even more rv stuff 5/21/19 – gtg

The technology that we all take for granted today has opened up some pretty incredible opportunities. One such opportunity is the chance to work for yourself – from wherever you wish. Freelance work has boomed in recent years, fueled by the ability to use the internet to connect with people all around the world. No longer is it necessary to sit in an office all day if that kind of work does not suit your tastes. Building a freelance career is very much possible in the 21st century, and it is easier now than ever to make your own way.

With all of that said, this is not actually a new idea – at least not for the RV owner and traveler. Something called ‘workamping’ has been going on for many years, as RV owners have traveled around the country finding various jobs while living out of an RV. This kind of lifestyle is not for everyone, but it is an intriguing option for those who would rather stay on the move.

So, if you are thinking of being a workamper, whether using digital opportunities or traditional employment, there are a few things you need to know before getting started.

Think Taxes

Anytime you are considering earning money in a variety of places, you will want to think carefully about the tax implications of that plan. Working in states with no state income tax can make things relatively simple and straightforward, but you shouldn’t rule out states with an income tax without looking closer. The best idea to is to get help from an experienced accountant who can walk you through the tax implications of any work plan you may have.

Keep an Open Mind

In order to keep yourself busy – and keep money coming in – as a workamper, you will need to be flexible and keep an open mind. Typical workamping jobs include things like working as camp hosts, doing maintenance tasks, being a tour guide, working in a gift shop, and many, many more. While you may have the ability to pick and choose some of the work you do, it might also be necessary to take a job just for the purpose of earning a check for the time being. Without flexibility, it might be tough to make your way in this lifestyle.

Consider Insurance

One of the things many people get from a traditional job is health insurance. As a workamper, you would likely not have that luxury, so you will have to think about how you are going to acquire and maintain an insurance policy for yourself and your family. Of course you can always just sign up for health insurance and pay premiums every month, but you will need to make sure in advance that you are going to be able to afford those premiums.

It’s Not All Vacation

Perhaps the biggest misconception regarding workamping is that you are just on a non-stop vacation for years on end. Work is work, no matter where it is done. There are great things to be said about the flexibility of workamping, but always remember that you are going to have to spend at least some time focused on work rather than recreation.

Being a workamper is not for everyone, but some people absolutely love this flexible and relaxing lifestyle. Before you make the plunge, however, be sure to have your ‘ducks in a row’ – meaning you need to have a detailed plan in place for how you are going to make this work. The transition from traditional work to workamping can be tough, but countless people have done it before you – and you could be next.

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A trip to Yellowstone National Park is practically a right of passage for any RV owner. If you have an RV in the United States and you haven’t yet traveled to the original National Park, you might not know what you are missing. Yellowstone is simply spectacular, with stunning scenery around nearly every corner. While getting to Wyoming is not exactly convenient for most people, the trip will be worth the effort when you see what Yellowstone has in store.

Of course, real life has a way of interfering with dream vacations. While you might like to park your RV for a week or two around Yellowstone so you can see everything there is to see, an itinerary that leaves that kind of time just might not be in the cards. So, should you skip Yellowstone altogether? Absolutely not. Even if you only have a day or two, you can still get a good look at what makes this part of the country so special.

Below are three of the must-see spots within Yellowstone National Park that you should make an effort to visit while you are in the area.

#1 – Old Faithful

This is probably the most famous feature in the park, and you certainly don’t want to miss it. Old Faithful is a geyser which, as its name would indicate, erupts on a predictable schedule. The geyser itself it quite impressive, as is the rest of the Upper Geyser Basin. Watching geysers do their thing in person is a rare opportunity, and something that is a big part of what makes Yellowstone the attraction that it is.

#2 – Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone

For perhaps the most spectacular sight in the entire park, you will want to head to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. This canyon is highlighted by Yellowstone Falls, which includes Upper Yellowstone Falls and Lower Yellowstone Falls. The canyon is up to 1,000 feet deep in some places, and the views that can be enjoyed from around the rim are nothing short of breathtaking. If you aren’t satisfied with simply looking into the canyon from the rim, you can get a better view by taking Uncle Tom’s Trail down a series of stairs that leads into the canyon itself. Pictures taken from around the Yellowstone Falls area will likely be some of the best pictures you take on your entire trip.

