Camping trips should be all carefree fun and adventure. No one wants to worry about thieves and RV security during a campground vacation. Although it’s not fun to think about, it’s important to consider your RV’s security.
This includes RV door security, making sure that no one can get into your camper when you’re not around. It also includes exterior safety features, like surveillance systems and RV security cameras. At Juniata Valley RV, we want to make sure your camping trip is fun and safe. We put together this list of RV security tips, from the basics to the high-tech methods.
Lock your doors
Sure, this one seems obvious. But sometimes there’s so much going on at the campsite it’s easy to forget. The best way to be sure you lock your RV doors is to make a habit of it. Lock your RV door as well as any exterior storage compartments when you leave the campsite. Even if the RV park you’re at seems safe and low-key, there’s no reason to risk it. Make a habit of locking your RV’s doors every time you leave, even if you only plan to be gone for a minute.
Close your blinds
Closing your blinds is another easy step you can take to improve your RV security. When you leave the campsite, be sure your RV’s windows, blinds and curtains are closed. Aside from security concerns, closing your blinds will block sunlight from shining into your RV and fading your furniture.
In addition to closing your blinds, it’s a good idea to hide expensive items. Anything valuable, like jewelry, tablets or cameras, should be tucked away before you leave. You can always invest in a safe, preferably one that can be bolted down, if you’re still worried about the safety of your irreplaceable items.
Leave the lights on
Another easy security precaution you can take in your RV or at home is leaving lights on – interior and exterior. Keeping your interior lights on while you’re gone, especially at night, makes it more difficult for potential thieves to determine whether or not you’re home. In addition, bright exterior lights can help deter thieves. Particularly motion-sensor RV security lights that will shine directly on anyone trying to break in.
When you arrive at your campsite, whether you’re staying a few days or for the whole season, take the time to introduce yourself to your neighbors. Talk to those camping nearby and introduce them to your crew. This way you’ll have another set of eyes on your RV when you’re gone, and they’re more likely to notice if someone unfamiliar is at your campsite, trying your RV door, or messing with your camping supplies.
Put things away
Although it might seem tedious, putting your things away before leaving or going to sleep is an easy way to protect yourself from campground thieves. Clear your campsite of chairs, cooking equipment, firewood and anything else someone could steal. If you have items that won’t be easy to put away, like bikes, invest in a bike lock, for example, as an added layer of protection.
New RVs will come with standard factory locks and keys. These base-level RV locks are not very secure, only adding a minimum level of protection. We recommend investing in a new, sturdier or high-tech RV lock. You can easily install a keypad lock, requiring a code to enter your RV rather than a traditional key-entry lock that can be easily picked. Keyless entry for your RV is often safer, and you won’t have to worry about losing a key and being locked out.
RV security system
It’s a good idea to invest in an RV security system as well. This is more common with full-time RVers, but it’s a good idea for anyone wanting to ensure their camper is safe. Basic RV security systems are easy to install, using sensors that simply attach to doors and windows. These sensors will alert you when someone opens your door or window. You can also invest in RV security cameras. Security cameras are cheaper than ever, you can find them for as little as $20 on Amazon! They can live-stream to your phone or save video to a memory card. You can find RV security cameras that record constantly or activate with motion. Whatever you choose, an RV security system and camera is cheaper than ever before and an easy way to secure your camper.
Get a hitch guard
It’s not very common, but RV theft isn’t unheard of. The downside of having a towable home is knowing that anyone can hitch their truck up and tow it away. While no one wants to think about this nightmare situation, there are steps you can take to prevent it. We recommend purchasing a hitch guard. You can lock a hitch guard onto your trailer hitch, making it impossible for anyone to tow your RV away without unlocking and removing the guard.
No one wants to think about the potential for theft when trying to enjoy a campground vacation, but it’s always possible. Give yourself peace of mind with our RV security tips. Whether you implement new habits of locking your RV or purchase a new RV security camera, there are plenty of ways to deter thieves.
If you’re looking for a new RV, Juniata Valley RV is here for you! We have new and used travel trailers, tiny campers and motorhomes in stock at our Pennsylvania RV dealership. Stop by to purchase a new RV or shop our inventory online. If your RV needs security installations or service, our service department might be able to help you. We even have a parts store with RV locks and other security features. Call us or contact us online to find out how we can help you protect your RV from theft.
