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Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives

| Updated Jan 17, 2018

Among a host of topics, today’s episode features a “For Women Only” advice section from Jennifer for RV wives. Now I think husbands will also benefit to this but what she’s done is address a bunch of concerns that RV women have raised with her as she has met them in our travels across North America.

She alleviates most of these concerns with some very practical advice. That’s coming up in our interview of the week time.

But also this week. Your RV questions and comments, RV tips, a great off the beaten path destination to put on your bucket list, and more RV shows this coming weekend than you can shake a stick at. This is the heart of the RV show season and do we have a long list for you to consider!

Click the player below to Listen Now or scroll down through the show note details. When you see a time code hyperlink, you can click it to jump directly to that segment of the podcast.


Show Notes for Episode #175 Jan. 17, 2017 of Roadtreking – The RV Podcast

WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”2:24″]

Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives 1We’re getting ready to head to the Great White North of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and, specifically Tahquamenon Falls State Park where there is nearly three feet of snow on the ground. We’ll be joined by dozens of their RVers, who’ve made their way to our annual Winter Campout. We’ll have a Facebook Live report sometime mid-Friday afternoon on our Facebook Page at  If you click like on the page you should get a notice when the report will go live but I’m shooting for about 3PM eastern January 19.

After that, we’ll be heading south, to much warmer climates.  We’ll be at the Jacksonville Florida RV Show the afternoon of Fed. 11… and then Feb 12-16 we’ll be at another Roadtreking Gathering, this one at the Manatee Springs State Park in Florida.

For a full list of all the gatherings we have on tap for this year, go to

This portion of the Podcast is brought to you by Campers Inn, the RVer’s trusted resource for over 50 years, the nation’s largest family-operated RV dealership with 19 locations and growing

 JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”8:54]

One topic RVers love to talk and learn about is cooking and eating. Finding good and easy to prepare meals on the road can be quite challenging.     Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives Only

One method that has been getting a lot of attention on our Roadtreking Facebook Group lately is called Sous-Vide … for “under vacuum.”

Essentially it means cooking food in sealed plastic bags immersed in hot water for long periods of time. Depending on the cut, type, and thickness of the meat or the type of food in question, cooking Sous-Vide for several hours is not out of the ordinary.

The key is managing the temperature of the water so it stays hot enough to cook the food thoroughly and evenly, and long enough to kill any food-borne pathogens that may be in the bag along with the food.

Cooking in sealed bags (usually vacuum sealed) at lower temperatures also results in juicier food, since there's no significant transfer of moisture from the food in the way there is with others cooking method like grilling or broiling, and the cooking temperatures don't get so high that the food starts to dry out.

Now there are devices and kits you can get to make this process easy. We’ll do a tip on that sometime soon. But in today’s tip, a husband and wife team of listeners to this podcast sent us this tip on how the Sous-Vide cooking method made a winter camping trip very tasty… and easy.

Like I said, we’ll talk more about Sous-Vide cooking in a future episode.

Meantime, be sure to send me YOUR tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it

I love hearing from you!

Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by RadPower Bikes ,an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”15:16″]

  • A caller asks about what app to use to clear up and manage memory on her smartphone.

Everyone knows that the more we use our smartphones, the higher the chance that we’ll run out of storage space on them at the worst possible moment. I recently did one of my NBC-TV PC Mike reports on just that, showing three apps proven useful in managing smartphone space.

Files Go is the new Google-made app that checks storage and frees up more space by identifying and deleting old files, Best of all it it takes up a relatively small amount of space on your device with no extras that can affect a phone’s performance. The app is free for Android.

AMC Cleaner is another free and easy-to-use Android tool that does deep scans that reveal the big files that occupy the most phone space, such as old undeleted messages in social apps, unknown files, photos, music, videos and more.

IPhone users have the Magic Phone Cleaner app. It features a simple interface to free up space. It evaluates available storage and identifies large photos and video files before giving users the option to decide if they want to keep or delete them. The app is free for iOS.

