Thursday, 10 November 2011


                       The RV Corner with “CAPTAIN KIRK” & “STEVE”

      Who is CAPTAIN KIRK?                 Who is STEVE?                         

Captain Kirk is a Sales rep. at  Fraserway RV in Abbottsford BC with 20 years of experience. Steve is a Computer Engineer that operates computers.
What could these two have in common? They both love RV’s and RVing and met when Steve purchased his 5th wheel.
The purpose of this blog is to supply links for sales and service and contact information of other groups on Twitter, Facebook etc. This will assist people in getting connected to the right services or RV social group they looking for. Topics ranging from RV repairs to locations of RV parks. There are also pages listed on this site with different recipies for different life styles. 
We real hope you would try many of the things offered on this site, and we will see down the road some day.
The sharing of information and the experience that will benefit everyone. We have RV's listed for sale and recipies to suit different life styles with RV's and RVing so please try them and let us know.
RV Sales sites.
city of vancouver recreational vehicles classifieds - craigslist

RV resorce sites and pages on Social Media sites:
Colton RV                                                           RV
RV America by MaxxAir                                    RV Travel
Adventure RV                                                      Camco RV
RV                                                                        Rick Snyder Rv
RV Road Trippers                                                Suncoast RV
Rv Moda                                                              Embrace RV
Cajun Palms RV Resort                                       Danforth Bay Camping & RV Resort
(rv)                                                                       Wine Country RV Resort
Bish's RV Super Center                                       The Mill Casino RV Park
Crain RV                                                              RV Trader
INTERIORISMO RV                                          Cruise America RV Rental & Sales
RV Education 101                                                Auto & RV Publications
Hilltop RV Superstore                                         EverGreen RV
Eby's Pines RV Park & Campground                  Trailside RV Center
Spicy RV                                                              Texan RV Ranch
Loon Lake Lodge & RV Resort                           Palomino RV
Encore RV                                                            Mike Thompsons RV Super Stores
Poche's Fish-N-Camp RV Park                            Twin Mountain RV Park
Country Boys RV Park, Madison                         Nexus RV
Vogt RV Center                                                    Sun n Fun RV Resort
Tacoma RV Center                                               
Fraserway RV - Abbotsford                                 Fraserway RV Rentals
There are many more RV sites on Facebook if you know of one please post it on this blog.
Twitter Sites
TheGoodSamClub                                              TinCanTourists
RVGuys                                                              Gr8LakesCamper
myrvlink                                                             rvtravel
Charlotte_RV                                                     vintagetrailer
RTGFulltimeRVin                                             rvdailyreport
travelbyrv                                                           VogelTalksRVing
RVeducation101                                                FraserwayrvAbby
rvcampreview                                                   FromAnRV
RVzen                                                               StalkupsRV
boomerRVer                                                    GreenRVingUSA
TweetThisRV                                                   alaskarv
Motorhomedotcom                                          rvcampingtip
 myrvlink                                                         RVnet
 MtnViewRVPark                                             bishs
camperclinic2                                                  MtnViewRVPark
 TacomaRvCenter                                           DeansRV
 calamityjaimie                                                Kaizen1
 bodycoach2                                                  HubCityRV
 www606060com                                          PointSouthKOA
 brennduftruck                                                RVTWEETER
 PassportAmerica                                           TravelingOTO
 CoolCamping                                                CampsitePhotos
 MyARVC                                                     TravelTrailPlop   
 CampingRoadTrip                                         RVBulldog
 RVPROMagazine                                         GlacierBayRV
 WSJourney                                                   ExcelRV
 TheRVSecurity                                              Rvingandmore
 rvtraveler2                                                     rvcampreview
 BigRigResorts                                               RVWheelLife
 AbeLaudofun                                                campfireinacan
 failxtrail                                                         MotorhomeRepubc
 RVtalks                                                         jellystonehc

 There are many other sites on Twitter so please post them on the blog or drop us line at
STEPHENBAKER2 on twitter or contact CAPTAIN KIRK at, You can become a member and use your Twitter, Facebook, or Google account to log in and become a member. You can also have updates e-mailed to you.

See our RV ads on twitter. Click below. 


    1) Drain the FRESH, GALLEY, and BLACK WATER TANKS and the HOT WATER HEATER. Consider installing an "easy drain" plug in the future ease of draining during other times of the year to stop foul water build up.
    2) While draining is occurring.
    a)Find all areas that will need RV ANTIFREEZE such as taps, toilet, outside shower, city water hook-up, ice-maker, in-line water filter, washer.
    b) Make sure all taps are closed.
    c) Find the back of the HOT WATER HEATER to determine if your trailer has a bypass. It could be a single-valve or triple-valve bypass with a tube running between the hot and cold tubing that enters and exits the tank.
    d) If you have a single valve bypass turn the handle so it is pointing up - so NO antifreeze can go into your hot water tank. If you have a triple-valve bypass, turn the top and bottom valve handles so they point ACROSS the tube and the center valve so the handle is vertical -in line with the tubing.
    e) The BYPASS must remain in the WINTERIZED position until you finish your DE-WINTERIZING PROCESS in the spring when you prepare your trailer for camping use.
    f) If you do NOT have a HOT WATER BYPASS, we would recommend installing one for permanent convenience.
    3) Find your WATER PUMP. It should be close to your FRESH WATER TANK. If you can't see it, turn on the water pump switch and open a tap. Listen for it because they are often located behind a removable panel or under a bed or dinette seat.
    a)Confirm whether you have a winterizing line-usually a clear tube coming off a T-connection with a valve on it-between your fresh water tank and your water pump. If you don't have a winterizing line, we would recommend installing a permanent one.
    b) If you wish to proceed with winterizing (without a permanent winterizing line) disconnect the hose that comes from the fresh water tank AT THE WATER PUMP. Connect a temporary line to this same input to the water pump. Insert this temporary line into a 4-litrecontainer RV ANTIFREEZE. You will likely require two 4-litre containers for winterizing the average trailer.
    4)Turn on the water pump.Since all your taps should be closed, the pump should turn off in about 5-10 seconds once the lines are pressurized. If it doesn't shut off quickly, a tap maybe open OR no antifreeze is being sucked up from the container and you may have to pour some antifreeze into the winterizing line to get the pump started.
    5) With the pump on and the lines pressurized, open one tap at a time until the antifreeze comes out of the tap. Start with the tap closest to the water pump. Close the tap and continue to the next one.Make sure some antifreeze goes into the sink drain(s), toilet and tub drains to displace standing water in the traps and keep them from freezing. Don't forget the outside shower.If you don't know how to do washers or ice-maker lines or how to handle water filters, have an RV service department show you the first time. The cost to learn how to do it right is less than the cost to fix the damage you may cause.
    6) After everything has recieved antifreeze.,
    a) Pull the winterizing line out of the antifreeze container and run the pump to empty the line.
    b) With an inside tap OPEN and the water pump turned OFF,go outside and push on the center of the city water hook-up to let out any trapped water.
    7) If you have NOT installed a permanent WINTERIZING line, disconnect the temporary winterizing line from the water pump and reconnect the line from the FRESH water tank to the water pump - very important!
    8) Pour the remaining antifreeze down all the sink drains and tub/shower drains to displace any standing water in the P-traps.
    9) Wipe up antifreeze in sinks and elsewhere to eliminate the possibility of any staining.

  2. PART1
    YUCK!! – The BLACK WATER Tank.
    With proper care odors from black water tanks need not happen. Read on to learn how!
    Black Water, of course, refers to the discolored, tainted, and smelly water that is discharged from the toilet bowl into a single holding tank. Please understand that this is a holding tank, not a septic tank. There is a big difference between the two.
    One thing I have learned when a discussion turns to “black water” is that there is little, if any, agreement on what chemical to use in the holding tank to control odors and break down waste. Nor does everyone believe it is necessary to flush the tank to have it “squeaky clean”. We DO seem to have a common agreement on how to dump the black tank.
    I have been dealing with black water holding tank issues for years.
    To begin, lets take a look at what is in the tank (not visually, just from a chemical perspective).
    Water – just plain tap water from any clean water source
    Tissue – the material often used to clean the backside of the human body.
    Solid waste or feces – what I grew up knowing as #2.
    Liquid waste or urine – what I grew up knowing as #1.
    ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ELSE SHOULD BE ALLOWED IN THE TANK – No dental floss, sanitary feminine products, cigarette butts, food, flushable cleaning pads, paper towels, table napkins, chewing gum, cotton balls, or plastic bags containing pet waste. Nothing but pee, poop, RV rated tissue and water.
    OK – you are most likely thinking: “What about the chemical additive?” and possibly, “Why can’t I put the items Randy just listed in the RV potty – I (may) do it at home?”
    It is like this: They do not dissolve or break down in water; they will remain as solids and can easily become stuck in drainpipe elbows and slide valves. If you have ever tried to remove an obstruction in a RV holding tank with a plumber’s snake or a section of wire you know it is something you NEVER want to try again.
    ALL black water tanks need water – plenty of water – to operate properly. There is a tendency to empty the tank and then begin using it without adding any water, or only a small amount. My belief is that you must have at least 25% of your tank capacity as water to begin with. For a typical 40-gallon black water tank, this translates to 10 gallons of water.
    I add 10 gallons of fresh water back into the black tank after I have dumped. Yes, it goes with me when I leave the dump station and it does add an additional 80 pounds of weight to the RV. As I drive down the road, it sloshes around in the tank acting just like an agitator in a washing machine.
    How do I measure 10 gallons? You can use a bucket filled from the shower or tub faucet. But, an easier way is simply to run water into the potty for four minutes. Most all RV water systems are flow limited to 2.5 gallons per minute.
    To these 10 gallons of fresh water, I toss in one Cascade Automatic Dishwasher Action PAC before I pull away from the dump station. The package contains Sodium Carbonate, a water softener also known as “washing soda”; Sodium Silicate, often called “Water Glass” and used as a scrubbing agent; along with a little Dawn detergent, enzymes and perfume. Together, the Action Pac and 10 gallons of water sloshing around in your tank as you drive down the road will clean the inside of your tank, the surface of your electronic level sensors and help break-up any waste or tissue remaining in your tank. The solution does have some inherent deodorizing characteristics and WILL NOT kill the good bacteria generated by some holding tank additives.

  3. PART-1
    YUCK!! – The Nastiest Part of a RV is Inside the BLACK WATER Tank.
    With proper care odors from black water tanks need not happen. Read on to learn how!
    Black Water, of course, refers to the discolored, tainted, and smelly water that is discharged from the toilet bowl into a single holding tank. Please understand that this is a holding tank, not a septic tank. There is a big difference between the two.
    One thing I have learned when a discussion turns to “black water” is that there is little, if any, agreement on what chemical to use in the holding tank to control odors and break down waste. Nor does everyone believe it is necessary to flush the tank to have it “squeaky clean”. We DO seem to have a common agreement on how to dump the black tank.
    I have been dealing with black water holding tank issues for years.
    To begin, lets take a look at what is in the tank (not visually, just from a chemical perspective).
    Water – just plain tap water from any clean water source.
    Tissue – the material often used to clean the backside of the human body.
    Solid waste or feces – what I grew up knowing as #2.
    Liquid waste or urine – what I grew up knowing as #1.
    ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ELSE SHOULD BE ALLOWED IN THE TANK – No dental floss, sanitary feminine products, cigarette butts, food, flushable cleaning pads, paper towels, table napkins, chewing gum, cotton balls, or plastic bags containing pet waste. Nothing but pee, poop, RV rated tissue and water.
    OK – you are most likely thinking: “What about the chemical additive?” and possibly, “Why can’t I put the items Randy just listed in the RV potty – I (may) do it at home?”
    It is like this: They do not dissolve or break down in water; they will remain as solids and can easily become stuck in drainpipe elbows and slide valves. If you have ever tried to remove an obstruction in a RV holding tank with a plumber’s snake or a section of wire you know it is something you NEVER want to try again.
    ALL black water tanks need water – plenty of water – to operate properly. There is a tendency to empty the tank and then begin using it without adding any water, or only a small amount. My belief is that you must have at least 25% of your tank capacity as water to begin with. For a typical 40-gallon black water tank, this translates to 10 gallons of water.
    I add 10 gallons of fresh water back into the black tank after I have dumped. Yes, it goes with me when I leave the dump station and it does add an additional 80 pounds of weight to the RV. As I drive down the road, it sloshes around in the tank acting just like an agitator in a washing machine.
    How do I measure 10 gallons? You can use a bucket filled from the shower or tub faucet. But, an easier way is simply to run water into the potty for four minutes. Most all RV water systems are flow limited to 2.5 gallons per minute.
    To these 10 gallons of fresh water, I toss in one Cascade Automatic Dishwasher Action PAC before I pull away from the dump station. The package contains Sodium Carbonate, a water softener also known as “washing soda”; Sodium Silicate, often called “Water Glass” and used as a scrubbing agent; along with a little Dawn detergent, enzymes and perfume. Together, the Action PAC and 10 gallons of water sloshing around in your tank as you drive down the road will clean the inside of your tank, the surface of your electronic level sensors and help break-up any waste or tissue remaining in your tank. The solution does have some inherent deodorizing characteristics and WILL NOT kill the good bacteria generated by some holding tank additives.
    The next time I arrive at a dump station, which may be days or even weeks if the camper sits at home, I dump the solution and add another 10 gallons of clean water. To these 10 gallons, I add my holding tank “chemical”.

