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Do you use your RV the way it was designed to be used?

November 10, 2012 by Bob Difley · 38 Comments  
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By Bob Difley

boondocking_desert2Many new RV owners drive off the dealer’s lot, head for a campground where they hook-up to water, waste, and electrical appendages not realizing that the original intent of RV manufacturers (camper vans, house cars, and other names were used before the industry settled on recreation vehicle or RV) was to build a vehicle that you could “camp” in comfortably and completely independent of outside assistance. That is why they built in large fresh water tanks, waste tanks, and batteries to supply 12-volt power.

The goal of camping in those days was to get out into and enjoy the wonders of nature, it was an escape from the cities and crowds and choking smoke of the industrial age, and to visit America’s parks and landmarks without incurring the expense of pricey hotels (motels hadn’t caught on yet).

But it seems that the tables have turned with the majority of RV users staying most of their nights in full or partial-service campgrounds or RV resorts, often within hearing distance of your neighbor’s coughing, TV, and conversations. Fewer than 20% of RVers “boondock” away from any neighbors or dry-camp (camping without hook-ups) in no hook-up campgrounds with widely spaced sites like the forest service or BLM provide at least some of the time.

One would think that the trend would be in the opposite direction, since water tanks and systems have become larger and more like “home” and waste disposal stations have proliferated beyond campgrounds to rest stops, state welcome centers, truck stops, and other convenient locations making it easy to dispose of waste–unlike the early days of house camping.

joshua_tree_5225The greatest developments, though, were in the power supply, where 12-volt and 6-volt golf cart batteries improved to supply much more and better distributed electrical supply than the original starter battery that supply all the power in addition to hoping there was enough left to start the vehicle after a night or two of camping.

So camping has become a lot easier, more comfortable (often like bringing “home” along with you), more efficient, and with better and readily available support services like campgrounds, designated boondocking areas, RV mechanics and parts stores, books (like my own ebooks) that taught novices how to camp and where to find campgrounds and other camping areas.

So why do most RVers choose to “camp” in little crowded clumps (campgrounds and RV resorts), spend almost as much to stay in RV resorts to sleep in their own house-on-wheels as it does in a motel, and in dense urban locations like Phoenix, Tucson, and Palm Springs in the winter where you can’t even tell by your surroundings that you are even in a desert?

Now don’t get me wrong. Boondockers are not urging the rest of you to necessarily join them, even if there are thousands–millions–of places you can camp on public lands that are opposite of those in the above paragraph. “The more the merrier” is not the mantra of boondockers, who camp the way they do because they don’t want to camp like sardines in a can.

boondocking_colorado3So if you are a boondocker, why do you boondock–or camp without hookups in “primitive” campgrounds–instead of hooking up each night?

And if you don’t boondock, what are the reasons why you choose partial or full service campgrounds all the time instead of spending some nights without hook ups?

It will be interesting to find what you all have to offer, so if you have the time–and inclination–please add your comments below. Thanks.

For more RVing articles and tips take a look at my Healthy RV Lifestyle website, where you will also find my ebooks: BOONDOCKING: Finding the Perfect Campsite on America’s Public Lands (PDF or Kindle), 111 Ways to Get the Biggest Bang for your RV Lifestyle Buck (PDF or Kindle), and Snowbird Guide to Boondocking in the Southwestern Deserts (PDF or Kindle), and my newest, The RV Lifestyle: Reflections of Life on the Road (PDF or Kindle reader version). NOTE: Use the Kindle version to read on iPad and iPhone or any device that has the free Kindle reader app.

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Comments

38 Responses to “Do you use your RV the way it was designed to be used?”

  1. Renee Galligher on November 10th, 2012 5:52 pm

    We prefer to boondock or camp in FS campgrounds. The reason we prefer to boondock is to enjoy the quiet and solitude that is a part of boondocking. Another benefit is the no fee aspect of it. We fully utilize our RV’s systems in comfort and with no problem, whether it’s mid-July to late October or early November. To us, getting away from crowds and being self sufficient is what it’s all about. If we don’t boondock, then camping in FS campgrounds are the next way we like to camp. Most FS CG’s have well spaced sites that offer privacy. En route, we will stay at RV parks but it is not our favorite.

