Welcome to another edition of the RV Podcast – Your Guide to Freedom and Fun through RV Travel. This week we meet a remarkable woman, Carolyn Rose of the YouTube Channel Carolyn’s RV Life. Carolyn left a big corporate job in the city for a life mostly spent in the boonies, traveling alone in her RV, to follow her dreams.
Carolyn is our Interview of the Week on this 274th episode of the RV podcast, being released on Jan 1, 2020, the first day of a new year and a new decade. So Happy New Year Fellow Travelers and welcome to our New Year’s Day edition of the podcast. Besides the interview, we have RV News, your questions, and much more.
But right now, my lifelong traveling companion and my bride…Jennifer.
WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK
We took last week off for Christmas and have had a great Holiday season with family.
Yesterday we traveled to Frankenmuth, MI, home of Bronner’s famous Christmas Wonderland. It was surprisingly crowded even though Christmas was last week and they don’t discount their decorations because they are open 361 days a year, closed only on Christmas Day, New Year’s Day and Easter.
We’re getting ready for our annual winter campout in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula next week, where we’ll gather with several dozen RV Lifestyle Fellow Travelers.
And the day after we get back from the UP, we head to Tampa, FL to spend a week at the Tampa RV Supershow. We’ll be doing Meet and Greets every day during the show from 2-3PM Eastern Time at the Leisure Travel Vans display.
On Thursday Jan. 16, we’ll be at a big party that everyone is invited to that is held at the Wing House right near the Fairgrounds. We’ll put info in the shownotes for this episode at rvlifestyle.com/274
On Friday we’ll be at the Islamorada Restaurant at Bass World in nearby Brandon to meet with a group of Leisure Travel Van owners. They call their club the Flamingoes.
And every day during the show we’ll be roaming the fairgrounds doing stories. If you see be sure to introduce yourself!
This part of the podcast is brought to you by Dish Outdoors, which lets RVers pay as they go and watch HD satellite television from wherever they are camped with easy to set up gear made with the RVer in mind. Just go to https://rvlifestyle.com/dish for details on the service and special deal just for listeners of this podcast
RV LIFESTYLE NEWS OF THE WEEK
People breaking rules and getting close to Yellowstone wolf pups being blamed their deathSad news out of Yellowstone National Park last week for all wolf lovers. Two wolf pups died after being struck by a car back in November. Officials said the pups’ death was tied to them losing their fear of humans. Park officials did their best to keep people away from the wolves – closing off the area around their den, requiring people stay 100 yards away when they left their den, hazing them to scare them of roads and people, and so on. But people kept breaking the rules and getting close for pictures. After losing their fear of humans, the pups kept getting too close to roads, which ultimately, park officials said, led to them being hit by a vehicle and dying.
New Mexico's White Sands National Monument is now White Sands National Park
It's now official: America has a new national park. Last Friday New Mexico's White Sands National Monument became White Sands National Park. This brings the number of national parks to 62. White Sands became a national monument in 1933 and plans were underway for years to turn the unique spot, home to the world's largest gypsum dune field, into a national park for some time. Officials hope the designation will help the local economy.
French paper runs feature on Roadtrek
After driving a Roadtrek for years, we have promised to keep our readers informed as best we can when we see or hear any news on the brand. Well, last week a French publication ran a story saying 70 employees were hired by Rapido are currently producing camper vans. Roadtrek is now owned by a French company called Rapido, which bought the brand and an Ontario, Canada, factory earlier this year when the company was in bankruptcy court. The entire article was in French, and seemed to be more a feature on how Rapido is now the only European RV company on North American soil. It said Rapido plans to produce 400-500 Roadtreks next year on Fiat Ducato, Mercedes Sprinter and soon the Ford chassis. If you want to check it out, click here.
The original male wolf on Michigan's Isle Royale National Park killed by new wolves brought to park
We have shared here the National Parks work to increase the wolf population at Michigan's Isle Royale National Park by taking wolves from neighboring states and Ontario and moving them to the remote island. The process has been difficult. Some wolves died in the transport. One escaped the island when Lake Superior froze and went to Minnesota. And now, just out this week, the lone, 12-year-old male wolf born on the island was killed by the new wolves. Whereabouts of the lone 10-year-old female born on the island is unknown. Also killed by other wolves is a female recently brought over. Apparently there are now eight male and seven female wolves. The animals which were recently brought over have collars, and officials say they are living close to one another, but have not formed a new pack. The new wolves were brought to the island to hunt moose whose population has grown out of control, wrecking the eco-system.
