Jump to content
  • entries
    353
  • comments
    105
  • views
    337877

About this blog

Journalist Mike Wendland Travels North America in a Class B Motorhome

Entries in this blog

 

Questions About Winterizing an RV

We’ve been talking all week about winterizing our RVs. Yes, the time has come .... Those living in the northern states and those who live where the temperatures drop below freezing, can’t put it off much longer. But people still have a lot of questions and as we wrap up our winterizing series, Jennifer and I answer some reader questions about topics that haven’t yet been addressed. In this edition of How We Roll in our RV, we talk about the need to re-winterize when folks head south and then

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Tis the Season Again – Be Careful Out There

It’s been a long and busy week with two big road trips this past week – one in the Roadtrek eTrek to Kitchener, Ontario, and a visit to the Roadtrek factory for some video work, the other to Pittsburgh, Pa., on another video project. While the Kitchener trip was blessed with great weather, the Pittsburgh trip led to some very white knuckle driving on the way back home when we unexpectedly encountered near white-out conditions from Lake Erie effect snow squalls just est of Cleveland. It was a g

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Winterizing an RV: The Easy Way

I know we’ve talked a lot about winterizing over the past few weeks. But here’s one more report, this one documenting my do-it-yourself winterizing of my Roadtrek eTrek. For the past two years, I’ve paid over $100 to have it winterized by RV service dealers. From the blog and our Facebook page, readers have told me that it’s no big deal and it it is something that even an unhandy handyman like me can do. So this year, I decided to see take their advice and do my own winterizing. I’ve rea

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Apps to Stay in Touch with Family Members

One of the biggest challenges for couples and families these days is staying connected…and keeping busy and often confusing schedules coordinated. When you throw in an RV and lots of traveling, life can really get complicated. That’s where smartphone technology can really help. I have some great apps I juts shared with my NBC-TV audience this week that will help you stay in touch with your spouse and other family members and bring some organization to those busy schedules. One of the handiest

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

How We Roll in Our RV: Air Conditioning and Unattended Pets

It can heat up very fast inside an RV and in this edition of How We Roll in our RV, Jennifer and I answer a question from a reader named Danielle who asks: “I’m thinking about taking my freelance writing business on the road in a small motorhome, and I have a question. I’ll be bringing my dog with me and I’m concerned about leaving her in the RV while running errands. Can a dog overheat in a motorhome as they can in a car? Can the A/C run off the battery while sitting in a parking lot, or would

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Men Don’t Talk in a Duck Blind

I didn’t think I’d make it down the narrow, twisting and very bumpy forest two-track that led to my current camping spot in the middle of a marsh on the edge of Rush Lake, a compact little frown-shaped lake a mile or so south of Lake Huron at the tip of the Michigan thumb. I’m surrounded by state land and cattails, a half dozen yards from where my buddy Jay launched our duck boat. Jay and I have been coming up here to hunt ducks and geese for years. Usually, we stay in a motel in Caseville, th

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

How We Roll in Our RV – Bedding Storage

One of the most asked questions Jennifer and I receive from readers deals with how we sleep in our Roadtrek eTrek Class B motorthome. Our answer is … great! Seriously, we both agree we sleep better in the Roadtrek than we do in our king-sized Sleep Number bed at home. And that has to do with that we sleep on and in while camping out in the Roadtrek. In this edition of How We Roll in our RV, we answer two reader questions about where we store our bedding. We make the eTrek sofa up into a

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Do RVs Dream?

