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 > Your search for posts made by 'Desert Captain' found 178 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
RE: Blue Ridge Parkway - Early April

Not many campgrounds open that time of year especially right on the Parkway but if you venture off there should be some available. For those who drive down the middle due to low tunnel clearance PLEASE DON"T. If you cannot safely/comfortably fit within the posted heights while staying in your lane you DO NOT belong on that road. Can you tell I like to ride motorcycles and NEVER, EVER cross a double yellow line for any reason regardless of what I am driving. Want a cheap thrill? Look up from your vehicle/motorcycle/RV and spot someonel 6' or more into your lane coming right at you. BTDT and it falls somewhere between vehicular assault and attempted manslaughter. Not every rig safely fits on every road... seriously! :S
Desert Captain 02/23/21 01:04pm Roads and Routes
RE: It fits....

Op here again with an update... My new {to me} Can Am Spyder has been a hoot to ride but was a bit twitchy especially on the two lane twisties here in the mountains. A little research online indicated that I was a candidate for a Laser Alignment as they come from the factory with a pretty basic set up. About ten days ago I made an appointment at Ride Now Surprise to get the alignment this morning. They booked me for 0900 so I could ride in and wait for it, takes about an hour. Well ten days ago the forecast was for a morning low in 40's and that posed no problem, I would just bundle up and take full advantage of the heated grips. It is 107 miles from Payson to Surprise but as I was very happy with the deal they made me I committed to coming back to them for service despite there being a couple of closer dealerships. By yesterday afternoon the forecast had changed radically and not in a good way... They were calling for a low in the upper 20's and the thought of riding in that just was not an option. So yesterday afternoon I hooked up my Ridgeline to the cargo trailer and loaded the Can Am. At 0615 this morning it was 24 degrees and we just rolled out of the driveway, by 830 we were unloading at the dealership after a nice toasty cruise down off the mountain. Just got home a couple of hours ago, off loaded the Spyder and took it for a test ride... WOW! the difference was day and night. The bike is so steady with way more improvement than I ever had hoped for. The bill was $158 which I was happy to pay. The point being if you are considering adding a utility trailer to your fleet take a look at cargo trailers and all that they bring to the trailering equation. I find so many ways to use it and use it often. It continues to provide me with options that other trailers simply could not. Works for me! :B
Desert Captain 02/19/21 02:42pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: It fits....

What has been your experience riding on three compared to two wheels Keep in mind I have only logged 500 miles over the last couple of months but... No two machines could be much more different than my Indian Springfield and the Can Am Spyder. The Indian weighed 875# but was arguably the best handling bagger Indian or a anyone else for that matter ever built. It was smooth and powerful, a virtual "Torque monster" that you could short shift all day long and still scoot but... it was getting to a lot to handle and the stability of the Spyder is awesome. Having reverse is a lot more convenient than you might think and that is another feature that I love on the Spyder. The Spyder is even smoother with plenty of power and much quieter. The stability of the Spyder is great but the steering is very sensitive and takes a little getting used to. The creature comforts of both are fairly even with air suspension but the Spyder is adjustable on the fly. The heated grips for both driver and passenger on the Can Am are awesome and though I never use it the audio system on the Can Am is very nice. Two very significant differences on the Can Am are the auto transmission with a paddle shifter. You manually upshift but downshifting can be fully automatic or you can manually downshift anytime you feel the need and the auto trans is buttery smooth up or down shifting. The other is the electric adjust on the fly windshield which I did not think I would use much but it gets used on all out every ride depending on conditions. Also the Can AM as noted has a ton of storage and my bride finds the Can Am even more comfortable than the Indian which she loved {we put 26,000 miles on the Indian in 2.5 years often doing 400+mile days.} I am still early into the learning curve with the Spyder but having ridden more than 100,000 miles in the last 7.5 years on motorcycles adapting to the new ride has been nothing but fun. :B
Desert Captain 02/07/21 11:43am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Moving on up... to the mountains!

