View Full Version : Describe your camping rig/equipment
05-12-2003, 10:48 AM
JUst wondering what is the most popular form of camping with the members. My family just moved up from tent camping and got our first pop up. We were very lucky to get it and being it is in such great shape. We got a 1978 Apache Mesa with the all hard sides. No canvas and everrything in working order, lifting chains, trailer, inside stove, furnace, icebox, sink, electical. At first I had never heard of Apache but after some research these are great campers.
So just a little poll to see what you use.
I was talking with a friend and he described the two types of camping people the best. Either you camp and continually try to bring more of the comforts of home with you or you camp and continaully try to leave more and more comforts at home.
05-12-2003, 10:53 AM
I'm a tent camper.
I don't have a wife or kids who complain about sleeping in a canvas bag. I like being able to carry my tent in my backpack. It gives me the freedom to pack up and move camp when and where I want to.
05-12-2003, 11:38 AM
We used tents for years. Last year bought our first pop-up, a '96 Jayco Eagle Series. We like it alot but, now want to sell and get a trailer. With the trailer you just un-hitch and your pretty much done. The pop-up is nice but, we just want it even easier after working all week, why work more?
We are campers that haul quite a bit with us camping too, but we're usually staying a good amount of time and need 'most' of it:)
05-12-2003, 11:41 AM
Used to be a tent camper, but now with the kid we thought a pop up would be better. I have a canvas side Jayco that has gone from my parents, to my sister, to another sister, to me. Keeping it in the family...
05-12-2003, 12:52 PM
I camp in a tent but been thinking about a popup.
You forgot to put truck in your poll, I have sleep countless nights in the cab of my pickup!!:D Drive up the night before get some sleep get up early and fish!
I have a buddy he has topper on his truck, he has rigged the inside with a cot. and a very organized storage system. His camper is the back of his chevy.
05-12-2003, 01:21 PM
Wolverine Pickup Camper
05-12-2003, 02:50 PM
We started out with a tent. I can remember Dana changing diapers on our youngest in it. That can get a little close. We went camping a lot and really enjoyed it. I was working for a company that built school buses and was just starting to build motor homes. I found out that I got a pretty good discount as an employee and when they started to build a class C unit we talked it over and decided to take the plunge. Just before I signed the papers, I was talking to a local dealer (Not a Superior dealer) about the different options. To make a long story short, I ended buying a competitors unit, GMC, which I thought was comparable in construction (I worked at the plant that was making ours) at a much better price. I thought I was going to get fired before the stink over that was done, but they redid the policy on employee discounts instead. The Motor home was great until the kids were not happy going someplace and staying. I did a lot of traveling back then and Dana would have it packed and pick me up at the airport many Fridays for a family weekend with the kids. A family favorite was going to the Waterloo State Park in MI ice skating. After everyone got tired of skating, I would set up for some ice fishing. Can't beat warming up in the motor home with hot chocolate This worked winter and summer, hunting and fishing, and many summer vacations until the kids got to Jr High. In those days no one pulled a vehicle behind their motor homes and if someone wanted to go to town for a movie, you had to take the motor home. After a year of this going to town all the time with the kids (we had the motor home for 5 years total) we got a Jayco pop up. Worked great with the kids and was easy to set up. The only draw back was trying to take it down in cold weather. Next to impossible when it gets below freezing. We had a small furnace in it so it would thaw the canvas as long as it didn't get too cold. After the kids were out on their own and gone, Dana and I decided we wanted something that would handle the cold weather better and now have a Jayco 28' 5th wheel with a slide out. We bought it in 1994 and love it. This baby has been towed more miles than the mileage on most people's cars. Since we retired it has made 5 trips to Florida, one each to Colorado and Myrtle Beach South Carolina plus many trips all over Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. Grouse camps and fishing trips all over.
I didn't mean to write a book, but hope it shows each kind of unit can work, it dependes on your family.
05-12-2003, 03:16 PM
Sounds like you've had a lot of fun camping over the years Neapolis, and adjusted according to need.
