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The Best RV Campgrounds for PA Families

We can’t think of a better way to spend quality time with your family than to hit the road in an RV. RV travel is adventurous and brings the family together unlike any other type of vacation. Any campground can be a great campground for a family RV vacation, but there are some that provide more family-friendly amenities than others, such as water slides, organized event nights, and outdoor activities. Juniata Valley RV’s home state is packed with campgrounds that offer fun for the whole family, so we’ve selected just a few of our favorites so your next family RV vacation in Pennsylvania will be a blast.

Pocono Mountains

Otter Lake Camp Resort

One of the most popular destinations for vacationers in Pennsylvania is the Pocono Mountains. This area is blanketed in natural beauty, rich forests and riverside beaches. If your family loves the outdoors, you won’t find a better vacation, and Otter Lake Camp Resort is the perfect family-friendly spot to adventure from. In addition to activities like swimming or fishing in the stocked 60-acre lake, there are planned activities so you’ll never have a dull moment. They offer things like fire truck rides, bingo nights, archery lessons and ceramics classes, so there’s something for everyone. And since you’re right in the heart of the Poconos, there are plenty of day trips to get out and explore the area as well.

Blue Rocks Family Campground

This campground in eastern Pennsylvania gets its name from a massive boulder field on its 100 acres. It’s a wonderful escape for families who like to spend their time exploring, as the property is home to miles of hiking trails, rock formations and streams. Blue Rocks bills itself as a “hiker’s paradise” where you can access the Appalachian Trail and see formations such as The Pinnacle and Pulpit Rock. That certainly doesn’t mean you have to be outdoorsy to enjoy your trip here, though. Does the family love classic cars? Check out the campground’s classic car garage. Like old-fashioned fun? Stop by the 1930s era soda fountain bar at Woody’s Filling Station. Need a campsite with conveniences? There’s a snack bar, gift shop, general store, propane station and golf cart rentals. No matter your interests, you’ll find something fun to do at Blue Rocks.

Hersheypark

Hersheypark Camping Resort

Everyone has heard of Hershey, Pennsylvania – if not the town, you know the candy company by the same name. Originally founded as a way for workers at the Hershey factory to have a little fun, the Hersheypark theme park is one of the biggest attractions in Hershey. Here, you’ll find water slides, roller coasters and candy-themed rides that both kids and grown-ups will love. If it sounds like the perfect family vacation, you’re right! And luckily Hersheypark makes an RV trip here easy with the Hersheypark Camping Resort. You’ll set up shop just outside of the theme park at a traditional campground and enjoy VIP park perks like early access, preferred pricing, and guaranteed Hersheypark reservations for the days of your visit. Of course, there’s a country store on-site that’s packed with treats and more. You’ll undoubtedly make some sweet memories here!

Splash Magic Campground

If a water park meets campground is your family’s idea of summer fun, head to Splash Magic Campground in Northumberland. This spot lives up to its name with waterside fun for the whole family. Here, you’ll find multiple pools, a splash park and two massive water slides for the kids to enjoy. You can also fish in the campground lake Dolphin Cove, rent paddleboat and rowboats, or try your hand at taking down the competition in water gun-armed bumper boats. The kids will love the foam pit and jumping pillow, and everyone can sit back and take in a movie at the outdoor theater. You’re also not far from an amusement park and the Little League Museum if you want to check out the area while you’re there.

Pennsylvania Dutch Country

Lake-In-Wood Campground

Another popular vacation draw in PA is visiting Pennsylvania Dutch Country. A family vacation here is equal parts educational and out of the ordinary, and it’s one your family will never forget. The camp sits come with all the modern conveniences like full hookups, concrete pads and access to laundry and bathroom facilities, but the experience is like stepping back in time. The park’s fictional hosts are gnomes, and you’ll find the theme woven throughout. Visit the Gnome Cafe for a bite to eat, or pick up a few things you forgot at the Trading Post. There’s also an ornate old-fashioned entertainment hall on site complete with a pipe organ. When it comes to activities, there’s plenty. Play a game of mini golf, basketball, volleyball or softball, hit the pool or rent rowboats, paddleboat or bicycles. You can also participate in organized activities like ceramics classes, bingo and fire engine rides. Don’t forget to venture out to see even more of Amish country while you’re in the area!

