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Old 09-09-2022, 07:19 PM   #71
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All this reminds me of something that happened several years ago. As I said, my wife and I have been camping many years. We got to our campground in our 34 ft TT being pulled by a Suburban and the desk person apologized because the only site they had was a tight angle among seasonal campers. We took it. We pulled up and as we got out to assess the situation, I noticed several guys laughing and setting their lawn chairs to watch. My wife took up her position and I got behind the wheel and backed right where we wanted it, first try. When I got out, one of those guys hollered over, " Damn, you guys are good." Practice makes Perfect!
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Old 09-09-2022, 07:48 PM   #72
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I have a couple.


2015, myself and a long time friend decided to go camping (with tents). I had to book the site a month in advance because everything was so booked up. We roll in, gorgeous day, warm, sunny, but they were calling for rain over the 2 nights booked so we bought a huge 40X20 tarp to cover both tents and the sitting area.



The winds and rain showed up the first night, all tarp ropes snapped, it fell onto my tent which promptly collapsed on me at 3am. Worst camping trip ever. The next day temps dropped to 40's and I sat in the running car with the wipers on contemplating my decisions.


Knowing I needed redemption I went back solo with my dog a few years later, no more tents, just a 4runner to sleep in. Weather stayed nice this time but like a fool I locked the doors before falling asleep. I awoke at 4am REALLY needing to pee, I slung the door open and now the alarm starts going off but it would turn off after about 20 seconds. I tried to open it again it went off again, then the ranger does a slow drive by. I reached through the window and grabbed my sleeping bag, spent the night on the picnic table.


My dog got to sleep by herself on the air mattress in the vehicle
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Old 09-09-2022, 09:10 PM   #73
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Fixed it for you.

Yes, ASL can be quite colorful. I've got a couple deaf friends so I've learned some "not safe for work" signs...
Thanks....typing when I'm tired.
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Old 09-10-2022, 03:49 AM   #74
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Sometimes it just happens. I remember one time I found my motor home very close to a large pine tree that I had somehow missed seeing. I never touched it. But it it sharpened my awareness.

Oh, among all you who have posted, I feel sure for some, there are incidents you don't really want to mention.
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Old 09-10-2022, 09:04 AM   #75
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It really isn't funny. Everyone has had a first time out. We've been out with all kinds of rigs and the first few times out can be frustrating and stressful, even for the experienced driver and guide. When we see folks struggling, we offer to help. We don't gawk and we certainly don't laugh. We've been in their shoes.
I totally agree with this statement. I offer to help if someone is having a problem. I just don't think it's appropriate to gawk at someone else's parking misfortune as they are already stressed to the max anyway. This only adds to the frustration of the moment. I can only imagine what I would feel like.
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Old 09-10-2022, 10:37 AM   #76
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Watched one a few days ago. Don't know if he was a newb or not. Bottom of the trailer was very clean so it could have been fresh off the dealer lot.

Killens Pond SP where the loops are laid out in a spiral fashion with a center of trees & sites on the outside like spokes in a wheel. Very easy to get in any of them. Go around the center hub till your trailer lines up with your site, then go straight back. It is that easy.

Nope, not for this guy. Nine times, that I counted, going back & forth before he got the smallish TT in the site.
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Old 09-10-2022, 07:35 PM   #77
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30 years later, I still tell this story. We had a TT and a pickup. 3 ˝ hours into a 4-hour trip we got off the freeway & the engine died. Somehow, I determined that the engine would run fine fast (45 MPH or faster) but would die if I let off the accelerator.

We made it to the campground, but it was now after 11 PM. It was full time 4WD so I put the transfer case into low and the auto trans into 1. With the engine racing and the foot hard on the brake I drove to the campsite and backed right into an ideal position on the first try. Great!

Except the truck was blocking the road and I would need to unhook and move it. I then discovered I had forgotten the ball lock key. No problem. I just pulled the hitch pin and the hitch pulled out of the receiver. Imagine trying to reconnect that. At least by then I had fixed the engine.

That was just one of multiple problems with the truck on that trip. I developed such a reputation that one time I was walking through the campground, and someone stopped & asked if I needed a ride to the auto parts store. Yep, I sure did.
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Old 09-22-2022, 10:19 AM   #78
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My wife always gets out to keep an eye out for problem areas. One has to be careful about fixating on the obvious at the cost of missing the subtle. For example, being so careful in backing up to maneuver past the pedestal on the driver's side, that you never realized there was a tree branch on the passenger's side that couldn't be appreciated unless you got out to notice it in the first place. Or being so focused on the large side mirror that you didn't notice a trouble spot that was, in retrospect, obvious in the smaller and distorted image in the convex mirror. I few months ago, my wife was pulling a 45' motorhome into a concrete pad. We heard that sickening crunch that you never want to hear. She had pulled the rear tires into a concrete drain that dipped down some 10-12 inches pulling the rear fiberglass cap off, causing multiple ripples and tears to the cap and adjacent side panels, and damaging the underlying metal bracing. Despite me piling some firewood underneath the tire to lift the RV enough to avoid any further damage, we had done $20,000 of damage. I thought she was just not experienced enough to pay attention to the right things and was preoccupied with some potential problems while not being aware of others.