If you’re looking for a way to add meal options to your camping menu, there’s nothing more versatile than cooking with a campfire Dutch oven. For camping, it is best to have a Dutch oven with both the pot and lid made of cast iron. Cast iron is best for cooking because it can handle very high temperatures without damage and conducts heat evenly throughout the cooking surface. A Dutch oven can be used as a pot over the fire or an oven when covered in hot coals, making cooking with it very popular. Dutch ovens can also be used in an oven at home or on top of a gas heater if other fuel is hard to come by, which makes these cooking devices possible all year round, in any environment.
Campfire Dutch Oven Cooking Materials
If you haven’t used your Dutch oven at the campground, here are a few tools to help give the best experience when trying campfire Dutch oven recipes:
- Campfire Tripod – A tripod or over-hanger can be used for cooking or keeping your dish warm above the heat.
- Campfire Grate – A campfire grate can double as both an object to position your Dutch oven above the heat or become a cooking surface itself for other pots and pans.
- Long Metal Tongs – Long-handled tongs are a little awkward to use but are needed to move food and position coals around hot campfires.
- Gloves – Heat resistant gloves add another layer of protection when handling hot food and materials over the campfire.
- Dutch Oven Lid Lifter – Lids can be both hot and heavy, so having a lid lifter is necessary. Some lid lifters can also be used to adjust food while cooking.
- Chimney Charcoal Starter – Charcoal starters are designed to preheat briquettes quickly, which can trim down your preparation time.
- Cooking Thermometer – A little bit of a luxury, but necessary if you want your meals cooked to perfection every time.
- Liners & Oils – Having liners or cooking oils to separate the food from the inside surface of the pot will make it easier to remove food for serving and to clean the oven afterward.
- Pot Holders – If you don’t have a tripod or a grate, a simple pot holder can help you safely raise your warm Dutch oven off the ground without overcooking your dish in the hot coals.
Total Cook Time: 45 mins
Bake soft, flaky, fluffy bread with this campfire Dutch oven recipe. Requiring only a few ingredients and just 30 minutes of bake time, you’ll have your lovely loaf ready to slice and serve with your favorite spread.
Total Cook Time: 4 hr. 10 mins
Servings: 10 people
This campfire Dutch oven recipe brings home-cooked comfort from the warmth of your campfire to your campsite. Nothing is better than the taste of tender beef laying in a bed of fresh vegetables and savory spices, all steamed and baked slowly over charcoals. This Dutch oven recipe delivers maximum taste with minimum amount of ingredients.
Total Cook Time: 1 hr. 10 mins
Servings: 6 – 8
This simple oven recipe only requires eight ingredients. In 12 easy steps, you can bake up a soft and sweet peach pastry with warm, flaky crust that is sure to top any meal or evening under the stars. Bring a taste of grandma’s cooking to your campfire with this winner for dinner!
Total Cook Time: 45 mins
No meat? No problem! This vegetarian lasagna is sure to be a favorite for all pasta lovers. You can break up the boring routine of canned beans and dry trail mix with this fresh and steamy gourmet camp oven recipe.
Total Cook Time: 20 mins
Hungry? Why wait? Grab your Dutch oven for this quick and hearty recipe! Crispy chips and smooth refried beans, topped with fresh chopped veggies and stringy melted cheese; this is a recipe that can please any hungry camper. Vegetarian campers can enjoy this meal as well since no meat is included.
Total Cook Time: 2 hrs 30 mins
The Dublin Coddle is an easy camp oven recipe to make. Taste robust potatoes, glazed onions, crunchy bacon, and succulent sausage all boiled in zesty chicken broth and beer. Enjoy an Irish classic from the comfort of your campsite. As a bonus, this recipe works in your oven at home too!
Total Cook Time: 28 mins
Perfect for coastal camping, these light buttery clams are steamed in a white wine sauce. Add in a little garlic and pepper flakes for both a kick of heat and spice, and you have a meal that is both flavorful and fragrant. Don’t discard the broth, as it doubles as both a sauce for the clams and as a dip for the bread. Get acquainted with your environment and a taste of the ocean with this campfire Dutch oven recipe!
