For the north country, consider renting or being on a boat. It's really the best (only?) way to get a sense of the parks. The BWCA is non-motorized, and requires permits for overnights (tents). The surrounding areas can be just as scenic, although there may be more traffic on the water, and places with shoreline development. Depends on how much wilderness you want.
For the novice to the area, get a good map of the lake you will be on - many have numerous little islands, and it is very easy to get turned around and confused as to how to get home. Don't go too far!
A number of places offer boat rentals, or are near outfitters that rent canoes.
As far as the suggested Lake Kabetogama - I spend a week there every June. Part of Voyageurs National Park. One section is commericial (where resorts/private homes are), but the majority is wild. There are pontoon sightseeing trips offered by the Park Service. The trip to the Kettle Falls Hotel is recommended. About 95 miles from Ely. Similar to BWCA, but different! It's also about 30 miles from International Falls, so if you want to say you've been to the place that is frequently the coldest in the US....
I have the 2 older equivalents to their current x-900 in my boat for trolling (true deep cycle, group 31, 220RC). Going on year 6, with no issues. Great batteries. But I had to switch to AGM as acid splash out was an issue when getting pounded going over waves. Very hefty price for those.
Bear Head Lake State Park near Ely has been awarded as one of the best in the nation. But - the loops can be narrow with trees and tall brush, making backing a bigger rig challenging. I struggled with my 5th wheel. Best to call them for advice first, and then see what you can reserve.
Fall Lake Campground (NF) is another great spot. A little better for bigger rigs, but again you should spend a bit of time researching then reserving - some say no issue and love it, some say too tight and confining.
... Most city's chlorinate the crud out of there water which in turn is going into your holding tank taking care of anything that might be in there.
Um, not so. Yes, they chlorinate, but the residual is only barely enough to deliver "sanitized" water to your tap, if there is any at all. As a pool owner, I test to keep my pool at 2-3 parts per million of chlorine. Tap water tests out at zero. Probably not actually zero, but the test kit doesn't measure such minute amounts. Case in point - on a warm day, if I fill the pool using municipal water, it can cloud up in as little as a half-day from bacteria, if I don't add additional chlorine. RV systems aren't open to the world, so there is little contamination to encourage growth, but neither is there anything left in tap water to discourage it, either.
BTW - fun fact: Chlorine itself has a pretty weak smell. When it combines with other chemicals ("bugs", etc.) it produces chloramines, which have a very strong smell. That's one of the clues that a swimming pool needs MORE chlorine, as the active stuff has been used up. It's easy to get to very unsafe levels in a pool ("shocking' the pool), and not have any smell at all.
In the RV case, smelling it coming out of your taps is the indicator that it's done it's job. And yes, regular bleach smells, because due to dilution, storage, and age it already has formed some chloramines in the bottle, along with the more concentrated "active" chlorine.
The black tank part has been answered, but I'd add this about sanitizing the water:
While generally you are dealing with a mostly closed system, after a pretty short period (a day or less), any treated water can have whatever sanitizer in it degraded/used up (usually a very small amount of chlorine in a municipal system). Even a bottle of pure bleach loses it's ability to sanitize moderately quickly after opening. So, start off the season by sanitizing the entire system, just to get it as sanitary as you can.
Water in the system can get a bit funky after some time left standing. How long depends on the source, and the temperatures. If you are only using "city water" from campgrounds, just run the taps for a bit when you first hook up. If depending on your water tanks, drain them if they will be unused for a period of time (I do it after every trip). Note that the hot water heater stores a few gallons, and it can take a lot of flushing to cycle new water for old. I also drain mine, if I won't be using the camper within a week or so. This can be one major cause of the dreaded "sulphur smell" that occurs in hot water lines. Those bugs just love the toasty warm heater water.
The good news, if you are using "city water" either directly or from your tanks, there's nothing bacteria-wise that will make you sick. Worst is that it may smell or taste icky if it does grow something due to disuse. Well water/lake water from a "low overhead" country campground can more suspect, but even there, the "bad" things, like e. coli, don't grow well in the kinds of water systems used in RV's. So if you didn't get sick while camping, you won't afterwards.
Thanks to all for the information! While I'm not terrified of mountain driving, I think it may be a better plan to take an alternative route to Durango, stay there a few days, and drive the Million Dollar Highway in just the tow vehicle.
