RV/MH Museum Introduces Historic Shasta Exhibit

Elkhart, Indiana-based RV/MH Hall of Fame and Museum recently introduced its newest exhibit featuring a retrospective on the evolution of the iconic Shasta brand of travel trailers.

1954 Shasta display in the RV/MH Hall of Fame and Museum, Elkhart, Indiana © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
1954 Shasta display in the RV/MH Hall of Fame and Museum, Elkhart, Indiana © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The display includes a 1954 Shasta that’s been in the museum’s inventory for years and a 2015 reissue of a 1961 Shasta Airflyte 16sc, courtesy of Mick Ferkey, owner of Greeneway RV, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, and a member of the RV/MH Hall of Fame board of directors.

While the reissue of a 1961 Shasta Airflyte 16sc has the look and style of the 1960s model, it is fully equipped with modern features and appliances, including a full bath, according to an RV/MH Hall of Fame press release.

“Shasta has a rich heritage and is the industry’s longest producer of RVs. The brand has been in continuous product since its founding in 1941,” said Darryl Searer, president, RV/MH Hall of Fame.

“When Californian Robert Gray built the first Shasta ‘house trailer’ to be used as mobile military housing, he had no idea his homes on wheels would play a major role in establishing a billion-dollar industry—or that the little trailers would spark wanderlust in Americans that would carry them across the miles and into the next century.”

The evolution of the Shasta display in the museum actually began when Mark Lucas, president/general manager, Shasta RV, a division of Forest River, noticed a yellow and white 1961 Shasta for sale sitting in a front yard, just up the road from his office in Middlebury, Indiana.

1954 Shasta (left) and 2015 Reissue of a 1961 Shasta Airflyte 16sc (right)
1954 Shasta (left) and 2015 Reissue of a 1961 Shasta Airflyte 16sc (right)

“I’ve always been a car guy. I’ve restored and customized a bunch of older cars. My wife has a 1960 Cadillac convertible with a white interior,” said Lucas.

“So when I ran across that 1961 Shasta I envisioned towing the restored 1961 Shasta behind my wife’s car. I bought it and brought it to the factory.”

As it turns out, a restoration was not as easy as Lucas first thought.

“We started to pull it apart and discovered it had aluminum water tank and aluminum water line, so I said, ‘Pull it out and we’ll replace it’,” Lucas continued.

“They said, ‘It’s got that old style wiring,’ so I said, ‘Pull that out and replace it.’

Lucas’ crew kept pulling it apart until they ended up with a bare frame. He laughed and added, “That wasn’t part of the plan—my wife’s going to be pretty mad. I got with our engineer Mark Dunithan, and we started researching parts and found that about 80 percent of what we needed was readily available.”

Dunithan suggested to Lucas that they just build a brand new one for him.

But rather than just building one, they came up with the idea of building 1,941 in honor of Shasta’s first year.

Lucas said, “There were some things that were hard to find. We had to get a casting made for the Shasta emblem on the front, and we replicated the door handles. Vendors really stepped up for us. For example, Hehr International, an RV window manufacturer, remade those awning style windows for us.”

Cadillac_ShastaLucas unveiled the 2015 reissue of a 1961 Shasta Airflyte on the opening day of 2014 RV Open House, and by noon the next day, the complete product run was completely sold out.

It was during the RV Open House that board member Mick Ferkey noticed the product and fell in love with it. Ferkey knew the museum already owned 1954 Shasta and thought a display of the 1954 Shasta alongside the reissue of the 1961 could be an exciting and educational exhibit for museum visitors.

The problem was that Shasta limited sales of the new model only to its own dealers, and Ferkey was not a Shasta dealer.

Ferkey talked to Lucas about his idea and ended up convincing him selling him one for display in the museum.

“I think it’s fantastic,” Lucas said.

“One thing that I’m honored to do is to direct such an iconic brand such as Shasta. So to have our reissue of the 1961 Shasta Airflyte sit beside a 1954 Shasta at the RV/MH Hall of Fame and Museum is exciting, and it’s also humbling.”

Museum visitors will find the new exhibit in the Go RVing Hall and will be able to compare the advances in enhancements to the RV lifestyle between these two historic travel trailers.

2014 limited edition Shasta Airflyte in production.
2014 limited edition Shasta Airflyte in production.