To see the apps in operation and for more info go to:

  • Greg remembers Mike talking about a great new handheld vacuum he got for his RV and wants more info.

The one we have we bought from a local store. They make it themselves. But the one its patterned after and the closest one we can find to it is the BISSELL Lightweight Cordless Hand Vacuum and Car Vacuum, model 1985. Equipped with high-performance, cordless technology, it's engineered for versatile cleaning in even the hardest-to-reach spots. Powered by a removable, professional-grade, 22V lithium-ion battery, this lightweight, ergonomically designed hand vacuum delivers total cleaning comfort with up to 15 minutes of fade-free suction. And once you've tackled that mess, its removable dirt bin with Easy Empty lid makes for a quick, mess-free empty. For a complete list of all the products, gear and apps mentioned by Mike and Jennifer on their podcast, YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel and here on the blog, go to

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV  Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’ RVs with locations St. Louis, Missouri; Las Vegas, Nevada; Kalispell, Montana and now… Colorado Springs, Colorado..

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”23:17″]

Let’s face it, sometimes it’s men who – at least initially – are the most excited about embarking on the RV Lifestyle.

This is not always the case to be sure,  but as Jennifer and I travel around North America and meet people, very often the women will gravitate to her and take her aside to express some private concerns about RVing.

So in this special report, Jennifer talks to RV Wives, addressing a bunch of concerns that RV women have raised with her. She alleviates most of these concerns with some very practical advice.

And although she’s talking to the women…. Men, I think you’ll benefit, too, by listening in.

I’ll follow this with my own advice for RV husbands in a future episode.
The interview of the week is brought to you by, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country

TRAVELING TECH TIP [spp-timestamp time=”41:44″]

Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives 2
Steve Van Dinter

By Steve Van Dinter

Verizon Wireless

It’s NFL playoff season and no matter if your team is still in the running or preparing for next year, everyone’s a winner when it comes to tech.

If you’re lucky enough to have tickets to a playoff game, you can take your tailgate to the next level with bluetooth speakers like the UE Wonderboom 2. They’re portable, loud and waterproof – making them the perfect choice for any outdoor conditions.

When it comes to taking pictures you’ll want to cherish, I can’t think of a better pocket partner than the Google Pixel 2. It’s best in class camera and portrait mode will produce touchdown worthy celebrations and it’s fast charge and Google Assistant will keep you going for hours and hours.

Sometimes game day turns into game night and when it does, make sure you’re packing the Mophie Powerstation mini 3000. It quickly charges most smartphones or USB devices and fits in your pocket so you don’t run out of juice when posting your selfie.

When you’re on the go and still want to watch the games, you’ve got many options. Starting this month you can catch all NFL playoff games live-streamed for free on Yahoo and Yahoo Sports in addition to go90 and the NFL Mobile app.

Lastly when it comes to making your home or RV more festive, you can easily show your spirit with Phillips Hue lights. Each bulb lets you choose from up to 16 million colors…and you can set team color presets so you’re always game day ready.

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide.

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT –  Northern Wisconsin [spp-timestamp time=”45:18″]

Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives 3
Patti and Tom Burkett

By Tom and Patti Burkett

Say “Wisconsin” to almost anyone, and they’re likely to think of cheese.  There is cheese in this story, but you’ll have to wait for it.  This is a trip along US 8, which runs through pinewoods, across rivers, and along lakes in the north woods.  As we approached the highway strange creatures appeared out of the fog.  Along one side of the Saint Croix Trail was the Franconia Sculpture Park.

As we strolled the grounds, creations of all sorts emerged from the mist, some quite realistic, others taking a good bit of scrutiny before we could puzzle out what they were.  At one end of the park is a large sturdy farmhouse that’s home to the several artists in residence.

