Canada offers plenty of wide-open spaces with endless spectacular views. One area in British Columbia that offers both of those elements is Edgewater Hilltop Par 3 Golf & RV Park, located in the small farming community of Edgewater.
Set in the picturesque Columbia Valley, the family-owned and operated Edgewater Hilltop Par 3 Golf & RV Park is nestled between the Rocky Mountains and Purcell Mountain range and is a favorite of those who’ve been lucky enough to discover this hidden gem.
For the last 83 years, the Lautrup family has owned the property that now includes the nine-hole golf course and 12 site RV park. In 1994, 40 acres of the Lautrup farmland was converted into a golf course, and it’s been a popular draw ever since.
This bucolic track a few miles from Radium Hot Springs is a par 27 and a short 1,101 yards. A great place to practice your short game, the signature hole at Edgewater Hilltop Par 3 is the 83-yard, par 3, 7th. From an elevated tee box, your eye catches the pond on the right and the steep gully to the left.
Regardless of the outcome, you can’t help but enjoy the view! Walking the course takes about an hour-and-a-half, depending on how many photos you take!
In year’s past, the family owned and operated a small motel on the property. Keeping with that entrepreneurial spirit, current owners George and Jeannette Lautrup added a small RV park in 2015.
Seven of the sites offer full hookups that include 30 amp electrical, water, sewer, fire pits, and picnic tables. Other amenities include free Wi-Fi, newly-constructed washrooms with showers, and laundry facilities.
In addition to the golf course and fantastic scenery, Edgewater Hilltop Par 3 Golf & RV Park is also known by the locals as one of the best places to dine. Visitors soon discover that everything is made fresh, including the homemade pies baked daily.
Do you need to lose weight? No, I don’t mean go on a diet or start exercising more. I’m talking about trailer weight—you know, those extra pounds that stack up every time you buy a souvenir or invest in a new DVD player for your RV.
According to the RVSEF, about 60% of travel trailers exceed their maximum weight capacity. A couple extra pounds may seem like a minor problem, but the truth is that excessive trailer weight is responsible for the majority of RV safety issues. Keep reading to find out how to avoid these hazards and make your next trip a safe one.
How to find out if you’re overweight
The first step is to find out if your trailer actually is overweight. Check the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) and GCWR (Gross Combined Weight Rating) in your tow car’s manual to determine the maximum weight your vehicle can handle, including itself and its passengers. Also note your trailer’s GVWR, which is often found in the user manual or printed inside the trailer. When you have these numbers, you need to take your vehicle and trailer to a weighing station.
The most accurate method of weight measurement is wheel position weighing, which determines how much weight is resting on each of the vehicle’s wheels. This allows you to see if the trailer’s weight is unevenly distributed. Only a few companies offer wheel position weighing, but many of them travel the country. If you’re willing to pay the $75 for an accurate measurement, you can make an appointment online.
A cheaper and more convenient way to get a semi-accurate weight measurement is by using a certified CAT scale, found at many truck stops. These cost about $10 the first time you measure, and only a couple dollars each time afterward. CAT scales take an axle-by-axle reading, which still gives you a good idea of your trailer’s weight. Just make sure it falls far below your trailer’s GVWR. You can also use a CAT scale to weigh your tow vehicle and make sure that the weight of your car doesn’t exceed its limits. After weighing your vehicle and tow trailer, you can add the two weights together and compare it to your car’s GCWR. This will tell you if your vehicle is able to tow your trailer.
Dangers of traveling with an overweight trailer
If your trailer’s weight (including all cargo and passengers) does exceed its maximum capacity, driving with the trailer attached is a huge risk. Overweight trailers put more pressure on the wheels and axles than they are designed to handle, which can cause tire blowouts or trailer sway.
Excess weight causes tires to wear more quickly and makes it harder to stop the vehicle. If your vehicle is involved in an accident, you will be liable. Insurance companies will be less likely to help pay for damages. Police officers can also pull you over and give you a hefty fine if they suspect that your trailer is overweight. In other words, traveling with extra weight just isn’t worth the issues that it can cause.
How to lose weight
“So,” you may be asking, “now what?” The answer is simple—it’s time to lose some weight. Obviously, you can’t throw out large items like your mattress or toilet, but you might be surprised at how much you can downsize by paying attention to the small things in your trailer.