Worth Pondering…

You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.

—Les Brown

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Dynasty Days Offers $25,000 rebates on Monaco Dynasty Diesel Pushers

For a limited time, you can feel the heat of Monaco’s summer savings event. Experience the power of a Monaco Dynasty and receive an added reward, too.

Monaco dynasty_rebate2Don’t miss this summer’s biggest chance to receive a $25,000 retail savings on the hottest 2015 Monaco Dynasty motorhomes.

Decatur, Indiana-based Monaco announced its newest retail summer savings event, Dynasty Days.

Purchases made on all eligible, remaining in-stock 2015 Monaco Dynasty motorhomes will be qualified to receive a $25,000 retail savings through July 31.

A limited number of Monaco Dynasty motorhomes are available.

“Purchasing a motorhome is a rewarding experience for all owners,” said Mike Snell, president of Monaco Coach, in a news release.

“What better way to begin the 2015 travel season than to start with a $25,000 rebate? It’s a rewarding and enticing incentive that will only make the purchasing experience an even more positive one.”

To be eligible, a customer must purchase a new, unused, and in-stock 2015 Monaco Dynasty during the limited-time, promotional period, and complete a retail redemption form located on Monaco’s website (SEE link below)

All sales must be contracted and delivered no later than July 31 to qualify.

2015 Monaco Dynasty interior
2015 Monaco Dynasty interior

2015 Monaco Dynasty 45 specifications and features include:

  • Exterior Length: 45 feet
  • Engine: 600HP ISX
  • Slide Outs: 4
  • Heating System: AquaHot 450D
  • Generator: Cummins Onan 10.0kw Quiet Diesel
  • Inverter/Charger: 2800w Pure Sine Wave
  • House Batteries: 8 Maintenance-Free Absorbed Glass Mat 6-Volt
  • GPS: Integrated Rand McNally RV
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System: Pressure Pro-Active
  • TV: Mid-Coach Sony 50-inch LED w/Sound Bar and Subwoofer
  • Shades/Blinds: Power Roller Shades and Privacy Blinds
2015 Monaco Dynasty 45 floor plan
2015 Monaco Dynasty 45 floor plan

Details

Allied Recreation Group (ARG)

The only recreational vehicle manufacturing company with the stability, singular focus, unmatched integrity, and revolutionary vision to be the steward of the most trusted, iconic American RV brands, proudly leading them into the next generation.

Allied Recreation Group is a collection of some of the world’s most recognized and admired RV brands. Each brand—American Coach, Fleetwood, Holiday Rambler, and Monaco—remains distinct, while together the group is a celebration of the rich heritage and future promise of the greatest manufacturers in the RV industry.

Address: 1031 US 224 East, Decatur, Indiana 46733

Phone: (800) 854-1344 (toll free)

Website: www.alliedrecreationgroup.com

Monaco Coach

15_Dynasty-Rebate-Shield
15_Dynasty-Rebate-Shield

Between May 15, 2015 and July 31, 2015, you can enjoy some hot summer savings with our “Dynasty Days of Summer” retail savings event and receive a $25,000 savings on all eligible in-stock 2015 Monaco Dynasty purchases. It’s a Monaco factory rebate that you won’t want to miss.

Mailing Address: PO Box 31, Decatur, IN 46733

Phone: (260) 728-2121

Websites: www.monacocoach.com

Monaco Dynasty Rebate: www.monacocoach.com/rebate/

Worth Pondering…

When you put down the good things you ought to have done and leave out the bad things you did do—well, that’s memories.

—Will Rogers

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Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun

Jayco’s line of Jay Flight travel trailers—including the Jay Flight, Jay Flight Bungalow, and the Jay Flight SLX— has spent ten consecutive years as the top-selling recreation vehicle worldwide.

Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun
Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun

The Jay Flight brands have earned success because of a commitment to a quality product enjoyable by all since the product launch in 2001, according to a company news release.

Many of the employees have worked with the Jay Flight line since this time.

Through the years, over 160,000 families have chosen the Jay Flight family of travel trailers.

Amy Duthie, senior director of product development of Jay Flight Travel Trailers, has worked closely with the Jay Flight family.

“It’s exciting to see how Jay Flight has transformed over the years and to be a part of it.” Duthie said.

Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun
Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun

“We have strived to remain true to the original goal of bringing the best in livability, features, and value to the retail owner.”

