My NEW, TRUE 4 Season (Outdoors RV) 5th Wheel – The Outside

Introducing my Outdoors RV “Glacier Peak” 5th Wheel

I’m going to start my “tour” of my new Outdoors RV Glacier Peak 5th wheel on the outside. I know that everyone loves to see the interiors of campers, but frankly, the outside is just as if not more important than what’s inside. As a point of encouragement, when you are considering a camper, you should spend as much time looking over the outside as you do enjoying the interior.

outdoors rv glacier peak F30RLS
My new Outdoors RV Glacier Peak in the first of my travels (a few days before arriving in McCall)

Outdoors RV: Built for 4 Season Living… REALLY!

The photo below, while NOT glamorous by any means depicts the ONLY plumbing that is not enclosed in the fully heated underbelly.

This 4 inch pipe is the ONLY exposed plumbing carrying liquids in an Outdoors RV – all other plumbing is enclosed in the heated underbelly.

A full video tour of the outside of my Outdoors RV Glacier Peak F30RLS

Written commentary follows below.

Outdoors RV – a TRUE 4 SEASON Camper

As I did my outside walk-around, did you catch what I said about the 2″ thick (solid foam) insulation in all the walls. What I didn’t note what that INCLUDES the walls of the slides AND the roof of the slides. This provides NEEDED insulation in areas that many (most?) manufacturers ignore.

How about the VERY LIMITED exposure of plumbing outside the sealed (and heated) underbelly? This is important to avoid freezeups – even if you’re in a region where temperatures only occasionally fall well below freezing! The (fully heated) underbelly also seems to be very well designed (see photos below). Its so solid, I’m not sure that even a mouse can find its way in! (Poor mice)

Another design feature I’ve grown to appreciate is the storage compartments under the nose. (Check ’em out again!) The entire area is diamond plated (that’s nice!) and the main compartment is split into two doors that open up and down (the lower door is closed in my video). This makes it easy to load “stuff” into the main compartment (and it is BIG) and when you open it, its less likely something will fall out!

I should mention the chassis is custom designed for the floor plan it supports. This produces a better pull as you travel and allows Outdoors RV to use tanks with VERY large capacities – 82 gallons fresh water, 72 gallons grey water, 65 gallons black water. Conclusion? This trailer IS truly designed for full time living and spending some serious time “off the grid!”

Last thought before I move to the next video – consider how much time I’ve spent talking about the outside (and underbelly) – to me this part of a camper is as (or more) important than the interior.

I’ve seen plenty of campers where the underbelly sags or has lots of tape used as sealant – not the case here!

Ok, next, its a few days (and TWO snowstorms) later, I have the skirting up. Allow me to share a few more observations as I complete my outside tour of my Outdoors RV Glacier Peak F30RLS.

A few additional thoughts –

The skirt is designed to stop air flow under the camper. The material is made of non-breathable vinyl (very heavy duty, sun resistant material). Contact me if you’re interested in getting a skirt for your camper (any type of camper) – they do VERY good work.

It ended up going down to 3F that next morning – and I notice a difference already in propane usage. In cold winter conditions, that can mean BIG savings in propane costs!

I LOVE the additional storage area where the kitchen trash can could be. I simply use plastic grocery bags instead. In a few days, I’m going to prepare an INSIDE TOUR of my new camper and will post a link HERE to that tour. STAY TUNED!

One thing you can be CERTAIN of… I purchased an extended service contract to cover my camper for 7 years – as I’ve said before I would not be without it. After the experiences I had with my prior camper – and its RARELY “the camper”, its the “3rd party components” that fail. I detail this in the post linked in this paragraph. If you’d like a quote for a “ESC” for your camper, contact me privately, I can help with that.

I also maintain a membership with CoachNet – for peace of mind while “on the road.” This is an emergency road service program that includes funds for hotel stays if your travel is delayed for a period of time. I’ve looked at other roadside service programs and this one tailored to the needs of a RV traveler.


When it comes to purchasing your next camper…

Want a “guide by your side” when searching for and buying your next camper? Someone who will have your back and help you navigate the choppy waters when purchasing an RV? Contact me! I now offer a Concierge RV Buying (and Selling) Service – click HERE to learn more.


How I came to know about Outdoors RV

I’ve been a RV owner now since 2003, and full time since 2011. My winters are spent in ski country out west. I have experienced conditions as cold as -35F for several mornings in a row. I have had furnaces fail on -23F nights! You learn and you adapt. I have had many interactions with owners of all types of RV’s from motorhomes to trailers, and from that I developed a perspective on the industry and the various manufacturers campers and how they’re made.

Prior to getting into the industry as a consultant/salesman, I realized that most trailers are built poorly and do not last. As an “insider”, my opinion was reinforced as I engaged in ongoing discussions with management and service personnel. Few companies stand out from this “sea of mediocrity” and Outdoors RV is among the best I’ve found.

