-outside-black-friday-freebies-state-parks

We update Bo’s progress after six weeks of obedience training. So far…so good!

We talk about the big Recreation Vehicle Industry Association Trade Show coming up next week in Louisville and our plans to ask the questions and find the info our readers, listeners and YouTube viewers want us to dig out for them from the show. 

This portion of the Podcast is brought to you by Campers Inn, the RVer’s trusted resource for over 50 years, the nation’s largest family-operated RV dealership with 19 locations and growing

 JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

We received a great tip from a listener named Anne who emailed us two tips this week.

The first tip has to do with wet towels and where to hang them.

What Anne did was to purchase one of those tension bars that people use for closet organizers or even sometimes bathroom shower curtains. Ann set hers up across the back of the bathroom in the RV.

She says she set it about an inch from the wall and that it is perfect for hanging those wet towels. They dry perfectly, she says…and out of the way.

A second tip involves something available in various places like Bed, Bath and Beyond, Walmart and even some of those dollar stores. What she did was buy sock dividers. They’re normally used to keep socks neat in a drawer. But Ann uses them in her RV kitchen cabinet to keep drinking and wine glasses from falling over. Now, she says, everything arrives intact.

Thanks Anne for sharing those great tips

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 ,an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping   

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK

Sue has a comment on how hard to is to find a service tech for an RV and wants to know what can be done about it. We comment.

Sandra wants to know about where to find resources about boondocking in Canada. We refer her to boondockerswelcome.com, which has nearly 300 spots listed on their handy membership site. Also ultimatecampgrounds.com. We interview the man behind that site in a few minutes but he lists more than 4,000 great spots to camp in Canada, many of them perfect for boondockers. He even has an app devoted just to Canadian public campgrounds.  We also like and are a member ourselves of HarvestHosts.com. They have more than 570 farms and wineries where you can camp for free in the U,S. and Canada. Also in Ontario, there’s mostly free camping on Crown land and conservation reserves, free to Canadian citizens for up to21 days – see https://www.ontario.ca/page/camping-crown-land

 

Email

First of all, let me tell you how much I enjoy your Roadtreking Newsletter.  I have learned a lot of tips from the two of you.  Thank you for sharing your experiences.  
My wife, Eileen, and I are the proud owners of a new RoadTrek Agile.  We took delivery of her in early October.  Although I have driven her around town and on two overnight outings, our first real road trip will be in mid-January when we will take off to Florida for several weeks or more.   Lake Superior and beyond. 
We live in the Twin City area of Minnesota.  I anticipate it will take us three days to drive out of the freeze belt when we leave on our trip in January (we tend to only want to drive for about 6 hours/day).  When I purchased the Agile, I had the dealer install heat pads on the bottom of the potable water tank, the grey water tank, and the black water tank.  I can turn those on until we get out of the cold weather to keep the contents of the tanks from freezing.  However, the water lines themselves are not insulated.  Is there a way to insulate them? Do I need to worry about the pipes freezing during the day as we drive down the road and at night when we are stopped?  The unit is currently winterized.  Would I be wise to wait until we are out of the freeze belt before I de-winterize it and fill the water tanks?  Likewise, do I want to winterize it again before I re-enter the freeze belt on our return trip?
We answer… recommending he stay winterized until it gets warm and then re-winterize when its time to return home

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV  Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’ RVs with locations St. Louis, Missouri; Las Vegas, Nevada; Kalispell, Montana and now… Colorado Springs, Colorado..

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK

Our guest today is Ted Houghton, who has created a website that we believe is the most comprehensive and accurate resource you will find that lists public campgrounds of all types, in Canada and the US.

Ted has a great resource for finding the perfect spot in public campgrounds.

From state parks and out of the way municipal spots to outstanding boondocking campsites in state and national forests or other wilderness areas, Ted can truly help you find the ultimate camping spot in 2018.

His website is ultimatecampgrounds.com

Apps are available for all major platforms.

