RVing – January 2015 at the Florida RV Supershow
A couple months ago we decided to start towing our car behind our motorhome. I had been resisting the idea ever since we bought our coach in June 2013. It just looked like such a hassle. I thought if we had a smaller coach, on a smaller chassis, the driving would be easier and we would have an easier time running around in the areas we visit. I thought if we could sell our 32 foot coach and downsize to 24 or 26 feet maybe life would somehow be better. However, we didn’t get any serious calls from our craigslist ad so we made the decision to convert our MINI Cooper into a toad . A toad is RVer talk for a towed vehicle.
Allen Kelly, at Low Country RV in Beaufort did a beautiful job installing the base plate in our MINI. It’s hardly noticeable unless you’re looking for it. Thanks Allen!
Allen had our motor home on site so on January 2nd we drove the MINI to his shop. Allen showed us how to hook it up. We drove the motorhome back towing the MINI and loaded it for our trip south. We left the next day for Seminole-Lake Gliderport in Florida……here we are all hooked ready to head south…
I don’t know why I was so concerned. It was easy to tow….the experienced all said you don’t even know a car is back there. Actually, you really do know because every time you look at the rear view camera monitor, there it is. In fact the motorhome seemed a little more stable on the highway. We arrived at the gliderport in central Florida about 7 hours later and easily unhooked the car. Now we have a house and a car!
The weather was the only downer for the trip. It started warm but then the arctic blast was followed by many cloudy days with showers. Temperatures were not bad after the big cold front finally cleared out but soaring weather did not develop. I got one flight in. So, we went RV shopping on three different days. The big day was the trip to the Florida RV Super Show held in mid January every year at the Florida State Fairgrounds near Tampa. Last year’s paid attendance was over 57,000 for the 5 days. The largest RV show in the country.
Below is a photo I found online We may be down there in the crowd someplace….the caption under this photo said there are over 1300 RV’s on display…..if there are 1300 on display, there must be another 1000 or more camping there on the fairgrounds. They were stacked side by side as far as you could see driving into the fairgrounds parking areas.
I used my iPhone 6+ to shoot all the photos below
The crowd on opening day, Wednesday, was large ………..We looked at some smaller but upscale units like this one..
Although our 32 foot Class A coach has some disadvantages one thing we love is the roomy open feel…..it’s hard to give up and probably the main reason we decided to make our MINI into a toad. Although I might prefer not to tow a car, it is nice to have the space of a Class A and a car to drive too. Therefore, it’s no surprise that our favorite motor homes at the show were all Class A coaches 34 to 35 feet long. All are diesel pushers. Much larger coaches are probably even more popular but for us 34 feet provides all the space we need with some to spare. Our favorites were these three:
Maybe this one was Ronnie’s favorite …..Fleetwood Excursion – 35 feet
In second place……Allegro Open Road Red – 34 feet
My personal favorite is the Newmar Ventana LE – 34 feet
At those prices, you have to be crazy (or rich) to buy a new Class A motorhome…we’ll be waiting on the call that we have won the lottery. Listening to the many conversations around us there are a lot of people buying these coaches. While having lunch, we sat next to a couple that were telling another couple how they made the decision to become full-timers, another RVer’s term for people who no longer have a sticks and bricks house.
This was great fun…….worth the trip….. to be able to walk through all those magnificent motor homes. Almost as interesting was all the people watching….those RV lovers are a different breed. I guess that includes us.