FourSeasonCamping

Did Someone Just Say “Snow Day”?

Winter wanderlust can tickle the heart of any adventurer, especially when traveling with a Road Chief. Those of us who grew up with a love of all things snow know how an amazing weekend outdoors doing what you really love goes a long way to erasing those early mornings of shoveling or scraping the white stuff and makes for a real gratitude of what a change of seasons brings.

The exhilaration of spending time in nature when the weather is cold prompts many of us to consider extending our camping into November and beyond. When nature beckons you to your favorite slopes and trails in winter, should you bring your Bowlus Road Chief? Yes! With planning and preparation, camping in your Road Chief can be part of every season of the year.

How is this possible? We take winter seriously and developed winter camping solutions with other designers like those in Sweden where they know winter, too. The silent Swedish compact heater has been allowing families across Europe to enjoy all-season camping for years. The heating system is installed in every Road Chief, allowing us to extend your camping season even after the leaves begin to fall. By setting the electronic thermostat to the right temperature, you can use the heater to keep your Road Chief cozy and warm. The hydronic heating system can be run on propane or electricity (15A or 30A power), so no matter your plans you’ll be toasty. Don’t forget features like the Road Chief’s floor heating can warm even the frostiest of popsicle toes. With everything tucked inside a Road Chief shell, you’ll be ready for any winter adventure.

We’re truly blessed that both of our locations are just hours away from incredible winter wonderlands. The thoughts of blowing flakes, the sight of our frosty breaths and the creak of compacting snow as we break a fresh trail followed by a night settled in with great food and those we love makes us say“Let’s call for snow day!”

Where will you head on your next winter journey? 

See you out there,
Geneva Long
Bowlus Road Chief

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5 of Our Favorite Outdoor Activities with Road Chief

There’s nothing a Road Chief loves more than being your guide to all the action. Lightweight, agile and aerodynamic, think of the Road Chief as a world-class athlete who cruises out of the blocks, leading the way in best off grid performance and supporting you in any adventure you can imagine. No matter what your next excursion is, our RV’s unique features and capabilities make it the ideal companion. Below are five of our favorite outdoor activities to explore with the Road Chief. What are yours?   

Golf

RV travel meet golf pro. Yes, it’s a for-real niche. You know who you are. If RV life and fairways sound like a perfect combination to you, check out rvgolfclub.com. Members gain exclusive access to properties throughout North America, and the number of destinations is growing yearly. The club is a wonderful alternative to RV parks. Quiet nights are followed by a sunrise view of the green, all for a low annual fee. The club has also introduced a handful of RV resorts to their collection for those seeking hook-ups. 

Since the Road Chief is the world’s best off gridding RV, spending a night on a golf course is better than par for the course. Want 10% off the price of membership? Just tell them that Bowlus Road Chief sent you. 

Mountain Biking 

Any avid mountain biker knows what a beautiful country we live in. If you’re the kind of person that loves off-grid races, the Road Chief is a perfect companion. Whether you’re shredding the Sawtooth Mountains or competing in Leadville, the Road Chief’s lithium battery-powered system allows you to stay as close as possible to the trails. With our new 26’ travel trailer you can even enjoy a continuous hot water shower post-ride! And the internal lashing system means your bikes can be safely stored inside your Road Chief with total security while you move to your next challenge. 

Fishing

Where there’s good fishing, you’ll often find beautiful camping. And wherever there’s camping, there’s always room for a Road Chief. So, snag your tackle box, crack open a cold one and catch a King salmon straight from Lake Ontario. Grill it up for dinner only minutes after catching it in the Road Chief’s full kitchen. Now that’s our idea of “fresh-caught.” Or if you’re a catch and release fan, no worries—your Road Chief’s pre-stocked pantry will ensure you don’t go hungry.

Surfing 

Camping on the beach? Yes please. Especially for those interested in exploring the Californian coast, there are ample opportunities for beachside (and even ocean-side) camping. From San Diego’s Silver Strand to Humboldt’s Gold Bluff, there is no shortage of beach bum adventures. The Road Chief’s unique heating system takes the chill off of cold nights while solar panels recharge the system during the day, thanks to that eternal Californian sunshine.