After establishing my personal needs – a 5th wheel that did not exceed 35 (real) feet, did have “dual opposing slides”, a large fridge, microwave/convection oven, a well designed bedroom and ABOVE ALL was constructed and insulated well, the pack of competitors for my hard earned bucks became fairly small. I was fortunate to be aligned with a dealer who offered Outdoors RV trailers so I had the opportunity to learn more about them AND see how they held up over time as I’m now completing my 3rd year in the business.

Don’t get me wrong, there ARE worthy competitors – but for the money, design, quality, engineering and features, Outdoors RV deserves a VERY close look if you’re in the market for a new travel trailer or 5th wheel. Feel free to reach out to me if you have questions or just want to talk RV’ing. There is space provided below to post – I answer ALL.

In closing… I’m often asked what RV equipment (water & sewer hoses & accessories; electric; winter specific) I use. Click the image below to see my “best picks” in all these areas and more.

This entire post focused upon the EXTERIOR of my camper. Want to see my review of the campers INTERIOR?? Click HERE.

best rv accessories
Click the image to see my recommendations for important RV Accessories

IMPORTANT UPDATE: This model which has proven to be AMAZING for my needs nearly 2 years into owning it is NO LONGER PRODUCED by Outdoors RV. If you’re looking for similar quality – contact me for ideas regarding what’s made today that meets the same standards. (

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96 thoughts on “My NEW, TRUE 4 Season (Outdoors RV) 5th Wheel – The Outside”

  1. To borrow a oft used word from Star Wars, it looks “impressive”. You really did your homework on this one. I’m also impressed with the practically what you purchased. Looks like you hit a sweet spot as far as quality and price. Congratulations!

  2. I really like the Outdoors RV trailers. Never heard of them until I started following you. I have owned a couple of trailers over the years and after looking at the Outdoors I was impressed. I live in south central Texas and do not have any dealers anywhere close.
    I have fell in love with the Grand Design trailers. I’m retiring in March and don’t have any plans on full timing it and don’t want to be camping in -20 degree. With that being said, I still envy you on being able to live anywhere. Congratulations on the new trailer and keep the videos coming.
    Thanks Michael
    My wife started her life long dream of blogging this past summer. If you have a minute sometime she would love for you to check it out. She hasn’t ventured into the youtube world yet, even though I keep telling her to jump in.

    • Michael,

      Your wifes blog looks great. Tell her to keep it up, and yes, videos will expand her reach (and rankings).

      As for Outdoors RV, you’re right, there’s no dealers near you (I’ve had people travel from Georgia & NY to buy from me in Wyoming.) As to Grand Design, there are a number of areas where they fall short of the Outdoors RV. When you’re ready, contact me and we can have a more extensive discussion regarding the differences and explore your options.


  3. Congratulations Alan! So far it’s a beautiful thing! I wondered about the skirting, having never seen that before. Makes a lot of sense to keep that cold wind from blowing underneath. Smart! I’m loving your adventure and look forward to my own. Cant’ wait to see the new vids.

    • Mary,

      Much more coming and for anyone staying for any length of time in the cold, skirting is a must! I’ve used it before, but this is a FAR more elegant (and time saving) solution. I’ve been doing some looking for you, the one thing I’m finding is in the 29-5, free standing tables are NOT the norm, instead its dinettes (booths). Are you open to the booth concept to get the 29-5? Al

    • They decided to abandon the 30rds, THAT changed my mind! They built 12 in their first run and that was that. Now that I’m living in one, I can see why. The center island doesn’t really work the way they’ve designed this trailer. The living area is shorter than most 35 ft trailers (34′ 11″) – this is done to increase space in the bedroom and bathroom. Its only about 18 inches or so overall, but if you give to one area, you must take from another. I feel fine within the 30RLS living area, but if there was a center island, it would be awkward. Al And… yes, the skirting is solid, if you know anyone looking, I can get them a great price with the company that does the work.

  4. Hello Al,
    We just found your videos and can’t get enough. We regret not finding them before we spent our money. I don’t think our situation is all that different than many others. We searched for a quality product first, then found the floor plan that we liked the best, and then shopped nationwide for the best price. The quality isn’t what we were led to believe it is and we want to trade it in on something that truly is great quality and four season adaptable, that satisfies our wish list. We looked at, via the internet, the Northwood products and just now found the Outdoors website.
    Our wish list is simple, a bumper pull, two air conditioners, 16″ wheels, an outside kitchen, and lots of windows. Our garage door is exactly 12′ high and it has to fit into its garage.
    Our first question to you is, is there a difference is quality between the two companies’ products? Or is there another company we should look at, too?
    We realize that you could have chosen any RV for yourself, but you went with the Outdoors RV brand, and that you’re employed by a dealer that carries that brand. Do they also carry the Northwood brand?
    Mike and Gale

    • Thanks for reaching out. Yes, I’m VERY satisfied with my choice of an Outdoors RV trailer. Now, as I read your thoughts, you want to stay bumper pull? Any chance you would consider a move to a 5th wheel? (They pull better & have better storage & offer MUCH better bedroom configurations for full time travel.) Also – why an outdoor kitchen? (In my view, they take up space that can be used better in other ways. For me, I have a weber grill I use year-round.) All of the campers we are talking about will have an outside shower that can serve as a water source if you need water outside the camper.

