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Old 04-09-2021, 06:32 PM   #41
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It should be a good weekend for your shakedown. Deer Creek has some fantastic electric only sites.
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Old 04-12-2021, 08:09 AM   #42
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Great weekend, here's a stream of consciousness rundown: Hit early Friday afternoon traffic leaving town on the backroads. I discovered how much a full belly of fresh water moves at the first stoplight. I got cutoff in the first mile by an angry, possibly intoxicated motorist. The truck made some dinging warning sounds that I still haven't figured out because there was no message or light on the dashboard to go along with it. The tow/haul button in the F-150 is nice because it downshifts while braking, that had a great feel. I heard some banging from my Recurve R3 WDH and found one of the bars was not seated properly and had come loose. Otherwise, the trailer hauled great and we went a leisurely 28 miles in 57 minutes (29.5 MPH) averaging 10.5 MPG.

Arrived at Deer Creek State Park and disregarded the "park here to check in" lane and lined up behind the other two campers at the window. The attendant asked kindly if it was our first time here, and if we could remember to pull to the side when checking in. I apologized and said that, yes, I knew better, but I thought maybe it's a COVID thing that we all just line up and block traffic now. She assured me it is not. Found our site and backed in easily. It's a pretty easy rig to reverse.

Got all set up with the PUGs using PUG Ears and I'm not quite convinced I have that part right. We got some rain up underneath, but I think that's to be expected when we had some pretty good wind gusts. Speaking of, I am extremely paranoid about that awning and had it pulled in more often that not. It bounced a few times in the breeze and I didn't like the way that looked. We had a couple of small drops of water come through the stitching of the tent ends, but generally stayed very dry.

We forgot things, like a pot to cook spaghetti noodles. Pillows. Binoculars. Flashlight batteries. The legs of our fancy backpacking chairs sunk into the soft ground. We got annoyed by people disregarding the posted rules, like two cars to a site and two wheels on the pad - there were many sites that turned into a party with cars parked all over. I guess that's the way the weekend goes.

The biggest surprise came when it was time to leave, and it took us 30 minutes just to exit the campground. The line for the dump station went all the way into the campground and it was impossible for anyone to leave or go around. We planned on dumping closer to home so the road could work its magic, but we had to sit in line anyways. That was frustrating.





The water level on the lake was really low but that made for a memorable experience exploring the lake bottom.




Some genius decided to drive their golf cart down there and got stuck in the creek bed. I'll be honest, I'm not a fan of most motorized vehicles in the campground but stuff like this just puts me in a really foul mood.


Edit: More photos uploaded to my forum album here: https://www.forestriverforums.com/fo...lbums3734.html
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Old 04-12-2021, 09:15 AM   #43
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I am extremely paranoid about that awning and had it pulled in more often that not. It bounced a few times in the breeze
You picked a good weekend... a little sun and a little rain to make it complete... sorry that the weather turned cooler for you though. I know it rained here just south of Cincinnati more then it did not rain most of the weekend.

As of a couple of years ago there were a number of posts about awning hold down poles. A couple of members even sold things to help out, but those seem to have dried up.

One member sold an add-on bracket that used existing bolts on the awning arm to provide a hold-down anchor point for the awning on each side. I thought I had a picture of the bracket but cannot find it. It works great.

The second piece to go with that bracket are poles. The poles not only hold Down the awning from flipping up over the roof, but also hold up the awning when sometimes you get a good down draft that wants to put your awning on the ground.

Some people bought custom made poles that would hang from those brackets and could be folded into place for travel... again those have disappeared. Others use removeable painter's poles. I made a set from PVC white pipe. These have saved my awning from destruction on a couple of occasions. I always take my awning in when weather threatens. But a couple of times I was just un-aware of the weather situation while away from camp for a little longer then I expected to be. Upon returning once, one of my poles was damaged, but the awning was OK. I compared that to the downed, tents and canopies that I saw in the campground during that quick but violent storm that cam through and I knew then that I just just dodged a bullet BECUASE at least I did have my poles installed to help protect me awning.

I couple those poles with a battery power drill and socket and a number of the SPAX ( Home Depot) screws that I screw into and out of the ground instead of pounding stakes. The drill does double duty for also screwing stab jacks up and down with a different size socket. See pic below...

Read about my mod here... these telescope down to about 5 feet and are light weight to carry. I store them in the larger PVC pipe that I fastened to the frame under the tongue of the Shamrock... seen in the pic below.

https://www.forestriverforums.com/fo...ly-155914.html
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Old 04-12-2021, 09:37 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by rsdata View Post
awning hold down poles
That's a really great idea. I was envious of the people that had their awnings out the entire weekend, and sat outside watching the rain. I had to watch from the inside. I looked all over the awning for tie down points but didn't see anything. I wonder if that bracket is something that could be 3D-printed?
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Old 04-12-2021, 09:50 AM   #45
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this is the bracket that used to be available... needs to be stout...

https://www.forestriverforums.com/fo...2&d=1522110525

SEE POST #23 of my PVC post mod for info on getting ahold of Oldcoot who made these brackets... maybe he still has one or two laying around
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Old 04-12-2021, 09:52 AM   #46
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Yeah, that's pretty hefty.
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Old 04-12-2021, 10:14 AM   #47
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First "real" weekends are always good. Pad and pencil to keep notes. Walmarts are always just minutes away for those "forgot" items that will remain in the camper. Years ago I got frustrated with always cooking on the stove and bought a microwave for the former popup.

