We all rely on our cellphones when we’re traveling by RV but sometimes, we’re in remote areas where a cellphone signal is marginal at best. That’s where cellphone boosters come in. They make it possible to turn a weak signal into a strong one and this week, we’ll learn from an expert just why every RVer can use a cell booster. He’ll explain how they work, the different kinds available and how to choose the one best for you and your RV.
Plus, lots of RV news this week that you need to know about, some RV resources that will help you save money, RV tips and answers to your questions about the RV Lifestyle.
Click the player below to Listen Now or scroll down through the show note details. When you see a time code hyperlink, you can click it to jump directly to that segment of the podcast.
Show Notes for Episode #194 May 30, 2018 of The RV Podcast:
WHAT MIKE AND JENNIFER ARE UP TO THIS WEEK [3:09]
So much for easing into summer. It was 95 in Michigan on Memorial Day. A friend in Minneapolis said the temperature actually hit 100 there for a couple hours. For a lot of RVers out for the long Memorial Day weekend on their first campouts of the season, you just know those air conditioners got a big workout.
Talk about this heat reminds me of something our friend Laura Robinson recently posted on our Roadtreking Facebook Group. It’s a warning about walking your dog across hot parking lots or sidewalks and how fast your pet’s paws can be seriously burned. Listen to this: When the air temperature is 77 degrees, asphalt can heat up to 125 degrees. When the air temperature is 86, it can reach 136 degrees. And when the air temperature is 87 degrees, the asphalt can be 143 degrees. Since the experts say skin destruction can occur with just 60 seconds exposure to 125 degrees, the warning is very clear: Your pet’s paws will be burned if you insist on walking them across hot asphalt. Always check the asphalt prior to walking your pet. If it is painful to your hand, it will hurt your pet.
We’ll put a little graphic of that up with the shownotes for this episode. You can find it at Roadtreking.com/194. But that is very good advice. And it applies to hot sand and hot concrete, or hot rocks and granite as well. Our pets will follow us anywhere so its up to us to be responsible.
We’re getting ready to begin a very full summer season of travel. Mike had the tires rotated and balanced on our RV last week. This week, we’re doing an oil change, fluid and belt checks and a lot of preparation inside the RV. Mike has some new camera gear he’ll be taking on our travels this year and I’m doing a thorough cleaning. Once we take off next week for Montana, we’ll be on the road pretty much all the way through until we take a little break at Christmas.
One thing we and everyone else will notice is how much more expensive fuel is this year. After a few years of decline, prices are way up there again. Well over $3 a gallon for gas, about $3.25 for diesel. And the auto club is predicting that trend to continue for most of the summer.
Just as a comparison, last year at this time, the average for gas in the US was about $2.37. Diesel was $2.65. So both are up a little over 60-cents a gallon. We just out a video up on our RV Lifestyle You Tube Channel on three apps we use in our smartphones that help us find stations with the best prices as we travel. See the video at: https://youtu.be/uIdADZHPJxA
Here’s something else we need to pass along relating to technology. The FBI and Homeland Security had a big announcement over the weekend about another hacking attack, this one directed at routers. The warning had to do with malware being injected in various routers, which many people have in their homes for their wifi setups. Let me quote from the release: “The FBI recommends any owner of small office and home office routers reboot the devices to temporarily disrupt the malware and aid the potential identification of infected devices.”
The natural question for RVers us does this apply to mobile hotspots or devices like the WiFi Ranger, which many of us use? Since both of those function, in effect, as mini routers, outfits that we trust like the Mobile Internet Resource Center recommends that, at the minimum, we should unplug and reboot those hotspots and RV routers.
OK… now three news stories thus week of interest to RVers, all relating to wildlife
After two bike riders were attacked, one fatally, by a cougar in the woods outside Seattle last week, Washington officials are urging all campers and outdoor enthusiasts to review cougar safety tips. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife said there are about 80,000 cougars in the state, which are most active from dust to dawn. Some tips include hiking in small groups, keeping camps clean, making sure small children in a group, and more. To read the tips click here, to read about the attack click here.
A man was out for a morning run at Canada's Elk Island National Park when a bison charged him, goring him in the rear end. The man and his wife were camping at the park's campground. The man apparently left his wife sleeping in the tent when he went out for a morning jog and was attacked. He ended up in the hospital. For more information click here.
Have you ever been on a Pacific coast vacation and decided to take a whale viewing boat to sea? A story was in the Canadian news last week that showed 10 boats chasing around a pod of Orcas, and is triggering a discussion about whether the whale watching business needs greater regulation. Some residents of British Columbia said they have seen 25 boats chasing around the giants for whale watching tourists. Because of this some predict tough new regulations out of Canada in the fall, with Washington state also studying the issue. Click here to read more.
This portion of the Podcast is brought to you by Campers Inn, the RVer’s trusted resource for over 50 years, the nation’s largest family-operated RV dealership with 19 locations and growing
JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK [15:06]
Do you have a favorite campground where you return to again and again? You may visit annually, or maybe once every couple years. But have you ever started to make reservations at a favorite spot only to find you can't remember which sites were the best – and which were the ones to avoid.
Well, I recently stumbled across something on the internet that offers just the fix. It is a campground review sheet I found on a website called “All Those Details” produced by a woman named Sarah in the California bay area.
The sheets contain prompts where you write down the name of the campground, the dates you visited, the good and bad spots, where the closest diesel selling gas station is located, and other such details.
The page includes suggestions on what to list in each category. For example, under general details Sarah recommends describing such things as the shower and toilet condition, water source, and if it is quiet at night.