No snow machine for here as the heavy snow only comes every few years but... My Rzr SXS was amazing in the snow. When I had 2' covering my 80 yards of driveways {2} it rolled over and through like a champ. Repeated overlapping two tracks allowed me to pack it all down enough that my AWD Honda Ridgeline in snow mode could get in and out without any issues. Then I took the Rzr out on the local {dirt} back roads and trails and had a blast, never knew how much fun donuts could be. :B
Desert Captain 02/07/21 11:04am General RVing Issues
RE: It fits....

In addition to the twin saddlebags there are front and rear trunks that hold a ton of gear. We haven't gotten to ride as much as we like due to the weather but are looking forward to spring, summer and fall. We will be heading up tot the Rockies of southern Colorado this summer for our annual camp/ride trip with a week or so on the San Juan River at the Riverside RV Park just outside of Pagosa Springs. Here is a shot taken on a previous trip when we were riding the Indian: https://i.imgur.com/uApnkMul.jpg :B
Desert Captain 02/07/21 09:38am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Moving on up... to the mountains!

Op here again with another Payson update... Under the heading of careful what you wish for we got snow. The 3" shown in the pic in my previous post became 6" by morning, a foot by Monday and 2'+ on Tuesday morning with the temperature 18 degrees. The heavy wet snow wreaked havoc on the entire area with Oak and juniper trees being the primary victims. 8 to 10" limbs snapped like twigs under the weight and I lost 2 Oaks and a Juniper with half a dozen others severely damaged. This pic was taken Tuesday morning and you can see some of the damaged/down trees over my right shoulder: https://i.imgur.com/EJW5zpxl.jpg This is a shot of the front yard with the two Oak stumps and piles of trimmings: https://i.imgur.com/laa9l9jl.jpg Once the snow began to clear, which took about ten days we went to work with chain and pole saws to clear the damage. I was able to salvage a full cord of nice hardwood from the Oaks and Junipers and we ended up with half a dozen very large piles of trimmings. Fortunately we have a 6 X 10 {7' tall} cargo trailer and my trusty dusty Honda Ridgeline. I was having coffee one morning when I saw a neighbor out in our front yard going to town with his chainsaw. I went out and he said it looked like you could use some help then told me where I could dump it all for free just 2 miles down the road, ya gotta love this community. The city of Payson opened up the dirt parking lot at the Rodeo Grounds right in town as a free brush pile drop off saving everyone the 12 mile drive out to the land fill and they were doing land office business all weekend. We completely filled the back of the truck and the trailer and that was just the first trip as several piles remained. We managed to nearly fill the trailer on the second load but that finished off the last of the trimmings. Here is a shot of the first load: https://i.imgur.com/4dlkVHwl.jpg The landscapers/tree trimmers here in town are backed up 6weeks or more and there are damaged trees everywhere you look. Paying it forward I cleaned up a couple of downed trees for my elderly neighbors property pending the arrival of his tree guy. My bride and I, ages 70 and 69 are moving a little slowly this morning, the Jacuzzi and Ibuprofen are our friends but it felt good to get it all done and we are looking forward to our next Payson adventure. :B
Desert Captain 02/07/21 09:13am General RVing Issues
It fits....

For the last 7 years we have made towing a motorcycle behind our 24' class C a huge part of our RV experience. We head out seeking not only great camping but the finest motorcycle roads the west has to offer. We set up in a nice CG and roll out every morning exploring, often one of the many national Parks {did Yellowstone and Grand Teton last June} and trust me, the best way to see any NP is from the back of a bike but I digress. About a month ago I made the switch from my Indian Springfield to a Can Am Spyder. My bride and I are 70 and 69 years old and pushing an 875# motorcycle was likely to become problematic at some point so reluctantly we moved to the stability and comfort of three wheels. My research included a lot of measuring to be sure our new ride would fit in our 6 X 10' cargo trailer and it was going to be close. I moved the cable anchors on the load ramp as far outboard as possible buying me another 2" and that seems to have made all the difference. With winter weather keeping the Spyder garage bound today was my first opportunity to verify it would fit in the cargo trailer and happily it does... just barely. I have about 1" of clearance getting past the cables and after that it's all good. The cargo trailer keeps the Spyder out of the weather as well as out of the view of the bad guys, nice to have a custom garage that follows the coach like a faithful puppy. The Spyder weighs 998# and the trailer is 1200# keeping us well under the GVWR of 2,990. Now we can look forward to continuing our formerly 2 wheel/now 3 wheel adventures, returning to the all of the comforts of home in our coach after every ride. https://i.imgur.com/q8fBaXul.jpg https://i.imgur.com/X17dxkjl.jpg https://i.imgur.com/PmQcRmDl.jpg :B
Desert Captain 02/06/21 09:01pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Price increase at our KOA

