There’s a dusting of snow on my RV

 There’s a dusting of snow on my RV

The first accumulating snow of the season fell last night near my Michigan home and as I look out at my motorhome sitting on the driveway, I swear I hear it calling me to get out of town and get warm.

There's a dusting of snow on my RV 1Alas, as I look out, that's all I can do. Look. I'm standing with the support of a walker. Five days ago, I had a total knee replacement.

I picked this time for the surgery specifically because it is the least busy time for RVing. Although the first wave of snowbirds typically leave the Midwest and Northern states around Halloween, most wait until after Christmas. We're the same. As much as we can't wait to start touring again, Thanksgiving and Christmas are filled with family and we don't want to be away from them.

But that's not to say that we don't have places to go. I'd like to make the big RV industry show in Louisville the Monday after Thanksgiving. My surgeon is dubious about that. While three weeks is the normal time you're housebound from this kind of surgery, such a long drive could cause lots of swelling. “We'll see,” he says. Reminds me when my kids were young. I'd use that phrase to shut them up, never intending to let them do whatever it was they were asking.

But by mid-December, says my doc, assuming no complications and that I've dutifully done my physical therapy, I should be good to go.

We've got a major tour set, trying to visit the big RV areas in Florida, attending the Tampa RV show in mid-January, swinging across the Gulf States and then perhaps to Arizona via the Texas Hill Country. I will be back in Michigan in mid-February and will do some winter camping as I cover the Michigan UP200, an Iditarod qualifying dogsled race. Then New England in the spring, Branson in May, the Family Motor Coach Association reunion in Wyoming in June and the California-to-Oregon coast over the summer.

What I'm looking for in all these places, of course, are stories of the people and places that make RVing so much fun. I'd welcome your suggestions. Where should we go? Who should we meet?

Even though I'm temporarily hobbling with my new knee, I can't wait to get going again.

This RV travel bug has bit hard. Wanderlust is an addiction, isn;t it?

Mike Wendland

Mike Wendland is a veteran journalist who, with his wife, Jennifer, travels North America in a small motorhome, blogging about the people, places, joys and adventure of RV life on the road at He and Jennifer also host the weekly RV Podcast and do twice-weekly videos on the YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel. They have written 10 books on RV travel.


  • Mike, hope you have a very speedy recovery and you are able to get on the road soon. I look forward to more travel news. When you are in Florence, Oregon make sure you ride on one of the big rigs over the sand dunes…..miles of sand dunes…..what a thrill!! The big rigs are driven by professionals and are much faster than the small dune buggies. I believe there is a state campground right next door.

  • Kirk Creek Campground,Big Sur and Beachside State Park just north of Yachats OR-2 of my top favorites. And just north of Lincoln City OR stop in at the Pelican Pub and Brewery in Pacific City-try the Kiwanda Creme Ale,my favorite and the food rocks ! If you make it to Portand you have to go to Ken’s Artisan Bakery -the best bread in the Universe .

  • On way to Tampa Show, swim with the manatees at Crystal River, assuming your knee is up to that. We used Capt. Mike’s. This up-close encounter is one of the highlights of our yearly FL trips.
    Down the road (19) we like Tarpon Springs with a large Greek population and the sponge diving!
    At the Tampa Show, we stay on grounds with electric service but w/o sewer, we go to Lazy Days @ I-4 & exit 10 to dump tanks. Also a great big campground at the this dealership, restaurant, huge pool, cont. breakfast, Starbucks inside the dealership!
    To see herds of manatees, south of Tampa there is a power plant (2 stacks seen from anywhere) and they have built a very nice (free) viewing area where hundreds of manatee swim to the warm waters flowing from the plant.
    Also north of Orlando is Blue Spring State Park, a beautiful park but not too many sites so make reservations. We lucked out and were there at 1pm and got one that opened up. Manatees stay at the warm springs. You will find that state parks in Florida are filled the Northerners ( no offense) and Canadians and are sometimes hard to get into last minute, as you and I like to travel! I still never make reservations!
    Ringling Brothers Museum at Sarasota is a must see! (vast art collection, mansion & museum)
    I love the Red Coconut RV on Fort Myers Beach and stay beachside though it is expensive. A shuttle takes you to shops and great restaurants on the beach road.
    We like North Beach RV at St. Augustine sandwiched between the Atlantic beach and the Intracoastal Waterway with great restaurants on both, just walk to either.
    Mike, I could go on here forever. We live in SW LA (along I-10) and travel to FL often. I would also have great ideas for your trip through the Gulf States all the way through TX too. Contact me anytime. What a great time to do travel research while you are taking it easy on your “new parts!”

  • Glad our nice 2010 RoadTrek 190 Popular is garaged kept, glad we have not had any snow, hope not to have snow when we leave for FL.

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