Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Finally Comfortable...

As we went through our last trip in the year 2011 - and our last trip for the RV camping "season" - we both commented to each other that we finally feel comfortable inside the Roadtrek. I have talked along in these articles that my relationship with the Roadtrek was one of a love/hate, getting to know you relationship. There were moments when I loved the Roadtrek, and then there were moments - when things went wrong - that I was, let's say, not happy. With that final trip, I realized that I love our Roadtrek 190 Popular!

It took awhile - the whole season for this to happen. There were sleepless nights in the beginning and those first few nights I wondered if I would ever be able to fall asleep inside it. There was a good amount of time devoted to making riding in it a relatively quiet experience - and we almost have all of the rattles and shakes inside as we drive under control. There were the little things and larger things that went wrong. There was the weather, which cannot be blamed on the Roadtrek in anyway, but would not have mattered as much if we were traveling in a regular vehicle and staying in a hotel, but matter a great deal when you need to be aware of ground clearance for unanticipated, October snow storms, and what a hurricane might do to you and the Roadtrek if you decide to weather out the storm inside of it. Yes, there was an adjustment period. That is a good term for it - a better term perhaps than "honeymoon" which should denote only pleasantries. It also takes some time to learn to drive the Roadtrek. It is a large vehicle with VERY limited sight as to what is behind you and on each side of you. I will write about driving and parking the Roadtrek in another article, but for now, while I will tell you right away, that it is not hard to drive - and anyone with driving experience can drive it - it takes some learning, and getting used to, to drive it.

I am not looking forward to the Spring and our next trip out. One of our first trips is going to have to be back to dealer service, because the grey tank handle is popping out again. I had hoped that the first time that I brought this in, the handle mechanism would have been replaced, which I understand is an easy and quick job, but rather than replace it, the mechanism was adjusted. That adjustment did not last long - one trip - and when we were completing the winterizing when we were home - running anti-freeze through the macerator - we found the handle popping out again, not as far as before, but definitely in the open position. I contacted the service center right then, and it is scheduled for replacement when we can come in the Spring. But the important thing is that I am looking forward to our next trip in the Roadtrek.

While we were away in December in the Roadtrek I realized how much I was comfortable in the bed. There is a bit of a cocoon feeling with the walls and ceiling close by but I enjoyed sleeping in it. Once we started to get a routine down inside at night, coming back into the campground, hooking up, closing the curtains, and getting the front seats into lounge chair positions, we were better able to relax. I have pretty much learned to stay out of Meryl's way and let here get the inside set up - she has been able to do that better than I have.

Now, don't think that the Roadtrek stays closed up and untouched until the winter has passed. The Roadtrek needs to be driven - like any car, truck, or van, it cannot just sit idle for several months - unless you do a great deal of preparation to the engine and remove the batteries. No, we will be taking it out semi-regularly, if for nothing more than a drive. The generator has to be run for two hours every month under load, so we will be starting the generator with a space heater on inside for the necessary electric load to keep the generator properly maintained. We also will be hooking it up every so often to our house electricity to keep the batteries charged - the vehicle and coach batteries will be kept charged this way. No, the Roadtrek will be very much a part of us for the winter. And that is OK. There are a couple of things that I want to modify inside before the new season starts.

I will continue to write these articles throughout the winter. I plan to write about some of the how to's about the Roadtrek similar to the how to make the bed article. So I hope that you all will keep reading!


  1. nice season wrap article Robert I always enjoy reading your articles and adventures, as a one time first timer camper learning things sometimes the easy way and sometimes the hard way, one thing has always remained in our 15 plus years camping, we always look forward to the following years adventures, and that's what we do in these cold winter months, plan our trips the following season that always begin on Mother's day weekend for us. Keep writing, and i'll keep reading.

    Bob V. Huzzah!

  2. I certainly agree about your comment about trying to get comfortable sleeping in the Class B. It has taken me 5 months to FINALLY find the right position and bedding combination to be comfortable ... especially on some of the colder nights. Brrrr ... The past few nights sleeping in it I have sleep most of the night through ... except for the necessary bathroom break. :)