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RE: Boulder, County Fairgrounds Open Yet?

Err yeah, I'd stay away in general if you're traveling for pleasure right now. Any available RV space in the Boulder and surrounding area should be left for those evacuating from the fires.
JAC1982 10/19/20 12:44pm RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: Best/worst reviews no help

We are on our third camper, our first two were Keystone toy haulers, 1 bumper pull Raptor (re-branded next model year as a Carbon), 1 5th wheel Impact. Never had any major issues with either one of them. Worst thing that happened was the front AC died on the Impact, and that was due to a defective AC unit itself from Dometic. Even with our new Montana, other than a couple really small items, it's been fine, and 3 of our 4 trips this year were down bumpy dirt roads. 2 full hookup spots, 2 boondock spots. Weather ranging from below freezing to 90 degrees. I think as long as you go in knowing there may be a few little things to fix along the way, you'll be fine. I'm in a few Montana Facebook groups and the stuff many people get really worked up about, seems really silly to me. One lady posted a picture of her "defective" glass stove cover because it wouldn't fold up completely out of the way. Turns out it was just folded wrong. It's a moving house that gets bounced around down the road, stuff will happen sometimes. And, as mentioned above by others, it's only the people with the problems who post most of the time.
JAC1982 10/19/20 12:33pm Toy Haulers
RE: Looking for a quality Toy hauler but discouraged.

I think right now in general is a rough time to try to buy a camper, new or used. I always peruse the Facebook Marketplace as I've always wanted a little fixer upper travel trailer, and the prices people are asking right now are crazy. 7 grand for a 1969 travel trailer that still needs work? 6 grand for a 15 year old pop up? A neighbor of mine is asking $52,000 for their 2016 Impact. I suggested 40-45 when she asked me my opinion (our Impact toy hauler that we recently traded in was a 2017 and we got 50 for it as a trade, right before the Covid wave hit). I agree though that the issues you are seeing are mostly due to poor maintenance. Our old one was in perfect shape except for some oxidation issues on the outside from sitting in the sun... easy fix. Just have to keep looking I think. ATC's are really nice, some friends have one on order. But when she told me what they're paying for it, I nearly choked.
JAC1982 10/19/20 12:17pm Toy Haulers
RE: Booking Camping sites for 2021

Are you sure they're already booked? Many places don't allow you to book this far out. I just tried for a private RV park for Memorial Day but they said 180 days out. CO State Parks is 6 months out. And for the more popular parks, you have to sign in at 8am exactly 6 months out to book it. That was the case even pre-COVID.
JAC1982 10/14/20 02:30pm RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: Yellowstone vs Custer State Park

What an odd comparison. If your only goal is to see bison, I can recommend a few spots along a couple of the interstates here in CO you can go, and save yourself the entrance fees to the parks.
JAC1982 10/14/20 02:28pm RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: 1/2T/huge TT vs strong cross wind = BAADDD DAY

The wind was crazy all along the Front Range on Sunday afternoon. We were on I-25 as well, returning home from a morning RZR ride in Northern CO, and there were warning signs all over saying that lightweight high profile vehicles (IE campers) should exercise extreme caution. The NWS had put out a high wind warning earlier in the day saying forecasts of gusts up to 65mph. We watched a guy with an older Expedition (NOT with the diesel) pulling a pretty long travel trailer. Rear end of the vehicle was sagging. He was poking along at about 40mph (in the area where speed limit is 75). He was lightly swaying too. We were also towing our RZR on a utility trailer but we still hurried up to get around and past him. He should have just pulled over to wait it out.
JAC1982 10/14/20 01:58pm General RVing Issues
RE: Problems unique to Toy Haulers

We've had 2 toyhaulers, both a TT and 5th wheel and now have a traditional 5th wheel. I can't think of anything that is unique to a toyhauler. Just make sure your truck is big enough to pull it, as they typically are heavier.
JAC1982 10/12/20 02:13pm Beginning RVing
RE: Trying to figure out best 5th wheel? Advice appreciated

Bought it yesterday. 10 week wait. We are very excited. Now onto figuring out hitch and best way to learn how to drive it. Woot, congratulations! If you're on Facebook, there's a few Keystone Montana and Montana High Country owners groups that are really helpful. We have a BW Companion hitch. Works great for us. I think the best way to learn to pull it is to take it to a big empty parking lot at first, and just drive it around to get the feeling of it, practice backing it up where there isn't anything to hit behind you, etc. Use the parking spot lines to help. Then drive it on some less busier roads to get used to that... just work your way up to the interstate, just like when you were learning how to drive in general.
JAC1982 10/12/20 01:54pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: NEW TOW VEHICLE ?