  4. PART-2
    YUCK!! – The Nastiest Part of a RV is Inside the BLACK WATER Tank.
    After years of trying just about every holding tank chemical made, I prefer either the enzyme or bacterial generation additives to the formaldehyde or para-formaldehyde formulations. Formaldehyde additives attempt to kill all bacteria in the holding tank – thus hoping to eliminate odors. They may also contain some detergents. These frequently used chemicals (usually blue in color) are banned in some states and at many campgrounds, since they can quickly destroy the bacteria needed for successful operation of a sewage septic system. They are the chemical of preference for small self-contained portable toilets and the big outdoor job site or rental toilets. They can do a good job of keeping odors away in these facilities. But, there is still the environmental issue to contend with when disposing of formaldehyde based chemical waste.
    My personal preference is an additive called ODORLOS. It promotes the growth of good bacteria that, IMHO, eliminates odors and breaks down waste extremely effectively. Unfortunately, your tank must be completely free of any formaldehyde or chlorine based chemicals for ODORLOS to work. Any remaining chemicals from another product will kill the needed bacteria. This keeps ODORLOS from working, the tank stinks, and people who “try” it are generally disappointed and go back to formaldehyde agents. Numerous other enzyme and bacterial additives available in liquid, tablet and granular form will work well. But, all will require a tank free of formaldehyde to work properly. It may take several dumps and rinses to get the tank clean enough for these chemicals to work properly.
    Yet another issue with RV black water tanks is what brand or type of toilet tissue should you use?
    The tissue must dissolve or break-up into smaller pieces easily. We do not want a wad of paper in there that can obstruct drain lines and valves. Most (but not all) RV toilet tissue is single ply. I am not convinced this is necessary since we end up using twice as much as we would with 2-ply tissue.
    Before using any tissue that is not rated for RV holding tanks, you should conduct this simple test:
    Put a sample of your favorite toilet tissue into a plastic bottle, jar, or a glass of plain water with a few drops of liquid detergent. As a control, put an equal volume of a leading RV tissue into a second jar. Shake or stir both jars for a few seconds and place them on a table or counter.
    Return in approximately two hours and shake or stir both containers again. When you examine the tissue inside the jar, it should be dissolving into little pieces that fill the jar. If it is NOT dissolving as well as the “control” jar of RV branded tissue, do not use it in your black tank. Repeat the test with other brands you like – even those not rated for RV use – to see if they are black tank compatible.
    Remember that there are as many opinions on how to maintain an odor free black water tank as there are people owning RVs. Type the following into bing or google: black water tanks and you will find literally hundreds of ideas ranging from using bags of ice to clean the tank as you leave a campsite to homemade concoctions to put into the tank. Weigh each suggestion carefully before adopting the method.

  5. Winter Battery Storage & Maintance
    PART 1
    Q: Hi Kirk welive in BC and arepreparing our RV for storage. Ijust had the RV winterized, butIam concered aboutthe howor what to do store my RV batteries. Any advice would be appreciated.
    A:The two most common causes for RV battery failure are undercharging andovercharging. Undercharging is a result of batteries being repeatly discharged and not fully recharged between cycles. If a battery is not recharged the sulfate material that attaches to the discharged portions of the plates begins tohardeninto cystals. Over time this sulfatecannot be converted back intoactive plate material and the batteryis ruined. This alsooccurs when a battery remains discharged for an extendedperiod of time, like during storage. Sulfation is the number one cause of battery failure. The second leading cause of battery failure is overcharging batteries results in severe waterloss and plate corrosion. Letslook at howtostore your RV batteris properly.
    Before we talk about storing the batteries we need to talk about battery safety. Lead acid batteries contain sulfuric acid which is extremely corrosive and can cause severe burns or evenblindness. The hydrogen gas that batteries produce, when they are charging, is very explosive. When you work around batteries you need towear safety glasses and gloves, remove all jewelry and donot smoke or use any flames.
    WARNING: If you accedentily get battery acid on your skin, flush it with lots of water and if it gets in your eyes flushwith low pressure water for 15 minutes and get medical attion imediatly (Go to the hospitial).
    When you put your RV in long term storage it's agood ideato remove the bateries andput them in storage too.This is quit simpleto do. The first thing we want to do is visually inspect the batteries for anyobvious damage. Any fluid on or around the battery may be replacedimmediatly. Whenever you removeany battery always rember to remove the negative terminal or cablefirst, and then the positive cable.
    TIP: When you removea battery turn off the ignition switc,allelectricalswitches, and any battery disconnect switchesbefore youdisconnect thebattery cables. When ever you remove any battery disconnect switches beforeyou disconnect thebattery cables. Whenever you remove any battery cableslabel them first soyou rember howthey gobackonthe battery next spring. When you reinstall the battery do it in reverse order.Install the positive cablefirstand then the negative cable.
    Clean the batteries with a 50/50 mixture of baking soda and water. Now you can checkthe electrolyte level in each cell and add distilledwater if necessary.Theminimum level required, before charging a battery, is at the top of the plates. Ifit is below the plates add enough distilled water tocover the plates before you charge the battery.
    Test the battery state of charge with a voltmeter and charge any batteries that are below 80% state of charge. An 80% charge is approximately12.5 volts for a 12 volt battery and 6.5 volts for a 6volt battery. Lead sulfationstarts when a battery state of chargedropsbelow 80%. After charging the batteries checkand fill each cell to1/8 inch below thefillwellwithdistilled water. Overfilling cells will cause battery acid to overflow.
    WARNING: Batteries should be charged in a well ventilated area and keep any sparks and open flames away from a battery being charged. Check the electolite levels beforeand after charging batteries.

  6. Winter Battery Storage & Maintance
    PART 2
    A discharged or partially charged battery will freeze much faster than a charged battery. Store the batteries in a cool dry place but not where they could freeze. Batteries in storage will loose a percent of current through internal leakage. It is not uncommon for a battery to discharge up to 10% a month when it is being stored. Cold temperatures slow this natural discharge process down and warmer temperatures speed the process up. Test the stored batteries state of charge every month and charge batteries that are at or below 80% state of charge.
    Completely charge the batteries before you re-install them next spring. For maximum performance you can equalize the batteries after they are fully charged. Battery equalizing is a controlled overcharge on a flooded lead acid battery after it has been fully charged. Equalizing reverses the buildup of negative chemical effects like stratification, a condition where the water and acid separate and the acid concentration is greater at the bottom of the battery than at the top. Equalizing also helps remove some of the sulfate build up on battery plates. Equalizing is fine as long as there is not excessive heating or electrolyte boiling over. Some battery chargers have an equalization cycle or charge setting. After charging a battery, set the battery charger on equalizing voltage and charge again. You need to test the specific gravity every hour during equalizing. Equalization is complete when the specific gravity reading no longer rise during the gassing or bubbling stage. Keep in mind if equalizing a battery is done correctly the electrolyte should not boil over but it will create a good bit of bubbling, and when the cycle is finished you will need to add distilled water to the cells.
    NOTE: If you don't feel comfortable working around lead acid batteries have battery maintenance done by an authorized service center.
    If you decide to leave the batteries in the RV while it is in storage remember to check the state of charge monthly and charge batteries at or below 80% charge. If your RV converter charger charges the battery(s) at a constant rate (around 13.5 volts) this is to high for a float charge and can deplete the electrolyte over time. In this situation plug the RV in periodically and allow the converter multi-stage chargers and aftermarket chargers designed to maintain a float charge on the battery without removing the batteries from the RV. Remember, for the converter charger to work the RV will need to be plugged in to electricity.

  7. There has been an interesting trend emerging in RV sales. People are purchasing RVs to live in. Why? I recently asked this one young mother. She told me that she wanted to buy a house of her own instead of renting. If she did qualify for a mortgage it would take the rest of her life and the life of her young son to pay off the mortgage. She purchased a 25 foot trailer for her husband and son to live in. They figure that by the end of 2012 she will have saved enough money to pay 60% down on a mortgage for a house. Their mortgage payments will be easier to handle. In short younger people are purchasing a RV as a stepping stone to owning a home. Older people are purchasing RVs and selling their houses so they can have flexibility to travel and free up some capital. I think it is great that people are doing that. It’s a life style change that many people are opting to do.

    I have a friend who was injured on the job. He ended up selling his house and bought a fifth wheel to live in. He and his wife and two boys are having a great time. He is in the movie industry. When he's working on movie sets at various locations he takes the 5tth wheel and the family with him. The kids are home schooled. It has turned out to be a great adventure for the whole family.

    Another friend bought a small Boler travel trailer to live in a park for a year so he and his wife could save up to buy a home. They got a surprise eight months later when they had a baby daughter. They decided to not to buy a home but to become full time RVers.

    The work I do for a living requires a degree of mobility. The RV lifestyle works well for me and my wife. Staying in a hotel is an expense I can live without. My clients are all over North America. Sometimes it is less expensive to drive to there home town in my motor home. With modern technology and the internet I can travel freely, meet new people and have an adventure every day. I love this lifestyle!

  8. This next one was sent to me by Bob in Texas. It is written by Brenda Brooks Rosewood CA. at
    Can I Install a Tile Backsplash In Our RV?
    My husband did it! He burned a spot on the paneling by the stove and I want to cover it by installing a tile backsplash over the paneling. My concern is that the tile will not adhere properly to the paneling surface.

    I don't want tiles popping loose as we're driving down the road. I've installed floors and backsplash in our home, but never in an RV. Can it be done over the current wall paneling that's there?

    ANSWER: Greetings Brenda thanks for submitting your question.
    In an effort to get your husband out of the hot water he is evidently in, I will let you know that you can install a tile backsplash in your RV. But not being able to see the exact type of paneling you are talking about puts me at a disadvantage as to whether you can put the tile directly over your existing paneling.

    If the tile is installed properly using the proper adhesives for the material that you are tiling over there should not be a problem with the tiles cracking or falling off.

    What I suggest you do is take your RV to one of the local home improvement stores in your area and show them what type of paneling you are trying to tile over. They can tell you if you need to put something else in between the paneling and the tiles. Just make sure that the tile adhesive and tile grout is flexible enough to withstand vibrations.

    Since I have not had the opportunity to install a tile backsplash in my Motorhome, I cannot give you the step by step instructions, but maybe one of our visitors has done this and will be nice enough to leave a comment with more information for you.

    I wish you the best of luck and I hope that you are planning to let your husband out of the dog house soon. :-)

    Do you have any suggestions or comments on this topic?

  9. I would like to thank Bob in Texas for sending me this next article by by Brian (Lakehurst, NJ) posted on

    Should I Buy a Used RV That Has a Delamination Issue?

    I am looking at buying a 1999 30 ft coachman 305MB. I noticed some delamination on the passenger side pf the RV by the overhead bunk area, the window area by the door and in the back. The unit is in good condition otherwise.

    I am paying around $18,000 and for this price, a lot of the models I have seen have some delamination going on. Should I stay away from this unit? Again, I only can afford so much so this seems to be a issue in the price range that I am looking. It would be a shame to pass on this unit. It is the best one I have seen so far.

    ANSWER: Hi Brian thanks for submitting your question on our Ask An RV Question Page.

    The most common cause of delamination on RVs is due to water leaking into the walls of the RV. As long as there is moisture getting into those walls the delamination will continue and eventually the structural integrity of the RV can become compromised.

    Before you can even attempt to get the delamination repaired, you need to get the leak issues repaired.

    Depending on the severity of the delamination getting it properly repaired can be an expensive proposition. Delamination repair is not something that I would recommend a do-it-yourselfer RVer to attempt.

    In my opinion I would suggest that you steer clear of this motorhome. I believe that you can find an RV in your price range that does not have this costly problem.

    I would also suggest that you visit the Used RV Inspection Section of our website, where you will find some guidelines on what to inspect on a used RV before you decide to buy it.

    I hope this helps.

  10. I would like to thank Dave Grey for writing this artice and it can be found on
    thanks Dave.
    PART 1
    Before You Buy That RV, Truck or Other Tow Vehicle

    Your guide to matching any tow vehicle to any towable.

    by Dave Gray

    “I’m sorry sir, that truck can’t tow this trailer.”

    From my personal experience and the comments of others I’ve read on several forums I wonder if you’ll hear those words come from a salesperson - unless you pointed over to a Toyota Tacoma like I did. Of course, I was joking.

    Any salesperson’s job is to sell. As a buyer, I believe that it is important to have as much information in-hand as possible before purchasing. In some instances, NOT ALL, a salesperson may say whatever is needed to get you to buy without regard to what tow vehicle you have. After informing the salesman I had a 2008 Dodge Ram 2500 diesel, he perked up and assured me my truck was big enough for the 41 foot toy hauler I had my eyes on. “We tow these trailers all the time with 2500s,” the salesman said. To keep a long story short, I’ll tell you this; his untruthful sales pitch was revealed when I saw the bed of my 2500 nearly drop to the axle after raising the landing gear for the first time.

    This was my first purchase of any RV. Although I had done some research on towing and RVs, I learned quickly how little I knew. I’ve learned a lot since then. Now I hope to pass along some helpful information to you.

    One of the most common questions for RV buyers is something like this, “Can my truck tow that?” I considered developing an online calculator to help with that. Honestly, there isn’t any need for a specific calculator to assist you with knowing how much your vehicle can tow. All the information you need to know you will find below.

    Every automotive dealer provides a towing guide. In my experience, I've learned that some automotive sales people don’t understand towing capacity. It is your responsibility to find the towing guide for your specific vehicle model. In most cases, you can use the “Towing Guide” resource I’ve provided on this website. The critical information you need to find in the towing guide is your vehicle’s maximum trailer weight.


    In order to find the maximum trailer weight for your vehicle you’ll need to know the following information.

    Vehicle make and model

    Body style/drivetrain

    Bed length

    Engine size

    Transmission model

    Axle ratio

    For example, if you have a 2008 Dodge 2500, Quad Cab SLT, 4WD, 8.0 Ft. Bed with a 6.7L I6 Cummins Turbo Diesel Engine and 6-Spd Automatic 68RFE Transmission with an axle ratio of 4.10, your maximum trailer weight is 12,750 pounds.

    Now you need to look at the certification label on the trailer and find the trailer’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). (Note: Do not rely solely on the trailer brochure or an internet listing.) If the trailer’s GVWR is greater than the maximum trailer weight of your vehicle, then the trailer is too heavy. Always ensure that the trailer’s GVWR is less than the maximum trailer weight for your vehicle. Likewise, if you are buying a new vehicle, ensure that the vehicle's maximum trailer weight is greater than the trailer's GVWR.

    Another important matter you should know for most vehicle brands is that the maximum trailer weight is calculated assuming only a 150 pound driver is in the tow vehicle and it has all the required trailering equipment. The weight of additional optional equipment, passengers and cargo in the tow vehicle must be subtracted from the maximum trailer weight.

  11. PART 2 of Before You Buy That RV, Truck or Other Tow Vehicle


    Here is another method of knowing your maximum trailer weight if you're unable to find the published maximum trailer weight. This method takes into account the actual weight of your tow vehicle.

    Vehicle Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR)

    - (minus)

    Vehicle Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW)

    = (equals) Maximum Trailer Weight

    The maximum that any trailer should weigh is the difference between GVW and GCWR. If the manufacturer-specified maximum trailer weight is less, then it takes priority.