We used to tent camp alot with the kids also. One spring, we camped on the Ausable. The 70 degree forecast turned into 32 degrees and rain during the night and one of the boys had the flu. I woke up shivering and damp since I was on a low side of the tent as a small stream ran under me and chromium woke up puked on. :eek: We liked the sounds of a pop-up.
Bought a used pop up and got a lot of use out of it. Time is limited for us so like to spend as much time enjoying the outdoors rather than packing for it(which consists of quite a lot for our size family.) It was nice but we decided to get a motorhome.
We keep it continually stocked so we just add the kids and the dog and we're off for our destination. I still enjoy sleeping under the stars so I would like to take the tent on occasion and pitch the tent and enjoy a night outside.
In fact, I tent camped on Friday during the thunderstorms and it was really a great light show!
05-12-2003, 03:33 PM
baby steps over 19 years
1. Borrowed tents
2. bought tents
3. bought pop-up
4. went without camping a few years
5. bought used 28' 5th wheel
Now we have a 2002 29' Nomad with dinette and couch slide. Rear lounge. And we keep it at a local campsite for the season. We've come a long way baby, and we are really pleased with our current situation.
05-12-2003, 09:27 PM
We have a pop-up for when the whole family goes, but if I'm just going or taking one or two other people, we take the tents, it's easier sometimes. If the weather is supposed to be bad, it's the camper again. For deer camp, it's camper time, but then again, there's usually at least 4 going for deer camp anyway.
05-14-2003, 07:28 AM
I guess Iíve gone the same way as many.
After realizing that motels and out of state vacations were too costly for a family of 5, we invested in a 10 x 14 tent and everything you need to go with it. This brought the family together in a big way. Tented it for about 6 years than bought a pop-up. Sure was nice. Still had the togetherness of a tent but on those damp cold days it sure was nice to come inside off the ground. After the kids grew and started leaving home, we bought a pick-up camper. This was fantastic for my wife and myself. Just shut off the ignition and we were all set up. We spent some very secluded times in that thing. Just pull off a fire trail in any one of the state forestís. No noise, no smoke from everyoneís campfire. Camp with the critters. Beautiful starlit nights.
Of course we got the bug again. Just like a boat you always need a bigger one. We went to the camper show with no intension of buying. Well guess what followed me home? A 27 ft. travel trailer. The guys hollered at me the first time I pulled it up deer hunting. I guarantee you this sure isnít deer camp. And when some say that isnít camping, I say, ďYep, isnít it nice.Ē I still miss the quite of the state forest, but the comfort of a travel trailer is great. Of course Iím looking at buying a tent again, or another pick-up camper. The travel trailer is nice but you canít pull it in the woods to well. Itís made to use in modern campgrounds. Thatís O.K. some of the time. But thereís nothing better than getting away from it all, and listing to the forest between the trees.
05-14-2003, 11:00 AM
Sounds like everyone has the sleeping arangements to there likeing.
We started out with a 14' Flintstone Trailer and over the years the mice gout out of control in it. So i give it away and we just purchased a 26' coachman with slide out so the new baby had somewhere more comfortable to be, And more relieable for the towing side.
We are injoying it very much.
She pulls the trailer and i pull the boat.
05-17-2003, 04:06 PM
Tent camped for about 25 years. The last couple started to think about getting a travel trailer, The ground is'nt as soft as it used to be. Oldest son (23) says I'm getting old........MAYBE but still enjoy camping
05-29-2003, 08:44 PM
We primarly use our pop-up(Coleman Cheyenne) but I'll take the tent if I'm going without the family. We bought the pop-up after my duaghter turned one. After one trip in the tent where the first night started with a downpour leading to a wet tent from little fingers touching the sides to a blown out diaper when we woke up in that morning we gave in immediately and bought a pop-up the next spring. It's really nice to have and really convenient, increased our camping outings 150% and next year may even be more!
05-29-2003, 11:05 PM
My son and I tent camp when we trout fish in my 20 year old JC Penney 3 man wall tent. It is awesome. The family has tent camped in an 8 man Eureka dome 2-room tent. Very roomy. Last weekend we took our first foray into the travel trailer world (rented) and loved it. Here is combo rig. Sand on my truck tires courtesy of Eckerman, MI.