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

At Sunshine State RV’s you’ll find the largest selection of some of the rarest Class B RVs in the United States of America. If you are looking for a Class B RV, you need to make a trip to Sunny Florida. Our RVs range from 1990 to our current year and everything in between. They also carry the most popular brands like Roadtrek, Pleasure Way, Winnebago, Leisure Travel, and more. You will not find a wider selection anywhere else. 

Every RV they sell has been through a very thorough 172-point inspection in which the ensure that all the mechanical and manual systems are in top condition. Every RV is road tested to make sure it runs and drives the way that it should. They go over the interior components just as entirely as the outside, and every component is turned on and tested to make sure it works. All of their used RVs are thoroughly cleaned and detailed inside and out, and they even check the roof for cracks and replace any silicone caulking.  

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

By Steve Van Dinter

 Verizon Wireless

This year I want you and your listeners to own the holiday season. And with a little planning along with the following apps, you’ll be well on your way to doing just that!

First up...gift giving. It can be a pain to think up gift ideas or to remember what you got your special someone especially if you’ve been buying over the course of the year. That’s why I love the Gift Planner app for iOS and Christmas Gift List app for Android. Both of these free apps let you set a budget and stick to it. As you buy gifts just note who they’re for and the price in the app and you’ll see how much is left to spend. Easy as that!

Next up...my favorite part...saving money!

I’ve got a couple of great websites that also have free Android and iOS apps.

On the top of that list for me is DealNews.com. This site is great for gift ideation as you see what’s currently on sale in all sorts of categories from electronics to health and beauty. It’s a great way to get some ideas especially for the person that has everything. Be careful though as the deals are so tempting you may walk away with something for yourself as well!

And when you know what you want or where you plan to shop, I’ve got one more site for you to check out - RetailMeNot.com. Let’s say you want to pick something up at the Gap, for instance. Just go to the site and type in Gap - you just might be surprised to find coupon codes that will save you 10% or more on your purchase. It’s not going to have something for you every time but definitely worth checking out before you press the buy button.

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 -  Bronner’s in Frankenmuth

Bronner’s is America’s Christmas store. You’ve probably seen the billboards urging you to visit them all across the country. They are located in Frankenmuth Michigan, about an hour and a half north of Detroit.

The store is called America’s Christmas Wonderland and as soon as you walk inside, the sights and sounds and spirit of Christmas will surround and overwhelm you.

The store is huge – the size of one and a half football fields. They have over 50,000 gift items, trims and decorations.

It is the largest Christmas store in America, first opened in 1945.

And it's crowded, especially at this time of the year. Over the three-day Black Friday weekend, 50,000 people will have shopped at Bronner's.

Bronner's and Frankenmuth make for a great RV trip. There are two fully equipped campgrounds within spitting distance of the store. They are, alas, closed this time of the year. But there are lots of RV spaces in the Bronner’s parking lot, although no overnight stays are allowed. The store is open every day of the year except Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's Day and Easter Sunday.
A few years ago, we drove our RV up to Bronners and had it decorated in what turned out to be a really fun story. Here’s a link to it on our RV Lifestyle Channel on YouTube - https://youtu.be/6-O_EOb8XAY

 

This part of the podcast is sponsored by Steinbring Motorcoach, Roadtrek’s newest dealer and a third generation family business in Minnesota’s beautiful Chain of Lakes region built on quality motorhomes and excellent pricing and service.

 

Direct download: RT167.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 6:06pm EDT

Episode 166: Camping’s Dirty Little Secret

We have a jam-packed show for you this week. First off, we’ll tackle the dirty little secret of the RV industry. Yes, they are indeed selling lots and lots of new RVs. Setting sales records seemingly every month. But what they don’t tell you is that you’re going to have a very difficult time finding a place to camp in that RV because we’re not building campgrounds fast enough to keep up with all those new RVers. We’ll tackle this issue in our question of the week segment coming up in a couple of minutes.

Also…

We RVers love our dogs. Many in fact, cite traveling with a dog as one of the chief reasons they even have an RV! But here’s the deal: Dogs are….well, dogs. Not people. And too many of us do a disservice to our pets by treating them as if they were human.  In this week’s podcast, we get some great advice from a professional dog trainer about traveling with our dogs and making the experience enjoyable for our pets as well as ourselves.