    Some vehicles may have a high GCWR but the hitch (pin) weight of some 5th wheel/gooseneck trailers may exceed the vehicle's rear GAWR. It's best to weigh your rear axle with with all the expected cargo. If you don't have a 5th Wheel hitch installed, add 200 pounds to the rear axle weight. Subtract the weighed rear axle weight from the rear GAWR. The difference will be how much more you can safely place on your rear axle. Also note that adding air bags and/or additional springs to the rear axle or changing the axle ratio will not change your certification label on your vehicle.

    Although I spent a few years of my life as a Field Engineer tracking satellites, rockets and the Space Shuttle, clearly you don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure out what your towing requirements are.

    "Information without application leads to frustration"

    Top 10 Trailer-Towing Tips: Mechanic's Diary (BY POPULAR MECHANICS AND CAN BE FOUND ON THEIR WEBSITE AT
    Proper trailer setup and maintenance are the keys to a successful tow trip. So before you head out to the road, make sure your truck and trailer are roadworthy. Where did I learn to tow a trailer? Or how to set one up? I learned the hard way, by towing a succession of second-hand rigs with whatever I had that had the power to pull. Some of these truck and trailer setups were really evil-handling beasts, and I was lucky to bring them (and myself) home in one piece.

    Don't confuse driving your car or truck with towing a trailer. The skill set overlaps only slightly. Everything takes longer when you are towing--speeding up, slowing down and cornering. Remember, you've got a second center of mass 10 or 20 ft behind you, and it's easy for the tail wag the dog. Aside from just physically getting the trailer hitched to the truck, here's a list of a few things to watch. We sure needed them for the heavy lifting during our exclusive comparison test pitting the new Ford F-150 and Dodge Ram against the competition.

  13. 1. Proper Tongue Weight
    Set tongue weight to 10 to 15 percent of the trailer's total weight for good stability. If the tow vehicle doesn't have enough rear suspension spring rate to accept this, get an equalizing hitch. The equalizing hitch will transfer some of the tongue weight forward to the front axle.

  14. 2. Safety Chains
    Cross the safety chains under the hitch side-to-side, in an X pattern. If, for whatever reason, the hitch comes adrift, the trailer tongue will drop onto the chains instead of onto the ground. And that will maximize your control and minimize the damage to you and your rig. Bonus: With the chains crossed, you can turn in a tighter circle without them binding.

  15. 3. Tire Pressure
    Check the tire pressures often. Run the tires at their maximum recommended pressure. They'll run cooler, and you'll consume less gas to boot.

  16. 4. Inspection
    Every time you pull over and stop on a long tow mission, do a walk-around inspection of the hitch, wiring and tires. Be sure the trailer harness connector and breakaway cable are still connected. Check the nut on the bottom of the hitch ball, and make sure that the hitch pin and its hairpin are still holding the drawbar on. You can probably skip checking the tire pressures at every pull-over, but a good thump of all four tires will let you know if one is low just by the sound. Now check the tire and brake drum and wheel-bearing temperatures. A noncontact infrared thermometer gun is cool, and will keep your hands clean, but just using the palm of your hand is fine. If one tire or bearing is noticeably hotter, you've got a problem.

  17. 5. Load Check
    No matter how tight you make the tiedowns for the load, they'll loosen up as the suspension jiggles everything. Stop after 10 miles and retighten, even if that means opening the door and crawling into an enclosed trailer.

  18. 6. Gas Saver
    Save fuel towing your RV trailer by dumping grey-, black-, and freshwater tanks before leaving on a trip, or before returning. Fill the freshwater tanks at or near your destination.

  19. 7. Time Smart
    Save a bunch of walking back and forth between the cab and trailer when hooking up. Connect the trailer plug, then turn on the parking lamps and the four-way flashers. Now all you need to do is walk to the back of the trailer once to see if the running lamps are on and the brake/turn-signal lamps are working.

  20. 8. Brakes
    As you start your tow trip, check electric brake function as soon as you can by sliding the brake controller lever over an inch or so. You should be able to feel the trailer brakes actuate. I check to make sure all the trailer brake shoes are working by holding the brakes on partway on for 10 seconds or so, and then pulling over and checking that they are all heating equally up with my IR thermometer.

  21. 9. Bearing Life
    Pack trailer bearings with the best synthetic wheel-bearing grease you can find, and do it annually. That goes double for boat trailers that are regularly immersed, and double double for trailers that see a lot of saltwater.

  22. 10. Battery Charge
    Trailers with electrical-operated brakes have a breakaway switch and a small 12-volt battery to actuate the trailer brakes if the hitch accidentally comes apart. Check the state of charge of that battery regularly. Many trailers have no provision for charging this battery, so it has to be charged manually. I add a diode to charge it from the trailer's plus 12-volt circuit. Got a smaller trailer with no courtesy lights or 12-volt wiring? Run the diode from the brake-light circuit. It'll charge the battery a little every time you touch the brakes.

  23. The Right Way to Tow a Trailer
    This article is by Popular Mechanics and can be found at
    The trailer is doing a lazy samba behind your SUV as you drive down the highway, swaying side to side far enough to intrude into the neighboring lanes and tug at your truck's rear end. It feels spooky and is, in fact, unsafe. Funny, the thing was as stable as an alpaca on a mountainside when you left this morning. Since then, the only changes you made were to fill the camper's water tank and to load the rear with camping gear and luggage.

    Towing a trailer can be a trial. Seemingly minor details—like adding a couple of hundred pounds to the rear—can make profound changes in the rig's stability. But by following a few simple guidelines, you can stay on track, towing with the utmost ease and safety.

    The Right Gear

    All hitches are not created equal. The weight that your vehicle can tow is specified by the manufacturer and listed in the owner's manual. Find two numbers: the gross trailer weight (GTW) and the maximum tongue weight. With those figures in hand, you can then pick the appropriate hitch; they are split into five classes based on weight:

    Class 1: 2000 pounds GTW/200 pounds tongue weight
    Class 2: 3500 pounds GTW/350 pounds tongue weight
    Class 3: 5000 pounds GTW/500 pounds tongue weight
    Class 4: 7500 pounds GTW/750 pounds tongue weight
    Class 5: 10,000 pounds GTW/1000 pounds tongue weight

  24. The Right Way to Tow a Trailer cont:
    My advice is to install a hitch receiver that's heavy-duty enough to match your vehicle's GTW and tongue-weight spec, even if you're planning on towing only a small trailer. Don't forget to factor in the weight of the trailer's contents—including the capacity of the fresh-, gray- and black-water tanks—when you're shopping hitches.

    Most hitches employ a removable drawbar, which holds the hitch ball. The bars come in two sizes: 1.25 inches (for lightweight pop-ups and bike racks) and 2 inches (for heavy loads).

    Hitch balls come in three main flavors: 17/8 inches, 2 inches and 25/16 inches. Generally, the bigger the ball, the more weight it can support. If you own two or more trailers that call for different ball sizes, I recommend buying separate drawbars with the proper balls permanently attached.

    Install the ball onto the drawbar to the proper torque—generally, several hundred foot-pounds. You'll have to use big tools and lots of muscle, and a generous squirt of threadlocker, which will keep moisture from penetrating the threads and freezing them up, allowing for easier removal.

    1. Cross the Chains for Safety

    Chains serve as the hitch of last resort: If the tongue ever loses its grip on the ball, the chains will keep the trailer from vaulting the guardrail into oncoming traffic or something equally inconvenient. Cross the chains under the tongue—if it slips free, it'll land on top of the crossed chains rather than hitting the pavement. A bonus of the X configuration: The chains won't come up short in tight turns.

    2. Check the Trailer-Wiring Harness

    This industry-standard plug and socket wiring and color-coding scheme should make it easy to install the connector properly to the tow vehicle's harness. Spray the contacts with dielectric grease to prevent corrosion.

  25. The Right Way to Tow a Trailer cont:
    3. Always Check the Brake Battery

    Trailers with electric brakes rely on a small gel-cell battery to initiate stopping when the breakaway lanyard is pulled. Normally, the battery charges whenever the truck engine is running. But it's smart to check it before hitting the road; faulty wiring or lengthy storage can sap the juice. Use a test light or voltmeter to make sure the battery is alive; if not, hook it up to an external charger to ensure the brakes are in working order.

    4. Set Your Tongue Weight

    Swaying trailers are almost always the result of insufficient tongue weight, because adding tongue weight adds stability.

    If there is zero tongue weight, the trailer's center of gravity (CG), the point around which it pitches, yaws and rolls, is centered between the tires' contact patches. This will provide no stability, specifically in yaw, or sway. Adding tongue weight, by moving cargo in the trailer forward, pulls the CG forward of the tire contact patches. The drag of the tires will tend to pull the CG back onto the centerline of the truck and trailer. The more tongue weight, the farther forward the CG goes, and the more stability in sway, right up until you add too much tongue weight for the tow vehicle's rear suspension to handle. Industry-wide, the target recommendation for tongue weight is 10 to 12 percent of total trailer weight. Here's how to check tongue weight if your trailer weighs so much that your bathroom scale won't read high enough. With the tongue resting on the beam one-third of the distance between the pivot and the scale, a 140-pound reading means that the total tongue weight is 420 pounds, just about right for a 4000-pound trailer.

    5. Set Up an Equalizing Hitch

    Once you've dialed in enough tongue weight for stability (about 10 percent of the trailer's weight), there may be too much pressure on the vehicle's hitch. Equalizing bars (right) induce a rotational force around the hitch and pivot horizontally, transferring some of the tongue weight to the vehicle's front axle. The stiffness of the bars needs to be correct for your particular trailer, so consult the manual or a trailering specialist. I generally adjust them so that when the equalizer bars are installed, the trailer hitch rises back to within 1 inch of its unladen ride height.

  26. The Right Way to Tow a Trailer cont:
    Setting the Hitch Height

    It's important that the loaded trailer be level to the ground when it's attached to the vehicle, and that you trim the trailer's flatness either with an adjustable drawbar or by finding one with the right offset. (If you end up using an offset drawbar, make sure it's rated to handle the trailer weight.)

    First, you need to find the height of the trailer's tongue when the trailer is level. Set up the trailer on flat pavement. Run the tongue jack up and down or prop it up on some scrap lumber until it's level. You can determine this by placing a carpenter's level on the tongue or by eyeballing the trailer from the side from a distance of about 50 feet. Measure from the ground to the top of the ball socket. Park the vehicle you'll use to tow the trailer on level ground too. Then measure from the ground to the top of the hitch receiver and add 3 inches to accommodate the height of the ball.

    Typically, the ball is a good bit higher than the trailer tongue, so the difference is the approximate amount the drawbar will have to be lowered. I say approximate because the weight of the trailer will compress the vehicle's springs. Hook up everything (with the trailer loaded) and again measure the trailer's attitude. You'll likely have to adjust the drawbar height again. I keep a few different drawbars on hand, but an adjustable one is a good investment.

    Loading Up

    Sure, you know how much the trailer weighs, because it's printed right there on the registration, right? Don't believe it, as the listed weight probably doesn't include a camper's furniture or the cargo on a utility trailer. Accessories added at the dealership, like an auxiliary battery, ramps, tie-down rails and whatnot, can make the gross weight climb substantially. (Don't complain to the trailer manufacturer—if your state charges by weight for the registration, you're saving a couple of bucks. ) The only real way to know is to weigh it, which you can do for a minimal fee at most stone-and-gravel yards, feed stores and truck stops.

    Before you head to the scales, load up all the items that you plan to haul, and fill the water and propane tanks. After you arrive, first get the overall trailer weight by disconnecting the trailer and resting the entire rig, wheels and tongue jack on the scale. Next, find the tongue weight by hitching up the trailer and leaving only its tires on the scale. The difference between the two measurements is the tongue weight. You want roughly 10 percent of the ­trailer's weight on the tongue. Shift the cargo fore and aft until you get the correct weight distribution. Note the position of the load (a camera phone comes in handy for this) so you know for next time. And if you're changing cargo but don't have time to visit the scales, use our home-brew method (see "Set Your Tongue Weight") to get an accurate measurement.

    Don't trust anything to stay put in or on a trailer once you're under way. Clip or bungee cabinet doors and drawers. Use ratchet tie downs to keep stuff in place.


    Inflate the tires to the trailer manufacturer's maximum recommended cold pressure. Heat is the tires' enemy, and a properly inflated tire will run cooler. Be even more careful of the small tires on light-duty trailers—the tiny outside diameter means they spin faster. A high-speed run on a hot day with a ton of bricks on board could overheat the tires or wheel bearings.

    Hooking Up

    Whenever you hook up the trailer, check that all of the lights are working. You can do this without making four trips up to the cab and toggling on all the turn signals and brake lights in succession. Turn on the parking lamps and the hazard flashers. Walk to the back of the trailer. If the parking lamps and flashers are on, you've got turn signals and brake lights, because they're the same filaments as the hazards. This assumes, of course, that the truck's brake lights are working.

  27. The Right Way to Tow a Trailer cont:
    On the Road

    Regardless of how tightly you cranked the tie downs on that car, bike or ATV, road vibration can loosen them. So, about 10 to 20 miles after you depart, stop and check their tension. After a few hours on the road—and every time you stop—inspect the trailer. Make sure the hitch and wiring are secure. Kick the tires to see if they're properly inflated. Tire pressure and properly functioning wheel bearings are crucial. Heat is the telltale sign: You just don't want any tire or wheel bearing to be significantly warmer than the others. I use an infrared thermometer—or my calibrated palm—to check the temperature of both. A tire becomes hotter if it has less air pressure than the others, so check for a leak. A toasty wheel bearing is on the verge of failing. At the very least, pop off the bearing cap to see if there's sufficient grease in the bearing cavity.

    Every morning, check the tow vehicle and trailer tire pressure, as well as the trailer lights and brakes. Ditto for any tie downs. Don't forget to shut off the propane at the tank and the electric water pump at the breaker. If you've got an auxiliary battery, be sure it's turned off and connected to the vehicle charging circuit so it'll charge while you're under way.

    One last tip: If you're trailering to a campground, leave the freshwater tank empty until you're on-site. No sense in towing several hundred pounds of water cross-country. Ditto for breaking camp: Empty the black-, gray- and fresh-water tanks at the campground instead of towing all that extra weight around.


  29. RV Fifth Wheel & Travel Trailer Towing Safety Tips
    When you tow a travel trailer or RV fifth wheel on the road you experience challenges that you will not encounter in a car, SUV or pickup when not towing.