“Derald Bontrager, president and CEO, has always said ‘We build campers one at a time for one family at a time,’” added Duthie.

“This is what we have always done, and will continue to do every day. It is this principle, along with our great dealer partners, which has helped Jay Flight reach and remain at the top of the RV industry for 10 years.”

Key updates and new features for model year 2016 Jay Flights include:

  • All-new exteriors
  • Interior décor upgrades
  • Upgraded technology features
  • Power awnings (SLX models)
  • Digital remote control for slide rooms, awnings, and lighting (available in Jay Flight).
Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun
Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun

The 2016 models will be available in mid-May.

In honor of this achievement, Jayco has launched a website commending the Jay Flight (SEE link below)

Details

Jayco Inc.

Jayco Inc. is the world’s largest privately held manufacturer of recreation vehicles.

Jayco began as a family business and is a family business today.

The company manufactures and markets RVs under the Jay Series, Select, Baja, Jay Feather, White Hawk, Jay Flight, Jay Smart, Skylark, Eagle, Pinnacle, Seismic, Octane ZX, Recon ZX, Greyhawk, Melbourne, Seneca, Embark, and Precept brand names.

Factory tours are conducted Monday through Thursday at 12 noon. Tours of the motorized facilities are offered by appointment only.

Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun
Jayco Jay Flight Celebrates Decade of Family Fun

Address: 903 S. Main, Middlebury, Indiana 46540

Phone: (800) RV-JAYCO (toll free)

Jayco Website: www.jayco.com

Jay Flight Website: www.jayco.com/about/jay-flight

Worth Pondering…

I dream of southern skies.

Cajun cookin’.

Tee offs in Tijuana.

Juleps in Jacksonville.

My reality is a daily commute that begins each day at six a.m.

Road rage.

Traffic tie-ups.

Cranky commuters.

The pathos of Dilbert’s world.

—Lisa Paradis

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EverGreen RV Introduces New Ever-Lite Travel Trailer Floor Plan

Middlebury, Indiana-based EverGreen Recreational Vehicles’ flagship Ever-Lite travel trailer, increases floor plan choices with the newest 292FLBS.

EverGreen RV Introduces New Ever-Lite Travel Trailer Floor Plan
EverGreen RV Introduces New Ever-Lite Travel Trailer Floor Plan

As with all Ever-Lite models the 292FLBS is built with ComposiTek construction. The Ever-Lite brand remains the only composite travel trailer on the market today.

The ComposiTek construction isn’t the only feature that sets the 292FLBS apart from other travel trailers. There are plenty of standard amenities throughout and opportunities to customize that make the Ever-Lite brand a popular choice among savvy campers in search of a coach that will last a lifetime.

An entry door at the front of the trailer opens into the large living area. The 90-inch horseshoe lounge with freestanding table sits in the 42-inch deep slide opposite the entrance. An optional sofa with two end tables is available in place of the lounge. At the front of the living area is another sofa with valuable overhead storage above. This sofa can also be replaced with two optional swivel rockers. Natural light fills the room from the skylight above making the space feel even larger.

A spacious kitchen full of cabinets and a huge pantry provide plenty of food storage. The 292FLBS features a unique slide-out wardrobe/pantry that is strategically located for optimal functionality. The wardrobe slide is next to the kitchen, across from the bathroom and outside the bedroom for food, linen or clothing storage in the hallway.

2015 EverGreen Ever-Lite 292FLBS interior
2015 EverGreen Ever-Lite 292FLBS interior

“This bedroom slide model offers people more interior living space without the added length,” said Vice President of Sales and Marketing Doug Lantz.

“Our new 292FLBS is as much as 1,600 pounds lighter, and two to three feet shorter than other bedroom slide models on the market today.”

The bedroom has more than just a residential style closet with mirrored, sliding doors. Nightstands on both sides of the bed, under bed storage with gas-assisted struts, a large dresser and overhead storage provide more than enough room for camping essentials.

A generous sized bathroom also has a large amount of countertop space, uncommon in similar travel trailers. Above the curved front shower a skylight floods the room with natural light.

The Ever-Lite remains EverGreen’s innovative, composite flagship brand. The up-front investment in composite materials, and the complexity of manufacturing with composites, are just two of the reasons the EverGreen Ever-Lite remains the only composite travel trailer built to this day.