Plus lots of audience comments, questions, tips and more all coming up in this episode of The RV Podcast.

 

Show Notes for Episode #166 Nov. 15, 2017 of Roadtreking - The RV Podcast:

WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK

Bo is back – You can see the reunion at https://youtu.be/mCEuuy71E28  We share how his training went and what it’s like having a Smart Dog.

We are at our sticks and bricks home in Michigan for the next couple weeks. We’ll send Thanksgiving here and then hit the road again, traveling to Louisville for the annual Recreation Vehicle Industry Association annual Trade Show.

Our 2018 Travel Schedule is slowly coming together. Many of or destinations will be anchored around one of the many Roadtreking gatherings we will be attending across the country. You can see a full list of those gatherings at http://roadtreking.com/2018-calendar/

This portion of the Podcast is brought to you by Campers Inn, the RVer’s trusted resource for over 50 years, the nation’s largest family-operated RV dealership with 19 locations and growing

 JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK - Stopping those weird noises from your RV heater

There are a lot of moving parts in our RVs. And we’re not talking just about the engine We’re talking about the appliances and the RV accessories that we use on every trip…. Things like the heater.

Sure, there’s usually a manual that comes with the gadget. But owner’s manuals don’t necessarily cover everything.

We got a great tip this week from a listener named Bob whose,  Roadtrek CS Adventurous XL uses the Alde heating system. Bob’s heater made some weird noises and he shares with us how he fixed it in this week’s Tip of the Week…

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 ,an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping  

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK

Listener John noticed the big boom in RV sales but is worried that with all those new campers out there, where will they go? Finding an open campsite without making a reservation long in advance grows more difficult each day. He asks for Mike and Jennifer’s thoughts on the issue. We’re more than willing to weigh in on this issue, which is really the dirty little secret of the RV industry.

Via email:
My husband and I bought a 2003 190 Roadtrek with 210,000 miles on it. It currently has 4 captain seats and I'm wondering if it's possible to put a twin bed where the seat behind the driver is. Also, can I expect this 3500 engine to go 300,000 if it's well care for? I know there are no guarantees. Thanks. Debra

I love following your Roadtreking podcast and hearing about your adventures together. I read that you are going to be at your 'sticks and bricks' home through Thanksgiving, then you are leaving Michigan. Do you plan and follow an annual travel calendar, with some months set aside to be on the road, and other stay at home months? My wife and I are considering retiring to a state like Michigan, and don't think we'd want to spend the whole winter there, but were wondering what would be the best months to be home, and to be RVing. Thanks, and Happy Roadtreking Travels! Carlos

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.

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK  - Lea DiBella, Smart Dog LLC

Lea DiBella is the owner and head trainer at Smart Dog LLC, the Metamora, Michigan – based company that we choose to have Bo trained at. For six weeks, Bo stayed with Lea and was trained to obey

16 basic commands. Now that he’s back with us, we are thrilled at the changes in his behavior. He’s still the fin-loving, friendly and enthusiastic dog we had before, but now he is obedient, doesn’t pull on the leash, comes the first time he’s called, every time.. and much more.

But I wanted to have Lea on the program this week not to talk so much about the training but about the way we treat our canine companions. Too many of us, and I’m talking about a lot of RVers here, treat our dogs as if they were human.

They are not. They’re dogs. A different species. And we do harm to them when we treat them as if they are human, no matter even if the motivation is love on our part.

If you think that means you can’t still shower them with affection, even spoil them a bit, you’ll learn from Lea that…you still can. I think you’ll enjoy her insights and her tips for traveling with our pets.

See how Lea trained Bo in this video I shot the day she brought him back to us as a trained “Smart Dog.” https://youtu.be/mCEuuy71E28

You can reach Lea through her website at https://www.smartdogllc.com/

Follow her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Smartdogllc/

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

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

By Steve Van Dinter

Verizon Wireless

With the holiday stress not yet upon us, now’s the time to start pulling together those great gift ideas for you and your loved ones.