05-30-2003, 11:36 AM
Mostly in a 12 x 14 cabin tent. I have also used a tent hammock for solo trips.
The ultimate comment getter though is the tee pee. Works real good for fires during inclement weather
06-02-2003, 10:57 PM
We have opted for a fifth wheel since this thread was started so we can pull the boat and not take two vehicles. Here is our new rig, it is a 2001. For once, depreciation worked in our favor, lol.
Nice Tee pee, fishandhunt! That is really cool!
06-03-2003, 09:51 AM
Now stay away from Sue. :eek:
You guys are a BAD Influence. :D
Keepin' up with the "Chromium's" is a full time job
06-03-2003, 10:19 AM
We have opted for a fifth wheel since this thread was started so we can pull the boat and not take two vehicles.
I'll look it up but I believe to pull a tandem rig (truck, trailer and boat) you are required to get a license endorsement of "D". Even as a private traveler. I also heard that this was cancelled and no longer needed so I have to research this. I'll let you know.
Also consider when you go out of state they may have regulations for such things. For that you need to contact the individual state you are heading for.
BTW, nice rig. I'm heading for the Motor Vehicle Code right now and will let you know.
06-03-2003, 11:12 AM
First, let me apologize for sending this post down another road. The forum moderator can move this if they feel the need. I found the indorsement and it is still in affect. You need an R indorsement from the state to tow the boat off the fifth wheel. I think it is just a quck written test and $10 but confirm this with the Secretary of State.
257.312i Pickup truck with fifth wheel assembly and attached semitrailer; R vehicle indorsement required; prohibition; written examination; fee; exemption.
(1) A person, before operating a pickup truck equipped with a fifth wheel assembly with an attached semitrailer designed for recreational living purposes and towing an additional trailer or semitrailer, shall procure an R vehicle indorsement on the operator's or chauffeur's license. An R vehicle indorsement shall not be issued to a person who is 17 years of age or less.
(2) Before a person is issued an original R vehicle indorsement on an operator's or chauffeur's license, the person shall pass a written examination which shall include subjects designed to cover knowledge needed to tow a double trailer combination. All examinations shall be administered as provided in this act.
(3) Every application for an R vehicle indorsement on an operator's or chauffeur's license for operation of a pickup truck as provided in this section shall be accompanied by a fee of $10.00 which shall be in addition to any other original or renewal operator or chauffeur license fee.
(4) A person who is licensed under this act to operate either a group A designated vehicle with a T vehicle indorsement or a group B designated vehicle with a T vehicle indorsement is exempt from the requirements of this section.
History: Add. 1990, Act 75, Imd. Eff. May 17, 1990 .
Remember too, no riding in the fifth wheel while in tow. I hope I didn't rain on your parade.:(
06-03-2003, 11:36 AM
Thanks for the info Gunrod, it's much appreciated. Great info and alot to consider when purchasing something new. John and I both planned on taking the double r endorsment test and getting the correct license. He will be doing most of the driving but I'd like to be able to help out when needed.
You are right about the different states having different regulations(How do you know so much about the law, lol?). In fact, we have a big out of state trip planned this summer and we will be taking 2 vehicles since we would be over the legal length in many of the states with the truck, fifth wheel, and boat. Michigan allows up to 65 feet and we're pretty close to that!:eek: Many states only allow 55 feet.
The fifth wheel still has it draw backs but it is going to be great for those weekend trips in Michigan where we used to spend 8 hours round trip driving seperate.;)
I have been cracking up about the riders in the fifth wheel while in tow. John and I had just discussed that and even if it was legal, it was not an option for us. Picture this....John and I riding in the truck, the boys in the 5th wheel. Arguement amongst them followed by, "I'm going to go tell Mom!" Watch that first step! Our truck is luckily a six seater!;)
06-03-2003, 12:11 PM
Glad you guys looked into it ahead of time. Most people don't then can't figure out what to do. Michigan is known as the home of the "11 wheel monster" for the size semi's we allow. That's why the 65" allowed. You probably won't find another state near that. I guess that's why our roads suck (large semi's) and most of our residents vacation within our borders (you can tow the house with you).
