5 Great State Parks

In an earlier post I detailed My 5 Favorite State Parks. With nearly 8,000 state park in America, there are hundreds of state parks worthy of a visit.

A short loop nature trails at the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park visitor center. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A short loop nature trail at the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park visitor center. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Here are 5 Great State Parks.

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, California

The largest state park in the contiguous United States, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is flanked by rugged mountain on three sides and the Salton Sea to the east. Its 650,000 acres contain spectacular desert vistas, a variety of plant and animal life, and numerous archaeological, cultural, and historic sites.

Varying from stark dry desert mountains and canyons to lush palm-tree-lined oases, the park contains more than 100 miles of trails for hikers, backpackers, and mountain bikers, 500 miles of dirt roads to be explored by bicycle or motor vehicle, and steep paved roads for road cyclists who love a challenge.

Dead Horse Point State Park, Utah

Dead Horse Point State Park features a dramatic overlook of the Colorado River and Canyonlands National Park.

Dead Horse Point State Park features a dramatic overlook of the Colorado River and Canyonlands National Park. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The parking lot at Dead Horse Point State Park, 30 miles from Moab, is a few steps from one of the most dramatic vistas in the desert Southwest—looking down 1,000 feet to the top of Dead Horse Mesa, which itself towers a thousand feet above the Colorado River doing a 180-degree turn and wrapping around its sandstone base.

From the overlook, canyon erosion may be viewed on a grand scale. This erosion process has taken approximately 150 million years. Much of it is caused by the river slicing down into the earth’s crust as land is forced upward. These powerful forces are still sculpting the fantastic shapes of the precipitous bluffs and towering spires.

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, Texas

Enchanted Rock rises 425 feet above ground, 1825 feet above sea level, and covers 640 acres.

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area is one of the most popular sites in Texas for several reasons—the scenery is unusual, the summit is easily reached and has fine views over the countryside, different habitats harbor varied wildflowers, cacti and other plants, and there are good hiking trails and rock climbing routes.

There are two main trails. The steep and heavily traveled Summit Trail leads directly to the summit of the main rock, while the Loop Trail makes a four-mile trek around the entire complex of domes.

Visitors to Enchanted Rock enjoy numerous activities, including hiking, backpacking, technical and rock climbing, primitive camping, picnicking, birding, geological study, stargazing and nature study.

Visitors to Enchanted Rock enjoy numerous activities, including hiking, backpacking, technical and rock climbing, primitive camping, picnicking, birding, geological study, stargazing and nature study. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Palo Duro State Park, Texas

At 120 miles long, 20 miles wide in some places, and 800 feet deep, Palo Duro Canyon is the second-largest canyon in the country, behind the Grand Canyon. The Technicolor walls here make for high-desert scenery more commonly seen in southern Utah.

You can explore the 20,000-acre state park by hiking or horseback-riding, or even take a leisurely drive across the canyon floor. There’s tent, equestrian, RV camping, and three stone cabins built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps (since modernized), set on the rim with sweeping view of the canyon below.

From the end of May until mid-August, more than 60 actors, singers, and dancers take the stage at the park’s amphitheatre to perform Texas, a rousing musical that depicts the settling of the Texas Panhandle.

Hunting Island State Park, South Carolina

Hunting Island State Park: South Carolina Paradise © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Hunting Island State Park: South Carolina Paradise © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Approximately 3 miles long and 1 mile wide, Hunting Island State Park encompasses 5,000 acres of pristine sandy beach, maritime forest, the only publicly accessible lighthouse in the state, and saltwater marsh. It is classified as a true semitropical island. Hunting Island, the most popular state park in South Carolina, attracts more than a million visitors annually and was recently named a top 10 beach Trip Advisor.

Hunting Island possesses the best developed slash pine-palmetto forest in the state and is one of the best sites to observe South Carolina’s state tree, the Cabbage Palmetto, in its native habitat.

Hunting Island State Park is only 29 miles off Interstate 95, the main corridor between Florida and the Northeast, approximately halfway between Savannah and Charleston.

Worth Pondering…

Remember that happiness is a way of travel, not a destination.

—Roy Goodman

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EverGreen Introduces Bay Hill Fifth Wheel Upgrades For 2015

The affordable, luxury Bay Hill fifth wheel by EverGreen Recreational Vehicles is completely upgraded for 2015.

EverGreen Introduces Bay Hill Fifth Wheel Upgrades For 2015

EverGreen Introduces Bay Hill Fifth Wheel Upgrades For 2015

Known for its high-end style and mid-range consumer price point, the Bay Hill’s new features take it to another level. With eight models to choose from, including the all new 375RE, an updated front cap and additional windows the Bay Hill future looks bright, according to a company news release.