    Towing a travel trailer or fifth wheel is a responsibility you should undertake with great care and safety should be your first concern. An accident while towing a travel trailer or fifth wheel can have much greater consequences than one with a small car.

    Consider the following safety tips each time you tow your fifth wheel RV or travel trailer.

    General Travel Trailer and Fifth Wheel RV Towing Tips

    If you are new to RV towing, take time to practice towing your travel trailer or fifth wheel before driving on main roads. Most seasoned RVers recommend finding a large vacant lot and setting up some traffic cones to practice turning and backing.
    Never allow anyone to ride in or on the travel trailer.
    Before you leave on a trip, remember to check routes and restrictions on bridges and tunnels.
    Use the trailer hitch system the manufacturer recommends for towing.
    Drive at moderate speeds. This will place less strain on your tow vehicle and RV trailer. Trailer instability (sway) is more likely to occur as speed increases.
    Avoid sudden stops and starts that can cause skidding, sliding, or jackknifing.
    Avoid sudden steering maneuvers that might create sway or undue side force on the travel trailer. Fifth wheels are less susceptible to side force sway but you should still be aware of the possibility.
    Slow down when traveling over bumpy roads, railroad crossings, and ditches.
    Make wider turns at curves and corners. Because your trailer’s wheels are closer to the inside of a turn than the wheels of your tow vehicle, they are more likely to hit or ride up over curbs.

    Parking a Fifth Wheel or Travel Trailer

    Try to avoid parking on grades. If possible, have someone outside to guide you as you park. Once stopped, but before shifting into Park, have someone place blocks on the downhill side of the trailer wheels. Apply the parking brake, shift into Park, and then remove your foot from the brake pedal. Following this parking sequence is important to make sure your vehicle does not become locked in Park because of extra load on the transmission. For manual transmissions, apply the parking brake and then turn the vehicle off in either first or reverse gear.
    When uncoupling a travel trailer or fifth wheel, place blocks at the front and rear of the trailer tires to ensure that the trailer does not roll away when the trailer hitch coupling is released.
    An unbalanced load may cause the tongue to suddenly rotate upward; therefore, before uncoupling, place jack stands under the rear of the trailer to prevent injury.

  30. RV Fifth Wheel & Travel Trailer Towing Safety Tips Cont:

    Backing Up Your Fifth Wheel or Travel Trailer

    Put your hand at the bottom of the steering wheel. To turn left, move your hand left. To turn right, move your hand right. Back up slowly. Because mirrors cannot provide all of the visibility you may need when backing up, have someone outside at the rear of the trailer to guide you, whenever possible.
    Use slight movements of the steering wheel to adjust direction. Exaggerated steering control will cause greater movement of the travel trailer. If you have difficulty, pull forward and realign the tow vehicle and trailer and start again.
    Apply the parking brake, shift into Park, and then remove your foot from the brake pedal. Following this parking sequence is important to make sure your vehicle does not become locked in Park because of extra load on the transmission. For manual transmissions, apply the parking brake and then turn the vehicle off in either first or reverse gear.
    When uncoupling a trailer, place blocks at the front and rear of the trailer tires to ensure that the trailer does not roll away when the coupling is released.
    In smaller trailers an unbalanced load may cause the tongue to suddenly rotate upward; therefore, before uncoupling, place jack stands under the rear of the trailer to prevent injury.

    Braking While Towing a Fifth Wheel or Travel Trailer

    Allow considerably more distance for stopping.
    If you have an electric trailer brake controller and excessive sway occurs, activate the trailer brake controller by hand. Do not attempt to control trailer sway by applying the tow vehicle brakes; this will generally make the sway worse.
    Always anticipate the need to slow down. To reduce speed, shift to a lower gear and press the brakes lightly.

  31. RV Fifth Wheel & Travel Trailer Towing Safety Tips Cont:

    Acceleration and Passing While Towing Your Travel Trailer or Fifth Wheel

    When passing a slower vehicle or changing lanes, signal well in advance and make sure you allow extra distance to clear the vehicle before you pull back into the lane.
    Pass on level terrain with plenty of clearance. Avoid passing on steep upgrades or downgrades.
    If necessary, downshift for improved acceleration or speed maintenance.
    When passing on narrow roads, be careful not to go onto a soft shoulder. This could cause your trailer to jackknife or go out of control.
    To control swaying caused by air pressure changes and wind buffeting when larger vehicles pass from either direction, release the accelerator pedal to slow down and keep a firm grip on the steering wheel.
    When excessive sway occurs, activate the trailer brake controller by hand. Do not attempt to control trailer sway by applying the tow vehicle brakes; this will generally make the sway worse.

    Towing Your Fifth Wheel or Travel Trailer on Downgrades and Upgrades

    Downshift to assist with braking on downgrades and to add power for climbing hills.
    On long downgrades, apply brakes at intervals to keep speed in check. Never leave brakes on for extended periods of time or they may overheat.
    Some tow vehicles have specifically calibrated transmission tow-modes. Be sure to use the tow-mode recommended by the manufacturer.

  32. RV Holding Tank Disaster

    by Randy N. Gayle
    (Baldwin, Michigan)

    1st year living n our RV. the campground owner said leave your blackwater tank open. NEVER NEVER do this!!!!! The tank clogged and it filled up to throat on the toilet. Now as you can imagine this creates an issue.

    The trailer was underpinned with a 24 x 36 inch access box off the side for water and sewer connections with a lid and that was my starting point. Snake in hand I entered and removed the 3 inch sewer connector and started the snake up the line... my thoughts right then were hmmmm 50 gallons sewage 1 outlet a valve a small box... I looked like Robin Williams in the movie RV
    lol. About 5 years later after remodels and living in this RV last summer I found a clean-out on the line that would of saved me from as said in the movie and as said by my wife "Ur not the one covered in fecal matter" lol. ALWAYS keep tanks closed and add water my 1st lesson in RV life

  33. We Were Camping and It Was a Beautiful “Fall” Night

    by Mike
    (Thunderbird Lake Oklahoma)

    Our first time out in our new 1996 Gulfstream Scenic Cruiser was going well the only problem that we had encountered was our hydraulic Leveling system decided to take a separate vacation.

    First night out and it was getting late, our dog Garm was in need of a walk to relieve himself. I was feeling energetic and thought that a walk down to the lake would be nice. As we left camp and got away from the lights the fact that the crescent moon and stars looked amazing against the black sky reminded me why I love the great outdoors.

    I found what looked like a good trail to lead us down to the lakes edge. As we entered the woods the smell of the forest was intoxicating.

    Proceeding down the steep trail it became evident that the tree canopy made it impossible for what little light the moon had to offer to shed any light on the trail. No problem I can see the glimmering lake just ahead and that’s when it happened. The next thing I know I was falling through the black of night like a falling star, nowhere as graceful or beautiful though. Thank goodness Garm was on a 25 foot retractable leash or I would have taken him with me.

    You would think that the fact that I stopped hearing his tags rattling together would have been a good sign that he had seen the drop off and was not moving forward anymore. I landed on my hands and knees in the sand but it was the rocks and tree roots along the cliff that tore me up.

    Wow what a rush, one minute enjoying a walk on a beautiful October night then bam watching your life pass before your eyes. The walk back took some time because the cliff ran about 300 yards or so in both directions, not to mention the fact that I was a little shaken up.
    When we got back the wife was glad that we made it back safely and wanted to know what took so long. I’m not sure what hurt worst the fall or her laughing and telling me that I should have taken a flashlight.

  34. How Not To Dump Your RV Holding Tanks

    by Bill

    We just bought a new (new to us) fifth wheel trailer 3 weeks ago. The day we bought it, the guy that was selling it to us, walked me through all of the stuff I should know, like, how to hook up to electricity, water, etc.

    He also talked us through how to dump the holding tanks. We could not actually dump the tanks because we were at his house and there was no sewer to hook up too. I did take notes on everything he told us to do.

    This past weekend me, my wife and our two boys took our trailer on our first camping trip. It was only for the weekend so we went to a campground that was 70 miles from us.
    Everything went well until we were preparing to leave. My wife reminded me that we needed to dump the tanks. So I went to my notes and hooked up the sewer hose to the trailer and put the other end into sewer hole at our campsite. I was sure that I hooked everything up right (at least I thought I did).

    I pulled both of the levers in the sewer compartment. When I pulled the levers I heard a big gushing sound as the sewer hose disconnected from the RV. I was standing right in front of it when the hose came off.

    Needless to say, I got soaked by the stuff that was coming out of the trailer. I tried to grab the valves and turn them off, but I slipped and fell down in all the muck.

    My wife and kids heard all of the commotion and came out of the trailer to see what happened. Instead of helping me, they just stood there staring at me. Then one of my sons started laughing at me, then my wife and other son joined in. I said something to them that I can't write here.

    I finally got the valves closed and some other campers that had seen what happened to me came over to help me clean up the mess I had made. They also sprayed me with water to clean me up the best they could. My wife and kids refused to help.

    My family would not let me in the trailer until I took a shower and changed at the campground restrooms. I have taken three showers since this happened and I still cannot get the smell off.

    I can tell you that I am not a happy camper right now, I don't want to go through this again.

    Sorry for the length of this, but I hope other people can learn from whatever mistakes I made. That is why I only put my first name here, I am too embarrassed to give my full name.

  35. Campground Bathroom Rule Number 1. Always Be The First To Flush

    by Richard

    I was in the restroom shaving when a guy in one of the toilet stalls called out. Is there anyone out there who could help me. I said I was here, what do you need. He said if I could go down to his camper and get clean pants and shorts from his wife. I asked what happened. He said the guy in the next stall flushed the toilet and his toilet backed up into his pants.


    a true story

  36. All alone in Paris In an RV

    by Dick Reed
    (Rockfield, KY)

    After over five years and fifty thousand plus miles we finally had it happen two nights ago. We were the only ones in the campground at Paris Landing State Park.

    We have stayed at hundreds of parks and knew this was going to eventually happen since we love camping ALL of the time. Glad to get that one checked off of the bucket list. Fate put that one in my bucket. I sure didn't want it in there, but as fate would have it, it wasn't that bad.

    As I think back at all of the places we have stayed, I can't imagine any of them I would have felt as comfortable in given that circumstance. Many of them would have had us back on the road looking for a rest stop or maybe even a Wal Mart parking lot.


    by Ron
    (Clarkston, WA)

    Friends of ours just purchased a new motorhome. On their first week they tried some dry camping. After three days they discovered that the holding tanks needed to be dumped.

    While driving down the road they came to a turnout and saw a sign that said, FINE FOR DUMPING HERE, so they pulled up along the ditch and proceeded to dump their tanks. While dumping a State Trooper pulled up and said," didn't you see that sign?"

    Our friends said," that is why we are dumping our tanks, it says FINE FOR DUMPING HERE."

  38. Our Cousin-In-Laws RV Top Bunk Woes

    by Emi
    (Southern California)

    We just traded up our Coachmen Freelander 21QB for a larger model. Well, the Coachmen had an overhead bunk that would sleep 2 adults. We were camping with our in-laws and in the evening, everyone chose their spots. My cousin-in-law Eddy chose the the overhead bunk. He didn't ask any questions, he laid out his sleeping bag and went promptly to sleep.

    In the AM I was curious as to how everyone had slept in our new RV and Eddy was the only one that didn't answer. Another night went by and again, on the 2nd morning I asked how everyone slept. Cousin Eddy didn't say anything.

    On our last night in our campsite, Cousin Eddy asked if I wouldn't mind if he slept in the Captain's chair versus the overhead bunk. I said sure but why? He said the dip in the middle prohibited him from turning around and he was too close to the ceiling.

    How could that be? He had the entire queen sized area to himself. I'd slept there many times, there was plenty of room. Well dear old Cousin Eddy hadn't pulled the insert forward that completed the bed and was sleeping on top of the insert in a C-shaped area of about 30 inches.

  39. My RV's Fountain of Poo

    by Jim
    (Fayetteville, NC)

    The company I work for paid for a temp tank that a portable john company came by each week to dump for me. They instructed me to leave the valves closed like you would when camping, and just open them before they came to dump the main tank outside. This worked wonderfully.
    After about 4 months of staying there I decided to flush out the black water tank. This seemed like a good idea, as my wife and I were basically living there and the camper was never moved to loosen the contents of the tank, and even with the blue chemical in the tank there was a smell starting to come around from time to time.
    I found the water hose hookup for flushing it out and connected the hose to it. At this time the tank was only half full by the lights that tell you their status. These lights had always seemed to work and I had no reason not to trust them now.
    I told my wife to stand at the light monitor and let me know when the last light came on so I could stop the water. She watched with great attention as I filled the black water tank with flush water on top of the existing dirty water that was in there. "Three lights on" she shouted after about two minutes. Then there was this noise that I can only describe as similar to a plastic bottle expanding in the sun.
    I asked her again how many lights were on, and she replied again that there were 3 only. Then she heard this noise and opened the door to the bathroom at the perfect time to watch the toilet valve reach its limit of pressure and a geiser that was 4" in diamter come bursting out and hitting the ceiling. She shouted at me to close the water, but I already knew what happened from the screaming she let out first.
    When I walked around the camper she was on her way out the door screaming and choking. What I saw can only be described as a muddy river with many canoes floating in it, the color and smell of which has no adequate definition. My macaw was on his stand watching things go by that he had never seen before.
    My wife is in the yard very unhappy and dry heaving, my macaw is dancing on his perch looking for some escape, and I am standing there helpless as I watched this river go from one end of the camper to the other, and reaching a depth of at least an inch before flowing out of the door.
    Reality sets in as I try to make my way inside to help my parrot and see the damage. This is when I see small pieces of toilet paper hanging from every cabinet handle, all the walls, and the towel racks in the bathroom. I see this nasty goo flowing into a heater duct beside the toilet, inside the cabinets in the bathroom, and all the cabinets and the beds in the living area as well.
    There were places this stuff reached that I didnt know they existed. For the next 4 hours I dumped a shop vac many times trying to get this flood under control and cleaned. As you clean the main floor, it keeps running out from the cabinets and every place you can think of.
    That night was spent with the vacuum, towels and mops. We opened the windows and door the whole time, but the smell was overwhelming. The carpet in the bedroom was even soaked. In the end, every piece of carpet had to be replaced, everything in the storage compartments removed and washed, the compartments scrubbed with bleach, and all the walls washed at least 3 times.
    A week later, the smell was starting to get weaker and I think we were winning the battle. This was a very expensive and time consuming mistake that I will never make again! For advice to everyone, never trust those little monitor lights and always flush with the dump valve open!