#3 – Mammoth Hot Springs

You aren’t going to see the dramatic eruptions at Mammoth Hot Springs that you will see in the Upper Geyser Basin, but you will see an incredible set of hot springs that dates back thousands of years. The water that fills Mammoth Hot Springs comes to the surface at around 170* F, and a variety of algae living in the water has led many different colors being represented throughout the springs. Just as is the case with so many spots in Yellowstone, you will want to have your camera ready when you arrive that this popular destination.

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For many RV owners, the cross-country trek is one that is long considered, but perhaps never undertaken. While there is a lot to be said about taking your RV all the way from the shores of the Pacific in the west across to the Atlantic in the east, there are plenty of hurdles to clear along the way. You have to have the budget for such a long trip, you need to have time away from work, and you have to have a plan that will take you along a route suitable for the weather you will encounter. Of course, this kind of trip certainly can be done, and you might find it to be one of the most-memorable trips of your life if you decide to give it a shot.

If you do decide to plan for a coast-to-coast road trip in your RV, consider the following three tips.

Plan for Extra Time

There are going to be delays along the way – there just are. Even if you think you can stick tightly to the timeline you have laid out for the trip, you need to plan at least a couple of extra days in case you are slowed down at one point or another. For instance, you might have to have a little bit of work done on the RV, or you might run into road construction that holds you back from reaching your intended destination one night. Whatever the case may be, you don’t want to have to rush through the back half of your trip simply because you have some slow downs earlier on. Build in a little bit of ‘wiggle room’ to your itinerary so that you can relax and not stress about sticking tightly to your schedule.

Various Forms of Payment

You don’t want to bring along only one or two forms of payment when you are heading out on a long trip. Sure, you might plan to use a specific credit card for all of your purchases, but what happens if there is a hold on that account for some reason? Or what if you simply lose or break the card? Take along a variety of payment options, such as alternate cards and some cash, so that you have options for making basic purchases like fuel, food, etc.

Extended Breaks

Although it will be fun to see the country, you aren’t going to have that much fun if you feel like you are simply on the interstate day after day, checking off the miles to the next overnight stop. Instead, try to plan some two or three night stays in a few different places so you can set up camp and relax for a while. You don’t want to get so tired of the road that you are simply hoping to get back home as quickly as possible. Stopping for multiple nights will allow you to check out what various places have to offer, and you can rest up for the next legs of your journey.

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There are plenty of RV accessories that you will need to buy when you are first getting started as an RV owner. While you might think your job is done when you purchase the RV, you will soon find that you actually need a variety of other items if you are going to be able to set up and use your new rig with ease. Most of these accessories aren’t particularly expensive, but you will still need to go through the process of acquiring them.

However, there are also plenty of other accessories that are far from vital – but might be fun to add to your travel experience. These are items that you can certainly enjoy RV’ing without, but they might be able to add a little something to your RV that you will appreciate. Consider the following three accessories as possible options to add to the rest of your RV equipment.

State Stickers

This one is something of an RV classic, and you have probably seen them on other RV’s over the years. This accessory usually is placed on the back or the side of the RV, and it is used to display which states across the country you have visited in your RV. Most sets include an outline of the United States, and then an individual sticker for each of the states. As you visit each one, you place the sticker onto the RV to demonstrate that you have been there. Not only is this a fun way to keep track of all the places you go in your RV, it is also a good conversation starter with others in the campground. As your map starts to fill up, you can make new plans to hit other states around the country and explore the great destinations within each of them.

A Bird feeder

To use this accessory successfully, you will need to make sure that you are visiting an area that has small birds which could be attracted to a bird feeder. Also, this usually works better when you are set up in the same location for a long period of time so the birds can get used to the location of the food and learn when and where to come for a snack. You will need to be careful however, that your bird feeder doesn’t attracted unwanted – and larger – wildlife that you don’t necessarily want hanging around your campsite. Check on any regulations in the area regarding feeing wildlife also, so you don’t get into trouble by attracting birds that aren’t welcome in the RV area.

Satellite Dish

This is an accessory for those who like to spend time out exploring the outdoors – but also like to settle into the RV at night and enjoy some television. Whether you don’t want to miss out on the games of your favorite team, or you want to catch a particular show that you like to follow, a satellite dish can make that possible right from inside the RV. There are a number of different satellite dish options on the market, so you can shop through the options and pick out the one that works best for your needs. While you will need to pay a fee for the subscription to the satellite service, that fee could be worth it to you if you spend a lot of time in your RV.