We don't bother with the PUGs in this type weather. Foil side up in the summer and blue up when it's cold but in ideal weather they're not needed. Always good to know how to put them on though.

We have the manually deployed canopy and maybe had to retract it one time in the past 15 seasons due to gale force winds. I've had Sunsetter awnings over the patio or deck on our past two houses and they have an automatic retraction gizmo for high winds. I assume someone makes such a device for the electric awnings all the recent campers seem to have.

Never heard of the Recurve R3 WDH. (I've not needed to buy a WDH for at least 15 years.) WDHs are never properly setup at the dealer for the simple reason the new trailer is unloaded and consequently light. You'll want to set this for your loaded weight. Ford HD towing system with the brake controller works very well. Don't set braking too high and note it will need adjustment as the brake pads wear in.

Not sure your average speed makes any sense. Was the angry driver upset you were driving 25 in a 55 zone? Excessive slow speed is not needed and is inconsiderate of the rest of the drivers on the road.

I'm having a hard time visualizing how the dump station line could completely shut off exits to Deercreek SP.

-- Chuck
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Old 04-12-2021, 10:36 AM   #48
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Not sure your average speed makes any sense. Was the angry driver upset you were driving 25 in a 55 zone? Excessive slow speed is not needed and is inconsiderate of the rest of the drivers on the road.

I'm having a hard time visualizing how the dump station line could completely shut off exits to Deercreek SP.

-- Chuck
For the speed question, we have a fair amount of city driving before leaving town, and then it's a windy, mostly posted 45 zone. Google maps has it taking 44 minutes, so that works out to 38 MPH in a car. The angry driver was before we even left town.

As far as leaving the campground goes, I'll try to make a sketch:



So basically, the loops are two way traffic, and you navigate the circle based on the angle of the site. So I leave from the red circle traveling clockwise. People on the outside of the loop travel counter-clockwise. The dump station is at the top of the image and the yellow indicates all of the cars and campers backed up at the bottleneck. There was no way to get around the traffic until you made it to the main road. It was ugly.
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Old 04-12-2021, 11:23 AM   #49
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I know OHIO State parks are always crowded...

2 things...

Use the campground bath house and carry bottled water and don't worry about dumping...
avoid the weekend dump congestion by leaving early or later

Every camp ground usually has a line up at the dump... but that looks like a poor setup.

I just found on google maps a new OH S Park that I have never heard of.

You might want to check it out. I have lived in Cin/N KY area for 35 years and I never knew of it till a week ago.

Pike Lake State Park in Bainbridge... not far for you or me. Maybe your next adventure now that you have worked out some kinks? Looking at reservations they don't seem real crowded.
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Old 04-12-2021, 11:29 AM   #50
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I'll check it out - I enjoy going down to Greenbo at Carter Caves, they're both an easy drive for me.

Edit: And Carter Caves
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Old 04-12-2021, 01:06 PM   #51
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I enjoy going down to Greenbo at Carter Caves
Not much further is Twin Knobs campground at Cave Run Lake.

Not far from that in mid-October is Court Day festival in Mt Sterling, KY... hopefully will be run by this fall. No camping there but not a far drive from either of those KY campgrounds.

My favorite campsite in KY is My Old KY Home S Park in Bardstown. Lots of distillery tours, great eating establishments and historical attractions in that area. And right adjacent to ( walking) to a golf course. About 5 hours from your place.

A nice camp ground north of you is Geneva on the Lake S Park next to Lake Erie. Lots to do in the village of Geneva on the Lake. They have been adding and improving campsites in the park for the last 3 years.

Happy travels...
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Thomas Jefferson to John Norvell pg. 2, June 11, 1807

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Old 04-12-2021, 05:03 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by Chuck_S View Post
We don't bother with the PUGs in this type weather.
I'll admit, part of the appeal of these things is keeping tree drippings / bird droppings off of the tent ends.
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Old 05-14-2021, 06:41 PM   #53
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Second trip out, first with the new puppy. We went through the CAT scales with a full belly of water + 10 gallons in the bed of the truck, full tank of gas + 5 gallons in the bed, two adults, three kids, three bicycles (two in the bed, one in the trailer). Came in at 11,540 with 12.5% tongue weight, well under our 12,800 GCVWR. This makes me a lot more confident heading into the West Virginia mountains next month.

I'm really impressed with the weight distributing hitch - our numbers with the hitch:

3,220 steer
3,540 drive
4,780 trailer

And without the distribution bars:

2,940 steer
3,960 drive
4,640 trailer
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Old 05-15-2021, 07:19 AM   #54
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Thanks for posting the weights. Note the WDH transfers weight from the rear axle of the truck to both the steering axle and trailer axle. Many folks are unaware of moving some weight to the trailer.

-- Chuck
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