And I’ve got one to add on to your list this year - Google Pixel Buds.

These are bluetooth wireless headphones that provide amazing sound and one touch control of your music along with access to your Google Assistant.

That’s right, thanks to its built in microphone, when a question pops into your head at any time, just tap on your Pixel Buds and ask away.

That means quick access to whether there’s snow in the forecast, how tall this year’s Rockefeller Center Christmas tree is, and what Santa is up to at the North Pole.

But get this...what’s absolutely mind-blowing about the Pixel Buds, is live language translation when you pair them with an original Pixel or Pixel 2 smartphone. Just imagine heading to Europe to celebrate the holidays in Germany and being able to carry on a conversation in German when you don’t speak a word yourself. Instead as you speak english your phone will speak out of its speaker in German. And when the person you’re talking to talks in German you’ll hear english in your Pixel Buds. How cool is that?!

You can learn more about the Google Pixel Buds at VerizonWireles.com

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 -  Pompey’s Pillar

In eastern Montana, the Yellowstone River is lined with rimrock cliffs that extend more than a hundred feet in the air.  They posed a substantial obstacle to settlers moving west, as well as migrating herds of bison, deer, and elk and the wolves that followed them.  At one point, about thirty miles east of Billings, a pillar of rock rises from the prairie, seemingly chunked out of the wall and moved across the water.  From many angles it’s easy to miss this huge feature, but the resulting gap provides a way past the rimrock, and the pillar has been a guidepost to travelers for centuries.    
    This rock monolith is now a national monument, and our daughter Maggie just spent a season working there as a park ranger.  We’ll let her tell you a bit about it.
    In the summer of 1806, William Clark was traveling down the Yellowstone River with part of the Corps of Discovery, including their guide Sacajawea and her infant son Jean-Baptiste, affectionately nicknamed Pomp by Clark.  They had separated from the rest of the group at Travelers Rest, four hundred miles to the west.  Lewis took another group north to explore the farther reaches of the Marias River, planning to meet up with Clark a month later at the confluence of the Missouri and the Yellowstone.
    Clark and his party intended to travel on the river, but had not been able to find trees large enough to make suitable canoes.  When one of the party was injured, they were forced to make do with the best trees they could find in the area, and spent several days hollowing cottonwood logs.  The river journey was uneventful until they reached the pillar, which Clark named in honor of Jean-Baptiste.  Pompy’s Tower was later renamed Pompey’s Pillar by the editor of the Corp’s journals.  Look back at the Roadtreking blog from October of 2015 and you can find Mike’s enthusiastic report of visiting the pillar.  The visitor center is closed for the winter, but you can still walk in and visit from dawn to dusk, and all the facilities will be open again in May of next year.
    Summer is a good time to visit, because you can experience Clark’s Days.  Free admission and camping, Native American dancing, cowboy poetry, live music, campfires by the river, bird walks, stargazing, traditional foods, and historic reenactments.  It’s a big deal!  Check the park website foe dates.  Last year it was at the end of July.  If you come, try not to miss the cabin.  It’s the old visitor center, at the foot of the Pillar, and has an extensive display of native Montana wildlife.  You can touch the pelts of bison, fox, wolf,  and grizzly bear.  Summer is also the time to see yellow-bellied marmots, who make their home in the cracks and crevices of the Pillar.
    We had a great visit, and went on west to see several other sites from this amazing chapter of our national history.  Among them was a visit to the National Museum of the Plains Indian in Browning, outside the east entrance of Glacier park.  This museum sits on a dusty woebegone plot of ground across from a diner and the grandly-named Glacier Peaks casino.  It’s a completely nondescript 1940s brick building, and it looked uninhabited when we stopped in the parking lot.  Don’t be fooled.  It would be a shame to miss the rich and varied displays of native textiles, pipes, and other crafts found inside.
    We also took time to watch a thirty-minute film called Two Worlds at Two Medicine, a Blackfeet Indian documentary of the only fatal encounter in all of Lewis & Clark’s travels.  It was instructive to see the event, in which two young Blackfeet braves were killed and Lewis nearly lost his life, from the perspective of the indigenous people.  We had lunch at the casino, too.  The hamburger and rice soup, served in styrofoam bowls was nothing to write home about, but the hot fry bread that came with it was outstanding.
    You can find Lewis & Clark sites across the west, and every one of them will be worth the time you take to stop and explore.  Poke your head into the Lewis & Clark Caverns near Three Forks or look at Oscar Howe’s murals in Mobridge, South Dakota.  Come see us at Pompey’s Pillar and I’ll tell you about Sergeat Pryor and the bull boats he made from bison hides.  And while you’re out there, look for my parents, Patti & Tom Burkett, wandering around off the beaten path.