Just another reason I will never stay at any KOA {again - did once}. They are consistently the highest priced parks in any area, usually located on a very busy {noisy} highway and often adjacent a major rail line. Yes, they have nice amenities for kids but other than that... {Mrs. Lincoln, how did you like the play?} I'm not sure how they stay in business and with practices such as the OP's they probably won't. :S
Desert Captain 02/01/21 01:48pm RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: Moving on up... to the mountains!

OP here, we finally got the snow we had been hoping for, 3+" of the heavy wet stuff last night. the forecast is calling for another 15 -" over the next 24 hours. Here are a couple of shots, back yard and front: https://i.imgur.com/9kzP1Oml.jpg https://i.imgur.com/E8HlXs6l.jpg We hit the jacuzzi lastnight as the snow was falling with the temp right at 32, will be doing that again soon. Looking forward to a nice ride in the snow in our Rzr before it gets too much deeper. :)
Desert Captain 01/25/21 08:41am General RVing Issues
RE: Extended warranty

Another thought... Years ago I worked as a commercial boat Captain for an independent boat towing service {like AA for boats - Vessel assist is the big dog in that industry}. The business model for all of the towing services, much like ERS and others is based upon actuarial tables that tell them how many customers will require their services. For most of these businesses the number is 92%... that will never have a claim and their premiums are pure profit. The other 8% will benefit but never underestimate the ability of the insurer {or lack of a better term} to dodge and mitigate their costs... at your expense. Bottom line is that industry wide roughly 9 out of 10 consumers never need this coverage so like the man said... Do you feel lucky well do ya? :B
Desert Captain 01/12/21 07:40pm Beginning RVing
RE: Extended warranty

A lot of good advice here and I agree do not buy the usually worthless warranty. If you do they control all repairs when problems arise... and they will. If you self insure by setting aside money instead of giving it to a third party you decide when and where any repairs get done and they will be working for YOU! This is especially important when you are out on the road vs at home... you do plan to be out on the road, right? There are lots of stories on the Forums about folks who have been waiting for months for dealer/warranty repairs to be completed. If you are not locked in by any warranty, extended or standard you will be free to take your rig elsewhere. This method does require the discipline to a actually set aside some additional monies every month in order to grow the fund. Interest rates are currently a joke, you will be lucky to get one quarter of a percent but set the money aside anyway. Stay on top of preventative maintenance and read any warranty that a new unit comes with very carefully so you will know what is {not much} and what is not actually covered. Good luck. :C
Desert Captain 01/12/21 01:50pm Beginning RVing
RE: Enlarging my parking for the motorhome...

OP here with a final update. After compacting the new pad several times, first with my Rzr, then the Honda and finally with 11,000# of coach and gently wetting it down a couple of times it was down about an inch from completely level with the existing concrete driveway. Nothing another half ton of gravel would not cure... so off to the yard onece again. I went with the concrete rock this time, all rock/gravel {no dirt} and aesthetically it nearly matches the driveway. After spreading and leveling I rolled the coach up and down it at least a dozen times and then parked it using a pair of yellow Leggo blocks under each of the passenger side duallies. The coach is now dead level not only from side to side but front to back as well. My 25,' 30 amp extension cord is due in today and will enable me to connect to the dedicated 30 amp outlet my electrician installed at the front corner of the garage. The coach now sits 12' back down the driveway from the front of the garage and I gained a full 3' of additional clearance on the south side. Like the man said... "Mission Accomplished". My bill for the beams, hardware and rebar at Home Depot was $245. The gravel yard got me for an other $28 and I get my Ibuprofen for free from the VA. :B Here are a couple of pics: https://i.imgur.com/ZFekzYvl.jpg https://i.imgur.com/cv1ovkKl.jpg I
Desert Captain 01/08/21 11:38am General RVing Issues
RE: Enlarging my parking for the motorhome...