Have fun with the rig.:)
06-03-2003, 08:37 PM
I would love to build a tee pee. Those are too cool!
06-08-2003, 11:37 PM
I started out with my backpack and a bivi (sp) sack and the lab. Worked great for years. Now I'm up to 3 kids, two tents, a screen house, 5 areo beds, and more gadgits and kack than I can haul in a 3/4 ton conversion van. Looks more like a traveling circus at times. I still like the atmoshere of tents, but I see a trailer in the future!
06-09-2003, 01:14 PM
Like most, started out simple and working our way up.
I used to just bring a tarp and a sleeping bag and sleep next to the fire.
Then a pup tent.
Then I got married and bought a larger tent.
Then, had a child and got a larger tent.
Now we have three kids so we have a three-room tent plus a play tent.
We are thinking about a pop-up camper for next year.
06-09-2003, 02:21 PM
At the way youíre going, if you get a pop-up you should consider keeping that 3-room tent. LOL
06-20-2003, 09:41 PM
we camp with both our pop up or our tent,the boat goes camping with us no matter what,our rule is if were within in 100 miles of home we take both the popup and the boat,If were more then 100 miles we take just the tent an less were staying more thn a week then we take both.We have a screen a screen house with roll down flaps were she sets up her kitchen ,complete with hot water,the rule on the screen house we have to be staying longer then 3 days.
06-26-2003, 11:00 PM
Yeah baby......as I said, we wanted to sell the pop-up and finally did it. Went last night to pick up the new travel trailer. It's a Coachmen and it's 26 foot. Used but, in beautiful shape. Tomorrow starts my annual tubing/camping trip so it will be our first trip with the new rig......I can't wait! Anyone that wants to join us is welcome. We're at Rifle River AAA campground in Sterling. Section K (group lot) is reserved. Saturday at 12:30 we're tubing and then a great cookout! :D
06-27-2003, 07:13 AM
We tent camp all the way. My sister and I used to camp a week every year in a really small tent. When I had my son we got a two room tent, eleven years later it is still holding up. I do have a small two man (two girl!) for times when mom just has to run away!!!!
I think I will always tent camp. I have a small place in the middle of the woods with a mobile home on it so a camper isn't really getting away enough for me!
07-09-2003, 09:40 PM
Poly tarp and parachute cord.
David G Duncan
07-26-2003, 03:30 PM
Moving up from a sheet of plastic and a blanket to a indian tipi.
07-27-2003, 12:55 PM
2004 30' Terry with a 16 foot slide out....The boss (wife;) ) calls it camping I call it a moving apartment, and 1shot calls it bow hunting camp....:D I'm with him.... Pulling toy is a 2003 Ford F-350 with a V-10 4x4.
07-28-2003, 08:07 AM
Awesome rig, both truck and trailer. If you don't mind can you let me know where you got the Terry? I am casually looking around at travel trailers, and not sure where the most honest RV dealer is. I have a list of places people have told me *not* to go.
What floor plan is your Terry? Wife and I are thinking something with bunks for the two kids. What are a few important things you have learned in buying your RV?
07-28-2003, 08:09 AM
After this weekend of camping near TC, i will describe my camping equipment as WET! :( :( :(
07-28-2003, 08:25 AM
With just the wife and I 90% of the time we or I should say she opted for the larger bathroom area, with a corner shower and a huge closet, I'll have to check the sheet to get the number of the layout for you. I sent you a pm. but we got our last two rigs from Walt Micheals in Belleville, they have been outstanding in helping us out in any way possible. We traded in our 5th wheel that we only had for 7months, it was up in Mt Pleasant at a friends house, not only did they give us a good price for our trade, they went and picked it up for me at no charge. Not like the thing was just down the street or something...:)
07-28-2003, 09:56 AM
Kroppe, our fifth wheel has bunks and they work out great for the kids. It's nice to not have to break down the table and fold out the couch each night.
07-28-2003, 10:05 AM
Talk about being wet.