Resources:

http://roadtreking.com/pompeys-pillar-a-must-stop-in-montana/

https://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/lewisandclark/pom.htm

https://www.doi.gov/iacb/museum-plains-indian

This part of the podcast is sponsored by Steinbring Motorcoach, Roadtrek’s newest dealer and a third generation family business in Minnesota’s beautiful Chain of Lakes region built on quality motorhomes and excellent pricing and service.

Direct download: RT166.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 3:44pm EDT

Episode #165: The Girl Camping Movement

No, I’m not being politically incorrect. There really is a Girl Camping Movement and it is one of the fastest growing segments of the recreational vehicle movement.  Women old and young are following their dreams, buying an RV and traveling the highways and byways of North America. In this week’s episode, we talk to the leading ambassador foe the Girl Camping Movement, who has a lot to teach us all about the joys of traveling with an RV.

Plus, we have RV news, Tips and travel ideas…all coming up in this episode of the RV Podcast.
Click the player below to Listen Now or scroll down through the show note details. When you see a time code hyperlink, you can click it to jump directly to that segment of the podcast.

Show Notes for Episode #165  Nov.8, 2017 of Roadtreking - The RV Podcast:

WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK

We’re back home in Michigan after pretty much two months on the road. We’ll be here through Thanksgiving, then we head to Louisville for the annual trade show by the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association.

We get to be reunited with our dog BO tomorrow. Bo has been in special advance off-leash training while we’ve been traveling. We’ll shoot some video and show you how he’s done.

Speaking of dogs, we had lots of reaction to last week’s topic in episode 164 about the scandal of fake service dogs. It’s become a national disgrace and we’re sorry to say, a lot of RVers are involved, registering their dogs as service animals when, in fact, they have had no real service dog training and the registration is just a sham so they can take their pets with them wherever they want. We had lots of calls, comments and emails about this but we want to play one of them that illustrates why these fake service dogs create so many issues.

We played a voice message from Kathy who owns a real therapy dog and is being penalized because there are so many fake service dogs out there. Therapy dogs provide a real service. They are registered and trained and visit hospitals, special needs centers, hospices schools, nursing homes, and other facilities. They are owned by caring volunteers who are willing to share their special canines to bring smiles and joy to people, young and old alike.

This portion of the Podcast is brought to you by Campers Inn, the RVer’s trusted resource for over 50 years, the nation’s largest family-operated RV dealership with 16 locations and growing

 JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

OK…this week’s tip comes directly from Jennifer’s School of Hard Knocks.

Yes, I learned this tip the hard way. And it happened this past week as we were packing for a long 1,000-mile trip from Florida to Michigan

After we started loading up the RV last Friday, we went through our usual routine of bringing in all the clothing, the food items and the related things we needed for the trip home.

When I went to the lower storage cabinet next to our refrigerator, I noticed a smell. Not a dirty smell… a clean one! A very clean one.

You guessed it, my dish soap had spilled… all over the bottom of the cabinet.

It was a mess. Dish soap t had even leaked out f the cabinet onto the floor of the RV.

It took pretty much a whole roll of paper towels and 15 minutes on my hands and knees sopping up the mess. And then we had to wait another hour to resume packing for everything to completely dry.

The lesson? Store your cleaning supplies in a container, were they can’t tip over.

