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Old 05-28-2008, 10:04 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Eklund
I am hearing from friends with trailers that the summer potential of $4.00 a gallon for gasoline is going to put them in their yards, raking the grass and pulling weeds...

There ARE benefits from higher gasoline prices:

(1) Fewer people on the highways.
(2) More deals at RV Parks with fewer customers
(3) More spaces to be found in popular National Forest camp grounds
(4) National Park traffic will be reduced... at first
(5) Nobody camped on BLM or National Forest "Rockdocking" country

Savings using your Airstream:

(1) No hotel or motel expenses
(2) No car rental expenses and GASOLINE
(3) No airplane tickets and surcharges, standing in lines
(4) No boarding for your pets
(5) No home air conditioning, cooking, water or other utility use
(6) No depreciation of your AS just sitting at the storage park

When you calculate your expenses of traveling without a trailer and with a trailer, you will be surprised at the savings using your trailer. I have learned several excellent points for my Rockdocking back country adventures.

Rockdocking Savings:


(2) Do NOT haul a full fresh water tank until near destination
I have noticed a significant reduction in traffic in our area. Our small town used to be bumper 2 bumper at 5:00 on a weekday, not any more. I think you are not seeing teenagers out joy riding, folks out for a cruise, etc. While I am fortunate to bike to work most days, there are very few cars on the road when I head home from the office… (Kind of nice). We headed up North last weekend (New Hampshire) and I have to say, there was very little traffic on the highways also. So I guess there are some benefits to the increased cost of fuel.
It seems like Folks are booking longer stays at campgrounds rather than wandering around. I also have some friends that have booked “seasonal” sites (not for us…). Maybe next year we will pick a couple of favorite spots and stay for a week at each rather than the lengthy exploratory trips we do now…
When it costs me over $100 for a tank of diesel, it gets my attention. We are not changing any plans for this year, but next year? Who knows…at some point it is just not feasible to continue. I never thought we would reach that point in my lifetime. We have dreams of retiring early and setting out for months at a time on the road; will we still be able to do that? Not at $7-$8-$10 a gallon….it would be less expensive to get a hybrid and stay in hotels (yikes!). Let’s hope this all settles down soon, and we don’t have to worry too much about this…

I do have a question, when on the road how do you “fill your fresh tank closer to your destination”?
I have wondered about this…we usually travel with a full tank, what are likely places to fill up safely?
Many of the State parks, NF land, etc., have water available, but what does on do otherwise?

Thanx, Bill
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Old 05-28-2008, 10:31 AM   #16
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We'll be doing at least a weekend a month to area (within 150 miles) locations this year. I think the further we go away from the city, the less crowded it will be. Still planning a long trip in July. The higher fuel prices add to the cost of the trip, but it's only a few more dollars, really, and I'm now paying $5/gallon for diesel.
Another positive note on the few prices is that I've noticed that the big trucks have slowed way down. Good thing because I have, too!
We stayed home over Memorial Day to avoid crowds. I wonder if those who went out saw any reduction in the number of people who were camping?
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Old 05-28-2008, 01:02 PM   #17
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Potable Water on the Road

I have started to list gas stations and park offices in my gasoline log where I can fill my fresh water tank, while traveling. When we pull into a town to refuel, we ask if we can fill our fresh water tank. No water... next station. The only town I have had difficulty filling the fresh water tank was Payson, Arizona. I also plan never to go through the town again... They are conserving water, so tourists are part of their water problem, apparently.

If you are going to be away from civilization for a week or more, I have one important tip to pass on to you. When you fill your fresh water tank, bleed the air from the cold AND hot water lines. The big surprise will be the fresh water tank not taking any more water and it splashes out from the filler entry. You think you have "topped off the fresh water"... wrong! The HOT WATER tank will take another five to six gallons to prime the tank and lines. I run water from the tap into a plastic wash basin and toss the bled water into the grass or bush nearby. May as well get the old stale water flushed from the last trip, while you are priming the system!

Flying J truck stops seem to offer water at their auto and truck pumping stations. They often have RV dumps at no charge also. Rock Springs, Wyoming Flying J along I-80 is always a stop for us while in the SW Wyoming area. National Forest ranger offices have great water. BLM offices will have water. Chaco Canyon National Historical Park has excellent water at no charge. Once you get the hang of asking for fresh water, the clerks are surprised that someone wants fresh water. I tell them I need up to 30 gallons, so they do not think I have a tanker truck outside needing 1000 gallons. I then will buy ice, soft drinks, a newspaper from these stations as well.
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Old 05-29-2008, 07:38 AM   #18
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1989 25' Excella
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Eklund
I have started to list gas stations and park offices in my gasoline log where I can fill my fresh water tank, while traveling. When we pull into a town to refuel, we ask if we can fill our fresh water tank. No water... next station. The only town I have had difficulty filling the fresh water tank was Payson, Arizona. I also plan never to go through the town again... They are conserving water, so tourists are part of their water problem, apparently.

