Project Vintage Thunder

The latest on Project Vintage Thunder, by Airstream Life magazine. Sponsored by George M Sutton RV, Reese hitch, Dometic USA, PPG Paint, Axis Products, GSM Vehicles, and Zip-Dee. Vintage Thunder is an "honest" RV refurbishment and travelogue. We tell you what really happens ...

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Moreau, NY

The last few days of a big family vacation are often anti-climatic. The fun is over and there’s nothing left to do but rush back to home, back to obligations and appointments, back to work and school. For a lot of people, this is the inevitable conclusion.

I hate to do that, so we always try to block out some time for adventures along the route home. Today was mostly a driving day, but we did decide to stop a few hours short of home, in Moreau, NY at the Moreau Lake State Park. The idea was to enjoy a quiet state park setting and do a little swimming, since the weather is still abominably hot and humid. (I stepped out of the car at a rest area and it felt like my shoes were going to melt on the asphalt.)

When we arrived, the interior of Vintage Thunder was 103 degrees. And it turned out that the park had no electric sites, which meant no air conditioning. We turned both Fantastic Vents up to “3” (the highest setting) and hoped for the best.

By the way, the big Dometic refrigerator was maintaining a steady 41 degrees in that temperature. We had it on setting “4” (max was “5”) most of the day. In retrospect we should have pushed it to “5” since it’s best to keep food below 40 degrees to avoid the risk of bacterial growth. (Yes, we tow with the fridge on gas, and if we hadn’t the food would have been 80 degrees.)

While we were waiting for the trailer to cool down, we checked out the brochure to find the lake so we could take a nice swim. No luck – the lake was off-limits when a lifeguard was not on duty, which meant anytime after 6 pm. (We’ve got to get this country over the fear of liability!)

So we headed over to the “shower house” to chill out. We arrived to a sign that said, “NO ELECTRICITY. NO HOT WATER.” Well, the lack of hot water was not a problem – we wanted to cool off anyway. But at 7:45 pm, it was getting a bit dark amongst the trees and we had not brought flashlights along. Desperate, we hopped in the showers and bore up bravely as the ice-cold water hit our hot skins in the dark.

I’ll grant this: it did feel good, especially when we got out. But I can’t grant Moreau Lake SP “recommended” status.

When we got back the interior of Vintage Thunder was 88 degrees. With everything in the interior heat-soaked from a day of towing, it was remarkable we got it even that low in an hour. Now, we’ve got a thunderstorm overhead and with luck it will cool things off even more before bedtime. We’re comfortable enough thanks to the showers.

I think tonight is movie night – a DVD in the laptop. Probably some classic “Three Stooges” episodes … and maybe some popcorn …


At 1:56 PM, Anonymous said...

Have you considered a vent cover like Maxxair? When we travel in hot weather we open up the vent and put the fan on "1" or "2" to pull out the hot, stagnant air. These are also a benefit in the rain in that it permits your vent to be open all of the time.


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