The Best RV Campgrounds for PA Families

Whether you’re headed for a theme park, the mountains, or Amish country, there’s an RV vacation that awaits you at one of these family-friendly campgrounds in Pennsylvania. To get started with your search for an RV that fits the whole family, search Juniata Valley RV’s online inventory or contact us today to speak with someone on our expert RV sales staff in Mifflintown, Pennsylvania.

Aliners Are Winning the Hearts of RV Buyers

“It’s not about being small, it’s about doing more, with less”  Greg McAdoo said it best. It’s a common misconception that bigger is always better – and The Aliner is a perfect example of getting more for less, while doing less and getting more. This amazing camper that was once an idea has become one of the worlds most favorite travel toys and continues to surprise us with adventure and quality products. Lets dive into the reasons why Aliners are winning the hearts of RV Buyers.

The History of The Aliner Camper

A lot of really great business ideas started out as hobbies. This is a great example of that. In the early 1970s, Ralph Tait had an idea so he went into his garage in Bend, Oregon and began tinkering. Several weeks and a few blisters later, he emerged with a revolutionary design for the first A-frame pop-up camper. It was sensible. It was different. And it was light enough to be towed with just about any vehicle. Friends wanted one. Family wanted one. Friends of family wanted one. As word of mouth spread, Ralph found himself making more campers out of his garage. That’s when Ralph’s sons had their own bright idea. Why not turn this hobby into a real business?

The family moved to Pennsylvania and began making Aliner campers. Two brothers would build one. The third brother would hitch it to the family station wagon and drive across the country until he sold it. When he returned, the brothers would have another Aliner waiting. After years of hard work and several hundred thousand miles on the poor station wagon, the family retired in 2007. Today they continue to build every Aliner with the same quality, craftsmanship and pride as Ralph and his sons did for over 30 years.

Aliner Classic

The Classic

This is the model that started it all. All other Aliner models are variations of this original design. Classic earned its name by satisfying customers for over 30 years. It’s not the largest or smallest. It’s not the heaviest or lightest. It’s what Classic owners like to call “just right.” Versatile, adaptable, comfortable with everything you want and nothing you don’t. The Classic is just that …classic.

Aliner Expedition

The Expedition

Ready to handle any adventure, Expedition offers nearly double the “living space”, 30% more storage room, taller counter tops, taller beds, flush mount euro style sink and stove, and our highest capacity chassis compared to our other models. Even as our largest model, it weighs less than 2,000 lbs and is towable by many fuel-efficient vehicles. Expedition is perfect model for the whole family or the couple that just wants more room.

 

aliner set up

 

Aliner LXE

LXE

The Aliner LXE was truly designed to be your home on the road. The standard hard-walled front dormer provides ample space and head room for the built-in shower and cassette toilet. All of this in a package that weighs less than 2000 lbs.

Ranger Aliner

Ranger 12

There comes a time in life when you simply can no longer sleep on the ground. Enter Scout, the Aliner for traditional tent campers who want or need more than a tent. Scout offers the essentials amenities as well as quality construction, affordability, and ample storage space for all your gear. With a roof over your head and a nice soft bed to sleep on, you’ll find Scout is the perfect platform from which to launch all your outdoor adventures.

Aliner Scout

Scout

There comes a time in life when you simply can no longer sleep on the ground. Enter Scout, the Aliner for traditional tent campers who want or need more than a tent. Scout offers the essentials amenities as well as quality construction, affordability, and ample storage space for all your gear. With a roof over your head and a nice soft bed to sleep on, you’ll find Scout is the perfect platform from which to launch all your outdoor adventures.

There’s no doubt that Aliners are winning the hearts of RV Buyers. It’s small but fierce, lightweight yet expansive inside and easy to tow. We have new and used units and are confident we can help you pick out the perfect Aliner for your adventures. Contact us today or click any of the photos above to check out each model!