Every time you buy a souvenir, a decoration, or even a storage basket, you add weight to your trailer. These tiny amounts really add up, so consider getting rid of some of the extra stuff. Ask yourself which items you need to keep, and which ones you hardly ever use. This could be clothing, extra bedding, unnecessary dishes, or the camp stove you never cook with. Be frugal with what you decide to buy and keep the weight of your trailer in mind.
Top tips for trailer weight
Fill it up: Keep in mind that water, propane, and fuel add extra weight. Fill all your tanks before weighing for an accurate measurement.
Weigh in advance: Don’t wait until the day you start a long trip to weigh your trailer. Give yourself time to make adjustments and make an appointment at a weighing station if you need to.
Balance your weight: Even if your trailer falls within the weight limits, too much weight on one side can cause a serious accident. Rearrange your things to evenly distribute their weight.
Leave room to grow: Don’t go traveling with a trailer that falls just a pound or two under the weight limit. Leave as much room as possible in case you absolutely have to add something.
Weigh your stuff: When packing your trailer, consider stacking food, clothes, and anything else that you’re bringing in a cardboard box and weighing it on a bathroom scale. This can give you an idea of how many pounds you’re adding.
Overweight trailers may seem like a small problem, but surpassing your vehicle’s maximum capacity can be disastrous. Pay attention to your trailer’s weight and stay safe on the road.
Adjusting to RV life can be pretty hard at first. Making the choice to follow our dreams and live life on the road is one of the best decisions we’ve ever made, but it’s definitely got its own unique set of challenges.
It’s a major adjustment to leave behind the life you knew; You’re saying goodbye to your house, your friends and family members, and probably your old job too. You’re journeying into the unknown and that’s HUGE. If you’ve made this transition or plan to, you’re so very brave and you have a huge community out there to support you.
I wanted to share some things with you that have helped us in our journey. It can be difficult for some, especially in those first few months, but it gets so much easier and we’re here to help. It just takes a little while to find your bearings.
SET REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS
People refer to RV life as a “permanent vacation” and thats just not true. We still have to work, keep up the laundry, buy groceries, and pay bills. We’re not immune to stress and our problems don’t disappear. RV life has some amazing perks, like exploring beautiful landscapes and changing your backyard whenever you want, but we do regular people stuff too.
You could be on the go all the time and moving every couple days, but we’ve found that we need balance so we don’t burn ourselves out. Find that balance and a pace that works for you.
BE OPEN TO THE JOURNEY
Mindset is everything. If you approach things with a open heart, without expectations of what it “should” be you will save yourself a lot of grief. Almost nothing goes as planned when you want it to, so be flexible and learn to adapt.
Be open to changing plans. Not holding ourselves to strict schedules, has given us so much freedom. That doesn’t mean theres no planning involved, but we give ourselves some wiggle room. We can add a few days at or leave early if we want to. On actual travel days, we personally like to leave early and move no more than 200 miles. That may sound short, but it keeps us stress free and we still have the whole day ahead of us.
Sometimes you get a flat tire, or the campground is full or you get on the road later than expected… We like to have a lot of daylight to come up with a backup plan. No matter the obstacle, theres always a lesson to be learned from any situation. You just might end up learning a new skill, finding a great new camp spot, or making a new friend.
FIND YOUR TRIBE
We spent the first few months on the road navigating this new life by ourselves. We learned a lot in those months, but I can’t even describe how much we grew once we found our place in the RVing community.
We found our tribe with the Xscapers, we met like minded individuals, who understood the joys and struggles we faced. They helped us learn the ropes of boondocking, we learned about generators and solar and so much more. We shared stories, campfires and meals together and we still meet up every chance we get.
We had no idea how important this was to us, until we found it. We encourage you to find your tribe. Join a club, attend a rally, invite your neighbors over to your campfire. Just put yourself out there, you won’t regret it.
NURTURE YOUR RELATIONSHIP
This may not apply to you, but if it does its very important. Your partner is not your enemy. It will feel like it at times (ahem..backing up the trailer) but they are going to be your biggest support system. You’re a team and it requires both of you for the ship to run smoothly. It will take a while to figure out your individual jobs, but once you do you will be unstoppable!
We tend to take our frustrations out on the ones closest to us, so its very important to communicate openly with your partner. Improving our communication skills have been key to avoiding conflict in our tiny space.
Your confidence will grow day by day and the experiences you have will be priceless. RV Life is filled with beautiful natural wonders and the most kind hearted people. Enjoy the journey and know that you made it happen.