Climbing 

The Road Chief’s off grid capabilities make it a particularly good fit for climbers. Given that some of the country’s most coveted climbing destinations aren’t close to hook-ups, a Road Chief can be the difference between spending an afternoon climbing a couple of routes at the City of Rocks and spending a week scaling every wall in the National Reserve Idaho.

With its revolutionary battery, charging stations for devices, heated floors, spacious floorplan and incredible off-grid capabilities, the Road Chief holds the promise of endless adventure. You seek spontaneity? New limits? Discovery on a wide-open road? It’s all within reach when you have a Bowlus Road Chief.

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Nopales (Prickly Pear Cacti) Recipe Two Ways

We are a truly blessed with an incredible team of talent that builds your Road Chief. After seeing the nopales featured in the photoshoot for the new On The Road 26’ Edition, our lead of installation, Erick, shared his family recipes for the little cacti. In his four years at Bowlus Road Chief, Erick has advanced to lead an amazing team that is dedicated to giving you their very best. “Everyone gets along and has a good attitude. I love the team we have here and that we’re building the best travel trailer in the world,” says Erick.

Erick, you are so appreciated—thank you for sharing your recipes!

Prepare the Nopales

Tools
6 QT pot
Large bowl
Sharp knife
Cutting board
Medium bowl

Place the nopales on the cutting board and using a sharp knife, scrape the thorns/spines off of the nopales by running your knife along the skin until the skin is completely smooth. Do this to both sides. Rinse the nopales under water.

Cut the Nopales
First, cut the nopales in half long-way, then cut it in slices until you have sections no longer than 3” in length and 1” in width.

Cook the Nopales
Prepare a pot of boiling water (8 cups) with a tablespoon of salt over the stove in your Road Chief. Once the water is at a boil, add the nopales and cook for about 20 minutes or until tender. Keep a close eye on the nopales, they will let off a lot of water while cooking and the pot can overflow. Drain the nopales and rinse in cold water to take off any cactus slime.

Recipe 1: Pico De Gallo with Nopales

Ingredients
6 nopales
2 tomatoes
¼ onion
½ lime
½ bundle of cilantro
Salt to taste

Directions
After cooking the nopales, chop the tomatoes, onions, cilantro and mix all of your ingredients together in a large bowl. Add the lime and more salt if necessary. Serve on tacos or tamales, or use as dip for your favorite tortilla chips

Recipe 2: Skirt Steak and Salsa

Ingredients
2 lbs. skirt steak
15 Guajillo chilis
8 tomatillos
1 garlic clove
½ tablespoon of salt

Tools
Large pan (cast iron)
Spatula
Medium bowl

Directions
Toast the Guajillo chilis in a pan for about 10-15 minutes over medium heat. After the Guajillo chilis are toasted, remove them from the pan and remove all seeds inside. Soak the Guajillo chilis in room temperature water for three minutes. Toast the tomatillos over medium heat until they are soft. Place the Guajillo chilis in a blender with the garlic, salt and three cups of water. If the salsa is too thick, add more water and keep blending.

Remove the salsa from the blender and place in a medium bowl. Rinse the blender. Then place the tomatillos in the blender with ¾ cup of water and blend. Mix the tomatillo with the Guajillo chili mix that is already in the medium bowl. Your salsa is now complete.

Cook the skirt steak to your preference and after the meat is cooked, add the salsa and nopales to the pan and let it simmer together for 5-10 minutes.

Salud!

 

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When Less is More

You’ll often hear, or read on a forum, that someone knows someone who says they wouldn’t drive anything without a double axle. They go on and on about better tracking or better safety, etc. Usually, these comments are made by individuals with little or no understanding of engineering or design. Let’s break this myth. The Bowlus Road Chief is safer and better designed with a single axle. And, you guessed it – weight determines needs.