One thing to take into consideration is the usual places that you take your RV, and their surroundings. When you are among a lot of tall trees or down in a valley surrounded by taller peaks, you might have a difficult time using the satellite successfully. Most often, satellite service is best in open areas where there are very few tall objects around to get in the way of your signal. Before committing to the purchase of an RV, do some research into how well it will work in the areas where you intend to travel.

None of the items on this list are required for RV’ing, of course, but you might find that one or more of them appeal to you in some way. There are countless RV accessories carried at camping and outdoor stores, so make it a point to browse their selections from time to time in search of the next item to add to your RV experience.

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When shopping for an RV, size is one of the first big decisions that you will need to make. RV’s come in a wide range of size options, from smaller campers that are best-suited to two people, to large Motorhomes that can easily handle whole families. There are a number of considerations that you need to make when deciding how big of an RV to purchase, including how many people you usually travel with, what kind of vehicle you have to pull the RV (in the case of a trailer), and where you like to camp.

While all of the variables, and more, should be weighed during your decision making process, this article will lay out a few of the advantages of choosing a smaller RV. Obviously, you can’t pick a small RV if you are regularly traveling with a large family, but many couples even wrestle with the choice between extra space in a large rig and more convenience with a small one. Hopefully, the points below will at least start the discussion regarding how big your RV should be, so you can come to a good decision when you make the purchase.

It All Starts with the Price

Buying a smaller RV is less expensive than purchasing a bigger one. That probably isn’t breaking news to you, but it is the first point you should consider. Take a look at the cost difference between two RV that you are considering – one larger, and one smaller. How much money would you save by opting for the smaller option? You should also look at what that would mean to your monthly payment on a loan, so you can think about what you would be able to do with that extra money each month. It might be that you decide the extra cost for the larger RV is worth it to you in the end – but make sure you go through this exercise to think it over carefully.

The Savings Don’t Stop There

Beyond a lower purchase price, smaller RV’s continue to save money over the life of the vehicle through lower maintenance and repair costs. Just like it costs more (generally) to care for a large truck than a small sedan, it will likely cost you more to maintain your big RV as opposed to a smaller one. Bigger rigs have bigger parts, and in the case of Motorhomes, bigger engines as well. Also, with a lower purchase price for your RV, you should be able to get a better rate on your insurance. All the way around, a smaller RV is simply less expensive to own.

Handling the Corners

If you like to camp in some far off places that maybe aren’t that easy to get to, having a smaller RV is a big advantage when it comes to handling tight corners or narrow campsites. As your RV gets bigger and bigger, the list of potential places where you can camp gets smaller and smaller. Before you make a purchase, think about where you would like to be able to take your RV on vacations, and look into any size restrictions for those locations. The last thing you want to do is purchase a large RV only to learn that it is too big to take to some of your favorite places.

Set-Up and Take-Down

When you arrive at a campsite with your RV, the first thing you need to do is set-up everything for your stay. Before you leave, then, everything needs to be taken back down and put away before you hit the road. With a smaller RV, these chores should take you less time to complete – leaving you more time to fish, hike, boat, or do whatever else you plan to do on your trip. While RV’s are generally much more convenient than everything that goes along with tent camping, there still is some amount of work that needs to be done. The more you are able to reduce that workload by traveling with a smaller RV, the more time that will be left over for the fun parts of your trip.

It isn’t practical for everyone to buy a small RV. Families with young children who are only going to get bigger probably need to purchase a larger rig that they can grow into. However, if you have the ability to consider a smaller RV, it is definitely worth some thought. Often, gaining some extra interior space isn’t worth all of the trade-offs you have to make in terms of cost, maneuverability, etc. Before you purchase your next RV, be sure to consider rigs of all sizes – you just might be surprised at which one you like best.

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The idea of living full-time in an RV is not a new one. For as long as there has been RV’s on the road, there have been people who have decided to use these rigs as their permanent home rather than as a vacation companion. Of course, living in an RV is a personal decision that you would have to make with your family, as there are plenty of sacrifices that come with this option. RV’s are great for many purposes, but only certain people will find them suitable for full-time living.

With that said, living in your RV on a full-time basis is now easier than ever, thanks to the great developments of technology. If you have access the right technologies, you can take away many of the hassles that used to be associated with life in an RV. Of course, living in an RV is never going to be exactly the same as living in a 2,000+ square foot home, but the ‘playing field’ has been leveled to some degree thanks to our high-tech world.

