I took the time to meet with the guys and have quickly embraced the company and lifestyle – I have now camped 4 times in a Little Guy!! I am so happy to be here and perhaps I will be the one to answer the phone or your next on line chat!
This is the first email from my travels into the national parks of the west. I have not been able to connect with my Verizon wireless connection to send a message before now. Fortunately, the Wahweap Resort and Campground, where I am now located, has wi-fi and I can get this first installment out. Wahweap is located on Lake Powell in northern Arizona. I’m writing this at pool side which overlooks beautiful Lake Powell. This morning I witnessed the most spectacular sunrise I have ever seen. I looked out of the teardrop camper at 5am this morning and saw this incredible site. I hurriedly pulled on a pair of shorts and headed to the lake shore. The sun was still below the mountains to the east, but the light that it cast off of the clouds was indeed stunning. I have taken several pictures. However, I have not downloaded them as yet so, I’ll attach one on my next email.
I got started on the trip on 3 May. The first 3 days involved getting to my 1st National Park. Overnight camping was spent at Henryetta, OK where I stayed in the parking lot of the “Pig Out Palace”. Hey, it was free other than the cost of my pig out buffet dinner that night. Despite the name it wasn’t too bad. The next night was spent in Santa Rosa, NM. I had been in Santa Rosa about 30 years ago. I had been traveling along I-40 about lunch time and pulled over here. I ate at a small drive-in style restaurant and had the best Mexican meal I ever had, even to this day. I remembered that I had Chile Relinos. I was hoping of course, that this little restaurant was still in business. I couldn’t remember the name, but knew that it was a drive-in that had indoor seating. I drove up and down the main street, but couldn’t find it. I finally stopped at the city hall and ask if anyone remembered such a place. I was told that it had burned down a number of years ago. However, it had been built back and was no longer a drive-in, but now a regular cafe and owned an operated by the same family. The old man was now about 80 years old and supervised his children and used his same recipes as always. The Chile Relinos were as good as ever much to my delight.
I camped that night at Santa Rosa State Park which was very nice. I met Mark and Holly, a nice couple from Albuquerque. Mark persuaded me to go on to
Durango, CO for my next stop instead of Cuba, NM. I’m glad I did because Cuba is nothing more than a blink as you go through. My plan had been to camp in the National Forest there which would have been fine except I would have had to shovel snow to make a spot to camp. I went on to Durango, but couldn’t get a camp site along the river as Mark had suggested. Instead I went to the WalMart parking lot. WalMart always welcomes RV’ers for overnight camping, BUT, not in Durango. I had been there about an hour and having a nice sandwich for dinner, when along came a Durango police officer who said, “You’re not planning to spend the night here are you?”. I told him I was and had gone inside the store and was told that there is a city ordinance against camping overnight there, that no one is ever bothered by the police in enforcing the ordinance. Well, I show up and the cops decide to enforce the ordinance! On to scout for another place to stay. I finally, ended up in a factory parking lot which is another story in itself, but too much to go into it now. At any rate, I ended up back in the WalMart parking lot at 4AM. I figured I had left earlier and coming back at 4AM didn’t constitute staying overnight.
On May 6th I went on to Moab, UT and had arrived at my first national park destination, Arches NP. I stayed in a campground called Hittle Bottom along the Colorado River. The location had an excellent view overlooking the river with mountains in the background. There is more story here regarding the wind and dust. I’ll just say that on the morning I left, May 9th, I was awaked at 4:15AM with the wind blowing so hard, I thought the camper was going to blow over. I hurriedly got the camper hooked up to the truck and latterly blew out of the there.
In spite of the wind and dust at the campground, I did spend two great days in Arches NP. This is a magnificent park with huge mountains, monoliths and arches of sandstone. On May 7 I hiked to Delicate Arch which is about a 3 mile round trip and well worth the hike. The next day I had a permit to hike the Fiery Furnace, which can only be done with a group led by a ranger. This hike required a lot of rock scrambling and squeezes through slot canyons in the sandstone. Some of the slots were so tight I was concerned about getting through. However, the ranger leading the was larger than me so, I figured if the ranger made it, I could to. I have a lot of great pictures of Arches and will attach a few here.
