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Episode 195: The luxury campground resort trend

| Updated Jun 6, 2018

It’s no secret the RV Industry is on a tear. Record sales continue and every month, thousands of new RVers are hitting the roads. But where will they all stay?

The sad fact is there just are not enough campsites to keep pace with the growth in RV sales. And many of the existing campgrounds are poorly kept up. Fortunately, all that is about to change as across North America, developers are building out new, modern, state of the art campgrounds that sometimes more resemble all-inclusive vacation spots than empty fields with electric pedestals.

In this week’s podcast, we interview one of those developers who talks about the upcoming boom in RV resorts.

Plus, lots of RV news, RV tips, your questions, traveling technology advice and an off the beaten path report.

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 #195 June 6, 2018 of Roadtreking – The RV Podcast

WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”2:26″]

We’re busy packing. Had to stop to do this podcast but we take off soon for the first long trip of the summer, heading to Glacier National Park in Northern Montana. We have a Roadtreking gathering there staring in less than two weeks and this time, instead of rushing, we are going to take our time.

Episode 195: The luxury campground resort trend 1That’s right. We are viewing to follow our 330 Rule – which means quit by 330 PM in the afternoon or stop after driving no more than 330 miles. Now if you are a regular follower, you know Mike and I haven’t been real successful at following our own rule. But this time, we are going to promise. And to be accountable to that, we are going to post a video every day that we’re traveling on our RV Lifestyle Channel on YouTube.

I should point out that we won’t be traveling every day. We have a business meeting we have to do and we have a couple of stories we’ll be shooting on the way out so because unexpected things always arise, we don’t plan to be driving every single day. But, every day that we are on the road, we will do our best to keep that 330 Rule.

That, of course, depends on us leaving. Even though we travel in a Class B campervan, it takes forever to get it packed and stocked….and Mike doesn’t help with all his camera and video gear and drone taking up all our storage space! If you wonder just what we do to get ready on a long trip like this, check out our RV Lifestyle Channel on YouTube as we will have a video coming out Thursday June 7 first thing in the morning showing the various things we did to prepare for this trip.

We are planning on making a gazillion videos on this trip. Oh yeah, that reminds me to announce that those videos include a brand new weekly Live Webcast that we are doing at 9 PM every Sunday night. We call is “Ask Us Anything” and we go live from wherever we are to talk about what’s happening in the RV world and to answer whatever questions you sent in. We did our first one this past Sunday and it was a ball. We had SO MANY questions.  I can’t wait to go live this coming Sunday. We’re not sure where we’ll be. Maybe the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Maybe somewhere in Northern Wisconsin or Minnesota.

We should point out that if we are in a really remote location and we do not have a robust Internet connection, we won’t be able to go live. But most times we are just fine and we anticipate being able to do the program most weeks….  By the way… Bo will NOT be accompanying us on this trip. We have a lot of work to do there and on the way out and National Parks are not very dog friendly…so he will be staying with our daughter and her family in Michigan.

Ok. That’s what we are up to. Meantime, here is the RV News you need to know about this week:

Utah national park considering limiting daily visitors after record numbers visit Memorial Day
Officials at Utah's Zion National Park are studying plans to limit the number of daily visitors and require reservations to walk on popular trails after being overwhelmed Memorial Day weekend. A story out last week stated that 30,000 people visited Zion on Sunday alone, creating two hour shuttle bus waits, long lines on trails and overflowing trash cans. At Arches National Park, Memorial Day numbers were so overwhelming rangers had to turn people away and tell them to come back later. About 4.5 million people visited Zion in 2017, making it one of the more popular parks in the country. To read more click here.

Dog lost camping found after two months living in Utah wilderness
A Utah family whose dog ran away while camping found their missing pup last week, ending a two month search. Cooter, a mini Aussie, lost 16 pounds during his two months in the wilderness, was visibly malnourished, missing teeth, and covered with fleas and ticks. But the dog was thrilled to be home. A volunteer helped the owner find the missing pup, which got me to thinking back to an interview we did with a pet detective who offered valuable insight into how to keep your pet safe while camping. To read more about the story click here. To listen to the podcast, click here.

