As RVers we have pulled our trailer across the US several times, and traversed thousands of miles in the US northwest. When we travel without our trailer were are always looking for the next great place to stop and visit on the next trip.
On a recent non-RV trip we noted a large number of RVs parks full or all most full in the winter, not your prime RVing season. While in Bend Oregon, we stopped at a very high end park were we often stay to ask about some some spring and summer specials. We are shocked to see how many trailers in this high end RV park had cold weather skirts and large 200 gallon LP tanks next to the trailers.
Chatting with the maintenance man, he said the RV Park has been 70% full. “The best winter season ever,” he said. I ask his opinion for the insurgence in winter RVing. He though it was the down economy, people out of there homes, living in their RV units.
The Bend August 2013 unemployment rate is 9.9 percent, down from almost 16% in 2009. The trend is slowly down ward, but well above the “the Obama jiggered US” rate of 7.3% and Oregon rate of 8.1% While this is a snapshot of Bend, we saw many other nearly full RV parks, with large LP tanks, not the kind you haul around, parked next to the travel trailer and 5th wheels.
Many of the low end parks, have always has a collection of long term patrons along the back fence with their flower pots and wooden porches attached the the trailer. But, the number is growing long timers are spilling out into the main sections of low and high end RV parks. The attitudes and interest of these users are not the same a vacationers, who are interested in sharing road trip adventures stories with other friendly RVers. This is changing the atmosphere in the RV parks. It may be time for some of these RV Parks to change their name to Trailer Park. This maybe their survival strategy as the slow economy is reducing the number of RV travelers, who are willing to rent a vacation space. Two trends working to turn RV parks into Trailer Parks.
A small concern is how these RV Park homesteaders might impact site availability on our future trips this spring and summer. A larger concern is how to get the economy moving and these adventures seeking RVers back on the road.