I have a 2016 Explorer Sport as my daily driver. I have around 50,000 miles on it. Other than normal maintenance stuff, I have had no problems with it and it's really fun to drive. I've only towed a utility trailer with it though. BUT, it will be tight with 4 kids. The third row is small. I don't use it, as I have dogs instead of kids, so it stays folded down for a large cargo area. Be sure you look at a Sport or Platinum for the 3.5 Eco-Boost. The XLT and Limited only have the non EB 3.5 and I believe their towing capacity is lower. Also when I was shopping, I found pre-2016 models did not all have the towing package, it was an extra option. Also you will need to watch your payload very carefully, especially with 4 kids. You may not be able to tow a trailer and have the whole family in there at once. My payload is something around 1250lbs I believe. I had a Pathfinder as a rental before. It was lower end of course, and it was total garbage. I have no input on the Durango other than I think they have a nice appearance. ETA: One note on the 3.5 EB engine, it really does do better with Premium gas. So that's something to consider. Also I'm not sure you can find a 2 year old used Sport or Platinum (to get the EB engine) for 25k or under, unless it has super high miles. But there isn't much difference between a 2016 like mine, and a 2019. So don't lock yourself into the 2 year old thing.
JAC1982 10/12/20 12:43pm Tow Vehicles
RE: The price of new trucks is beyond comprehension!

Another thing to consider is in some areas, trucks hold their value better than cars. In our area, diesel trucks especially. Case in point, our tow vehicle, a 2017 F350 dually King Ranch, we got a screaming deal on. It only has around 10,000 miles on it as we only use it for towing the camper for vacations. It's still worth $60k at least... we didn't pay much more for it than that. Sticker was near $80. My husband's "daily" truck (which is just to run errands since we both work at home), is a 2019 RAM 1500. It's already lost about 15k in value. He has a new truck on order, another Ford Super Duty (so yes, we will have 2). We are youngish (approaching 40) with no kids, no credit card debt, lots of home equity, save for retirement and have good incomes. Might as well enjoy it while we can, there's no promising a future.
JAC1982 10/12/20 12:32pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Any full timers use a roomba style vac?

I have one in my house and while it helps with the "maintenance" especially with 3 dogs, 2 of which who shed, it's not as good as running an actual vacuum. It also frequently gets stuck in random places. For a space as small as an RV, I think it would be just as easy to use a regular vacuum, and it would only take about 10 minutes a day. Plus it would save you hundreds of dollars since Roombas are expensive.
JAC1982 10/12/20 11:48am General RVing Issues
RE: cleaning the outside of the 5'er

We were never successful at restoring the finish on our last 5th wheel ourselves. It was a dark gray color and oxidized very quickly sitting outside in the sun. We tried all kinds of products, and hired a guy who said he could fix it, and he gave up (and cost us around $500). A neighbor of ours had the same problem with his boat. He took it to a boat place and it was around $2500 to fix. We fixed it by trading it in and building an outbuilding to store the new one in :)
JAC1982 10/12/20 11:18am Fifth-Wheels
RE: Trying to figure out best 5th wheel? Advice appreciated

We liked the new Montana High Country 281ck look and feel for our needs. Thanks for the you tube link. 3 questions : 1. Best way to get the new 281ck? Email a number of local dealers here in Atlanta? 2. Everything I have been told is a Ram 2500 4X4,diesel (max payload 2,170lbs and max towing 17170lbs) should not be an issue? 3. Can we go with a 6.4’ bed vs 8’? Thanks for all the solid responses. Jim I would maybe start with calling Keystone direct to see when it will be available. Since it's not on their website yet, it may not be available at dealers yet either. I do know all manufacturers are having issues right now with sourcing parts, both due to high demand and because of border restrictions (ie a lot of parts come from China). So it's release date may be pushed out. And yes, I was a little annoyed it came out after we already bought our 294 :) I wanted to go as short as possible like you and I liked all the counterspace in the kitchen. We don't use the dinette in ours except to set stuff on it. Trying to get the husband to agree to take it out to put a dog crate there instead. We have 3 bigger dogs so I'm grateful for the extra couch space in the 294 though.
JAC1982 10/06/20 01:25pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: Trying to figure out best 5th wheel? Advice appreciated

We have a 2020 Montana HC 294RL. Same as the 295, only with an RV fridge instead of the residential fridge (we did not want a residential fridge). We like it so far, and have used it in all kinds of weather including below freezing without any issues. We'll be taking it in for one visit to fix a few little things, but otherwise we have had no major issues with it. Most of our trips have been down bumpy dirt roads, and we've done both full hookup and boondock camping with it this year. It has the light grey interior. We shopped for awhile as we were downsizing from a larger toyhauler. We had it narrowed down to this and a few Grand Design Reflection models. Non-HC Montanas and Solitudes were not in our price point. We picked this model because Montana HC's come with the gen prep option, and the GD Reflection doesn't even have it available as an option. We also like the floor plan because you can access nearly everything inside, including the fridge, bed, and bathroom, with all of the slides in. Coming from a dark toyhauler, I also love all the windows including the big front window in the bedroom. It also has a lot of storage for only being 34'. The pantry in the kitchen fits a ton of food, and the big closet in the bathroom fits a lot as well, assuming you don't install the washer/dryer combo there. They are coming out with a 32' HC model for 2021. It's not on their website yet but the number is 281CK. That might be a better option for your tow vehicle as it is lighter. Here is a YouTube walkthrough video of it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hl6hu198Szw
JAC1982 10/05/20 10:42am Fifth-Wheels
RE: RTIC Softside Cooler

