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Old 07-02-2015, 06:24 PM   #1
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Location: Corinth, Mississippi
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Southeast Trip Report

Recently we completed our 3rd extended journey in our little house on wheels. The trip didn't last quite as long as planned as we gave up after a week of unseasonably warm temperatures. For a change, we took the "retirement option" of altering our planned route and campground stays, and headed for home early rather than sticking to the plan.
Trip Length - 7 weeks
Trip Miles - 3,957
Longest Travel Day - 333 miles
Shortest Travel Day - 22 miles (not counting the 4 hours on ferries from Swan Quarter, NC to Frisco, NC)
Towing MPG - 14.3 (or about 38% less than typical highway driving for our TV)
Our route
map.JPG
For those of you who are interested, the link should open up the route map. E3 - uMap
Clicking on the markers will provide information about where our specific stops were. I'd appreciate hearing if the link does work as well as if you were able to navigate around the map - thanks.

Sightings while traveling?
0 Escapes (but lots of interest in ours everyplace we went)
1 Casita on the road south of Richmond, VA
1 Oliver Legacy Elite on the road near Kingsport, TN
1 Casita and 1 Scamp in the Cedar Point Recreation Area campground in the Croatan National Forest.
The Casita owners asked to tour our Escape, their "dream trailer." In return, they provided a great meal and we had and enjoyable visit with them around their campfire; ya gotta luv it!

Refrigerator performance?
For the 1st time, I had added an ice chest to our trip packing list as I didn't expect the refrigerator to work well in the heat we anticipated. Surprisingly, the RM8551 worked well enough to keep our food from spoiling and our beverages cold. A complete report has been posted in the "Dometic RM8551 insufficient cooling" thread, post #105

Did we use the air conditioner?
Boy did we ever, and it worked quite well. Yep, it was noisy but the comfort of the cooler and drier air was worth the noise. There were a couple of times when we left the unit on overnight as it was plain miserable without it. After the 2nd night of doing this, we called it quits and started for home. I do have the EMS option and it kicked in and shut the air conditioner down a few times when the line voltage dropped; glad I had the protection.

How did the solar panel work?
Our Escape has the 95 watt panel installed. On our trip last fall & winter, the panel could not keep up with our power use with the low angle of the winter sun. This time around, after 5 1/2 days without being hooked up, we did OK. During the time without hookups, the Go Power readout showed 100% battery voltage was achieved every day. However, the Trimetric TM-2030 meter indicated a small deficit in the amp-hours replaced during each day. At the end of the period, the batteries were down 50+ amp-hours, we could have easily gone several days more without any problems. Clearly, being parked at an Outer Banks campground without shade in early June was a good thing for keeping the batteries charged enough to meet our demand. Still, there's more fall/winter camping ahead of us and adding a panel(s) to supplement what is there now will be happening before too long. Oh yes, thankfully no problems with the solar panel mounting; checked when we got home and the panel is still secure after 12,000 road miles.

Towing issues?
The Anderson hitch continues to work well. My adding a VIP 3500 Power Jack last summer has made the attachment of the swivel plate and tightening of the chains much easier and certainly eased the stress on my shoulder. After 12,000 towing miles, the friction liner has extruded up to roughly 1/4" above the surface. I contacted Anderson when we got home and they shipped a replacement liner to me. As others have noted, the customer service from Anderson has been outstanding. I won't talk about how the tail light lens on the Pilot got cracked while backing out of a spot I shouldn't have driven into

Overall, another good trip with new places visited and new people met. We especially enjoyed the time with family and watching our granddaughter graduate from high school. Towards the end of the journey, we remembered the rule of thumb we established when living in south Arkansas and tent camping at our local lakes - when you live in the South, stay home between May and October -it's too hot, too humid, and too buggy to enjoy being outside! We've now added a new rule, when you need the air conditioner on at night, it's time to head home!

Cheryl's trip photos can be found at the website listed below - Gallery name is Escapin' #3.

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Old 07-02-2015, 06:44 PM   #2
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Don and Cheryl,
Sounds like a good long trip despite an early return. Especially good that your refrigerator and the A/C worked!

Is that a Barker you have? I take it that it works well.
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Old 07-02-2015, 06:46 PM   #3
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Nice pictures there, Nebraska folder, particularly western reminds me of the Badlands. In your modification folder you mentioned the awning light not being used that much, I installed a dimmer and I can leave mine on low all night for light that does not reach beyond 10-15 feet, and of course I can crank up the volume and make it daylight. The dimmer makes the awning light more practical as well as useful.
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Old 07-02-2015, 08:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Floating Cloud View Post
Don and Cheryl,
Sounds like a good long trip despite an early return. Especially good that your refrigerator and the A/C worked!

Is that a Barker you have? I take it that it works well.
Yes, it is a Barker. Easy installation and works well.
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Old 07-02-2015, 08:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonF View Post
Recently we completed our 3rd extended journey in our little house on wheels. The trip didn't last quite as long as planned as we gave up after a week of unseasonably warm temperatures. For a change, we took the "retirement option" of altering our planned route and campground stays, and headed for home early rather than sticking to the plan.
Trip Length - 7 weeks
Trip Miles - 3,957
Longest Travel Day - 333 miles
Shortest Travel Day - 22 miles (not counting the 4 hours on ferries from Swan Quarter, NC to Frisco, NC)
Towing MPG - 14.3 (or about 38% less than typical highway driving for our TV)
Our route
Attachment 11493
For those of you who are interested, the link should open up the route map. E3 - uMap















Clicking on the markers will provide information about where our specific stops were. I'd appreciate hearing if the link does work as well as if you were able to navigate around the map - thanks.

