Albert is our travel trailer. A bucket list item for sure. It has been a dream of mine to 1) own a camper 2) camp in said camper 3) customize the camper and 4) travel across the country. #3 and #4 will be the subject of several future posts but it is the reason we chose this particular model.
Anywho…we purchased Albert last June. His owners lovingly cared for him while they had him. We were in love at first sight when we saw the ad on our local facebook sale page. He is glorious!
We couldn’t wait to get out on the road with him. We had a business trip so he had to stay parked in the driveway for a few weeks but then we decided to hit the open road! OK OK that is probably a stretch. We had a weekend and tickets to an Arlo Guthrie show at the Flying Monkey so we needed to venture fairly close to home. We had stayed in a few Jellystone campgrounds in the past and decided to give our local NH site a try. So we headed to Ashland NH to the Jellystone campground.
We got checked in and staff brought us to our site. It was in the front wayyyy to the end of the campground. We were the next to last site. There was access down to what I would call the fishing dock. It was some stairs down to a very small wooden deck with railings all the way around it and it sat above the river. You could definitely fish from it. We did not.
Staff attempted to assist us in getting Albert onto the site but they were less skilled at it than my husband who had only backed up our rig twice now. They directed him and if I hadn’t screamed poor Albert would have backed into the tree the first time and would have scraped a tree all the way down one side the next time. My husband just ignored their directions at that point and he nailed it! With Albert parked nicely on the site we were told our hookups were all the way to the other side of the site (wrong side of the camper too) and I questioned it because of the location and that it had the site number of the site on that side of us. I noticed our hookups were actually on the other side of a tree but had our site number on them so we went ahead and got hooked up.
We got the patio rug out to cover up the dirt site. I wished we had a rake because the site had a lot of trash and partially eaten food strewn about. Mental note to put that on the camper shopping list. This was exactly the purpose in this short weekend trip. We wanted to get to know Albert and figure out what we needed. I owned a pop-up camper many, many years ago but it didn’t have all the appliances and features that Albert does so it is like starting from scratch.
Let’s be real. The campground was not bad in and of itself. The sites were a decent size. Our site backed up to a hill of greenery separating us from the majority of the campground. That was very nice. Location-wise I would say we won the lottery.
We had our dogs who drew a lot
of attention from the kids, especially our big fella. He is fuzzy and loves kids. It was nice to be in a spot that had some foot traffic (those going to the fishing dock) as opposed to being enroute to the store, pool, inflatables or near restrooms. It was still relaxing.
My husband was eager to try out the outside stove. We met a great guy who was camping next to us with his kids and he helped us find a secret valve to turn the propane on for the outside stove. That was super helpful. And, I have made a rule no cooking splattery foods (ie, bacon) inside. We pretty much figured out how to use everything except the oven.
We spent the rest of the day relaxing in lounge chairs outside with the dogs leashed up next to us. When it was time to head out to our Arlo Guthrie concert, we brought the dogs inside and put them in their crates. We don’t know yet how they will manage in the camper so the crates it is! We did leave the radio on for them (Did I mention there is a built in entertainment system?? With indoor and outdoor speakers! So cool!). When we returned all was well and we went to sleep.
The next day was sunny and warm but not hot. Hubby cooked bacon and eggs on the outdoor stove and I sat at the dinette watching him through the window and attempting to do some work on my laptop. This turned out to be a hassle. The advertised wifi was not coming up. I checked in with the office who informed me they don’t have wifi and that they say they do to get people to come to the campground. Alrighty then. Thank God for Verizon! I turned on my mobile hotspot on my smartphone and I was back in business. Sorry Jellystone, but as a business owner this is not just an amenity, it is a necessity that I was counting on. Subsequently, we learned wifi is often an issue at campgrounds even if they do have it. I see another blog post in the future!
We went to check out a new restaurant and had lunch. Then spent the afternoon doing nothing. Doing nothing is rare for me. Sitting with the dogs in the shade on a summer day was sweeeeeeet! I had more opportunities for the big fuzzy dog to love on some children too.
Remember we promised you that we would be REAL here? Well if haven’t noticed already we are living up to that promise. And it’s about to get really real. Later in the afternoon a woman and her three teen daughters arrived in the site next to us. Turns out they had two aggressive dogs and were not restrained. There is a rule at campgrounds that your dog has to be restrained at all times. This is to keep campers safe which also keeps the privilege of allowing people to bring their sweet pups with them. If you have pets that are not social just keep them inside away from the other campers. It’s good for everyone.
While we overall had a great time camping with Albert, it was mostly because we enjoyed exploring the camper and figuring out how everything works. Albert was light and pulled like a dream. We barely knew he was there as we traveled the back roads and highways of New Hampshire.
As I write this it makes me long to be back on the road with Albert who is presently covered and winterized in a little wooded cove on our property blanketed with snow. I drive past him every time I leave or return home. Each time I greet him with a “Hi Albert!” as I pass by. I am counting the days to wake you from your winter slumber, Albert and we will be off on our next adventure. As Willie says “I just can’t wait to be on the road again”…
Here are a few RV resources you may like:
Travel Diary Software – Nomad Notes
Guide for RV, Truckers Mountain Directory