The Ridgeline is a a lot of truck, plenty of payload, 18" wheels, AWD that rides and handles like an Accord with pretty much the same economy/performance. "Straps kinds look "RedNeck". Hey, I resemble that remark. :) Actually I am a liberal redneck... I get to annoy everybody! :S
Desert Captain 01/01/21 10:54am General RVing Issues
RE: Enlarging my parking for the motorhome...

Yes, we live in Payson Arizona which is a smallish town, probably with less than 20,000 people. We are at 5,000' but the Mogollon Rim is nearly 8,000' and just 30 miles up highway 260. As far as zoning or parking restrictions that just does not happen up here. Probably 7 out of 10 homes have an RV, a couple of utility trailers not mention ATV's/UTV's {we have my Honda Ridgeline, my brides Toyota Solara, the Can AM Spyder, our Class C, the Rzr SXS and my cargo trailer}. The best part is that they all reside on our property, no more shelling out $100+ a month for storage and being told when and for how long I could park in front of my home When we paved our driveways there were no permits required, up here it's your land and Zoning is almost an urban legend. :B One of my major motivations for the move was to get as far away from an HOA as possible... and 175 miles seems to be working. Here are a couple shots of my 17 Ridgeline, GVWR of 1,477# loaded with 2,100# of gravel. The loader at the gravel yard got a little carried away when I asked for half a ton. I still had to go back for another half ton as the 2,100# wasn't enough and the truck came through it all just fine. Having a tail gate that wings out as well as dropping down enabled me to just back it up over the hole and drop the gravel using just a rake, no shoveling involved. https://i.imgur.com/x7ZHF1Hl.jpg https://i.imgur.com/xYFBB0ol.jpg :C
Desert Captain 01/01/21 10:06am General RVing Issues
RE: Moving on up... to the mountains!

OP here with a final update... We have been in our new home for 3 months and are loving it more everyday. Most of our upgrades and improvements {remodeled kitchen - new cabinets and granite countertops, some serious landscaping along with a few electrical upgrades - dedicated 30 amp hook up for the coach, expanded parking for the rig, paving both driveways etc.} have been completed. Yesterday afternoon we closed escrow on the sale of our former home in Tucson. The proceeds of the sale were $245 shy of what I paid for the new place so it is all good. It took a couple of months to get a solid offer but with Covid-19 raging and the election in full swing I really did not expect much activity until mid November. While I was sure it would sell without any major issues it sure is nice to have that event in the rear view mirror and we can now focus 100 percent of our energy on our new place. :C
Desert Captain 01/01/21 08:41am General RVing Issues
Enlarging my parking for the motorhome...

Since moving to our new home in Payson AZ I've been parking our 24' Class C along the south edge of our concrete driveway {the ability to park the toys on our new .57 acre property being a huge benefit}. Unfortunately with the coach there our access to the attached garage is somewhat restricted. To gain more clearance I had been trying to come up with some more space but there is a fairly steep slope that falls away from the edge of the concrete driveway. I finally came up with a solution. I dug down 3 to 6" along the south edge of the slab and framed the opening with 8', 6 X 6" beams creating a "box" for lack of a better term that was 24' long and 3'wide. I secured these beams by drilling and driving 2' pieces of 3/8" rebar 18" into the ground and tying the beams together with steel straps and brackets. I had to remove nearly 2 tons of compacted clay with an assortment of some fairly large rocks that were embedded on the slope. The last step was to backfill my "box" with 1.5 tons of gravel which I compacted by driving over with the Rzr SXS. I still need to do some additional compaction and wet it all down a couple of times but once the passenger side tires are sitting on 2 X 10's the coach should be dead level with the existing slab. Here is a shot of the finished project: https://i.imgur.com/wdftql4l.jpg As you can imagine this was a lot of very physical labor for this 69 year old but I have succeeded in improving my garage access. Here is a shot of the coach in its new parking location. As you can see the the garage has a much easier entrance and though smallish handles my new Can Am Spyder along with my brides car: https://i.imgur.com/fANckVLl.jpg :C
Desert Captain 01/01/21 08:31am General RVing Issues
RE: Installing a safe?

