Campground of the Year

We stay at KOAs. But only when we don’t have a choice. I find most of them to be too expensive for the experience which is generally very tight sites, gravel pads and, for big rigs like ours, tight access and issues with clearing trees.

Every year, KOA selects a campground of the year. For 2018, the winner is the Delaware Water Gap/Pocono Mountain KOA Holiday.

This would be one of their sites:

If that was the campground of the year, I was curious to see one of the worst KOA campgrounds. I didn’t have to work that hard to find it. Acton/Los Angeles North KOA. A typical review on tripadvisor:

Disgusting rat hole of a campground

This is the worst place ever… with the sewer smell from the septic tank… ants crawling all over the walls and toilets in the bathrooms and the laundry room is a joke and the prices this place charges you can go up to the rv resort on Sierra Highway for the same price you have cell phone service and WiFi and a beautiful view of the valley and a swimming pool that is taken care of properly …. so people if you are passing thru the Acton area this is not the place to stay. Again go to the rv resort on Sierra Highway for top of the line camping experience

Pretty brutal comments all around.

The sites there appear to have no boundaries. They look to be offered on an unpaved parking lot with very little separation.

It makes me appreciate some of the beautiful spots we have found in our travels to date. Especially in the Petoskey, Michigan area.

And I am certain that we will find many more beautiful spots for our coach in the years to come. If that means the occasional stay in a more rustic KOA setting in transit, so be it. All part of the experience.

RV Parks Attract Criminals?

I guess it depends on whether you think the people in the RV park are criminals or whether the type of RV park, such as the one pictured above, might attract criminals to commit a break and enter in such an upscale setting.

I came across this article on the web where a proposal for an RV park met with substantial resistance from the community of Kyle, Texas near Austin. The developer claimed that the RV park would consist of 50 to 55 sites for upscale coaches that start in the $300,000 range and that the park was targeting vacationing families and retirees.

Here are some of the more interesting comments made in the article:

…residents from the Kensington Trails subdivision spoke during the item’s public hearing period, with many suggesting that the park would attract crime into the area.

…those who live in RV parks typically don’t “connect” with the city they’re living in.

…a 13-year police officer, said RV parks see a higher number of transients, sex offenders and those who can’t otherwise find housing and this increases the likelihood of crime-related incidents these areas.

The zoning was denied.

Twice.

I wonder if the developer showed photos of upscale motorcoaches like the one pictured below?

I suspect Kyle’s Planning and Zoning Commission was thinking that an upscale RV might look more like this one:

Hearthside Grove Sites

I wanted to post some of my images of the sites at Hearthside Grove. Not all of the sites look like these ones, but most of them do. In a way, it reminds me of how Disney might choose to design a luxury motorcoach resort. Everything here was just so, well, perfect!

Retirement Card

We don’t have one. A retirement card that is. At least not yet.

When we left Hearthside Grove, we wanted to stay in touch with our new friends. Email is a way of keeping in touch. Our blog is another way of keeping in touch.

Most of our friends had retirement cards. Looks like we will need to make some up as well for the future.

Homeward Bound

Our last day at Hearthside Grove. The weather for the past two weeks has been incredible. Lots of sunshine and very warm temperatures.

The sense of community here has been far different than I imagined. Friendships formed quickly. Dinners, day trips, get togethers, and connecting with people as we walked around the resort.

Ken and Carol, Lou and Pam, Dave and Daphne, Moe and Cindy, Barry and Iris, Gary and Suzan, Rita. These were a few of the many people we connected with during our time here.

Most of the people we have met are retired. Not surprising given that we are vacationing in mid-September. And all have been very successful in their careers. Such amazing life stories.

It has given us a glimpse into what our retirement will look like and we are very excited about beginning that part of our journey.

When we said good-bye to one of our new friends, she described Hearthside Grove as a paradise. And she is right. This has been such an amazing experience for us. We would certainly buy a lot but for the location. As Canadians, we need to winter south.

That said, many of our friends here at Hearthside also have lots in California at Desert Shores and at Motorcoach Country Club. That is where they winter.

We are planning to spend a few months down there at one, or perhaps both, of those resorts in the early part of 2019. I hope we will see many of our new friends again.