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RT44: Is it Time to Have ‘No Campfire’ Zones in RV Parks?

| Updated Jul 15, 2015

For many, RVing, camping, and campfires go together like graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate, but there is growing concern that the fires may be getting out of control – even when safely confined to a fire pit.

Most recently, for example, Chuck Woodbury, founder and publisher, RV Travel, opined that it's time for some campgrounds to establish so-called “No Campfire Zones.” He wrote his editorial, of course, after spending a few nights at a packed KOA where his neighbor's fire pit was less than 10 feet from his RV.

Chuck joins the Roadtreking podcast this week to discuss the subject of campfires with Mike, where they talk about the idea of having campfire bans in certain situations. [spp-timestamp time=”41:14″]

Also in this episode, we talk finding travel companions, how to screen campgrounds, and what happens when you become ill on the road along with RV news this week, tech tips, a destination of the week and more.


Show Notes for Episode #44 July 15, 2015, of Roadtreking – The RV Lifestyle Podcast:

First Things First: Back from Maine, Checking In From Home

The show begins with Jennifer and Mike Wendland bringing you up to speed on their recent travels and where they are headed next. [spp-timestamp time=”3:01″]

Listener Question: How Can I Find an RV Travel Companion?

Listener Bobbi asks about finding someone travel with in an RV. Mike suggests it is, in fact, better to travel with someone. Jennifer and Mike offer several links for connecting with others looking for RV travel companions, including:

Listener Question: Can You Help Me Find More Campground Reviews?

A listener asks about finding good campgrounds to find out what others have to say about them, though cautions against visiting someplace based strictly on reviews. Mike shares some resources like:

  • AllStays: This is Mike's favorite with more than 29,0000 campgrounds – from independent and KOA to local county and city parks.
  • RV Park Reviews: A great website that includes a clickable map and allows for searching by state
  • Yelp: Just search for campgrounds near a specific location and a lot of great info and reviews will pop up
  • Go to the Roadtreking homepage and simply do a search for “campgrounds” [spp-timestamp time=”8:11″]

Listener Question: What If I Get Sick While RVing Far From Home?

A listener asks about getting sick on the road and what happens when far from home. Jennifer shares some insight based on her recent experiences, noting that good care is easy to find. [spp-timestamp time=”15:16″]

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, Mo.
Van City RV only sells Class B. RVs. Owner Ray Dwyer has been in the RV business for 44 years and is considered the dean of Class B RVs. Nobody knows more about small motorhomes that Ray and his crew. They have new and used Class B motorhomes in stock from the major manufacturers. When you fly in to buy your RV from Van City, they'll arrange to have you picked up from the airport and will reimburse you $500 toward your airfare. Then, your RV will be fully prepared for travel, complete with full tanks of fuel and propane. After a complete orientation with their staff on your new RV, you can take delivery and set out for home. Dan the Van Man gives the week's specials on the podcast.


RV News of the Week: Campsite Hoarder, Minnesota Storms, Roadtrek's New Power System

Colorado Man Turns Campsite Into Personal Dump: A Colorado man landed himself in trouble for using a national forest campsite to hoard a massive 8,000 pounds of trash. (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”21:37″]

Massive Storm Tears Through Minnesota: A huge storm tore through the heart of Minnesota's lake country this week, forcing some fo the state's most popular resorts and campgrounds to shut down at the height of the vacation season. (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”23:20″]

Roadtrek Announces Availability of Lithium-ion Battery Power: We’ve been talking about lithium-ion batteries here for weeks and now Roadtrek Motorhomes has officially announced the availability of their EcoTrek power module, utilizing lithium-ion technology (read: batteries able to recharge themselves and provide power to your RV using several energy sources) to lift the electrical system limits for Roadtrek owners. (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”24:59″]

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

The Alde hydronic system brings many features and benefits not found with any other product.

  1. Silent Radiant Heat – providing a warm even natural heated interior. Great for pets. (And Humans)
  2. Increased Interior Space by combining two systems in one.
  3. Efficiency. The whole system draws less than 1 amp on 12V DC and will extend the life of your propane roughly 40% over forced air.
  4. Heating on Electric or Gas.
  5. Multiple Options and Amenities: Towel Warmers, Floor Heat, Tank Heating, 4 Season Camping, Engine Heat, Driver Comfort,
  6. Modern Programable Color Touch Screen Thermostat and Interface
  7. Minimal Side-Wall Penetration. Small combined intake and exhaust eliminate big cut outs and sidewall congestion.