Live on the Road

One of the main benefits of living in an RV is the ability to pick up basically your whole life and take it somewhere else. This is attractive to many people who don’t like the idea of investing their life savings in a house that is tied to the foundation and won’t be moving anytime soon. Get tired of where you are living? Simply fire up the RV and go somewhere new. To a certain extent, it is easy to see the attraction to this idea.

Of course, on the practical side, there has long been plenty of issues with this plan. How do you pay your bills? Where do you do your banking? You needed a home base on some kind, but that simply isn’t the case anymore. Today, you can do your banking online, pay all of your bills online, and much more. It isn’t usually necessary to go to a business physically in order to use their services, so you can be anywhere that you have an internet connection.

Work on the Road

The other major development which makes it possible (and maybe even attractive) to live in an RV is the ability to work while you are traveling. There are many jobs today that offer telecommuting, meaning that you should be able to work from any place you like – as long as you are connected to the web, and have the right equipment on hand. Working remotely is a movement that is only just getting started, so expect more and more people to join this revolution in years to come.

Even with the advances in technology, living in an RV is still not an option that is going to work for the majority of people. RV’s offer small living spaces, and they never will be able to quite match what is offered by a traditional house. However, if you are someone who has always been attracted to the idea of RV living – even if only for a predetermined amount of time – the amazing technology we can access today makes that dream a little bit closer to a reality.

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Is a tent trailer really an RV? It depends on your personal definition of the term ‘recreational vehicle’. In the end, though, it really doesn’t matter. Whether you think of a tent trailer as an RV or you would rather lump it in some other category, they are a viable option for countless people who wish to explore the outdoors. Smaller and less expensive than Motorhomes or full-size camping trailers, tent trailers represent a great choice for a very specific segment of the market.

If you are thinking of getting into RV ownership for the first time, but you aren’t sure that you are ready to make the leap, take a look at the tent trailer options on the market today. Following is a short list of reasons why a tent trailer could make for a great first step toward eventually owning a full-size RV.

Affordable

The number one reason to consider buying a tent trailer is the cost savings over a traditional RV. If you are willing to buy a slightly used tent trailer, you could easily own one for less than $10,000 – which is far less than you are going to have to invest to own a quality Motorhome, for example. By lowering the initial investment that is required, you will give yourself the opportunity to experience RV-style travel without taking on a huge loan. Of course, should you decide that you enjoy RV travel and you feel like you need something bigger, you could always sell the tent trailer in order to upsize.

Easy to Pull

Most tent trailers are light, meaning you won’t necessarily need a huge vehicle in order to pull your tent trailer from spot to spot. In fact, there is a good chance that you already own a vehicle with the capability to pull an average-sized tent trailer. This is another point that will reduce the upfront investment required to get into the RV lifestyle. By not having to buy a full-size truck to go along with your trailer, you can save yourself money while still enjoying many great camping experiences.

Simple to Use

It can be intimidating to purchase a large motorhome as your first entry into the RV world considering just how complicated those large vehicles can be. There are a number of different systems on those large RV that you will need to learn how to operate. While they provide great comfort for your trips, there is something of a learning curve to deal with. On the other hand, most tent trailers are simple and easy to use. By the end of the first day on your first trip, you will likely have a great understanding of how your new toy works, and you will be able to then just relax and enjoy your vacation.

Tent trailers have some limitations, as they don’t offer all of the bells and whistles that come with full-size RV’s. However, when budget is a concern, a tent trailer is a great way to get started. There are plenty of quality models on the market, so you should be able to find something that suits your needs nicely.

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It’s hard to imagine a nicer place in the world than San Diego, California. The weather is nearly perfect, the scenery is incredible, and there is plenty to do and see all around the city and surrounding areas. Most people, after visiting San Diego for a few days, have just one reaction – why don’t I live here?

Many places advertise great weather, but San Diego is one that truly delivers. The average high temperature in July is 74.6*. The average high temperature in December? 65.1*. There isn’t much difference between summer and winter, other than shorter days and cooler nights. In all, San Diego receives more than 3,000 hours of sunshine per year on average, and barely over 10’’ of rain. Whether coming for a week or a lifetime, you are likely to experience plenty of beautiful weather.