On 9 May I left Arches for Zion NP. I made a half day stop at Canyonlands NP on the way to see Mesa Arch which is another stunner in its beauty. I got back on the road to Zion in early afternoon. I got to wondering, in my haste to leave the Hittle Bottom campground, if I had closed the one window I had opened overnight on the camper. Since it is now a mixture of precipitation including rain, sleet and snow that I’ve been driving through for the past 3 hours, it might be a good idea to check. Well you guessed it… the window was open and quilt, down comforter, sheets and mattress were soaked. Nothing I can do now but close the window and go on. I arrived at Zion in early evening and explained my predicament to the ranger as I checked into the Watchman Campground at Zion. She informed me that there was a Laundromat in the town of Springdale, UT which is on the very edge of Zion. I got into the my designated camp site, for which I had made reservations a few months ago, and proceed to strip the bed and head off to the Laundromat and dried the wet items. Of course, it took the next two day of propping the mattress up inside the camper with windows open and roof vent fan running to get the mattress dry. Fortunately, it dried and there is no sign of mildew.
I did several hikes at Zion including the strenuous and difficult Angels Landing. This trial is featured on Youtube for those interested to take a look. I have no adjectives to describe Zion. You just have to see it for yourself and decide. To me it is incredible!
I left Zion on May 13 and arrived here at the Wahweap Resort yesterday evening. Lake Powell, as I mentioned earlier, is beautiful. I leave here tomorrow for the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.
Product Information: The Power Out Kit is a must have for camping or at home – Each kit contains:
Purchase at the Little Guy Online Store]]>
I felt like I was a celebrity. The old timers shared stories of their own experienced with tear drop type campers. We were the smallest camper, but we had all the necessities in a small package. We were next to huge bus and pop up tent campers. Everyone thought the extended ramp for ATV’s or toys was a great idea. I am in love with the AC, and the king bed is definitely big enough to sleep 3 if you are friends. The AC, definitely kept out the Florida heat and humidity.
A storm rolled through and we were dry and warm. I haven’t had a chance to try out the stove and sink, but am going out again this weekend to put them to the test. It was great I had the trailer wired for electric. All my other electric appliances meant I haven’t had to use the propane stove yet.
I want to share a funny story about the propane stove. I bought a small specialized tank to fit in the tongue box. My friend and I attached everything and were trying to start the stove. Two ladies and a grill, how funny is that. We played for 5 minutes hooking, rehooking, and trying to light the stove before I asked a neighbor guy to help. He promptly picks up the propane tank and said, well no wonder it doesn’t work, the tank is empty. We had a good laugh and figured out that the camping store sells empty tanks. Go figure! This camper is perfect for a single person or family to camp. I feel safe being able to lock the doors, and have all the necessities with none of the issues with tent set up. I rolled in, and was set up in no time. Thank you for being there for all my questions. I look forward to future camping adventures.
LARRY CROWE / Ap
French Chicken in a Pot from Cook’s Illustrated uses the French technique of roasting a whole chicken in a Dutch oven.
The cooking times are for a 41/2- to 5-pound bird. A 31/2- to 41/2-pound chicken will take about an hour to cook, and a 5- to 6-pound bird will take close to 2 hours.
Use a 5- to 8-quart Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid.
French Chicken in a Pot
Start to finish: 2 hours (20 minutes active)
1 whole roasting chicken (41/2 to 5 pounds), giblets removed and discarded, wings tucked under back
2 teaspoons kosher salt or 1 teaspoon table salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1 small celery stalk, chopped (about 1/4 cup)
6 medium garlic cloves, peeled and trimmed
1 bay leaf
1 medium sprig fresh rosemary (optional)
1/2 to 1 teaspoon lemon juice
1. Adjust an oven rack to lowest position. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
2. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.
3. In a large Dutch oven over medium, heat the oil until just smoking. Add the chicken, breast-side down. Scatter the onion, celery, garlic, bay leaf, and rosemary around chicken.
4. Cook until the breast is lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Using a wooden spoon inserted into cavity of bird, flip chicken breast-side up and cook until chicken and vegetables are well browned, 6 to 8 minutes.
5. Remove the Dutch oven from the heat. Place a large sheet of foil over the pot, then cover tightly with the lid.
6. Transfer the pot to the oven and cook until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees when inserted in thickest part of breast and 175 degrees in thickest part of thigh, about 80 to 110 minutes.
7. Transfer the chicken to carving board, tent with foil and let rest for 20 minutes.
8. Meanwhile, strain chicken juices from the pot through fine-mesh strainer into a fat separator, pressing on solids to extract liquid. Discard the solids. You should have about 3/4 cup of juices).
9. Allow the liquid to settle 5 minutes, then pour into a saucepan and set over low heat.
10. Carve the chicken, adding any accumulated juices to the saucepan. Stir lemon juice into the saucepan to create the jus, or sauce. Serve the chicken, passing jus at table.]]>
Little Guy Trailers and Paha Que Wilderness have just completed an epic backcountry tour of the Gold Mining areas in the old Fort Tyson area.
