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  • Seeking cold weather camping tips

    Hi,

    We are in between houses and set to live in our Fox Mountain 235RLS from mid-February into April at a well know campground chain's location in southern Kentucky. Average temps at this time of year get down into 20s but it can get much colder for a few days. We are new to RVing generally and cold weather camping in particular. We are set to turn on holding tank heaters (potable, gray & black each electrically heated), use primarily electric infrared & ceramic space heater, electric refrigeration trying to keep propane use down. We plan to have furnace set to 55 or so as we heat with shore powered space heaters. We will have a 30 Amp full hookup site. We also have a heated hose for water hookup.

    Just looking for any tips, learned experiences etc that will make our adventure go a little bit easier. Should we, for example, get an external propane tank, is that hard to connect up, should we just leave it as a backup ready to replace an empty one? Should we stay hooked up to water or just fill the tank when it is above freezing? Anything you might suggest would be welcomed.

    Thanks for sharing your experiences as it really helps newbies like ourselves to avoid costly rookie mistakes.

  • #2
    Sounds like you have a solid plan.

    One bit of advice - with it being cold outside and warm inside + cooking, breathing, showering, etc., your going to have a lot of humidity inside the trailer.

    I know it sounds counterintuitive, but in cold weather, we always keep a window cracked open during cooking, use the bathroom fan during showers and keep a bedroom window cracked open at night. Each adult adds over a cup of water by breathing into the air. Exhausting added water vapor as soon as possible is the best bet - before carpets, clothing, etc. get damp.

    If you start noticing excessive water collecting on your interior windows or frames (some moisture is normal), then it's time to adjust your humidity levels. There are dehumidifiers and passive chemicals (Damp-Rid) on the market if needed.

    If you use a water pressure regulator (you should), they don't like freezing temperatures. Keep it wrapped up or inside when not in use.

    Your campground staff and RV neighbors will be a wealth if information & assistance. I would call them before you arrive and ask if other RV'rs use external LP tanks in the winter. Might be cheaper to get a large tank delivered and buying the propane BEFORE you need it + they may waive delivery charges / tank rental.

    You'll have a great time - we love camping in cold weather!

    Travel Blog: www.rocklinroamers.wordpress.com

    2015 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD:SRW, Duramax / Allison 6.6L Turbo-Diesel, Extended Cab, Long Bed, 4x4, Reese 16K Hitch, 50gal In-Bed Fuel Tank (85 gals total)

    2016 Arctic Fox 29-5T:Six-Point Leveling System, Fireplace, Two A/C's, Two Honda EU2000i Generators, TST "507" Tire Monitoring System, King-Size Bed, Progressive 'Hard-Wired' 50amp Surge Protector, 16gal Water Heater, Slide-Toppers, Power-Reel, 'G Rated' Sailun Tires.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by RocklinDave View Post
      Sounds like you have a solid plan.

      One bit of advice - with it being cold outside and warm inside + cooking, breathing, showering, etc., your going to have a lot of humidity inside the trailer.

      I know it sounds counterintuitive, but in cold weather, we always keep a window cracked open during cooking, use the bathroom fan during showers and keep a bedroom window cracked open at night. Each adult adds over a cup of water by breathing into the air. Exhausting added water vapor as soon as possible is the best bet - before carpets, clothing, etc. get damp.

      If you start noticing excessive water collecting on your interior windows or frames (some moisture is normal), then it's time to adjust your humidity levels. There are dehumidifiers and passive chemicals (Damp-Rid) on the market if needed.

      If you use a water pressure regulator (you should), they don't like freezing temperatures. Keep it wrapped up or inside when not in use.

      Your campground staff and RV neighbors will be a wealth if information & assistance. I would call them before you arrive and ask if other RV'rs use external LP tanks in the winter. Might be cheaper to get a large tank delivered and buying the propane BEFORE you need it + they may waive delivery charges / tank rental.

      You'll have a great time - we love camping in cold weather!
      Thanks so much Dave & Donna! Definitely forgot about the chimney, so thanks again.

      I got the Reese 16k hitch too so good to know you use it. Do you take it out? Currently, I took the head assembly out of the hitch frame, removed the thick, snap pin-secured connecting bolt. We are keeping it in secure storage facility inside the 5th Wheel's under cab trunk (drop cloth under it for lubricant drippings). Do you remove the head assembly and/or hitch frame (take out the 4 Carter pins securing frame to bed rails) for truck bed space?

      Also, are rental & delivery of filled, large propane tanks (60-100 lbs?) typically allowed in campgrounds? Any typical minimum rental term? Is there any special equipment, hose extensions or regulator type connecting stuff, to connect the rental tank, or do I just use connection off of whichever of the 2 - 30 pound tanks gives out first to connect to rental tank?

