IT WAS ABOUT THIS POINT IN APRIL OF 2007 WE DECIDED WE HAD TO MAKE A CHANGE (Pancho Villa State Park in Columbus, New Mexico)
Another cool rainy early spring day here so not a lot going on. It was in April of 2007 that we made the switch from a truck & fifth wheel trailer to a motorhome & no I'm not going to bash back & forth about which is better because when it comes right down to the bottom line it just depends on the personal preferences & circumstances of each & every RV'er.
For years we had often talked about which kind of RV we would get someday if the opportunity presented itself. Well, in late summer of 06 that opportunity did present itself & we were off on our hunt. Back & forth we went between motorhomes & 5'vers. So many pros & cons. So many preferences, desires, wants, & needs. We certainly did not want to rush into anything & make any big mistakes so with that foremost in mind...... we rushed right out & made a big mistake.
Actually we only had a couple of months to find something before heading off to the southwest. Friends of ours had a really nice exceptionally clean Silverado truck & Rockwood fifth wheel for sale & we of course were knocked out by the 'Wow' factor. A deal was struck & we brought the truck & trailer home happy as a couple little ants in a sugar bowl. Had some doubts about the lighter truck's ability to pull the trailer in the heavy mountain regions of the southwest so traded it in for a bigger GMC truck & were soon headed off down the road for the great American Southwest.
FIRST TRUCK & 5VER - SECOND TRUCK (click on photos to enlarge)
I think it was in Columbus New Mexico on our way home about 2 months later when it finally became apparent to us that we may have made a wrong decision. We slowly began to realize we had not clearly thought the whole RV vehicle thing through clearly enough. Main concern was the 3 doggy guys. They had to ride the many long tedious miles in the small seat behind the front seats so we constantly had dog breath breathing over our shoulders for miles & miles. I had to build a ramp before we left to get the guys in & out & they were always crowded back there too.
TEACHING THE GUYS TO USE THE RAMP:))
ROCKHOUND STATE PARK, NEW MEXICO
Had to carry a separate generator in the back of the open truck & I didn't much care for having to wrestle with that thing all the time. Not a lot of storage space in that fifth wheel compared to the motorhome we have now either. And, I never did care for that hooking up procedure but I did prefer the manual leveler legs on the Rockwood compared to the troublesome hydraulic levelers we have on our Damon motorhome now. And the fact we had to drive around in a big tight suspension pick up truck when we got to where we were going didn't impress me either. Those trucks may be fine on smooth paved roads but get them out on the bumpy back roads of the desert & the ride is like an old lumber wagon with every bump trying to eject you through the roof. I'm sure some guys think this is really cool but I am not one of them!!!!
TRUCK WAS COMFORTABLE AS LONG AS IT WASN'T ON A ROUGH ROAD (Darby Wells road west of Ajo AZ.)
Our 28' Rockwood was also known as an ultra lite which meant it didn't have the full insulation, etc that other 5th wheels have & this was made quite apparent to us in Columbus, New Mexico when the temps dropped below freezing & it snowed for a few days. We just could not get warm inside that thing. I think we had pretty much made up our minds by this time & on the way home that year we ran into heavy Michigan snow storms that promptly took care of any remaining doubts in our mind. We picked up a lot of ice & slush on the trailer & the added weight made it buck like a rodeo bronco. I couldn't even hold a cup of coffee steady in the cab. By the time we pulled into our driveway in Bayfield the writing was on the wall. We had made a poor first choice & were going to have to start all over again.
HAD TO USE A PROPANE TORCH & UN-THAW THE HITCH TO GET THE TRAILOR OFF THE TRUCK
We spent about a month running around looking at motorhomes in the area & reading reams of info on the internet. Thought about a bigger Class C for a bit but we had already had a couple of those & decided a motorhome was a better way for us to go. Looked at some more rigs in London & then I remembered seeing a fellow's place in Grand Bend with 5 or 6 motorhomes for sale, so that's where we headed.
WE WERE ORIGINALLY INTERESTED IN THE CENTER RIG WITH TWIN VERTICAL WINDOWS
We were impressed right off the bat with Ron Krauter at FOUR SEASONS PERFORMANCE. Ron & his wife Jan are RV'er's themselves & spend their winter's in the southwest around Parker, Arizona. Ron is extremely knowledgeable about RV's & the whole RV lifestyle. Looked at some coaches but Ron said to hold on because he was heading to Florida in a couple weeks & picking up a Damon Challenger 329 that he thought would be perfect for us, and he was right.... it was:))
TRADING IN THE TRUCK & TRAILER FOR THE MOTORHOME
DRIVING THE BIG RIG HOME TO BAYFIELD FROM GRAND BEND ON APRIL 17TH, 2007
At 33' with the Workhorse Chassis & Chevy Vortec 8.1 gasoline engine it pulls our little Santa Fe effortlessly. If it wasn't for the rear view camera we would never know it's there. The dogs are much happier now with all the extra room while we are moving & I love all the extra space in the big storage bins. And, it's much more fun to drive. Another unexpected thing I like is the fewer gasoline stops on the road. Much bigger gas tank than the truck so we can go greater distances without refueling. Fighting with stupid gas pumps is one of my major pet peeves by the way & I'll blog about that in another post soon.
THE RIG HAS LANDED.....HOME SWEET HOME:))
Again, this post is not meant to ruffle any feathers in the ever ongoing debate between which is the better RV to have. Like I said, it all boils down to each individual RV'er's wants & needs. For us at this age & stage of our RVing life a motorhome works best for us. In the future, who knows.......maybe a tent & sleeping bag again. Ya right!!!!
TONIGHT'S YUMMY SUPPER....Large flake oatmeal with a smattering of 5 grains granola thrown in. Topped off with raisins, brown sugar & banana slices. Skim milk finished off the masterpiece:))
GROANER'S CORNER:(( Did you know that when the TV repairman got married the reception was excellent or that a cardboard belt would be a waist of paper.
But, not to worry because the little old woman who lived in a shoe wasn't the sole owner - there were strings attached. And besides, when the smog lifts in Los Angeles, U C L A. And, just in case you think I'm getting a little to smart alecky here, just keep in mind that those who get too big for their britches will be exposed in the end. Ok, & don't tell anyone about the dog who gave birth to puppies near the road and was ticketed for littering.
Tourists see the world, travelers experience it.
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The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...... AL.