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Old 07-13-2015, 04:06 PM   #1
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Talking Hello from Fraser Valley

I recently lost my husband. I would like to know if it is safe or wise to buy a small trailer and travel by myself in this day and age or would it be better for me just to spend the money on hotels/motels. Does anyone have any advice? I am 60 and not very agile. It takes me a while to get off the floor/ground if I have to do things and sometimes walk with a cane if the ground is uneven or rough for stability.

My family used to have a trailer when I was young but sold it and I always wanted to have one again. Now that my husband is gone, I would like to do some traveling, thus my question.

Thanks for listening,
Truly
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Old 07-13-2015, 04:17 PM   #2
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I have a friend who could've written your post, except she's older by a few years. She has to walk with a cane and can't get up very easily if down. Yet she doesn't let that stop her. She has an Escape 15 and takes it all over the place and usually boondocks (doesn't stay in RV parks etc.). She has a dog which helps her feel safe.

I think it would depend on how much you travel and where you like to go. If you prefer cities, maybe go the motel route. If not and you travel enough to justify the cost, don't let your age or physical condition stop you - you can do it. You could get an electric jack and a rear-view camera to make the hooking up easier.
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Old 07-13-2015, 04:25 PM   #3
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I think you should give it a go, if this is a desire of yours. Be it one year, or 20 years, it can still be worth it. You will always be able to sell with little loss of capitol. My great aunt did just this, pulling a small 4th wheel after my uncle died. She was 65, and continued to do this for 20 years and only stopped when her eyesight started to fail. By the way, she is still living on her own, legally blind with macular degeneration, and will turn 95 shortly.

I would not worry too much about safety, but would still take all the measures to ensure you are safe as possible.
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Old 07-13-2015, 04:36 PM   #4
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I think most of us are 60 more or less and not so agile anymore. Getting a trailer probably depends on how self sufficient you are. You have to be able to drive the rig, hook/unhook, and setup the trailer, by yourself. None of which is hard to learn or do.

Think if I was a single women I'd look at something I could just drive away in if I got worried, like a class B or small C.
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Old 07-13-2015, 04:43 PM   #5
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Lots of single women camping out there, and several organized groups. A lady in this group bought my Castia 17 footer and loves the camaraderie:

Outdoor Adventure Group for Women | Sisters on the Fly
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Old 07-13-2015, 04:47 PM   #6
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Hi Truly...

I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. But it's wonderful to see you looking forward and thinking of new adventures!

I think you could safely camp in reputable campgrounds. KOA campgrounds are generally pretty good. I prefer camping in state/national parks, when available... but these might be more secluded than you might like. You'd have to give it a try to see how it feels to you.

I find towing a small trailer pretty comfortable, especially with a good hitch (we have an Equal-I-zer and it works great for us).

Someone suggested a rear camera to help in hooking the tow vehicle to the trailer. We have a rear camera on our tow vehicle and it helps a lot.

There are some women on this forum who camp alone. I'll bet some of them will chime in.

Good luck... and happy trails!!

Dolly
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Old 07-13-2015, 04:57 PM   #7
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My suggestion is to grab life by the horns and get out there.

Ain't nothing wrong with hotels, and it is great to have a "room of your own". For me, I find I tend to stick close to the hotel when not travelling, so it limits my exploring/meeting the locals.

RVer's tend to have more interaction with people. Most will help you if you ask and some even even if you don't ask. I find I'm more "out in nature" with the RV than before, yes even the rain in Hope can't keep me inside.

Personally, I'd suggest a rental of a smaller class C/B to get a feel for it. Thor Axis is a very interesting class A at about 26 feet long, along with the various Pleasureways (Saskatchewan) and Leisure Vans (Winnipeg). *** note, not suggesting a stickie is the best option for Wet Coasters.***

Also, have a visit to the ETI factory in Chilliwack so you can sit/touch/dream in a demo trailer.
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Old 07-13-2015, 05:24 PM   #8
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Hi there,

I'm 73 and my very first RV will be ready October 14th. The members of this Forum have been incredibly supportive - as you can tell by the posts made so far in response to your question. So if you decide to go for it, know that there will be those on this Forum to be there every step of the way for you.

I love what BCnoman said: "grab life by the horns and get out there."
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Old 07-13-2015, 05:43 PM   #9
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I am a 59 year old woman and camp alone with two dogs. I'm not afraid in camp grounds but I worry getting stuck on the road somewhere getting good road side assistance is good for peace of mind. It's a bit of work hitching up but I don't have as easy set up as some have. The 5th wheel looks easier to hitch up I don't have one but others can comment that have hooked up both. Camping makes me feel free and independent. I'm heading for cannon beach soon kind of a resort type camping spot a lot cheaper the a room this time of year - over 300 a night.
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Old 07-13-2015, 06:18 PM   #10
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I think that the folks you meet in campgrounds are a pretty good bunch and most would probably jump right in to help if someone needs a hand. I know I would. Go for that trailer. Time's a wasting. Loren
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Old 07-13-2015, 06:21 PM   #11
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Go For It

I'm an OleMan in his late 70's, need trekking poles to help with my balance, (and sometimes help me get up), pretend I'm hiking when in reality I'm only walking but danged if I'm gonna let that stop me from enjoying what time I have left. So I'm going to say, “Go for it, onmyown, and start building new memories”.

This forum and the FGRV forum are 2 great places to get all the help you want.
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Old 07-13-2015, 06:33 PM   #12
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I'm not sure the primary issue is either gender or age. I think the issue is physical ability. Sometimes there is physical labor involved and to me, that would point to a van type RV rather than a trailer.

