René M. Agredano
Wildfire Evacuation Tips From Creek Fire Workamper Heroes
Nobody ever expects to end an RV trip by fleeing a natural disaster. But these wildfire campground evacuation tips from two workamper heroes can save your life if the worst-case scenario happens during your next adventure.
The Creek Fire in California
It was a busy summer managing the Dorabelle Campground on the shores of Camp Edison in Shaver Lake, California. By September, workampers Bert and Lupe felt they could handle any situation. â€œWe had finally figured out how to deal with all the issues with campers, handle our work load and not wear ourselves out working 10 hours days,â€� said Bert in an email interview.
Fully prepared for a busy Labor Day weekend, the couple saw ash falling from the sky on Friday morning. They immediately knew something was wrong and would soon learn the Creek Fire was exploding less than five miles away. Then, their camp host skills got put to the test to direct an evacuation of the busy campground.
â€œOn Friday September 4th, we started seeing a lot of ash in the morning, all over everything in our campsite. Saturday morning about 6:30 a.m. I noticed it was even worse, and we found out there was a fire close-by that had started overnight on Friday. Lupe, who was in the office that morning, started giving 15-minute reports over the walkie-talkies for us to share with campers.â€�
Preparing for a wildfire evacuation
Their nearest supervisor was twenty miles away at Huntington Lake. He informed Bert and Lupe that a mandatory evacuation was happening in that area, and they should contact the local sheriffâ€™s office for wildfire evacuation tips and procedures.
Lupe and Bert managed the Dorabelle Campground on Shaver Lake.
In preparation for the worst, Bert downloaded an app called Everbridge. This free app is designed to work under
What Can We Expect At The 2021 Quartzsite RV Show?
The largest gathering of RVs and RVers on the planet is on. The 2021 Quartzsite RV show will happen on schedule, according to Kimmy King, producer of the giant nine-day RV showcase in the desert.
How the 2021 Quartzsite RV Show will look different
Each winter, hundreds of thousands of full-time, part-time, and good-time RVers go snowbirding in Quartzsite. â€œThis little town goes from hibernation to a full party!â€� said King. In the RV Lifestyle Podcast #310 with Mike and Jennifer Wendland, King enthusiastically reassured RVers that as of September 2020, the show is still happening.
The show will have a new look in 2021.
For many RVers, winter wouldn’t be the same without strolling through the big tent at the Quartzsite RV Show. But between January 16 and 24, 2021, attendees will experience a slightly modified event.
For starters, the big tent just might have a little more elbow room inside. Canadian border restrictions will prevent thousands of Canadians from joining their American snowbird counterparts this season.
More importantly, show producers say the Quartzsite Sports Vacation and RV Show will look and feel different for 2021 attendees. Staff is working closely with authorities to create a safer event that decreases the risk of virus transmission.
2021 Quartzsite RV Show precautions
In an August press release, the show’s producers say they are encouraging 2021 attendees to stay away on opening day. They also hope most visitors will plan on a weekday visit to the show. This will ease congestion inside the tent. They also say:
“After conferring with the Town Manager of Quartzsite and hearing how they interrupted [sic] the guidelines supplied by the State of Arizona, it was agreed that we had the OK to proceed based on the following precautions that were being taken by Quartzsite Management Corp.
Stress Less Camping Teaches RV Newbies
RVing is fun as it looks, but as any experienced RVer knows, there’s a learning curve. Tony and Peggy of Stress Less Camping want to shorten it for the thousands of new RV buyers hitting the road.
“RVing is in our blood, you could say,” says Tony Barthel. He and his wife Peggy come from camping and RVing families. “Peggy has literally been camping her whole life, starting with having been conceived in a campground,” Tony jokes.
The self-proclaimed RV nerd says his love for the lifestyle also started young. It began when he attended the Los Angeles County Fair as a kid. His parents were dismayed that he would rather tour the RVs than go on the rides.
Stress Less Camping
Today, the Northern California couple publishes StressLessCamping.com. The resource is for all RVers, but geared toward newbies just getting into the lifestyle.
After decades working in the RV industry for Alfa Liesure and Redwood Empire RV in Northern California, the couple brings their knowledge to the web with a podcast, blog, workshops, and a robust social media presence packed with helpful RVing tips. As a way to share their insider industry knowledge with ordinary people, they give newbies a head start on the learning curve of RVing.
The Barthels have a lifelong love affair with RVing.
RVing has been around for generations. But Tony says an entirely new audience is learning the ropes. Some newbies will learn RVing through educational resources like Stress Less Camping. Some will learn through the school of hard knocks.
The Barthels know that the easier path leads to a love affair with the lifestyle. “There are so many aspects to the RV lifestyle that can be challenging for new RVers and turning those experiences around is what weâ€™re all about,” says Tony.