As you grow and learn, don’t be afraid to help out others who are just beginning. They may need advice or they may just need a friend, but it will mean the world. We had others show us the way and now its our duty to pass it on.
In our recent post about Adjusting to RV Life, we touched on relationships and how important it is to work as a team. It got me inspired to really dive into the struggles that couples can face on the road and how we’ve worked to maintain a healthy relationship. You’re probably seeing a lot more […]
Now that you’re armed with all the resources and preliminary information you need, it’s time to put your nose to the grindstone and find your dream RV. You’ll need to ask yourself a few important questions during your research. Don’t worry – we’re here to help you answer them.
#1. Understanding Your Travel Style
In the previous article, we briefly covered a few different travel styles and how they may impact your decision. Now, it’s time to find your travel style, so you don’t get stuck with an RV that doesn’t work for you:
Would you rather tow a trailer or drive a motorhome? Towing can be a challenge and takes a great deal of practice, but it has the benefit of being able to leave your RV at the campground and take your tow vehicle into town. Driving a motorhome is a little easier, especially if you’re in a Class B or Class C, which is similar to driving an oversized van or truck.
How do you plan on camping? Do you have the funds to stay at high-end RV resorts, or would you rather save money and stay in basic campgrounds or dispersed campsites? Camping off the grid is free, fun, and rewarding, but you’ll want to make sure your RV is equipped to do so. Solar panels, large holding tanks, and energy-efficient appliances are a must. You can learn more about boondocking with this free guide fromRVshare.
Will you be spending most of your time outdoors, exploring, or does hanging out around the RV sound more like your cup of tea? If it’s the former, a basic, no-frills camper should suit you just fine. If you like entertaining, though, you might want to look for an RV with an outdoor kitchen or TV.
How much privacy does your family need? If you want a quiet space away from the rambunctious kiddos, look for RVs with versatile layouts. Fifth wheels and Class C motorhomes often have two distinct sleeping areas on opposite sides of the RV – kids and parents get their own separate bedrooms!
#2. New Vs. Used
Another critical decision is whether to buy new or used. A new RV will come with a warranty and the appeal of having very few miles on it – but you’ll need to pay a pretty penny for it. On the flipside, used RVs are more affordable, but they often don’t come with warranties or financing. Gone With the Wynns has an excellent blog post about their experience buying a new RV.
#3. Size Matters: Floor Plans and Layouts
Space is precious in an RV. Not only is it important how much space you have; it’s also important how the space is used. A poor layout can make even the most spacious RV feel claustrophobic. RV floor plans are diverse, so you’ll need to look at many different ones to find out which is best for you. One of the best ways to try out different floor plans in real life is to rent an RV for a few days. You can find a wealth of localRV rentals by owner online.
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BEFORE you head to a dealer to see new and used trailers,download your FREE RV Buyers Worksheet for help keeping track of:
The feature must haves that are important to you and your family
Which brands or manufacturers you like
Budgeting tools including a payment calculator resource
Multiple well spaced pages with room for lots of your notes
BONUS Resources: Trade-in values, tow vehicle ratings, and finance options
If you’re anything like us, drinking clean water while traveling is very important and it can be a challenge to know if what your drinking is from a safe source. Living and traveling full time in an RV, means our water source is constantly changing, so we want the peace of mind that our water […]
No one likes to think about insurance. But whether you are heading out for a vacation or live in an RV full-time, insurance is something that you need to consider.
Many times people are tempted to just get the cheapest or quickest coverage just to get that task over with so they can move on to more fun travel plans, but having the wrong insurance or being underinsured for what you are wanting to do can lead to trouble if you end up needing to call on your insurance policy.
Recently I had the opportunity to ask my insurance agent some questions about RV insurance, and in particular what might be needed for full-time RVers. Although our particular insurance company does not cover full-time RVers, he offered some sage advice and things to consider when looking for an insurance policy.
Q: What is your number one piece of advice to give to someone looking for RV insurance?
A: Be honest and truthful about your plans, your needs, and what needs to be covered. An insurance agent can’t read your mind and has no idea if you plan to travel with that priceless piece of art, an expensive bike, or are going out of country.
Q: Is an RV considered a vehicle or a residence? Are contents covered or just the vehicle?
A: For many policies, the RV is covered off of the RV insurance and any personal property inside the RV would be extended from your home insurance policy. In the case you have no home or renters policy and the RV is your only home, you would want to talk with your insurance company to make sure they add personal property to your policy and that it would be covered if a loss occurred in your RV.
