The best way to get to our next stop in Heber City, Utah is west through Spanish Fork Canyon then east through Provo Canyon. We targeted staying in Provo, but the campground at Heber City came with a high recommendation and we went with it.
Just south of Provo, we stopped to see Tami’s aunt and took her through a short visit to the RV. We found an empty parking lot and then set up and for and spread the slides so she could get a good feel for the size. She is quite an adventurist. One of my first memories about her is that a few years back when she was 81 years old, she went sky-diving. I think she enjoyed the idea that we are vagabonds, going here and there, just to see things.
We are pushing the snow line north again. Heber City, Utah is directly east of Provo canyon. We will be here for a week. Heber City is uphill from Provo, but not a great amount. We find that temperature change is more obvious with altitude than how far north we are. Not that going north this early in the year is advisable. We expect a temperature increase as we drop down into the Snake River valley, further north. We will be heading towards Idaho by the end of the month. Our grandson (from Boise) will be in Salt Lake City today so we should get a chance to see him.
How to Get the Right RV for us
Picking back up on our story about how we got our RV and how we decided full-time travel was right for us. There were three different types of RVs that we considered and two different types of RVs that we seriously considered. The smallest van conversions and truck campers didn’t delight us given the obvious size constraints.
The Class C – RV (a truck frame and truck body with an RV built on the back of the frame), didn’t make the initial cut because they lack storage. We could tell by looking at them that the “super” C – RVs were out of our price range, as were the biggest Class A diesel engine RVs. Although the higher the initial price, the faster the value falls, just like a fancy car. The other problem with the more expensive Class A – RVs is that they are more restricted to commercial campgrounds than smaller RVs.
Our friends advised us of how most national parks and most forest service campgrounds wouldn’t hold a 45’ RV and that the biggest they would consider would be 30 foot. So given these constraints, we looked at 30’ RVs and only found a few 30’ fifth wheel RVs to be big enough. Travel trailers were also non-starters because of the lack of storage space. We soon realized that Class C, RVs when they were 30’ long were much smaller inside than a 30’ Class A – RV. This is because the engine and cab section takes up the first eight feet that are not used for living. We are not going to crawl above the cab to go to sleep every night – so that was the final straw for Class C – RVs.
Fifth wheel or a small Class A?
We were down to two choices. Fifth wheel or a small Class A were the ones that captured our imagination. Fifth wheels require a big truck, as does a Class A, requires a big engine. When we started shopping trucks, to go along with a fifth wheel, we made a realization that we would also have to drive a big truck every day even when we weren’t pulling the RV. We didn’t really want to drive a big truck every day and that pushed us toward a small Class A.
At about the same time we were making the decision to sell our house and live in the RV, and travel frequently and at the same time, continue working at our jobs. This decision made the big truck idea less desirable and I would have been more comfortable in a smaller car.
Mixed into this decision of Class A – RV was the decision on how to tow the car. At the time we had two cars, (one SUV and one car) and both of them were not towable, with the front wheels on the ground. So my idea was to get a tow dolly and tow the SUV. My cousin who has 30 years of experience with Class A – RVs told me “you don’t want one of those damn things” and his emphasis and explanation completely shifted my thoughts on that subject. Following that advice, was possibly one of the best decisions we made after deciding on a Class A. I see people make-do with tow dollies and I am very happy I don’t have one of those (damn things).
Ten Feet Shorter
Our 35’ Class A is ten feet shorter than the biggest Class A – RVs. However, it is about five feet longer than I wanted. Remember our discussions about slide outs — that slide-outs made all the difference in how we wanted to live. We wanted slides on both sides of the RV, hopefully, four slides total. The closest RV we found to our three slide RV with four slides, is 37’ long. My ideal would be less than 32’ with four slides, alas; the closest we could get was 35’ with three slides.
The idea of driving a big truck every day and the total number of slide-outs, while trying to be short enough for forest service campsites is how we ended up where we are.
Here is a link to the google map for the area.
Link to our route New Mexico to Salt Lake City
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