  40. Fears Turned into Laughter While RVing

    by Trisha Barnes
    (Huntsdale, MO)

    We are camphosts at a campground in Missouri. Often, my husband has to play "sheriff" during the middle of the night to run off trespassers who ignore the signs posted about the place being a private campground.

    One night we were awakened by the sound of a car headed up the road to the boat ramp. As he was getting ready to head up there, I reminded him to take his phone - you never know who you are going to meet in the middle of the night and I worry about him confronting an angry drunk who might take offense at being asked to leave.

    I feel back asleep but was awakened to the sound of POP, POP POP, POP, POP, POP! My instincts were right - they shot him! I flew out of the camper in a split second to be greeted by a beautiful fireworks display. (my husband had texted me to tell me everything was ok and to watch the fireworks, but I never heard the beep of the text message.)

    After my heart stopped racing and my breathing slowed down, I was able to smile a little and now can laugh about it.

  41. RV Dump Mistake

    by Mike
    (Olympia, WA)

    My wife and I had a new RV to us and were camped in an area with no sewer. We had water and power and used it more than we should have. I knew our gray water was getting full so I decided to dump some of it as we were leaving the next day or so.

    I dug a trench that would divert the water to the bushes as we were not in an area where you could dump gray or black water. Then I decided to pull the T handle out only a little bit to release the water slowly so as not to be noticed as doing something I knew was wrong.

    Only realizing I had pulled the wrong handle and could not push it back in fast enough. Gush it did and I was covered with crap head to toe. What a smell.

    Every one who came by our rig held their nose. Everyone kept their distance that weekend. Needless to say I labeled the T handles as poop and water.

  42. Sadie The Raccoon Hunting Scottish Terrier Terrorizes Drunk Camper

    by Bob Henry
    (Linden IN )

    Sadie our Scottish terrier is our camping buddy in our tiny 5 x 10 teardrop trailer.

    Fall camping and well into the night’s slumber she went berserk bouncing around on top of us and barking. Half awake and miffed I opened a door and she was off like a shot. A moment later as I became fully awake I evaluated this momentary act of stupidity. I have just let a black dog loose into a blacker night in an all but full state campground. Can anyone help me say DUH!

    Well short of wandering aimlessly and bellowing out her name at 2 AM all I could do was stoke up the fire in hopes she can see me by the fire light and just wait. I listened for the tinkle of her tags with restless anticipation. All I hear is a group of young men laughing punctuated with the occasional clink of a beer bottle being discarded. I hear a raucous explosion of laughter once and then back to their normal routine.

    Thankfully about 20 minutes later here comes the little monster appearing at my elbow from the dark scaring the bejeebers out of me. I scooped her up and tossed her in the trailer and we went back to sleep.

    The next morning the group we were camping with told tales of raided coolers and missing pots pans and bags of this and that left out. However the raiding raccoons left us untouched and I think it was because we had our "guard" dog.

    Well my tale doesn't end here. Mid morning a young man heading to the camp shower passes by and says "Hi Sadie" the wife and I looked puzzled but failed to react. It happened again with a second fellow passing through and we were both left scratching our heads.
    As a third fellow approached I was ready, as he greeted Sadie I asked "How do you guys know my dog?" He procedes to tell me the story of Kevin a bit drunk and slumbering in his camping recliner. I must digress a bit I met Kevin later and we are both big boys and to further clarify Sadie and I are often in the recliner together watching TV or napping. It seems she mistook Kevin for me and launched into his lap as he slept soundly in his camping recliner.
    The raucous laughter I had heard the night before was retold to me as Kevin woke up squealing like a little girl when this unknown dog (Sadie) jumped into his lap just before he overturned the recliner and came up spitting sod. It took me 4 minutes of tear-filled laughter to draw a breath. I could see it all happening in slow motion. It seems they had read her ID tag that we have on her collar with her name address and phone # and the mystery was solved.

  43. Our RV Snapped, Crackled And Almost Popped

    by Peggy

    We had gotten to the camp ground late and after hooking up the water to fill up the fresh water tank and power, we decided to eat a sandwich and talk. We kept hearing this popping noise. We thought it was our neighbor hitting the side of the motor home trying to scare us or for aggravation.

    After a couple of times of this we decided to investigate. We noticed as we got up that there was a huge hump in the floor of our RV. Our friend said I didn't notice that before. You see this was the first time we used our RV at the beginning of the summer and we were filling the reserve water tank and it was going in faster than the overflow could drain it out. The tank filled up and up and up but luckily it did not burst. We ran some of the water out and all was fine. The floor still pops though when we walk on it.

  44. This comment has been removed by the author.

  45. State Park Camp Hosts Have Some Good Advice For RVers

    by Mike
    (Bakersfield, Ca. USA)

    My wife and I recently retired and volunteered to be Camp Hosts at a State Park. We met some wonderful people from all over the world who stayed with us last summer. While most of the campers who stayed with us were responsible, there were an abnormally large percentage of campers who simply abused the park.

    This park was established over 50 years ago and by the Rangers account, this year was the heaviest use in the park's history. With State budgets being cut at an alarming rate, sadly the budgets for parks has been hit very hard. The Rangers at our park were just great and we were lucky to have their service.

    The Maintenance Staff we worked with were the most responsible and caring people I have ever worked with, they sincerely care about the State Park and its visitors. Our job was to assist the maintenance staff by cleaning sites after campers leave. My wife and I were responsible for cleaning over 130 sites.

    When campers refuse to pick up after themselves and leave their garbage in the fire pits rather than walk across the street to use the trash cans it made our job almost impossible.

    We will be back next year to give our 6 months to the Park System, and I hope people who use our parks take the time to be responsible campers and think of the people that are coming in to use their site next. It is just the responsible thing to do.

    Unless park users want the cost of using our State Park Campgrounds to continue to rise, Please Pitch in and Clean up after yourselves. It is the responsible thing to do.


  46. I'm in love with RVing!

    by Angie Lee
    (West Grove, PA)

    My husband and I are weekend warriors for the most part, due to finances and work etc... although we have made a trip to N.C. to visit our son and family on base housing at Camp LeJeune. We've also taken several trips to the mountains, to MD, and we often take a few weeks when we can in the summer at various campgrounds.

    I knew from our very first trip out that I was hooked! When my husband and I go out, we rekindle our love all over again after all these years. We sit and talk around the campfire, we hold hands. We just seem to get closer and we both enjoy our time together out in the open.

    We take all our meals outdoors and we hike and make friends wherever we go. And it's like a home, with all the creature comforts. We have everything we need. And we keep dry goods, a medical kit and clothes aboard so we're ready to go anytime, which is great for an emergency.

    It's so calm and peaceful and we're both relaxed. It's great to get away from the stress of work, the bills, the problems at home. And we both love the RV lifestyle so much that we often talk about full timing in the future.

    RVing is my favorite pasttime. We've even taken family and friends camping and the quality time with them away from tv and all the kaos back home is special. I can't imagine not being able to go out in our RV and get away. It's a part of my life.

  47. Getting All Shook Up On The Interstate 10 Washboard

    by Marilyn and Tim
    (Kissimmee, Fl)

    Well, before I forget (I'm old you all know), let me make sure that no one I know with an RV ever takes I-10 from Lafayette to Houston area. We found out after we got here, from some other RV'er, that they call that stretch of the road the "I-10 Washboard", boy are they right. We have NEVER been on a road like that before and I hope we never will again. We were on that horrible road for about 4 hours and it was just one huge pothole after another and of course we're towing our Equinox. We are also towing 3 bicycles on a bike rack on the back window of the car. Not my idea.

    OK, now here comes the next one of our many HAPPENINGS so far. We stopped at the Welcome Center at the Texas state line and while walking back to the car I notice something wrong with the backend of the car. We get up closer and guess what, yes, you're right, with all the stupid bouncing on the road the bike pedals had kept hitting the back window and yep, the whole window was busted out. Oh the joys of making new experiences!! We can't do anything it about now, so we continue on our merry way.

    We get to our next yucky campgroung and take the bikes off and Tim uses an entire roll of the ever wonderful, Duck Tape, and tapes up the whole back window. Of course by the time we got here in the famous town of Willis, TX it's after 6PM and everything is closed, I get on the net and begin trying to find any auto glass company in the area, I called probably 15 different places, leaving messages.

    Finally one guy called me back, he would try and find our window in the warehouses on Sun., nope apparently they decided not to open on Sun. after all. He's going to try again tomorrow and if he finds one in stock he'll come to the campground and replace it. If he can't find one, he has a friend of a friend of a friend in Austin and will try and set it up for us to get it replaced when we get there.

    I just love these "happenings", if nothing else they do breed patience.

    See you all at the next HAPPENING.

  48. We're Hooked On RVing

    by Jill
    (Stuart, Fla, USA)

    So, we're into our first trip over three months now. Honestly look at each other, non-verbally and smile knowing we're both in awe that RVing was so easy. Not handy, owned only two tools at the inception of the journey (now more!!!) and still managed to accrue 4,000 miles on our 36ft. Boxy Lady.

    Steve and I researched this lifestyle for 14 months before retirement made the dream come to fruition. Every weekend we trekked in the VW Beetle, to parts other than our hometown, searching for the RV Grail. Multi-state investigations led us right back to Florida where our Safari Cheetah, 2003, beckoned us to buy her. She'd been neglected...needed love, a new prom dress, her hair done and she'd be the beautiful lady she was meant to be.

    Left south Florida on July 6, 2010. We'll get home on Nov.6th... hesitate to call our stix house HOME, because we truly feel THIS is home.

    When you vacation, you're anxious to 'get home.' But this is NOT a's a lifestyle and this IS our home. All our belongings that we actually NEED are in the confines of 36 ft. We want for nothing...well, except for my electric mixer which is the ONLY item I forgot. (like to bake)

    Learning along the way. Three months out and yesterday learned you can heat the shower water electrically, not only with propane. Sheesh...

    Funny, Steve sometimes has to take Boxy Lady to the 'doctor.' She's going again tomorrow for a door hinge repair. The feeling when he pulls out of the campsite and leaves me and our canine kid sitting there, is something words can't communicate. You feel homeless. Abandoned. Lost.

    Can't say enough about RVing. Fun. Challenging. NEVER boring. Easier than expected. Not as costly as expected.

    If you're reading this, you're probably over 50. Time is finite. Play. Be adventuresome. Find the kid in you and do it. We did...with NO regrets

  49. We Love RVing Because Our First Camping Trip Was In A Tent

    by Stoney Meagher

    Why we love RVing? Let me tell you a story. I took my wife and kids tent camping once. We have a nice size tent and lots of things to pack. We got to our campground and was put right in the middle of a group of people that were camping together. I don’t think they even understood the word etiquette or what it meant.

    They did not follow the campground rules and were making our trip miserable. I went to the campground office and asked if we could move. The site they wanted to put us in was not any better. We went back to the office and pleaded with them to let us move. The best they could offer was a spot at the end of the campground in the overflow area. At this point I was ready to anything, even head home. They handed me a map and showed me where to go to see the area. The wife, I, and the kids headed off to see this over flow area.

    This area happened to be at the end of the campground past the RV section. The RV area was nice and quiet. The people were friendly. This looked like a place we wanted to be. But we did not have an RV.

    The overflow area was nice because no one was there. Our camping trip turned out to be nice in the end but we quickly realized that we were not tent kind of people. Shorty after this trip we bought our first travel trailer.

    We have upgraded twice now and have a very nice 5th wheel. We have met some great people in our travels and enjoy RVing very much.

  50. Why I Have Been RVing For 40 Years

    by Don & Kathy

    I love the life style and have done everything I can to stay in it. When I was younger and had to work, I sold and repaired RVs and traveled with the Snowbirds. Florida in the winter and Seattle in the summer. I was always able to find seasonal work and did make a good living doing it.

    I started when I was 20 and knew it was for me and later for me and my wife. Raising 2 kids slowed us down a little but we still managed to travel.

    Now I am retired in Southern California, well we still love it. I do RV repair on the side and it actually keeps me busier than I would like but what the heck, it's extra money.

    Now I am retired we no longer travel 8,000 miles a year hauling some 40' 5th Wheel and that makes it easier on this old man.

    I guess once it is your blood it stays there.

    The only sad part to me is all the different companys that made RVs and how they have gone broke, soooo sad

    Well, enjoy your RV and no matter what you travel in, just enjoy the happy times you spend with your family, I do!!!

    :) Don in So. Cal.

  51. I Love The Freedom Of RVing

    by Big Sky Chef
    (Prescott Az.)

    Pure and Simple...FREEDOM...What our Country is founded on!!

  52. RVing in WORLD FAMOUS Lafayette, LA.

    by Tim and Marilyn
    (Kissimmee, Fl)

    Well here we are in WORLD FAMOUS Lafayette, LA. Of course I had spent hours trying to find an RV Resort that was in any of the 4 or 5 organizations that we belong to, but that didn't happen. We ended up at Maxie's Campground, it was OK, very small, the worse part was that it was literally ON Highway 90, so we got to hear the wonderful music of semis, motorcycles and gobbs of cars all night long. We stayed for 3 nights because we really needed a rest, but I sure wish we had made that decision at a place that was a little nicer than this. Oh well, what difference does it make, we're together, our babies are doing great and literally everything adds to the experience of our journey.

    Oh, I almost forgot to tell you the latest THING that happened, boy what great memories. We've figured out that packing up and getting started every morning is really done on a list of prioities, you know, you do this, then this, then that, all in order. Get the car up on the dolly, tie it all down, put on the lights, disconnect the water line and the sewer, disconnect the electric cord (remember Tim forgot that one time) luckily we haven't made any mistake more than once, we're learning. Of course Tim always gets very dirty doing all that (I've always called him "Pigpen", he walks across a room and dirt flies up on him), anyway, at what point does he come in and take a shower.

    If we're lucky enough to find what they call a "pull-through" then it's much easier, he does all that and then takes his shower, we push the buttom to pull in the slides and off we go, BUT, if it's a back-in, then we have to pull in the slides, pull the RV out on the driveway and then pull the car up on the dolly, get down on the ground to hook up all the chains and everything. So how does he take a shower now, OK, he walks over to the showers,

    I pack him a little plastic bag, shampoo, shaver, clothes, etc. I thought I was being a good little girl, right, WRONG, I'm busy trying to get things packed and secured inside, when my cell phone rings, it's Tim, I guess I must have forgotten to give him a towel, he wants me to bring him one, it's pouring down rain, forget it, I hate getting wet, I'm made of sugar, I might melt. He says he could just try and dry off with paper towels, lots of them, I say OK that's good, do that, what difference does it make anyway he's going to get soaked walking back to the RV anyway.