New Floor Plans

The latest Bay Hill floor plan features an expansive rear entertaining space equipped with all the amenities for large gatherings. The focal point is the large entertainment center with a power lift TV console and fireplace. Guests have plenty of room to lounge with two opposing slides that each holds a hide-a-bed sofa. Theatre seating separates the living room from the kitchen and dining area.

Two kitchen slides and an island layout create an open kitchen concept. The curbside slide houses a pantry with drawers and etched glass door, 30-inch over-the-range microwave, range, and standard 12-cubic foot refrigerator. A freestanding dining table to seat four is in the door-side slide.

Storage abounds in the front bedroom. A large wardrobe, 60-inch dresser and second wardrobe with washer/dryer prep allow for all the essentials.

EverGreen Introduces Bay Hill Fifth Wheel Upgrades For 2015

EverGreen Introduces Bay Hill Fifth Wheel Upgrades For 2015

A standard queen bed or king bed option still has plenty of room to walk around and move.

Two Tone Exterior Front Cap

The Bay Hill’s fiberglass front cap received an update for 2015. A striking two-tone front cap displays the Bay Hill logo and insignia prominently centered on the light color cap framed along the sides by the second color. The signature brown and cream combination is standard and the two-tone gray scheme is also available. Standard LED lights remain on the cap.

More Windows

Two Bay Hill models got a fresh look with more windows. The 369RL features an enormous rear window that lets in an abundance of natural light.

In the 340RK a second window was added next to the bronze range hood in the kitchen.

The large interiors seem even larger with the newest modification. Another welcome addition are the additional windows in the bedroom slides allowing more natural light.

EverGreen Introduces Bay Hill Fifth Wheel Upgrades For 2015

EverGreen Introduces Bay Hill Fifth Wheel Upgrades For 2015

Details

EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC

EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC was founded in December of 2008 with the premise that the recreational vehicle industry needed a new generation of innovative, sustainable, eco-friendly, green travel trailers and fifth wheels built like none before.

The vision of EverGreen is to use sustainable eco-friendly, recyclable, composite materials to replace wood and produce higher quality, longer-lasting products that are fully equipped, yet lightweight.

EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC is the first RV manufacturer to achieve the TRA Certified Green Emerald Rating for its eco-friendly Ever-Lite travel trailers and fifth wheels.

EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC currently offers six lines of travel trailers (Ever-Lite, Sun Valley, i-Go, Ascend, Element, and Amped), four lines of fifth wheel trailers (Bay Hill, Tesla, Lifestyle, and Alfa Gold), and two lines of toy haulers (Amped and Tesla).

Of the top 15 towable RV manufacturers, EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC, along with its Lifestyle Luxury RV fifth-wheel division, was the fastest growing company in the industry for both registered retail sales and total increase in market share for the year 2013.

Today, with the addition of the Skyline RV brand, EverGreen is the fourth largest recreational vehicle manufacturer in North America.

Address: 10758 County Road 2, Middlebury, IN 46540

Phone: (574) 825-4298

Website: www.goevergreenrv.com

Worth Pondering…

Remember that happiness is a way of travel, not a destination.

—Roy Goodman

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Report: More Camp Sites With Full Hookups Required

A recent review and analysis of Ohio State Parks recommends the creation of more camp sites with full hookups for recreational vehicles and the closing of 29 less profitable cabins.

Mohican State Park  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Mohican State Park © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The new performance audit by state Auditor Dave Yost indicates that the changes could generate more than $3.3 million in average annual returns and $3.8 million in one-time cost avoidance. This state park audit was one of a series conducted at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

“Smarter planning and capital investment works just as well in the woods as it does in the city,” Yost said in a statement.

“Ohio has an opportunity to enhance the outdoor experience in our beautiful state parks for many years to come.”

Department of Natural Resources Director Jim Zehringer said, “We at ODNR appreciate the growing desire among Ohioans to have the opportunity to enjoy the state’s amazing open spaces and we are eager to provide them with the facilities that will enhance their experience while they are there.”

Ohio State Parks has four categories of overnight accommodations: campgrounds, cabins, “getaways”, and lodges. Campgrounds provide paved slabs for RVs; picnic areas; options for electric, water, and sewer hookups; and a variety of shared site amenities such as restrooms, shower houses, and retail convenience stores.

Holmes County  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Holmes County © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Most cabins are approximately 900 square feet with two bedrooms, a living room, and kitchen area. Cabins are generally heated and air conditioned and are equipped with furniture, linens, and cookware.

Getaways encompass a variety of structures from teepees to primitive cabins, and their inventory comprises a small percentage of the overall accommodation inventory at any given park.

Lodges are hotel operations which are managed by third-party operators.