      Ok, all that said, you’re good with either the Outdoors RV or Arctic Fox travel trailers – they’re both well made. Yes, the dealer I’m with only has Outdoors RV, but I also have access to Arctic Fox dealers for their product. Comparing the two – I’d give an edge to the Outdoors RV. Why? They do their own fabrication of all interiors and frankly they do a better job of it than Arctic Fox does. We have an AF dealer across town and every time I send someone over there, they come back to get the Outdoors RV, ‘nuf said?

      As to 2 a/c’s, that should be no problem. If you stay with a tt, and I do hear you on the height issue, what length are you looking for? Do you need/want bunks? (Those typically DO have outside kitchens.)

      If you order through me, I do have some outdoors RV inventory and can suggest specific models you can get deals on (we have ’17 left-overs), or I can work with you on a special order that is tailored to your wants & needs.


      • Hey Al,
        Thanks for getting back to me. We have an outside kitchen in our current Open Range and it’s so darn convient to stop for lunch anywhere we want. Also it keeps the inside much cleaner. That is a wish list item that we can be flexible on though.
        As far as size, the bigger-the better. We travel with two large dogs.
        In the AF we were looking at the 32A, and the Outdoors, the 270 RKS.
        Here’s the problem with the whole idea of trading in our OR, we’re not interested in taking a bath on it. The way we ordered it, it retailed at over $52K We paid right at about $42K for it.

        • What year/model is your open range? Have you considered selling it privately? As to the 270RKS, it is the BEST floor plan they have. Reason being the bed is “east-west” which is not typical of a travel trailer. This gives you a larger clothes closet. The living area is also spacious with dual opposing slides. At my store, we happen to have a 270RKS 2017 left-over that we would let go near cost. It is a “Timber Ridge”. Since its build, it has been relabeled by Outdoors RV as a Blackstone. Because ours is an early 2017, we can deal on it.

          • Our OR is a ’17 and there’s about five months left on the factory two-year warranty. I guess that means something to some people.
            We’d be interested in dealing on the unit that you have in stock, but we couldn’t until the OR is gone.
            I’ve never sold anything in my life, always traded in cars, truck etc.

          • If you share what model you have, I can give you an idea of what a dealer will value it at and what you could sell it for yourself. I certainly, once I know the model number can give you a price on a trade for our 270RKS Timber Ridge. (I assume that your ’17 is in excellent condition? No leaks, not smoked in, no damage?)

            Regarding the existing warranty – manufacturers warranties are typically not transferable to the new owner. So, if you sold / traded your camper today, the new owner would not have the benefit of the remainder of the OR warranty.

          • Hey Al,
            Obviously I didn’t explain about the brakes clearly. The service dept at my selling dealer determined that the issue with grease on the brakes was indeed a warranty issue.
            Our OR is a 310 BHS. The following list is how we had our OR built. In addition to these items, the stainless steel, kitchen package was added, including a residential fridge, screens over the furnace exhaust and the water heater exhaust, MAX AIR covers over both Fantastic Fans and the overhead vent in the bunkhouse.
            The fridge was just replaced under warranty, also the rear axle. By the time it’s for sale it’ll have brand new brakes (4), and tires. I’ll also be adding a “wet kit” to the suspension.

            Thanks for your help,
            Mike and Gale

            Four Seasons Protection Package

            Executive Package

            Aluminum Wheels and Tires


            These are our added options:

            Extreme Artic Package

            Wall Mounted Fireplace

            Upgraded Main A/C

            2nd A/C in Bedroom

            Fantastic Fan in Bathroom

            Fantastic Fan in Kitchen

            Party Room Package

            Slide Out Awning Covers (3)

            BBQ Grill


            Observation Camera

            Front Cap

            Rear Storage Tray

            Corian Sink Covers

            French Door to Bunk Room

            French Door to Bedroom

            Lock Arm Stabilizer Bars (4)

          • Ok, here’s what I can do on a trade: Your trailer plus 12900. gets you the new 2017 Timber Ridge 270RKS. You may have noted we have discounted that trailer on our website to 41900 from over 54000. To that 12900. you need to add our 199. documents fee plus any balance currently owed on your Open Range. The deal includes installing batteries on your new Timber Ridge, filling the propane tanks, and a complete & thorough walk-through and orientation.