Every tire has a load capacity, and this dictates the requirement for the number of tires; a car, because it’s heavy, needs four tires, and a motorcycle, only two. Recreational trailer tires hold a load capacity specific to each tire. In the case of a Bowlus Road Chief, with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 3,000 pounds (for the On The Road 24’ Edition) and 4,000 pounds (for the On the Road 26’ Edition), we use Goodyear Endurance 205R15 at 65psi with a load; this equates to 2150 lbs. per tire. This dictates just one axle and two tires. The 25’ Airstream, on the other hand, has a GVWR of 7600 lbs. For such a heavy travel trailer, two axles and four tires are required. Let’s ignore for a moment the arguments that two axles greatly compromise interior layouts and reduce interior space or that they cost twice as much to replace or maintain. Instead, let’s look at how aerodynamics, specifically weight balancing, and the design of an RV impact tracking and safety. Our owners tell us that when they’ve experienced challenging driving conditions (particularly down mountain passes) with other, heavier travel trailers they’ve owned or rented, a double axle did not deliver better tracking or provide a feeling of more safety. One Road Chief owner shared with us that, due to the poor handling of a heavy travel trailer he was once driving, he was pulled over for a suspected DUI. Additionally, tandem axles have twice the running gear weight which results in slower acceleration, more braking, and the need for a heavier tow vehicle. All of these measures still don’t cancel out poor handling. With the Bowlus Road Chief, and its incredible weight distribution and lower center of gravity, sway is never an issue. The Road Chief’s low weight also makes it easier to rotate on two wheels (with the jockey wheel), so it can be positioned anywhere.

Lastly, let’s touch on tire maintenance. You should regularly inspect your tires for damage and keep your tires properly inflated. This can be easily completed during your circle check before you leave your campsite. RV tires, depending how they are stored, can deteriorate due to poor maintenance and exposure to UV light. (We partially address this with our fender skirts that you can personalize with the name of your Road Chief). The #1 cause of RV tire blowouts are old tires and overloading. The idea that you can simply “limp” home on 3 tires doesn’t compute since the heavier RV still requires four tires, and severe damage will result from traveling with even one damaged tire. So, remember to replace your tires every seven years, even if they look perfect; it’s a small price for safety. Finally, consider upping your AAA membership to include your RV. It’s good to know you’re not alone. Let us know if you have any other questions you’d like us to address.

With appreciation,
Geneva Long
Bowlus Road Chief

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The Taste of Home On The Road

Food, friends, fun and gratitude – everything we love about a Thanksgiving feast. But it got us thinking – we’ve done Thanksgiving dinner inside a Road Chief but could we do it all our favorites around a campfire?  The answer is yes! We just needed a little creativity to include everyone’s favorites.

Dinner

  • Turkey (under 7 pounds to fit in Dutch Oven)
  • Chicken Stock (3+ cups)
  • Chopped Garlic (5 cloves)
  • Chopped Yellow Onion (1 onion)
  • Herb Blend of your Choice (we like sage, rosemary & thyme)
  • Butter or Ghee
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Brussel Sprouts

Desert

  • 1 Cup of Almond Milk
  • 1 Cup of Sugar (Granulated)
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Can of Pumpkin Puree
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 box of gluten free cake mix
  • ¾ cup of pecans (chopped)
  • Approximately ½ cup of melted butter

Tools

  • Dutch Oven (Cast Iron)
  • Dutch Oven Liner
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Aluminum Pie Tin
  • Knife
  • Cutting Board
  • Fire Pit with strong grate
  • Meat Thermometer
  • Cast Iron Pan

Step one: The Fire

Start your fire with decent sized logs. You need to build enough heat within the fire pit using the coals from the logs. You’ll want to build your main fire in a separate part of the fire pit (not directly under where you will place your Dutch oven)

Step Two: The Turkey

Take your aluminum pie tin and poke a few holes in it. Place it upside down at the bottom of your Dutch oven. Stuff the turkey with the garlic, half of the onion and three quarters of a stick of butter. Place the stuffed turkey in the Dutch oven resting on the pie tin. Add your chicken stock (3 cups approx.) over it and then add your herbs on top. Place the Dutch oven on the grate, but not directly over the fire. Be sure to cover. As you want consistent heat, as the flames die down, make sure that you push coals under the Dutch oven. This gives it a more oven effect than stove effect. Rotate the Dutch oven every 15 minutes to make sure the turkey cooks evenly. Time to cook will depend on your fire (somewhere between 2-4 hours). With your thermometer check that the internal temperature reaches around 180 degrees.  Let turkey sit 25 minutes before carving.

