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Old 12-21-2010, 07:54 PM   #1
itch'n to road trip
 
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Location: North Georgia Mountains-Jasper GA.
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Winter Camping

Greetings Y'all

My hubby and I live in Georgia about 70 miles north of Atlanta and
have a 2010 Cherokee Graywolf 19RR toy hauler made by Forest River.

(We just love it!)

We have truly enjoyed talking our motorcycle and dogs on camping trips.
Being centrally located, we are luck to have so many wonderful parks
within just a few hours drive of our home, with many of them open year round.

Because we live in the south, we get to use our camper from early April through early November.
Alas, camping season seems to go by so fast! Just as we get the hang of camping and setting up,
the weather turns really cold and we are winterizing our trailer once again. Itís so sad!


Wanting to use our trailer more, we were wondering about winter camping.

Our trips would be limited to the southeastern states; Alabama and Florida,
Georgia, North and South Carolina, and Eastern Tennessee.


Our Graywolf trailer has a gas furnace along with a carbon dioxide detector.
The plumbing, water pipes and holding tanks are enclosed in the floor and the underside is completely sealed.

Conversely the gray and black water dump pipes are exposed to the elements.

So our questions and concerns:
Are we okay to take our trailer winter camping?

Do we have enough insulation so our pipes will not freeze?

What precautions do we need to take so we do not damage our trailerís plumbing or other systems?

Do you have any suggestions or comments about winter camping?

Your expertise on this issue is greatly appreciated.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Happy campers
P&K
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Old 12-21-2010, 10:16 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forums!

I haven't camped when temps get freezing or below, but I have read where people say that your enclosed underbelly will keep your tanks from freezing. They also mention that if the temps drop below freezing overnite to unhook your water hose and that you may want to keep some water in the fresh water tank in case the ouside hydrant freezes. I'm not sure about the dump valves, but I believe they'll be OK.

I'm sure there are some on this forum with winter camping experience and they will be able to help you with their expertise.

Good luck and happy camping!
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Old 12-22-2010, 10:13 AM   #3
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We were in your area last week, stayed at Red Top last Thursday. Got in just after sunset, but it did seem like a nice park, one of the few we found that offered limited cable.

We have a 21' motorhome that we had already winterized a while back. We drove from NE Ohio to Sarasota and back. We had planned on using water while down there but ended up dry camped for the full 19 days because of the cold weather seemed to follow us down. About half the nites were below freezing. Really wasn't a problem. We did use bottled water or antifreeze to flush the toilet but otherwise we didn't use any water.

Unless you are looking at a hard freeze I would guess that adding a little antifreeze into your waste tanks overnite would help protect them.
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Old 12-22-2010, 12:24 PM   #4
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A lot is going to depend on where you stay, and how cold it may be. If you have full hook-ups, then you may need to unhook the water hose and keep some water in the fresh tank to use, as mentioned earlier. No need to keep it full, just a few gallons to flush toilet, make coffee, etc. Don't forget to refill. I've had tanks freeze on a 20 degree night with 40 degree day, and that's about as cold as I will camp, so I've never worried about the tanks. You can always dump the tanks every evening, (I know not recommended unless they are full), and then the small amount of liquid that might freeze wouldn't hurt anything.

If you don't have hook-ups, your furnace will drain a battery in one night. You'll go through a lot of propane either way. You'll need a lot of clothes to enjoy the motorcycles. Good Luck, and Merry Christmas.
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Old 12-22-2010, 12:46 PM   #5
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Cold Weather Camping

We spent last week in our 28ft Grey Wolf at Ft.Yargo state park in Winder, Ga. Temps were down into the teens on several days! When freezing temps were forecast, we disconnected our water hose and added antifreeze to the black and gray tanks. We emptied the fresh water tank and just used bottled water for coffee, etc. We used the excellent bath house for bathroom and shower. Don't forget to turn off the hotwater heater if it will have no water! We use a ceramic electric heater most of the time and back it up with the furnace when it can't keep up with the extreme low temps. We enjoyed our winter trip, you pretty much have the park to yourself!
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:34 AM   #6
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HEAT TAPES ARE YOUR FRIEND!!! but not the "button" style. self regulating are the best. run them along your sewer lines and any exposed water lines, tape them to the lines with electricians black tape (not rubber) and then wrap the lines in insulation.


this stuff works on the water line for long sections. mine comes straight up from ground, does a 90 into my unit. I used this stuff for the long straight section.


Then used this on the sections and around that 90


no frozen lines!! even in -40 windchill outside!

Also since im in a permanent spot I have "skirted" my trailer. you probably dont need to go as over board being way down south lol



ohh and "Vent Pillows" work very well to keep the cold and moisture out and the heat in! (also do the opposite in the summer)
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Old 12-23-2010, 12:08 PM   #7
itch'n to road trip
 
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Winter Camping

WOW!! Thanks soooo much for all the great advice on winter camping... ask and ye shall receive!!
We can't wait to get out and give it a try.

Come see us in North Georgia...love to have some company when we go camping... Just think of the great campfire stories we could tell.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year y'all.
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Old 12-23-2010, 12:10 PM   #8
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Haven't stayed at Ft Yargo yet...but hear its a wonderful park. This may be my winter camping trip...not far from home.
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Old 12-23-2010, 01:29 PM   #9
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I am getting ready to do some cold camping. Leaving Bracey Va on the 25th to go to Va beach to celebrate christmas with kds and grandkids. Stay there for a week ( snow forcast 26th.) after that go to SC and visit my mother for a few days then on to niceville Fla. for a couple weeks. May get thawed out there. I have heated tanks, Fully enclosed underbelly and button type regulated heat tapes. Never had a problem with them. I will keep you posted on my experience
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Old 12-23-2010, 02:23 PM   #10
itch'n to road trip
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill and theresa View Post
I am getting ready to do some cold camping. Leaving Bracey Va on the 25th to go to Va beach to celebrate christmas with kds and grandkids. Stay there for a week ( snow forcast 26th.) after that go to SC and visit my mother for a few days then on to niceville Fla. for a couple weeks. May get thawed out there. I have heated tanks, Fully enclosed underbelly and button type regulated heat tapes. Never had a problem with them. I will keep you posted on my experience
Hey!
Did your tank come prewired with heat tape or did you do it yourself?
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