If you are going to be away from civilization for a week or more, I have one important tip to pass on to you. When you fill your fresh water tank, bleed the air from the cold AND hot water lines. The big surprise will be the fresh water tank not taking any more water and it splashes out from the filler entry. You think you have "topped off the fresh water"... wrong! The HOT WATER tank will take another five to six gallons to prime the tank and lines. I run water from the tap into a plastic wash basin and toss the bled water into the grass or bush nearby. May as well get the old stale water flushed from the last trip, while you are priming the system!

Flying J truck stops seem to offer water at their auto and truck pumping stations. They often have RV dumps at no charge also. Rock Springs, Wyoming Flying J along I-80 is always a stop for us while in the SW Wyoming area. National Forest ranger offices have great water. BLM offices will have water. Chaco Canyon National Historical Park has excellent water at no charge. Once you get the hang of asking for fresh water, the clerks are surprised that someone wants fresh water. I tell them I need up to 30 gallons, so they do not think I have a tanker truck outside needing 1000 gallons. I then will buy ice, soft drinks, a newspaper from these stations as well.
Thanx Ray, maybe I will lighten my load, save some fuel, and starting asking for water closer to our destination!

Thanx again, Bill
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Old 05-29-2008, 08:11 AM   #19
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Ray Eklund: Couldn't agree more, except under rockdocking where you say driving UP costs and driving DOWN saves. Unfortunately, if we drive DOWN on the way out we have to drive UP on the way back and visa versa. The one is just a function of the other!
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Old 05-29-2008, 09:54 AM   #20
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I agree. Airstreaming is still a good deal... We just got back from 7 nights in Yosemite. Counting gasoline and the campsite fee, we spent $50 a night, for a campsite right in Yosemite Valley. Beat that any other way! I spent $200 for gas and $140 for 7 nights of camping... not bad at all.
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Old 05-29-2008, 04:52 PM   #21
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This last trip gave me some better gas mileage statistics to share:
State Line, NV/UT on Hwy. 50/6 (Great Basin National Park/Lehmna Caves)
8.2mpg to the Lehman Cave building, campsite at $12 per night and to gas station at Baker, NV (cheaper than State Line). 29 miles/3.5 gallons

Crossing Rocky Mountains from Glenwood Springs, CO on I-70 East to Littleton, CO. 134 miles/11.5 gallons- 12.1mpg

Grand Junction, CO to Glenwood Springs, CO on I-70 going East. 88 miles/6.1 gallons- 14.4mpg.

With 3/4 fresh water, food and equipment.

Why some short stops... Wife needs to stop, now. Not sure where we will be going in the next hour and similar reasons. I would feel safe that the range of 10 to 14 miles per gallon pulling a full load is rather consistent. Off road on a gravel, steep and needing bushes cut back to travel while engine is idling will be in the 8 to 9mpg. So topping off before you get off the road is a MUST DO.
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Old 06-22-2008, 10:46 PM   #22
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Nebraska & Wyoming Gasoline

Returning today from a short back country camping trip I found gasoline in Cheyenne, Wyoming, today, June 22nd at $3.81 at Exxon and at the Lusk, Wyoming Outpost Truck Stop at $3.91 for Regular Unleaded. The price at the Outpost Truck Stop was less expensive than the Fresh Start gas station in Lusk, which is at a corner of two highways. And considering they were OUT OF ALL GRADES OF GASOLINE. A dozen or more bikers returning from an early to Sturgis, SD biker holiday were not too happy, nor the traffic backed up waiting to pull into the station and not knowing the crowd did not know what to do.

On the south side of Lusk there is a truck stop, so if you find yourself in the same situation, you now know where to go. If both stations are out of fuel and you are riding the bottom of your tank, just park, take a break and have a rest! Lusk, Wyoming is a cross road for Sturgis, SD biker traffic, so just park in town near the Exxon on the corner of Highways 20 and 85 for an interesting viewing of an annual migration... Look at is as some kind of bird watching experience. The kids will love it!

Pulling the 23 foot Safari with the 2008 Tundra we averaged a low of 10.5 miles per gallon, fully loaded with water for Rockdocking the Badlands to a high mileage return home from Cheyenne, WY at 12.8 mpg on this trip. Since we decided to get home early from SE Wyoming we ate dinner in Cheyenne while we drained the fresh water tank... and gained a bit on fuel mileage traveling at 65 to 70 mph on Interstate 25. I might have done better by keeping around 60 mph, but the traffic was light and roads in perfect condition... what can I say?

Crawford, Nebraska in the Nebraska Panhandle had Regular for $3.99 on June 14th and on a June 18th topping off the tank, $4.09. The smaller towns you WILL pay more, so top off before you get off the beaten path in this part of the country.
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Old 06-23-2008, 08:38 AM   #23
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Saudi Arabia just announced a third increase in production this year. Now with the Chinese increasing prices for domestic use, that volume will be down. Maybe both of these countries finally realized something. THEY NEED US!!
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