    We did find, after driving around forever, just accidently happened on this beautiful huge old house, maybe 150 years old, it's a resturant called Nash's. This turned out to really be a find, the inside was gorgeous and the food was outstanding. We also found, just following signs, a restaurant called Randol's, it's famous for their crawfish. I've never eaten crawfish but Tim said it was great, so here we go. You can get a 3 lb or 5 lb order, Tim got 5 lbs and they bring it to you in a huge plastic tub, maybe 10 X 15, it's very red, I'd never even seen crawfish before, they are not pretty.

    The server taught Tim how to break them open, twist off their heads, peel them, kinda like peeling a shrimp, work and work at it and maybe you come away with a very small little bite. It took him over an hour to eat all of them, I couldn't believe it, what a mess, but he loved it and that's all that's important.

    I have to say we did not find Lafayette to be very exciting and are glad we're on our way again. We headed towards Willis, TX. We'll let you know what we find there.

  53. 100% RV Living

    by Sharon O'Maley
    (The USA)

    As we are pulling into Shady Pines, Jacksonville, TX

    We are completing our 2nd week of living 100% in a 28' Prowler 5th Wheel. We dropped our monthly bills in a land home of $850 to $330. Saturday we are starting our first WorkKamper job in Rusk KOA and we will be working about 20 hours a week for free full hook up. You just cannot beat that for it's simplicity.

    There are loads of WorkKamping jobs all over the United States. We will be in Rusk till the end of July and then we are under contract to WorkKamp at Swan Lake Wildlife Refuge from August thru October or maybe longer.

    You could not pay me to go back to a land home.

    Sharon and Billy

    Read more:

  54. Where's Eldo? On the Road RVing Full Time!

    by Jeannie
    (Currently Florida)

    We started "camping" on the weekends while we were both still working. We bought a 38 foot Damon Challenger and made weekend trips regularly. We both decided that we wanted to go out farther and farther from home and that we wanted to full time, we loved it so much.

    We both retired from our jobs, and one of us sold our house, the other house, a mobile home, is being rented. In the two years that we have been full timing, we upgraded to a 40' Tiffin, diesel pusher because it has the power needed to go over mountains, and much more space.

    We've been to both coasts, climbed mountains, kayaked rivers, run a zip line, ridden a bobsled, hiked the Grand Canyon, canoed rivers, and seen the most magnificent vistas within the continental United States.

    I'm a retired teacher, my fiance is a retired factory worker. You don't have to have a lot of money to travel on the road, even with diesel fuel prices. We average $20.00 a night lodging for full hookups (water, sewer, and electric) and many nights are below 15.00 a night with camping memberships like a Thousand Trails or Good Sam's and the senior park pass which is the greatest thing going!

    I wouldn't trade my lifestyle for anything! We see our family members who are all over the country more now, not less! This country is amazing and the best way to see it is through RVing.

    I thought I'd be lonely on the road, with just my fiance and me, but we've met the most wonderful people, the friendliest people! People who RV treasured friendships made on the road, and they work hard to stay in touch even after you've each gone your separate ways. We know that our paths will cross again some day.

    We write a blog so we will never forget our travels and all the fun, mundane, or crazy things that have happened to us.

  55. My RV is Now a Temporary Home, but a Lifestyle Goal

    by AKP
    (Walla Walla, WA)

    I say a Lifestyle Goal, because we aren't quite there yet. But I'm sure we will be. I am a 40 year old, who got sick, and am now in need of a Heart Transplant. To accomplish this, I needed to move nearer to the hospital in Spokane WA, but didn't want to move my wife and kids away from our established home, her job, and their school. Nor did we want to move away from our grand kids and adult kids.

    So it made sense for just me to go, but that would mean maintaining 2 homes for who knows how long. I found the answer in an RV. I had always wanted one, as I love traveling and camping, but never had one.

    So this situation provided me with 2 solutions. I bought an older RV, a 27 foot class C, that is set up just perfect for what we wanted, in good condition, and was priced right so to not have payments for it.

    After a few minor repairs and clean up from it's several years of storage, I fired it up, and drove it to my current Temporary Home. I've been living in it for nearly 3 months while waiting for a surgery call. My wife and teenage kids come up on weekends.

    The RV space rent is much more reasonable than an apartment, and I have a little "yard" and great, friendly RV neighbors! When the surgery is over, I can go home with no lease to break, or furniture to move,and we still will have our RV.

    We visit family out of state several times a year (normally), and look forward to traveling even farther once I am healed, back to work full time, and then eventually when we retire. I think once our kids are all out of the house, we will "live" as much as possible in our RV. But for now, it's providing me with a very comfortable, and reasonable place to live and eventually recover. And with future travel Goals. I Love It, and I wouldn't give up my RV.

    God bless the RV'er.

  56. Red River RV Resort

    by Marilyn and Tim

    We have met some really nice people along the way so far and to add to that while staying at Austin Lone Star RV Resort we were blessed to have made friends with Phil & Lynn. They are what is called "camp workers" meaning they travel and while stopped will offer to work at the resort. In their case they have decided that they liked the area so well they have agreed to stay a year. Together they take care of running the restaurant, including Phil doing all the cooking and believe me, it was great. They are really precious people.

    We left there on May 12th and stayed the two wonderful days in world famous Caddo Mills, which is where I lost my bracelet. We left there on Sun. morning, Mother's Day, and traveled to Red River RV Resort, just outside Gainesville, TX. This is a nice place, a little out in the middle of nowhere again, but OK. It's in a little town called Thackerville and as we were driving in I saw the town sign, we drove a little further and I said to Tim, I guess we haven't gotten to the town yet, he says, honey we just went through it. Ok now, little is little, but this place only had about 8 buildings and 4 were churches, now that's LITTLE. The up side is that there is plenty to see in the area of about 50 miles, so we will be taking little day trips.

    Mother's Day was great, my daughter Rhonda called about noon, it's always so good to hear her voice, and then my son, Don, called about 4. I got to talk to him and Clarissa and Curtis, my twin grandchildren, it was great. Tim got me two beautiful cards, he always gets me the most wonderful cards, and then took me to a great Italian Restaurant. The food was good, but the company was great.

    Now I know you're all waiting for the latest "happening" and well, this one is a little "different". We realized yesterday before we started running around that we needed some things from the store. Of course I made a list because neither one of us can remember if it's more than 2 things. But, you guessed it, we came home and of course forgot to stop at a store at all and the most important item on the list was toilet tissue. Tim leaves and tries the little store here in town (one of the eight buildings), nope they're closed. Oh well, we'll go to the store tomorrow, right, but for now we have NO toilet tissue.

    The place where we're staying has a number of out buildings, laundry, showers, rec hall, etc. Tim walks all the babies as soon as he gets up because they're all going crazy and on his way back from walking Brianna, the baby, of course they get walked "in order" of age, Pepper first, then Sushi and last Brianna. Well on the way back Tim realizes that he needs to visit the mens room, bad, and runs to the shower building only to find out that he needs a passcode to get in, wonderful, now he's running all over the place, but knows he can't make it back to the RV. Finally, in complete desperation, he tries the laundry room and yes, wonderful, it has a mens room too AND it's unlocked. This is great, there's nothing like starting your day off with a major happening already. Yep, our first job this morning is trying to find a store.

    Now yesterday we decided to hunt out a place called Turner Falls, turned out it was about 45 miles away, but was well worth the drive. Not a very big place, locally owned, but was very pretty and we found someone there to take our picture.

    I have always known that my oldest grandson Kyle was very special, he is one very neat kid, extremely smart and very talented, BUT, I didn't realize that he actually has a parkway named after him, though it really doesn't surprise me.

    I wanted to let all of you know how much we have enjoyed reading the messages that you've left for us and we're so glad that you're enjoying traveling with us because we are having a ball.

    Love to ALL of you,

    Tim & Marilyn

  57. I Love RVing Because I Am Restoring A Classic RV

    by Mr. Mark Rickman
    (Glenns Ferry, Id, USA)

    I've been RVing for many many years since I was young. The first RV my family owned was a Streamliner, and from there on I was hooked.

    I now own one of the first true land yachts. Its a 1978 Apollo 3300 1B. I'm restoring it as I go. Its all original, all the way down to the original welcome mat, which only says Apollo. It has the 440 Dodge and 727 transmission.

    She has the original two tone paint and hub caps to match and this baby is my love and I love the way people come up to me and say how nice she looks when I pull in.

    The blue book says $9,000 to $12,000 and she worth every cent and she has never let me down and never will. I live in her year round and would never trade.

    I wish more people would restore these great Icons of an era gone bye. Thats why I love Rving.


    Mr.Mark Rickman

  58. PART 1 OF
    Our RV Trip From New York

    by Marilyn and Tim
    (Kissimmee, FL)

    Our RV Trip From New York

    by Marilyn and Tim
    (Kissimmee, FL)
    (This story was submitted on our Why Do You Love RVing Page)

    Hello Everybody,

    Well we are finally out of New York, and not a day too soon. I did OK for the first week, then Tim had 3 days off and that was great, then the second week started and by Thurs. I thought I was going to lose my mind, by Fri., I was sure of it.

    For somebody like me that has hardly ever been without a car since I was 16, being out in the middle of the Catskill Mountains, no car, no one to talk to, and getting Tim's company only about 2 hours an evening, I would be saying it very mild if I said I was more than a little nuts. One good thing though, I think I totally understand DOG talk now, me and the pups have had some great conversations. Would you believe of all the places for Tim to interpret, his job was at the Academy of Pet Grooming, and he learned all kinds of stuff.

    We stopped and stayed the night at our friend Joe's house, got up early and intended leaving right away, but, overnight Murphy's Law had kicked in, the left slide would not come in AT ALL, not a sound. Tim and Joe got under the RV and with huge wrenches they tried to bring it in by hand, but that only worked for awhile before they would be stuck. Tim had already tried switching out the mother boards but that didn't work, tried replacing the fuses, that didn't work either. Finally after trying to do it by hand, he went back and switched the boards again and woooohoooo, all of a sudden it starts coming in, we have no idea why, but who cares.

    About mid afternoon we realize we are not going to be able to make it to the next resort before the office closes, it's going to be pitch black outside, AND we would have to unhook the car, so we decide forget it, we'll just drive until we can find something else. The something else never did happen and all of a sudden I see this large shopping center, now staying overnight in a parking lot is definitely not my first choice, but as usual we just go with the flow. So we had a wonderful night in a great RESORT called Food Lion Super Market

    Anyway, that's done and we arrived on Mon. at Camp Hatteras in Waves, NC, the wonderful, glorious Outer Banks, that's a whole string of islands off the coast of NC. We will be here a whole week and plan on doing a whole bunch of nothing, or at least nothing we don't want to do.

  59. PART 2 of
    Our RV Trip From New York

    by Marilyn and Tim
    (Kissimmee, FL)

    Even though we were here on our way up the coast and stayed here 3 days, we really didn't have the time to investigate the area as only Tim and I can. We love running down dirt roads and finding all the out of the way places. The last time we were here we caught the ferry at Cedar Island over to Ocracoke Island then just drove straight to the next ferry to get on Hatteras Island, so we didn't actually get to see anything on Ocracoke Island and decided we would make a day trip out of it. We took the pups with us, caught the free ferry and began our normal hunt for anything unusual.

    We had a great time, of course went to see the Lighthouse, by now you know we just love lighthouses. After stopping at the Visitor's Center we decided we just had to go drive down Howard St., it's still a very narrow dirt road and the houses on it are still the way people lived a hundred years ago. We also found the house where the infamous Blackbeard pirate spent time, just in case you're ever on Jeopardy, Blackbeard's real name was Edward Teach.

    Over 500 hundreds years ago, hundreds of wild mustangs roamed all these islands, having made it to shore from many ship wrecks. This area didn't even have electricity until 1968; no telephone service until 1974 and the first paved road didn't happen until 1984. The horses were allowed to roam free, actually walking through the automatic doors at grocery stores. After the area began developing, you know with paved roads and all, 17 horses were hit and killed in just 4 years. The locals established the Corolla Wild Horse Fund in 1989 and that began the protecting of these wonderful horses, the Spanish Mustang is on the Endangered Breed List.

    Now don't forget to stay tuned, there's always another adventure just around the corner.

    Love to you ALL,

    Tim and Marilyn

  60. New RVers Love RVing So Much That They Now Blog About It

    by Jill
    (Stuart, Fla, USA)

    Jill and Steve, RV newbees

    Two inexperienced "old people," we bought our first RV, a 36' Safari Cheetah in June of this year. Headed out for a 4 month trip. Today we are three months and a week into it.

    Impossible to pen the experiences...from the glory of the Atlantic to the autumn earthtones of the Vermont forests, this has been the journey of a lifetime.

    Not handy. Not mechanical. Never camped...but we had a dream, worked for it, saved for it, and lived it.

    Lots of mistakes, some costly. Lots of laughter, sometimes in the echo of The Green Mountains. Creeks, gorges, velvet skies with twinkling stars beckoning our acknowledgment...lobster dinners in Maine, Atlantic City casinos, Massachusetts museums, and simply reading, chatting and praying under the awning of your own motorhome.

    Don't wait. Check out the Two Tools and a Dream Blog. RVing is better than a strawberry sundae...with whipped cream...and a cherry.

    Jill and Steve

  61. We Love RVing Because it Just Gives Us That Relaxed Feeling

    by John
    (Santa Clarita, California)

    Even though we are both retired, life has a way of pushing its little stresses upon us. When we get to the rig and open the door, those stresses just seem to go away.

    Our RV has become a link to freedom and adventure and we look forward to our trips. We are both so relaxed in the RV we've begun to talk about full-timing it for a while. Not to totally give up a home base, but to downsize the house and spend the majority of our time travelling in the rig.

    Not only does the RV give us the chance to visit wonderful places, it also has allowed us to meet fantastic people! We have met such friendly and helpful folks and have left campgrounds with email addresses, home addresses and invitations to visit that are truly sincere.

    Yep, put together the people and places we can reach in our rig and anyone can see the advantages to travelling in an RV.