In the spot for site details, Sarah recommends writing about how level the site is, how close the neighbors are and maybe something on the firepit.
The sheets on this website can be printed, easily filled out, then stored in a three ring binder. And the best part? it is completely free!
I could also see recording such information electronically on a database you create and keeping with you on your computer. And if you are boondocking, versus staying at an official campground, recording descriptions of where you are so you can find it again could still be helpful.
I thought the idea of having an organized system for taking notes on the campgrounds we visit was excellent. I am looking forward to printing some of these sheets, and using them to better remember places in the future.
Here’s a link to the sheets that you can download – http://www.allthosedetails.com/campground-reviews/#more-1012
And be sure to send me your tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Roadtreking.com. Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox.
I love hearing from you!
Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by RadPower Bikes ,an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping To see our Rad Power Bikes in action, just click here. Visit WWW.RADPOWERBIKES.COM
LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK [20:27]
Joseph wants to retire and travel in an RV across the country, maybe settling down someplace nice for six months of the year. But his wife is not on the same page. He is asking for advice. We jump in both feet.
Dena is seeking info on the RV parks we stay at as we travel and wants us to share a list. Since we never know where we will stay until we’re there, we can’t help much. We share our style of traveling.
Lois asks about the American Coach Patriot and wonders what we think about it. We will soon have a video on the Patriot Cruiser model. We give some quick impressions. Made by the REV Group, formerly Allied Specialty Vehicles, we saw them at an RV show in Phoenix a few weeks ago. The parent company makes buses, fire and emergency vehicles and now luxury conversion vehicles after some corporate acquisitions. They have Class A, C and B RVs…Besides American Coach, they have own the Fleetwood, Monaco and Holiday Rambler brands. Their Class B vans came from their acquisition of Midwest Automotive Designs, a super nice Class B and Luxuty van manufacturer in Elkhart, IN. We were very impressed by what we saw. That video on the Patriot model will be coming in a couple weeks to our YouTube Channel at RVLifestyleChannel.com. Subscribe and click the little bell icon when you do and you will be notified of new videos as they are released.
This part of the podcast is sponsored by Steinbring Motorcoach, Roadtrek’s newest dealer and a third generation family business in Minnesota’s beautiful Chain of Lakes region built on quality motorhomes and excellent pricing and service.
INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK [42:25]
We all rely on our cellphones when we’re traveling by RV but sometimes, we’re in remote areas where a cellphone signal is marginal at best. That’s where cellphone boosters come in. They make it possible to turn a weak signal into a strong one and this week, we’ll learn from an expert just why every RVer can use a cell booster.
He is Josh Barnes, a Senior Product Line Manager for Wilson Electronics, maker of the popular Weboost line of cell boosters for autos, trucks and RVs.
I’ve been using the Weboost line in our RV for the past six years. I can’t begin to count the number of times my cell booster made all the difference in getting me a useable connection through my cell phone or Jetpack datacard.
In this interview, Josh explains how these systems work and how to determine what model may be best for you.
To get more information on the Weboost system and their various systems, use my special affliate link at: https://roadtreking.com/weboost
The model recommended for most RVs is the Drive 4G-X . Click on this Amazon affiliate link and you can see every part of the system and a video on how and where it can be installed.- https://amzn.to/2xnV0z4
The interview of the week is brought to you by SunshinestateRVs.com, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country
TRAVELING TECH TIP [59:26]
By Steve Van Dinter
With the kids’ summer vacation close at hand, they’re going to be looking for more freedom. But with that freedom can come some added dangers. Today, I wanted to talk about some apps that can help families out.
First, the Verizon Family Locator app. It helps you monitor where your children are at any time. Not only will you get email or text alerts when they get to or leave their friend’s house for instance, but you can also see their location as a pin on a map anytime you’d like.
Second, seasoned parents know that—like it or not—we all end up in the emergency room with our kids eventually. Luckily there’s an app to help you navigate that experience. The Family Medical Info app can store vital information on your family’s medical history, including lists of prescriptions, allergies and vaccinations along with any medical conditions. The app also allows you to contact your primary care physician or insurance rep with the tap of a button.
A companion app—ICE: In Case of Emergency—makes your child’s medical info available to EMTs and doctors even when the smartphone is locked.
For better parental control over your child’s digital interactions, Verizon Smart Family lets you govern when, how and with whom your child communicates, restricting their usage hours and limiting calls, text messages and purchase options. As an added bonus, it can help manage your child’s data usage—ensuring you don’t exceed your monthly limit.
And lastly, there’s always the scary thought in the back of a parent’s mind that their child could go missing while out in a crowd. Unfortunately, according to the FBI, more than 400,000 children are reported missing each year. That sobering statistic is why the FBI has created a free Child ID app (available for Android™ and iOS) with safety tips and advice on what to do in the event of a crisis.
The app lets you store up-to-date photos and information about your child that is vital to detectives in the critical first 48 hours of a missing person investigation. Simply use the special tab on the app to quickly e-mail the information to authorities with a few clicks.
With any luck, you won’t need a lot of these apps. But it might just make you sleep better knowing you have them.
This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide.
RV CALENDAR OF EVENTS [1:02:11]
Please Subscribe and Give Us a Rating and Review!
Many listeners are asking how they can subscribe, review and rate the Roadtreking Podcast on iTunes. With a new podcast like this, those reviews and ratings are really important to be able to show well in the iTunes listings. So if you can, I’d sure appreciate it if you’d subscribe and leave me your review.
First, open up the iTunes app on your computer or mobile device. Click on Podcasts up on the top
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