Interview With Karen Eidson of Fabgrandma
In your opinion, what would be the best and most affordable campground in the Southwest with full access to hook-ups for a family to visit on a tight budget?
It is very hard for me to give suggestions for families, because I only travel with my husband. And it depends on where in the Southwest you want to go. But, if you are planning a trip to visit the Grand Canyon, I would suggest staying at a campground in Kanab, Utah. By staying in Kanab, you can visit the North Rim of the Grand Canyon National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park , and Zion National Park. Kanab is in the center of the "triangle". There are plenty of things to do within a short drive.
If you want to go to Flagstaff, we always stay at the KOA. It has lots of spaces, accomodates most any size RV, has a playground and free wi-fi. It's not cheap, but is a lot cheaper than staying in a motel.
And if you are lucky enough to get a reservation at one of the campgrounds in one of the National Parks in the southwest, they are a good deal. The North Rim Campground sites are all $18 a night but provide no hookups. There is water available, and a dump station.
Since being diagnosed with Celiac disease in 2007, has that affected your traveling journeys since you and your husband sold all of your belongings in 2000 to beocome full-time Rvers?
I have not been diagnosed because I do not have health insurance, so I can not afford the testing required for a diagnosis. I stopped eating gluten after my cousin was diagnosed, though, and since all my symptoms disappeared, I can only assumed I have it, too. And yes, it has affected my travels just a bit, because we have to be more particular about where we stop for meals while traveling. I plan most of our trips around restaurant stops where I know I will be able to get a gluten free meal.
Since you've started your traveling journeys what part of the country has the most appetizing food? What part of the country has the least appetizing food?
This one is also a hard question to answer. We LOVED Pennsylvania, because there were so many choices available as far as fresh fruits and vegetables. In Virginia, we worked at a campground where I could keep a crab trap in the water, so I had steamed crabs several times a week. In South Texas, we found so many good places to eat Tex Mex and true Mexican foods. My favorite restaurant of all, though, is Picazzo's Pizza in Flagstaff, Arizona. It is a gourmet pizza place where you can get anything on the menu gluten free.
What websites or other blogs would you recommend to RVers visit before they travel on there next RV vacation?
These websites can be helpful in planning a trip:
http://www.woodalls.com/ will help you find a campsite in any area of the country. You can create an account and join for free.
http://www.rvparkreviews.com/ This site has some reviews of campsites in a limited number of states. Users can leave a review and rate the campgrounds they have visited
http://www.campgroundreport.com/ Another campground review site.
http://www.nps.gov/index.htm National Park Service website with information on all the national parks in the country
And I love these blogs:
http://geogypsy.blogspot.com/ Geogypsy--she is an interpretive park ranger at the Grand Canyon
http://2takinga5th.blogspot.com/ Fulltime RV'ers who also ride motorcycles. They lead an interesting life!
http://travels-with-emma.blogspot.com/ Judy volunteers at wildlife refuges and has some of the best wildlife photography! I love her blog.
If you could go back in time and re-live one RV vacation with your husband, which RV vacation would you choose?
It would be the one we took in a pop-up from our home in Georgia to the Rio Grande Vally of Texas. We left town with a two week reservation at Bentsen Rio Grande Valley State Park and wound up staying 4 weeks. That particular Texas state park no longer has a campground. When we camped there we saw so many species of birds it was hard to keep count. We saw our first javalena, and went to Mexico for the first time. On the the way home, we stopped in Louisiana, where we went to local seafood markets and bought all the ingredients to make gumbo. It was so much fun, we didn't want to go home, and that was when we started to think seriously about living fulltime in an RV.
Do you recommend RVing as a family event? Would you say it's brought your family closer together?
Yes, i do recommend RVing (and camping in any form) as family events. There is no better way to see the country, sleep in the woods, get close to wildlife, and just "be" family. My husband and I didn't start RVing until our children were grown and had already moved out of the house. I can say, though, that we have had our children visit us at every place we have worked and lived in our RV journey. Our children get a new place to go on vacation every time we move down the road.
What's the most exciting RV experience you've ever had?
Hmmmm? Exciting? The first time we drove up the Kaibab Plateau to our summer job at the North Rim was pretty exciting. We had no idea what it would look like as we had never been there before. There were several feet of snow on the ground when we arrived. A few days after we got there, we went to town, Kanab, Utah, which was 85 miles away, to buy groceries. On our way back home, we were almost to our trailer, when a huge bull bison stepped out into the road. It was our first time seeing one! We stopped the truck and let him decide what he was going to do. He was so close we could see steam coming out of his flared nostrils. Just as suddenly as he had appeared, he turned and ran off into the woods! Now THAT was exciting!
Thanks Karen for the interview ! Visit her blog @ Fabgrandma