Traveling Tech: Apps to Record Phone Calls When Traveling

Whether you’re just too busy to pay close attention – or have any other reasons – and want to record and save an important phone call for future reference, a number of apps can do it for you. Be sure and know your state law on recording phone calls – some have restrictions. We have three call recording apps to recommend.

Automatic Call Recorder allows users to simply record any or all calls. You can choose to save or delete calls in the app’s inbox – even add notes to calls and integration with Google Drive and Dropbox allows calls to be saved and synced to the cloud. The app is free for Android. A $6.99 pro version with additional features is available.

Clever Mobile’s Call Recorder allows users to record, play, and delete recorded phone calls. You set up where recordings are stored and can protect them with a password. The app is free for Android with a $5.99 pro version available.

For iPhone users, there’s TapeACall Pro. The app allows users to record calls already in progress or that are about to be made. Once the call is completed, recordings are instantly available and ready to be shared or saved. TapeACall Pro is $9.99 a year. [spp-timestamp time=”29:11″]

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon Wireless, the nation’s largest and most reliable 4G LTE network.

I have some exciting news to share this week. I’ve teamed up with Verizon for their upcoming #VZHangout to talk about all things traveling with tech!

During the Hangout, I’ll be sharing what devices I rely on to stay connected while on the road. Verizon Uber User, Paul Ulreich, will be hosting the Hangout and sharing his top tech picks for today’s modern traveler.

Trust me, you don’t want to miss it! Mark your calendars for Tuesday, July 21 at 8:00 p.m. EST and remember to tune in.

To join the conversation, simply follow the #VZHangout hashtag on Twitter, or head over to Verizon Midwest Area blog to watch the live stream. You can even submit your questions for us to answer live!

Visit for stories about how technology can enhance and improve your life.


RV Bucket List Destination: Utah's Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park

You may never have visited this area of amazing shifting sea of red sand dunes and red rock canyons in Southwestern Utah but you surely have seen it.

But you may have thought it was Egypt.

Or Matt Dillon’s home in the old TV series Gunsmoke.

Or the Planet of the Apes or all sorts of other places, thanks to the more than 300 Hollywood movies that used the backdrop of these amazing pink, vermillion, tan and red sand dunes that lie beneath some spectacular red sandstone cliffs.

We spent a couple of days at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park and in the town of Kanab, 20 miles south on US 89. Estimated to be between 10,000 and 15,000 years old, the dunes are formed from the erosion of pink-colored Navajo Sandstone surrounding the park. High winds passing through the notch between the Moquith and Moccasin Mountains pick up loose sand particles and then drop them onto the dunes, which are constantly shifting.

There’s a great campground at the park, though we opted to stay in an RV park in Kanab, where a fascinating museum documents an area so popular with filmakers from the 1920s through today, that it’s been called “Little Hollywood.” Clint Eastwood, James Garner, Dennis Weaver, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Dale Robertson, and Ronald Reagan, are among the stars that were on location in the Kanab area.

And the coral pink sand dunes was the backdrop for many of their movies. “The Greatest Story Ever Told” used those dunes as Egypt for its Exodus scenes.

The dunes are very accessible. There’s a picnic area and an overlook and you can walk right out in and over them on foot. Beware of ATVs and dune buggies, though, as they are also allowed to run through the dunes.

Wear a hat and take plenty of water. The sand is very hot.

If you’re thinking of a visit, you may want to target Kanab and its Western Legends Roundup each August (Aug. 27-29 in 2015). The event pays tribute to the films shot in the area and many of those who worked on the movies and TV series are in town to talk about the projects that weekend.

If you can’t make that event, try to be there on a Monday night. The local movie theater shows westerns every Saturday night. Cost is $2 a ticket. (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”34:58″]


This part of the podcast is brought to you by Leisure Time RV, serving central Florida and the Internet from Winter Garden, Fla..

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Main Topic: Chuck Woodbury, founder and publisher of RV Travel

Chuck Woodbury is the founder and publisher of RV Travel, a weekly newsletter serving people who enjoy traveling in their recreation vehicles

And he says It’s time for RV parks to establish “no campfire” zones.

To take his survey go to [spp-timestamp time=”41:14″]

Please Subscribe and Give Us a Rating and Review!

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

2) Choose and Click on a star (1-5) that reflects your rating. Five stars means you really like it, one star not so much.

3) Leave a written review.

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 2015-07-15

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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