Camped in Quebec all last week and it rained all day and night. However I will have to say my 1978 Apache Mesa pop up did awesome. You can not beat having all hard sides as aposed to canvas in a continual rain. we stayed very dry inside
07-29-2003, 06:32 AM
It's not what you use, it's where you put it.;)
Like most of you, we (the wife and I) started off Tenting. We were big time into Backpacking. We had a Sierra Designs Glacier (which was very high tech at the time). We used to laugh at the people that 'Car Camped'. Then kids came and we too started to 'Car Camp' with a large Dome tent. Then it was an Apache Hard-sided Pop-up. I still donít understand why no one else builds a hard-side Pop-up. That was an awesome camper that was used many times in the Winter and was very comfortable. We just plain wore the thing out. Now it's a 2004 32' 5'ver with a 2003 GMC 2500HD Duramax/Allison Crew Cab Long Box as the T.V. Yep, really roughing it now eh? (lol).
In regards to some previous posts, there is a great site for State-by-State regs: http://www.wecamp2.com/size.html . If you look on the left margin, under State RV Information, you can find some additional info. It was stated in a previous post that you cannot ride in the trailer, which is not true. I don't recommend it, in fact I highly discourage it, but it is legal.
Another great source of info is www.rv.net. Very informative site.
09-16-2003, 08:37 AM
Started out years ago in boyscouts with the old canvas tents with no floor. Then moved up to 2 person dome tent. Then to a pop-up camper. This year we bought a boat, so we went out and bought a large 3 room cabin tent and an aero bed. I will still use the pop-up in fall to deer hunt, but during the summer my wife won't leave the house without the boat, so the camper stays home.
Queen of the Forest
10-26-2003, 07:25 PM
Tent camper here. My parents got us a HUGE tent a few years ago, it's just perfect for me, my two kids and the dog. The kids LOVE it! As long as I have my ari mattress I'm HAPPY, the hard ground just dosen't agree with my back anymore :( Just have to remember to put that darn rain flap on before you head out for the day though!! :eek:
I had thought about going the pop-up route, but I like the thought that ALL our camping gear, tools, jack and spare for the bronco can all fit in the back of the bronco and still have room for me, the kids and the dog. The less we take the better I like it. Besides, a pop-up is just two more tires you have to worry about going flat. :p
10-26-2003, 10:04 PM
Lance camper on an F350 4x4 (6x6?) dually.
10-26-2003, 10:08 PM
The wife and I graduated to step (3) Sarge, Bought our first pop up last year. Love it, easy to breakdown and I can get it into smaller sites in the rustic campgrouds.
11-29-2003, 08:42 PM
The wife and I drove this home a week ago, T31BH Cardinal travel trailer. 2 bunks in the back for the kids, slide out for sofa/dinette and some other nice standard features, included heated and enclosed holding tanks. Our first trip is to the Florida Keys between Christmas and New Year.
Pulling this rig with the 6.0 Powerstroke diesel gets me about 11mpg doing 70-75mph on the highway.
For weekend trout fishing, my son and I will probably stick to the 30 year old JC Penney tent, but upgrade to some low-profile cots. Someone else mentioned that the ground gets harder every year; I'll have to agree with that! ;)
11-29-2003, 10:42 PM
I'd advise you not to tow at 70-75 mph.
65 is plenty fast enough when towing or driving a big rig. It takes a long time to stop when you're towing, and gusts of wind or sudden maneuvers do strange, dangerous and expensive things to trailers and tow vehicles alike.
07-28-2004, 07:46 PM
Tent camper here, and will always be. I love it and the girlfriend does too so that makes the time even more enjoyable.
08-02-2004, 03:03 PM
I can't vote because my type of camping isn't listed. I bought a 2003 Blazer last year so I just sleep in the back of that. All I need is a sleeping bag and I can camp wherever possible and is comfortable. Even if it's in a rest stop!
However, if I am camping more tehn 2 nights(which usually doesn't happen) I might bring the test along unless I am up in college.
