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RT51 One Couple’s RV Journey: From Paradise to Paradise

| Updated Sep 2, 2015

This week on the podcast we meet an RVing couple that travels from Paradise to Paradise. And in this week's episode, they share how they maximize their RV travels and fight back against the aging process.

We offer lessons learned from Carl and Bobbi Braun,  who wanted to do more in retirement than just grow old, plus we have a full plate of RV News, cool RV destination information, hot traveling tech and what RV events should be on your calendar.

Besides the interview with the Brauns, we have so much to cover in this episode:

– How to take your DirectTV satellite programming on the road in your RV

– A simple but very effective  high tech way to keep your RV or your home safe when you are not in it

– Three cool apps to help plan those RV meals

– An off the beaten path report about a fascinating museum in a small Georgia town


Here are the complete shownotes from Episode 51, released Sept. 2, 2015

We recorded this episode on the Emerald Coast of Florida, where we are still exploring various beachfront communities and attractions. As we began, we announced a major milestone for the podcast. We just reached the 1 million download mark. That means these podcasts have been downloaded over 1 million times since we began in October 2014. [spp-timestamp time=”2:30″]

Very few podcasts reach that download number. For those that do, it usually takes years to accomplish. That we did it in a little over 10 months is simply amazing. Than you all so much!


In an RV, space is at a premium. And few things take up more room that suitcases packed with clothes. That's why we use eBags to pack our clothes. [spp-timestamp time=”5:30″]

Jennifer explains how we heard about them when we were just starting out RVing from a fellow RVers who sang the praises of this very affordable way to pack and carry clothes on an RV trip.

Some RVers are so hooked on eBags that they even put them in a suitcase when they do traditional and airplane travel.

But in an RV, they’re the hands-down best way we’ve found to pack.

A three piece set of the packing cubes costs $23.99 from Amazon. They come in different colors. Jennifer uses raspberry red (the closest they come to pink). Mike uses blue,

They have a mesh top panel for easy identification of contents, and ventilation,

We store them in the overhead bins above the bed in the Roadtrek. They keep everything wrinkle free and compact. They let you “unpack without unpacking” –that is, you can remove the cubes to get at your stuff, but still keep things neat and tidy.

Trust me, in an RV, or on a boat, or if you want to make your suitcase neat, these are what you need.

You can watch me pack one by clicking the video below:


Question 1: Satellite TV options

Listener Frank asks about taking Direct TV on the road in his RV, what’s involved, the cost and where and how he gets it. [spp-timestamp time=”7:36″]

Since he is already a DirectTV customer, Mike explains he can take his favorite shows with him with the DirectTV Choice Mobile package. He needs a mobile receiver and programming. There are three distributors – King Controls, KVH Industries and Winegard.

Many are  familiar with Winegard because they specialize in RV over-the-air TV antennas. But Winegard also makes satellite dishes. Frank's first step will be to decide what kind of dish he wants. Then whether he will roof mount it or use a tripod.

Dishes start at about $650 or so for Winegatd’s Carryout G2 model that has the ability to be portable or roof mounted. It’s automatic, meaning it automatically acquires all the satellites you will be getting programming from…and it works with not just DirectTV but also other satellite TV providers like DISH and BellTV. This is what Mike recommends. It looks like an upside down bell instead of the traditional dish.

More elaborate dishes can cost as much as $1,800. These expensive dishes let you view all satellites at the same time for maximum programming. You can have different TVs in your RV and watch different programming on them at the same time. They are great to use with DVRs, as you watch and record from different satellites simultaneously.

You will also need a satellite receiver for your RV. They start at $99. You can get one with a built in DVR for $199.

Question 2: Solo traveling when a spouse dies

Reader Trudy asks if Jennifer would consider setting out on her own should something happen to Mike [spp-timestamp time=”19:08″]

Jennifer answers…saying she would. And much more

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, MO. Van City RV [spp-timestamp time=”17:38″]

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.


  • A campfire caused a serious wildfire in Utah – (Read more)  [spp-timestamp time=”19:21″]
  • Fire bans in the western U.S. are making headlines nonstop these days, but campers in Minnesota are being asked to use caution, as well. (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”21:21″]
  • Michelin has recalled truck and RV tires that is says are prone to rupturing. (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”22:05″]
  • Water problems in Illinois are causing at least one campground to close for the season early. (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”23:00″]
  • Yellowstone “Tourons” never cease to amaze – (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”23:53″]
  • Mt. McKinley renamed to original name of Denali by Obama, Trump says he will make it McKinley again is elected  – (Read more) [spp-timestamp time=”25:14″]

This portion of the podcast is brought to you by Alde… the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV [spp-timestamp time=”26:52″]

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 TIP: Meal planning apps

As summer ends and we head into the busiest time of year for many, planning meals ahead of time can help make things less stressful. [spp-timestamp time=”28:35″]

That’s why this week we are bringing you three great apps to help find, schedule, and prepare for meals easier than ever.