BTW even if the ice melts, it's probably still cold in there to keep your drinks cold. I don't put food in the soft side unless I know I'm eating it that day since it could get soggy in the melted ice, but it's great for drinks. I've had the hard side still have ice in it after a week of sitting in the garage area of our former toyhauler (where there was no AC) when it was 100 degrees out. Key there is to use ice blocks in the bottom and not have it in direct sun.
JAC1982 10/02/20 11:12am General RVing Issues
RE: RTIC Softside Cooler

My Yeti softside cooler kept ice for about 48 hours while in my car (so not direct sun). I had a Yeti ice pack in the bottom, then cold drinks were added, then topped off with loose ice. I imagine a similar set up would work for the RTIC.
JAC1982 09/30/20 12:28pm General RVing Issues
RE: What truck do I need to pull this trailer

I don't know what they run now used but we towed a toyhauler that was of a similar pin weight with a 2015 F350 dually diesel and it did great and we had no issues with it. We just traded up to the 2017 when it became vailable because my husband wanted the new body style and didn't like the color we had (insert eyeroll here).
JAC1982 09/28/20 12:07pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: Camping in cold temps, bad idea?

Hi all, I realize there's a recent post about camping in the winter, but it talks about a better insulated fifth wheeler camping in NM subfreezing temps, my situation is different. My travel trailer (Prime Tracer 24DBS) comes with what the manufacturer calls an extended season camping that includes: Roof (R-14) Double Layer Fiberglass Floor (R-14) Extra Thick Bead Foam Front Cap (R-14) Double Layer Fiberglass Insulation Enclosed And Heated Underbelly Enclosed And Heated Holding Tanks I take it I can probably delay winterization until late fall and use it normally? I'm asking because we are planning our last trip of the season for the end of November (Thanksgiving), hoping to camp in the white mountains in NH. It gets pretty cold above tree line on the 4000 footers but in the valleys where the campsites are located the averages for that time of the year are 27F at night to 45F during the day. I wonder, will it be too late into the season for camping with my unit without taken any precautions? If so, what I should worry about to avoid a catastrophe? Thanks in advance! We just returned from a trip to WY where we had temps similar to that for a couple of the days. Nights got that cold, and colder, almost every night. It just warmed up more most days. One day the high only hit 40 with heavy winds. As others have mentioned, if it's sunny, you'll be in better shape. On the 40 degree day, we used our fireplace, which functions as a space heater, and between that and the sun, it kept the living area of the trailer at around 65 degrees, and we are larger than yours. We have a built in LP generator but opted to use a portable generator for our power needs during the day, to conserve propane usage for night. We do have 4 propane tanks, and ran through them in about 5 days. Half of one was used up our first day as we got a little crazy running the AC and then stopped once we saw how much propane the onboard generator was using. The furnace was kept at 64 at night. If we didn't have our dogs with us, we could have gone lower as our bed was plenty warm, but they got cold in the living room :) We used the tank heaters on the coldest nights but I'm not sure we really needed to.
JAC1982 09/23/20 02:26pm Beginning RVing
RE: Real-life experience blocks to aid 6-point leveling system

If you camp on paved driveways with no slope, you won't need blocks. But we've needed them on several occasions when parked on dirt, in fields etc. We keep a storage bin full of them in our basement storage. We had a trip this year where we were on a site so unlevel, we ended up with the front jacks nearly retracted all the way, and our rear drive's side needing to extend all the way, plus some blocks under it.
JAC1982 09/18/20 11:28am Fifth-Wheels
RE: Shearing the sheep

We bought ours in mid-April. I had seen it at an RV show at the beginning of March and then we went to the dealer to talk numbers a week later but they didn't offer us a great deal, especially on our trade. Then about a week after that is when things started hitting the fan w/ Covid, and the stock market crashed. The salesman called us up and said they were basically panicking at the dealership and started renegotiating. We got a far better deal than we would have if we bought it a few weeks before, or waited until about May. Even Keystone threw in some cash to the deal to get us to where we wanted to be. And yup, we financed it. We can well afford it (DINKs under 40) and figure if everything really goes to hell, we'll sell our house (which has tons of equity) and live in the camper LOL! I'm a member of a few Montana groups on Facebook. What some people are trying to get for their used 2018/2019 units is insane.
JAC1982 09/17/20 02:50pm General RVing Issues
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