  2. Ralphie Boyo on November 10th, 2012 5:54 pm

    We just added a second deep-cycle battery to our Coachmen Mirada with room for a third. We live in the MH for about six months out of the year, traveling in the southwest and as far east as FL and the eastern seaboard. We love to boondock and hope to find even more great spots on our way from MT to the FL Keys this winter. With no slides to contend with, we can fit comfortably in a lot of more out of the way places. The quiet spots are where life begins…

  3. Beth on November 10th, 2012 5:56 pm

    I’d love to boondock….can’t find anywhere near home to do it. Can’t find access to BLM land with a computer and GPS near Sacramento, CA

  4. George on November 10th, 2012 5:57 pm

    I’d love to boondock but my wife is in fear of “bad people”. Boondocking is probably safer than even flying but if I insisted I may be lonely being by myself.

  5. Ken Fowler on November 10th, 2012 6:05 pm

    Responding to your article on Nov 10th regarding boondocking I have some thoughts. For some of us it has been hard enough to get our wives or significant other to adapt to the RV concept (after 4-5 star hotels) in the first place. And, even now that they have, they appreciate the security of RV Resorts or parks especially when it is just an overnight on a busy cross country trip or in an unfamiliar area. Couple that with the additional exercise of having to locate and drive to a remote, although beautiful spot in the woods sometimes appears as not enough return for the effort put forth. Add to that the possibility of being bogged down in sand miles from assistance creates even more resistance to the boondocking concept. So, how to get started is the question. I have read your book on boondocking and plan to make the move to it in 2013 so may have some new experiences to offer down the road. However you asked for comments as to why more RVer do not indulge in boondocking so here are my thoughts.

  6. kathy on November 10th, 2012 6:19 pm

    We find it difficult to find dump stations, the ones at the waysides seem to be all closed and I have never seen any at the welcome centers with the exception of AL. We now end up at Flying J and pay to dump.

  7. Donna on November 10th, 2012 6:25 pm

    Bob, I love your enthusiasm but stop trying to make everyone leave the campgrounds and head to the wide open spaces where we love to be!

    Just teasing. Love all the info you provide and if it helps encourage someone to go and try boondocking just once, all the better. We love it.

    I do feel for the people who have trouble getting the spouse on board. My kids have grown up camping. My sister and our 4 daughters take an annual “girl” trip, and as we were putting up our tents, a gentleman in a neighboring campsite one year couldn’t help but comment, “Wow, all females? I can’t even get my wife to come with me!”

    RVing is luxury compared to a tent. Maybe that’s what you guys need to do. Take them tent camping and THEN RV shopping. They’ll be onboard real quick!

  8. Marilyn on November 10th, 2012 6:27 pm

    We like to boondock for the solitude and quiet, no noisy neighbors, etc. We just love being in the forest. We have found many beautiful places in California, Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Nevada. The Forest Service campgrounds are nice once in a while, just to recharge the batteries, get water, etc. And the camp hosts are always so kind! We have found plenty of great boondocking places. As far as safety, I’d be much more concerned about staying where there are lots of people and thus more chance of problems. Out in the boonies, if we can’t be seen or we’re off the road enough to not be seen by drivers, we feel pretty safe! And we have a dog who sounds fierce but wouldn’t hurt a flea, so she would scare off any potential problems pretty quickly.

  9. mike on November 10th, 2012 6:30 pm

    now if the industry would just mkae a place for more batteries and add solar panels large enough to handle the rv i would be happy and wouldn’t have to come along and figure it out. i do like the new batteries that are starting to show up litium might just be the naswer for many.

  10. Witt on November 10th, 2012 7:47 pm

    You hit the nail on the head; when I bought my first $RV and went to a campground I thought; Oh no this is not me.
    Later I found “other” places to camp.
    Great article.