Total Cook Time: 1 hr 15 mins
Enjoy succulent porkchops covered in breadcrumbs, cooked along with hearty cubed potatoes bathed in creamy mushroom soup to blend it all together. Only requiring eight ingredients and an hour of cook time, this meal will quickly crush your hunger and keep your tank full while on the go!
When it comes to campfire cooking, there is nothing wrong with going Dutch! Now that you have some exciting new Dutch oven recipes to cook on your next camping trip, are you ready for your journey? Let us here at Juniata Valley help you with the details from parts and accessories, to new and used RVs, motorhomes, travel trailers and more! Give us a call, fill out a contact form, or stop by our lot check out inventory and have your questions answered by one of our professionals.
Here in Pennsylvania, we have a variety of landscapes to choose from when camping. With a combination of sweeping rivers, roaring waterfalls, smooth valleys and towering mountains across the state, you’ll never run out of beautiful campgrounds.
Although the rounded peaks of the Appalachians may look intimidating, we can guarantee that the experience camping in the mountains is unforgettable. But such a beautiful landscape comes with a lot of danger, and camping in the mountains is particularly risky. At Juniata Valley RV, we want to be sure that your experience along the Appalachian trail is all positive. So, we made this list of tips for safely camping in the mountains.
If you’ve never been overlanding, or even camped, in the mountains you’ll need to plan ahead. Our best advice for camping in the mountains is to make sure you set up camp on the leeward side of the mountain. On the leeward side, you’re better protected from the wind. Especially at a higher altitude, you’ll have less wind to deal with. The weather is often milder in general on the leeward side of the mountain.
Once you’ve researched the area and have an idea of where you’re headed, you need to prepare for anything. Make sure to bring extra fuel, in case you end up somewhere you didn’t expect and need to do a little more driving than planned.
It’s also a good idea to bring any maps you can find of the area, and a GPS if you have one. These will help you figure out where you are in case of an emergency. Plus, it’s a good camping (or hiking) rule of thumb to keep a standalone GPS on you at all times.
Part of planning ahead is planning with other people. Traveling in groups is always safer than traveling alone. Even if you’re an experienced off-road RVer, we strongly recommend bringing at least one other person with you. If you don’t have a family member or friend willing to adventure through the mountains with you, try joining a local camping group. This can be an in-person group or an online group. An easy way to meet people with common interests is through a Facebook group, for example, for RV enthusiasts in your state. If you prefer to meet the old fashioned in-person way, research local clubs, trainings or seminars focused on RVing or camping. These are great ways to find people interested in RVing and willing to join you on your next trip.
If bringing someone with you isn’t an option, we strongly recommend telling someone where you’re going. Let them know the general area you plan to stay in, or the campground you’re staying at, and how long you plan to be there. This is a last line of safety precautions when it comes to overlanding, camping, or even hiking safely.
Bring the right supplies
The right supplies are essential to safely camping in the mountains. This, of course, starts with your basic RV safety supplies. Bring a first-aid kit, basic tools, extra food and water, and any other supplies you’d normally take on a camping trip.
But, camping in the mountains comes with extra risks. Aside from plenty of water, we recommend bringing a whole bunch of bananas. In high altitude areas, staying hydrated is essential to keeping your electrolytes balanced. While water is helpful, we also recommend high-potassium foods like bananas. Potassium helps prevent muscle cramps and headaches that can occur in high altitudes, especially when people aren’t used to the elevation.
If you’re like the writer of this blog and hate bananas, that’s okay! Here are some other high potassium foods: oranges, cantaloupe, honeydew, potatoes, peas, cucumbers, apricots and grapefruits.
Aside from high altitude food, we recommend bringing some mountain-specific supplies. This includes extra stakes and ropes. In mountainous areas, winds are going to be much stronger than they are near sea level. You’ll need to tie down nearly everything, like tablecloths and tarps. Having supplies to secure your materials in place will make your trip much easier.
A working vehicle is essential for safely RVing, especially in the mountains. The Appalachian Mountains are known for their notoriously rough terrain and steep slopes. Your vehicle needs to be prepared to handle rocky paths, rushing streams and sharp inclines.
