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 > How cold can you go?

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campbikemom

New York

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Posted: 10/16/19 11:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This is the time of year that we usually embark on our last camping trip. We were planning on making the trip last weekend our last of the year, but my 3 (soon to be 4) year old asked if we could go camping for his birthday after he saw another kid having a "camping birthday party." His birthday in mid-November.

I think it's a GREAT idea - save for the fact that we live in Central NY and we can have temperatures below freezing. Our current camper does not have an enclosed and heated underbelly. So, how cold can we reasonably expect to camp without disaster striking? Would high 20's/low 30's be OK or is anything close to freezing too risky?

Also, we could be crazy and camp in the trailer for a nice dry, heated placed to sleep and just not fill the water tanks. However, the camper hasn't been winterized so not sure that would even be OK.

pbeverly

South Carolina

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Posted: 10/16/19 12:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I camped in SC last January and it hit 18. I filled the fresh water tank the evening before and disconnected my hoses. No issues. I would think a heated camper would keep everything inside/underneath from freezing. The only issue we had was the grey water tank value froze up so I couldn't drain it the morning we left, black water was fine.


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RobWNY

Jamestown, NY

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Posted: 10/16/19 12:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I would be concerned about freezing lines in those temperatures if the 20's stuck around for any length of time but I would be more concerned with finding a campground that's still open in NY in mid November. On the bright side, the long range forecast is calling for temperatures in the high 40's-low 50's through mid November in NY. If you find a campground, why not just winterize the camper, bring bottled water for drinking and cooking, and use the campground facilities for everything else. then you can just concentrate on having a great time and don't have to worry about anything happening to the camper.


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brant_c

midwest

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Posted: 10/16/19 12:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our last camper was a 2006 Timberland RPM without an enclosed unbelly.

We camped at 40* days and 20* nights for two nights. No problem.

But I would do what RobWNY recommends...winterize and use the camp ground facilities.


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wing_zealot

East of the Mississippi

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Posted: 10/16/19 01:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have camped through winter months, however, I left the camper winterized and didn't use the water. I had 5 gallon jugs of water for drinking, washing up, etc. and disposed of it outside. In the past, I hunted in late November, basically boondocking, and the restroom was a hole dug in the ground.

pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

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Posted: 10/16/19 02:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi,

You may start to have serious problems at about 23 F. YMMV


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ken56

Tennessee

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Posted: 10/16/19 03:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We came back from FL on the 1st of Jan. last year and stopped for an overnight in GA. Down to 28 that night. Our trailer is a '17 Laredo and has the cold weather package insulation. I used the electric fireplace AND the furnace set at 65 for backup and we were comfortable with that. Dealing with water in those temps is another challenge though. Campground had their water shut off but we had 1/2 tank of fresh water and had not emptied the holding tanks yet and did that in the morning with no issue. Nothing frozen. I am not a fan of cold weather camping.

Lwiddis

Los Angeles area :(

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Posted: 10/16/19 04:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

“You may start to have serious problems at about 23 F.“

But I still get nervous at 30F.


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Huntindog

Phoenix AZ

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Posted: 10/16/19 04:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I do not use campgrounds. I have camped in 9 below with daytime highs of 15. We had no issues, other than my extra water jugs freezing solid. We did not bring them inside as we were negligent in watching the weather forcast.

My TT is not stock though. It did come with a heated enclosed underbelly, which I improved on by adding another heat vent from the furnace line. I also insulated the entire underbelly with 1" thick R7 insulation. Even the inside of the frame rails. Basically the underbelly is now a large cooler, which has hot furnace air blowing in at 2 locations, one on the fresh water tank. I also insulated all of the plumbing and installed heat tape on all of it. The heat tape manufactuer claims It is good to 45 below. Never been that cold, so I cannot vouch for that.
When camping in exreme cold, we use the propane furnace and generator power non stop. We have a LOT of gas and propane on hand. It is some work, and we are out there for a reason.



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DutchmenSport

Indiana

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Posted: 10/16/19 04:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We've cold weather camped for years in all 3 of our previous TT's and now our 5er. Our current 5er does not count toward your question, as it's a 4 season, good for zero degrees, provided the furnace stay on.

However, our previous 3 TT's were not so robust. But we winter camped anyway.

The way you do it is to go ahead and winterize the camper and then absolutely no water goes down any drain, nor does any water go into any tanks.

Fresh water is carried in in jugs, or 5-6 gallon containers, (or in our case a 35 gallon tank). Dishes are washed in a pan (not at the sink so the temptation to dump down the sink is eliminated). We keep a port-a-potty in the bathroom that has no dependency on running water, and dump it every day into a pit toilet, or (at home) into a running toilet somewhere.

Basically, you use your camper exactly the same way you'd use a tent. Tents don't have water, but a water station is usually set up on a picnic table. You do the same at a designated spot inside the camper. Used water can be tossed out the door, if this is acceptable, bathroom waste goes into a port-a-potty and dumped appropriately.

Hot water? Heat water in a pan on the stove top. Washing? Take cat baths with that hot water from the stove. Baby wipes too.

Pile laundry and do it when you get back home.

You just have to use your camper like a glorified tent, no water in the system at all, and have a great time!

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