  11. Rowdy on November 10th, 2012 7:51 pm

    Well I’ve lived all my life in Alaska and have never even needed a camping spot. Here, roads we don’t need roads I take my RV into some of the most remote areas of Alaska and have even built parts of a log road to just get that little extra distance to the prefect spot. There is nothing like parking at the base of a glacier or on the edge of a river full of salmon. Soon though I plan to head south for winters and boondocking will definitely be part of where I park my RV. Not quiet sure its camping with out boondocking. Its an adventure and how and where you get to is half the fun and I guarantee the views out my window can’t compare! But I suppose hookups? Are nice! lol good article thx.

  12. Greg Gimlick on November 10th, 2012 8:01 pm

    I used to backpack, tent camp, boondock, etc when I was younger. I also spent a career in the Army and they cured me of roughing it….even if boondocking in an RV isn’t exactly roughing it. I prefer full hookups now and especially a/c, but old age and health issues have changed my perspective :-) my bigger issue is dealing with campgrounds full of smoke. But, there is room for everyone in this “hobby/lifestyle” so there’s no reason everyone can’t find the right place.

  13. Dave on November 10th, 2012 8:16 pm

    Not many if any places to boondock in my area ( central IL. ) . I have some rural friends in Missouri that have allowed me to set up on their land back when I had a
    motorcycle and tent and later a popup. Couldn’t get a Class A in those areas without destroying something. I guess my boondocking days really ended when I switched from a motorcycle and tent and purchased a class A. If I lived in the South West or traveled that direction I might still give it a shot.

  14. Mickey on November 10th, 2012 8:20 pm

    Bob, I always enjoy reading your posts. We aren’t getting to camp as much right now as I would like, but soon we will. As to why we don’t boondock, my answer is we don’t just yet because my wife is still learning how to conserve water and holding tank space and I haven’t decided on an electrical supply for us yet. I led Boy Scouts for quite a few years, and learning how to maximize a limited amount of water was a valuable lesson to learn in order to make backpacking trips successful. I can do it, but she needs practice. On the other hand, I admit to being spoiled to a good cup of coffee from our Keurig in the morning, and that requires electricity, so…. genset, solar or batteries? I am still learning. Help me out here if you have any advice!
    Neither she nor I are fearful of remote places, in fact we love them, and as a retired cop, there is always a loaded weapon nearby should a bad guy try to pull any hanky panky. Having lots of people around doesn’t always equal security. In fact, I know of two kidnappings or attempts in the last few years that resulted in unhappy endings right here on I-40. One occurred at a busy rest area in NM and the other at a truck stop near Amarillo. I know many folks don’t want a firearm around, and that’s fine. I just don’t want to skip doing something or staying someplace because I didn’t feel safe. For me a 9mm fixes that issue.

  15. Paul from Arizona on November 10th, 2012 8:48 pm

    Bob, Love your posts and glad you’re having a great time enjoying what you are enjoying. Please realize that we are all snowflakes and we don’t all enjoy the same things in music, movies, food, drink, poitics, geography, etc ad infinitum. I love our posts, but don’t appreciate you trying to get us all to think like you think about where I park my RV. I happen to like 50 amps everynight, and a water and sewer hookup on my drivers side. We do a little Walmart, rest area and Flying J “boondocking” when necessary and that’s good enough. For years we canoed to our spots and slept in tents. Now, we haved moved to a different experience that we love. We are never kept awake with loud neighbors, sirens and barking dogs whether we are in Tucson, Temecula or Palm Springs RV parks. We now like the urban amenities coupled with the significnt lower fees staying in our RV over a neighboring motel or hotel. We love not schleppng in our bags every night and we love knowing that our toothbruish is on the third shelf in the coach every night.
    Bless you and bless your boondocking…and bless my 50 amp outlet

  16. Sue Tsuda on November 10th, 2012 9:00 pm

    I’m 76 – soon to be 77 – and generally travel by my self in a 35 foot class A ‘95 Thor Residency with my dog and a vicious cat. I usually begin the year boondocking at Quartzite with literally hundreds of thousands of others. This year I’m planning on going to telephone Cove on Lake Havasu – if it isn’t raining. Then maybe to a BLM area north of Lake Havasu City. Then who knows? If those ladies who are afraid to boondock even with a husband, advise them to trade in the guy for a big dog or a vicious cat. Works for me and I am afraid I’d shoot myself if I tried to use a gun.

