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Camper with Hensley Hitch

Camping can be oh so much Better!

The image above was probably not your Memorial Day experience. This is usually the photo you see in the RV dealer brochures or the Go Rving ads. But they didn’t lie to you. This type of camping really does exist. No crowds. No noisy neighbors (most of the time). No traffic. Yes, even if you have school-aged children, a peaceful camping experience is possible (and affordable). Here are some tips I wish I’d known 25 years ago when we set out on our camping journey.

  • Okay, this one is really a reminder of one of my “how to buy your first trailer” posts, but now you probably see why: do not buy the biggest trailer you can find. This is not a second home, it’s a place to sleep, cook, and provide a bathroom. The bigger the trailer, the fewer sites you will have to choose from. Your experience is not determined by the amount of space or number of luxuries in the trailer. It’s determined by–say it with me– location, location, location.
  • Get away from state and national parks during holidays or summer weekends. Find the state or national forest campgrounds, county and township campgrounds, and little known private campgrounds. Sure, most of those don’t have electrical hook-ups. You are one generator (or several solar panels) away from camping bliss. Don’t be tethered by your trailer’s electric cord. This requires a bit of scouting while you’re at the “known” campgrounds. Apps like The Dyrt and others are helpful for this as well.
  • If you can swing the vacation time, check in to state and national parks on Sunday and out by Thursday. That’s the quiet time. 
  • If you have the ability to work remote, get more remote. Options like cell boosters and Starlink are making that easier all the time. Then you can squeeze extra days out of your trip by logging on during the day and getting some work done.
  • Take fewer, but longer trips. Yes, this is a repeat of my “gas saving” post. But it applies here as well. You’ll have more days to settle in and relax. You can arrive and leave on low-traffic days (which also saves on gas). And most days will be weekdays, so less crowds (I love sipping coffee under my awning while watching all the weekenders pack up, knowing that the best part of the trip starts now).
  • Extend the camping season. Spring and Fall are the best times to camp. Fewer people. Fewer mosquitos. Less heat. Yes, this means a Friday to Sunday trip if you have children, but it’s worth it.

So that’s my short list of how I made my camping experience more enjoyable (I also got a Hensley Arrow, which definitely improved my stress level). The key is to try new things. Don’t follow the crowds. The whole idea behind the RV lifestyle is to explore. So…explore.

Any other ideas? Head over to the Facebook user’s group and join the conversation. You do not have to own a Hensley or Trailersaver to join the group. See you there!

 

 

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