Nearly Endless Activities

If you are coming in to San Diego in your RV for a vacation, you just might be overwhelmed by the sheer number of things there are available to do and see. There is a great military history in the city, and the USS Midway Museum is a popular attraction. Balboa Park is a must-see for visitors, and the San Diego Zoo is a world-renown destination. Like to play golf? Torrey Pines is among the top public golf facilities in the entire country. Want to take in a baseball game? The San Diego Padres play at Petco Park, considered one of the prettiest ballparks in the league. Safe to say, there is no reason for you to ever be bored when spending time in San Diego.

Plenty of RV Parks

Another nice feature of San Diego is the many RV parks that you will have to choose from when you visit. It can be hard to find good options for parking your RV in and around big cities, but you shouldn’t have much trouble in this area. In fact, there are even a couple of waterfront RV parks that will place you just steps from the amazing San Diego beaches. Naturally, you aren’t the only person thinking of traveling to San Diego, so be sure to book your reservations well in advance.

Don’t Forget to Eat!

San Diego is also well-known for its impressive cuisine. While many RV owners like to cook inside the RV in order to save money, you will want to eat out around town at least a couple times during your stay. Specifically, if you love Mexican food, San Diego is the place to be.

Should you be interested by any of the attractions north in the Los Angeles area, you can easily make a day trip up to see things like Disneyland, Hollywood, and more. Staying in or near San Diego will provide you with a slightly more laid back setting than the L.A. area, but you can still take a side trip up the coast to see a specific destination. After one trip to San Diego, there is a good chance that you will be booking a return vacation just as soon as you have the chance.

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Washington State is one of the prettiest states in the country, with plenty of outdoor recreational opportunities for RV travelers. What you might not know, is that the state doesn’t all look like you probably are picturing your head. When you think of Washington state, do you picture lush green terrain with countless evergreen trees? That is accurate – in the western half of the state. However, if you head east of the Cascade Mountains, you get an entirely different scene. For the most part, the trees are gone and you will encounter a landscape that looks more like a desert than anything else.

It doesn’t rain nearly as much in Eastern Washington as it does on the western side of the state, but water still plays a prominent role in what you will find when you come to visit. Specifically, the Columbia River is one of the great rivers in the country, and recreational opportunities exists up and down the river – all the way out to the coast where it meets the Pacific Ocean. The river enters the United States in the northeastern corner of Washington, and it winds its way throughout Eastern Washington before forming the border with Oregon and heading out to the coast.

Memorable Fishing

If you like to use your RV to head to beautiful places for fishing trips, the Columbia River offers plenty of those opportunities. The river is far too big and complex to list all of the fishing opportunities here, so you will need to do a little research in order to locate the perfect spot for the kind of fishing that you like to do. Of course, before you head out on a trip, be sure to acquire all of the necessary licenses that you will need to fish legally in the state of Washington.

Plenty of RV Options

RV travel is popular in the Pacific Northwest, meaning you will find many great RV parks – both public and private – that you can consider for your stay. In some places these RV parks will be right along the banks of the river, so you can enjoy great views from right outside your RV window. Since there are numerous dams along the length of the Columbia – many of which provide power to the residents of the state – the river more closely resembles a series of lakes or reservoirs than it does an actual, free-flowing river.

Cold Winters

Don’t be fooled by the desert-like appearance of the Eastern Washington landscape – this area is still very cold in the winter months. For the most part, you will want to plan any trip to see the Columbia River for the spring, summer, or early fall. From November through to February you will find that most of Eastern Washington is extremely cold and often covered in snow.

The Columbia River is one of those destinations that you certainly aren’t going to see all at once. However, once you take that initial trip to stay along the shores of the river and perhaps do a little fishing or boating, you just might find yourself wanting to come back again and again.

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When you think about traveling to California, what do you picture? For most people, there is a specific list of locations that first spring to mind when California vacations are discussed. Los Angeles, Palm Springs, San Francisco, San Diego, Napa Valley, Yosemite, Death Valley, Monterey, Big Sur, and the Redwoods are just some of the popular attractions located across this large state. While each of those is a worthy destination in its own right, there is another area that deserves consideration – the Shasta region in northern California.

Both Mount Shasta and Shasta Lake offer stunning scenery just a short drive north from Redding. There are a variety of recreational activities available in the Shasta region, from hiking and climbing to fishing, boating, and more. Those who love the outdoors come from all around California and beyond to enjoy everything that the region has to offer.

Shasta Lake

Shasta Lake is actually a reservoir formed behind the Shasta Dam. The dam is the ninth tallest in the United States, and it provides both electricity and irrigation water for the Central Valley. It is actually the water of the Sacramento River that creates the lake, which is the third largest body of water in California when it is at full capacity. It is common to see house boats on the lake, along with boaters enjoying water skiing, fishing, and more.