  17. Toni Larson on November 10th, 2012 9:05 pm

    I travel in a RoadTrek (sailingdowntheroad.blogspot.com) and so much prefer boondocking to RV parks. Of course there is the pleasure of saving money but the best part is picking my view. RV parks are far too crowded and the neighbors are usually so close you can hear them snore–ugh! My first choice is to visit one of my many relatives and use their driveway. Next is the organization, Harvest Hosts (I highly recommend them). In a pinch there are Cracker Barrel Restaurants, Sam’s Club or Walmart’s. When I enter a new town I scout out a prime parking spot for the night then I will go sightseeing, go to a movie or restaurant, or find a city park for fixing dinner, going for a walk then watching a video. After 9pm I return to the previously selected spot, park, immediately turn out all lights, close the curtains and go to bed. In a year and 1/2 I have not been questioned or bothered by anyone.
    If I pay for a night it is because I need to dump tanks and take on water. Then I look for a National or State Park or Corp of Engineers campground. They are the best for privacy and scenery and usually cost the least. Am I afraid? Not at all–and I am a single 70 year old woman. BTW, there are quite a few of us out there now.

  18. Chuck on November 10th, 2012 10:16 pm

    I’m 78 years old and have been RVing for 6 years. I’ve been a long-time hiker and backpacker and love to be in nature. So when I bought my RV I specifically bought a small one (22′) that I could use for dry camping. In many nights of usage I’ve never stayed in an RV park and very rarely stay in a forest campground. Even then I almost never use their hookups, preferring instead the simplicity of using my own water and my own house batteries for power.

    I spend most of my nights either in the forests (I live in the Northwest and do most of my RVing in this area) or just overnighting in some small town. Once I mastered the technique of finding a free place to just spend the night I find them mostly easily and all over the place.

    I can be around people and lots of noise and activity at home. I want to use my So instead, for little cost, I can be in nature and enjoy it’s beauties, sounds, silences and serenity.

  19. HJ Lamb on November 10th, 2012 10:17 pm

    No, can’t rely on my Winnebago Via 25Q to get me where I want to go without it breaking down in the power train. Winnebago refers me to Mercedes, Mercedes says it is a Winnebago design fault so I am stuck with it. I can’t afford to pay the ridiculous price of Diesel, the state registration is one of the highest in the nation now and insurance costs me over 1400 a year if I take it out of storage to use it. So what I have is a “hangar queen” that could possibly double as a emergency housing in the event of a natural or man-made disaster so long as it isn’t damaged and manages to get to my home or another usable location without breaking down. So disappointed and am stuick with no alternatives!

  20. Rae on November 10th, 2012 10:27 pm

    I prefer to dry camp because it’s cheaper than paying $500 or more a month at an RV park where you’re crammed in like sardines. I’m looking forward to trying out boondocking on BLM land this winter.

    I finally added a 150W solar panel and 1,000W pure sine wave inverter to my rig to allow me to stay off grid longer. I wish I’d known four years ago, when I started RVing, what I know now and made the investment a lot earlier!

  21. Bernie Martin on November 10th, 2012 10:28 pm

    Thanks for all the great daily blogs. We just started in late 2009 with a older Class A and jumped right into boondocking and living off the grid. First thing we did was put large solar panels on the roof so we could have power.
    There is nothing at all exciting about being in a RV Park with a full house. OMG, you have absolutely no privacy!! Seems the RV next to you is only 5-10′ away.
    We enjoy using our RV as intended – storage tanks and solar power to get away from it all and see this beautiful country.
    Yes, we get “anxious” sometimes on really remote places, but we always make sure it isn’t a “party headquarters” place first. We just use common sense – looking for fire pits with lots of broken bottles is a definite no-no.
    Besides, why would you want to pay all that rent everyday when your RV will let you stay “out” for 5-10 days before needing water/sewer??
    We love the lifestyle of independence and aren’t looking back!