      Comment


      • #4
        Might check out
        https://www.nroa2003.com/forum/forum...-30amp-service
        2018 GMC 3500 SB diesel with pull rite superglide
        2017 Arctic fox 27-5l 50Amp 5.5 Gen, 4 6 volt, 450W solar,ARPrv,michelin xps,power watchdog, Tank Heat Pads and 4 Point Leveling System

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Art View Post
          Worst case I run a outdoor power cord to pedestal 20 Amp outlet. Door should close over cord, or if window is cracked can run it in there.15A circuit should suffice though. I ran the ceramic in a truck camper for hours on end.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by bobpamt94 View Post

            Worst case I run a outdoor power cord to pedestal 20 Amp outlet. Door should close over cord, or if window is cracked can run it in there.15A circuit should suffice though. I ran the ceramic in a truck camper for hours on end.
            Yep at least you are aware.
            Somebody talked about running the cord through a gap in the slide out as they are putting it out.
            2018 GMC 3500 SB diesel with pull rite superglide
            2017 Arctic fox 27-5l 50Amp 5.5 Gen, 4 6 volt, 450W solar,ARPrv,michelin xps,power watchdog, Tank Heat Pads and 4 Point Leveling System

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by bobpamt94 View Post

              Thanks so much Dave & Donna! Definitely forgot about the chimney, so thanks again.

              I got the Reese 16k hitch too so good to know you use it. Do you take it out? Currently, I took the head assembly out of the hitch frame, removed the thick, snap pin-secured connecting bolt. We are keeping it in secure storage facility inside the 5th Wheel's under cab trunk (drop cloth under it for lubricant drippings). Do you remove the head assembly and/or hitch frame (take out the 4 Carter pins securing frame to bed rails) for truck bed space?

              Also, are rental & delivery of filled, large propane tanks (60-100 lbs?) typically allowed in campgrounds? Any typical minimum rental term? Is there any special equipment, hose extensions or regulator type connecting stuff, to connect the rental tank, or do I just use connection off of whichever of the 2 - 30 pound tanks gives out first to connect to rental tank?
              I keep my whole hitch receiver in the bed of the truck on trips. Only take out at home if we're not going to be on the road for a month or two, or need the space for hauling.

              I have a lock on the pin that holds the head to the legs (see photo). I also have pin locks that secure the hitch receiver to the bed of the truck (see photo). I also have a lock on the release handle.

              Since we stay at RV parks, campgrounds, truck stops and rest areas... I don't want some idiot pulling the release handle / bed pins as a 'joke' or stealing the hitch while unhooked.

              We've never rented / utilized a rental LP tank, but they are popular with extended stay full-timers in many RV parks we've stayed at. Can't help you with how the propane companies do the hook-ups.

              Click image for larger version

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              Travel Blog: www.rocklinroamers.wordpress.com

              2015 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD:SRW, Duramax / Allison 6.6L Turbo-Diesel, Extended Cab, Long Bed, 4x4, Reese 16K Hitch, 50gal In-Bed Fuel Tank (85 gals total)

              2016 Arctic Fox 29-5T:Six-Point Leveling System, Fireplace, Two A/C's, Two Honda EU2000i Generators, TST "507" Tire Monitoring System, King-Size Bed, Progressive 'Hard-Wired' 50amp Surge Protector, 16gal Water Heater, Slide-Toppers, Power-Reel, 'G Rated' Sailun Tires.

              Comment


              • #8
                Many people add skirting under their rv. Keeps the rv much warmer. The least expensive way is to go to HD or Lowes and buy styrofoam insulation and some wood and DIY your own skirting. There are many YouTube videos showing how to do this. Not pretty but VERY effective.
                Terry Haynes
                USAF Retiree. 2018 29-5T, Disc Brakes, Slipper Springs, SoftStart, RV Airflow,12v EverChill frig, Pantry & Bsmt slides, Slide Toppers, Drain Master, LevelMatePRO, 2 A/Cs, SeeLevel II, TorkLift Steps, 3.8KW Gen, 4 BB Batteries, Victron Multiplus II, Clr Ctrl GX & 712 Battery Monitor, Clear Source Ultra & Acuva H2O Filter
                2019 RAM 3500 CTD SRW LB Longhorn, B&W Hitch, BAK Flip Cover, TST w/ truck and RV spare tire monitors, 4 cam Haloview, 60 gal aux fuel tank, 60A dc-dc charger

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by RocklinDave View Post

                  I keep my whole hitch receiver in the bed of the truck on trips. Only take out at home if we're not going to be on the road for a month or two, or need the space for hauling.

                  I have a lock on the pin that holds the head to the legs (see photo). I also have pin locks that secure the hitch receiver to the bed of the truck (see photo). I also have a lock on the release handle.

                  Since we stay at RV parks, campgrounds, truck stops and rest areas... I don't want some idiot pulling the release handle / bed pins as a 'joke' or stealing the hitch while unhooked.

                  We've never rented / utilized a rental LP tank, but they are popular with extended stay full-timers in many RV parks we've stayed at. Can't help you with how the propane companies do the hook-ups.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Dave & Donna,

                  Locking the through bolt that secures the 16k head assembly to the legs is a great idea! The snap pin has always made me nervous, looks so weak on top of the theft concern. Any special lock, i.e. material strength, or just good steel Master lock that fits snugly through the snap pin bolt and hitch assembly holes? Same question for for lock used on release handle.

