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Old 02-19-2006, 11:22 AM   #1
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WOW! I can't believe it, but we are actually removing accessories from the Cobalt we are buying. After talking to a dealer yesterday, he said we don't even want to leave the PU for an hour or two with the awning out because of what the wind will do to it. That got us to thinking; how badly do we even need an awning? If it rains, (which rarely occurs besides the daily 30 minute afternoon thundershower in the Colorado mountains) we either jump in the TV and go touring or we relax in the PU. We are stepping up from tent camping and want to keep it simple. Man, it is easy to start over-complicating our setup to the point we will be spending an hour to pitch and break camp just like tenting. Our goal is to be able to decide on a whim to take off, hitch up the PU and take off, set up camp in 15 minutes and be ready to play!
Please help me with feedback on how useful an awning is to you or how (and when) you don't need an awning. Thanks!
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Old 02-19-2006, 11:22 AM   #2
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WOW! I can't believe it, but we are actually removing accessories from the Cobalt we are buying. After talking to a dealer yesterday, he said we don't even want to leave the PU for an hour or two with the awning out because of what the wind will do to it. That got us to thinking; how badly do we even need an awning? If it rains, (which rarely occurs besides the daily 30 minute afternoon thundershower in the Colorado mountains) we either jump in the TV and go touring or we relax in the PU. We are stepping up from tent camping and want to keep it simple. Man, it is easy to start over-complicating our setup to the point we will be spending an hour to pitch and break camp just like tenting. Our goal is to be able to decide on a whim to take off, hitch up the PU and take off, set up camp in 15 minutes and be ready to play!
Please help me with feedback on how useful an awning is to you or how (and when) you don't need an awning. Thanks!
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Old 02-19-2006, 12:49 PM   #3
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I, too, have moved up (?) from tent camping a year ago!

There have been many times we have not taken the time to extend the awing. No problem! Then there have been occasions when we needed shade from the summer sun which made all the difference in the world. When ya need it, ya need it and if ya ain't got it ya could be pretty sorry.

The awing isn't much use in a rain storm, only if you want to reach outside, quickly, to get something out of the coolchest, etc.

Doesn't the awning come as standard equipment? Glad mine did. How much would you save by not buying?
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Old 02-19-2006, 01:47 PM   #4
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If you can absorb the expense, I'd keep the awning and here's my reasons why (as I recall from my "pop-up" days):
<UL TYPE=SQUARE>
<LI>It can help keep everyone dry while you fumble for keys and open the door.
<LI>It gives you a dry space for taking off wet items and muddy shoes before entering the camper.
<LI>It can help shield the pop-up from the morning or afternoon sun (assuming the pop-up is facing in one of these directions), thus keeping it cooler.
<LI>If your pop-up isn't equipped with A/C (ours wasn't) you can usually leave the window under the awning open for ventilation when it's raining (We yould even put a fan in the window to draw air in).
<LI>If it's raining while you're making or breaking camp, you can (if there's room to do this in your campsite) back your tow vehicle right up to the awning so you can load/unload without geting everything wet.
<LI>...and, of course, shade from the sun when you're sitting outside.[/list]
Are these enough reasons? I can probably think of some more.
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Old 02-19-2006, 01:57 PM   #5
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To; DoubleD;

AS stated above' to need it and not have it would be a waste of good outdoor enjoyment, whether bright sun or rain. It doesn't take but minutes to raise or lower awning. Some awnings can have a screen room added which would probably double the closed in space and if you had one the need for lowering awning in semi-bad weather would most likely noy be necessary because screen room is anchored to awning on top and to ground below. I don't know if this is possible with your set-up, but if it is, a tv. your coolers,and anything else that would be in the way.

Try it , you may like it.

Thanks====== AJBJRVERS
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Old 02-19-2006, 04:27 PM   #6
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I had an awning on my pop-up and was extremely glad I did.

There are lots of anchoring sytems that you can effectively use without complicating things too much. In fact, I was able to secure my Coleman/Fleetwood awning more securely than I can my fancy-pants Carefree of Colorado on my 5th wheel.
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Old 02-19-2006, 04:43 PM   #7
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We use a 10ft square EZ-UP freestanding canopy (got it at Wal-Mart). Push it up tight against the pop-up. A little rain dribbles down between the pop-up and canopy but not a big deal. I use pet tie-outs (screw in the ground type) with bungee cords to secure it to the ground. The bungee cords act like shock cords letting the canopy "shift" a little in a heavy breeze but not blow over. The nice thing about the free standing canopy it that we sometimes end up in a site where the picnic table is not only situated a off from the ideal spot of the pop-up but is also immovable. I have the awning with the gable ends (long peak). So when the original awning got old and trashed, I bought a 10X12 heavyweight tarp. I tie it on with ball-bungees. We can also use the canopy for other uses.
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Old 02-19-2006, 08:11 PM   #8
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You have a lot of yes reasons, and we agree.We bought our Coleman in Sept of 98. We went out at least one weekend a month and 2 - 3 weeks a year. ( We didn't believe in paying for something in storage.) I would put the awning up unless we were in a big wind storm. To secure it I used 2 ratchet type tie down straps. I put a tent peg at a slight angle at the bottom of the 2 outside poles. Looped the tie down strap around the support bar, and pulled it down to the tent peg. It would not pull up. Then I took 4 of the big clamps the spring loaded ones and used them, 2 on a side to hold the awning to the outside cross poles. We never had a problem and didn't worry when we left for the day. I would not be without a awning no matter, another thing to think about is resale value. Awnings and air conditioners, I say a must. because you wont always be in a cool place.
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Old 02-20-2006, 09:18 AM   #9
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Guess I'm going to make it unanimous; get it as an option. An awning has many benefits, most of which you might not realize until you've owned the unit for a while. Like the others, I some how doubt you would end up regretting it if you did get one, but I suspect you would if you didn't.
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Old 02-21-2006, 12:01 AM   #10
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Hey all, thanks for all of the great feedback! Camping in Colorado is different than many states. Heat is rarely a problem, getting warm is usually the issue. Rarely am I seeking shade when around camp, because I am usually only around in the morning and evening, off fishing, touring or 4WDing (or all of the above) during the day. Even so, we camp at 8000-10000 feet altitude and don't get too hot often. At that altitude, a breeze will cool the PU in minutes even before dark.
That being said, you have all provided me with very valuable feedback and I really appreciate it.
Now you got me to thinking, should I get one of those Carefree models? The Carefree factory is 30 miles up the road from home. I spoke with my dealer today and we agreed to make a deal. Although I hoped for a better price, I am getting the unit for $5595 less $500 for the tent trade in after tax. At 4.2% tax, that is $5830-$500=$5330 with tax. I will probably get the RVQue for the $200, also, even though I love my tabletop charcoal grill. He said they don't get them in with the canopy, so I can get it from him or not. It is $220 for the canopy at the dealer, Carefree models are only slightly more.
I checked Peco and they want $5100 without A/C and with a furnace, so my guy in Colorado is fairly close. I am not going to get the unit from Peco in Atlanta to Denver for any less, and the 2 other Front Range Cobalt dealers quoted me $6795 and $6195 plus extras.
But, back to my question. Since I can get the unit without the canopy from the dealer, is it worth it to spend a little extra and get a Carefree unit?
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Old 02-23-2006, 04:35 PM   #11
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Yes indeed You will be glad to have the awning If you use good common scence when setting up and stake that puppy down allowing enough angle for runoff incase of rain And you need to always beaware of the local forcast as you can avoid problems by stowing it away before thebig winds hit other wise grab a comfy chair a brewski if you prefer and a paper and enjoy watching the world go by good luck
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