  22. Florida Boy on November 10th, 2012 10:45 pm

    We would love to boondock howeve, we live in North Floriday and travel North Florida, GA, NC, SC and TN. I have been unable to find sutiable places to boondock in this part of the country. If you know of any places in the Northern part of Florida annd Southern GA please provide me a list of them.

  23. Kerry Liliedahl on November 10th, 2012 11:30 pm

    I’m a 61 year old female – have just bought a little house, but was a full timer for the last three years in a 35′ Alpenlite fiver. I’ve spent the last three winters in Quartzsite – boondocking in La Posa North – and I adore it! I have a little ‘community’ of neighbors, but none so close that I feel hemmed in. I’m heading out this yThursday in my classic ‘75 GMC motorhome. It’s not going to be nearly as easy to be in long term. No solar – no separate grey tank, no slides, etc etc etc, but I can’t wait to get out! I love looking out of all my huge windows and seeing nature – works for me! This year will be a challenge, but it’ll all work out. The only time I’ve felt at all creeped out is when the coyotes are out in force and my two little Cavaliers start to bark like mad….it doesn’t happen very often.

  24. Russ on November 11th, 2012 1:18 am

    I would love to boondock out on our own, and we’re adventurous to do just that, having a tow vehicle we could probably run for help in if we needed. I just have NO idea how to find places I can do it at in southern california.

    We go to pay RV parks once a week to have a good worry free night of sleep and hookups to dump and refill. Other than that we either park on streets where friends live and we know we’re not getting in anyone’s way, or parking lots like Camping world or Walmart.

    I’d love to spend a few days out in the middle of ‘nowhere’ on our own though, of course!

  25. coodgerbill on November 11th, 2012 6:05 am

    Boondocking may be the original intent of the RV but there are a lot of us RVers that just love to experience places and things that we only dreamed about. We have an RV that allows us to be “home ” no matter where we are. We have not boondocked in our RV and that is not the reason we bought it. We like going to places that are “interesting” to us (Museums, Historical sights, Cities, etc). The RV gives us the opertunity to see and do things that we could not do when we were working (retired now). We visited with old friends that have moved to other states, played golf (not very weel but at our age …who cares) in may different courses in the midwest, gone to art and historical museums in different states, and sometimes just kicked back and done nothing. At any rate, you get the idea. RVing is different things to different folks, if you like the solace of boondocking…have at it.

  26. Jim G on November 11th, 2012 8:28 am

    In my personal opinion, Bob provides readers with some food for thought. There are and always will be RVers who prefer campgrounds and those who detest them as well. Just like those who drive a big SUV vs. the SMART car crowd. Point is, there is no right or wrong, but an example of the diversity of what RV life can be all about. I have done both and while there are some locales where staying in a campground just makes sense similarly I have deliberately headed off to boondock. So I say, Whatever Floats Your Boat, or RV in this case.

  27. Steve on November 11th, 2012 9:33 am

    I have to agree with Jim G. We do both, and have done both during a trip. It depends on what activity we plan in the location we are at. At the same time we have had good and bad experiences doing either. From the drunken party at a BLM, to the “road” noise in an RV park. Easy fix, turn the key and find another spot!

  28. Drew on November 11th, 2012 9:42 am

    I really enjoyed reading all the responses to this article- thanks Bob. As for us, we prefer a campground we go to often (at least once a month). It is right on the Sacramento River within a marina as well. We have a good time visiting with our friends there and have had two family reunions there where the rv has served a a great home base. This rv park is only forty minutes from home and we can go on very short notice. We have done some limited boondocking as well and love that experience also…I pledge to do more of it in my retirement. We have an rv lot in Lake Havasu as well and we enjoy the area- we are mostly tuned into restaurants, resorts, and other attractions. ( I hate to cook in the rv, and we enjoy being next to the Colorado river when we socialize and dine out). Again, thanks for the article- it was a fun read!

