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Old 06-24-2007, 09:07 PM   #1
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purplesuebug
Winter Camping

Okay, I may be rushing things a little but we do most of our camping off season and Sue is planning our fall and winter trips already. The question I have is.............How cold can we go??!! As you may know, we are new to this TT stuff, we had a pop-up before. Since it had no toilet or water, we could go and go and go. I'm sure we can handle below freezing at night (or can we) as long as it warms during the day.............I do know I dO NOT want busted pipes or worse. Any help would be greatly appreciated.............Thanks,M&S
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Old 06-25-2007, 05:55 AM   #2
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The coldest we've been camping in is 40 during the day and 26 at night. I don't think it stayed below freezing for more than a couple of hours at night. The frist night we did nothing to prepare because it wasn't supposed to get below freezing....it did though and our outdoor hose was frozen. No other problems. I guess the heat being on inside kept everything else warm enough to not freeze. The next night we left the cabinet doors open so the heat would go in them. We disconnected and drained the water hose at night (be sure to fill your coffee pot with water the night before!) I think DH opened the low point drain, but am not sure. We didn't have any problems staying warm, and we were using a little electric space heater. We do have those awsome insulating day/night shades though. In the morning as soon as I opened them I could really feel a difference in the inside temperature. It warmed up to above freezing during the day. I have pictures of the QUEtSE in the snow we woke up to on Easter morning - now that was awsome. But, when I try to create an album and post them it tells me they are too big
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Old 06-25-2007, 06:45 AM   #3
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Pam,
Thanks for the info and for the pictures..............I just went into Adobe Photo Shop (I think any photo editor wll work) and used the resize button. In fact, I just looked at Microsoft Photo Editor and under the image button, select resize. Under units, choose pixels. I changed the largest (either height or width) to no greater than 1500 pixels but You can make the picture any size you want here. The other (height or width) will change automatically to maintain the correct proportions.Just be sure to save it by another name or you will loose the original size. Then you should be able to upload. If you need any help, let me know.
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Old 06-25-2007, 07:39 AM   #4
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I have the pics on Kodak EasyShare and can't for the life of me figure out how to share
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Old 06-25-2007, 08:25 AM   #5
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Sorry.............no experience there. Marshall
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Old 06-25-2007, 10:18 AM   #6
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Marshall,

I'm don't have a lot of cold weather experience, but I have heard a good tip. The only below-freezing experience I've had was when we were completely self-contained.

The tip is to open up a bathroom faucet at night (or kitchen depending on if the water bothers you), cold water of course. This keeps the water in your hose outside moving, so it won't freeze. That way, when you get up in the morning, you don't have to run out to hook up the hose. I suppose you'd want to keep the faucet running during the day too if the temps never go above freezing. If the outside temp goes really cold, let's say around zero or so, it would be a good idea to pull the hose in regardless.

Other than water, your coach is designed for four season use. If you really want to use it in the middle of winter, you could just keep the coach winterized and utilize the park facilities, assuming they are available. Most likely, if you camp in places where the temps are that low, the park will not even have water available. They will just shut it off for the winter and you are responsible for filling your fresh tank from a central spigot or using their facilities.

Jon
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Old 06-25-2007, 10:37 AM   #7
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Cold Weather Camping

Cold weather is a relative thing. In our experience the external hose is the most sensitive element to freezing. For shorterm stays we disconnect the hose at night. For longer term stays we carry electric heat tape for the hose and some foam pipe insulation.

Many people carry a small electric heater for internal heating but we have found that it's not the same as running the propane heater. On many rigs the propane heater uses ducting to move the hot air and this heats areas that the electric heater never reaches.

Many people add electric heating elements to their waste tanks, the flat kind that glue on. If I were at a full hook up site I would leave my tank drain valves open so the external drain could not totally fill and freeze. As well I make sure the sewer pipe was sloped so it doesn't fill anywere and freeze.

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Old 06-25-2007, 01:41 PM   #8
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Thanks for asking this question. I am returning to the states next weekend to set up our T2363 for an extended stay of 14 months, right through the midwest winter. I am always looking for tips. I am cold sensitive!