This is probably a case where you should ask someone to go through the whole hook-up drill and see if your physical abilities are up to it. If not, there's a lot going for a small van type RV.

Ron
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Old 07-13-2015, 07:03 PM   #13
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I think it's admirable to show the spirit and sense of adventure you obviously possess. If you are retired and do not let time lines rule your life, I believe you can safely camp and exert minimal effort. Here are a few possibilities you might consider. Scout your camping sites on the Internet as to the availability of pull through sites. Many are very level and you might decide not to unhitch. Attend rallies or camping club campouts. Lots of nice people and you soon make friends, get good advice, and help is always available. When you make a site reservation, take a site near the camp host where possible. It's a lot less crowded on the weekdays than the weekends, we like to camp Sunday thru Thursday when school is out. The shoulder seasons are great. Not crowded, experienced campers. Take your time, think it through, do your research and go camping. Best of luck to you.
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Old 07-13-2015, 07:55 PM   #14
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I'm single, I travel alone and I can collect Social Security if I wish and I own TWO travel trailers! For me there is only two options. Stay home or go out and make memories. I refuse to stay home

I agree with everyone else. Give it a try. Either by renting or buying. Do not live with "I wish I would have..." Don't delay, there's lots of good stuff out there waiting for your discovery.

Best of luck!
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Old 07-13-2015, 09:59 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onmyown View Post
I recently lost my husband. I would like to know if it is safe or wise to buy a small trailer and travel by myself in this day and age or would it be better for me just to spend the money on hotels/motels. Does anyone have any advice? I am 60 and not very agile. It takes me a while to get off the floor/ground if I have to do things and sometimes walk with a cane if the ground is uneven or rough for stability.

My family used to have a trailer when I was young but sold it and I always wanted to have one again. Now that my husband is gone, I would like to do some traveling, thus my question.

Thanks for listening,
Truly
Hi there, sorry for your loss.
I also commend you for checking into trailering.

Here is my 2 cents. I think you might find visiting ETI worth your while. Book some time and have someone at,ETI show you around. They can give you some good advice. You can talk to them and they can give you an idea of what trailering might look like for you.

Larry
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Old 07-14-2015, 12:46 AM   #16
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It might be easier to hitch and unhitch a fifth-wheel than a conventional trailer, due to the amount of bending over involved.
With a conventional trailer, a weight-distributing hitch (WDH) will be extra work and may be physically difficult - keep the trailer small enough relative to the tow vehicle and you can avoid the need for WDH.

A motorhome entirely avoids hitching, but you must "break camp" to go anywhere, and only the smallest motohomes are convenient to drive and park anywhere you might want to go.

It certainly makes sense to try out the process of hitching and unhitching a trailer of the types you are considering; either personal visits to owners, a visit to a rally, or a factory visit could work for this.

I can't speak for anyone else or their situation, but there can be a lot personal feeling of security in having your (known and comfortable) accommodations always with you.
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Old 07-14-2015, 02:15 AM   #17
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I'm a single woman camper in my late 60's and do some boon docking as well as state and national parks. I have always felt safe. If I feel uncomfortable, I just move on. I'm a happy camper
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Old 07-14-2015, 06:45 AM   #18
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The only issue with hooking up a 5th wheel is reaching the pin that locks the hitch latch arm, at least on the B&W hitch. Don't know about the Reese ETI provides.
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Old 07-14-2015, 01:04 PM   #19
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Sorry for the loss of your husband - that must be so heartbreaking.

We decided to go for the 5th wheel for several reasons. My husband feels it'll be easier for me to hitch up than a "regular" trailer as it's not very comfortable for me to bend over. I plan to take it out on my own far more than when Dirk will be with me.

In April I rented a 34' motorhome for a month and drove down to the Sacramento area and back up along 101. Absolutely loved parts of it, but really wished I had a trailer and vehicle. I went with the motorhome rental as none of our vehicles could have towed the few trailers I found for rent. It was rather hairy at times driving that monster along the roads (esp the small bit of Hwy 1 I got on and quickly left the next day).

At one campsite the folks next to me had a Class B van that they had to unhook and hook back up every time they left camp. Kind of a pain, but it worked for them. Least they could go sightseeing - I had to rely on a friend for that and that only happened in two places during my month long trip.

You'll need to decide how you want to use it. Just go to one place and hang out? A small motorhome would work (a friend of mine does that just about every weekend in the summer and goes to her sister's cabin, so a motorhome works best for her). Don't mind unhooking/hooking back up when you sightsee? A Class B would work. Want to hang out in the campground for some time as well as sightsee (and not unhook and stow everything away inside)? Then a trailer and towing vehicle will work for you.

Also, at most of the campgrounds I was at, if I needed help, it was right next door to me. At more than one I asked for help and the guy next to me was there in a flash helping out. It was great. I never felt unsafe. I just did the usual precautions like I do at home - be aware of your surroundings and act confident.

As an aside - I was just flabbergasted by how many wives told me they were amazed I was traveling by myself and how they never drove their Class C (or A) themselves, nor did they know how to hook everything up. I wonder if the reactions would have been different if I had a vehicle and trailer.

You can also go visit other trailers and talk to their owners about what it's like to hitch up and travel in them. We visited 4 in the Seattle area and it was a huge learning experience. Very worthwhile, to say the least.

Good luck with your decision.
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