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Episode 78 Campskunk’s Advice Before You Start a New RV Travel Season

| Updated Mar 9, 2016

Our special guest in this week's edition of the Roadtreking RV Podcast is none other than Campskunk, our resident fulltimer, who is about to end his winter hiatus in Florida and hit the road for another year of RV travel.

But before he does, he shares with us the chores he says every RVer should do before heading out for a new season of RV adventure.

Besides Campskunk, we have lots of audience comments and questions, a tip from Jennifer on our most often used RV accessory, some tips on how your smartphone can double as an RV walkie-talking for your RVing pals and a fun off the beaten path report about some little known must-see attractions in Colorado.


Complete shownotes for Episode 78 of the Roadtreking RV Podcast, released March 9, 2016.

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK – A clock and indoor/outdoor thermometer for the RV

My tip this week is about the one device in our RV we probably use more than any other device or appliance. The clock! [spp-timestamp time=”6:19″]

Specifically, a very handy wall clock. We use SkyScan Atomic Digital Clock with Indoor and Outdoor Temperature. We got it on Amazon for $38.

Sky Scan with outdoor sensorThere’s an outdoor sensor that Mike mounted on our outside rear door with industrial strength Velcro… On the inside, he mounted the main display on the wall between the rear bed and the galley, also with Velcro. Both the sensor and the display stay firmly in place, even on bumpy roads.

The display is very easy to read, especially with those three inch time digits.

We get an inside temperature reading and an outside temperature, plus the time, as well as the day and date. We like this clock because it is always accurate. That’s because it is self-setting and uses atomic time. Every day around 2 am, it syncs by radio waves to the official US time standard in Fort Collins CO. All you do is select the time zone you are in and the clock automatically adjusts the time and, like it will do on Sunday March 13, automatically sets itself to Daylight Savings Time.

The clock is quite attractive. The one we picked has black frame that matches very nicely with the gray and ebony interior colors of our Roadtrek.


Comments and questions from the audience deal with:

  • How to get a great RV Packing List (hint: email Mike),[spp-timestamp time=”8:18″]
  • The Canary streaming cameras as a security device for the RV [spp-timestamp time=”11:20″]
  • Photo tips [spp-timestamp time=”17:12″]
  • RV comparisons [spp-timestamp time=”19:37″]

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.

All three have a great fly and drive program. They'll pick you 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


Trial to begin for man accuse of killing a couple who banished on an RV trip [spp-timestamp time=”28:38″]

California RV Park invests $1.1 million in solar [spp-timestamp time=”28:36″]

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 percent 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: Turn your smartphone into a walkie-talkie

If you prefer the nuance and context of a phone call, but the simplicity and convenience of a text, you’re in luck. [spp-timestamp time=”32:29″]

That’s because a number of apps allow you to record and sent short audio messages – kind of like a good old fashioned walkie talkie. I have three such such apps to suggest this week.

Zello promises to turn your phone or tablet into a walkie talkie with its lightning fast speed and free push-to-talk feature. Just push a button, record your message, and send over a WiFi or data network – just like you would with a walkie talkie. You can set it up to talk with others privately or create or join a larger public group. Zello is free for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone.

Aptly named Roger is another app with walkie talkie-like features. Just a push the big simple button, record your message, and send. One especially cool feature about the Roger app is you can see the location, weather, and time of day of the person who is receiving your message. And all you need to get started is the phone number of the person you want to start communicating with via Roger – and recipients don’t even need the app installed. The app is free for iOS and Android.

Voxer also has the ability to deliver short recorded messages. You can decide to listen to message when they’re delivered or wait until you’re in a more private setting. You can also see the location of others, and even send photo, videos and your location to others through Voxer. Voxer is free for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone.

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 it comes to network quality in the United States, J.D. Power ranks Verizon highest across all six regions among U.S. wireless providers.

The study surveyed more than 41,000 wireless subscribers across the U.S. about the performance of calls, messaging and data quality on their mobile devices.

This is the third time Verizon took the top spot in all six regions, and comes on the heels of the recent RootMetrics National Rootscore® Report that ranked Verizon’s network highest in overall network performance for the fifth consecutive testing period.

Consistently ranked #1 for network performance by third-party testing companies, Verizon continues to listen to what’s important to customers and is committed to providing the best network experience.

In addition to enhancing XLTE coverage and providing rural coverage, Verizon focused on increasing network capacity in select, high traffic locations across the U.S. And, while the company is dedicated to enhancing its 4G LTE network, Verizon is currently testing 5G technology.

Isn’t it time you joined the nation’s most reliable network? Visit your local Verizon retailer today to learn how you can switch and save.

Don’t forget to visit for stories about how technology can enhance and improve your life.

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT – Colorado’s Bishop Castle

Tom Burkett reports on some interesting off the beaten path spots in SE Colorado, like Bishop Castle, a fascinating free form structure that you just need to see. [spp-timestamp time=”38:00″]

He also suggests a ghost town and a scenic and historic byway.

Campskunk's Tips on RV chores to do before starting the new travel season

Among his tips: [spp-timestamp time=”42:02″]

  • Wash/Wax the exterior of your RV
  • Pull everything out of it, clean and get rid of everything you didn't use last season, repacking evrything you do need in places that correspond to how often you use them and how easy they are to reach
  • Repaint interior paint chips, clean, reseal, spruce up and reorganize storage drawers
  • Do maintenance, oil changes, tire rotations, etc
  • Top off with propane

Mike Wendland

Published on 2016-03-09

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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