Mount Shasta

Even if you have traveled extensively around the western half of the United States, Mount Shasta is still likely to be one of the most impressive sights you have seen in person. It is the second-tallest peak in the Cascade Mountains (behind Mount Rainier in Washington), as it stands more than 14,000 feet tall. However, unlike many other tall peaks, there is very little around Shasta in the way of other peaks, making it look even taller as it stands guard over the surrounding lowlands. Whether you are driving along I-5 from the north or south, you will be struck with an incredible view of Shasta on a sunny day – which there are plenty of in this part of California.

A Rural Experience

While you can expect stunning scenery at just about every turn when you visit the Shasta region, don’t expect to find a plethora of amenities or urban surroundings. This part of California is decidedly rural in nature. Once you get past Redding if you are coming from the south, or Yreka if you are coming from the north, you will get to experience a truly natural vacation. The town of Weed sits near the foot of Mount Shasta, but it has a population of under 3,000 people. Despite the rural setting, however, there are plenty of RV parks and campgrounds throughout this region. With a little bit of planning prior to your departure, you should be able to have a great time traveling in your RV exploring Shasta Lake, Mount Shasta, and beyond.

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As you already know, there are plenty of RV accessories on the market today. There are entire stores (not to mention the internet) full of RV gear, gadgets, and gizmos. As an RV owner, it can be hard to separate out what is really necessary equipment from what is just marketing fluff. In this article, we are going to discuss one piece of gear specifically – wind deflectors.

Even if you didn’t know it, you have probably seen a few of these around on the roads over the years. A wind deflector is simply a piece of equipment that is mounted to your vehicle with the idea of directing air flow around your rig. RV’s are big and heavy (obviously), so reducing the amount of drag on them should – theoretically – improve your gas mileage over the long run. But does it work? Well, that answer is not so simple to determine.

It Can Work

To be sure, this is a concept that holds water, and it can work under the correct circumstances. If you are able to get a wind deflector that does actually divert the air flow around the top of your RV, you should see an improvement in gas mileage – and also an improvement in your RV’s ability to get down the road without too much strain. Unfortunately, the devil is in the details when it comes to this piece of equipment. The theory is solid, but the execution behind the theory is not so great.

Need a Perfect Match

If you were to hope to have a wind deflector that would improve the aerodynamics of your rig as it moves down the road, you would need to have one that has been specifically designed for your combination of vehicle and RV. Obviously, having one custom built is not going to be cost efficient. So, you are left to choose from those already on the market. These cost just a few hundred bucks, but they aren’t customized to your rig. In the end, you will be left with something that may or may not provide you with any help at all. If you are looking for improved gas mileage, you will probably be better served to adjust your driving habits than to add a wind deflector to your setup.

Other Benefits

With that said, there are some other potential benefits that you could enjoy after adding a wind deflector. For one thing, you should find that there are far fewer smashed bugs on the front of your RV when you arrive at your destination if you have a wind deflector installed. While the aerodynamic effects may not be enough to save you a significant amount of gas, they are usually sufficient to push bugs up and around the front of the RV. If you hate the chore of scrubbing the squished bugs off your RV from time to time, avoiding that chore alone may be worth the investment in a wind deflector.

Another possible gain that can be enjoyed through the use of this product is improved stability during your drives. Every RV owner knows the feeling of having the rig pull and tug across the road from time to time – especially in windy conditions. However, if you are using a wind deflector, you may find that your entire rig slides through the air more comfortably, with a reduction in some of those uncomfortable pulling feelings.

So, do wind deflectors really work? Well, that depends on what you want them to do for you. As a way to save money at the pump, you would probably be better off taking a pass on this item. However, if you would just like one for the benefit of a smoother ride down the road and fewer bugs on your RV, they are likely some nice gains to be made. In the end, of course, the choice will be yours on whether or not to invest in this piece of RV gear.

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If you are shopping for a new RV, you are surely already seen that most models that include slide out sections. These slide outs are meant to add space to the interior of the RV while you are parked and camped, but still allow the rig to be small enough to get around on the freeways. Depending on the size of your family, a slide out or two can make all the difference between an RV that is too cramped and one that is just right. While most new RV’s today are manufactured with slide outs, you still may find some older models that don’t have them.

