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Episode 86: RV Tips, News, Q&A, Apps and Bucket List Drives

| Updated May 4, 2016

This episode of the Roadtreking RV Lifestyle Podcast offers so much information and advice that it’s a virtual RV Travel Magazine for the ear. From National Park guides and news to a discussion on taking a canoe or kayak on an RV trip to some awesome drives that belong on every RVer’s Bucket List, we cover it all.



Complete shownotes for Episode 86 of the Roadtreking RV Lifestytle Podcast:


 parkguideWhere to get a great National Park Guide…

This is a 36-page book that will help you find your place in the National Park System this year. With the Essential Park Guide, you can find that place.

The tip of the week is brought to you by Good Sam, the world's most popular RV organization, now celebrating its 50th year.


Listener Dave asks for recommendations on where to park his Class A RV while visiting America’s Largest RV Show in Hershey, PA Sept. 14-18

Mike suggests a link to area campgrounds in and around Hershey, but recommends the Hersheypark Camping Resort, right near the show grounds, which runs free shuttle service.

Listener John asks if there is any news about the lottery we held for the camping spots for the Roadtreking gathering we call the Tobermory Expedition, Sept. 5-9 at Tobermory in northern Ontario, Canada.FBGroup

The event is sold out and the lottery was held. We showed a video of it on our Roadtreking Facebook Group. That group is THE single best place to go when you have RV questions, need help or just want to be kept informed on events, news and items of interest to the Roadtreking RV audience, no matter what kind of RV you have. Tobermory is at the northern tip of the Bruce Peninsula between Georgian Bay and the main basin of Lake Huron. It is known for its crystal clear waters and spectacular wilderness scenery. You can watch the video for the lottery to award spots on the Facebook Group.

Just a note that our other Roadtreking gatherings for this year – to the Smoky Mountains in June and the Fall Foliage one in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in October are also sold out with long waiting lists. All this is to underscore the importance of being a part of our Facebook Group.

The next event that is not yet sold out will be January 20-22, 2017 and is our annual winter campout at Tahquamenon Falls. We’ll start taking signups for it on the blog and announce via the Roadtreking Facebook Group sometime in the early fall.

Speaking of the Smokies, reader Jane DeWolf sent a nice note:smokymnp

My husband, Dennis, and I are looking forward to the Roadtrek  trip to the Smokies in June.  We actually live near the Smokies and do volunteer work in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This weekend when we were listening to your podcast,  you mentioned that you were going to bring Bo with you on this trip.  Naturally we are very anxious to meet you, your wife, Jennifer, and of course, Bo.  However, we thought we should warn you that there are only 2 trails in the GSMNP which allow dogs on them.  Both are near the park entrances.  The one on the Tennessee  side of the park is the Sugarland's trail near the Sugarland's Visitors Center.  The one near Cherokee in the NC side is the River trail near the Oconuluftee Visitor Center.  Dogs are allowed in the park campgrounds and on the roads. We just thought we would give you a heads up in case you were not aware of the GSMNP regulations.

Gary Hennes' system

By email, a listener asks: “I am trying to find the best way to carry a canoe on a roadtrek. I have a 2003 Popular 200. Any ideas?”

Mike notes that he found a webpage at that offered some ideas.

Roadtrek RVs have raised roofs that can make carrying a canoe seem difficult. However, the vehicles are compatible with several roof racks and canoes can also be mounted to the rear of the RV. Roof racks are the most stable and the safest carrying option. The canoe you choose should be measured first to ensure it fits your vehicle model and to see if your RV can transport the canoe safely at high speeds.

Another option is foam blocks Roadtrek rooftop designs make it difficult to install standard racks. Foam blocks are a simple solution that allow you to safely mount a canoe to the roof. The blocks have slots to fit the canoe, and with three straps you can secure the canoe to the vehicle. This is an effective method of transport and is cheaper than trailers and permanent racks. The blocks do not require any alterations to the vehicle and can be easily stored when not in use. You can find blocks in several different sizes, but the standard, square blocks are the best for mounting on Roadtrek rooftops. The square blocks use a small amount of space and can be placed in areas that will not obstruct vents.

