Read Howard Rogers Camping Experience with a Fifth Wheel.
It was a cool afternoon in mid September of 2003 in the mountains of northern Arizona. We had just set up camp for what was destined to be our last camping trip of the season, and, unfortunately for our miniature Schnauzer, Sassie. We had all the windows unzipped in our pop-up camper and a gentle breeze was blowing thru the windows. Sassie had found just the right spot to lie up on the bed where the warm sunlight shone in and she could still view all the activities outside. With the children playing and campfire going she would occasionally wag her tail in approval, obviously wanting to join in but knowing, in her frail condition, she just couldn’t. She was happy and content to just be part of this camping weekend.
Sassie was a true camper! You see, I also had a small camper I pulled behind my Goldwing. Whenever I was hooked up for a weekend campout with friends, Sassie wanted to go. She would jump up on my lap on the Motorcycle and sit on a small platform I had made for her. She was the queen of the road when we traveled that way and got many a thumbs up from passing motorists. She absolutely loved it!!
With the children all grown we have since upgraded to a fifth wheel. I still ride my Bike and still have that small camper, but none of the dogs we’ve had since Sassie seem very eager to jump up on my lap!?! In fact, they often back away when I’m sitting on the bike and call them. Hmmm … maybe they don’t like my helmet.
Anyway, the fifth wheel brought a whole new adventure for us. We didn’t seem to mind the rain as much as we did with the pop-up, especially when breaking down camp and closing up for the ride home. We noticed how little packing and unpacking was required on the fifth wheel vs the pop-up. We noticed a lot of things including how much more comfortable it seemed in the fifth wheel. Hmmmmm
We invited my sister out from the east coast for a weeklong camp trip taking in the Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Zion National Park and Las Vegas. At one point she called me and asked if the trailer had a bathroom or if we needed to use the Campground restrooms!! … Novice …! Mind you … this was a 38’ triple slide fifth wheel with all the bells and whistles … WE WERE NOT ROUGHING IT! I informed her that the bathroom, while adequate, may not quite be up to parr for what she is accustomed to. Boy was she pleasantly surprised when she walked in. The memory most vivid is not of the places we visited, but of a moment when she and my wife were sitting side by side in recliners toasting with a glass of wine, in front of the fireplace watching Lucille Ball in “The Long Long Trailer” on the TV.
These, my friends, are memories. I am fortunate to have traveled to many places and to have experienced many, many things where memories remain so vivid. Most of these have been travels that included camping, sightseeing and, honestly, just spending quality time with friends and family. (Hey … pets are family too!! Right?) I remember these trips like it was yesterday and smile every time I think about that dog lying in the sunlight looking so thoroughly relaxed. Sassie passed just a few weeks after that trip, but the memories remain ever so engraved in our minds.