I should have known better. But now you do. Hope my hard luck lesson will spare you the extra and needless work I went through.

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 ,an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping  

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK

Sandy has a question on turning up the heat in her new SS Agile motorhome…

Viccy has a concern about her excessively noisy Webasto Heater on her Roadtrek coach. After giving our thoughts, we refer both to Roadtrek’s special support line at 800-663-0066

We just did a video on YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel about our Alde heater. You can find it at http://rvlifestylechannel.com

A listener wants to travel in his RV to Alaska but is seeking to go with a group. We offer some thoughts and refer him to our Facebook Group at http://facebook.com/groups/roadtreking

 

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.

 

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK – The Girl Camping Movement

Our guest today is Janine Pettit, who’s has become an ambassador for the fast-growing Girl Camping movement.

 

She encourages women to go places and do things on her podcast Girl Camper, on her blog for Go RVing, her Facebook Page and through her frequent public speaking engagements.

She is a lifelong lover of camping who took a 25 year sabbatical when she married a non-camper!

She discovered that camping was still in the cards for her when she stumbled onto an article about a women’s outdoor adventure group that travels around the country in RVs, meeting new friends, checking off bucket list adventures and doing things she had only dreamed of.

Girl Camper Resources Mentioned:

Sisters on the Fly

GirlCamper.com

 

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

 

TRAVELING TECH TIP:

By Steve Van Dinter

 Verizon Wireless

 

Now that it’s November, folks are already starting to talk holiday, which means family gatherings, gift shopping and meal prep.

Thankfully, help is available thanks to today’s technology.

Google Assistant on your Pixel 2 can help with a variety of cooking tasks. Just squeeze the sides and ask for a recipe to cook the perfect turkey or a substitution for butter in mashed potatoes if you run out at the last minute. In addition, when it comes to taking the picture perfect family photo, you’re covered thanks to a best in class camera as well as portrait mode. And with unlimited photo and video storing for Pixel 2 users - you never have to worry about running out of space.

We know your hands aren’t always going to be clean (or free) in the kitchen. So simply say, “Hey Google, play some holiday music” to create a festive atmosphere from your Google Home Mini  without lifting a finger. And if you have multiple google homes in your house you can link them all together and make the music play throughout.

Set and name multiple cooking calendars so you can juggle everything at the same time. Just say, “Hey Google, set a 3 hour time called turkey” and you’re set.

Step by step cooking instructions are now available as well. Just search on your device for a recipe then click on the “Send to Google Home” button. Then say “Ok Google, start cooking” and it’ll walk you step by step through the recipe!

If you find menu planning challenging, you’ll want to try the Food Planner app. Create your own recipes or import the ones you find from any website. Input an inventory of the ingredients you have on hand and Food Planner will create a grocery list of items still needed.

And if you really want to make sure your turkey doesn’t go a-fowl, make sure you download the Butterball Cookbook Plus App to your device. From selecting the right size bird, to adding the right sides and seeing the recipes come to life in video, this app has it all.

Looking to warm up your environment but don’t have a fireplace? No worries. With a flat screen TV and Chromecast Ultra you can cast a high definition virtual fireplace into your home. Then after dinner use it to stream a heart-warming holiday movie.

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 -  Watch the Blue Angels Practice

The Blue Angels is the U.S. Navy’s flight exhibition team, made up of aviators form the Navy and Marines. Each year, they perform before 15 million people in exciting air shows all across the country.

But here’s a great tip: If you’re down along Florida’s panhandle from March through October, you can watch them practice twice a week. It makes for a great RV Sidetrip, as we show in the video at https://youtu.be/xn7JmyQmp_w

For more info and a schedule of practices for the team, go to http://www.navalaviationmuseum.org/attractions/blue-angels/

 

This part of the podcast is sponsored by Steinbring Motorcoach, Roadtrek’s newest dealer and a third generation family business in Minnesota’s beautiful Chain of Lakes region built on quality motorhomes and excellent pricing and service.

 

 

Direct download: RT165.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 6:08pm EDT

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