For example, many new RVers
Living, Loving, & Full-Time RVing While Caregiving
When Patrick Lang found a new life through sobriety, he had no idea that the road ahead would include full-time RVing while caregiving for his wife, Colleen. Today, the Wisconsin couple is currently roaming across North America. Wherever they roll, this dynamic duo is showing people itâ€™s possible to enjoy nomadic travel while managing a life-altering medical condition.
A diagnosis like Spinocerebellar Ataxia (SCA) would stop many people in their tracks. But the Langs arenâ€™t like other people. Instead, they decided to explore the country for as long as they could with their two dogs.
â€œIt just felt like the right thing to do,â€� recalls Patrick. While the progressive, degenerative, and often fatal genetic disease slowly robbed Colleen of her ability to speak or walk, they went full-speed ahead and made plans for full-time RVing.
â€œAlthough Colleen was getting the help she needed, something was missing,â€� Patrick writes in their blog, Living on Lifeâ€™s Terms. â€œIn August of 2018, we decided to make the biggest decision of our lives. We decided to sell our house and almost everything we owned so we could travel.â€�
Their last camping trip was fifteen years prior, but a lack of RV experience didn’t stop them. â€œWe knew we had a limited amount of time to do what weâ€™re doing. We do it now or we donâ€™t do it,â€� Patrick said.
Finding a wheelchair-friendly RV
He reached out to Dune Sport in Arizona, an RV manufacturer building custom toy haulers. Then he worked with the company to create an affordable, wheelchair-friendly RV that would accommodate Colleenâ€™s mobility challenges, yet feel like home. For the finale, Dune Sport painted custom graphics that depict the coupleâ€™s philosophy of life.
Dune Sport made their adaptive toy hauler. Image: Patrick Lang
â€œIf there is one word that encompasses what we strive
Florida Singles RV Park Makes For One Happy Family
If you’ve been RVing a while, you know that in general RVing is a couple’s scene. But at one Florida singles RV park, solo nomads seem to be having all the fun.
“We are a friendly, close-knit family who watches out for and takes care of its residents and guests alike,” says Melody Peckham, Community Association Manager at Florilow Oaks RV Park in Bushnell, Florida.
The park started in 1984 when six people who happened to be members of the Loners on Wheels (LOWs) club decided they wanted a home-base RV park for winter. But the LOWs didn’t have enough resources to buy the lush, treed property. That’s when a group of shareholders stepped in to build this unique 55-plus RV park for singles.
Florilow Oaks Singles RV Park caters to solo nomads (but welcomes everyone)
Many LOWs still call the park home. Today, a nine-person board of directors oversees the park. Each year, three directors are voted on to replace members coming off of the Board. Shareholders can buy into the park by purchasing an RV lot. The Park Manager and the Board of Directors oversee that the Rules & Policies are being followed, explains Peckham.
“We were formed as a singles RV park and therefore to become a Shareholder you must be single,” she says. As of 2020, Florilow Oaks has 78 shareholder sites owned by permanent residents, 22 sites that are leased, 17 sites rented on an annual basis, and 30 sites are open for seasonal/monthly/weekly/daily RVers who only want to stay at the park. “Just this past year we opened up five sites that have water and electric only,” Peckman says.
You don’t have to be single to have fun at this RV park, but it helps!
The singles RV park does welcome every
Santa Fe RV Parks In The Heart Of Enchantment
For many people, myself included, Northern New Mexico is the spiritual, artistic, and culinary hub of the Southwest. Over the years I’ve found that RV travels to the land of enchantment are never disappointing. Staying at Santa Fe RV parks we’ve found on Campground Reviews is the best way to experience the oldest capital city in North America.
RVing to the Land of Enchantment, Northern New Mexico
There’s a reason why it’s known as the Land of Enchantment. Go RVing through New Mexico and youâ€™ll quickly discover itâ€™s also a land of contrasts. From the flat, scrubby Chihuahuan desert in the South, to the piney, mountainous forests blanketing the upper half of the state, the variety of terrain and scenery is mind-boggling.
If you visit in winter, stay south of Albuquerque where snowbirds gather. But if your RV trips to New Mexico happen in summer, head north on Interstate 25 to explore the northern half of the state. Thatâ€™s where cooler temperatures prevail and Santa Feâ€™s colorful scene awaits.
Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi. Image: Tourism Santa Fe
My own RV trips have taken me in and around the city more times than I can count. Being a budget-minded traveler, Iâ€™ve discovered plenty of excellent RV camping near Santa Fe, like at Cochiti Pueblo, or in the Black Canyon National Forest campground north of town. I love that these campgrounds are quiet, spacious, and beautiful. But they’re not in Santa Fe.
Santa Fe RV parks give an insider’s experience
Although urban camping isnâ€™t always my thing, reserving a campsite at Santa Fe, New Mexico RV parks is worth the money. When I want to feel the energy and history of the capital city, I stay as close to town as possible to enjoy an insiderâ€™s experience.
Downtown Santa Fe