  62. I Love RVing Because Of The Excuses It Gives Me

    by Jason
    (Atlanta, GA)

    The reason I love RVing has nothing to do with the actual RV itself, as I am sure most of you would agree.

    The RV is an excuse, whether we realize it or not. It is an excuse to get away from the daily hassles of life, to forget work, to create lasting memories with my children and to see the natural beauty that this world has to offer.

    I chose not to attach a picture of my RV, because as I stated earlier, it is merely an excuse. The picture above is why I love RVing.

    God Bless!

  63. Stuffed Bacon and Cheese Zucchini

    Serves 6


    2 pounds zucchini, halved
    2 cups dry bread crumbs
    4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
    6 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese
    1/4 cup minced red onion
    1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
    1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
    2 eggs, beaten
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 tablespoons butter
    1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste


    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

    2. Add zucchini in a large pot of boiling water. Cook until tender, 12-15 minutes, drain.

    3. Scoop out the flesh of the zucchini, making a hollow log.

    4. In a medium bowl combined zucchini flesh, bread crumbs, onion, Cheddar cheese, parsley, salt, and egg.

    5. Fill zucchini logs with mixture. Dot tops with butter and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, seasonings and olive oil.

    6. Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes. Remove.

    7. Top with cooked bacon and the other half of Parmesan cheese.

  64. Italian Sausage, Pasta and Rice

    by Barb
    (Atlanta, Georgia)

    Serves 4-6


    1 1/2 cups cooked rice
    1 16oz. package multicolor Rotini pasta, cooked
    6 large sweet Italian sausages
    4 cloves garlic, chopped
    1 each red and green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
    2 large red onions, chopped
    1 15 oz can stewed tomatoes
    1 small can tomato sauce
    1 teaspoon taco seasoning
    1/2 teaspoon each basil and oregano
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    2 tablespoons olive oil


    1. Cut the sausage into 1 inch chunks.

    2. In a large skillet sauté sausage chunks in olive oil, medium high heat with chopped onions until lightly browned.

    3. To the skillet add garlic, peppers and seasonings, cover. Simmer the sausages with lid on until almost cooked through, 7-10 minutes.

    4. Remove the lid and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.
    Stir in the cooked rice, pasta and sauce. Season to taste and serve.

  65. Grilled Salmon Camping Recipe

    by Cyndee
    (Liberty Hill, TX)


    Salmon filets 4


    Easy Marinade:
    Orange juice 3/4 c
    powered ginger 1TBS
    soy sauce 1 TBS

    Cooking Instructions

    Marinate salmon in refrigerator in OJ and ginger
    (2 hours or overnight)

    --add 1 TBS reduced sodium soy sauce just prior to grilling

    Grill salmon, discard marinade

    Serve with steamed rice and veggies

    **fresh ginger can be frozen and grated without removing skin**

    Marinade great with Mahi Mahi filets

  66. Marshmallow S'more Sandwich Cookies

    by Susan
    (Yuma, Az.)

    Our kids and grandkids love this version of s’mores. Quick and easy. Summer day or Rainy day the kids always have a great time making these!

    Serves 6


    1 dozen chocolate and white chocolate chip cookies

    6 large marshmallows


    1. Heat the marshmallow over an open flame until it begins to brown and melt.

    2. Sandwich the melted marshmallow between the chocolate chip cookies, and press on the cookie to help the melted marshmallow cover the inside of the cookie sandwich. Let cool to touch. Enjoy!

  67. Skillet Italian Camping Recipe

    by Cyndee
    (Liberty Hill Texas)


    Italian Sausage
    Fresh or Canned Stewed Tomatoes
    Can Northern Beans

    Cooking Instructions

    Brown bulk Italian sausage in large pan
    add fresh tomatoes or canned stewed tomatoes
    Add rinsed canned northern beans
    (If using fresh tomatoes add 1/2 - 1 c H2O)
    Cook until sausage is done

    add escarole, kale, collard or greens of choice


    add onion, pepper, garlic or other herbs of choice

  68. New Mexico Green Chile Pork Stew (Crock Pot)

    by Anonymous


    3-4 pork loins, cut in bite size pieces
    1 medium sweet onion, chopped
    4 small to medium potatoes, bite size pieces
    4-6 New Mexico Anaheim peppers (roasted and peeled)bite size pieces
    1/4-1/2 tsp. Cumin
    1-2 tsp garlic
    Sea Salt and Pepper to taste
    1/2 cup water if needed

    Cooking Instructions

    Chop onions, potatoes and chile put in 4 qt crock pot. Put spices on top of vegis, chop pork loins and put on top of vegis.

    Turn crock on low and cook 6-8 hours.
    The smell will make your neighbors jealous.

  69. Mocha Coffee Cooler

    by Bret
    (Carson City, NV.)

    Mocha Coffee Cooler

    Serves 4


    2 cups of your favorite brewed coffee, cooled

    1 1/2 cups of nonfat dry milk powder

    1/3 cup dark chocolate syrup

    2 cups ice cubes

    dash ground cinnamon

    whipped cream


    Place ingredients into a blender. Add lid and mix until smooth.

    Pour into cups.

    Top with whipped cream, or marshmallows. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon, or cocoa powder, chocolate slivers, etc.

  70. Stuffed Burgers

    by Liz
    (Denver, Co.)

    Stuffed Burgers

    Serves 5


    2 lbs. ground sirlon
    1 medium onion, diced
    1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
    4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
    1/2 cup shredded cheese, sharp cheddar, swiss, blue cheese, etc.
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    1 teaspoon garlic powder
    salt and pepper to taste
    5 buns or hamburger rolls


    Preheat grill to medium high heat. Lightly oil grill grate.

    Saute' onions and mushroons in olive oil. Add cooked bacon and cheese. Set aside.

    Place ground sirlon, Worcertershire sauce, garlic powder, salt and pepper into a large bowl. Mix and shape
    into 10 thin patties.

    Place a single thin patty onto a plate, and add 1 heaping tablespoon of the sauted mixture into the center of the patty. Now add another thin patty on top of filling and center with the other patty. Press edges of the patty closed, to form one burger patty.

    Place on grill and cook 4-6 minutes per side.

  71. Wishing for a new RV but can’t afford it?

    By Carol Ann Quibell

    Then why not buy a good used RV and refurbish it to suit yourself?

    Searching for a new RV does not have to mean buying new ~ it could mean buying something that is “used” but new to you. Tramping through RV Dealership lots admiring the newest and fanciest models can make you drool in envy but if you can’t afford it, there is no reason to be discouraged. Many of us are in the same position and by using common sense and a bit of elbow grease there is no reason why we wouldn’t be happy with a used RV in good condition.
    Sometimes when looking at second-hand RVs it can be upsetting because of the condition some of them are in. The shininess is gone, the upholstery is frayed, the floor is worn and the window coverings shout “old”. These are all cosmetic and can easily be fixed.
    You could be saving money. By purchasing a used RV at a lower price and fixing it up yourself you are probably saving a great deal of money. The secret is to first find a good solid RV that has been taken care of but just needs some TLC. Imagine the feeling of satisfaction knowing you were the one to make this used RV into something shiny and new again.
    What to look for mechanically in a used motorized RV
    First and foremost have it checked over by a reputable mechanic who is familiar with RVs. If the current owner won’t allow it, then walk away. There’s always another one down the road.
    Ask to see the service records and follow-up with the person or business that did the work. These records are a good indication of how well the unit has been cared for.
    When was the last tune-up and oil change done?
    The running gear needs to be solid – this means the motor, transmission and rear end need to be in good running order. No leaks or know what is causing it.
    The odometer reading – it’s better to have a unit with a low kilometer reading but remember it may not be accurate.
    Have the exhaust system and brakes checked and a compression test done.
    Ensure the structure of the RV is solid with no water damage.
    Check over the appliances or have them checked by a certified RV Tech ~ looking for leaks in the water lines, gas lines and frayed electrical wires.
    Is the furnace, refrigerator, stove, hot water tank and any other appliances or fixtures working satisfactorily?
    By purchasing from a dealer the gas lines have to be certified but when buying privately you are purchasing “as is”.
    Upholstery covers, cushions, window coverings and flooring can all be changed so don’t be overly critical of cosmetic issues.
    Don’t be afraid to ask questions.

    Obviously a used RV is not going to be perfect but by doing a bit of homework and due diligence you will know what it will cost to bring it up to a suitable and safe standard. It will be almost impossible to purchase a second-hand RV without spending some money to make it better. Budget for it and be prepared so you won’t be hit with any nasty surprises. By renewing a good used RV will add many years of use to it for your own enjoyment.
    Happy travels,
    Carol Ann
    About The Author
    Carol Ann Quibell, a freelance writer and columnist who has traveled extensively throughout Canada, USA, Mexico and Central America. More information on RVing can be found at and

  72. Italian Spicy Sub

    by Jan
    (Hot Springs, AR)

    Italian Spicy Sub
    Slow Cooker

    Serves 8


    2 lbs. Round steak, thinly sliced into strips
    1 lb. ground Italian sausage
    1 each, green and red bell pepper, thinly sliced
    1 medium onion, thinly sliced
    8 oz. Sliced mushrooms
    1 26 ½ oz. Jar or can spaghetti sauce
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
    1 teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste
    1 loaf Italian bread
    8 slices provolone cheese

  73. Grilled Pumpkin

    by Stella
    (Sioux Falls, SD)

    Grilled Pumpkin

    Serves 6-8


    2 ½ pounds fresh pumpkin
    2 ½ tablespoons olive oil
    2 ½ tablespoons balsamic vinegar
    ½ teaspoon cinnamon powder
    Salt and pepper to taste


    1. Pre heat grill to medium heat. Lightly oil grill grate.

    2. Wash and clean out the seeds and fibers of the pumpkin.

    3. Peel the pumpkin and cut into 1 1/2 -2 inch squares.

    4. Place the pumpkin into a bowl, and add all the other ingredients. Mix well.

    5. Place pumpkin on a medium heat grill, for 7-10 minutes per side.

    6. Remove pumpkin squares from grill when soft.

    7. Serve warm and top with melted butter.

    Also try different kinds of marinades and vinaigrettes. Try cinnamon sugar on top of the warm grilled pumpkin.

  74. Orange Chicken

    by Will
    (Ocean Park, Wa.)
    Orange Chicken
    (Slow Cooker)

    Serves 8


    8 boneless skinless chicken breasts
    1 medium onion, thinly sliced
    1 bell pepper, thinly sliced
    1 1/2 cups carrots, sliced
    8 oz. orange marmalade
    8 oz. tomato sauce
    4 oz. water
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    1 tablespoon brown sugar
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    1 teaspoon cumin
    1 teaspoon pepper
    1 teaspoon garlic powder
    1 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


    1. Mix together the orange marmalade, tomato sauce, water, Worcestershire sauce, and dry ingredients.

    2. Place the slow cooker on high heat.

    3. Add olive oil in bottom of slow cooker, and add the chicken, the liquid mixture, and top with the remaining ingredients.

    4. Add the lid to the slow cooker and cook on High for 1 hour.

    5. Reduce the heat to Low, and continue cooking for 3 1/2 more hours.

    For spicy hotter flavored orange chicken add hot sauce or chili powder, or more cumin.

    Serve with your favorite side dishes.

  75. Chicken Nugget Kabobs

    by Helen
    (Ft. Myers, Florida)

    Chicken Nugget Kabobs

    Serves 4-6


    24 chicken nuggets (from 13.5-oz package of frozen breaded cooked chicken nuggets)
    10 oz button mushrooms, cut in half
    2 cans pineapple chunks, reserve juice
    1/2 med red onion, cut into fourths
    1/2 cup honey
    1/4 pineapple juice from can
    12 skewers, soak wooden skewers in water, 20 minutes
    oil for grill


    1. Heat grill to medium heat. Lightly oil grill grate.

    2. Onto the skewers, alternately thread pineapple, mushrooms halves, chicken nuggets and onion pieces. Two chicken nuggets per skewer.

    3. Place chicken nugget kabobs on grill. Cover grill, cook over medium heat 4-5 minutes.

    4. Turn chicken nugget kabobs once, and continue cooking 4-5 more minutes until thoroughly heated.

    5. Remove from grill. Serve with honey for dipping.

    Honey dipping sauce:

    Place honey and pineapple juice in a small serving bowl.
    Mix well and serve. (you can sprinkle with cinnamon, or add a few drops of your favorite mustard as well).

  76. Broccoli Florets and Tomato Pasta

    by Terry
    (Lansing, Mi.)

    Broccoli Florets and Tomato Pasta

    Serves 6-8


    16 oz frozen broccoli florets
    2 14.5 oz cans stewed diced tomatoes
    32 oz pasta, penne rigate, or farfalle bow ties, rigatoni, fusilli
    1 can cream mushroom soup, do not add any liquid
    3-4 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
    1/2 medium onion, chopped
    6 oz sliced mushrooms
    6 oz cream cheese
    2 tablespoons butter
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    1 teaspoon sugar
    Salt and pepper to taste
    Parmesan cheese


    1. Cook broccoli and pasta per package instruction. Set aside.

    2 Using a large pan Sautee’ onions and mushrooms in olive oil. Add in stewed tomatoes, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder and salt and pepper. Continue cooking over medium heat 4-5 minutes.

    3 Add cream mushroom soup, cream cheese and continue cooking 3-4 minutes until bubbly.

    4. Stir in broccoli and lightly toss in pasta and butter. Remove from heat.

    5. Place on a large serving dish and top with parmesan cheese and crumbled bacon.

  77. Apple and Raisin Crisp

    by Anita
    (Victoria, BC)

    Apple and Raisin Crisp

    Slow-Cooker 3 1/2 - 4 Hours


    6 cups apples, cored, peeled and thinly sliced
    2 cups cinnamon raisin bread crumbs, softened
    1 cup granulated sugar
    1 cup brown sugar
    1/2 cup butter, melted
    1/4 cup honey, set aside
    1 tablespoon flour
    1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
    1/2 lemon, juice and zest
    Dash of salt


    1. In a large mixing bowl combine apples, granulated sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, and lemon juice and zest.

    2. In a second bowl, combine bread crumbs, butter, and brown sugar.

    3. In the slow cooker, layer one third of the bread crumb mixture, then one-third of the apple mixture. Repeat.

    4. Finish with the final layer of bread crumbs on top, and sprinkle with a little brown sugar, cinnamon and drizzle with honey.

    5. Cook on High for 3 1/2-4 hours, or until bubbly.

  78. Grilled Flank Steak

    by Joe
    (Midland, Ga.)

