This year, I’m planning on winter camping

 This year, I’m planning on winter camping

We're in early November now and while the ground is still bare, nighttime temps are regularly dropping to the upper 20's in my part of Michigan. The leaves are all off the trees and snow can happen any day now.

This year, I'm planning on winter camping 1Out on the interstates, I see a steady stream of motorhomes, travel trailers and fifth wheels making their way south, to warmer climes.

I hope to join them in Florida and the gulf states in January. For a few weeks.

But I also hope to do some winter camping this year.

It's almost a sin in some RV circles to say this but… well… I like winter.

I love snow. The more the better.

And I want to head out there.

My RV is winterized, but as Hank the tech who walked me through the winterizing process in this video explained, I can still use the RV. I can flush the toilet using antifreeze as a chaser. I can use the stove to cook. I'll eat on paper plates so I don't have to wash dirty dishes. I'll bring along bottled water.

There are a bunch of winter festivals, dogsled races, ice fishing contests, snowshoe hikes and the like to take in. A reader invited me to International Falls, MN, where, he says, he volunteers for a dogsled race that is a qualifier for the big Iditarod race up in Alaska. He says the temperature in some years has dipped to 30 below and he was toasty comfortable in his Roadtrek.

Wonder where you keep your parkas and snow-soaked bots and gloves when you come in? Seems like there'd be quite a puddle.

And I suppose camping facilities are a bit limited during winter.

Any winter campers out there? How do you manage? I'd appreciate any and all tips. But winter camping is definitely going to be on my list of 2013 New Year resolutions.


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,

    The dog sled race I was referring to runs from Duluth, MN up to near the BWCA and back – not International Falls. That’s only one of 4 I’m hoping to go to in JAN/FEB 2013.

    Before that, try the Winterer’s Gathering at North House Folk School in Grand Marais, MN 11/15 – 18. Municipal campground is contiguous – electric sites $15/nite Winter rate!

  • My husband and I will head to Hocking County, Ohio to cut wood this weekend and to hunt during deer gun season at the begining of December. The Roadtrek will provide fancy accomidations compared to years past. Not looking forward to carrying the chainsaw and all its mess in The Buggy.
    I am learning a lot by reading your posts and the more experienced treckers responses.

  • What about snow tires? Do you think your existing tires are good enough for snow conditions? What about chains? I live in Alaska so I’ve wondered about using the Roadtrek in the snow as well.

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