Q: What are some of the biggest mistakes you see people make in terms of RV/motorhome/camper insurance coverage?
A: Not checking with your insurance carrier to see how your policy works in the event of a claim. Not all insurers who cover RVs, camping trailers, or motorhomes are designed to cover them if they are your primary residence.
It is important to check with your carrier to find out if they provide personal liability coverage and coverage for your contents. Additional living expense (money to live somewhere else while your trailer/motorhome is being repaired) is another important consideration if this is your primary home.
Another important question to ask is, “What kind of towing/road service coverage does my policy provide?” A tow for an RV can become expensive quickly. A robust towing coverage can be a huge plus.
Q: What insurance considerations should you be thinking of if you are looking to sell your home and become a full-time RVer? How would typical “homeowner’s liability” work for something like a dog bite or a fire or theft?
A: Personal liability is an important (and usually relatively inexpensive) coverage that would want to continue carrying. This shouldn’t be confused with the automobile liability (bodily injury, property damage, uninsured, and underinsured motorist coverage) which you are required by law to carry in order to operate your vehicle on public roads.
Ideally, your liability limits would be greater than or equal to your net worth. Personal liability traditionally will cover defense costs and damages for dog bites. Though some policies exclude certain breeds and have a reduced limit for dog bite claims. This is another good reason to talk with your company to confirm what your policy will cover.
Q: How is full-time nomadic RV insurance affected as you move between states, or other countries (travel to Canada, for example)?
A: Again, it comes back to your policy. Insurance is regulated differently in each state and it will be up to your policy contract.
Q: What additional coverage should people consider that would not fall under a typical policy?
A: Most home insurance policies settle losses on a replacement cost basis. This means that if there is a loss, the insurance company will replace the item at today’s cost and not depreciate the item based on its age. Most auto insurance companies settle on an actual cash value basis. Actual cash value is not as desirable as the insurance company will pay what your “used” item was worth.
Some companies will settle trailers/motorhomes on a replacement cost basis. This coverage may only be available for the first several model years but it is worth asking about as it can make a significant difference at claim time.
For expensive items, such as jewelry, art, expensive bikes, ATVs, etc, you should disclose these items to your agent so they can determine if you might need additional insurance riders for these expensive items.
Q: What discounts might be available?
A: Depending on the type of policy, your credit rating and driving record are still major factors that determine the rate. In addition, discounts may be available for things like garaging location or multiple policy bundling (ie home, life, auto).
Q: How is liability handled for things like injuries resulting from someone tripping on the picnic table at your RV spot (that isn’t yours, but may or may not be part of a formal campground)? Bear damage?
A: This is another example of why you want to carry personal liability coverage. People can sue you for many reasons…even for things you don’t feel you are responsible for.
The job of your personal liability insurance is to defend you against lawsuits, frivolous or legitimate. Bear damage losses would be covered as long as you carry comprehensive coverage on your auto policy.
Q: If there is a total loss or someone steals your RV and it is your primary residence, what would be covered?
A: Again, this comes back to the type of policy you carry. As long as you carry comprehensive coverage, the theft of your RV would be covered. As long as you elected to include personal property on your policy, contents would be covered too.
Q: What other recommendations would you give to people when they are looking to find a policy for either a full-time RVer or recreational RVer?
A: Another “auto” related coverage is personal injury protection (PIP) or med pay (depending on your state). If you carry a high deductible on your health insurance plan, having increased medical payments coverage on your auto policy can be valuable. The medical payments coverage will only pay if there is an auto-related injury but is an option worth exploring.
Check with your insurance agent to ask about their coverage options for your RVing needs, or visit the consumer advocate website for a list of companies that offer insurance plans specifically for full-time RVers.
RVs are a great way to travel across the country, and owning one can provide extensive opportunities for your family. However, it is also a huge investment and as you know, it is a serious decision. Other than your usual maintenance fees, you also need to set funds aside for your RV’s insurance needs. There are a lot of factors to consider, and laws vary from state to state so it important to know the basics. This entails needing to know the type of insurance you are purchasing for your RV. Here are a few guidelines we’ve created to help you know you have the proper insurance.
This is a general requirement in every state, and it covers the same liability it would for any car. However, you would need a special insurance policy if you have an RV that falls under Class A or B (normally for motorhomes). The RV is most likely not under your immediate ownership, and different types of insurance policies are available, whether you are financing your RV or renting one.