Considering traveling through this area, towing my 30' fifth. My edition of "The Mountain Directory" makes it sound a bit tough to navigate. While not very experienced in mountain driving, I've done a little. Most notably Hwy 14 (not 14A!) through the Bighorns, and some over the coast ranges in CA. Nothing more than 6% grades before, unless it was a very brief section of slightly more...
For those familiar with the route, how "white knuckle and red hot brakes" will this be? (Yeah, I use engine braking, but with 10-15 mph hairpins....)
You have a 5th Airborne, which uses essentially an airbag in the pin box to minimize road shocks. It is adjustable by adding/removing air pressure. See the manual. It sounds like you may need to add more air, and that some up/down movement is to be expected so that you don't have as many road shocks transmitted to the tow vehicle. Call Reese first to verify whether the amount you observe is normal, and what adjustments they suggest if it is not.
Not sure what version of Excel you have, but check your settings. On Excel 2010 & 2013:
File > Options > Formulas > Workbook Calculation > Automatic.
You can also manually update the formulas by pressing F9.
Although I've been out of the game for the last 2 years, when I was doing tech support, this was a very common issue, no matter what version of Excel. Bwanshoom gives the correct answer as to how to resolve the problem. Here's a link with a more detailed description/solution for later versions of Office:
I always blamed it on users who were a bit click happy - moving a little too fast and accidentally disabling calculation, when they meant to do something else.
AND, to add confusion, Norcold has issued recalls for their older models (as detailed above) that they fix and extend coverage on. But the suit is for newer models that have not been recalled. There have been an evolving series of these class actions to have Norcold pay up, and it gets complicated tracking the variations as to what is the most current. Add to it, several of the models have not been recalled, begging the question as to how safe/unsafe they may really be. All we know for sure is that it benefits the lawyers to round up as many people as possible.
I've considered a similar solution. But, be leery when going to high capacity Lithium. Look at the problems with burned up Hoverboards. And if used for flying, better check with the airline - many ban bigger lithiums due to the potential for fire.
They can be used safely, but you have to do the homework to verify it is a reputable manufacturer, that is adhering to high engineering standards. Many of the China versions are not even close in minimal safety considerations.
Small AGM power packs are a much, much safer solution....
Wow, thanks for the resources/suggestions all! Yep, there are an awful lot of possibilities. The plan, such as it is, is to spend a week + going from Minn. through Colorado, then 2 + weeks in Utah. Then whatever on the return home. So many choices, so little time.
Any advice for the return home? I'm unsure about mountain passes, and the potential for bad weather in Oct. If I push the trip more into October, then Utah may not be so hot. But we've been known to get blizzards near Halloween in Minn. I am thinking of taking the long way - across through Texas, and then straight up to Minn. Too cautious?
We're looking at a late Sept/early Oct. trip to Southern Utah for the first time. Can spend 2-2 1/2 weeks in the area. Towing a 5th, would prefer CG's with full services (or at least power), but can get by for 2 days at a time boondocking before needing to dump/fill/recharge. Will have 2 medium size dogs with, don't mind leaving them for several hours (temps permitting, of course) but would prefer having them with. Looking for suggestions as to places to base camp for some days at a time. Of course Bryce and Zion are on the list, Moab looks interesting. NP experience might be limited, due to the dogs. Thinking of Kodachrome as one possibility to stay at. Easy biking in some spots would be nice. Hiking with the dogs, of course. Off hitch drive around sightseeing.
What's your suggestion for newbie's to get a decent overview of the highlights of the region?
We're contemplating a trip from the DC to southern CA and then up the Pacific Coast to OR. We generally travel without reservations and I'm not too concerned about heading west. But I am worried that it might be difficult finding sites along the PCH in June. Any advice? Thanks.
Your "no" reservations plan will result in the following possibilities:
1. severely limit/alter your RV park choices
2. add a level of anxiety or frustration during your travel as you wonder about your next day's reservations.
3. June will be the HIGH season for other tourists and local people who will impact your traveling and sight seeing activities.
The Calif. and Oregon coasts are high tourist attractions any time of the year but especially during the summer months. Reservations do not limit your RV travels or choices. Reservations are only plans to deviate from--You can cancell or change reservations!!!!