Campgrounds and cabins make up the majority of Parks’ self-managed inventory as well as the self-generated revenue; 98.6 percent and 96.2 percent, respectively.

Concerns have been raised regarding an insufficient number of full hook-up campsites and an aged cabin inventory that is no longer sufficiently able to attract customers and meet their needs in an efficient and effective manner.

Ohio State Parks supplies 207 full hook-up campsites specifically targeted toward high-end RVs—the fastest growing segment within RV camping nationally—a relatively small number in comparison to ownership levels.

Despite strong demand and relatively high operating performance, only 12 park locations offer full hook-up sites, with a median of a dozen at each of those parks. By comparison electric sites are more widespread, with 48 park locations offering a median inventory of 98 sites. As such, Parks may have an opportunity to meet customer demand for full hook-up sites by increasing not only the total number of full hook-up sites, but also the park locations offering them.

Ohio State Capitol, Colunbus  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Ohio State Capitol, Colunbus © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Ohio State Parks plans to install new full hook-up campsites as upgrades to its existing stock of electric campsites. By using existing electrical service and concrete pads wherever possible, costs and construction complexity can be reduced.

Campgrounds sites with full hook-ups are occupied a median of 40 percent of the time. Camp sites with electricity are occupied about 18 percent, and non-electric sites less than 6 percent. The park agency already has earmarked $15 million for cabin improvements—each will cost an estimated $132,100 to renovation—and $10 million for campgrounds improvements from capital money approved last year. A portion of these funds will be used for the addition of full hook-up sites and the renovation of cabins at several locations.

The full report is here.

Details

Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR)

Website: www.ohiodnr.gov

Historic Marietta  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Historic Marietta © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Ohio State Parks

The Division of Parks was created as a division of ODNR in 1949 with the statutory obligation to create, supervise, operate, and maintain a system of state parks and to promote their use by the public. Through land acquisition and transfer, the park system has grown from the original 30 parks to 74 state parks in 59 counties with over 174,000 acres of land and water resources.

Facilities include eight resort lodges, two dining lodges, six golf courses, more than 9,000 campsites in 56 campgrounds, 518 cottages, 36 visitor/nature centers, 80 swimming beaches and 18 swimming pools, 188 boat ramps and 7,583 boat docks, 463 picnic areas, and 1,167 miles of trails.

Website: www.parks.ohiodnr.gov

Worth Pondering…

I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.

—John Burroughs

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Fastway Trailer Products Introduce Flash E Series Ball Mount

Provo, Utah-based Fastway Trailer Products has announced the production and launch of the E series ball mount, an addition to the Flash polished aluminum ball mount line.

Fastway Trailer Products Introduce Flash E Series Ball Mount

Fastway Trailer Products Introduce Flash E Series Ball Mount

With stunning good looks and quick, easy adjustments, the Fastway Flash E series is the best looking pin-style ball mount you can buy, according to a company news release.
Each Flash ball mount is precision-machined, making it stronger and longer lasting than other aluminum ball mounts. If you are looking for a strong, reliable and attractive pin-style ball mount, look no further.

The Fastway Flash E series ball mount is superior in strength and craftsmanship, and its hand polished aluminum outshines the competition with a gorgeous, mirror finish.

“The Fastway Flash E series is a great choice for towing multiple trailers. With adjustable heights and dual hitch balls, trailer change-overs are a snap,” says Rich Elliott, VP of Sales and Marketing for Fastway.

“We have received a great response from dealers and distributors, and are excited to bring this product to market.”

Each E series ball mount is made from aircraft-grade aluminum, providing corrosion resistance and outstanding performance. It offers a 1,000-pound max tongue weight and 10,000-pound max trailer weight.

“Adding the E series to the Flash line is really exciting,” said Matt Best, Product Manager.

“Our Flash line is a favorite among retailers, and this new series will provide another excellent option for customers looking for a high-end aluminum ball mount.”

Precision machined for strength and durability Aircraft-grade aluminum for corrosion resistance and outstanding performance Super strength alloy, for years of safe towing 1,000 pounds max tongue weight.

Limited One Year Warranty

The Fastway Flash E series ball mount offers 4 options and ranges in price from $195.95–$209.95.

Fastway Trailer Products Introduce Flash E Series Ball Mount

Fastway Trailer Products Introduce Flash E Series Ball Mount

To celebrate the product launch, Fastway is giving away one free Flash E series ball mount to a lucky winner via Facebook. Entries will be accepted until March 29, 2015. To enter the contest, visit the Fastway Facebook page (SEE link below).

Details

Fastway Trailer Products – Progress Mfg. Inc.

The Fastway line of products is for trailer owners that want to get on with their fun or work instead of wasting their time on tedious and annoying trailer tasks.

