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RV Podcast #181: Making sense of turnpike tolls

| Updated Feb 28, 2018

As the warm weather starts to arrive, many are planning their cross country RV adventures. Many of those routes will be on toll roads. Do you need to purchase a sticker or toll device for your RV? Which toll stickers are the best to get? What happens when you encounter unmanned tool booths?

In this episode, we answer those questions and sort out all those potential issues with an expert who will help us all make sense of turnpikes and toll roads.

Plus RV News and Tips, listener questions and comments and a suggested destination for your bucket list and much more.

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.


WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”2:10″]

RV Podcast #181: Making sense of turnpike tolls 1As the nation copes with late winter storms and flooding, we’re still down along the Emerald coast on Florida’s panhandle enjoying sunny skies and upper 70 temps.

People are swimming in the gulf…shorts and to shirt weather

RV Podcast #181: Making sense of turnpike tolls 2
Bo wearing he new Doggles Goggles

We’re planning our next adventure, a leisurely exploration of the Alabama and Mississippi Gulf coast, Louisiana and into Texas, where we hope to time our arrival to the blooming of the bluebonnets, a dainty little plant which paints the sandy, rolling hills of coastal and southern Texas with sheets of royal-blue in the early spring. They have already begun to bloom in many places across Texas thanks to recent, unseasonably warm weather.

We report that Bo no longer has the cone of shame. He either got some sand in his eye or was scratched while playing in the Destin, FL dog park last week and needed the cone for a few days to keep him from itching it. It has healed up well but we have on order a pair of something called Doggles to keep him from doing it again.

Here’s what caught our attention this week: 

Wyoming legislature wants to collect new wildlife fee from Yellowstone visitors

There is a move underway in the Wyoming legislature to collect a fee from Yellowstone National Park visitors for wildlife management. The states surrounding Yellowstone say there is a cost they incur from wandering elk, bison and other creatures that leave Yellowstone's property and collide with cars, spread disease among cattle, and cause other problems. A bill proposing the new fee is moving through the Wyoming legislature but it will need the federal government's approval to take effect. To learn more click here.

More than 200 earthquakes strike Yellowstone

Speaking of Yellowstone, did you hear that 200 earthquakes hit the iconic park over two weeks in February? Geologists say the swarm of quakes is nothing to worry about. In fact, Yellowstone gets about 1,000 to 3,000 earthquakes each year, and scientists say the quakes do not mean the super volcano under Yellowstone is ready to blow. Click here or here for more info.

RV industry brought billions into U.S. economy

Outdoor recreation accounted for 2 percent of the U.S. economy in 2016, about $374 billion according to a recent report from the U.S. Commerce Department. The impact of outdoor recreation on the U.S. economy is growing. While the report looked at boating, fishing, hunting and a variety of activities, it noted that outdoor activities centered on motorized vehicles, including RVs and motorcycles, were particularly popular, bringing in $59.5 billion with most of that from RVs alone. To read more click 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=”16:16″]

I always have my eyes open for tips for you when visiting folks in their RVs. Not long ago while hanging out with my friend Lisa Gruner from Huntsville, AL, I noticed she had a rather unique privacy curtain separating the back from the front of her RV.

It didn’t cost much of anything except for a couple of stick on hooks. And it involved a bright and colorful beach towel.

Now, be sure to send me YOUR tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox.

I love hearing from you!

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  To see our Rad Power Bikes in action, just click here.

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”22:00″]

A listener named Pat asks about whether Roadtrek motorhomes have slides.


Here’s some email questions we have received:

In one of your videos you showed a sprinter side door screen with magnets.  You said it was new and aftermarket. So, how do you like it now?  Jennifer did not say who made it.., so who makes it, what is website. Have you come across any other you might like better? Thanks!! – Mike

(Call your Roadtrek dealer)

Hi Mike & Jennifer, I was wondering if Roadtrek is has a group/membership that travel to places together and if it is open to new travelers? Can you explain Roadtrekers? Thank you -Nancy

(Check out our Facebook Group at

The other day I saw on one of your Youtube blogs that you had purchased at on time a Stowaway carrier for your RoadTrek CS Adventurous.  I, too,  have a 2017 Roadtrek  CS Adventurous XL 4×4. I am looking for extra storage and was intrigued with your discussion of the Stowaway Carrier.  In reading the reviews by individuals who had a Mercedes Benz diesel Roadtrek I noted a common problem described by each—When they used the adapter to connect the flat 4-prong end from the carrier to the 6-prong round receiver near the trailer receiver hitch, the Mercedes Blind spot warning system was eliminated.  Did you have this problem and what did you do to solve it?  Or, did you elect to live with the loss of the warning system?  Looking forward to your thoughts.
I have talked to Mercedes and they tell me I have to live with it because the sensors on the bumper are so sensitive that the red warning light would continuously flash sensing a object (trailer) behind the rig.  I have certainly learned a lot from you and Jennifer about the Roadtrek and have enjoyed all of the “pearls” and “ratifacts”. Keep ‘em comin’. Mike R

(That’s why we stopped using the Stowaway and another even more deluxe one we tried out)

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV  Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’ RVs with locations St. Louis, Missouri; Las Vegas, Nevada; Kalispell, Montana and now… Colorado Springs, Colorado..

INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK [spp-timestamp time=”34:20″]

As the warm weather starts to arrive, may are planning their cross country RV adventures. Many of those routes will be on toll roads. Do you need to purchase a sticker or toll device for your RV? Which toll stickers are the best to get? What happens when you encounter unmanned tool booths?

In this episode, we answer those questions and sort out all those potential issues with an expert who will help us all make sense of turnpikes and toll roads.