X2 to this!
Did the trip a couple of years ago. We were able to find spots, but it was a matter of researching/reserving a couple of days ahead, and be willing to either find State Parks that were inland and/or finding a private CG. Many is the place (public and private) we would check that was completely full. It was tight, and there were some high anxiety days where I was convinced we would just have to keep driving.....it also meant many times that if we found a spot, we might have to leave no matter what, as it was reserved for the coming weekend, etc. Not fun burning a couple of hours every day or three trying to find the next place we could stay.
BTW - we learned after the fact - travel North to South, if you can. There are sights you won't see being on the other side of the road, and many ocean side pull outs that you can't get to from the north bound lane.
What is CCC? And please tell me more about the CG power pole. Is there one at every site? Is it just a 110 power plug?
At every campsite that offers electricity is a post (power pole) with outlets. Depending on what you pay for, it may have both 50 amp and 30 amp receptacles. Cheaper sites will only have plug in's for 30 amp. Usually, but not always, there will be an additional "regular" house plug receptacle too.
You can (and should) buy adapters to allow you to "downsize" your plug to fit into smaller receptacles. Of course, doing so means you will be more restricted in what you can run. Campground "power poles" typically have breakers next to the receptacle, so if you have downsized and use too much electricity, you may have to go out to the post and turn the breaker back on.
Beware adaptors that allow you to plug your 50 amp plug into both the 30 amp receptacle and the "house" receptacle at the same time. One would think that 30 amp + 20 amp would give you 50 amp, but it's not the same, and at best you'd still be limited as to what you could use. At worst, you may hurt your trailer/electric items.
Me and my wife are new to camping.We just bought a 15 ft travel trailer,I would think we need electric,and water hookup at the very least.
My question is being such a small trailer do we want to be with the pop ups and tents,or the big Class A and 5th wheels and how looking at map would we know which usually go where,also which are more wilder louder
With water and electric comes RV's the same or bigger than you. Add in sewer, and then the even bigger boys are in the neighborhood. Then add pull through sites which attract bigger still, capping with the 50amp pull throughs tending toward the largest.
Wilder/Louder is the luck of the draw, and doesn't seem to correlate with the size of the camping equipment at all.
Interesting take on the N2 debate:
But, for regular use, if not a race car or an aircraft....doesn't seem to be an advantage.....
Just got the replacement for my Dezl 760 - the RV 660. Yes, while screen size is smaller, it still seems big enough, so it is not the big downgrade I feared. Have not played with it enough to give it a full test yet, but did note that the latest update did claim to include propane restrictions - which were very lacking in the older 760!
I used to be in charge of credit card processing for a very large institution. EVERY place puts a hold on your card (and on any kind of card). That happens as soon as the card is swiped. If the amount due is known, then that is the hold. If not, then it is based on either the retailer policy or their credit card processor policy. The hold reserves the money until the merchant "settles", usually overnight - they send all their transactions in a batch to the bank (done usually automatically by the system). That batch gets processed, and any holds are replaced with actual charges. BUT - if there is an issue, and the retailer doesn't settle (or has device issues), then no real charges take place. Eventually, as determined by the processor, any holds that did not have charges are then released, and you have your money back. May not mean you get away free, as they can come back later and hit your account again, after the hold expired. But sometimes.....
So, if you notice "holds" larger than your purchase, especially the next day (or longer), the usual issue is that the merchant didn't send their charges through in a timely manner, and things are waiting to be cleared up. Or, like a hotel, they put the hold on, and don't actually charge until the full amount is known many days later.
Beware the truck pumps - those guys can see holds of up to $500 at some stations!
Not towing, I get the sticker mpg figures for my truck..
Towing, it's 10 mpgs.
I'm supposed to get 13 city, 21 hwy 15 combined.
That's pretty much what I get.. Yes, I'm going by the computer and it's not that far off from the fill ups. A couple of tenths either way for usually a 20+ gallon fill up (36 gallon tank).
I know most of you only want "hand calculated" figures, so blast away, I don't care.. :) I round 'down' anyway.. ;)
Pretty close to mine, too. Towing about 10.5, City mixed 15 to 17 (winter vs summer), about 19-20 unloaded open highway. This with the 3.73 gearing and the rest of the Max Tow/Max payload upgrades.