Equal-i-zer Hitch is a division of Progress Manufacturing, a Utah company that specializes in the production and manufacturing of sway control hitches, adjustable ball mounts and trailer hitch accessories.

Progress Mfg. Inc., formerly Lindon Hitch, Inc., took on its name in 2004 when facilities were moved from Lindon, Utah to Provo, Utah.

The new name was chosen to depict how the company does business and not where.

The company continually strives to move forward and be innovative in all their activities. Externally they work with their customers to achieve mutual success.

Internally they constantly seek opportunities to better themselves and the company as a whole.

Their greatest success as a company is to hear how their products positively affect the way people vacation and spend time with their families.

Mailing Address: 533 S. 500 W., Provo, UT 84601

Phone: (801) 377-9599 or (800) 478-5578 (toll free)

Website: www.fastwaytrailer.com

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com 

Worth Pondering…

I see travel as the one of the most important ways of expanding human beings’ understanding of each other. Through travel we discover humility, love, friendship, passion and ourselves.
—Kirsten Cargill

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Walmart Parking Lot Abuse Leaves 1 Dead & Officer Shot

The Cottonwood, Arizona, Walmart parking lot was the scene of a weekend fight that left one suspect dead and an officer shot, according to information provided by Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) officials and several witnesses.

(Photo courtesy Arizona Department of Public Safety)

(Photo courtesy Arizona Department of Public Safety)

Cottonwood Police Department received a call about a Walmart employee who had been assaulted by one of the suspects just before midnight.

Eight officers were also assaulted in the Walmart parking lot Saturday night (March 21, 2015) in a fight that left one suspect dead, another wounded, and seven in custody, according to officials.

The fight happened after the Cottonwood Police Department received a call at 11:52 p.m. from the Cottonwood Walmart reporting that a suspect shoved a female employee in a store bathroom.

When officers arrived, the suspects were in the parking lot and attacked the officers.

Several years ago SmartCentres, which owns the Kamloops, British Columbia shopping centre, installed large new signs on the lot reminding customers there is no overnight parking for RVs or trucks. (Credit: bcnews.ca)

Several years ago SmartCentres, which owns the Kamloops, British Columbia shopping centre, installed large new signs on the lot reminding customers there is no overnight parking for RVs or trucks. (Credit: bcnews.ca)

One suspect was shot and killed during the fight, another was shot in the abdomen, and a total of seven others were taken into custody, DPS said.

The suspects are from the same family, according to DPS spokesman Bart Graves. The seven in custody, five adult males, a woman, and a female juvenile, refused to provide their names, Graves said.

The suspects were booked as John and Jane Does on suspicion of aggravated assault, attempted homicide, obstruction of justice, and a separate assault charge related to the Walmart loss-prevention officer, who suffered a broken arm, Graves said.

All suspects involved were members of the same family who were driving a Suburban SUV with Idaho license plates and had been camping for at least four days in the parking lot according to one report.

The man who was shot and killed in the incident had spent the last few days of his life playing a guitar at a side exit to the store, asking for money, a witness said.

One officer was shot in the leg and the other seven were left with cuts and bruises.

“We do believe that there was a struggle for an officer’s weapon, there is an ongoing investigation on that,” Graves said.

The officer that was shot in the leg is 31 years old and has been with Cottonwood police for 10 years, the release said. He was flown to Flagstaff Medical Center for surgery and is expected to make a full recovery.

DPS and local police cleared the scene just after noon Sunday. Dozens of cars circled around the area where the shooting occurred near the back end of the parking lot.

Store management met with Cottonwood Police yesterday (March 24, 2015), to figure out how to keep people from camping overnight at the store.

Details of the meeting are unavailable.

Unfortunately, some campers take advantage of Walmart’s generosity and call the parking lot home for days.

Staying in a Walmart parking lot. (Credit: mybirdie.ca)

Staying in a Walmart parking lot. (Credit: mybirdie.ca)

Overnight Parking Etiquette

Some of the most respected RV consumer clubs have joined together to support your right to park on private businesses’ parking lots overnight under the following code of conduct. The code pertains to establishments that permit “dry camping” on their lots. Dry camping means camping without the use of external hookups for electricity, water supply, or waste disposal.

Industry-Sanctioned Code of Conduct (RVers’ Good Neighbor Policy)

Stay one night only!

Obtain permission from a qualified individual.

Obey posted regulations.

No awnings, chairs, or barbecue grills outside your RV.

Do not use hydraulic jacks on soft surfaces (including asphalt).

Always leave an area cleaner than you found it.

Purchase gas, food, or supplies as a form of thank you, when feasible.

Be safe! Always be aware of your surroundings and leave if you feel unsafe.