It sits out there in the driveway with the season’s first snow flurries dusting its windshield as the last of the leaves fall from the trees. Inside the RV, there’s the faint but sweet smell of the antifreeze I ran through the plumbing last week. The doors to the refrigerator and the freezer are open to air out. The food and coffee in the storage cupboards are emptied. Only a Roadtreking sweatshirt and a Family Motorcoach Association nylon jacket hang in the once crowded wardrobe. My wide brim

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Total Off-grid Solar-powered RV

I came across this interesting You Tube video from a guy who calls himself “Master Luke.” It shows a 24-foot cargo trailer that he made into a totally solar-powered RV. The entire roof of the trailer is covered with solar panels - 3,130 watts worth of them. The Roadtrek eTrek we drive has a 5,000-watt inverter, a diesel generator and about 250 watts of solar power. But I reckon that we can get more practical RVing use out of our rig than he can with his. That diesel generator charges those ba

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

RV Side Trip: Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve

Craters of the Moon is a U.S. National Monument and National Preserve in the Snake River Plain in central Idaho that is like no where else on earth, a volcanic wonderland that is easy and fun to explore in one of the weirdest landscapes you can find anywhere. And it’s perfect for Class B recreation vehicles. Craters of the Moon formed during eight major eruptive periods between 15,000 and 2000 years ago. Lava erupted from the Great Rift, a series of deep cracks that start near the visitor cent

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Solving the Problem of Bad Doggie Breath in the RV

We love to take our Norwegian Elkhound, Tai, with us when we go Roadtreking. Except for one thing. His breath. It stinks. Literally. In the confined space of an RV, dog breath can get pretty disgusting. We’ve tried chicken-flavored dog toothpaste and brushing his teeth. It works a little. But chicken flavored dog breath is almost as bad as regular dog breath. So it was with great interest that we just discovered something called Orapup – a dog breath brush. It comes with a couple bott

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Adjusting the Cabinet Latches and Hinges on a Roadtrek

One of the most discussed how-to threads on the blog and our Facebook Group has to do with the latches and hinges used on the cabinets on new Roadtrek Sprinter models like the RS Adventurous, the eTrek and the CS Adventurous. The same push button latches are on some of the recent Chevy-based models like the 40th Anniversary Special. They are sold by a Montreal-based speciality hardware import firm called Richelieu. The issue is, depending on a lot of load and environmental factors, the latches

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

How We Roll in our RV – Putting on Make-up and Finding a Rental Roadtrek

In this edition of How We Roll in our RV, we tackle two completely different questions: Jennifer answers a reader named Karen, who wants to know how the Roadtrek eTrek we have works out for her putting on make-up. Jen shows the mirrors she uses along with a handy sticky pad called the Dash Stick that holds a magnifying mirror in place. My question came from a reader named Maggie, who asks about how to find a rental Roadtrek to try out, something Jen and I wish we could have done before we boug

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Decorating the RV for Christmas

Every year since we were married more than 40 years ago, Jennifer and I have made our way to the little town of Frankenmuth, Mich., at the base of the Michigan Mitt’s Thumb region where we pay a visit to Bronner’s – the world’s largest Christmas store. Doubtless you’ve seen the signs along the interstates, more than 60 of them all over the country, inviting tourists to make the drive. It’s a huge store, over seven acres in size. And it’s crowded, especially at this time of the year. Over the t

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Sneak Peek at National RV Trade Show in Louisville, Ky.

The annual Recreation Vehicle Industry Association trade show in Louisville is the big one for the RV industry, providing a sneak peek at what’s new aimed at dealers and industry insiders to help them get ready for the next year. Held at the Massive Kentucky Exposition Center, this year’s 51st edition of the show opens Tuesday. But Jennifer and I got in early for a sneak peek of our own. The RVIA expects more than 8,000 attendees this week. Over 300 acres of display space will be filled by 61

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Why Small Motorhomes are Leading the RV Industry Sales Boom

Type Bs and Cs, the smaller versions of the rapidly growing motorhome market, are leading the way in the dramatic turnaround in the RV industry thanks to the ever growing number of Baby Boomer retirees used to active, mobile lifestyles. I’ve spent much of the past week here at the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association’s annual trade show in Louisville, Ky., talking to leading recreational vehicle industry experts, trade association officials, manufacturers and dealers and all agreed that sa

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

A Roadtreking Happy Thanksgiving

It’s Thanksgiving in the U.S., a few weeks after our Canadian friends celebrated their nation’s holiday of the same name. A tradition at our family is that as we gather round the Thanksgiving dinner table – and yes, we always do turkey and all the trimmings – each one of us says what we are most thankful for this past year. Remember that old Irving Berlin song, “Count Your Blessings?” If we’re breathing and relatively upright – though football and ODing on turkey will probably render many of u