#2. Comprehensive Coverage
This is a policy that insures a number of things, including theft, vandalism, and collision. When taking the comprehensive coverage to your RV, you should do thorough research on this topic. Different insurance companies have different packages, and you ought to go for the one that offers the best options. You also need to find out if there are deductible fees that the insurer would deduct from your total claim because most will have this deductible.
#3. Vacation Liability
This will apply if your RV is for recreational purposes. Suppose your RV is on a campsite or a park that is normally considered a temporary residence and someone is injured in the RV during vacation. Because of incidents like this possibly happening, you have to make sure you have vacation liability in your insurance policy.
#4. Full Replacement Cost Insurance
This covers your RV for a full reimbursement in the case that it is stolen. Normal comprehensive covers will pay a depreciated amount, meaning you will only receive what your car is worth at that time when it is being replaced. The best part about this coverage is that you will be reimbursed the full amount you paid for the RV during the initial purchase.
#5. Underinsured Motorist Coverage
This coverage insures uninsured motorist body injury. You and your passengers are covered for injuries that involve physical accidents, such as getting hit by a driver who either doesn’t have insurance or the insurance they have is not enough to cover your hospital bills. The same coverage can insure underinsured or uninsured motorist property damage.
Now that you know the types of insurance policies available to you, you need to know what is excluded. Although your insurer understands that you use the RV to travel across the country, most of them will not cover Mexico, in case you are planning to travel down there. Also, travel trailers, non-motorized units and campers are not included in the RV insurance coverage. You would have to take a separate policy, or discuss this with your insurer to advise you accordingly.
7. How to Choose the Coverage
Assuming you just purchased your RV and have no idea about the insurance policy coverage available to you, the above listed are a good place to start. Similarly, you need to involve your agent who will advise you on which are the best coverage depending on your needs, travels, model, capacity, and weight. You can choose a national insurance carrier, a local insurance carrier, or an insurance carrier specializing in RVs.
8. Insurance Rates
Insurance rates for RVs can be hard to estimate since you can make your own customizations to the vehicle. However, it is good to familiarize yourself with the rates and quotations from the big and small companies. Identify the one with the best competitive rates and offer more for the same premium. Finally, make sure you read through the policy before you sign and make a payment. There might be some hidden clauses that you need to know.
Buying and finding out which RV is best for you may seem like a daunting process – and it can be – if you don’t put an adequate amount of research into it. Normally, researching isn’t the most exciting phase of investing, but when it comes to RVs, that’s not the case. Here, we’ll help you identify different resources to get you started in your research.
Investigating Travel Lifestyles
No two travelers are the same. Some people love to explore new cities and cultures, some like to stay at campgrounds, and others like to camp alone in the middle of the wilderness. Believe it or not, how you like to travel will greatly impact what you’ll be traveling in. For example:
Small RVs are great for camping incognito. They’re easy to tow or drive and are adept at fitting into small spaces or hard-to-reach areas. Some are even small enough that you can camp overnight in a city parking spot!
Mid-sized RVs perfectly harmonize space and convenience. They’re fully-equipped with everything you need to feel comfortable on the road, yet are still compact enough to be manageable. They’re good for long-term travel plans, as their size offers plenty of room for gear and guests, while the moderate size makes them less exhausting to drive than larger RVs.
Large RVs offer the most in space in luxury. They’re perfect for families who don’t want to compromise the comforts of home while on the road. In fact, some luxury RVs have more amenities than a high-end hotel, including dishwashers, fireplaces, outdoor entertainment centers, and more!
Resources For Researching RVs
RVing101 is a section of our site that helps you get a grip on the basics and lingo of RVing.
RV.net is a wonderful online community of RVers from across the country. You can find links to owners’ clubs for specific RVs, read discussions about different types of RVs, drop by the blog for vacation ideas and technical advice, and more. It’s an excellent resource for anything and everything RV-related.
RV shows are a great way to check out the best new RVs and RV technology, though some shows have older RVs as well. You’ll get a chance to tour hundreds of RVs in person, speak with factory representatives, and meet other RVers. Just don’t get pressured into buying if you’re not ready! RVshare’s blog has a wealth of information on RV shows in states across the nation.
Renting an RV is the best way to try out different RVs. You’ll get a feel for how the RV’s layout and size work for you, in addition to getting some driving practice! RVshare is a peer-to-peer marketplace, where you’ll work directly with the owner of the RV throughout the process. You can check out their inventory of RV Rentals, or of course you can always Shop For New and Used RVs on our website.