They are available from:
DRD Corp.
PO Box 460
Glenmoore, PA 19343

Standard roof racks by Thule and Yakima are good carrying options. Installing the roof racks can be complicated on Roadtrek vehicles because their rooftops are not standard. The racks require custom installation by clamping to the rain gutters or drilling through the fiberglass. Once installed, the racks make it easy to secure your canoe to the roof. Installing railing on the roof and using the Crossroad package from Thule is a great option for Roadtrek vans. You can adjust the height of the railing during installation to create clearance, which will prevent the canoe from interfering with raised vents and obstacles.

42 Silvermine Road
Seymour, CT 06483

Trailers are great method for carrying a canoe with a Roadtrek. Trailers are light and their behind-the-vehicle location results in less wind resistance and better clearance. Castle Craft manufactures a single canoe trailer that is light enough to be towed with a motorcycle. The trailer will safely hold the canoe and not have any major effect on gas mileage. The company makes a trailer capable of holding multiple canoes and kayaks. Yakima also makes a lightweight trailer for carrying multiple canoes. Yakima's RackandRoll trailers are designed to hold canoes, kayaks, bicycles and other recreational gear. The versatility of the Yakima trailer makes it a top choice.

Castle Craft
PO Box #3
Braidwood, IL 60408

Here’s how my friend Gary Hennes managed to carry a kayak and a canoe on his Sprinter based Roadtrek: He used a roof rack from Yakima and a Hullavator mechanism that effortlessly lifts the kayak up to the roof. He also carried in a separate rack on the other side,  a We-no-nah 16 1/2 foot Kevlar Advantage canoe. That was on his old 2006 RV. He has a newer Roadtrek and says, because of solar panels its much trickier and that he may have to remove awning to make room

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations.



 This portion of the podcast is brought to you by Alde  the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV

TRAVELING TECH TIP: Hear any TV on your smartphone

Van Dinter_Steve
Steve Van Dinter

Steve Van Dinter of Verizon checks in with a great Traveling Technology Tip about an awesome app called Tunity. This is a great app that allows you to hear any muted, live TV’s audio directly on your mobile device. Simply scan the TV with your smartphone, let Tunity locate the channel and stream the audio through your headphones or bluetooth speaker.

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.


Meet us in Nashville!Come to Nashville and meet Jennifer and me at the KOA in Nashville (on Music Center Drive) May 14 and 15. We’ll also be going to the Grand Old Opry on Saturday the 15th. Details at

The Family Motor Coach Associations 94th Family Reunion and Motorhome Showcase – Aug. 3-6 at the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, MA. Jennifer and I will be there presenting a couple of seminars. Details at

BUCKET LIST TRIP – Our three favorite RV Drives

Here’s a link the full report including videos of our most most favorite drives after 100,000 mikes of travel over the past four years.. The Going to the Sky Road at Glacier National Park, Pikes Peak and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

This part of the podcast is brought to you by AllStays – the Internets #1 RV and camping app since 2010

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Many listeners are asking how they can subscribe, review and rate the Roadtreking Podcast on iTunes. With a new podcast like this, those reviews and ratings are really important to be able to show well in the iTunes listings. So if you can, I’d sure appreciate it if you’d subscribe and leave me your review.

Here’s how:

How to subscribe, rate and review a podcast

First, open up the iTunes app on your computer or mobile device. Click on Podcasts up on the top
> From the iTunes Podcasts page, use the “Search Store” field up at the top right corner of the page. Type in Mike Wendland or Roadtreking RV Podcast.
> Click on the logo image of the Roadtreking RV Podcast on the search return page
> From there (see photo above), you can…

1) Subscribe

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Thanks to all for the kind reviews we’ve received so far. That got us noticed by Apple/iTunes as “New and Noteworthy.” I appreciate every review!

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 2016-05-04

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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