 

aliner

Fifth Wheel or Travel Trailer: Which One is Right for Me?

Here at Juniata Valley RV, we understand how important purchasing the right RV for you and your needs are. It takes lots of necessary time and research, but if done thoroughly, it is well worth it in the end. Deciding between a fifth wheel and travel trailer is a choice many RVers must face. Lucky for you, we’re here to help you decipher just which one is right for you.

The main difference between a fifth wheel and travel trailer is the way they’re towed. A fifth wheel is secured to the bed of the towing vehicle, while a travel trailer is hitched to the bumper. There are so many differences between the two and even more questions to answer. So, let’s get started with the basics!

What is a fifth wheel?

A fifth wheel is a towable RV that is made by sort of cutting out a part of the RV so it is situated atop the truck bed and attached to the bed vertically. This type of towing can only be paired with a pickup truck that is fitted with a special hitch coupling.

Fifth wheels tend to be a tad more luxurious than travel trailers because it’s simply how they’re designed. They come equipped with the comforts of home, mostly because there’s space for it all. And, they use every square inch of room available for overhead storage. With a fifth wheel, you’ll a modern style along with a high level of comfort – floorspace included. Purchasing a fifth wheel will give you extra room, something often longed for in RVers. You can even find fifth wheels that are convertible to a toy hauler if you’re in need of a garage but can be converted back for sleeping space.

Here are the pros of a fifth wheel:

  • Floorplans are often roomier and no storage space is wasted.
  • They’re great for first-time towers because jackknifing rarely happens.
  • Usually is taller, allowing RVers to fully stand up instead of hunching over.
  • Normally easier to hitch than travel trailers, meaning less time to set up and tear down.
  • It can also be ideal for full-time RVing, seeing as they come with ample storage space and even king size floorplans for those wanting the more luxurious option.

 

Fifth wheel cons:

  • Fifth wheels are heavy, making them more difficult to tow and make for bad gas mileage.
  • They’re typically more expensive.
  • More storage in and outside means more maintenance.

 

What about a travel trailer?

The travel trailer is a general term that describes a towable that can be hitched to the back of any pickup truck. You do not need a special hitch as you do for the fifth wheel – travel trailers use a conventional hitch.

The travel trailer seems to come in endless shapes, styles, and sizes. Some come equipped with awesome outdoor kitchens. Some are only made with enough room for two. Others expand to sleep up to 12.

If you’re looking for a trailer that just sleeps one or two, you have the option of a pop-up or an expandable to look at. However, if you’re taking the whole family, you might need a full-family camper with a luxury kitchen and bathroom. Lastly, toy haulers are great if you need garage space for your favorite motor vehicle. They are so many choices, so start by deciding exactly what you’re needing the RV for. From there, you can narrow your search to make life a bit easier.

Now, for the travel trailer pros:

  • Travel trailers are usually much more affordable than a fifth wheel.
  • You don’t exactly need a truck to tow one of these – it can be done with an SUV.
  • It’s easier to boondock with a travel trailer because they can squeeze into a wider variety of settings.
  • Since they hook up at the bumper, they don’t take up any valuable truck bed space.
  • These are typically lighter than your average fifth wheel, meaning they’re often easier to tow.

Travel trailer cons:

  • They’re normally longer and make trailer sway more inevitable.
  • Not as much storage as fifth wheels.
  • They’re made smaller, so they are smaller than most RVs.
  • The ceilings are lower which can make the space feel cramped.

Which RV is right for me?

Here are a few things to think about before you make your RV purchase.

A fifth wheel might suit you if you already have a large truck you can tow it with and you enjoy taking luxury with you on the road. If you’re worried about maneuvering and towing your RV, fifth wheels are easier to handle. You also won’t have to worry about tight turns or jackknifing with a fifth wheel.