If your plans include touring the area, staying for more than one night, or necessitate conduct not within the code, please relocate to a local campground. It’s the right thing to do!

Worth Pondering…

GOD IS GREAT, BEER IS GOOD, and PEOPLE ARE CRAZY!

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Campgrounds As Base Camps For Festivals & Special Events

Campgrounds and RV parks are great places to enjoy hiking, biking, boating, and other outdoor recreation activities during your leisure time.

Coachella Valley Preserve, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Coachella Valley Preserve, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

With RV and tent sites as well as a wide range of rental accommodations, campgrounds can also serve as base camps for those interested in attending festivals and weekend special events throughout the U.S and Canada. These special activities can ranges from rodeos to music festivals and cultural to culinary events.

Following is a sampling of the festivals and special events that take place during the coming weeks and months, along with listings of nearby attractions and campgrounds and RV parks, many of which also have rental accommodations.

All parks included have been personally visited with a minimum of one night of paid camping.

California: Indian Wells Arts Festival, Indian Wells, April 3-5, 2015

There’s something for everyone at the 13th annual Indian Wells Arts Festival. There’s sidewalk chalk drawing, children’s activities, wine tasting, live musical entertainment, and refreshments throughout the day.

Taking place on the grass garden plaza of the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, more than 200 award winning artists set up their displays to create a unique artisan village with thousands of hand-made, one-of-a-kind painting, drawings, ceramics, glass, photography, sculpture, jewelry, apparel, and other wares.

Named a Top 100 Event in North America by the American Bus Association.

Nearby Attractions: Indian Canyons, Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, Joshua Tree National Park, Coachella Nature Preserve

Recommended RV Park: Indian Waters RV Resort & Cottages, Indio, California

Sabino Canyon, Tucson, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Sabino Canyon, Tucson, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Arizona: 33rd Annual Tucson International Mariachi Festival, Tucson, April 8-11, 2015

The Tucson International Mariachi Festival is an award winning conference recognized as one of the largest cultural events in the United States. Since the conference’s inception, organizers have made education an integral component, with more than 1,000 participants from across the country.

The festival continues to foster mutual respect between Hispanics and non-Hispanics through the celebration of music, dance, culture, arts, family, and spirit. The weeklong conference provides three days of workshops giving participants the best the world has to offer from the music and dance of Mexico.

Named a Top 100 Event in North America by the American Bus Association.

Nearby Attractions: Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, Saguaro National Park, Sabino Canyon, Pima Space & Air Museum

Recommended RV Parks: Tucson/Lazydays KOA, Tucson, Arizona, and Catalina State Park, Oro Valley, Arizona

Heaven Hill Bourbon, Bardstown, Kentucky © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Heaven Hill Bourbon, Bardstown, Kentucky © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Kentucky: 60th Kentucky Derby Festival & 141st Kentucky Derby Louisville,  April 16-May 2, 2015

The Kentucky Derby Festival is a whirlwind of 70 events starting with Thunder Over Louisville, the opening ceremonies of the two-week festival. With an estimated average attendance of half a million people, it is the largest annual event in the region, the largest annual pyrotechnics display in North America, and one of the top five air shows in the country.

Other highlights include a half and full marathon and live bed racing. The event that started it all, the Pegasus Parade marches down Broadway the Thursday before the Derby.

Named a Top 100 Event in North America by the American Bus Association.

Nearby Attractions: Slugger Museum, Muhammad Ali Center, Kentucky Derby Museum, Kentucky Bourbon Trail

Recommended RV Park: Grandma’s RV Camping, Shepherdsville

Texas: Fiesta San Antonio, San Antonio, April 16-26, 2015

The Alamo, San Antonio, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The Alamo, San Antonio, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Fiesta San Antonio celebrates the Alamo City’s diverse history and culture with more than 100 events over 11 days. Fiesta includes parades, parties, coronations, fashion shows, athletic events, art exhibits, and much more. Fiesta is the party with a purpose because every official event is produced by a local nonprofit that uses the proceeds from its event to fund programs year-round in the community.

Named a Top 100 Event in North America by the American Bus Association.

Nearby Attractions: The Alamo, River Walk (Paseo del Rio), El Mercado, San Antonio Missions National Historic Park, Texas BBQ

Recommended RV Park: Braunig Lake RV Resort, San Antonio

Worth Pondering…

Our nature lies in movement; complete calm is death.

—Blaise Pascal

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Airstream Interstate Remains Top Selling Class B Motorhome

Jackson Center, Ohio-based Airstream announced the brand’s popular Interstate is the top selling Class B diesel motorhome in the U.S. for the third year in a row, according to Statistical Surveys Inc. Brand Market Share Report, which details total sales of diesel and gas class B models.