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.

2015 EverGreen Ever-Lite 292FLBS interior
2015 EverGreen Ever-Lite 292FLBS interior

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), two lines of toy haulers (Amped and Tesla), and a Class B motorhome (Imperial).

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 with its Lifestyle Luxury RV division is one of the five largest recreational vehicle manufacturers in North America

2015 EverGreen Ever-Lite 292FLBS interior
2015 EverGreen Ever-Lite 292FLBS interior

Address: 10758 County Road 2, Middlebury, IN 46540

Phone: (574) 825-4298

Website: www.goevergreenrv.com

Worth Pondering…

The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.

—Ayn Rand

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KA-PING! What Was That Sound?

KA-PING! What was that sound?

Our Newmar Dutch Star parked at Durango RV Resort, Red Bluff, California  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Our Newmar Dutch Star parked at Durango RV Resort, Red Bluff, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A stone had been thrown from a medium sized car as it accelerated and merged onto the interstate in front of our motor coach on I-5 in central California. Not an extra loud ping as the rock hit our one-piece windshield and not our first rock chip. And NOT a big deal.

We’ve had small windshield chips before and knew the basics of that.

No crater and no cracks spreading out in all directions.

No need to panic, turn to social media, or contact our insurance company.

If I had turned to social media I’m sure the feedback would run the gamut ranging from Holy Cannolli! to use clear nail polish or bubble gum it.

Later in the day we pulled into big-rig friendly, Durango RV Resort, a 5-star park located on the Sacramento River in Red Bluff.

Most sites are pull-through 70-90 feet in length and 30-35 feet wide. In addition there are 11 riverfront sites and 21 water-feature spaces (fountains); these sites have utilities on both sides of the concrete pads enabling fifth wheels and travel trailer to back onto the sites and motorhomes to drive forward maximizing the view and water features. In addition, there are a number of buddy sites.

Durango RV Resort, Red Bluff, California  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Durango RV Resort, Red Bluff, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The park is well laid out and designed. Utilities including 20/30/50-amp electric service, water, sewer, and cable TV (63 channels) and centrally located. Interior roads are paved, pads are concrete. A beautiful RV resort with friendly and courteous staff. We would return in a heartbeat. But I digress.

We woke up in the morning of April 1—and it was no April Fool’s joke—to a crack in the middle of the windshield two to three feet across. We didn’t think too much about it when the rock hit the windshield the previous day as a car accelerated to merge onto the interstate. The brutally rough California freeways may have may it worse. In the whole scheme of things it’s not the worst thing that could happen.

Windshields really are amazing things. They must meet US DOT standards to withstand an incident like this, and hold up in one piece until you can get them replaced. Windshields are required to be made of safety glass comprised of two pieces of glass with a laminated plastic layer in between that keeps everything held together.

Henry Ford actually started using this style of glass for windshield as early as 1919 when ordinary glass windshields were causing needless deaths from glass fragments.

Insurance policies can vary widely. You may have windshield coverage on your RV insurance policy. For some, it’s an add-on rider, for others it’s included at zero deductible with comprehensive coverage as mandated by state law. Check with your agent or company to know and understand your coverage.

Durango RV Resort, Red Bluff, California  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Durango RV Resort, Red Bluff, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

If you’re a Florida resident and have a Florida policy with comprehensive coverage, here’s a bonus for you: State law mandates that there is no deductible applied to windshield repairs or replacements. The replacement won’t cost you anything but time!

Glass replacement can range in cost depending upon the shape, size, and availability of the windshield. Total cost of replacement might be less than your deductible, if it applies, and not worth filing. For others, it may be well worth filing a claim.

There was no need to alter our travel plans as we were staying several days at the delightful Durango RV Resort.

We started coordinating the windshield replacement by contacting our insurance company and Midtown RV, our Newmar dealer in Penticton, British Columbia, where we had previously booked a service appointment.

We opted to file through our insurance company, as we knew the windshield replacement cost would exceed our $2,500 deductible.

Midtown RV, Newmar and Airstream dealer in Penticton, British Columbia  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Midtown RV, Newmar and Airstream dealer in Penticton, British Columbia © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

We had Midtown RV order the windshield replacement and set us up with an appointment at nearby Sunshine Glass and Mirror to coincide with our service appointment.

