Would you make a good Workamper?


Many RVers we talk to have the dream of one day being able to leave their jobs, friends, family, and basically the day-to-day life they’ve been living, in order to travel in their RV to destinations unknown. Sure, many folks do wait until retirement and do just that,  staying on the road for months, or even years at a time.

What if you don’t want to wait, but you still need income? Well, some people are turning to Workamping. The short version is that these individuals, couples, and sometimes families travel  Recreational Vehiclefrom place to place and find work in exchange for a free campsite, utilities, wages  or some combination of all.

They’ll typically find positions at privately owned campgrounds, RV resorts, seasonal work (i.e. Christmas trees, fall hay rides, pumpkins, etc.), state and national parks, and even some retail stores. You’ll usually find that Workampers are couples, including many retirees, but it’s not uncommon to find single individuals as well.

Although there are some year-round Workamping jobs, most are seasonal, which fits in just fine with the folks that fill the jobs since most people enjoy the travel that comes along with Workamping.

If this is sounds like something that might interest you, probably the best place to start is on the Workamper website,  Workamper.com.

Good luck if you decide to look into this.

Until next time… Happy RVing!

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Take Me Out to the Ballgame!


Boys of Summer

Panorama of Busch Stadium.

Panorama of Busch Stadium.

One of the surest signs that Spring is here is when major league ballparks around the country open their doors for another season of balls, strikes, hot dogs, thrills and spills! For many fans, the excitement is  not just about seeing their favorite teams, but it’s about getting to their favorite ballpark. Whether it’s a historic landmark like Wrigley Field in Chicago, Fenway in Boston, or a more recent jewel such as Citizen’s Bank Park in Philadelphia, or the new Busch Stadium in St. Louis, each ballpark has its own unique features, food and design.

How About Taking Your RV?

The sign outside the Chicago baseball park Wri...

The sign outside the Chicago baseball park Wrigley Field at night. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you have a passion for baseball and ballparks, but find that flying around the country and staying in various hotels can get pretty expensive, how about touring in an RV? It’s much more cost-effective, plus it gives you a great opportunity to see other sites in your travels and spend quality time with friends and family!

Planning

Unless you have unlimited time and budget, planning is very important for having a fun and successful trip. First, decide where you’d like to go and then check each of the team’s schedules. From there, you can probably put together a tentative schedule and begin to check ticket availability for the dates and locations you’ve chosen. Keep in mind that ticket demand can vary wildly from place to place. And last, find yourself a place to park! Since most ballparks are in major cities, you’ll probably have to find a campground in the suburbs. If you’re planning on driving a motorhome to the ballpark, be sure to check each individual team for RV parking policies.

Other Considerations

It’s very easy to over spend on a trip like this, so come up with a reasonable budget that includes food and souvenirs at each ballpark and stick to it! You should also consider ways to capture your trip by taking lots of pictures, saving ticket stubs, programs, and other tokens from each ballpark. If you like to write, this is a great opportunity to keep a journal, either online or the old fashion way! Buying some small storage containers or folders to keep reminders from each location separate is worth considering.

If you do decide to try a ballpark tour this Spring and/or Summer, please come back and let us know how you made out! And, if any of you have already done something like this and would like to add some advice, please do so in the comments area.

Here’s to a great baseball season, whoever your favorite team may be!

Until next time … Happy RVing!

And it’s good for you too!


Good old home cookin!

Good old home cookin!

If you’re an RV owner, you know first hand how much fun RV travel can be. Whether it’s the spontaneity of a last-minute trip to a place you just saw on TV, a planned vacation, or escaping to your travel trailer at a nearby campground, owning an RV provides you with a variety of unique experiences and the freedom to hit the road at a moments notice. Did you know, though, that RVing is also good for your health?

Vacations in general are good for you.

Now, it’s not much of a stretch to figure out that getting away from the day-to-day stresses of work and life would have a positive impact on your health. In fact, recent research by the U.S. Travel association shows that there are a number of health benefits associated with vacationing. For example, an annual vacation can cut a person’s risk of heart attack by 50%, more than half of the people surveyed said they felt more connected to their families following a vacation, and it also shows that up to 50% of those returning from vacation experienced an increase in their work productivity.

But RV getaways are even better!

The thing that sets RVing a part from a regular vacation is both the convenience and economy of  taking a vacation. These factors give RV owners opportunities to take more frequent vacations and, therefore,  they’re able to reap the benefits of vacationing on a more regular basis.

It’s not just that though. RVing gives you even more benefits than your typical vacation because of  the lifestyle itself.  Traveling in your RV encourages being outdoors and participating in outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, jogging, and swimming. You’ll also find yourself on a more regular eating schedule and gobbling up healthier food by avoiding the pitfalls that can come with eating out every night. And we can’t mention enough how great RV travel is for family bonding and all the benefits that come along with reconnecting with your family and loved ones.