You need to trust the truck you take RVing. The first thing you should do is check all the fluids in your vehicle. Check the fluid level and cleanliness, and take your car for a preemptive oil change if one is needed soon.
Next thing to check is underneath your truck. Make sure that the steering and suspension links are tightened and in good shape. Check that the brakes are operating well, and that the brake pads are in good condition.
The last thing to check before your trip is your tires. They should be in good shape, not well worn, and have the appropriate tread for the environment you’re about to take on. Mud tires are often a good choice when you’re driving off-road, but you should research the best tires for wherever you’re headed. If you don’t want to change tires every time you go camping off-grid, all-terrain tires are a good way to meet in the middle.
While all of these are important parts of your vehicle to check, you should be confident in the truck you take RVing. A well-maintained vehicle is essential for safely camping in the mountains. When you’re camped out in the middle of the Appalachians, the last thing you need is a vehicle malfunction. And stuck on the mountainside is the last place you want to be.
This blog includes just the basics when it comes to camping in the mountains. While bringing the right supplies and checking on your truck are important steps, it will always be dangerous to camp off-grid. We strongly urge you to bring other people with you, newbie or not.
Once you’ve got your supplies and you’re ready to take on the Appalachian Mountain range, Juniata Valley RV is here to assist you in the most important step – choosing your trailer. We’ve got plenty of RVs on the lot, and many are equipped for off-road camping. Stop in to take a look at our units in person, or give us a call to find out what we can do for you.
Summer is just around the corner and beach vacation destinations are booking up fast. Although we love our home state of Pennsylvania, its noticeably lacking in ocean views, so we’re hitching up the travel trailer, hopping in the truck and heading east to the Jersey Shore. Enjoy summer sunshine and peaceful ocean waves, splash around with the kids at the water park, or relax with a drink by the pool at these twelve gorgeous campgrounds by the Jersey Shore.
Ocean View Resort is easily one of the best campgrounds on the Jersey Shore with tons of water activities inside and outside the park. One camp amenity sure to be a hit is the Buccaneer Bay Splash Park – a pirate themed water park in the campground! Play on the “anchored” pirate ship, spray water on unsuspecting parents, and slide down the wreckage into the shallow waters. The campground is pet friendly and has access to Greenbriar Pond for relaxing catch and release fishing. Other notable camp amenities include the Ocean View Café, the lake pavilion, two playgrounds, an 18-hole mini golf course, free boat storage during your stay and more!
In Ocean View, New Jersey, Ocean Isle Campground offers RV, tent and cabin sites for campers of every style. The 28-acre campground provides easy access to all your favorite south Jersey towns, historic Cape May to action-packed Atlantic City and all the beaches in between. The campground includes a large pool to cool off, two playgrounds and plenty of group activities.
On TripAdvisor Baker’s Acres is ranked the number one campground in Little Egg Harbor, New Jersey, thanks to the mixture of on-campground activities and local history hubs. The campground includes games like horseshoes, bocce ball, volleyball and even has a dedicated photo op spot. The campground was founded in 1968 by the Baker Family, giving it a family-owned feel. You can also dive into the local, and surprisingly bloody, history of a small town like Egg Harbor – first mentioned by Capitan Cornelius Jacobsen May in 1614.
Just a few miles from Long Beach Island, this pirate themed campground is a treasure chest of fun for the whole family. The campground paths have pirate-themed names like Peg Leg or Calico Jack, and you can enjoy sea-themed activities such as fishing, crabbing, kayaking and more. On the not-so-pirate side, the campground includes a camp store, dog park and arcade.
Connect with the nature of the Garden State at this campground for all ages located in the heart of Cape May County. Just minutes away from South Jersey beaches, enjoy splashing in the waves, playing in the sand and relaxing in the sun. In the evening, nearby local boardwalks open along the shore with food, shops and more. Just a few on-camp activities include a game room, ice cream parties, family hay rides, basketball, horseshoes, volleyball and more.
Nestled along the Toms River, this Jersey campground provides fresh water and saltwater fun. Wake up to a view of the Toms River from your RV’s window, and travel every day to the nearby public beaches, Atlantic City and even the Big Apple. Campground amenities include a swimming pool, sports courts and scheduled weekend events. The campground is a few miles from public golf courses, horseback riding, boardwalks, water parks and more.