Officials considering gas and oil drilling one mile from Colorado national park
Federal officials are considering a plan to allow oil and gas development within a mile of Colorado's Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. The plan is something environmentalists oppose, and the Environmental Protection Agency is urging officials from Bureau of Land Management to consider air quality concerns before making a final decision. To learn more, click here.

Calling all snake hunters: Florida national park needs you!
Everglades National Park is seeking to hire about 120 paid snake hunters to find and kill Burmese pythons who are destroying the park's ecosystem, nearly wiping out bobcats, rabbits and other small mammals. The invasive species has been a problem for years, with park officials trying all kinds of things to get rid of them from bringing in python hunters from India, using volunteers, and other methods. Hunters will be vetted and could be working as early as July. To read more click here.

All Canadian national parks offering different 2018 free day

All of Canada's national parks, historic sites and marine conservation areas are offering a free day in 2018. Many of these dates are different, meaning it is possible to visit many for free with a little planning. To learn more click here or here.

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=”18:59″]

This week I received an email from a listener named Donna, who wanted to share a tip on an inexpensive item that she has found extremely handy.

Donna writes: “Hi Jennifer. I really enjoy listening to your and Mike's podcast. I have a tip of something I'd like to share with your listeners. It is about something I  always try to keep stocked in the camper –  a box of waterproof, disposable  shower caps picked up at the dollar store.

Episode 195: The luxury campground resort trend 2I know that sounds like a strange must-have camping item, but they are super handy! 

I use them to cover up plates of food when my husband and I are eating outside and we need to make a few trips back and forth to get everything on the table. The plastic shower caps are the perfect size to cover a large bowl, or our plates, and then I do not need to worry about flies or any other bugs getting at our food before we sit down. 

I also use shower caps over my sneakers when I need to run into the camper for a minute but do not want to take the time to take off my shoes. I like to keep the floor clean, and found that taking off our shoes at the door really helps. But when I just need to run in for a minute and do not want to take the time to untie and tie my shoes, the plastic shower caps are perfect! I just slip them over my feet, go inside, and slip them off, and there is no mess.

My husband and I like to ride our bikes when we camp. I place a shower cap on each of our seats to keep them clean and dry when not in use.

I have even used the shower caps as a rain cover. Sometimes we'll be out for a walk and I want to use my phone to take a picture but it is raining. By putting the phone in the shower cap, everything stays dry, and I can still take my picture.

I hope this idea can help someone, and thank you and Mike again for all you do!”

Well thank you, Donna, for that tip! I never thought of using a plastic shower cap in so many ways, but those are all excellent ideas. I can see how the size, elastic and waterproof plastic could be very handy.

I looked online to see how much they cost and noticed the Dollar Tree sells an 8 pack of disposable shower caps for $1. Amazon also sells them. I found 100 clear waterproof and disposable shower caps selling for $6.99 at Amazon.

I will put links and information on this idea in the show notes.

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=”24:32″]

Here are the questions we answered this week:

–Yvonne asks about Mobile RV Repair Services and how to find one.

Look them up or ask the nearest RV campground. Every campground knows at least one RV Mobile Tech.

Sharon asks can she use a regular metal roasting pan to roast vegetables in the Highpoint microwave/convection oven found in many RVs.

— Metal cookware should not be used in a microwave. Metal will not allow microwaves to penetrate; the food behind the metal will not be cooked. The metal could also cause arcing in the oven. Microwave convection ovens can use metal and foil safely during the convection cooking. But make sure it is used for convection cooking, not microwave!

Rachel is a new Rver and solo traveler and wants to know how far ahead to plan for RV site reservations. Far in advance? The day of your travels?


Hi…we were in the Upper Peninsula (MI) on a gravel road and our popular 190 started shaking so bad in the front end we had to go about 5 mph max…Some cars were whizzing past us. Anybody have this problem? Shocks? Tie rods? ball joints? We don't expect to try any 4 wheel drive roads but we'd like to be able to navigate the occasional gravel road. Thanks, Stefan 

–RVs do NOT like washboard roads. Also, many gravel and dirt roads are tarred and tar sticks to the rubber on your tires, gathers rocks and stones and makes the vehicle drive like you described. If that happens, you need to scrape the tar off.