RV Lifestyle Benefits in the News

Earlier this month RV Industry Association (RVIA) President, Richard Coon responded to a request by a Federal Task Force on Childhood Obesity regarding possible ways to stem this epidemic. Citing a February 2010 study by Harris Interactive of RV owners, Mr. Coon was able to convey that 81% of those surveyed found that their children spent less time on sedentary activities like TV and video games when RVing, while 72% said they made healthier eating choices. In a separate RVIA study from March 2010, 74% of those surveyed found that they were more active on RV vacations than any other type of family vacation. The obvious conclusion here is that RVing is one way to promote better health and healthy habits with our kids.

So, what are you waiting for!! The weather’s turning nice and it’s time to get out there and have some fun!!

Until next time, Happy RVing!

Fuel For Thought


Yes, it’s time to tackle the age-old question — Diesel or Gas. When it comes to selecting a motorhome, this is probably one of the most frequently asked questions. Surprisingly, the answer isn’t simply a matter of one being better than another. Just like making recommendations for a trailer versus a fifth wheel, or a Class A type versus a Class C, the answer really comes down to the same thing — how are you going to use it. With that in mind, we’ve come up with some guidelines to get you started. You should also consult with your local RV dealer. Make sure you speak to someone with some expertise on the topic.

Do Diesel

Damon Astoria Diesel Pusher

Astoria Diesel Pusher by Damon

In general, the rule of thumb has been if you’re going to put a good number of miles on your motorhome, you should go with a diesel. This point of view still pretty much holds true. For full timers in particular, who can really rack up the miles, a diesel is almost a must. They last longer than their gas counterparts and require routine maintenance less frequently. In general, they also tend to get better gas mileage. The cost is likely to be more than a gas unit, but there are now some nice, affordably priced diesel pushers on the market.

Go Gas

Winnebago Sightseer Class A Motorhome

In general, if you plan to only use your motorhome for short trips, and don’t plan to put a lot of miles on it, then gas will probably work best for you. Typically, gas motorhomes are less expensive too and  easier to work on for the do-it-yourselfers. In the past, diesel pushers were  typically thought to have more to offer as far as your living amenities were concerned. This, however, has changed over the last few years, and you’ll now find that many of your entry-level gas motorhomes now include a good number of luxury items.

Get Torqued

I’m not even going to attempt here to review the complexities of torque/RPMs which can get pretty complicated. That said, if you’re planning on towing a vehicle or trailer, or are planning to do a lot of travel through the mountains, then this is something very important to factor into your decision. Generally speaking, you’re going to find that diesel motorhomes can tow more and have more power than their gas counterparts, but the specifics vary dramatically between the various models.

Always a good idea when making any purchase, especially a large one like this, be sure to do your research and talk to the experts to help ensure you find the right rig for your lifestyle. Good luck!

Until next time.. Happy RVing!!

Know your ABC’s (and TT’s and 5W’s too!)


For a seasoned RVer, terms like “Class A”, “Travel Trailer“, “Fifth Wheel”, etc. are second nature. No matter what type of rig you own, it doesn’t take long before you’ve become friendly with people who own all different types of RVs and have a chance to explore the many different types, makes and models out there.

On the other hand, try talking RV jargon with a non-RVer and you might as well be speaking a foreign language! So, for those of you who are out there trying to learn about RVs, and have stumbled upon our blog, or for you experienced owners out there that are tired of explaining the different “types” of RVs to family and friends, we have this quick guide to the RV types for your reading pleasure.

Be sure to share this with your non-RVing friends, and soon they’ll be talkin the talk too!

Class A Motorhome

Winnebago Sightseer Class A Motorhome


The Class A’s are bus style motorhomes and come in both diesel and gas-powered versions.

While the amenities will vary greatly from brand to brand, in general most recent Class A motorhomes have a full kitchen and bath, bedroom, and centrally controlled heating and air-conditioning.

As recently as a few years ago, this type of RV was primarily thought of as one for retirees traveling the country. However, there are currently many manufacturers who offer floor plans that include bunk beds, perfect for families or grandkids! In higher end models, you’ll find a large number of luxury features that make it feel like you’re staying in our own custom home on wheels.

Driving one is surprisingly easy, once you get used to the size and learn a few tricks of the trade.

Class B Motorhomes

Also known as van campers

More commonly known as van campers, Class B motorhomes are built on van or flat panel truck shells. These types typically have accommodations for sleeping, as well as bathroom and kitchen facilities.

They are easy to drive in pretty much any setting and,  in some models, can reach full standing height (for most people) by raising the roof or dropping the floor.

Class C Motorhomes

Jayco Greyhawk Class C Motorhome

Jayco Greyhawk Class C Motorhome

Class C motorhomes are built on an automotive van frame, but have a wider body section attached to the cab. Most Class C motorhomes, like the Class A, come with a full kitchen, bath and bedroom.