            I looked up resale values in NADA on your Open Range. If you were to try to sell the trailer yourself, you’d probably get about an extra $5000. or so than you’re getting by trading it in. BUT – when you trade, you avoid the aggravation (and expense) of advertising and we assume all the risk on your current trailer.

            Let me know if these numbers work for you. Further, I need to know what you owe on your Open Range and who the lender is.

          • – take out the $60. advertisement, take LOTS of photos, if possible shoot a video & upload it. Also – be careful of LOTS of scammers, but you have to have a presence there; Facebook – find local classified ad groups. Between these 3, you’re covered. What are you thinking of asking for it? Out of curiosity, what did you pay for it? And… how much were you looking to get for it on a trade for the 270RKS?

          • Good Morning Al,

            We slept on it and took a good look at our finances. We used the inheritance we had just got and paid cash for our OR and have a clear TX title. The way we had it built, the MSRP was $54,278, we paid $42,000.
            I pray that I don’t embarrass myself or insult you, but we decided that the only we could make this transaction work is to offer up our OR and $5,000 cash. And we hope that we can make this work before roads are too difficult to make it out there and back.

            Mike and Gale

          • Mike & Gale,

            The offer I made you (12900) was very close to bottom dollar. At this time of year, my “money guy” is willing to break even on a deal, but not to lose money. After discussing with him, the best offer I can make you is $12,400. (with all details intact from my prior message). I know its more than you want to spend, but it DOES get you into a GREAT trailer that IS what you want. You’ll also step into a new warranty. If you opt to wait out the winter, I’d bet that his willingness to sell will increase, BUT the value on yours will continue to decline (remember – NADA updates every 8 weeks – and I believe their next update is Dec 1 (certainly Jan 1 at the latest) – and I can guarantee one thing… the value of your OR will decline after each update (as I stated previously for another year and a half or more to come.) Let me know if you wish to proceed – I can set a closing date as early as Wednesday of this week coming up. I checked the weather and it looks like Casper will have a warm week with no sign of icy/snowy weather.

          • ADDITIONAL THOUGHT – realize that since you have a 2017, NADA (the agency that rates the value of your trailer) updates their prices every 8 weeks. AND… being a 2017, you’re on a STEEP slope where you’ll see the value drop significantly every 8 weeks. This will go on for the next 18 – 24 months before the steep decline slows. Any dealer when making you an offer has that in mind – that is, if they don’t sell it fast, they’re at risk of getting clobbered as it devalues.

  5. Happy Thanksgiving Al,
    On another note, warranty. On our OR, I took it to our selling dealer 200 miles away when we got back from our 3-month vacation with several issues, some big and some small. Some three months later the factory only authorized about 2/3 of the repairs. I had to drag it home without functioning brakes because the wheel seals failed and the brake shoes were covered in grease. It’s on me to replace them. In all fairness, the dealer called to to tell me that they requested seven hours to do the brake job and only got authorization for two hours. I told him that I’d replace the brakes. I wasn’t told that they were covered in grease until I picked it up.
    So as far as I can tell, the warranty doesn’t mean much and I can do most everything myself anyway. I read forums for different manufacturers and it seams like my experience is pretty much the industry standard.
    When you moved into your beautiful Outdoors did you void your warranty? We have no plans to do that, just curious because that, too seems to be the industry standard.
    Again, Happy Thanksgiving

    • Warranties and what they mean vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Outdoors RV is about as good as they get for standing behind their products. The problem however with brakes/seals is the dealer/service center has to determine whether its product failure or something that happened in the course of traveling. I would not presume to step in the middle of that! As to living full time in the trailer, NO it does not void the warranty with ORV.

  6. Al,
    The Outdoors RV Glacier Peak F30RLS is on my short list, but I’m curious. I noted that you are pulling with a Ford F-250. Is this enough truck or would one be better off with an F350 SRW?

    • I beefed up my F250 by adding air bags. With that, no sag and its fine. The dry weight on my (titanium) 30RLS is 12,400 pounds. Out of curiosity, what other campers are you considering? Also, what state are you located in? Al

  7. Because I want a true 4-season 5th wheel, I am also looking at the Arctic Fox 29-5T. Based on your review and a few others I have been able to gleen off of the inter web, it seems that the GP is built better and not at a huge price difference.

    Born and raised in West Virginia. Am recently retired and putting house on the market Jan 2nd.