Sunshine Glass has many years experience replacing motorhome windshields and understands that RV glass is not the same as passenger vehicle auto glass and is treated differently. We have used them on several previous occasions and found their service to be prompt and efficient. Following the replacement we are advised not to extend the hydraulic jacks or drive the motorhome until the following day. It’s okay to extend the slides.

The following day we’re on the road again.

Worth Pondering…

The only aspect of our travels that is interesting to others is disaster.

—Martha Gellman

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RVers On The Road: Who, What & Where?

An RV is a vehicle that combines transportation and living quarters for travel, recreation, and camping purposes.

Texas Lakeside RV Resort, Port Lavaca, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Texas Lakeside RV Resort, Port Lavaca, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

In this post, we take a look at some RV fun facts, top destinations, and budgets of the estimated 9 million RVs currently on the road.

Fast Facts About RVers

Estimated 9 million households own an RVs

The average RVer is 48 years old

And own their home

39 per cent have children under 18 living at home

Spend an average of 3 weeks traveling annually

Travel an average of 4,500 miles on their RV annually

Medium income: $62,000

Fastest growing segment: 35-54 years old

Intent to buy another RV: 70 percent

Whiskey Flats RV Park, Hawthorne, Nevada © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
The whole concept of RVing is to have fun and enjoy your leisure time. Camping at Whiskey Flats RV Park, Hawthorne, Nevada © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Own their own RV: Average 8.4 years

On their RV over 10 years: 30 percent

Camping clubs had their start with the Tin Can Tourists of the 1920s and 30s who camped on roadsides, using gas stoves to heat food in tin cans and bathed in cold water

Good Sam Club had its start 49 years ago in 1966

Good Sam Club is the world’s largest RV organization with over one million members

RV/MH Hall of Fame and Museum is located in Elkhart, Indiana

Fast Facts About the RV Industry

Produced 1.1 million RVs in the past 4 years

More than 12,000 RV-related businesses in the U.S. with combined annual revenues of more than $37.5 billion

Employs more than a quarter million Americans

Midtown RV, Newmar and Airstream dealer in Penticton, British Columbia © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Midtown RV, Newmar and Airstream dealer in Penticton, British Columbia © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Over 60 percent of all RVs are manufactured in Elkhart County, Indiana

Where Are RVers Going?

Most Popular RV Travel Destinations

Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho

Yosemite National Park, California

Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia and North Carolina

Great Smokey Mountains National Park, North Carolina and Tennessee

Mount Rushmore National Memorial, South Dakota

Disney World and Orlando theme parks, Florida

Fall Foliage Tour

Utah Grand Circle Tour

Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

An RV For Every Budget

RV vacation for a family of four is 27-62 percent less expensive than vacations that include hotel, airfare, and restaurant costs.

There is an RV for everyone’s lifestyle and budget

Folding camping trailer

Truck camper

Travel trailer

Fifth wheel trailer

Class A gas motorhome

Class A diesel pusher motorhome

Class B motorhome or camper van

Class C motorhome

Cherohala Skyway
Fall is one of the most beautiful seasons especially along the Cherohala Skyway Scenic Byway, North Carolina. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Toy hauler or sports utility RV

Let’s Go RVing!

Worth Pondering…

Arguably the best slogan ever written to describe the RV lifestyle comes to mind: Wherever you go, you’re always at home.

We have much to be thankful for, including our great RV lifestyle…

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Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers

Nappanee, Indiana-based Gulf Stream Coach introduced the Vista Cruiser, an ultra-lightweight trailer in the fall of 2009.

Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers
Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers

A design experiment in ultra-low weight construction and ultimate aerodynamics, the Vista Cruiser has turned into a preferred choice among RVers who plan to log serious mileage and spend many days and nights on the road camping, according to a company news release.

Long-haul RVers are flocking to the Vista Cruiser for two fundamental features that have been a part of Vista Cruiser since it first hit dealer lots six years ago.

Extremely low weight and fuel-saving aerodynamics combine to minimize wear-and-tear on the tow vehicle, reduce fuel expenses, and enable RVers to go farther, stay longer, and enjoy more time away from home, according to the release.

The heart of the wind-cheating aerodynamics of the Vista Cruiser is a seamless fiberglass panel up to 26 feet long that stretches from the front hitch to the rear bumper, creating a curved front wall, roof, and rear wall, with no seams, joints, or corners.