One of the more distinctive features is the additional space over the cab area. This space is often used for more sleeping space or an entertainment center. These types come in a big variety of floor plans and offer something for everyone.

Since you’re closer to the ground, driving a Class C motorhome can feel more like driving a large pickup truck, than a motorhome. Some people are more comfortable with this.

Travel Trailers

Autumn Ridge Travel Trailer

Autumn Ridge Travel Trailer

Travel Trailers are pretty much self-explanatory, in that they are trailers that you tow behind your vehicle. That said, there is more to travel trailers than just that.

First of all, there is a very wide range in the size and weight from the smallest to the largest travel trailers. This is important to know since you need to have a vehicle that is capable of towing your trailer. In recent years, manufacturers have started to offer lighter weight models that can be towed using 6 cylinder vehicles. It is vital that you check with your local RV dealer to get their recommendations on how much your vehicle can tow.

As far as amenities are concerned, they will vary with size, but most will come with a full kitchen and bath. Sleeping accommodations will run the gamut depending on size.

Fifth Wheel

Jayco Designer Fifth Wheel

Jayco Designer Fifth Wheel

Fifth Wheels (or 5th Wheels) are similar to travel trailers as far as amenities go and the fact that you tow them, however, they are designed specifically to be towed by pick up trucks and require a special fifth wheel hitch installed in the bed of the truck.

With a raised forward section, this design gives the fifth wheel a bi-level floor plan that is unique to fifth wheels.

You’ll also find a fifth wheel in general, to be more spacious and have more storage available. The bi-level design also gives you more of a feeling of privacy. Many models come with a large picture window at the back of the unit. As with travel trailers, it’s important to talk to your local RV dealer to determine your towing vehicle’s capabilities.

Expandable Travel Trailer

Jay Feather Expandable Travel Trailer

Jay Feather Expandable Travel Trailer

The Expandable Travel Trailer is a cross between your standard travel trailer and a folding or pop-up camper. They are an enclosed structure like the travel trailer, but also have ends that tip out to sleeping accommodations.

The exp’s are typically lighter and less expensive than their travel trailer counterparts and many can be towed with a mid-sized family vehicle. Again, and we can not emphasize enough, you need to check with your local dealer regarding towing capacity.

Many campers who are taking their first steps into RVing choose an expandable to start out with.

Sport Utility RV/Toy Hauler

Jayco Octane Toy Hauler

Jayco Octane Toy Hauler

Toy haulers come as both travel trailers and fifth wheels. What differentiates them as toy haulers is that they have a “garage” to store your motorcycles, ATVs, and other “toys”. The garage  is separated by a wall from your living quarters.

Many also offer amenities unique to that type of lifestyle, such as storage tanks for gasoline. As is the case with standard travel trailers and fifth wheels, toy haulers come in a huge variety of sizes and floor plans. Again, I repeat, be sure to check your towing capabilities!

Some manufacturers offer toy haulers as Class A and Class C motorhomes as well.

The last thing worth mentioning here is a word about slideouts. A slideout, or slide, is a wall that moves outward to create more living space in your RV. The majority of RVs offer at least one slideout and can range from one small one, to one that runs the length of the unit, to ones that have up to four, all depending on the size and floor plan.

Well, that should do it. Hope this information helps you out.

Until next time, Happy RVing!

Getting to know the Damon Astoria Diesel Pusher


Astoria Diesel Pusher by Damon

The decision to carry a new model, especially a diesel pusher, is one that we do not take lightly.  In the past, we’ve carried some pretty high-priced pushers like the Dutch Star from Newmar. However, the majority of people we talked to over the past few years indicated they wanted a diesel pusher at a more affordable price.

The process to find such a product can be more difficult than you think. Our owners and sales manager attended numerous national trade shows, viewed dozens of products, talked to the many manufacturer reps, and “crunched” the numbers.  The goal was to find a diesel pusher that met our pricing criteria, without sacrificing quality. The Damon Astoria fits the bill perfectly.

Damon Astoria Kitchen

Although it’s considered an”entry level” diesel pusher and priced as low as many gas coaches, we think you’ll be impressed with the quality and luxury of the Astoria.

A few of the many features include:

  • Freightliner XC Raised Rail Chassis
  • 340-hp Cummins Engine with 660 ft lb of Torque
  • Solid Wood Raised Panel Cabinet Doors Throughout
  • Corian Solid Surface Kitchen Countertop, Range Cover, and Sink Covers
  • Dual 13.5 BTU Ducted Central Air Conditioning
  • 34,000 BTU Floor Ducted Electronic Ignition Furnace
  • 50-AMP, 120-volt service
  • Onan 6.0 kW Quiet Diesel Generator
  • Exterior GFCI Receptacle
  • Full Height shower with Door
  • And plenty more

Astoria Master Bedroom

We welcome you to come see the Astoria in person, or you can check it out online by viewing either our in-stock models, or in our virtual showroom!