Come to the Island – 7 great reasons to float on an island.

As you know we are social campers, not back country hard core campers. We love to gather with friends and family at a lake and hope for sun. This usually involves several women blowing up individual flotation bed and paddling several feet into the lake. I realize this sound terribly laborious and you must marvel at all the obstacles we have endured.img_5004

  1. How can so many women chat while continuing to floating away from each other?
  2. How can your drinks still be full by the time you reach your destination?
  3. Doesn’t the lake keep pushing us back to shore, resulting in constant paddling.

img_7566You are correct, we needed to find a solution. Sure enough the solution arrived. On our way to a camping trip in Osoyoos we stopped at Costco to pick up some steaks. As we wondered through the aisle we saw the solution,  right there, hanging from their ceiling. Now if you are familiar with Costco you will know how big something has to be if it is hanging from a Costco ceiling. This flotation is huge, but we were heading to 40 degree weather and impulse shopping has never been our strong suite so $250 later we left Costco with 4 steaks and an over sized flotation the could house a small town.

Was it worth it? I think you can tell from the photos that is solved many of our serious flotation issues.

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Pros and there are manyimg_7778

  1. It seats 9 comfortably: we could finally visit without the stress of floating apart.
  2. All the chairs have cup holders: necessary when social camping.
  3. It has two cooler spots, we use one for drinks and one for empties: saving the constant trips in for refills.
  4. The center netting is very helpful for climbing in and across: very helpful as our ages seem to advance quicker than our drinks empty.
  5. The swim grid makes climbing on much easier: picture a seal approaching at Sea World to get a fish, that’s us trying to get back to our beverages after a swim.
  6. It comes with an anchor bag: keeps us from floating back to shore unnecessarily
  7. The huge size and bright colour makes you visible in the water: great for when you need to head back out after a bathroom break.

Cons

  • It is very, very, very heavy: It takes a team of sober people to get it into and out of the lakeimg_7774
  • It will never fit back in the box: I am not sure how they got it in in the first place, but trust me, it wont go back in.
  • The size makes it hard to inflate and deflate: more than a foot pump is needed for this job.
  • You will lose track of time: once on the island only trips in for more drinks and bathroom breaks will keep you connected to land.

We have used it on two trips this year and we love it. We have kept it tied to the dock during one trip giving an entire new meaning to lazy but it was easier for bathroom breaks and new arrivals to come aboard.

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If you spend any time on the lake in the summer and have the room to store it, I would say get one. The fun times and endless laughs make all the over-sized efforts worth it.

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Ice Ice Baby – camping with a portable ice maker!

69E4B2FB-2077-4479-97B6-9767AC1FF847-959-000003BD23F350F1The older I get, the more conveniences I seem to acquire and a portable ice maker is just another example. We are social campers, meaning, we mostly camp with other families and are often in private campgrounds with hook ups. It also means we go through a lot of beverages!

Regardless of our camp set up we like to keep our beverages in a cooler packed with ice. Nothing says camping like digging around in freezing water and being rewarded with a cold beer. Keeping that cooler full of ice during a hot summer trip is really the only stress we have camping so we decided to buy a portable ice maker. I do agree, if this is our biggest stress, then life is great!

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Gojac gear review by Campsite Correspondent Shannon Gibbs

THE CAMPSITE BLOG

I was very excited when The Campsite asked me to review the “Gojac” so I quickly went online to do some research. The product is marketed as a jacket that converts to a backpack, saving you from packing a mid weight jacket on your hike. I was interested to see where my personal items would be stored when I moved from a backpack to a jacket, and how easy the conversion would be.

When my Gojac arrived I was impressed with the number of pockets, and the weight and quality of the fabric. I have conservative taste so the bold zippers and bright yellow patch were not my style but other women could love them. The “backpack” is sewn onto the back of the Gojac and thats where the straps store when it’s a jacket. The jacket has a mesh liner for breathability and comfort. It has snug wrist…

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Pro Packing Cubes – a simple product to save valuable RV space!

downloadPro Packing Cubes asked me to try out and review their product in an RV setting. I had never heard of packing cubes but anything that helps organize my RV is of interest to me. I set out to research their product before deciding if I would accept their offer.

It seems packing cubes are popular with travelers. They are soft sided nylon bags in varying sizes, designed to keep your clothes organized and compact. The product has a 4.5 stars to 5 star rating on Amazon.com which certainly indicates their customers are happy.

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RV Ovens – 10 solutions every camper should know!

I  have been researching tips for cooking and baking in an RV oven.  I no longer use my oven, mainly because my one and only experience was a disaster.  We were having a pot luck dinner and I volunteered to make roasted potatoes for 30. (I know, crazy idea, right!) I peeled and chopped, peeled and chopped, and then peeled and chopped some more. Once all the chopping was done I coated them with olive oil, seasoned them and separated them onto 3 trays.   Two went in my oven and one on the BBQ.

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Why tarp your RV? Valuable tips to make the right decision.

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We have yet to tarp our new RV

 

We are now into our second winter storing our RV and each year we debate whether we should buy an RV cover or not. When we had our tent trailer we did the unthinkable and covered it with a blue camping tarp. I can hear the collective gasp. What might surprise you is we did this for 10 years and not once did our trailer leak.  Adding to our inexperience, not once did we (get ready to gasp) reseal our seams or treat our roof. I know shocking!!! Continue reading

Cool Camping Couch that stores in a bag! Really?

While doing some research for my blog I came across this neat product.

http://lamzac.com

It comes out of the Neatherlands and is marketed as a hangout couch for camping, festivals or days at the beach. They claim it is easy to inflate and reduces down to a small storage bag. Sounds like a great addition for any outdoor enthusiast. They claim to ship anywhere in the world so would love to hear from those who have tried it.

Skyhooks: How to Tarp Your Site to Save Valuable Time.

imageI finally had a chance to use the set of Skyhooks that were sent to me in early August. I first introduced this product back in January when I found it online while doing research for my blog. It has since been my most searched post reaching over 7,000 viewers to date. With those kind of number I knew I really needed to try this product out and write a follow up review. Continue reading

DYI – how to build an RV Outdoor Shower Stall

One year of blogging and this article has been by far my most viewed post.  As I celebrate the end of the year I thought it would be worth reposting my top blogs.  Thanks for all your support.

We have only had our travel trailer for one camping season but have quickly realized that gray water is one of the biggest challenges, especially when dry camping. We didn’t  experience this problem in our tent trailer because we didn’t have hot water nor a holding tank. Now that we have both, I like the idea of showering at my site but with 2 teenagers and no hookups  the gray water will fill up quickly. The solution: an outdoor shower stall at the back of the trailer. The problem: finding a way to make it private.  I headed out to research this and here are my findings. Continue reading