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The crackling campfire, the serenading orchestra of crickets and frogs, a night sky twinkling with seemingly infinite possibilities… Camping in the great outdoors is chock-full of experiences worthy of romanticizing. Sometimes, though, when introducing friends or children to camping, a weekend of glamping may be just the way to keep some creature comforts of home at the campsite. For some, the love affair wears off pretty quickly once the bugs come out, the reality of sleeping on the hard, cold ground kicks in, and mother nature reminds us that she can be uncomfortably unpredictable. There’s no better way to revel in the comfortable side of camping than living the RV life.
As BACKPACKER’s resident road warrior, here are my top five reasons to consider an RV on your next outdoor adventure:
Start fresh, get dirty, repeat
An RV as a basecamp motivates adventure, especially adventures that come with dirt under your fingernails. The forecast was delightful. The reality, not so much. When the bugs begin their relentless hunt, the wind starts kicking dust, or that ominous cloud’s bottom drops out you’re not running for the shelter of a cold, wet tent. On the contrary, your destination is a climate-controlled RV refuge to call home. You set the temp, decide when it’s time for a shower and there’s no greasy bug spray to scrub off. Proudly tackle those muddy trails and embrace those bike tires throwing rooster tails. The RVer’s mantra: bring it on! Getting filthy dirty is way more fun when you know there’s a refreshing (and clean) shower and bathroom at basecamp. You won’t need twelve quarters for three minutes of lukewarm (at best) water and you can leave those shower sandals at home because unlike that park’s public facilities, you know the last time someone cleaned the floors of your private RV shower.
Hot meals and cold beverages
After a full day hiking, biking, climbing, paddling, casting, or just lounging around camp, very few things provide more comfort at the end of an adventure packed day like a hot, homecooked meal. Having the complete kitchen set-up built into your RV turns meal prep into a breeze. With multiple burner stoves, a microwave and refrigeration, your culinary capabilities are unlimited. Oh, and that refrigeration part sure does make your fire-side tale of the “massive” fish that got away (a.k.a. 6-inch brookie who didn’t take the hook) far more enjoyable with a cold beverage in your hand. RVs enable you to keep groceries cold for a week-long trip, so perishables will stay fresh with little effort.
Sleep Like a Baby
Let’s be honest, a good night’s sleep can make all the difference. As a lifelong backpacker, I love a night in the tent as much as anyone. I think we can all agree that waking in a warm, climate-controlled and dew-free RV on a comfortable bed has its benefits, not the least of which is eliminating the need to psych yourself up before unzipping your bag and tackling the day. This is the epitome of camp comfort. Waking up refreshed guarantees another great day on the trail.
Ease your mind
Freeing your mind from security worries is the RVer’s key to around the clock comfort. Living behind the locked doors of your hard-sided home away from home allows you to sleep soundly through the night. Also, knowing that your bikes, boats and other high dollar outdoor gear selections are safely stowed beyond that locked door instead of being stashed behind a few thin nylon walls and a two-way zipper allows days away from camp to be full of stress-free adventure.