Lake & Shore RV Resort is a step up from your normal campground. Its biggest summer attraction is the full water park, complete with slides. The park has its own beach entrance with a private fishing pier and boat dock. On the resort beach, relax in the lounge chairs, play a game of beach volleyball, cool off in the water and adventure around the campground.
This New Jersey campground is packed with activities you won’t find at many other campgrounds. Ponderosa includes a pirate ship play area, swing and slide area, cornhole, hammocks, fields and more. Ponderosa is most well known for its Little Hooves Farm. Little Hooves Farm, established in 2013, is home to goats, chickens, ducks, mini horses and a cow! Come by to feed the animals, play, pet and get a few pony kisses. Nearby, visit Avalon Beach, historic Cape May, Wildwood beach boardwalk, Ocean City boardwalk and more.
This tranquil RV resort is tucked away in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. Fish in the campground lake, swim in the pool or enjoy a good book on the poolside lounge chairs. Chestnut Lake provides easy access to the beautiful Jersey Shore beaches, neon-lit Atlantic City and bustling boardwalk nightlife. Nearly each weekend is booked with campground events. Each weekend has a kid-centered theme such as space, hot dogs, s’mores, pets, holidays and more. You can visit this page to read the weekend event schedule!
Midway between Cape May and Wildwood, New Jersey sits Holly Shores Camping Resort. Holly Shores has been family owned since 1968 and is known for being fun for all ages. They have more than 300 large shaded RV campsites and offer vacation or seasonal camping reservations. They accommodate RVs up to 42 feet long and offer themed weekends, daily activities and equipment rentals for endless summer fun.
Sea Pines RV Resort is loaded with quiet campsites and surrounded with peaceful woods, while just a few miles from the beautiful beaches of Cape May. The campground includes shuffleboard, basketball, a game room, volleyball and more. It’s right near the beach, has on-campground fishing opportunities and waterfront sites. It you’re looking for luxury Jersey Shore RVing, Sea Pines is the place for you.
If you stay at one of our best campgrounds on the Jersey Shore, make sure to let us know! In need of a new RV or RV parts? Stop by Juniata Valley RV right here in Pennsylvania. Our RV experts will be happy to help you choose the right unit for you. Be sure to kick off camping season right!
One of camping’s many delights is campfire cooking. Whether you’re spending the weekend in a tent or choosing to experiment outside the RV kitchen, cooking over a campfire can be a fun option. Enjoying roasted eggplant or breakfast bacon and eggs with the family is a great way to bond, not to mention a lot of fun! To help you get inspired to try your hand at fire-roasted dinner plans, we recommend these easy campfire dinners.
One of the most popular campfire dinner methods are foil packs. This method of camp cooking usually involves meat and vegetables wrapped in tin foil and roasted on the fire. This savory meal includes a mixture of healthy veggies topped with your preferred type of meatloaf. Replace the grill instructions with about 40 minutes carefully watched by the campfire and you’ve got the perfect healthy camp dinner.
Every good day at the campground starts with a great breakfast. This nutritious breakfast is made with bacon, potatoes, egg, cheese and any other breakfast additions your family prefers. Simply toss your ingredients into a cast iron skillet and let them cook over the slow burning coals for a warm, delicious homemade breakfast.
If meat isn’t your desired dish, try this flavorful charred eggplant campfire dinner. Place your eggplant directly on the coals, which should be glowing red, and turn occasionally until the skins are blackened. Remove the skins, let them stand for about 30 minutes, then drizzle with olive oil and salt. Now you’re ready to tuck in!
A fun new take on pizza, this sandwich dish is a delicious campfire dinner option. Toss your favorite pizza ingredients between two slices of buttered bread and roast them on a sandwich iron for roughly ten minutes. Once the cheese is melted and the bread is golden brown, you’re ready to dig in.
Slow-roasted dessert over the campfire doesn’t have to stop at s’mores – although no one is complaining when the marshmallows and graham crackers are brought out. If you’re itching to try something a bit more flavorful, we recommend these apple pie packets. Using the foil packet grilling method, mix apples, sugar, cornstarch, butter, cinnamon and lemon juice to create personal apple pie dishes. Top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for the perfect dessert. Yes, we know this isn’t dinner, but it’s so good we had to include it anyway.