                  Not sure how that second picture of the leg feet being locked to bed rails works. Is that "O" oval ring piece welded to the pin, then the lock is attached? I have carter pins that thread through each of the 4 thick bent rods that thread through the hitch frame's feet and rails.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bobpamt94 View Post

                    Dave & Donna,

                    Locking the through bolt that secures the 16k head assembly to the legs is a great idea! The snap pin has always made me nervous, looks so weak on top of the theft concern. Any special lock, i.e. material strength, or just good steel Master lock that fits snugly through the snap pin bolt and hitch assembly holes? Same question for for lock used on release handle.

                    Not sure how that second picture of the leg feet being locked to bed rails works. Is that "O" oval ring piece welded to the pin, then the lock is attached? I have carter pins that thread through each of the 4 thick bent rods that thread through the hitch frame's feet and rails.
                    The pin that secures the hitch legs to the truck bed rails is hardened steel. The pin came with a small hitch pin clip that was easily removable (worthless). I bough four pin lock plates from etrailer that slip over the pin notch and slide closed - a small lock prevents the plate from being removed.

                    I just used a standard Master lock on the hitch bolt. All of the locks are to just prevent theft and don't have any load on the shackle areas.

                    https://www.etrailer.com/Hitch-Pins-...e/RP58093.html
                    Travel Blog: www.rocklinroamers.wordpress.com

                    2015 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD:SRW, Duramax / Allison 6.6L Turbo-Diesel, Extended Cab, Long Bed, 4x4, Reese 16K Hitch, 50gal In-Bed Fuel Tank (85 gals total)

                    2016 Arctic Fox 29-5T:Six-Point Leveling System, Fireplace, Two A/C's, Two Honda EU2000i Generators, TST "507" Tire Monitoring System, King-Size Bed, Progressive 'Hard-Wired' 50amp Surge Protector, 16gal Water Heater, Slide-Toppers, Power-Reel, 'G Rated' Sailun Tires.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      When temps get cold, we bring in our slides for the night (less space to heat). Snow or freezing rain, they stay in until the storm passes to prevent damage. Make sure your batteries are maintained well in case of power outage (generator backup?). Keep a full freshwater tank uncase you lose water at the park. Consider stowing freshwater hose and using tank water during extreme cold. Have a few movies, books, and games to pass the time if needed.
                      Randy & Connie
                      Walnut Creek, CA
                      2016 6.7L Ford F-350 SRW, EEZ TPMS
                      2016 27-5L, 5.5kW Gen, 600W Solar, 400Ah Lithium, Hybrid 3kW Inverter, plus a few other Mods.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        What ever you do out there be careful with portable heaters. This guy was visiting Bend and his sewer line froze up and he ended up loosing his whole rig.https://ktvz.com/news/fire/2022/01/0...-to-thaw-hose/
                        2021 25R 2017 GMC 2500 6L Gas

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Werk View Post
                          What ever you do out there be careful with portable heaters. This guy was visiting Bend and his sewer line froze up and he ended up loosing his whole rig.https://ktvz.com/news/fire/2022/01/0...-to-thaw-hose/
                          That was at Crown Villa RV Park too, a very upscale RV Park.

                          MY recommendations for cold weather camping involve hooking up the trailer, driving about 1000 miles south to Yuma, and don't worry about any of the advice above....
                          2006 Chevy HD2500 DuramaxLBZ-Allison ExCab Longbed LT3 4x4
                          Line-X, A.R.E. CX Shell, KargoMaster Rack, Prodigy
                          2005 Arctic Fox 22H, Yamaha EF3000iSEB
                          Celia's Gourmet Foods
                          Gourmet Barrel Aged Balsamic Vinegars & Infused Olive Oils

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                          • #14
                            We once stayed for an extended time at Tiger Run RV park in Breckenridge (9,000 feet) during the winter and rented a big tank. It came with the appropriate hose to connect directly to the RV switchover. Dirt simple - unplug the 30lb tank and plug it into the rental tank. That was long ago so I don't remember the costs but it was a lot easier than filling our 30lb tanks every couple of days.

                            Other tips, we used a heated water hose to connect to the RV parks heated supply. We were near the parks recreation center with bathrooms, laundry, jacuzzis, so the need to dump the black tank wasn't frequent. We didn't hook up the sewer hose until we needed to dump - that eliminated any freezing problems with the hose.

                            I've also stayed at the Air Force Academy's FAMCAMP (not quite as cold as the Breckenridge area and lower at about 6800') for three months over Dec-Feb about five years ago with a similar setup. I was plugged into shore power and a ceramic heater kept me warm enough along with the furnace set to about 55 degrees. I recall the 30lb tanks lasted about a week each so I didn't bother with renting a large propane tank. I did have a heated water hose but again left off the sewer hose until needing to dump.
                            Retired Air Force
                            2019 Ford SuperDuty with 6.2 gas, HD spring package
                            2022 AF28F, 500 watts solar. 230 amp-hr 6v batteries
                            Equal-i-zer WDH

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                            • #15
                              Thank you for so generously sharing your experiences and suggestions!

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