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Old 09-12-2008, 02:41 PM   #1
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Bay Area, CA fulltime parking space ideas ?

Hey Y'all,

I'm actually posting for a friend, who is looking to go from apartment living to full timing in an Airstream (or houseboat). She'd like to settle down anywhere in the Bay Area and possibly Central Coast of California, depending on where she can park & live in her Airstream.

Also, has anyone lived in a houseboat as well as an Airstream full time who
can advise on the pros and cons of each?

There's a bit of a time crunch, so any suggestions or tips are so very appreciated.

Thanks so much!
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Old 09-12-2008, 06:48 PM   #2
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Due to real estate costs and availability, the central coast will be much cheaper and have many more options.
Central coast = $$$
Bay area = $$$$$$
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Old 09-12-2008, 07:17 PM   #3
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Reason #52:

Airstreams can do a lot of annoying things, but I've never seen one sink...
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Old 09-12-2008, 07:44 PM   #4
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Woodalls is a website for locating and getting information on RV parks. A little scouting there will lead to parks with long term parking and prices.
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Old 09-13-2008, 06:16 PM   #5
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Thanks for the responses. Woodalls is a great resource, I'll pass it on to her
and will check it out for myself too.

True, I've never seen an Airstream sink either!

Well, I have told my friend what my vote is in the Airstream vs houseboat
question, but she knows I'm a bit biased .

Thanks again.
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Old 09-14-2008, 12:38 AM   #6
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Quote:
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Reason #52:

Airstreams can do a lot of annoying things, but I've never seen one sink...
Reason #52a:
They do leak.............sorry.

Neil.
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Old 09-14-2008, 12:40 AM   #7
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Kristiana!

Hey, neighbor, we haven't seen you in a while.
Neil.
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Old 09-14-2008, 11:14 PM   #8
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El Do Co !

Hey Neil (and Lynn),

Good to hear from you. Are you two going to the Coloma Resort rally next month? It's being hosted by the Tin Can Tourists. Always a good time.
Hope to see you there...

Kristiana
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Old 09-15-2008, 12:30 AM   #9
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A/S vs houseboat

Hi Kristiana!
I bought one of your "little dude" necklaces at the April Coloma rally.

We've lived full time on a boat as well as our AS, so probably have a unique perspective on both lifestyles.

Both have their ups & downs - it's really great to wake up in the morning on the water - or even being lulled to sleep at night to the gentle motion of the boat floating in the water. But, in high winds, even the stoutest of boats or houseboats will rock & roll. Plus, in many marinas, you have to listen all night to the rattling of the halyards on those pesky sailboats!

We've been in some strong wind storms in the AS - slept well but heard complaints from the 5th wheelers & motor homers next morning that they thought they were going to blow over.

Generally, the marine environment is harsh on anything that floats in the water, hence more upkeep than with a trailer - metals corrode easier, woods weather faster. A friend says that once you finish the maintenance on one end of the boat, you have to go back to the other end & start over! Yes, trailers do require maintenance but, except for the running gear, it's not as much $$$ or as intensive as a boat.

The last time we looked at moorage in the Bay area, it was around $10 per foot - RV parks will generally charge for the site (some add a surcharge for slides or 50 amp power) so, houseboat moorage may be more than a similar trailer site. Having said that, the houseboat may afford more living space, especially if it's a double decker!

Here's a topic that may be overlooked - sewage. Since there is zero tolerance for sewage discharge in coastal waters, any houseboat would have to be "attached" to shore plumbing or regular pump outs arranged. This could amount to an added cost. This problem is handled by any RV site with full hookups.

Also, by design, your car/bike is always close to your RV site for unloading groceries, laundry, etc. Unless you can moor very close to shore, there's that long walk down the dock to your home. If something falls out of your bag on the way to the boat, it's usually some item that doesn't float!

Houseboats tend to be damper inside as well - the weather can be damp & foggy along the central coast. If I were going to live on a boat/houseboat in the bay area, I'd look along the east bay or even up the Delta (less expensive!). These areas are less prone to storms & fog than adjacent to the ocean.

Whatever your friend decides, both lifestyles offer their pleasures and really force one to be a minimalist!

Cheers

Carolyn
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Old 09-15-2008, 01:14 AM   #10
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How Central is the coast?

There aen't many reasonable places to stay near the beach between Marin County and San Simeon.. There are spots in Redwood City on Peninsula and in LArkspur area neat entrance to San Rafael Bridge... There are a number of Marina's with RV parking in Delta area between SFO and Sacramento, which are warmer and less foggy than coast.. Not sure if friend is going to try and commute into work or work from Airstream.. Houseboats very limited in SF Bay Area, due to limits on sewage, to a few marina's in Sausalito area and Alameda Estuary...
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Old 09-15-2008, 12:00 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by kristiana View Post
Hey Neil (and Lynn),

Good to hear from you. Are you two going to the Coloma Resort rally next month? It's being hosted by the Tin Can Tourists. Always a good time.
Hope to see you there...

Kristiana
Hi; We attended one 2 years ago there (what fun - great people) but this time it's Jackson Rancheria on the same weekend. Sorry for the 'hijack'.
Neil.
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Old 09-22-2008, 04:28 PM   #12
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she decided on...

WOW! Carolyn, thank you so much for that extensive post on the pros and cons of Airstream -vs- houseboat living! You thought of absolutely everything and I really
appreciate you taking the time to lay it all out .

(You also gave me a good laugh about your "little dude" necklace ).

Thank you to you as well, Condoluminum for the info on Bay Area parking and houseboat spots.

Well... the jury is in... my friend went with ... a houseboat.
(I know, I know, but be nice, she's following this post!)

She came across a great boat and everything just fell into place.

I'm grateful to have the knowledgeable feedback from you guys, she and I really appreciate your posts.

I wish her all the best on her new adventure. She still has Airstream living in her heart, but it will probably be further in her future.

Thanks again.

P.S. Neil, maybe I'll see y'all at the spring Coloma rally then!
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Old 09-22-2008, 10:29 PM   #13
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P.S. Neil, maybe I'll see y'all at the spring Coloma rally then!
I have a high school buddy who lives in Grass Valley. He is 'jealous' of our classic car-vintage trailer combo and wants to find a vintage trailer to tow with his '68 Oldsmobile. I am going to send him and his wife over to the Coloma Rally so he can look/see and talk to some of you. He is not sure which make trailer he would like to look for. If he decides to go I will have him say hello to you.
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Old 12-16-2008, 07:59 PM   #14
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I keep my trailer in San Jose (convenient to the airport), not as scenic as a marina but the hookups, parking, and access to shopping/etc make it easy.

I considered a boat for the time I spend in the Bay Area but liveaboard moorage is difficult to find and there tend to be conditions (like using your boat as a boat) to consider as well.

Good Luck.
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