    • I too looked at the Arctic Fox 29-5. If you’re willing to get a new trailer, the Glacier Peak 30RLS has 2 slides in the living area (dual opposing slides). To me this made the 29-5 a “non-starter” once the Glacier Peak 30RLS became available. Also, the GP has a larger microwave/convection oven & I believe a larger fridge (I know mine is 12 cu ft.) Since you’re in W Va, I can get you a 30RLS through a dealer in Casper, Wyoming when you’re ready. If you want to special order one, I can go over available options and then get it priced up for you. Allow time if you plan to order one as they have a build schedule and it can often take months to take delivery of a custom trailer.

  8. Excellent website Al,
    Your new 5th wheel is impressive. Would you comment on the Lance 4 seasons travel trailers? I’m thinking about purchasing either the 1685 or the 1995 for myself and my yellow lab. Merry Christmas and thank you.

    • Lance has a good reputation. I have not checked them out extensively myself. A 1995 would be a 22 year old camper – that is very AGED in the camper world. I hope you’re quite capable of executing repairs WHEN needed on a camper like that. If you can afford newer, go newer. Al

  9. Colleen….Lance Travel Trailers are very well made and many compare them to Airstreams! The 1995 model is very popular…I would suggest going to the Lance Owners Website and doing some research as there are tons of very informative owners there…and very honest as to their ups and downs with their trailers/campers.

    When it comes to 5th Wheels I would have to agree with Allen here…I think the Outdoor RV’s are extremely well made. I’ve spoke with owners from the cold northern states to the hot southern states and the outdoor RV insulation is performing excellent in both climates.

    For Allen…I am curious about your thoughts regarding tow vehicles for a F28RKS. I have a Lance 2185 Travel Trailer and now that Outdoor RV is making these with the levelers we are very interested but will require some horse trading both in TV and TT of course. I’m considering a 2017 F-250 diesel crew cab.

    • Shepherd,

      The 28RKS (I assume you are referring to the 5th wheel model) requires a 3/4 ton truck, preferably a diesel. The Ford would be my choice. As to a trade, I would need to know the year/make/model of each rig you want to trade and monies owed on each to work up a price on a 28RKS Glacier Peak for you. Please contact me privately at and let me know you’ve emailed me by posting a reply here to say something like ‘message sent’. Al

    • Could you please point me to a post that could speak to an orv doing well in the southern heat? I’ve searched google 10 ways to Sunday , and haven’t been able to come with a single person with comments on how they perform in the extreme heat.

      • Tim,

        Please read the reply I just posted to “J” regarding camping in hot weather. The Glacier Peak does not come with a 2nd a/c which you will need – but – it DOES come pre-wired for a bedroom a/c. Any dealer can easily add a bedroom a/c. Now – as to an existing post, beyond what I shared with “J” below, I can’t manufacture a post that no one else has created. Remember, these are primarily sold in the Pacific NW, they’re designed for cold weather camping – I’m certain that owners take them to hot places too, but (apparently) to date, none have shared their (I’m sure good) experiences while camping in the heat. Al

    • Tim, I’m with Stalkups RV in Casper Wy. Please refer to my prior message to email me privately to work up some pricing if you’re interested. In the winter, I teach skiing and am just coming off a VERY busy period around the holidays. Al

  10. I want you to come to n down here to Texas in August. Super interested to know if by 4 seasons, you mean 3.

    I have a 30 amp right here on my property.

    • J,

      I spent a month in the Corinth/Denton area in August 2012. I’m VERY aware of how hot / oppressive it is. Now as to the Glacier Peak in those conditions and your situation: It IS a 4 season camper. The same insulation that keeps me separated from -16F outside is going to keep the camper cooler in the summer 110F heat. I have personally experienced this effect in Casper on our RV sales lot. Know this: It gets HOT in casper too! July temperatures are often 95 – 100 in the afternoon. When I walk into a Glacier Peak it is ALWAYS 10 – 15F cooler than any other camper on our lot. (These are campers that are sitting dormant on our lot – they have no electricity and no a/c is running.

      Now – you have an issue. For almost any camper (of any size over 30ft), you’re going to need 2 a/c units installed and that requires 50A service. So, yes, the Glacier Peak would be a great choice. But… you should upgrade your electric service for best results.


      • No doubt I will, just waiting on my electrician. I’m down to the purchase of one of two 5th wheels.

        The ORV or a Forest River Cedar Creek Hathaway 34rl2.

        It’s unfortunate that one simply doesn’t see many ORV’s down this way, and it’s hard to find accounts from real owners in the south. There are no dealers anywhere nearby. For our area, they are hard to buy.. and hard to decide to take the risk on.

        And not just the heat, but in full sun heat… Sometimes you get stuck right in the full sun, and it can be killer hot inside your rv. you start blocking off windows with silver bubble wrap…. but who wants to live in a cave?