However, if you don’t want to buy another vehicle or have one just for RVing, a travel trailer might fit you better. These can fit any lifestyle, especially if you take a more practical approach to RVing and isn’t afraid to go without hookups. And, since there are so many options, you have a wider financial range. These also tend to be more budget-friendly.

When it comes to choosing between the two, it comes down to your personal needs and what features are most important to you. Do you already have a truck for towing? What’s your price range? Once you have answers to these questions, the choice will be clear to you! There’s no wrong way to RV, but doing ample research ahead of time will help you be happier with your purchase. For example, you may think a travel trailer suits you best, but after doing some homework, you find out the fifth wheel is more appealing to you.

Either way, both of these towables have their pros and cons, but matters most is that you’re happy with your RV and all the great features that come with it. If you have any questions, give us a call at (717) 436-8883 and one of our friendly staff members will help you choose the right RV for you.

Fifth Wheel or Travel Trailer? Which One is Right for Me?

Tips For Taking Your RV Out Of Winter Storage

Spring is approaching so it’s time to get ready for camping. Check out these tips for taking your RV out of winter storage before you get back on the road!

Basic Inspection

First thing’s first. Ensuring all the basics that require an appointment are good to go. This includes your power source, tires and propane. If these are all okay, lets proceed to the next step. If not, this leaves you enough time to make an appointment and proceed with getting your RV out of storage.

repair rv

Electrical

Electrical Power outlets, do they all work? If not, here is how to diagnose. Check generator circuit breaker(s) and reset. Next, check GFI outlet and reset after you turn on the generator. (We sometimes have to do that to get the outlets to work.) If you’re still having trouble, recheck and reset all your 120 Volt breakers in the main house panel after you turn on the generator. Check for power when you leave the generator. If the outlets still do not have power it may involve a power transfer switch. If so, contact our service department at (717) 436-8883 and we will help you get this fixed right away.

Sealing Leaks and Cracks

It may not seem like a big deal but when taking your RV out of storage you will want to check for leaks and cracks that may have occurred during off season. Moisture can seep in and create an RV owners nightmare: MOLD. Make sure to check all windows for old caulk, remove and repair the area with new caulk after. If it’s going to rain, wait until you know you’re going to have clear weather for at least 24 hours to ensure a clean repair.

Repairing Caulk

Washing RV

Taking your RV out of storage will require a good wash and wax. Some helpful tips would be to use a mild car washing soap, a big sponge for scrubbing and a microfiber towel to wipe and dry off eliminating any water spots. Make sure you wash the roof, the wheels, windows and panels. Check awnings for mold growth or tears as you may want to replace before hitting the road. Once you’re done with the wash and dry, apply a generous coat of wax to get that like-new shiny look.

Getting Back on the Road

taking your rv out of storage

Juanita Valley RV has an array of supplies you may need for repairs including awning accessories, plumbing supplies, variety of vent covers, light bulbs, drain hoses and so much more. 

tips for taking your rv out of winter storage

Dutch Oven Campfire Recipes

Well, everyone. It’s that time of year again – break out the Dutch oven and start your campfires! It will soon be cold outside, and there’s no better time to start thinking up some Dutch oven campfire recipes.

Dutch oven campfire recipes

In our opinion, one of the best parts of camping is creating delicious fireside dishes. Whether you’re a weekend warrior or a full-time RVer, it’s crucial to have a few reliable Dutch oven recipes up your sleeve.

We know the Dutch oven is heavy, but it’s such a key component in camping because it keeps your food hot and they’re easy to clean. All it takes is just a bit of care, and your Dutch oven will treat you well for years to come.

With that being said, here are a few of our favorite Dutch oven recipes that we can’t live without!

From the Dutch oven and cast iron experts themselves, this Mountain Man Breakfast from Lodge Cast Iron will feed a crowd and keep you fueled and energized until lunch.

Dutch oven campfire recipes

recipe c/o Lodge MFG

For something a little different, bring bar food to the mix and make nachos! It’s nearly impossible to mess them up and you can have lots of fun with them. If you’re serving a crowd, lay everything out and DIY it with a “make your own nachos” setup. Here’s a recipe for inspiration.