Toward the back of the property are workshops, a welding shop, a foundry, and piles and piles of materials.  The park has a gift and information shop near the parking lot and offers community maker days at which you can learn how to work metal or wood with guidance from the rotating staff of artists.
Below the Saint Croix River bridge, the wild rice waved as the river passed around it.  A canoe worked through the stand, collecting ripe grain.  This is an annual harvest, conducted mostly by the native Anishinabe people who’ve lived here for millennia.  Once the canoe is full of dark grains, the processing begins.  First, the rice is dried in the sun.

Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives 4Then it’s parched, which is a bit like roasting, done in a cast iron kettle over a fire.  The parched rice is placed in a pit, and moccasin-shod rice dancers separate the grain from the chaff.  Finally, it’s passed in front of a fan or the wind to blow the chaff away.  There are more mechanized methods for all these things, but if you’re lucky, you can be here at harvest time and see it done this way.
Northern Wisconsin is sprinkled with interesting things to see, and if you’re willing to wander a bit, you can see many of them from route 8.  We consulted a list of creameries and found the Comstock Creamery a few miles north on US 63.  This is an old school cheese house, with milk being delivered from local farms in the back, while the cheese is going out the front.

Many samples were available, and we left with several items intended for friends and family back home.  Most of them did not survive the rest of the trip, but we enjoyed them all.  This was a great place for conversation, with locals coming i and out to stock up for the holidays.  Several suggested we make time for the local cranberry festival, and nearly everyone told us not to miss Louie’s Finer Meats a few miles farther north.
We’ve learned not to ignore recommendations like these, and even though it was a detour from a detour, off to Louie’s we went.  A big smoker and an industrial size barbecue grill were set up and smoking in the parking lot when we arrived.  Inside, the meat counter ran the forty foot length of the store, and the wall behind it was covered with certificates and award ribbons from international sausage competitions—there were more than a hundred dating back decades.

On a counter was one of those rotating three-tier pizza display warmers, each level loaded with hot sausage samples.  First cheese, now sausage, and we thought we might not need to eat for a day or two.  More goodies for the fridge, and we got into the Roadtrek a bit more slowly than before. For better or worse, our next stop was at the Norske Nook a few miles distant in Rice Lake.  This Norwegian eatery is as celebrated for its pies as Louie’s is for its sausage.  We parked in the lot right next to a Roadtrek of the same vintage as ours, and visited with its owners as we waited for our order.Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives 5

The menu includes specialties like lefse and meatballs, but we settled for pie.  Sometimes a day seems to be all about eating, and this one was way up there on the list.  One of the nice things about driving a road like US 8 is that it runs straight and long and travels through many interesting small towns, but has relatively little traffic.  In this case, it was also a very nice surface, free of potholes and construction.
We followed it to Ladysmith and the Toad House.  A big porch wrapped around two sides of the house, with a comfortable bench looking out toward the town.  Piled on one end were several large zucchinis and two but Hubbard squashes almost as big as beach balls.

Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives 6A sign above them offered: “if you can carry it, you can have it.”  Inside, a cozy cafe served up homemade bread and soups.  Side rooms were full of work by local artists.  A whole set of meticulously crafted felted animals prowled the shelves and tables, some life size, others miniature.

There were watercolors of flowers and wildlife and landscapes, and jewelry made from polished stones and worked silver.  Upstairs a weaver welcomed us into her studio and told us about the jacquard method she used to create tablecloths and tapestries.  Local authors were also on display, with a rack of children’s book, memoirs, and novels.
Fred Smith, we discovered was an artist of quite a different sort.  A retired lumberjack, who never learned to read or write, he chose to spend his retirement years sculpting people, animals, and objects out of concrete.  Studded with smooth stones and bits of glass, his life-size works capture the events and personalities of his time.Episode 175: Straight Talk for RV Wives 7

Want to see a twelve-foot surgeon?  A twenty mule team?  A politician with his hand in someone’s pocket?  Look no farther than the Fred Smith Concrete Park, now run by a non-profit foundation dedicated to preserving the sculptures and encouraging other for artists in their work.
We ended the day with some relatives of mine who live on the Wisconsin River.  It is tradition, they told us, in the northwoods, to eat fish fry on Friday night.  So much so that when they moved to the area a year ago, a friend gave them a book of more than twenty two-for-one fish fry coupons to different bars and restaurants so they could select their favorites for regular attendance.