Step Three: The Sweet Potatoes

Our favorite way to do potatoes and veggies over the fire is to use an aluminum foil packet. It’s super easy. Cut up all sweet potatoes into small cubes (add other veggies if you like too). Mix with spices and add a bit of water. Fold veggies in aluminum foil package flat and place packets on the cooking rack too. Wait about 20 mins or until soft.

Step Four: The Brussel Sprouts – my dad’s favorite!

Place the cast iron skillet over the fire to heat up. You could also make these over the cooktop in your Road Chief. Chop up the Brussel sprouts into halves and add the other half of the onion to the mix in a separate bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and other herbs of your choice. Mix all together and add mixture to your cast iron pan spreading evenly. Stir every few minutes and let caramelize until done (about 10-15 minutes).

Step Five: The Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie Cobbler

Note: It might be a good idea to use a Dutch oven liner for this.

Heat up in medium bowl stir together almond milk, sugar, pumpkin, vanilla extract and cinnamon. Pour into your Dutch oven. Dust the cake mix evenly over your pumpkin mixture. Sprinkle with pecans and place very small cubes of butter as evenly as possible on top.

Bake over fire covered until top is golden brown. Remove from fire and let sit for 15-20 minutes before serving.

Bon Appétit!

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Are you ready for Thankscamping?

Spending Thanksgiving on a Road Chief® adventure provides ample opportunities to honor the spirit of appreciation that’s the heart of the holiday. Although we always enjoy epic meals, insane game nights, and amazing hikes, the simplicity of being away from extraneous frills and trimmings allows us clarity and time to reflect on the essence of gratitude.

How can we ensure our loved ones feel honored on this special day? Recall how a meaningful compliment opens a soul to deeper connections. Kind words put minds at ease and allow us to hope. Take time to listen. Share. Connect. We all have a deep need to be attached to friends and family, and we all want to be heard, so don’t rush these moments.

Vow to be thoughtful all weekend. Revel in the goodness that being thankful brings. Maybe it’s as simple as renewing or deepening a connection with a friend. Perhaps you’ll relax with a perfect latte in bed or celebrate some good news that opened your thinking to what’s possible. Don’t rush the goodness. Enjoy. Then ask, “Is there something we can do to share it?” Maybe that action will be as simple as picking up some litter from around the travel trailer or taking time to savor a slice of pumpkin pie with a loved one or helping out those in need. When we breath in and appreciate all we have, the reward of gratitude can make us feel even happier. How awesome is that? We hope you’ll join us this weekend in practicing gratitude. Imagine what we can create.

In kindness,
Geneva Long
Bowlus Road Chief

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Juicing Up

You love to travel, and you want to set out on the open road, but can the Bowlus Road Chief® handle the challenge? You bet! The Road Chief® can go along to any destination, fully charged and ready for all of your adventures.

The Road Chief® provides the most flexible charging options of any RV on the market today. With the ease and value of available charging options, Road Chief® owners save themselves hours of frustration, allowing them to focus on what really matters – spending time with loved ones and seeing this amazing country of ours.

Charging your Road Chief® from your tow vehicle while you are en route to your destination is the easiest charging strategy. By using the power of your vehicle on an all-day trip, you charge while you drive.

Additionally, your solar panel can charge your Road Chief®. Field testing shows that the solar panels can generate 30 – 50 AMPs, allowing you ample energy, for instance, to use the lights refrigerator/freezer and the cellular amplifier with the On The Road 24’ Edition. The Honda 2000 generator can also be added to your Road Chief® to provide energy. This compact powerhouse can run all the Road Chief’s® energy demands, including the air conditioner, so you can stay cool and comfortable wherever you are.