Here are a couple of things I am planning on doing in anticipation of sub-zero weather at some point.

Hold tank heaters with both 12 volt and 120 volt elements.
A backup Yamaha generator (2400) able to run an electic heater in an emergency.
Spare propane in the back of the pickup truck. My bottles on the trailer are 30 pounds each. Probably a couple more in the pickup, just in case...
Electric blanket
Putting shrink plastic over windows.
Insulating the doors somehow.
Putting carpeting down throughout the trailer

I wintered in Chicago about 30 years in a slip in camper. Frost formed a half inch thick on the inside wall by our bed. But, because of the limited area, we could keep the unit warm -- you just didn't get close to the wall. Until the single propane bottle ran out, that is! We used a porta pottie and a five gallon water jug and didn't use the units water system.

If anyone is interested, I might post pictures and I made the mods.


Best wishes.
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Old 06-25-2007, 02:59 PM   #9
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niteowl, Just curious - Are your speaking engagements about your missionary work and are they open to the public?
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Old 06-25-2007, 03:55 PM   #10
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Yes, we will be presenting the missionary work we are doing in Africa. Definately open to the public. (I never experienced a church that turned a visitor away) If it works out for our paths to cross, wonderful. We will be in PA in the fall. I will be posting our speaking schedule at some time soon on our website. It is sore need of updating... (I am new to "posting" and don't know the rules on this but here it is: www.joyintheharvest.com I ask for forgiveness if I made a mistake -- sometimes forgiveness is easier to get than permission) Love to meet you in person. Please identify yourself as a Sunline owner!! That will make you stand out!

I just love this website. The people here are all kind and I never noticed any nastiness you sometimes see elsewhere. Really is an enjoyable site. I think only the nicest people camp in Sunlines!

Thanks for asking.
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Old 06-25-2007, 04:13 PM   #11
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Lowell,

You did it perfectly! There are two ways to post a link: First, you can just type the link in like you did (www.joyintheharvest.com), which is what most people do, and second, you can
make text link you to a website

The second choice is obviously a lot more complicated, but it's helpful if there's a really long link, such as a specific item on a specific page of a website.

Jon
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1997 T-2653 Blue Denim, #5471
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Old 06-25-2007, 09:33 PM   #12
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Perhaps you might want to think about a radiant (oil- filled) heater as well. In that way, it warms the surface of floors wall etc., instead of just making the air warm.
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Old 06-25-2007, 10:13 PM   #13
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We have a little experience in camping in the winter.

The one thing we found is, you're going to drain your batteries if you're trying to boondock and still use your propane heat. Between the tank heaters and the propane heater running, our four batteries would only run for one full day without the sun to recharge our house batteries. This was in 20 degree weather in the daytime.


If you're staying at a spot that you can be plugged in to electric and water, use a ceramic heater or two inside the caoch to save propane, and unhook the city water hook-up at night or your incoming line will freeze. We learned this the hard way.

If you dont have tank heaters, then I wouldnt really recommend winter camping unless you dont plan on using the water. Another thing we found out the hard way, was Electric Blankets are next to impossible unless you're hooked up to a strong 30amp current. We popped a 30 amp fuse one night with a electric blanket when the volt meter was a little low to start with. A call to our installers and we found out that electric balnkets are almost as strong as teh micorwave in power consumption.

Winter camping isnt fun, and although we did it when we needed to, it makes for a short night of sleep. The only thing I'd recommend is lots of Bourbon and a good shuggle partner.

Pat
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Old 06-25-2007, 10:37 PM   #14
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OKAY............Looks like we'll be heading south for the winter trips and leave New England and the Dakotas for spring and fall. Thanks to all for the great advice. Pat, I agree, winter camping is no fun.........I froze my hair to the side of the tent one night in the pop-up............but that one morning you wake up to find a fresh layer of snow with the sunshine sparkling on the surface makes it all worthwhile. M&S
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