Airstream Interstate exterior

Airstream Interstate exterior

In 2014, Airstream Interstate unit sales increased 30.2 percent over 2013—nearly 8 percent higher than the overall B Van segment growth which was up 22.8 percent year over year. The Interstate now has 33.7 percent market share of the diesel class B segment.

“The momentum we have seen over the past three years is incredible,” said Airstream CEO and President Bob Wheeler, in a company news release.

“The collaboration between Mercedes-Benz and Airstream combines the best of two iconic and luxurious brands.”

The Airstream Interstate motorhome continues the tradition of extraordinary design and handcrafted quality that has made Airstream the leader in luxury RVs for 83 years. It serves as a fuel-efficient, luxurious and safe way for travelers to explore the open road and includes nearly 50 “Best in Class” features, enhancements, and a renewed commitment to safety and refined luxury.

The Interstate has a starting MSRP of $149,031.

“Interstate continues to lead sales for all Mercedes-Benz Sprinter-based platform models in the class B diesel space,” said Justin Humphreys, VP of Sales for Airstream.

Airstream Interstate interior

Airstream Interstate interior

“In fact, when looking at the market scope data from Stat Surveys, our Interstate van sold 76 percent more than the top class B gas model. Considering our premium position, this success is extraordinary and is a testament to both industry-leading luxury features combined with the industry’s best dealers.”

Airstream had a record-setting 2014, making it the best-selling year in the company’s 83-year history, and the third year of record sales in a row. The demand for Airstream’s design-driven products led to the company’s largest backlog in more than 30 years and plant expansions for both its van and travel trailer production facilities.

The Airstream Interstate is available in three models: Interstate Lounge XLT (starting at $151,736), Interstate Grand Tour XLT (starting at $151,736), and Interstate Lounge (starting at $149,031)

A fourth touring coach from Airstream, the Autobahn starting at ($134,906), is a luxury van, perfect for corporate travelers who place a premium on productivity, or for family road trippers in search of comfort and relaxation.

Airstream Interstate exterior

Airstream Interstate exterior

Your Airstream dealer in Western Canada is Midtown RV in the heart of the beautiful Okanagan Valley in Penticton.

Details

Winnebago Industries, Inc

Forest City, Iowa-based Winnebago Industries, Inc., “The Most Recognized Name In Motor Homes”, is a leading U.S. manufacturer of recreation vehicles, which are used primarily in leisure travel and outdoor recreation activities.

The Company builds quality motorhomes, travel trailers, and fifth wheel products under the Winnebago, Itasca, Era, SunnyBrook, and Metro brand names.

Winnebago Industries has received the Quality Circle Award from the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association every year since the award’s inception in 1996.

Postal Address: P.O. Box 152, Forest City, IA 50436

Street Address: 605 West Crystal Lake Road, Forest City, IA 50436

Phone: (641) 585-3535

Winnebago Website: gowinnebago.com

Itasca Website: goitasca.com

goLife Website: www.winnebagolife.com

Worth Pondering…

Airstream Song

Sometimes I wish I lived in airstream homemade curtains
Lived just like a gypsy.
Break a heart, roll out of town
Cause gypsies never get tied down
—Lyrics by Miranda Lambert, Natalie Nicole Hemby, Natalie Hemby, Miranda Lambert; sung by Miranda Lamber

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The View Campground: New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley

It’s all about the mystical view.

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

That is, the view of Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, on the northern outskirts of the Navajo Nation.

Experience Monument Valley as you’ve never seen before. The View Campground offers some of the most spectacular views of Monument Valley.

Opened in December 2008, The View Hotel is a Navajo owned business located within the Navajo Nation and the Navajo Tribal Park at Monument Valley.

The View Hotel features accommodations that serve the needs of visitors from around the world while blending with the environment so as not to detract from the beauty of Monument Valley. The three floors provide 95 rooms, each one with a private eastern facing balcony with views unlike anywhere else in world. The top floor features StarView rooms with unforgettable views of the stars, the entirety of Monument Valley, and serves as a perfect venue for amateur night-time long exposure photography without leaving the comfort of your room.

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley

Other amenities include Wi-Fi internet access in the lobby, conference room, a fitness center with sunset views, flatscreen televisions. Also included are in-room coffee makers with organic coffee and tea, a micro-frig, and microwave.

Unique to The View is the authentic Native American décor with a locally woven Navajo Rug, traditional Navajo dye chart, and other Native American inspired decorations.

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley

A multi-dimensional campground, called The View Campground now offers a new way to enjoy Monument Valley. You can choose from RV sites, wilderness camp sites, or cabins. Each offers their own unique view of Monument Valley.

The cabins at the campground are called “The Cabins at The View.” Located just north of the hotel, the campground has 29 cabins that exemplify a cultural retreat and vintage peaceful pleasure.

