We’ve been living in our fifth wheel in a mobile home/RV park in Apache Junction, Arizona, since early April. It’s been a nice transition for us to get used to our new home, which we love, and learn where we hid things we need. We’ve been getting organized and actually found more things we could part with, which resulted in a few more trips to Goodwill to drop off donations.
We hung some pictures to make our place feel more homey. Command Strips come in quite handy for RV living — and they’re available in a number of styles and uses. We found ones to hang a shower squeegee, a towel, our PlayStation controller, our TV remote control, our kitchen scrubbies, belts, and more.
Prepping the Exterior
The outside still needed some attention too. Bob found homes for our belongings that go in what we call “the cellar,” the wall-to-wall storage area in the front of the RV underneath the bedroom.
He wired the solar panels and got them working (they’re loving the hot Arizona sun) and even installed circuit breakers so we can shut them off if needed.
We measured the height of our rig so we can be sure to steer clear of any low bridges. We also got a truckers’ phone app, Co-Pilot, in which we enter our vehicle height, and the app routes us to avoid low-clearance obstacles.
Although our June transatlantic cruise was canceled, we still got a cruising sensation every time one of us walked around the rig. So, we decided to buy and install a kingpin stabilizer. True to its name, it helped stabilize the trailer and also added a level of security, as it prevents anyone from stealing our home. (They’d really have to know what they were doing to steal the rig anyway.)
We gave Gulliver a much-needed bath. We also gave him a hood protector, which will prevent dings from rocks, potentially deflect some bugs, and make him look really cool.
Our U.S. map is hung and ready to be filled with the states we visit. Although we’ve both been to the majority of the states already, we’ll only fill in the map with states Gulliver takes us to.
There’s not much left to do before we’re ready to truly hit the road and leave the heat — at least until November. We plan to be back in the Valley of the Sun November through February so Bob can help with annual heavy maintenance on the B-25 WWII bomber at the Commemorative Air Force. We also plan to attend ground school there to be able to tour with the Maid in the Shade next summer like in years past.
For the first stop of our journey, we plan to head to Northern Arizona, gradually working our way to Eugene, Oregon, to visit our firstborn and deliver some things to him. We plan to arrive in Massachusetts, where Bob’s from, Aug. 1. We’re looking forward to our cross-country trip. Cooler temperatures, here we come.
This is the travel blog of full-time RVers Bob and Lana Gates and our truck, Gulliver, and fifth wheel, Tagalong.