Also contributing is a lowered frame that lets the Vista Cruiser slip under air that traditional height units have to plow through, reducing fuel consumption and saving money.

Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers
Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers

A welded six-way aluminum frame and vacuum-bonded laminated walls with synthetic substrates provide ultra-low weights that reduce wear and tear on tow vehicles and make the Vista Cruiser easy to hitch up, maneuver, and tow, even on long trips.

“Since its introduction, RV enthusiasts have been quick to realize the overall benefits of the Vista Cruiser design, realizing it provides an ideal platform for long, high-mileage trips, as well as short, impromptu getaways,” said Tim Dennig, Vista Cruiser national sales manager.

“It also turns mini vans and smaller SUVs into tow vehicles, further reducing the cost and complexity of camping.”

“We’ve seen significantly increased interest at the spring shows this year, with the introduction of our new interior decors and exterior graphics, too,” Dennig added.

The Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser is built with an aluminum frame, laminated fiberglass walls, and unique aerodynamic profile that provides 6 feet 11 inches of interior headroom in a go-anywhere, do-anything lightweight travel trailer you can tow with your mini-van or small SUV.

Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers
Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers

Included in every Vista Cruiser is our passion to build travel trailers of the finest craftsmanship, value, and durability using state-of-the-art eco-friendly composites inside and out, stated the release.

The Vista Cruiser line of ultra-light travel trailers is currently available in 10 floor plans 20 to 26 feet in length, on single and double axles, with weights ranging from 2,600 pounds to 3,900 pounds.

Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser standard features include 20,000 BTU furnace, 2-burner cook-top, 3-way 7.0 cubic foot refrigerator, 6-foot 11-inch interior headroom, two 20-pound LP gas bottles, 6 gallon DSI gas water heater, and 30-amp detachable 28-foot power cord.

Popular options include microwave oven, bumper mounted gas grill with quick connect for LP gas, 19-inch and 29-inch LCD HD TV, 13,500 BTU air conditioner, power awning, and home theater stereo with Blu-Tooth and speakers.

Details

Gulf Stream Coach Inc.

Established in 1983, Nappanee, Indiana-based Gulf Stream is a leading manufacturer of Class A Gas motorhomes, diesel pushers, Class C motorhomes, fifth-wheel trailers, and travel trailers.

Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers
Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser: Preferred Choice In Ultra-Lightweight Trailers

Gulf Stream is organized into three divisions: Luxury Class A Motorhomes, Travel Trailers and Luxury Fifth Wheels, and Yellowstone RV Travel Trailers and Fifth Wheels.

Location: 503 South Oakland Avenue, Nappanee, Indiana

Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1005, Nappanee, Indiana 46550

Phone: (800) 289-8787

Website: www.gulfstreamrvtrailers.com

Worth Pondering…

Happiness is not achieved by the conscious pursuit of happiness; it is generally the by-product of other activities.

—Aldous Huxley

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Back To The 60’s With Reimagined Retro RV

With a nod to the past, Winnebago’s Brave reflects the retro quality of its 1960’s predecessor, while offering today’s best innovations

Winnebago Brave in aquarius
Winnebago Brave in aquarius

In the late ’60s and ’70s, there was no mistaking a Winnebago motorhome. The bold Flying W and iconic “eyebrow” designs were cutting paths to fun and adventure from coast to coast. It was the coach that made America fall in love with motorhomes.

Though the days of Flower Power have long passed, Winnebago decided to revive its classic 1960’s RV with features that incorporate the technologies of today. Perhaps the peace sign is now a thumbs-up as Winnebago has joined other companies that have proven that retro can still turn heads and open pocketbooks.

From Chuck Taylor shoes to Volkswagen’s famous Beetle, Winnebago is capturing a new market by offering the timeless appeal of the past, coupled with the newest features of the present.

With retro offerings trending among younger buyers, Winnebago research indicated that their original 1960’s RV could still captivate customers in the right target markets, according to a company news release.

“The Brave is a testament to both our rich history and bright future in the motorhome lifestyle. More importantly, our sales numbers are proving that retro is still cool,” stated Randy Potts, CEO of Winnebago Industries.