The private, fully-furnished valley rim cabins offer a unique way to experience Monument Valley. Each cabin features a private porch that overlooks the valley and is decorated in an old west decor. Bedrooms are equipped with queen sized beds and an additional sleeper sofa can accommodate up to six guests. Each cabin also has a full restroom and shower plus refrigerator and microwave.

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley

The View Campground also includes 30 RV spots and 30 wilderness campsites which attracts outdoor enthusiasts who want to capture the essence of rustic living and a dust of authentic Navajo history.

The RV sites feature the best sunset views of Monument Valley. All RV sites are dry camping with no hookups. A convenience store is located in the registration office and offers camping supplies, food, drinks, and ice.

The wilderness camp sites offer one of the best views from a campsite anywhere in the world. Located on the cliff-side of the park, the view is breathtaking. A full restroom and shower facility is available to all campers.

“The view captivates what we want visitors to see and experience,” said Armanda, Navajo/Dine.

In traditional Navajo culture, touching Mother Earth is a form of healing and medicine, so it was important to design the rooms with a ground level ambiance and give visitors a down-to-earth experience.

The Navajo-owned company hired up to 20 people during the peak of the tourism season in the summer. The campground was completed in June 2014; however, there are additional plans for improvement.

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

New Way To Enjoy Monument Valley © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The View Campground…where the stay is as important as the view. Is the perfect retreat to hear silent whispers of Navajo culture.

Details

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park

Monument Valley boasts sandstone masterpieces that tower at heights of 400 to 1,000 feet, framed by scenic clouds, casting shadows that graciously roam the desert floor. The angle of the sun accents these graceful formations, providing scenery that is simply spellbinding.

The landscape overwhelms, not just by its beauty but also by its size. The fragile pinnacles of rock are surrounded by miles of mesas and buttes, shrubs, trees, and windblown sand, all comprising the magnificent colors of the valley. All of this harmoniously combines to make Monument Valley a truly wondrous experience.

Address: PO Box 360289, Monument Valley, UT 84536

Phone: (435)727-5874/5870 or (435)727-5875

Website: www.monumentvalleyview.com

Worth Pondering…

…and may you always walk in wonder.

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5 RVs You Likely Can’t Afford

In the world of luxury travel, private jets and super-yachts are the most popular options. But for those who want to stay on the road, the best choice is a mobile home. These opulent and massive homes on wheels often take their interior cues from luxury yachts, with leather upholstery, fine wood cabinetry, and other high-end amenities.

Millennium Luxury Coach

Millennium Luxury Coach

Millennium Luxury Coach

You’ll be blown away by the efficiency and innovation of a Millennium Luxury Coach.

The opulent features in the 2015 Millennium line—including a sink top glass bowl in the bathroom, quartz countertops, and Swarovski crystal accent fixtures—put this traveling home in a category of its own. The 45-foot, quad-slide 2015 Millennium H3-45 Prevost conversion is powered by a Volvo D-13 diesel engine.

Millennium is a family owned company with over 20 years history in the marine, aviation, and luxury coach building industry. Superior performance, luxurious style, state of the art technology, and excellent customer service sets them apart.

eleMMent Palazzo

eleMMent Palazzo

eleMMent Palazzo

Nowadays, you can’t help but pay a lot for a feature-laden motorhome. However, the expensive madness goes over the top with an eleMMent Palazzo that sold  for a staggering $3.1 million in sunny Dubai. This opulent slightly bizarre luxury RV is made by Marchi Mobile, an Austrian company.

The Palazzo features two floors of entertainment and extravagance, with a giant master suite, and multiple bars. The party piece of the eleMMent Palazzo is the Sky Lounge, a rooftop terrace that can be deployed or retracted at the simple press of a button.

A step up from the Palazzo is the eleMMent Viva–V.I.P. shuttle. The Viva starts where the Palazzo leaves off but features a chauffeur booth and six high-end lounge and massage chairs that recline for sleeping.

KiraVan

KiraVan

KiraVan

The KiraVan, a giant custom built off road recreational vehicle, includes an office, kitchen, and bedrooms as well as its own motorbike and drone.

Capable of traveling most anywhere, the KiraVan was designed by Californian inventor Bran Ferren for his four-year-old daughter Kira, who has her own pop tent on top of the truck.

Capable of traversing nearly any terrain, from mud-swamped roads to rock-covered trails to small bodies of water, the six-wheeled “terrestrial spaceship” will be able to travel up to 2,000 miles without resupply and navigate slopes as steep as 45 degrees thanks to a special suspension system—an incline that is difficult to climb.

The cockpit also has a special vibration reducing chair, as well as control for drones that can fly ahead to check traffic.

