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Hi All,

This year will be my first winter full timing. I'm looking for a place to park it for a few months during the winter. Here is what I am looking for:

Someplace cold but not freezing temps

Someplace I can go play in the snow where I don't have to drive very far

Someplace that doesn't cost an arm and a leg per month to stay

I don't want to go where all the snowbirds go (can't get in anyway)

I am thinking maybe Utah?? Idaho? I don't know.

 

So anybody know of any places like this?? Thanks!!!

I am also ok with volunteering somewhere maybe for a spot to stay? I am a Jane of all trades!

 

Edited by spower

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You may have a challenge to meet all of those criteria. I don't know of anywhere that fits them all. Utah can get very cold and there will be times that you only need to step outside to play in the snow. Phoenix area probably comes the closest, except that you will be far from alone there as it is the heart of snowbird country. I suspect that your best answer would be to volunteer for a site at one of our national wildlife refuges as most of them do use some volunteers. I suggest that you look through the areas you may be interested in spending the winter and contact the refuges in that area. In our years as RV volunteers, the largest RV park that we saw had 16 sites and the average was probably 2 sites. 

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Tucson, AZ is the place for you.  Nice winter temps and an easy drive up Mt. Lemmon for snow and even skiing.

Or... stay in Cottonwood, AZ and you can do a quick drive to Flagstaff for skiing.

Or... stay on the northern edge of Albuquerque and an easy drive to Santa Fe for skiing.  We've done that.

Or... stay in Cedar City, UT and drive to Brian Head for skiing and snow play.

 

Edited by 2gypsies

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53 minutes ago, 2gypsies said:

Tucson, AZ is the place for you.  Nice winter temps and an easy drive up Mt. Lemmon for snow and even skiing.

Or... stay in Cottonwood, AZ and you can do a quick drive to Flagstaff for skiing.

Or... stay on the northern edge of Albuquerque and an easy drive to Santa Fe for skiing.  We've done that.

Or... stay in Cedar City, UT and drive to Brian Head for skiing and snow play.

 

Tucson is out, that is snowbird country and RV parks are real expensive. 

The other places sound great but I worry about the freezing temps at night and my RV. I am mainly worried about my fridge and how it would handle the freezing temps, it is in a slide out.

 

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Take a look at New Mexico from Albuquerque South. Escapees has a park in Deming and a coop park in Lakewood. There are also opportunities in Alamogordo and Las Cruces with higher elevations near by in Ruidoso and  Cloudcroft with National Forest lands nearby.

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You're going to have a hard time finding a place where it's cold but not freezing overnight.  Utah and Idaho are out for sure.  Arizona is your best bet. Even southern New Mexico has freezing nights - been there.  Arizona has very nice state parks and also has BLM boondocking land - even in Tucson.

https://www.campendium.com/snyder-hill

Truthfully, I think you should just concentrate on a warm place for winter if you're concerned about freezing nights.

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51 minutes ago, spower said:

I am mainly worried about my fridge and how it would handle the freezing temps, it is in a slide out.

We have stayed in areas where the temperatures have gone below freezing overnight with no problems. Everything I have heard/read about problems with gas absorption refrigerators in slides has been about overheating in high temperatures due to the location of the top vent on the side rather than in the roof which allows better ventilation.

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I was going to suggest somewhere in California until I got to the “not an arm and a leg” bit. I can think of a number of places that would meet your criteria (close to snow but not freezing) but they are all expensive.

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41 minutes ago, trailertraveler said:

We have stayed in areas where the temperatures have gone below freezing overnight with no problems. Everything I have heard/read about problems with gas absorption refrigerators in slides has been about overheating in high temperatures due to the location of the top vent on the side rather than in the roof which allows better ventilation.

Absorption refrigerators will stop cooling if the ambient temperature inside of the cooling unit falls so low that the heat source can not cause the refrigerant in the boiler to boil off as a gas. I have found that mine usually didn't experience problems until it got down around 20° and if there were problems you can help by covering about half of the air entry grill to keep the temperature warmer. In very cold I also placed a 60 watt incandescent light in the lower section to keep it warm. 