Be the talk of the campground with this campsite jambalaya. Cooked in a large pot or wok over a grill or campfire with a grate, this deliciously filling dish is a sure hit. Mix the recommended jambalaya ingredients, or stick to your favorite family recipe, and let it cook over the campfire until the rice is tender and the shrimp is perfectly pink.
Warming hot dogs over the campfire is a well-loved tradition for campers everywhere. But if you’re looking to spice things up a bit, try grilling brats and veggies on a cast iron skillet. Caramelize onions and warm your preferred variety of peppers on a cast iron skillet for a more flavorful version of fire-roasted hot dogs.
These easy campfire dinners are perfect for anyone looking to mix things up when it comes to camp cooking. Try making your meals over the campfire and let us know how it goes. If you’re in need of a new RV to take you camping this season, Juniata Valley RV is here to supply you with towable trailers, motorhomes, truck campers and compact units. Visit our site to see what we have in stock or call 1 (877) 714-0415 to speak with our friendly sales staff.
Plan the stops you’ll make on your trip and map out your route. Discover local businesses, scenic outlooks, national parks and more stops that Roadtrippers knows you’ll pass by.
One of the most popular directions apps, Waze lets you know what’s up ahead. Other Waze users can report traffic, accidents, police officers, construction and more. Waze can even redirect you based on this information!
This navigation app includes RV-specific routing. You can enter your RV dimensions and see road restrictions for an easy drive. This app even has dependable offline navigation for when your signal is spotty.
Find the closest gas station with the best price. GasBuddy will show you all the gas stations near you and their prices so you can save money on the road.
Created by the History Channel, History Here will show you nearby historical sites and let you know what happened there. You can explore thousands of nearby points, and History’s experts are always adding more!
This RV park directory app, developed by a full-time RVer, will help you get inside info from the RV community. Users can rate campgrounds, enter information and add photos of RV parks around the US and Canada.
Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder
Oh, Ranger! will point you to the best parks near you. See park maps, available amenities and background info. You can search by things to do (bird watching, horseback riding, fishing, etc.) and ask other park lovers for advice.
Access more than 100,000 trail maps from anywhere with AllTrails. You can even filter by trail length, difficulty rating, dog friendliness, best views and more to make sure you find exactly the trail you want. Stay safe with GPS tracking, and share your pace, distance, max speed and more with friends!
Star gaze on cloudy nights and find constellations with Star Chart. Just point your phone at the sky and Star Chart will outline and name the constellations you’re looking at.
Offline Survival Manual
Get survival tips without access to the internet with the Offline Survival Manual. This app has organized info on making a fire, finding food and more. Filter your search by subject or climate to find exactly what you need with ease.
First Aid by American Red Cross
Be prepared with first aid guidance for all kind of situations. The Red Cross app provides step-by-step first aid instructions, video guides and safety tips. The app works without internet connection and lets you easily navigate between different types of emergencies.
One of the most highly rated weather apps, AccuWeather will help you plan ahead and stay safe from extreme weather conditions. The app includes local radars, detailed forecasts and severe weather warnings.
The popular review app allows you to check out local shops and restaurants before you go. Read reviews and ratings from locals and other travelers and save yourself from bad business experiences when traveling.
Search for nearby campgrounds and get detailed information from other campers. The app provides campground suggestions, reviews, amenities, website links and more. You can filter by electrical hookups, ratings, price and campground type to find exactly what you want.
Find nearby RV dump stations with ease. Sani Dumps lets you search by postal code or your current location. Get information on dump stations and save your favorite stations.
Useful for traditional campers and boondockers, this app helps you find the perfect place to stay. Filter campsites by crowdedness, nearby facilities, safety and more. It even shows you where you can boondock and still get cell signal! You can also see low clearance bridges and tunnels nearby, which your RV may not fit through, and read reviews of nearby campsites.
This comprehensive outdoor app shows nearby places to camp, sort of like an Airbnb for RVers. From national parks to private drives, find the perfect location to park your RV with Hipcamp.