If you plan on visiting friends or family and need to recharge, a 15 AMP circuit is all you need to power up. This means that you simply plug into a 120V outlet. You’ll prove yourself to be the best type of guest: you bring your own housing and you only need to use a standard 120V outlet to recharge – voilà!

With the Road Chief®, you’re free to steer clear of packed RV parks and even head into the backcountry, assured that you have a host of charging options at your fingertips. What could be better?

Kind regards,
Geneva Long
Bowlus Road Chief®

P. S. With charging ports, air-conditioning, and other electronic amenities, the biggest challenge may be to disconnect and enjoy nature! Come visit us or set up a FaceTime appointment to experience a Road Chief®!

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Living Off Grid Is Freeing

Living off grid is freeing – truly living off grid comfortably is exhilarating. Yet how can we achieve this nexus of getting off the beaten path while continuing to enjoy easy living? Get lots of battery capacity with a generous inverter – the bigger, the better; a large inverter truly is a beautiful solution to all your power needs.

To enjoy out-of-the-way locations and distant locales, an inverter is needed to run general appliances, like a computer. The flow of electrons in currents creates electrical power, and these currents are of two types: alternating currents (AC) and direct currents (DC). With AC, the current changes direction; with DC, the current flows in one direction, usually coming from a battery or solar panel. AC usually flows at 120 Volts (V); DC streams at about 12V. Most home wiring systems run 120V AC. This is the source of energy that RV aficionados call shore power. Generally, items that run off shore power, or AC, are larger items that require more power, like a microwave or air-conditioner. Many electronics are made to run off 12V DC, and for most RVs, DC can also power low-voltage items like smoke detectors. In the case of the Bowlus Road Chief®, however, our 12V DC system also charges the refrigerator/freezer.

Given the blur between work and play in modern life, you need a power solution that allows you to crack open the Photoshop app as soon as you’ve taken that awesome shot. But how will you power your device? When you’re plugged into shore power, a converter kicks in, takes the flow of 120V AC, and reduces it to 12V DC for items such as lights. When you’re away from home and without shore power, an inverter will provide the electrical current you need. An inverter does the opposite of a converter. When you’re running off your batteries or solar panel, the inverter will take the 12V DC current and convert it to a 120V AC current to power the appliances that require it, like your laptop or microwave.

An intelligent power management system means you have more power and greater flexibility to use it reliably, so the Bowlus Road Chief® On The Road® (24’ and 26’) and the Endless Highways Edition have a 2,000-watt pure sine wave inverter. Pure-sine wave inverters produce an 120V AC power signal off grid that looks very much like what you may experience at home – smooth power that makes for reliable running of electrical outlets in the bedroom, bathroom, and living room. It’s important to combine a 2,000 watt pure since wave inverter with a large capacity battery system. The all-lithium iron phosphate battery systems in the Bowlus Road Chief® On the Road 24’ Edition (with 2kWh) and the Bowlus Road Chief® On The Road® 26’ Edition and Endless Highways Edition (with 4 kWh) mean you don’t have to worry about figuring out your electric load every time you want to run more than a few things at once.

With a 2,000 watt inverter and lots of battery capacity, you can even break out more demanding electrical hogs, like a blender so you can bliss out with your favorite smoothie after a hike.

Kind Regards,
Geneva Long
Bowlus Road Chief®

P.S. Do you have additional questions about why Bowlus Road Chief® is the ultimate travel trailer? Contact us – we’d love to chat!

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How Do You Keep Your Signature?

All truly spectacular transportation designs can be broken down into their constituent parts: a line, a detail, a curve. The very best forms can be pared back to practically nothing, with a simple silhouette speaking volumes, like a signature of who you are. At Bowlus Road Chief®, our design is so pure we’ve even trademarked it.