So after a day of cheese, sausage, pie, and soup, we sat around a high-top table at the North Wind Bar, sipping a beer and eating fried walleye.  Come on along to northern Wisconsin.  There’s plenty here to see and do, all of it off the beaten path.


This part of the podcast is sponsored by Steinbring Motorcoach, Roadtrek’s newest dealer and a third generation family business in Minnesota’s beautiful Chain of Lakes region built on quality motorhomes and excellent pricing and service.

RV Show Schedule for Next Weekend [spp-timestamp time=”53:08″]

Boston RV & Camping Expo

January 15

Boston Convention and Exhibition Center

Boston, MA


Cincinnati Travel, Sports & Boat Show

January 17-21

Duke Energy Convention Center

Cincinnati, OH


Florida RV SuperShow

January 17-21

Florida State Fairgrounds

Tampa, FL


30th Annual Inland Northwest RV Show and Sale

January 18-21

Spokane Fair and Expo Center

Spokane, WA


36th Annual Idaho RV Supershow

January 18-21

Expo Idaho

Bloise, ID


Austin Boat & Travel Trailer Show

January 18-21

Austin Convention Center

Austin, TX


Grand Rapids Camper, Travel & RV Show

January 18-21

DeVos Place

Grand Rapids, MI


Mid-Michigan RV Show

January 18-21

MSU Pavilion

East Lansing, MI


Minnesota Sportsmen's Boat, Camping & Vacation Show

January 18-21

St. Paul River Centre

St. Paul, MN


Tacoma RV Show

January 18-21

Tacoma Dome

Tacoma, WA


Toronto RV Show and Sale

January 18-21

Toronto Congress Centre

Toronto, ON


30th Annual Iowa Boat, RV & Vacation Show

January 19-21


Cedar Falls, IA


Charlotte RV Show

January 19-21

Park Expo & Conference Center

Charlotte, NC


Georgia RV & Camper Show

January 19-21

Cobb Galleria Centre

Atlanta, GA


Greater Chicago RV Show

January 19-21

Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center

Schaumburg, IL


Great Rockies Sports Show

January 19-21

MetraPark Expo Center

Billings, MT


Lexington RV Show

January 19-21

Kentucky Horse Park

Lexington, KY


Nashville RV Super Show

January 19-21

Music City Center

Nashville, TN


New Jersey RV & Camping Show – Edison

January 19-21

NJ Convention & Expo Center

Edison, NJ


Northeast RV & Camping Show

January 19-21

CT Convention Center

Hartford, CT


37th Annual Tidewater RV Show

January 19-21

Virginia Beach Convention Center

Virginia Beach, VA


Western New York RV Show

January 19-28

Hamburg Fairgrounds Events Center

Hamburg, NY


Quartzside Sports, Vacation & RV Show

January 20-28

Show Grounds Location

Quartzside, AZ

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And remember, you can appear in future episodes. Ask a question or voice your comments about RV topics by clicking the Leave Voicemail tab on the right side of this page here at You can then use the microphone on your computer to record your words.

Mike Wendland

Published on 2018-01-17

Mike Wendland is a multiple Emmy-award-winning Journalist, Podcaster, YouTuber, and Blogger, who has traveled with his wife, Jennifer, all over North America in an RV, sharing adventures and reviewing RV, Camping, Outdoor, Travel and Tech Gear for the past 12 years. They are leading industry experts in RV living and have written 18 travel books.

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