Participants traveled from San Diego (main group), Poway, Torrance, Fresno, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Utah and Michigan via Miami (some people use these Teardrops for long term). The tow vehicles varied from radical Off-Road Jeeps to simple family cars… all easily accessing the main camp site in the Plomosa foothills.
It’s amazing how a couple hundred yards off the pavement places you in the same terrain where Wyatt Earp lived!
Both novice and experts were mixed together in comfort as our guide and counselor Jeff Basford of Paha Que Wilderness organized and led a treat in the ultra-dry wilderness. We were surrounded by lava rock formations, gas vents, dozens of cacti, gravel like surfaces of dark volcanic pebbles and rugged volcanic flows.
The history of this area is rich and steeped in the Old West. From the mid 1800’s, hundreds of mines were claimed and worked by individuals and consortiums with rudimentary methods being employed next door to highly-engineered systems. Of the more fascinating accounts was the influx of the French prospectors. The cabins they built can still be seen and visited (rock structures with double wall base). These miners utilized the placer mining techniques and their tailings can be easily identified. Typically, there was a dump area within several feet consisting of old meat cans, soup and food tins intertwined with wagon and equipment skeletons.
The desert is lovely this time of year. Many cactus are blooming and the bees are busy. Although in my mind I expected absolute dryness, it was off set by the numerous Palo Verde trees with it’s vivid light-green bark. The Ocotillo cactus featured wonderful red blossoms plus the royal color of Barrel and Prickly Pear cactus flowers. Apparently, this year with the increased rains, we caught the bloom even at the end of March.
This particular trip was unseasonably warm …. around 105 degrees during the day and 90’s at night. We were very glad for the powered roof vent in our Little Guy Rough Rider model… when an inversion occurred in the middle of the night rendering our exhaust mode useless, I simply reversed the fan direction and wah-lah, we enjoyed a comfortable desert night on our queen-size bed.
What a great way to camp with these Teardrop Trailers. They have just enough storage capacity to make the campsite perfect for a fresh-air outing with amenities. We noticed the various methods employed by our neighbors and it really boils down to personal needs and choices. We saw barbeques next to Dutch Ovens and discussions of utilizing Sun Ovens with the unlimited power supply of the sun. We witnessed solar power panels recharging battery systems and practical Teardrop designed side rooms attached to off-set the heat and provide a lee-side breezeway (built by Paha Que our organizer). A couple Teardrops even employed Air Conditioners with a small generator purring nearby and solar shower cabanas (no need for towels in the super dry air).
This event will hopefully launch into an annual outing with the possibility of a second event into the backcountry with 4×4 vehicles only (and high clearance campers). I anticipate quite a number of participants joining us as there was plenty of area for many more campers.
If you have a Teardrop or Aliner and want to join in, please send your email address to us and we’ll include you in subsequent notices of our campouts. So far, we still want to catch Death Valley in the late fall or early spring, a mountain region lake in Arizona waiting for us on an Indian Reservation and a winery near Julian which would be perfect on a moonless night.
Our sincere thanks go to Jeff Basford and Mike Greaves of Paha Que Wilderness Camping Systems, our organizer, for designing a worthy trip with great historical and geographical account of the area. We also want to thank our participants for becoming good friends in a matter of a few days! There’s nothing like camping buddies.
Most of all we want to thank Camping Life Magazine for joining us with the trip. We should see a great article by fall with the possibility of a cover theme on Teardropping in the remote desert. We highly recommend subscribing to this publication as they endeavor to cover the type of camping near and dear to us all.
See you next trip!
Spring is now here and it is a great season for us because we get a great number of orders for the upcoming camping season. Already we are producing more trailers than ever this year, and we are all very excited…
None-the-less, I am very glad to be aboard the Little Guy crew. Check out our website and give us a call if you have any questions. Also make sure you stop in and check out our indoor showroom! Hurry quick and get your order placed in time for the camping season! I hope I can help you with any questions or concerns you may have! Have a great spring and Happy Trails!
They ordered with some custom requests for graphics, spare, cargo pouches, etc…
He recently wrote us and shared the following:
“Thanks for all your help in getting our LG. We love it! It pulled quite well until we hit the big hills. We had to go down to 4th gear on that one, but cruised right up in 4th gear at 50-55mph which isn’t a major problem. This is a 6% grade so I was expecting to have to gear down. Right now we are working on setting it up the way we want it and will take a trip to try it out in March or April in preparation for our trip back east and visiting the factory!!”]]>