A strong signature is essential so that altering it can feel like sacrilege if not done correctly. Thankfully, we’re so focused that changes in design, materials, technology or craftsmanship have never impacted the fundamental elements that make a Bowlus Road Chief® what it is. However, new demands motivate us to create new design solutions. We see more inter-generational families sharing a Road Chief®; we realize more travelers are working while on the road; more owners are also living away from their home base for longer periods. These needs cause us to consider how to best serve our ever-developing market. So our visual identity must evolve; however, it must also stay true. Thus, we protect your investment while widening our offering.

So with great deliberation, we have added two feet the Bowlus Road Chief® to create a new edition to be known as the On The Road® 26’ Edition. It delivers on our core values of meaningful adventures, incredible agility, the very best in quality and craftsmanship, outstanding off-grid performance, and amazing range, with Road Chief® additions that speak to your specific needs. Rest assured, we didn’t dampen the aerodynamics or the handling. We designed this edition for those seeking more comfort for four, or more room for two, on their extended adventures.

As we’ve grown to a full portfolio of Road Chief® editions, the constants of quality, craftsmanship, technology and design that have guided us since inception are always in our mind as we focus on you.

Although the On The Road® 26’ Edition will be released on October 29th, you may wish to order one today because, like everything we do, there is a finite number of these beautiful editions available. Delivery begins in late November 2018.

We always have you in mind,
Geneva Long
Bowlus Road Chief®

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Is It Time To Consider A Digital Detox?

One thing we love about running a business in California is that we can experience life at the cutting edge of micro trends. Yes, some may initially seem a little insane, like how you can be literally swimming in colorful sprinkles in a warehouse in LA at a pop-up called the Museum of Ice Cream one week, to then reading a few months later how these trendsetters have pivoted their concept to eight flavors of ice cream that you can pick up at Target?! California culture loves what’s next. We believe trends that challenge the status quo, more often than not, change our lives for the better.

When we first brought out the Road Chief® five years ago, there were no permanent TV screens (there still aren’t). The “Big RV” industry said trailers without TV screens would never sell. But we believed differently. We wanted your adventures to begin with you. We knew streaming was where it would be and we wanted you to have the choice to skip it or enjoy it with a late-night streaming party in your Road Chief®. What mattered was watching TV on your terms.

Soon you’ll see every RV littered with “smart” technology. It’s the stuff we’ve been doing since our inception. While we agree there are many wonderful things about modern technology, there are also a lot of things wrong with it too. Like how screens can interfere with the production of melatonin or how social media can make us less happy, not to mention – in this insanely large country of ours, there are still a lot of black holes with poor connectivity. Do you really want your awning not to work just because you’ve decided to visit Green Bank, West Virginia – a town smack in the middle of the National Radio Quiet Zone? Without enough power to run all those bells and whistles they are just lipstick on a pig, which is why our power systems are significant.

So, we are going to be so bold as to say that this “smart” technology is so yesterday. Instead, we’re honored to be your leader in thoughtful technology when you travel. It’s not about tech for tech’s sake. It is technology that makes your life better. It supports you, how you want to be. Like charging stations that charge and hide away your devices so that you can be more focused on an epic game of backgammon. Like heated floors on those chilly evenings. Like how more phone signal inside your Road Chief® means you can make that confidential call from your getaway location. Or how your tech charges while you drive, so it’s ready when you want it. But more often than not, when you’re away from everyday life, you want all of this tech to drift into the background, which is why we support the idea of a digital detox, allowing you to focus on the moments during your adventures.

We have noticed our adventures feel more satisfying when we enjoy more physical activities and cut back on technology. Now, we aren’t suggesting you abstain entirely. Just choose a spot on the disconnection spectrum that works for you when you’re away. Maybe it’s turning off those annoying Pavlovian pings. Maybe it’s scheduling check-ins instead of finding yourself huddling over your device waiting for an email. Focusing on the intention of your trip, and not the annoying interferences, will ensure that you return home ready to take on what life hurls your way.

Here’s to a beautiful weekend,
Geneva Long
Bowlus Road Chief®

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