I few months later, I would have done exactly the same thing had my wife not warned me in time. It was then I realized that we both paid so much attention to the side mirrors that we didn't see the issues in the blind spot along the side of the RV that WAS visible in the smaller convex mirror. As a result, I've made it part of my routine to temporarily adjust the sideview mirrors downward to afford me a much better view of what's happening along the sides of the RV when I'm pulling in, or pulling out, of those tight spots.
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Old 09-22-2022, 04:44 PM   #79
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I totally agree with this statement. I offer to help if someone is having a problem. I just don't think it's appropriate to gawk at someone else's parking misfortune as they are already stressed to the max anyway. This only adds to the frustration of the moment. I can only imagine what I would feel like.

The ones sitting there on the lawn chairs need a good education in common courtesy. No reason to sit and watch just for entertainment.

On our last trip, a couple was trying to back into a blind side space. The DW was behind the trailer trying to direct her husband but he could not see her.

I watched for a few minute and asked if it was OK for me to help direct the driver. I directed him into the spot by standing beside the truck and telling him what way the rear of the trailer had to go.
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Old 09-22-2022, 08:32 PM   #80
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We have had both towables and motor homes. My wife has always been my co-pilot but never has been my direction giver. Now unfortunately she is bound to a walker so couldn't if she wanted to. So I guess, it is a blessing we never started with her guiding. Yep, it sometimes takes me a bit longer to park but I have never had an accident while parking and we do mostly boondock camping so we have had some tight spots. I did not insist on this method, however, somehow it just never became an issue. We celebrate 60 years of marriage in a couple of months so apparently it was not a deal breaker. No I do not get enjoyment out of watching inexperienced folks doing something we take for granted, I have more important things to do like setting up my libation table and even asking them to join us. My method is this; After disconnecting the toad and driving to the site, I dismount, walk the site down observing any potential hazards and blind spots, back in as far as i feel comfortable, do another walk around to be sure of my progress, by then if it is all clear I complete backing in. I may do one more walk around to make sure of my back space and that the rear jacks are not impeded by anything. Sometimes it takes more than two or three walk arounds but so far, knock on wood, it works for us.
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Old 09-23-2022, 03:32 AM   #81
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I never sit or stand and stare, but I will watch from inside as a learning tool.
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Old 09-23-2022, 09:14 AM   #82
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I totally agree with this statement. I offer to help if someone is having a problem. I just don't think it's appropriate to gawk at someone else's parking misfortune as they are already stressed to the max anyway. This only adds to the frustration of the moment. I can only imagine what I would feel like.
I sometimes get embarrassed at myself when I do something silly but it doesn't bother me if I notice someone watching. Everyone makes mistakes! When it does happen, I usually come back with something like, "I meant to do that" or "well, that didn't work", if they're close enough to hear me.

But at the same time, I would be very irritated if a person watched me backed into a tree without trying to help. Fortunately, that's never happened to me and I'm betting, happens very rarely overall. I have no doubt most posters in this thread would step up if the person they were watching started getting themselves into costly trouble.
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Old 09-23-2022, 09:35 AM   #83
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I read this entire thread. I think I can distill it down a bit:

Nobody (else) is perfect!

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Old 09-23-2022, 10:07 AM   #84
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Ok, I’ve been following and reading the thread for some time now. I see 2 camps here. Sit and watch and be entertained. Or go help. Here is why I normally sit back and watch. Went to help an obviously new camper back in. Female spotter & driver got angry with me just by my asking (politely) and they stayed angry. Another time I offered a grumpy old man in a 40’ class A with no spotter. He yelled NO! when I offered. So now I mainly sit back and watch. (Read 3rd paragraph before condemming me.)

Other fact. There will be several good people there suddenly trying to assist the backer, all give different conflicting commands and insisting they are right. Then the accident occurs and they suddenly dissapear, leaving the one hapless person behind to take the blame.

Will I help someone? Yes I will, but if there is several others there then I back off. If I offer assistance to them and they appear the least bit aggravated and refuse, I walk away. If it is me backing in and someone offers, I thank them for their offer and either accept or decline. But I stiil follow GOAT-AL #1.

One thing that gets really irritating to me is when I am trying to back in a spot, and I am very good at putting my own vehicle, is a person suddenly running up behind my coach without me knowing and waving their hands in all kinds of gestures and hidding behind me. Not only that, but if you know anything about assisting it is that the spotter should always see you, the driver, in the mirrors. The saying “IF YOU CAN’T SEE ME I CAN’T SEE YOU” is true. Really sickning hearing that thump as you run into the unseen, unknown, dumb spotter standing directly behind you.

Go ahead and rant back, but if someone doesn’t want help then don’t. You are only going to make them angry and distract them and could be held responsible if they screw up. Let them be. Ask if they want help, and then only one spotter who is knowledgeable in assisting. Above all, GOAT-AL 1st. Get out and take a look first. I’m not mean, just quoting common sense.
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