    Grilled Flank Steak

    Serves 6-8


    2 lbs. flank steak, trimmed
    2 tablespoons zesty Italian dressing
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    1 teaspoon garlic powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon pepper

    1. In a zip-lock bag place steak and all ingredients. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Remove.

    2. Prepare grill medium high heat. Lightly oil grill grate.

    3. Place steak on grill, 8-9 minutes per side. Remove.

    4. Place steak on a cutting board, and cover loosely with foil. Let rest for 10 minutes.

    5. Cut steak diagonally across the grain into thin slices. Place grilled thinly sliced flank steak over rice, or on a roll, etc.

  79. Fried Yams

    by Lynn
    (Lodi, Ca)

    Fried Yams


    3 large yams, scrub clean with skin-on
    Canola oil, for frying
    Salt and pepper to taste


    1/2 cup maple syrup
    1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground taco seasoning
    Whisk together in a small bowl and set aside.


    1. Quicker method: Poke yams with a fork 2-3 times and place yams in microwave 5-6 minutes. Remove.

    2. In a heavy pot for frying or a deep-fryer, heat enough oil to reach halfway from the bottom of the pot, to 350 degrees F.

    3. Cut yams in half and then cut each half into 6 1-inch thick wedges.

    4. When oil is ready, reduce heat to medium-high and carefully place half the yam wedges in the oil. Cook turning occasionally to brown on all sides, about 9-12 minutes, or half the cooking time if micro waved. Remove and place on a paper towel to drain. Repeat.

    Sprinkle the fries with salt and pepper, and now the yams are ready for the dipping sauce.

  80. Turkey Grilled Fajita Burgers

    by Ruth
    (San Diego, Ca)

    Turkey Grilled Fajita Burgers

    6 servings


    1 1/2 lbs. ground turkey
    1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs
    1/2 cup green and red bell peppers, finely chopped
    1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
    1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
    3 oz. tomatillo salsa
    1/4 avocado, chopped
    1 egg
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
    1/2 tablespoon fajita seasoning, divided
    1 tablespoon tomato paste
    Salt and pepper to taste
    6 onion hamburger buns, grilled


    1. Preheat grill to medium high heat. Lightly oil grill grate.

    2. Mix chopped avocado, cilantro and tomatillo salsa, set aside.

    3. In a large nonstick skillet add 1 tablespoon olive oil and cook over medium-high heat, onions, bell peppers, sauté 4-5 minutes, or until tender. Stir in salt and pepper and 1/2 of fajita seasoning. Let cool.

    4. Add breadcrumbs, onion mixture, remaining fajita seasoning, tomato paste, turkey, Worcestershire sauce and egg. Mix in a large bowl. Using damp hands, divide turkey mixture into 6 equal portions, shaping each patty 3/4-inches thick.

    5. Place on grill and cook 4-5 minutes per side or until done. Remove.

    6. Grill onion hamburger buns 1-2 minutes. Remove. Place the turkey patty on bottom half of the bun. Top with 1 1/2 tablespoons salsa mixture, and top with remaining halve of bun. Repeat.

  81. Peach Cobbler

    by Sarah
    (Spring Hill, Fl)

    Peach Cobbler

    Yield: 8-10 servings


    4 1/2 cups fresh peach slices
    1 cup sugar: + 1 cup sugar later
    1 cup all purpose flour
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    1 cup milk
    1/2 cup butter
    1 tablespoon lemon juice
    Dash of cinnamon


    1. Combine 1 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt; flour add milk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened.

    2. Melt butter and place in a 13 x 9 inch baking dish. Pour in the moistened mixture, do not stir ingredients.

    3. Add peaches, lemon juice and 1 cup sugar to a large pan and bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

    4. Pour the peach mixture over the other ingredients, do not stir. Sprinkle cinnamon over the top.

    5. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until cobbler is golden brown. Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream.

  82. Meatball Sliders

    by Donna
    (Lake Charles, La.)

    Meatball Sliders

    Serves 6


    8 oz. ground turkey
    8 oz. ground sirloin
    8 oz. sweet turkey Italian sausage
    1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
    1 egg
    1 teaspoon dried oregano
    1 teaspoon dried basil
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste
    2 medium onions, sliced 1/2 thick
    6 slices mozzarella cheese, cut in half
    12 mini rolls, sliced in half
    1 1/2 cups cheesy garlic tomato sauce, cooked


    1. Prepare grill to medium high heat, and lightly oil grill grate.

    2. Remove casings from sausage. Combine sausage, ground turkey and sirloin, oregano, basil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, egg and bread crumbs. Mix.

    3. Divide the mixture into 12 equal portions, shaping each into a 2-3 inch meat ball. Flatten the meat ball into a 1/2 inch thick patty.

    4. Place patties on a grill for 4 minutes. Then add the onions slices to lightly oiled grill grate. Turn patties and grill 3 minutes more, and flip the onions. Add cheese grill until melted 2-3 minutes. Remove sliders and sliced onions. Let sliders rest 4-5 minutes.

    5. Place sliders on mini rolls and top with heated sauce and grilled onions.

  83. Taco Salad

    by Gayle
    (Greenwood, In.)

    Taco Salad

    Serves 6

    This taco salad is quick, easy and fun to make. You can change the tortilla chips to cheesy, hot and spicy, etc. and make a different taco salad every time!


    1 lb. ground turkey
    1 can turkey chili with beans
    12 oz. peas, fresh or frozen, cooked
    1 1/2 cups green, red and yellow bell peppers, chopped
    6 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
    1 1/2 cups tomatoes, chopped
    1 1/2 cups salsa, fresh or bottled
    1/2 can black olives, thinly sliced
    1/4 cup green onions, chopped
    1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
    1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
    1 1/2 cups baked tortilla chips, crumbled
    1/4 teaspoon taco seasoning
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste


    1. Cook turkey and bell pepper in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, and add seasonings. Cook until turkey is browned, and crumble the turkey while cooking.

    2. Add the can of turkey chili and salsa. Bring to a boil.

    3. In a large bowl place lettuce, tomatoes, green onions, cilantro, cooked peas, black olives and salsa, lightly toss.

    4. Place equal amounts of salad mixture on plates. Top with turkey mixture and sprinkle with cheese and tortilla chips.

  84. Mac Ham & Cheese

    by Debra
    (Sun City, Az.)

    Mac Ham & Cheese

    Serves 6-8


    10 oz. elbow macaroni
    6 slices ham, diced
    4 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
    2 cups whole milk
    1 can evaporated milk
    2 eggs, beaten
    2 tablespoons butter
    1 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon pepper
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    6 slices American cheese


    1. Cook pasta per package directions. Drain.

    2. Lightly butter inside of slow cooker. Mix the pasta, evaporated milk, milk, 3 cups cheese, ham and eggs, and seasonings.

    3. Sprinkle on the remaining cheddar cheese and arrange American cheese slices on top.

    4. Cook, covered, on low for 3 1/2 hours. Do not stir ingredients or remove lid while cooking.

  85. Cherry Tomato Salad

    by Tami

    Cherry Tomato Salad

    Serves 6


    3 cups cherry tomatoes, red, orange and yellow,
    cut in half
    1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
    3 green onions, thinly sliced
    3 garlic cloves, minced
    2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    1/4 cup zesty Italian dressing
    1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
    1/4 cup parmesan cheese
    1 tablespoon brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper


    1. Combine cherry tomatoes, green bell pepper, green onions, and minced garlic in a large bowl.

    2. Combine vinegar, olive oil and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, and stir until blended.

    3. Pour vinegar dressing mixture over tomatoes, tossing lightly to coat. Chill 1-2 hours.

    4. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and serve.

  86. Sloppy Joe

    by Sara
    (Orlando, Florida)

    Sloppy Joe

    Serves 6


    1 lb. ground beef
    1/2 lb. ground turkey
    6 slices cheddar cheese
    1/2 cup ketchup
    6 oz tomato sauce
    1/2 medium onion chopped
    1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    1 tablespoon brown sugar
    1 teaspoon prepared mustard
    1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste
    6 onion rolls, split


    1. In a large saucepan, cook ground beef and turkey over medium heat until done and no longer pink, drain.

    2. Stir in the ketchup, tomato sauce, bell pepper, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic powder, onion, and salt and pepper.

    3. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes. Serve on buns.

    4. Place a slice of cheddar cheese on open face onion roll, and top with Sloppy Joe mixture.

  87. Grilled Pork Turkey Burgers

    by Alice

    Grilled Pork Turkey Burgers

    Serves 8


    1 lb. ground pork
    1 lb. ground turkey
    8 slices bacon (even more if you are a real Bacon Lover)
    1 Granny Smith apple - peeled, cored and finely chopped
    1 sweet onion, finely chopped
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
    1 egg, plus 1 teaspoon milk scrambled
    1 20 oz. can sliced pineapple, drained-reserve juice
    8 hamburger buns
    1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and pepper


    1. Preheat grill medium-high heat. Lightly oil grill grate.

    2. In a large bowl, mix together ground pork, ground turkey, apple, onion, garlic, teriyaki sauce, and egg mixture. If mixture is too dry, add some pineapple juice.

    3. Form into eight patties. Grill pork and turkey burgers for 5-6 minutes per side, or until done.

    4. Cook bacon until crispy and cut in half.

    5. Toast buns on grill, 1-2 minutes. Add burgers to the buns and topped with pineapple slices and cooked bacon.

  88. Grilled Sweet Potato Packets

    by Ellen
    (Fort Worth, Texas)

    Grilled Sweet Potato Packets

    Serves 4-6


    3 large sweet potatoes, sliced and peeled
    2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
    1/2 cup raisins
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/2 cup butter

    Foil, 4-6 squares of thick aluminum foil, 2
    Thicknesses each of regular foil
    1 teaspoon butter, per foil square


    1. Preheat grill medium high. Lightly oil grill grate.

    2. In a bowl add sweet potatoes, apple slices and raisins. Add the cinnamon and sugar and mix.

    3. Divide the mixture into 4-6 equal portions, and place on aluminum foil squares (Double thickness of regular foil)

    4. Top each with butter. Tightly seal the foil to make a pouch.

    5. Place foil packets on the grill, and cook 25-35 minutes, turning every 5 to 8 minutes, until sweet potatoes, apples and raisins are tender. Serve.

  89. Stir Fry Pork

    by (Eugen, Or.)

    Stir-Fry Pork

    Serves 4


    3 cups rice, cooked
    1 pound thinly sliced lean pork
    1 green and red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
    2 green onions, chopped
    1/2 inch piece fresh ginger root, chopped
    2 tablespoons vegetable oil
    1 tablespoon cooking rice wine
    1 teaspoon soy sauce
    1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
    1/2 teaspoon sugar
    1/2 teaspoon salt


    1. In a large skillet heat oil to medium-high heat. Add ginger to hot oil cook 1-2 minutes.

    2. Add pork, soy sauce and sugar. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

    3. Stir in the rice wine, sesame oil and green onions. Simmer until the pork is tender.

    4. Heat rice and place on a serving dish. Top with stir-fry.

  90. Cheesy Bacon Tater Tots

    by Kelly
    (South Carolina)

    Cheesy Bacon Tater Tots

    Serves 6-8


    1 lb. lean ground beef
    5 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
    1 16oz. bag tater tots
    1/2 med. onion, diced
    10oz. sharp cheddar, shredded
    1 can cream of mushroom soup
    4 oz butter
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste
    Cooking oil


    1. In a skillet brown ground beef and onions. Drain fat and set aside.

    2. Cook tater tots per package instructions, or, place tater tots on microwave safe dish and cook for 90 seconds.

    3. In a skillet heat oil to medium high, add tater tots and fry until golden brown 2-4 minutes. Let drain on paper towel.

    4. Cook cream of mushroom soup, add butter, olive oil, ground beef, onions, and seasonings. Stir and add tater tots.

    5. Mix ingredients and place on a serving dish. Sprinkle with shredded cheese and top with bacon.

  91. Corned Beef and Cabbage (Crock-Pot)

    by Gary
    (Albany, New York)

    Corned Beef and Cabbage

    Serves 4-6

    6-8 cups cooked rice
    4 lbs. corned beef brisket
    4 carrots, quartered
    2 large onions, quartered
    1 small cabbage, quartered
    2 garlic cloves, chopped
    1 bay leaf
    1/4 teaspoon peppercorns
    2 cups water
    Salt and pepper


    1. Set aside cabbage and rice.

    2. Add all ingredients in crock-pot and cook on low for 3 hours.

    3. Add cabbage to crock-pot and cover with the liquid. Add lid and cook on low for 3 more hours, or until the meat is tender.

  92. Chocolate Parfait

    by Beth
    (Boulder, Co.)
    Chocolate Parfait

    Serves 4


    1 large box instant chocolate fudge pudding, mix per directions
    1 can cherry pie filling
    1 1/2 cups chocolate cake, crumbled
    Whip cream, for topping
    4 maraschino cherries
    4 clear plastic cups


    1. Place 2 heaping tablespoons of chocolate fudge pudding into dessert cups, then layer 2 tablespoons chocolate cake crumbles, then layer 2 tablespoons cherry pie filling. Repeat.

    2. Top with whipped cream and a cherry.

    Note: Can use any cake crumbles or brownies, donuts, etc. for the cake layers.

  93. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  94. Mexico Stew - Crockpot

    by Phyllis
    (Jackson City, Tn.)

    Mexico Stew - Crockpot

    Serves 10-12


    2 lbs lean ground beef
    3 each: peeled and diced, large potatoes, medium carrots, medium onions,
    1 large celery stalks, diced
    1 can corn and red kidney beans
    2 14.5 oz. cans stew tomatoes
    1 can tomato sauce
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 tablespoons steak sauce
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire
    ½ teaspoon garlic and chili powder
    salt and pepper to taste

    2-3 cups Fritos
    2-3 cups shredded cheese, sharp cheddar, pepper jack or Monterey jack
    1 can olives, sliced
    1 4 oz. can jalapenos, chopped
    ½ cup onion, diced


    1. Turn Crockpot on high heat.

    2. Add olive oil, celery, onions and ground beef in Crockpot and cook until beef is medium.

    3. Add remaining ingredients, except toppings. Stir the mixture, add seasonings and add the lid.

    4. Continue cooking 2-3 hours on high or 6-7 hours on low.

    5. Place ingredients in a serving bowl, and add your favorite toppings.