    Drew

  29. MrOAK on November 11th, 2012 9:54 am

    We started RVing to see america after we retired. In the last 5 years we have been in all the lower 48 states and visited most of the major national parks. Along the way we have experienced a number of different local cultures. LA and TX are not the same as the Northeast US (or for that matter the West Coast). Although we have “boondocked” a very limited amount we find it much more convenient and efficient to stay in RV parks. One of the things that have been a pleasant surprise to us is the Music towns/cities across the US. As I write this I am in Gulf Shores AL attending the Frank Brown Songwriters Festival. Wow has it been great. As part of our Fall turnaround cruise (to position the rig in the south before the snow flies) we have toured Philadelphia, been to the National Aviary in Pittsburg (a must see for bird lovers), spent the weekend in Nashville (one of our favorite music towns), had ribs in Memphis, and did MrOAK’s Blues, Gamble, and Golf Tour of Mississippi. Although we have stayed in a couple of unpopulated state parks with a lot of nature around I do like my WIFI and TV (Alabama (roll Tide!) football yesterday and Patriots football today). Currently our “sardine” accommodations are in Gulf Shores state Park. About 20 yards and several large bushes from our camper neighbors. The wind off the lake is much noisier than out neighbors. There are lots of water birds, alligators, and other wild life in the area. The Gulf of Mexico is 1/4 to 1/2 mile away across the lake. One of our favorite campgrounds in the US.
    Although I can understand why a lot of people like to boondock it is not why we RV. When I was younger I wanted a house with a lot of land around it, now I want neighbors. I do have a hard time understanding how one would like to boondock for months at a time. Weekends or a couple of weeks are very understandable but months seem a little isolated.

    MrOAK

  30. Linda on November 11th, 2012 10:24 am

    We tried boondocking in Arizona for Quartzite last winter. That lasted about three days. Dry-camping is for occasional nights spent in rest stops or Walmart when a campground is unavailable, as far as I am concerned. I like to take real showers, watch TV, and do other things requiring electricity and water. To me the RV is a personal hotel and a more comfortable way to travel than flying or driving by car. (I don’t drive; I can, but I won’t.) I listen to audio books and watch the scenery. You might guess that RVing was my husband’s idea, not mine. However, we just upgraded from a ‘98 one-slide diesel pusher to an ‘05 3-slide diesel pusher. More room; more comfort. I’m not against RVing; I’m just not “into” this lifestyle. My blog, incidentally, is called The Reluctant RoVer (http://reluctantrover.segallenterprises.com).

  31. GPruett on November 11th, 2012 12:28 pm

    We use ours mostly like the originals, dry camped, most of the time at an event such as a state fair or airshow. Our first was a 1965, no shower, limited hot water so campgrounds looked good. This is our fourth, a 1999 A and it has everything our house does except Dish network and that is by choice. Having a place to sit down, or lay down for a moment and eat familiar food is worth much more than the extra cost of fuel and driving effort. With the present pricing on campgrounds much of our going will be dry camped, often in a relatives driveway, so most of our spending will be for food and fuel. Campgrounds are nice but the only feature we use often is the leave one take one library of paperbacks or helpful directions to local features. Trying to one up the competition has moved several favorite spots out of our price range which is the campgrounds loss.