No one would argue that camper van living has hit the mainstream among outdoor enthusiasts, with many of us enjoying going off grid, boondocking, and experiencing the freedom of getting out there. That is why we read with interest a story looking at how the lifestyle caught on this last decade, studying the role social media and millennials played in particular. We bought our first camper van – a used Roadtrek – in early 2012 and started a blog and living the lifestyle then. (click here to read our story.) We can also attest to the growing trend breathing new life in the RV industry, but our experience for these past eight-plus years is the lifestyle attracts people of a certain mindset, seeking freedom and adventure, more so than people of only a certain generation. What do you think?
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LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK
I follow your YouTube videos and I have a question for you, I am thinking about buying a RV and I noticed that you don't tow a car. Will your Class B MH tow a car? I can imagine that after getting setup in a park and then realizing the you need something from the grocery store, what then? I am toying between a 5th wheel and a medium size MH. If you can give me any insight, I would appreciate it. Thanks. Harold, Texas
My wife and I have been enjoying your channel and content. Emails too. We currently have a bumper pull and when we purchased it a couple of years ago we were on the fence between a B+ or C Sprinter and perhaps an older ford van style C or B. But I already owned a truck and decided a bumper pull was our best option. Additionally my nephew owns a diesel repair business in Washington State and at the time (2016/17 I think) he strongly advised us against the Sprinter because he felt there were far too many issues as they began hitting the 60K miles and above. My question to you is have you put those kind of miles on a previous unit, have you experienced or heard of people experiencing issues, specifically emissions, injectors and electrical related gremlins, and lastly are you aware of Mercedes/Sprinter addressing these types of issues in later model years? We’re beginning to think that perhaps the Class b/b+/c is the way we want to go once again and am leery of the Sprinter. I have no inside knowledge of the Ford Chassis either. Any advice experience you have would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Brian.
Do you have a question you’d like us to answer, or a comment on the things we’re discussing. If so, we invite you to leave us that question or comment on the special voicemail number we have for the podcast – it’s 586-372-6990. If you are driving and can’t write it down right now, just go to the RV Lifestyle travel blog at rvlifestyle.com and scroll down the page. You’ll see that number prominently posted on the blog.
This part of the RV Podcast is brought to you by Battle Born Batteries, maker of quality, safe and reliable lithium batteries that can be installed in just about every RV. Get in touch with Battle Born to find out what lithium batteries and an upgraded energy management system can add to your RV Lifestyle. Check them out at https://rvlifestyle.com/lithium
RV INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK
This week we meet a remarkable woman, Carolyn Rose of the YouTube Channel Carolyn’s RV Life. Carolyn left a big corporate job in the city for a life mostly spent in the boonies, traveling alone in her RV, to follow her dreams.
Freecampsites.net is the website Carolyn uses as a guide to find her own boondocking spots.
Here’s a Video Version of the Interview.
The interview of the week is brought to you by SunshinestateRVs.com, where every new motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country
OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT
By Tom & Patti Burkett
Ed Galloway was born in Wisconsin, but his story really begins in Oklahoma. As a young man skilled in woodworking and blacksmithing, he got a job at Sand Springs Home outside Tulsa. The home was founded by Charles Page as a refuge for orphans and children whose parents couldn’t take care of them, and the home itself is a story for another episode, but Ed came here to teach skilled trades to the young men living here. At the age of 57, he retired to property he owned just outside the small town of Foyil, and settled into what many would call his life’s work.
He first built an impressive craftsman home, then a smokehouse and a shop building. He tried his hand at violin making. He turned out to be a good luthier, and his instruments were widely sold in this part of the country. Eventually he built the fiddle house to showcase his product. You can see many of his creations in the house today. As his reputation grew, he expanded into furniture and some home decorations, but during this time he began to develop a fascination with Native Americans and their distinctive art.
In 1937 he began work on his first totem pole. When it was complete, eleven years later, it was ninety feet tall and covered with carvings of animals and native American symbols. The pole is hollow, and on the inside are painted landscapes and more totem poles. The entire pole rests on a turtle, symbolic of the turtle island stories in native mythology. All the carvings are painted in bright colors. Interestingly, Galloway got most of his inspiration and many of his ideas from National Geographic magazines and picture postcards.
There are many other creations on Galloway’s patch, including his beautiful house and smokehouse, gates with a fish motif, several more smaller totem poles, and whimsically made picnic tables. If you’re a woodworker or musician, you’ll appreciate the variety and skill shown in the many fiddles at the fiddle house.
Outsider art, also called folk art and visionary art, is defined as work created by untrained practitioners. The roadways of the USA are rich in it, and if you get off the highways and wander the backroads you’re sure to see some. A few of our favorites are Howard Finster’s Paradise Garden in Georgia, Dick & Jane’s Spot in Washington, the Garden of Eden in Kansas, Salvation Mountain in California, and Lakenenland in Michigan. Come join us in the hunt for new ones, out here off the beaten path.