Winnebago Brave 26A in Good Vibrations with Cherry Cola Cabinetry
Winnebago Brave 26A in Good Vibrations with Cherry Cola Cabinetry

“The Winnebago has been re-imagined. This is the iconic Winnebago mom and dad had, modernized. The features truly speak for themselves.”

The new Brave breathes new life into the celebrated design, giving drivers the opportunity to relive childhood memories.

Beyond its stylish appearance, the Winnebago Brave is loaded with versatile floor plans—ideal for weekend getaways or extended trips.

The Brave features a state-of-the-art sliding dash rearview monitor with Rand McNally RV GPS and a powered patio awning as well as Winnebago’s StudioLoft bedding system for added sleeping space.

Winnebago’s classic eyebrow design and “Flying W” sidewall logo earned the top award of the Recreation Vehicle Industry’s 52nd Annual Trade Show.

The Winnebago Brave and its sister, the Itasca Tribute, were given the prestigious title of “RV of the Year” by RV Business Magazine.

Itasca Tribute in Woodstock
Itasca Tribute in Woodstock

Winnebago offers a true sense of discovery and rediscovery with multigenerational appeal.

The Brave and Tribute retail for $96,599 to $121,379 and are available in three 26- to 31-foot floor plans on a 362-hp, V10-powered Ford chassis.

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

Itasca Tribute 27B with Removable Pedestal Table
Itasca Tribute 27B with Removable Pedestal Table

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

Phone: (641) 585-3535

Winnebago Website: www.winnebagoind.com

http://winnebagoind.com/

Itasca Website: goitasca.com

goLife Websitewww.winnebagolife.com

Worth Pondering…

Far too late to understand many of the missed goals in life:

Joy, beauty of nature, health, travel and culture,

Therefore, man is, time wise!
High time is it! Travel, travel!

—Wilhelm Busch (1832-1908)

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The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer

Despite what Matthew McConaughey might have you believe, Airstream trailers are not the only cool campers out there. No, there are others.

The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer
The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer

In an earlier post on Vogel Talks RVing, I introduced the adorably minimalist Cricket Trailer.

Designed and built by Garrett Finney, an ex-NASA architect, the part tent, part RV Cricket Trailer is out-of-this-world cool.

Combining his small-space expertise and backpacking background, Finney designed the Cricket Trailer, a small, self-contained pop-up trailer. It’s his response to today’s house-on-wheels bigger-is-better RV cul­ture.

The Cricket is a kind of hybrid tent and trailer, made of aluminum, wood and steel, with a pop-up style roof—not a house on wheels but a portable adventure living space.

The name Cricket was inspired by an early design sketch, in which the lifts on the pop-up looked like the legs of the insect.

Many of the people who are buying Cricket trailers have never owned a camping trailer before. In describing the company’s philosophy, Finney harkened back to the old 7-Up ads from the 1970s.

The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer
The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer

It packs most everything you’ll need for a week or longer on the road, and despite its small size does not skimp on function.

It’s light. The Cricket Trailer weighs only 1,460 pounds unloaded, yet packs on board fresh water and grey water tanks, an energy-efficient lightweight electric water heater, electrical shore power connection, exterior shower system, a recessed sink with folding cover, energy efficient-water pump, and optional energy efficient refrigerator. All the comforts of home, only smaller and roadworthy.

And there’s ample storage. Lift up a seating cushion to reveal substantial gear stowage space. Under-bed and under-kitchen counter storage adds to available space for your stuff. The roof mounting points were designed to accept a number of modern car top cargo systems.

It also strikes an interesting chord between full-blown trailer and utilitarian pop-up. The walls are rigid from floor to ceiling, and with a simple pop, the roof extends a few feet revealing mesh windows and allowing air circulation.

Underneath, the Cricket Trailer totes a rugged torsion beam suspension and features a foot of ground clearance (an extra two and a half inches with the Sport Edition), built to military spec stress testing standards.

The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer
The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer

The Cricket Trailer is now available in two models: Standard Cricket and Sport Edition.

Features and specifications common to both models include a queen size bed, interior standing height of 6 feet 4 inches, water heater, indoor sink, external shower, and high output LED interior lights.

Optional trailer fixtures include 5,000 BTU air conditioner ($560), tongue box ($315), roof rack bars ($300), kid’s berth ($280), portable toilet ($140), top loading fridge ($1,000), 80 watt solar electric pack ($700), second battery ($240), road safety kit including mounted spare tire ($375), great outdoor kit including awning ($375), and kitchen furnishings including coffee and portable stove ($280).