  32. Jim Peterson on November 11th, 2012 1:09 pm

    ==========
    With all these comments pro-boondocking, I surprised nobody has mentioned:
    http://www.boondockerswelcome.com/

    They list 619 locations (at member’s homes/property) to overnight for FREE in an RV. For me, it’s not camping if you have to pay. This is an option somewhere between boondocking out in the middle of nowhere (my favorite) or jammed up belly tight in the sardine park where you have to pay (absolute last resort for me). Members are expected to be self-contained but many offer a small power cord, water, wifi access, etc.
    ==========
    sail4free
    ==========

  33. Randy Gomes on November 11th, 2012 2:41 pm

    I love boondocking and have done it several times all over this beautiful country of ours but the one problem for me is in the summer when the temperature outside gets up into the 80s or more and if I run the diesel generator to power the AC units, it gets very expensive at $6.00 per hour. I have many medications inside and need to keep them at a constant temperature 70 to 85 degrees. If I plug into shore power, I can do this at an RV park with no extra cost and leave for the day knowing my meds are safe from intense heat. It can easily get up to 95 degrees inside without the Ac on and putting them in the refrigerator is just as bad at 40 degrees. I have discussed this with my doctors but they have no good answers.

  34. Paul from Arizona on November 11th, 2012 6:37 pm

    There’s a reason we bought a Class A Coach…we love the amenities and perks it provides. We do not go to “campgrounds” but personally prefer the nicer RV Resorts with the many amenities they provide. Just as there are nice friendly boondockers, we also find many like-minded nice people in the RV resorts that have become long-time friends. We have never felt “packed in” at the resorts, nor have we found the “s’mores, hip-hop and beer” crowd prevalent. In prior chapters of our lives we slept in tents with the kids and sat around campfires singing Koombya. In this chapter of life, we prefer the nice RV resorts of Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, California, etc. and enjoy the beautiful views in transit. Sure, we spend an occasional night at rest areas, Walmart, Flying J, Elks Clubs, etc. but these are usually by necessity between major stops.
    There’s a reason there are so many models of Class A, B, C and trailers, fifth wheels, toyhaulers, etc. We are all snowflakes. I just don’t like someone who likes a particular syle of RVing, constantly suggesting that I try a different stye or change mine. I have a saying…”You work hard all of your life…so you don’t have to work hard all of your life.” Kind of Yogi Berra’ish, but we are enjoying this second phase as we have chosen to do so…plugging into 50 amp plug-ins wherever we can.

  35. Elaine Cundiff on November 12th, 2012 9:57 am

    There are so many more RVs on the road each year. If they all liked boon docking there would be no place to go. We are full timers with 725 watts of solar and a 80 gallon fresh water tank. We seldom go to any RV Park except when traveling in the eastern part of the US & Mexico. We have not found places there to boon dock and end up in state parks or RV parks in Mexico. We travel from Alaska to the Keys and Labrador to Baja and the Yucatan. More people could put solar on their rigs if they found the right person to put install it. We have 4 large glass matt batteries squeezed in under the floor. Our son has a solar electric company and did a great instillation.

  36. Beth on November 12th, 2012 1:07 pm

    My husband and I have been full-time for four years now. We are completely self-contained, solar panels, satellite TV, our own hotspot for Internet. We PREFER to boondock. But unfortunately, it has been very challenging finding spots.
    We work. So, we need Internet. And, it seems that all the BLM and FS land in which we find lovely free boondocking spots happen to be in a dead zones. Also, we enjoy lovely views, preferably on a lake or river and typically that is private land or an RV resort. Quartzite doesn’t appeal to us.

  37. Steve on November 16th, 2012 12:27 am

    I just need to find the right person that understands a thing about Boondocking. Someone that realizes that you have to take extra gear (stuff) when you’re out there in the middle of nowhere. Being self sufficient is all about survival. Sure the camper may be cluttered at first but, it all clears out when you’ve arrived at your piece of solitude in the desert. It’s a long long walk for a roll of aluminum foil. Boy Scout Motto: “Be Prepared”! Still rings true to this very day!!!

  38. Brad on November 19th, 2012 10:17 pm

    We have been RVing for about 10 years. We don’t care to boondock. We prefer the conveince of a full service campground. As long as we don’t go to the super luxury campgrounds, we have never had to pay as much as a hotel for a RV site. We travel in the RV to see different parts of the country for much less than flying and staying in expensive resorts.

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