Big Oven offers more than 350,000 recipes, featured collections, and menus. It can be customized to lifestyle and diet – even season – and has a feature to schedule meals. Big Oven also helps lets you convert recipes into shopping lists. Better yet, if you have a bunch of ingredients lying around but don’t know what to do with them, just type them into Big Oven and it will give you an idea of what you can make. A basic version is free for iOS, Android, Windows, and Kindle Fire. A paid version expands Big Oven’s capabilities.

The makers of the Pepperplate app say it’s the only app for “serious”. The app allows users to collect and store recipes from around the Internet and also input their own. Pepperplate helps schedule meals ahead of time and also helps make an ngredient shopping list When cooking, you can launch multiple cooking timers at the same time to help manage meal prep. It’s free for iOS, Android, Windows, Kindle Fire, and Nook Color.

Paprika allows users to snag recipes they find online and put them all in one spot for easy reference with the tap of a button. It, too, makes grocery lists to buy the needed ingredients and helps scale recipes to specific serving sizes. Paprika can schedule meals for a week or month also has timers for when food is being prepared. Paprika is $4.99 for iOS, Android, Windows, Kindle Fire, and Nook Color.


Paul Ulreich, Verizon's “Uber User,” tells us about the Canary Home Security System [spp-timestamp time=”30:42″]

While Paul is using it in his home, it would also work, over wifi, in an RV.

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, the nation's largest and most reliable 4G LTE network [spp-timestamp time=”35:31″]

There’s been a lot of talk about Verizon’s new simplified data choices and price plans (aka, the Small, Medium, Large, X-Large plan). With all the chatter surrounding these new plans, it can be hard to decipher what’s fact from fiction.

Let’s set the facts straight and break down the details of this new plan, shall we?

  1. Existing customers will not be able to stay on their current 2-year agreement/plan that allows for discounts on phones. FALSE

Existing customers who remain on MoreEverything plans can still purchase devices with a 2-year contract.

  1. Existing customers still under contract with two-year device plans cannot take advantage of the My Verizon Plans. FALS

Any current customer (no matter if on month-to-month, two-year contract or device payment plan) may choose to move to the new Verizon Data Plan at any time, or stay on their current plan.

  1. If a customer wants to add a new line, they cannot add it to the old plan because it must be activated on the new plan (no discounted devices). FALSE

If current customers want to add a new line to their account on the MoreEverything plan, they can.

Now that you know the facts, decide for yourself. Visit your local Verizon retailer today to learn how you can take advantage of Verizon’s new simplified pricing plans.

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


RV shows are like the mega-malls of the RV world. RV and camping shows are where multiple dealers gather to bring their latest models and offer deals. This provides a great opportunity for prospective buyers to wander between different models, check out various floor plans, ask questions, meet other RVers and find the RV that best suits their needs. [spp-timestamp time=”37:17″]

Hershey, PA, America’s Largest RV Show – Sept. 16-20   33 football fields filled with new models. The Show brings over 45,000 thousand people to the Hershey area. The America's Largest RV Show is held every September in Hershey, PA. It is the first show in the nation to debut manufacturer’s new products. The show is set up differently from many other RV shows since it is laid out by manufacturer instead of dealers making it the easiest way to shop and compare the many RV brands. There are over 21 acres of RVs on display allowing you to shop hundreds of RVs of every make and model. It is so large, you will need at least three days to see it all!

Accessory vendors are a major part of the show – providing you with all the RV and camping accessories you will need. The show also provides quality educational seminars from RV industry experts.

The PA RV & Camping Show debuted in 1968 and has evolved to be the largest RV show of its kind. With the first two days attributed to members of the RV industry and the remaining 5 days dedicated to consumers, it is the largest hybrid show in the country. The show is brought to you by the PA RV & Camping Association (PRVCA).

Listen to episode 48 of this podcast for more information

Pomona, CA Oct. 9-18 –   This is another huge show, 10 days long…48 RV manufacturers, 1,325 RVs on display with 224 different brands  Factory and California dealer representatives will be on hand to answer all your questions and explain the advance technology offered in recreational vehicles.

Acres of vehicles, products, services and special events all located in one area allow you to browse and shop at your leisure. Be sure not to miss the Big Tent filled with exciting RV products and accessories.

If you have an event or RV show that you’d like featured on the podcast, just send it in.

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT     Sommerville, GA and Howard Finster’s Paradise Gardens

This listener report is a perfect stop for a few hours. [spp-timestamp time=”41:38″] For more info on this unique place, visit

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

Leisure Time RV, a family-owned dealership in Winter Garden, Florida, near Orlando has been in business for 45 year and is consistently among the top Roadtrek dealers in North America. They have a full line of the Roadtrek inventory as well as travel trailers and used RVs. Jennifer and I have visited Leisure Time RV and we know the staff and we are very impressed by the honesty, integrity and first rate service we found there. [spp-timestamp time=”44:14″]

INTERVIEW:  Carl and Bobbi Broun describe their RV lifestyle, from Paradise to Paradise.

They were sitting around in their paradise home in Hawaii growing old. They decided they wanted to stay sharp So they bought an RV and started traveling North America. They still have a home in Hawaii Also one in Florida. But at least six months of every year, they travel North America. They have learned lots of lessons, which they gladly share with Mike in this interview. [spp-timestamp time=”46:19″]

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 2015-09-02

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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