In order to help you decide if you need to have slide outs on your list of features for your next RV, consider the following info about slide outs and what they mean to the use of an RV.

Additional Space

Obviously, the big advantage of having one or more slide outs on your RV is simply the amount of interior space they can add. Once you have been inside of an RV with the slides pushed out, you just might wonder how you ever stayed in one without them. There are limitations to how spacious an RV can be when it doesn’t feature slide outs, so your living and bedroom areas are likely to be far more enjoyable when they are present. For those traveling with a least a few people, the added space that slide outs present will be greatly appreciated.

Extra Work

When you arrive at the campsite for your stay, there are already plenty of chores to take care of, including leveling the RV, getting everything hooked up, and much more. If you have slide outs, you can add them to the list of things that need to be taken care of before your home is ready for the week. Many never models open and close by push button, but you will still need to account for them while leveling and get things organized inside once they are pushed out. While you will probably get pretty efficient and setting everything up and putting it all back away, it is another step that must be taken care of.

Great for Long Periods of Time

If you are going to be staying in your RV for an extended period of time, having a slide out or two is an easy decision because you will appreciate the extra room that you have available. Once you get the RV set up, you won’t have to worry moving around so you can just relax and appreciate the square footage that has been added to the rig.

Potential for Problems

Anytime you add moving parts to an RV (or anything else), there is the potential for trouble that will require repair. Most notably, RV slide outs are known for having water leak problems, which is the last thing that you want to deal with when you are supposed to be having a fun vacation. Make sure, if you are looking at a used RV, that the seals and other parts associated with the slide outs are in good working condition.

Gas Mileage May Suffer

Slide outs add weight to an RV, meaning that you might not get as good of gas mileage as you could without them. Given the cost of gas, and the already low gas mileage that you will be getting in an RV, this could be an expensive problem. Again, it comes down to how much you are going to be driving the RV, compared to how long you intend to stay and camp. If you stay for long periods of time at your destinations, then the cost of fuel might not be such a big deal.

When shopping for a new RV, you might not have much of a choice in the matter – almost all of them include at least one slide out. All in all, they are a great addition that makes your RV feel a little bit more like a home and gives you room to relax and enjoy your trip. However, there can be a couple downsides to the presence of a slide out, so make sure you understand those going in. Hopefully, your slide outs will be trouble-free and you can simply appreciate the added room they make for you and your family.

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When most people pack up the RV to head to Wyoming, they have one destination in mind – Yellowstone National Park. There is good reason for that, of course. Yellowstone is the original National Park, and it is truly an incredible place. Anyone who loves the outdoors and the natural world should strive to make at least one trip to unforgettable Yellowstone.

With that said, there is another destination within Wyoming that is very much deserving of your attention. Grand Teton National Park is just south of Yellowstone, and it contains many stunning sights of its own. A different landscape than Yellowstone, Grand Teton presents beautiful peaks, abundant wildlife, rivers and lakes, and much more. While it will never be as famous as its neighbor to the north, there is plenty to love about Grand Teton.

Plenty of Bears

One of the first things to know about Grand Teton National Park is that there is an active bear population which must be respected. There are black and grizzly bears within the boundaries of the park, and you should understand proper bear safety before heading out for any hikes or other activities. Of course, it can be a great thrill to see a bear in person, but only from a safe distance. In addition to bears, some of the other wildlife that inhabits the park includes moose, elk, bald eagles, gray wolves, coyotes, and more.

Ample Activities

Grand Teton National Park is a wonderland of outdoor activity and adventure. Among the many opportunities that you could find inside the park including fishing, biking, hiking, bird watching, climbing, horseback riding, and more. Some of these activities may be seasonal, so check with the park before planning your trip. Although the park is open year-round, many of the roads within the park will be closed during the winter months.

Pair with a Trip to Yellowstone

As long as you are making the drive in your RV to Wyoming, you might as well see both of these great National Parks in one visit. Plan your stay to include time for exploring both Yellowstone and Grand Teton. While it is unlikely that you will be able to see all of the parks in just one trip, you can at least hit the highlights and hopefully come back another time to see even more.

It might seem like a long trek to take your rig out to Wyoming, but the drive might not be as bad as you think – especially in the summer months when traveling tends to be easier. For instance, the drive is under 15 hours from Los Angeles, under 13 hours from Seattle, and just under 20 hours from Dallas. With good planning, you should be able to incorporate a few other stops along the way depending on where you live, making this a road trip that you will remember for many years to come.

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