The Standard Cricket complete with v-berth lounge, water heater, and exterior shower
package starts at $21,700 MSRP.

The Sport Edition complete with exclusive silver panels, higher ground clearance, rugged build, road safety kit, and roof rack standard starts at $24,290 MSRP.

Although the Cricket is earth­bound, the results are out-of-this-world cool.

The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer
The Out-Of-This-World Cool Cricket Trailer

Details

Cricket Trailer

Cricket is a lightweight pop-up trailer, a covered wagon for the New Frontier.

Cricket is a base camp for outdoor fun. Lightweight and athletic, cricket is towable by many four-cylinder engines.

With sleeping room for two adults and up to two children, cricket’s NASA-inspired design and integrated plumbing and electrical systems enable days off the grid.

Three-dimensional storage allows cargo for a long weekend or a longer journey. Built from sensible materials, cricket is affordable, aerodynamic, and rugged enough for dirt roads and gravel tracks.

Address: 6261 Richman Avenue, Unit F, Houston, Texas 77057

Phone: (713) 861-2540

Website: www.crickettrailer.com

Worth Pondering…

Find what brings you joy and go there.

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The Growing Compact Motorhome Market

Forest City, Iowa-based Winnebago Industries, Inc. is forging a distinct new motorhome market for compact, fuel efficient motorhomes.

Winnebago Via in dark bronze mist
Winnebago Via in dark bronze mist

With market share of 43.2 percent in calendar 2014 in this segment, Winnebago has essentially created a new market for customers interested in compact, fuel efficient motorhomes.

“We define a compact motorhome as any Class A, B, or C product with a narrow-width body (90 inches) and is under 26 feet in length,” said Russ Garfin, Winnebago Product Manager, in a company news release.

“Essentially that comes down to new product offerings in which Winnebago has taken the lead. New chassis selections in the past decade, such as the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter and Ram ProMaster, have provided Winnebago the opportunity to create innovative new products that meet the needs of a growing customer base.”

“The compact motorhome category has grown an amazing 83.3 percent since 2006, while the motorhome industry as a whole has declined by 32.1 percent.” Garfin added.

“Our new products have really sparked a growing trend of buyers who want to enjoy the RV lifestyle, but also want an easy-to-drive, fuel-efficient and highly maneuverable full-featured motorhome.”

Winnebago View in carbon champagne
Winnebago View in carbon champagne

According to Statistical Surveys, Inc., 5,441 motorhomes were retailed in the compact motorhome category in calendar 2014, 2,382 (43.8 percent) of which were Winnebago motorhomes.

Since 2006, 27,939 have been retailed in the compact motorhome category, 13,750 (49.2 percent) of which were Winnebago products.

Winnebago products that are included in the compact motorhome category include the Class A Via and Reyo, Class C View, Navion, Trend and Viva, and the Class B Winnebago Touring Coach line of Era and Travato.

The Class A Winnebago Via and Itasca Reyo are built on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis. Three floor plans offer a whole host of arrangements so you can customize your interior to suit your needs.

Also built on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis, the Class C Winnebago View and Itasca Navion offer four attractive floor plans with room for expanded dining and relaxation.

Winnebago Trend in sunset yellow
Winnebago Trend in sunset yellow

Built on the Ram ProMaster chassis, the Winnebago Trend and Itasca Viva offer efficiency and comfortable living space for up to four people. Both 23-foot floor plans offer a powered StudioLoft bed that lifts tight to the ceiling to conserve space during the day. Other features include energy-saving LED lighting and soft, easy-to-clean Ultraleather furniture.

Built on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis, the Class B line of Winnebago Era and Itasca Travato feature Ultraleather swivel cab seats, an available Infotainment Center with Rand McNally RV GPS, MCD blackout roller shades, and Corian galley countertops.

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

Winnebago Era in brilliant silver
Winnebago Era in brilliant silver

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

Phone: (641) 585-3535

Winnebago Website: www.winnebagoind.com

Itasca Website: goitasca.com

goLife Websitewww.winnebagolife.com

Worth Pondering…

The freedom of travel opens the mind to unlimited possibilities.
—Anon

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