Our guest is Danny Pryor, the executive director of Turnpike Information Company, overseeing a website dedicated to providing information on toll roads throughout the United States.

RV Podcast #181: Making sense of turnpike tolls 3

To learn more about the Turnpike Information Company click here. For a helpful breakdown of what passes work where, visit the Turnpike Information Company site here.

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 [spp-timestamp time=”55:25″]

RV Podcast #181: Making sense of turnpike tolls 4
Steve Van Dinter

By Steve Van Dinter
Verizon Wireless

Parenting in the Digital Age Part 2

Last week we talked about the dangers our kids face when online and how important it is to talk to them when young so they’re prepared.

A study by Pew Research Center found 92 percent of kids age 13-17 go online daily. And social media tends to be a big draw – with the sharing of pictures right up at the top. Did you know, though, that the location you took the photo can be embedded in the photo itself? That’s why it’s important to check your child’s phone and make sure this feature is disabled. You can turn off geotagging for Android and Apple devices in the settings menu. Otherwise your child may be unknowingly sharing the location of their home and school.

Whether you have a tablet-obsessed child, or a smartphone-addicted teen, you can monitor the way they use these devices. For example, Family Base by Verizon allows parents to take back family time by limiting access to calls, texts and data, blocking unwanted contacts, viewing and monitoring a child’s text and call history, setting filters to block access to inappropriate apps/websites and more. Although you can’t be everywhere all the time, apps like these can help you rest assured someone is always watching to keep them safe.

The internet and social media have greatly enhanced our lives, but as they say, with great power comes great responsibility. That’s why it’s important to start conversations early with your children. And if you're unsure how to begin, well that’s where Google can help.

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.

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT  [spp-timestamp time=”58:05″]

Craters of the Moon is a U.S. National Monument and National Preserve in the Snake River Plain in central Idaho that is like no where else on earth, a volcanic wonderland that is easy and fun to explore in one of the weirdest landscapes you can find anywhere.

And it’s perfect for Class B recreational vehicles.

Craters of the Moon formed during eight major eruptive periods between 15,000 and 2000 years ago. Lava erupted from the Great Rift, a series of deep cracks that start near the visitor center and stretch 52 miles (84 km.) to the southeast. During this time the Craters of the Moon lava field grew to cover 618 square miles (1600 square km).

RV Podcast #181: Making sense of turnpike tolls 5
Looking out from one of the lava caves at Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve

And it’s still pretty active. Over the past 30 million years, this region has experienced extensive stretching. A recent example of these on-going forces was the 1983 Mount Borah earthquake. During that event the highest point in Idaho, Mount Borah, got a bit higher when a magnitude 6.9 earthquake occurred across the base of the Lost River Range.

As Jennifer and I toured the preserve, National Park Service rangers told us the volume of past eruptive events suggests that slightly over one cubic mile (4.2 cubic km.) of lava will be erupted during the next event. And that is expected within the next 1,000 years – relatively soon on the geologic time table.

The park is very accessible to cars, small trucks and small RVs. A seven mile loop road takes you past all the major interest points, with comfortable walking trails everywhere.

There’s a nice first come, first server $10 a night campground at Craters of the Moon, right on the lava beds. The 51 sites sare perfect for tents, Class B or Class C motorhomes but too small for big rigs, though there are a couple of sites one could squeeze into. There is fresh water and restrooms but no hookups, showers or waste water dump.

To get there, plan on driving two-lanes. Craters of the Moon is located 18 miles southwest of Arco, Idaho on Highway 20/26/93, 24 miles northeast of Carey, Idaho on Highway 20/26/93, 84 miles from Idaho Falls, and 90 miles from Twin Falls.

Give yourself two to four hours to see it all, longer if you want to walk to the top of the cinder cone or check out the caves.

To see some photos of our visit, go to:

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.

RV Shows this weekend 

Here are the TV shows scheduled for the coming weekend [spp-timestamp time=”1:04:20″]

31st Annual Battle Creek Camper & RV Show

March 1-4

Kellogg Arena

Battle Creek, MI


53rd Annual Red River Valley Sportsmen's Show

March 1-4

Fargo Dome

Fargo, ND


Colorado RV, Sports & Travel Show

March 1-4

National Western Complex

Denver, CO


CNY RV & Camping Show

March 1-4

New York State Fairgrounds

Syracuse, NY


Milwaukee RV Show

March 1-4

Wisconsin Exposition Center

West Alias, WI


Ocala RV Show

March 1-4

Florida Horse Park

Ocala, FL


Greater Philadelphia RV Show

March 1-4

Greater Philadelphia Expo Center

Oaks, PA


Toronto Spring Camping & RV Show & Sale

March 1-4

International Centre

Toronto, ON


Central Illinois RV Show

March 2-4

Peoria Civic Center

Peoria, IL


Central Valley's Sportsmen's Boat, RV & Outdoor Living Show

March 2-4

Kern County Fairgrounds

Bakersfield, CA​​​​​​​


Fredericksburg RV Show

March 2-4

Fredericksburg Expo & Conference Center

Fredericksburg, VA


New Orleans Spring RV & Camping Show

March 2-4

Pontchartrain Center

Kenner, LA


Oregon State Eugene Spring RV Show

March 2-4

Lane County Fairgrounds

Eugene, OR


Rhode Island RV & Camping Show

March 2-4

Rhode Island Convention Center

Providence, RI


Springfield RV Mega Show

March 2-4

Ozark Empire Fairgrounds

Springfield, MO


10th Annual Spring Clean-Out RV Show

March 3-5

Germain Arena

Estero, FL

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 2018-02-28

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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