i installed a small safe in our Class C 7 years ago shortly after buying the coach. It sits in the back of our small closet, waist high and is easy to access. I through bolted it using large ss flat washers and 5/16' double nutted bolts. Could someone with tools and time get it out... probably but it will be a PITA and require making a lot of noise {mostly the profanity from the thief}. :B When traveling in gun restrictive states like California my pistol rides in the safe {the rest of the time it is always within arms reach as I have a carry permit with reciprocity in 37 states} but I know that my wife can retrieve it in about 30 seconds while I am still behind the wheel as it has four keystroke access should we need it quickly in an emergency. We also keep cash, passports, electronics etc., just about anything a quick smash and grab their would be seeking. I can't imagine not having the safe as we travel extensively and are often well off of the grid in remote locations. :C
Desert Captain 12/28/20 07:58am General RVing Issues
RE: Life expectancy of a small C class.... Ex Rental

No folks, when I speak to renters I'm not about showing them "how dumb they are", give me a break, sheesh. By your interpretation I guess anyone who shares information on this Forum is "trying to show folks how dumb they are?" I enjoy meeting folks and sharing information. Local sites to see, places we have been, preferred routes etc. It has been done for me by others and I consider sharing good information as paying it forward. I also share my firewood especially with folks traveling with kids but I digress. Not once have I encountered a renter who had even heard of Tow Haul much less been provided with any of the many benefits of its use. Use it or don't your call. I would not buy a former rental anything, car, RV, boat as I have witnessed too much abuse over the years. If it works for you have at it. :R
Desert Captain 12/15/20 07:44am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Life expectancy of a small C class.... Ex Rental

I make it a point to chat with RV renters we encounter when out traveling. I've spoken with dozens over the years and not one was ever told about the use of Tow haul. When I explain how it works they are usually dumbfounded. The point being that motorhomes that never use TH slowly but surely cook their transmissions. Just sayin... As always... Opinions and YMMV :R It may surprise you That Cruise America Interestingly, Tow/Haul mode is engaged by DEFAULT automatically upon starting, to change this a module must be changed. You are right... that would surprise me. "Tow haul is initiated when you start the Majestic 19G (presumably on other models, too), and if most renters are as ignorant as everyone makes them out to be, they would have left it in tow haul mode." In talking to a number of renters about Tow Haul we usually end up in the drivers seat where I show them the button on the end of the shift lever that activates TH. Funny thing is it always functions just as it should...on and off. :S :R
Desert Captain 12/14/20 07:52pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Campgrounds around Zion national park

We always stay at the Watchman CG inside the park adjacent the visitors center and the shuttle station. This will require making reservations well in advance though you can sometimes get in at the last minute due to cancelations. It is a very nice CG right on the Virgin River and while they do not have "full" hookups they do have 30 amps, flush toilets and water spigots throughout the CG and no, you cannot fill your tanks in the CG, leave the "water thief" at home" and utilize the dump station facilities, a full service two lane inside the CG. The fees are reasonable {a geezer card will get you in for half price}, especially compared to the commercial RV parks nearby that are outrageously priced 365. Being able to just walk to the shuttles and then ride anywhere in the park is priceless. If you have to drive in get ready for a long expensive wait and parking in the park itself disappears quickly during the busier months and driving up into the park is restricted to outright prohibited for much of the year. Zion is amazing, probably my favorite NP but it is so much better when you stay at Watchman. As always... opinions and YMMV. :C
Desert Captain 12/14/20 08:53am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
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