Dutch oven campfire recipes

recipe c/o Fresh off the Grid

For a heartier option, BBQ Dutch Oven Chicken and Potatoes will fill and warm you up. If you aren’t planning a camping trip soon but still want to try this, you can make it in a slow cooker or even on a stove.

Dutch oven campfire recipes

recipe c/o Clarks Condensed

We don’t know about you, but we’ll eat pasta anytime, anywhere. And when we came across this recipe for Baked Ziti, we had to tell you! It takes no time to pull together and you can toss in anything you like in your pasta.

recipe c/o 3 guys outside

Chili is great. But chili with cornbread on top? To die for. Camp Chili and Cornbread will have you going back for seconds. This recipe makes quite a bit, so you can cut it in half, or make it all and fry a few eggs to put on top for breakfast the next morning.

recipe c/o Honestly Yum

For us, fall is one of the best times for camping. It’s not scorching outside, and the fall foliage is breathtaking. But, it can get chilly at night! This Stuffed Bell Pepper Soup is the solution to those colder nights.

recipe c/o 50 campfires

Making soup by while camping is almost a given, but it’s time to get creative. You can even make these Dutch Oven Cheesy Garlic Bites dunk in your soup. It’s only five ingredients, two of which are seasoning. (Hopefully, you already have those in your RV pantry.) It also uses the frozen dough to have them ready in under an hour.

recipe c/o The Creative Mom

Who says you have to forego dessert when you camp? Not us. Try these Gooey Caramel Cinnamon Rolls when the sweet tooth is calling your name.

recipe c/o 50 campfires

So maybe cinnamon isn’t your cup of tea. No problem. This 3 Ingredient Blackberry Campfire Cobbler is sure to be a crowd-pleaser, even amongst the pickiest of eaters.

recipe c/o Midlife Healthy Living

 

What are your favorite Dutch oven recipes? Let us know!

RV Winterization Basics for Newbies

Are you planning to take your RV to a maintenance shop for the winterizing process? RV Winterization is a way to protect the plumbing system from the freezing temperatures that are quickly approaching. This is your chance to get ahead of the curb and make sure that your RV is ready to go for spring and not have to worry about the aftermath of not protecting it properly. Some RV’s come with specific winterizing instructions to make sure you know if there are any built-in controls.

RV Winterization Basics

You should winterize the RV by planning to protect the plumbing, the interior, exterior, and several other components. Plumbing seems to be the most common problematic issue that RVers face after the winter. It needs to be protected prior to freezing temperatures or you will be dealing with very expensive fixes.  As you begin to winterize, make a checklist of everything you need to purchase and everything you need to do to make sure that your RV is in prime condition when you are done.

Some things you need to purchase are:
  • Nontoxic RV antifreeze
  • Water Heater bypass kit
  • Something to clean the tank with

RV Winterization

You need to drain all of the water and dry the water lines. Open up the petcock and drain all of the water from the fresh-water tank. There are two lines, hot and cold. Recap everything and turn off faucets. At this point, you can bypass the water heater.  From this point, you install a water pump converter so you can add the antifreeze. Then you can drain and flush the other holding tanks.

Next, you need to open all of the faucets located inside the RV. Remember to get rid of any bit of water; this includes flushing toilets a few times to make sure all that water has left the bowl. You will start to see the antifreeze appear.  If you don’t already have one, you will have to get a blowout plug so you can blow air through all the water lines. Your air compressor will definitely come in handy for this. Now you can close everything up and you should be good to go! Replace any caps finish up!

You are officially winterized! Your RV is ready and set for the next season of all your camping adventures. We know this may seem like a lot, but as long as you have what you need, the whole process is not too difficult. Take these steps seriously and follow them carefully to avoid any costly mistakes!

If you are wanting to forgo the stress of winterizing your RV yourself, give the professionals a call. One of our highly trained technicians can walk you through the RV Winterization process and get you set up with an appointment today.

RV Winterization Basics for Newbies

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