        • J,

          Forgive my having a STRONG view but the FR Cedar Creek when compared to a ORV is like comparing a Ford Pinto to a fine tuned Euro sports car. FACT: Forest River products are INFERIOR – period. Of this there is no debate. ALL OF THEM. The corporation and all of its subsidiaries like Cedar Creek are a BIG part of the problem in the RV industry today. They use poor quality materials, shoddy workmanship and when things break, they do their best to DODGE warranty claims (ask ANY service writer in the RV industry) and take FOREVER to ship parts. The forest river label is best looked upon as a WARNING label. Sorry to be so direct, but there is NO comparison between Cedar Creek and ORV.

          As to having to travel, I’ve had folks travel from NY, Ga, and FL to my store in Wyoming to get a ORV. Why? They recognize quality when they see it. All I can do J is offer my testimonial as an OWNER and having sold MANY of these over the past 3 years. Its quite clear to me as I stated in a prior message that any trailer that can keep -16F cold out of the trailer will do just as well with 110F heat.

          Facts speak for themselves – 2″ thick solid foam walls (including the slide walls and ceiling); thermo-pane windows (NO NEED TO CREATE A CAVE); triple insulation above and below you – and a heeled truss roof (FAR better separation between the roof and interior than is seen in almost any other camper). As I sit here its 20F outside, I have not heard the furnace for nearly an hour and the temperature is holding near 65F.

          If you decide you want one and want me to quote you on a trailer, let me know. I’m here to advise, but I can also sell the ORV product.

          • Who does my warranty work down here? I have a fabulous, well known independent that’s worked on my past two RVs. I’d prefer to use the for any work.

            Can you put a generator in the orv?

          • For that matter, I have a short list of specific questions…

            1) Does the small couch in the 30RLS pull out into a bed? (have a child)
            2) can you reach the fridge with the slides closed?
            3) Is the second A/C ducted or is it only direct dump into the bedroom?
            4) What size is the second A/C?
            5) What is the CCC of your unit as configured?
            6) Do these windows just tilt out to open?

            For some reason, on this page, a lot of the photos you have posted have a description of like.. the underbelly, but the photo itself is of the desert floor.

  11. Hi Al
    Thanx for the helpful info.
    I am in BC Canada and the prices here are at least double what you mention in your post which leads to my question:
    Is it possible/worthwhile to buy a 5th wheel from you and bring it home to BC ?
    If so what is involved and approximately what would the fees, taxes etc total?

    • Yes, you can buy here and take it to BC – however, I believe Canada requires some kind of canadian wiring certification and they will not sell those rigs to us here in the states. If you were to buy here, it would be on you to gain canadian certification (call the factory if you wish to learn more about this). We would provide you with all paperwork to cross the border. We do not charge sales tax. You would simply declare the value upon crossing the border and owe your taxes to your province and federal government (gst, hst) when you get home. We can fix a price on what we have – right now I have a 30RLS in stock at the store. I believe it is not titanium. Al

  12. Hi Al
    Thanx for the quick reply. On further exploration I have discovered a dealer nearby. By comparison ball park price of $95k here. Seen some American ads for around $70k. ( Is that comparable to where you work?) If so the currency exchange plus border tax plus the trip there and back might mean not worth it.
    The nearby dealers Titanium unit does not include generator or AC#2 as you mentioned . Seems odd not to include these items as they seem like essentials to me. Like selling incomplete rigs.
    Their website is not very clear ( probably to encourage a talk with a salesperson) and I wonder what is the difference between a Titanium and a Mountain model?
    Also the difference tween 30RLS AND 30KLS?
    Thanx for letting me pick your brain a little more. You’ve certainly got me sold on the Glacier Peak but 38C below in Manitoba right now. Wonder how the GP would handle that?
    Re your thoughts on furnaces- Lots recommend a portable propane heater saying the furnace fan will drain your batteries and on shore power use electric heaters to avoid moisture. You seem to imply that the rv furnace is rather flimsy so I would use it little as possible to try and make it last longer. plus with propane heat creating moisture wouldn’t that apply to the furnace as well?

    • Ok, several issues here in your letter

      1) My price will be VERY competitive. What I can sell it for specifically depends upon the options you choose. Further, I’m not seeing the Canadian wiring listed anywhere at the moment – its possible that issue no longer exists, I will look into it for you. I can tell you that even with the currency conversion, we can save you several thousand dollars.

      2) No 2nd A/C and no gen is provided with any option. Why? The rig is wired for A/C in the bedroom and you can have a dealer add it easily. As to the gen – the new generators are smaller, more efficient, and quieter. You can easily transport them in your storage bays and set them outside the rig to run. The days of wiring in a big, heavy, loud Onan are coming to an end.

      3) 30RLS vs 30RKS (the only 2 options) – rear living vs. rear kitchen (detailed in their latest brochures on their site – find the glacier peak page on their site, look for the brochure link

      4) -38C – it will handle that as well or BETTER than virtually anything else. You’ll need to review my latest post (to be posted sometime today on my site).

