Wind Whistle is 26 miles north of Monticello and one thousand feet lower in elevation. It is to the west of Highway 191 and near the south end of Canyonlands National Park. Because it is at 6000 feet it is cooler than the temperatures at Moab but warmer than Monticello. It is still windy, as per the name and we have a clear sky with about 20 knots of wind. At night the wind dies down and the overnight low temperature is expected to be about 20 degrees. I am a little worried about the low temperatures freezing our waterlines.
One of the ways, when we have outside electricity is that we can leave the lights on, in the storage compartments below our RV. These light bulbs are not converted to LED lights so each of them puts out heat. Not a lot of heat, but enough to keep things above freezing below the floor. Our floor gets really cold when it is cold outside, especially when we don’t use our propane furnace.
The propane furnace, heats some of the storage compartments, at the same time as heating the interior of the RV. Another thing that we do is try to keep the freshwater tank full although obviously we still use the freshwater, which transfers the bulk of it into the grey and black water tanks. A full tank of freshwater acts as a heat sink, which makes that compartment warmer during short cold spells.
Canyonlands National Park
As long as the temperature doesn’t dip too far below freezing, for too long a period, this system works for us. What doesn’t work is if the temperature drops and stays low for more than an overnight stay –then we need external electrical power, to keep the lights on, in the storage compartments. We could run these lights on our battery, but this would create a battery state of charge that would be very hard to recover from, without external power, and it wouldn’t recharge quickly, regardless of the electrical source.
At Wind Whistle Campground, we have good sun (but no solar collectors) and the windows make the RV warm up rapidly in the morning. Assuming that we don’t extend our awning, that would shade the exterior, the RV warms up nicely during the day. In so far as comfort goes, the temperature varies widely, with or without the heat on. Venting is easy enough, to get rid of heat, but putting heat in is a lot like heating a garage or shed. No matter how much you put in, it will never turn into a sauna.
There are a few cold-weather RVs available on the market with much better insulation and draft control than we have and they cost more. As I said before, we have a camper, and our wheels are part of our heating system, because they take us, or can take us to warmer places so that it isn’t so cold outside.
I didn’t mean to spend so much time on heating, but when it is this cold, you think about such things. Every day, here at Wind Whistle, we spent exploring. The pictures tell the story about the area better than I could.
On the history side of the story, near Wind Whistle, we made a visit to Newspaper Rock, so-called because it is filled with petroglyphs dating back up to 2000 years ago, but also interesting may have drawings less than 200 years ago including drawings that may depict the Spanish Explorers and possibly even civil war era pictures. It is hard to know how old the drawings are, but if the drawing includes riders on horseback then since the Spanish were the first to introduce horses, the conclusion is that the drawing is after the Spanish arrived.
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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