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5 hours ago, trailertraveler said:

 

 

6 hours ago, trailertraveler said:

Take a look at New Mexico from Albuquerque South. Escapees has a park in Deming and a coop park in Lakewood. There are also opportunities in Alamogordo and Las Cruces with higher elevations near by in Ruidoso and  Cloudcroft with National Forest lands nearby.

Trailertraveler is correct.  Those areas in New Mexico are not typical snowbird destinations but there are some that go there for the same reasons you mention.  We stayed in Alpine, TX last winter and the weather was cool and mild (4500') with only one dusting, but nowhere near the snowy regions.  Las Cruces and Deming are a little lower in altitude than here, but nearer to Cloudcroft and Ruidoso (7000'-8000') and the wintery weather.

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We did fine with nights as low as 20° as long as daytime temperatures went above freezing. It's hard to do winter sports when every day goes above freezing, though.  I'd chose park at the bottom of a mountain and drive up for daytime activities.

Linda

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19 hours ago, trailertraveler said:

We have stayed in areas where the temperatures have gone below freezing overnight with no problems. Everything I have heard/read about problems with gas absorption refrigerators in slides has been about overheating in high temperatures due to the location of the top vent on the side rather than in the roof which allows better ventilation.

My fridge has a fan that starts up when it gets warm. I do want to camp in the cold, but just not sure how the fridge would handle it. My previous trailer I had parked at my house plugged into shore power. Left the fridge running. It got really cold out and snowed. The fridge froze up and shut off.

I'm wondering if I am in a pretty cold area and have the fridge on propane if it will be ok?  I have everything else covered for camping in the cold except the fridge. Maybe I'm over thinking it?

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18 hours ago, Kirk W said:

Absorption refrigerators will stop cooling if the ambient temperature inside of the cooling unit falls so low that the heat source can not cause the refrigerant in the boiler to boil off as a gas. I have found that mine usually didn't experience problems until it got down around 20° and if there were problems you can help by covering about half of the air entry grill to keep the temperature warmer. In very cold I also placed a 60 watt incandescent light in the lower section to keep it warm. 

Ahh! This is what I was wondering about. The air entry is the top cover? What would you cover it with? I like the light (or something) in the lower area for warmth. Thanks!!

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Do compression refrigerators have problems with cold weather the way absorption refrigerators do? Could you use the fridge as an ice chest by not powering it at all?

Linda Sand

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2 hours ago, spower said:

Ahh! This is what I was wondering about. The air entry is the top cover? What would you cover it with? I like the light (or something) in the lower area for warmth. Thanks!!

Air is drawn into into the lower cover and rises as it warms, exiting either through a roof vent or an upper wall vent if the refrigerator is in a slide. If it gets extremely cold I would partially cover the lower vent, but we've been in temps down to the lower teens and never had an issue with the refrigerator not cooling properly. 

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7 hours ago, spower said:

The air entry is the top cover? What would you cover it with? I like the light (or something) in the lower area for warmth.

The ventilation of the cooling unit is by convection flow, so it enters the bottom, is slowly heated by the cooling process of the refrigerator, then exits out the top. The fan you have is there to increase air flow if the interior temperature gets too high to avoid a loss of cooling. In very cold weather the problem becomes one of too much heat removal so that the heat source (either propane or electric) is not able to cause the liquid to boil and change to a gas. I strongly suggest that you take some time to visit this link on how absorption refrigerators work, as i think it will help you understand. 

In very cold weather, the air entering through these vents is too much due to the ambient temperature, which in my experience could occur most any time that temperatures fall below 20° and stay that way for more than a few hours and/or if it is very windy. I have seen it cool with temperatures down into the teens, but had ours fail to cool when it was in the low 20's with a hard wind blowing on the back of the refrigerator. What I used to do is to cover 1 or 2 of the vent slots with tape when very cold weather was predicted. In most cases that is enough as it keeps the temperatures inside at a point that it will operate properly. When staying in the RV in the high Rocky Mountains to go hunting, we used to cover the two bottom vent openings with a piece of fiberglass insulation that we made up for that purpose before leaving to go up there. I have seen a incandescent light also used in the back, but have not needed it myself. 

621156pw_1.jpg

 

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My compressor fridge is not vented to outside. So if living space gets too cold the compressor just turns off. I would be wary of an absorption fridge that was not ventilated. Be careful.

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