      5) furnaces – YES – run your furnace! No, moisture in the GP is NOT an issue. Space heaters only serve to heat the interior, not the underbelly – and at such cold temperatures, you NEED to avoid a freezeup.


    • Tim,

      Just learned that the ORV factory is not likely to build ANY MORE Glacier Peak 5th wheels until AUTUMN. That means what we have in stock is what we have to sell. I can take an order but they WILL NOT build one until they schedule a full “run” of that model. Currently in Glacier Peak, I have a 30RLS, 30RKS (titanium) and a 26RKS. That’s all I’m likely to have until Autumn!!

      Now regarding Canada, there are certain endorsements & a wiring difference & a small plumbing change that are made on models going to Canada. It is up to you to check with your vehicle registration authorities & the border patrol authorities as to what happens if you bring a trailer across to Canada that does not have these endorsements & changes. We as an American dealer can not order a Canadian modified trailer as per the factories policy.


  13. Hi Al,

    I am delighted to have found your website. I look forward to purchasing a GP from you. Here are a few of my questions:

    What is the difference between a Travel Trailer and a Fifth Wheel besides the hitch setup?
    Height, storage area, ground clearance? Do travel trailers have slides? Also, could you go back and forth inside comfortably with the slides kept *in*?

    Thank you for all of your informational videos and your blog.

    I look forward to doing business with you in the future.

    • Jackie,

      I’m going to post here to help others see answers to your questions as well…

      Here are a few of my questions:

      What is the difference between a Travel Trailer and a Fifth Wheel besides the hitch setup?

      travel trailers do not pull as well as a 5th wheel. Simply put, having a hitch over your rear axle in the bed of a pickup truck creates a more stable towing situation than when the hitch is on your bumper. On windy days, its a travel trailer that has to pull over well before a 5th wheel in tow has to pull over.

      Height, storage area, ground clearance?

      About 13 ft 3 in for a 5th wheel to just under 11 ft for a travel trailer; storage area in a 5th wheel is SIGNIFICANTLY better – the 5th wheel has a LARGE storage bay under the bedroom/bathroom complex. Ground clearance is about the same. AND – the Outdoors RV have shocks which further protects the trailer when traveling ‘off road’

      Do travel trailers have slides?

      Most do, yes. In fact one thing I look for (especially for full time travelers) is “dual opposing slides” in the living area. This opens the living area quite a bit. Also – a slide in the bedroom (again for full timers) is vital, and if the bed is “in the slide” (an east-west bed like my camper has), you get your closet in the front cap – this gives you plenty of space for clothes & storage inside.

      Also, could you go back and forth inside comfortably with the slides kept *in*?

      Typically, no. In some models, you can move about somewhat, but the slides are designed to be slid out to move about. That said, even when you’re traveling and you stop for a lunch break – you can slide the slides on battery power and it only takes a minute or so. Just pick a spot with about 3 ft on each side of your camper to slide them out.

      Thank you for all of your informational videos and your blog.

      My pleasure. I should let you know that Outdoors RV is dedicating their production lines for the spring/summer to building travel trailers. That means the Glacier Peak 5th wheels that I currently have is ALL I will have until Autumn 2018! (I got this news from the factory rep just yesterday.) At this time, the dealer I work with has 1 26RKS (mountain), 1 30RKS (titanium) and 1 30RLS (mountain) in stock. All are 2018 models. Once these sell, I do not expect to see more Glacier Peaks until Sept or Oct at the earliest.

      By the way, I plan on using my Glacier Peak (non-titanium version)

      in the desert Southwest.

      A great place to travel with it. Depending upon my future plans, I may be in that region more than I have been in the recent past.

      All the best,

  14. Was interested in the F26RLS but see it has been discontinued. Was wondering why, really liked the floor plan. Could it have been because of the large slideout with the weight of dinette and sofa on it. I have found one on dealer lot thats equipped the way i like, but now second guessing.

    • I do not know specifically why the 26RLS is no longer offered. Sometimes a company discontinues a model simply because it was not selling well. Now… consider this – if you’re going to spend some significant time in your next 5th wheel, I’d encourage you to consider the 30RLS (or 30RKS) as these are full profile rigs and have much more living and storage space. Alternately, the 28rls will be built later this year. What state do you live in and how much time do you plan to spend in your next 5th wheel?

      • We are in Alaska. Wanting to spend 3~4 months of winter down south. (I’m retired). Plan to leave it in storage around Seattle area during the summer. Dont want anything too large as getting into State and Fed parks out West could be a hassle if not impossible.