Volkner Mobil Performance Bus

Volkner Mobil Performance Bus

Volkner Mobil Performance Bus

Fully customizable and 40 feet long, Volkner Mobil Performance Bus features a wall that slides outward to create extra space, along with a state of the art entertainment system and a fully equipped kitchen. An incredibly luxurious “palace on wheels,” its sumptuous interior features leather seats, stone tiles in the kitchen and the bathroom, wide-screen TV, and Bose home entertainment system.

Most impressive of all is the built-in garage under the vehicle. For the owner who wants to travel in comfort without leaving behind the Ferrari, this is the way to go. Volkner has also created a motorized garage into its high end Performance models capable of swallowing whole Porsche 911s, Jaguar XK8 Cabriolets, BMW 6 Series Cabriolets, Maserati Quattroportes, and a Mercedes Sports.

Based on how it is equipped, a Volkner Mobil Bus can cost between $1.2 and $2 million.

Vin Diesel

Vin Diesel's RV

Vin Diesel’s customized and insanely over the top fifth wheel trailer

It could be assumed that action star Vin Diesel of The Fast and the Furious fame has a love affair with wheels. It then only makes sense that he has a home on wheels as well. While it isn’t fast or furious, Vin Diesel’s customized and insanely over the top fifth wheel trailer is a mobile luxury getaway.

Designed by Anderson Mobile Estates, one of Hollywood’s top mobile trailer companies, the two-story, 1100 square foot mansion-on-wheels requires a the power of a semi to keep it mobile. Once on location, the roof pops up and walls slide out to make way for additional floor space.  Top of the line media equipment, granite kitchen counter tops, a private office, and a kids play area are just some of the luxurious comforts of home that Vin Diesel can take on the road with him.

Worth Pondering…

Stop wishing; start planning: A goal without a plan is just a wish.

—Larry Elder

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Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

Rolling Homes recently introduced the new entry-level campervan.

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

All the practicality of a VW camper conversion but at a fraction of the cost is the promise of the new Shackleton, entry-level VW camper conversion.

The Shackleton provides the ideal starting point for anyone looking for their first new motorhome.

“This entry-level camper is built using the same components as the more expensive models,” according to a company statement.

“This has the same level of craftsmanship and attention to detail, but with a softer price tag.”

Based on a VW T5 Transporter, the Shackleton features a front elevating, German SCA deluxe roof, color coded to match the vehicle paintwork, plus handmade, lightweight, real wood veneered board with solid oak edges, extensive cupboards and wardrobes, and solid surface kitchen worktops.

Included is a deluxe bed which gives extra sleeping room for two adults.

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

A 110 amp/hr marine battery powers the 12v system that runs the compressor fridge, LED lighting, and water pump and is charged when the engine is running or connected to the mains via a discrete 240v hook up.

The layout is a classic side kitchen with the rear seats forming the double bed.

The kitchen offers 50-litre Waeco compressor fridge/freezer, Smev twin-burner hob with integrated sink, water tank, and pump.

At the front a double-passenger seat swivels round to face into the cabin.

All the internal sides are fully insulated with sheep wool and the carpet features a soft, dark-grey trim.

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

Overall length of the vehicle is 4.89m (16 feet) and the height with the roof extended comes to 3.04m (10 feet).

The basic OTR price is £36,995 ($54,547) but there are a number of extra options that can be specified.

These options include a long wheelbase version, which is £1,200 ($1,770) extra, reversing sensors, awning rails, and awning itself, 75w solar panel, under seat safe, VW bike rack, swiveling driver’s seat and an electric blow heater.

If you want to try out a Rolling Homes campervan before you commit to buying then try hiring one for a short break. If you decide to buy after your rental then Rolling Homes will refund half the hire cost.

Alternatively, just rent one for weekends or an entire week with either the Columbus model with one twin bed and a twin in the roof, or the Livingstone model with a rear kitchen and two single beds and a twin in the roof.

Details

Rolling Homes

Rolling Homes is a small family-run business based in Shropshire.

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

Rolling Homes Introduces New Entry-Level Campervan

Rolling Homes is committed to offering exclusive and luxurious handcrafted and lightweight bespoke wood units at a competitive price. The company does not use imitation wood and plastics. They only use the highest quality lightweight wood, materials, fittings, and appliances to ensure that your camper will outlast the most enduring camping adventure. Quality is paramount at Rolling Homes.

Since what each customer wants varies from camper to camper, they offer lots of choice that is tailored to your requirements.

Address: Cartmel Drive, Shrewsbury SY1 3TB

Phone: 01743 443877

Website: www.rolling-homes.co.uk

Worth Pondering…

May all your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view……where something strange and more beautiful and more full of wonder than your deepest dreams waits for you.

—Edward Abbey

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