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.

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”36:54″]

As we noted at the top of the podcast, record sales continue and every month, thousands of new RVers are hitting the roads. But the question is….where will they all stay? There just are not enough campsites to keep pace with the growth in RV sales. And many of the existing campgrounds are poorly kept up. Fortunately, all that is about to change as across North America, developers are building out new, modern, state of the art campgrounds that sometimes more resemble all-inclusive vacation spots than empty fields with electric pedestals.

Episode 195: The luxury campground resort trend 3
Todd Burbage, Blue Water Development

In this week’s podcast, we interview one of those developers who talks about the upcoming boom in RV resorts.

Our guest is Todd Burbage, a real estate developer specializing in commercial and hospitality properties operating in Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Maine, New Jersey and North Carolina. Todd is head of Blue Water Development, one of a number of companies throughout North America that recognizes the need for more high-quality campgrounds and is working to meet it.

Blue Water's diverse portfolio includes five luxury RV resort properties: The Resort at Massey's Landing in Millsboro, DE, Chincoteague Island KOA in Chincoteague, VA, Cape Charles/Chesapeake Bay KOA in Cape Charles, VA, Flat Rock Bridge Family Campground in Lebanon, ME, and Hampton Lodge Campground in Coinjock, NC.

(The featured image at the top of this post is of the company's Cape Charles/Chesapeake Bay KOA in Cape Charles, VA)

All these luxury campgrounds have one major thing in common: Sophisticated designs and superior amenities.

I invited Todd to help us understand what goes into making a modern RV campground. It’s much more than you think.

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: The Google Pixelbook [spp-timestamp time=”55:10″]

By Steve Van Dinter
Verizon Wireless

Episode 195: The luxury campground resort trend 4
Steve Van Dinter

Living life on the road certainly has its perks – getting to see the countryside, meeting new people, and enjoying every kind of food imaginable. And for those working remotely from their RVs, having a mobile office solution that is a joy to use makes a big difference. Or just having a device that’s comfortable to use while paying bills, writing emails and doing research.

So let me introduce you to a device you’ve probably never heard of. It’s called the Google Pixelbook, and it’s a laptop that runs on an efficient and easy to use operating system called Chrome OS.Episode 195: The luxury campground resort trend 5

There are many many things I like about this laptop. First, it is easy to carry around. While the screen itself is a decent sized 12.3 inches, it’s only 4/10 of an inch thick! It lasts a long time on battery – up to 10 hours. And it can be charged by using your phone’s USB C charging cable.

Next the form factor. It can be used as a laptop with an attached keyboard that is one of the best I’ve used. Or you can bend it into a tent and watch streaming videos like Netflix. And finally you can fold it completely over and use as a tablet. It also looks really nice and feels durable.

Now onto Chrome OS. If you’re like me and hate waiting for a device to turn on, you’re going to love Chrome OS. It boots up in less than 10 seconds and because of how it’s built will never slow down over time. It also has access to the Google Play store meaning you can download apps to use on it like you would your phone. And it’s the first laptop with the Google Assistant built in so getting answers to your questions is as easy as talking to your Google Home.

And when it comes to connectivity, if you have a Google Pixel phone it can use instant tethering. This let’s the Pixelbook share your phone’s data connection without needing to even touch your phone. Or you can connect to any wifi hotspot.

Lastly, if you’re artistic or prefer to handwrite notes, you can using the Pixelbook Pen.

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.

When Verizon says better matters, they mean it.

Only Verizon ranked highest in  leading network studies, in multiple tests, year after year that measure Network quality performance in the United States by RootMetrics for the fifth consecutive testing period.

Can your network say that?

If you’re stuck on the wrong network, head over to Verizon and get unstuck.

RV CALENDAR OF EVENTS [spp-timestamp time=”57:57″]

Tampa Bay Summer RV Show
Florida State Fairgrounds
Tampa, FL
Roadtreking Photo Safari at Glacier NP
Chewing Blackbones RV Park
Babb, MT
Passport America

Music City USA Mega Rally

Wilson County Fairgrounds
Lebanon, TN


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Mike Wendland

Published on 2018-06-06

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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