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

We’re Not Full-timers, But We Sure are Close to It

I’ll say one thing about our traveling this past year: No dust is gathering under the RV. We received our new 2013 Roadtrek eTrek one year ago, in December 2012. When I pulled into the driveway Thursday night after returning from an RV trade show in Louisville, the odometer read 34,156 miles. We take off again today for a weekend trip to Western Michigan where we’ll visit Jeff and Aimee in Kalamazoo, our son and daughter-in-law. We’ll probably sleep in the Roadtrek in his driveway. We love ou

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Cool App for RVers: Voyzee

Taking “selfies” and sharing photos and videos with our smartphones is worldwide phenomenon these days and there are lots of apps available to help you take them and share them. But one in particular stands out to me for RV use. It’s called Voyzee and as you can see in the accompanying video, it lets you select your photos and videos, edit them together, add music as a soundtrack and titles to your images. You can even do your own voiceovers. Then, you share it on social media. You can do all

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

My New Roadtreking Tech Tool: A Phantom 2 Drone

I’ve messed around with some low end flying helicopters before and found them to be lots of fun. But I’ve just, gulp, added a big ticket item to my photographic and video arsenal of tools to be used while Roadtreking: A Phantom 2 drone. I’ll be using it for AVC, or aerial video cinematography. It’s really a flying machine, a quadricopter, with four opposing blades sending it up and our as far as a kilometer (3,240 feet) from where I’m standing with the controller. The unit I bought carries

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

My New Roadtreking Tech Tool: A Phantom 2 Drone

I’ve messed around with some low end flying helicopters before and found them to be lots of fun. But I’ve just, gulp, added a big ticket item to my photographic and video arsenal of tools to be used while Roadtreking: A Phantom 2 drone. I’ll be using it for AVC, or aerial video cinematography. It’s really a flying machine, a quadricopter, with four opposing blades sending it up and our as far as a kilometer (3,240 feet) from where I’m standing with the controller. The unit I bought carries

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Trying to Beat a Blizzard

We’ve been riding hard up I75 today, trying to get to our southeastern Michigan home before yet another big winter snowstorm dumps another predicted foot. All the way north, traffic has been unusually heavy in both directions. Lots of other northbounders are returning from long holiday breaks. The southbounders seem downright frantic, fleeing the cold. I’m fighting a strong urge not to turn around. Early afternoon, I did an mobile phone interview from the road with the Internet adviser show on

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

What RVers Need to Know: Weather Lingo

All the winter storm advisories, alerts, watches and warnings that we’ve had lately can be confusing. The National Weather Service does a great job of disseminating weather predictions but sometimes it can be hard to know just what is what. So, for your future reference, here’s a weather lingo tutorial. Weather watches A watch means conditions are right for dangerous weather. In other words, a “watch” means watch out for what the weather could do, be ready to act. For events that come and

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

Warming Up the RV When It’s -12F Outside

My Roadtrek has been encased in ice and snow for the better part of a week now with several days of subzero temperatures. Inside, shielded from the wind with the sun helping to mitigate the extreme outdoor temperature, it was about 15 degrees. So, I got to wondering, how long will it take to warm it up, if, indeed such a thing was possible? Slipping on my boots, a parka and my fuzzy warm hat with ear flaps, I donned my Google Glass and set out to video a first-person experiment. Everythin

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

 

The Ghostly Mystery of the Paulding Light

Every place, it seems, has its own ghosts and mysteries. So it is just north of the tiny Upper Peninsula town of Watersmeet where, for generations, people have gathered at the end of a gravel road to watch some mystery lights. The lights appear nightly, year round near a crossroads community called Paulding. The first reported sightings were back in the 1960s and various investigations have been inconclusive, though a university team from a Michigan Technological University claimed the lights w

Roadtrekingmike

Roadtrekingmike

×
×
  • Create New...