Well, seeing how this thread is resurrected, I thought I'd list my stuff. Been camping for someteen years now, and there's a few things you learn to not like about tents. First and foremost is the wet and dampness. That's why I picked this up:
It's a Kelty Mantra 7, and I couldn't be happier. The tent itself is very light and is always dry. There is a full coverage fly that protects the tent and is what sheds the water and collects the dew. All clothing and sleeping stuff is in there, along with the lugable lou that sits in the vestibule. Then, you gotta have somewhere to congregate, right? Well, that's done in here:
This isn't just any screen tent. 2 sides are permanently screened with rollup sides. The other 2 sides are zippered screens, with zippered sides. You can lower and open the sides as the sunlight dictates. We had just enough breeze at MIS yesterday afternoon, that we could open the north and south end, with the west end covered. Shade and breeze during sunny times and full coverage during storms. But wait, there's more! You can't go camping without being able to shower, right? Well, here's the answer:
(Model not included)
We spend 3 weekends at MIS and on most years we spend several weekends somewhere up north (Oscoda). While the shower isn't brought on the up north weekends, it sure is nice to have at places where there's a line for the facilities, not to mention being herded up like cattle in a semi-truck shower.
All the conveniences of home. If, and that's a BIG IF, we ever decided to purchase something other than a tent, it'd have to have at least as much space as what we have now, and would have to have all solid walls. (ie. no popup) Our biggest inconvenience is the amount of generator noise at the track. Getting into a popup does not solve that problem.
08-11-2004, 04:12 PM
I've been tent camping my whole life, just got back from a week at Bond Falls last week, tent camping is great, but the older I get I start to wonder. Don't mind setting up but I'm really starting to hate taking down camp.
Now a trailer or a 5th wheel won't work for me and in the future I am considering a pickup camper. See I always got to be towing something either a boat, utility trailer w/atv or something. A motorhome is out of the question.
This is some pic's of camp last week. It definatly helps to be married to a woman that dosen't mind rustic camping :D
Front view of the campsite, this 12x14 light canvas wall tent was purchased from Gander mtn, almost 20 years ago everything is still in great shape but this last trip the plastic zipper on the screen won't stay together & will need replacement.
Side view of camp, we attach a dining canopy to the front with a picnic table under the center, works out great. I have set this rig up on Thanksgiving night in the dark with 4" of snow on the ground.
View from the other side
Ahhh !!! the shower - solar shower that is ! If the sun don't shine, just heat some up on the stove & pour it in. I love rustic camping but after a few days, your hair is greasy, your back itches, and your skivies stick like no tomorrow.
Ah heck my as well through a shot in of the view from camp to the boat.
The closest neighboring campsite was probably 300 yards away and across this part of the lake.
Weve got this down pat, 4 major plastic totes. One for the kitchen, one for the misc stuff, stove, ropes, propane cyl, solar shower, etc, another for airmattreses & pump stuff and another just for plastic tarps as you never know what kind of weather your going to have.
09-20-2004, 11:16 AM
I have camped in a tent, pop-trailer, the back of the truck. I now own a 27' trailer trailer. We absolutly love it. I take the wife and kid during the spring and summer on trips and then it transformed into deer camp. Yeh, Yeh I know it's not a old school deer camp, but we enjoy it and not to many of my hunting partners seem to complain either. lol
09-28-2004, 05:42 PM
Reading through these posts I have heard several people speaking highly of the hard sided pop up. With a growing family our last tent camping trip did not go so smooth so I am considering buying a popup. Does anyone have any input as far as a current model hard sided pop up?
09-28-2004, 06:55 PM
As a youngster the family always went camping in a pop-up camper with canvas sides. During my teen years I started tent camping. In my early 30's I "camped" in a few 5th Wheels & RV's. While convenient to setup and pack up, thereís something about bringing along a microwave, refrigerator, satellite dish or a/c unit that just doesnít feel like camping. I really enjoy the tent camping experience, especially during Deer Camp. Although I might split the difference and pick up a pop-up camperÖone of these days.
10-03-2004, 02:18 PM
I owned an Apache Mesa pop up which is all hard sides. It was a great camper, stayed super dry and weather tight.
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