Sightings while traveling?
0 Escapes (but lots of interest in ours everyplace we went)
1 Casita on the road south of Richmond, VA
1 Oliver Legacy Elite on the road near Kingsport, TN
1 Casita and 1 Scamp in the Cedar Point Recreation Area campground in the Croatan National Forest.
The Casita owners asked to tour our Escape, their "dream trailer." In return, they provided a great meal and we had and enjoyable visit with them around their campfire; ya gotta luv it!

Refrigerator performance?
For the 1st time, I had added an ice chest to our trip packing list as I didn't expect the refrigerator to work well in the heat we anticipated. Surprisingly, the RM8551 worked well enough to keep our food from spoiling and our beverages cold. A complete report has been posted in the "Dometic RM8551 insufficient cooling" thread, post #105

Did we use the air conditioner?
Boy did we ever, and it worked quite well. Yep, it was noisy but the comfort of the cooler and drier air was worth the noise. There were a couple of times when we left the unit on overnight as it was plain miserable without it. After the 2nd night of doing this, we called it quits and started for home. I do have the EMS option and it kicked in and shut the air conditioner down a few times when the line voltage dropped; glad I had the protection.

How did the solar panel work?
Our Escape has the 95 watt panel installed. On our trip last fall & winter, the panel could not keep up with our power use with the low angle of the winter sun. This time around, after 5 1/2 days without being hooked up, we did OK. During the time without hookups, the Go Power readout showed 100% battery voltage was achieved every day. However, the Trimetric TM-2030 meter indicated a small deficit in the amp-hours replaced during each day. At the end of the period, the batteries were down 50+ amp-hours, we could have easily gone several days more without any problems. Clearly, being parked at an Outer Banks campground without shade in early June was a good thing for keeping the batteries charged enough to meet our demand. Still, there's more fall/winter camping ahead of us and adding a panel(s) to supplement what is there now will be happening before too long. Oh yes, thankfully no problems with the solar panel mounting; checked when we got home and the panel is still secure after 12,000 road miles.

Towing issues?
The Anderson hitch continues to work well. My adding a VIP 3500 Power Jack last summer has made the attachment of the swivel plate and tightening of the chains much easier and certainly eased the stress on my shoulder. After 12,000 towing miles, the friction liner has extruded up to roughly 1/4" above the surface. I contacted Anderson when we got home and they shipped a replacement liner to me. As others have noted, the customer service from Anderson has been outstanding. I won't talk about how the tail light lens on the Pilot got cracked while backing out of a spot I shouldn't have driven into

Overall, another good trip with new places visited and new people met. We especially enjoyed the time with family and watching our granddaughter graduate from high school. Towards the end of the journey, we remembered the rule of thumb we established when living in south Arkansas and tent camping at our local lakes - when you live in the South, stay home between May and October -it's too hot, too humid, and too buggy to enjoy being outside! We've now added a new rule, when you need the air conditioner on at night, it's time to head home!

Cheryl's trip photos can be found at the website listed below - Gallery name is Escapin' #3.

WOW .you have been busy . A lot of great mods . I noticed some I did too . I guess great minds think a like . Some I just haven't got to yet like over the door and I am thinking about under the bed too . Some of these trails you blazed through first . Wish my frig did a little better though but with all the help from Rich and Tom ,I think it will help a little . Great ideas and work . Pat
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Old 07-02-2015, 09:05 PM   #6
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Very nice posting, trip summary. Seven weeks?? Wow. The route map markers function is really neat, and it worked well. Had me wishing to see inclusion of an overnight place in Savannah. Good stuff!
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Old 07-02-2015, 09:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyronL View Post
Very nice posting, trip summary. Seven weeks?? Wow. The route map markers function is really neat, and it worked well. Had me wishing to see inclusion of an overnight place in Savannah. Good stuff!
Thanks Myron for waking me up to the trip report . Great information . I guess my mind right now is into mods . Sorry for not mentioning trip report . Pat
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Old 07-02-2015, 09:43 PM   #8
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I'm glad you had a good trip; sorry it was cut short by the heat. As a resident of the South myself, my new rule is to Escape from May-October, which is why I'm on the West Coast. I seem to have brought the heat with me, though. First rain, now heat.

I have to say Cheryl's photography website is outstanding. The photos are beautiful and the website design is the nicest one I've seen.

Myron - as for Savannah, last fall I stayed at River's End RV Park on Tybee Island. It was expensive, though. There is a state park just south of Savannah, and I think I'll try it on my next trip there.
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Old 07-03-2015, 09:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyronL View Post
Very nice posting, trip summary. Seven weeks?? Wow. The route map markers function is really neat, and it worked well. Had me wishing to see inclusion of an overnight place in Savannah. Good stuff!
Hi Myron,
Thanks for the feedback on the map.
This past December we stayed at Skidaway Island State Park, about 15 miles from the Savannah historic district. Nice park and we would return.
Skidaway Island SP.JPG
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