        • If you look at the mid-profiles (26 and 28 models), you’ll see a MUCH smaller clothes closet in the bedroom, smaller fridge, smaller microwave (and no convection oven option), and overall less storage than the 30 (full profile) models. Now as to length – the 26 is a true 30 ft camper (bumper to hitch), the 28 is 34ft and the 30’s are 34 to 35 ft. By calling the full profile models a “30”, you WILL gain access to parks with a 30 ft limit (and of course check to insure that a true 33ft 9inch or 34 ft 11 inch camper can fit in their sites (which they most likely can.) I went into the 30RLS for this reason AND to gain the extra storage space (the bedroom/bathroom in the 30RLS/30RKS models is truly exceptional) – I recently did a post highlighting the inside so you can see the features there. If you want me to quote you on any of their models, I have a 26RKS, 30RLS and 30RKS in stock at this time and I know we can do special orders but I do not expect delivery on those orders until Autumn as that will be Outdoors RV’s next build of Glacier Peaks. Al

  15. Alan,
    Thanks for this blog and your comparison, i have been looking at and researching RV’s for over a year now trying to get a definitive brand /manufacturer and you’ve confirmed what my gut was telling me. I look forward to seeing these in person in Denver at the RV Show 2018. Denver is the closest dealership to me for OutdoorsRV product as I live in Kansas City MO. I’ve often wondered why this awesome RV is not sold from other dealers in the Midwest. I am somewhat apprehensive about a purchase so far from home in case something should need fixed. Can you give me any tips/pointers for long distance purchase, extended warranty info? Thanks again for your blog and all the information you provide. REALLY! Thank you!!!

    • Christine,

      Generally I recommend buying local BUT Outdoors RV is a CLEAR EXCEPTION to this rule. Here’s why: First, they limit their dealer base to the Western US (and Canada) because they can barely keep up with demand with their existing dealers. Opening more, farther east would simply push demand beyond their capacity to produce. As an example, if I take an order on a Glacier Peak (any of the 5th wheels TODAY, I won’t be able to supply the camper to the buyer until OCTOBER. (Currently I have 3 Glacier Peak 5th wheels in stock and when they’re gone, I’ll have no more until autumn). Now – as to buying from a distant dealer, I can tell you, the dealer I work for in Casper, Wyoming has done several sales to folks on the east coast. We always have the buyer plan to spend a few days in Casper to “shake down” their trailer and we do a VERY thorough walk-through and orientation (frankly we do far more to earn business from those at a distance than our competitors in the Denver metro area.) ALSO – the company is great about approving warranty work by dealers east of their dealer base. I’ve personally worked with their warranty guy and he’s easy to work with. Now as to extended warranties, whether you buy your trailer from me or not, I can get you an excellent deal on a “ESC” from a reputable firm that is very fair when it comes to paying claims. What is it you’re looking for and what is your timeline? Al

  16. Al, great site with lots of good info. I’m looking to get rid of my toy hauler (23′ bumper pull) and upgrade to a higher end fifth wheel such as the ORV or similar quality. Just don’t use the garage function enough to justify the cost/weight. Few questions for you:

    1. Length – I’ve heard there is a breakdown somewhere around 30′, with regard to towability, access to many places, and electrical service required.

    2. I’ve seen some other manufacturers’ units with the front living area. Does ORV offer this configuration? If not, is there a similar quality manufacturer who does?

    3. I read your comparison of the Augusta. Are there any other brands/lines out there you’d compare to the ORV? I know they may come at a higher cost, but I’m curious what else out there compares in terms of quality, durability, features, etc.

    Thanks in advance and thanks for all the info you’ve provided here!

    • If your camper is a “model 30” or lower number, you are treated as a 30 ft camper. This gets you past the gate at parks with such restrictions. As far as 34 or 35 ft vs. 30 ft, yes, you’re limiting yourself somewhat, but if you plan to spend any significant time in the camper, I see 30 ft as too small.

      Front living is not currently offered by ORV. You sacrifice storage space in the main bay under what would be the living room. There is no quality mfr who does front living in a 35 ft or smaller trailer.

      I would not compare Augusta to ORV – I know my post compares the two, but there really is no comparison. The ORV is head and shoulders above it. No other company at ANY cost really compares. I state this strongly as for example, New Horizons DOES make a better camper – but do you want to pay around $200,000. and then need a F550 or freightliner to pull it? As to others, no, Vilano falls short, Grand Design does not hold a candle, Mobile Suites DRV does not make a trailer under 38 ft any longer, all the other Thor and Forest River (crap) does not hold a candle to it, and Arctic Fox (their cousin) does not make a true competitor to the 30RKS and 30RLS Outdoors RV. The 29-5 made by AF has only 1 slide in the living area – that to me is a non-starter. I know I’m coming across strong on this, but truly there is NO other company doing what Outdoors RV is – even for double the money. If you do want one – let me know. They’re going to be hard to get for the next several months. Al

  17. Hi Al, My wife and I are looking at a 2017 30RLS. I was about to go with it until I noticed the somewhat low CCC of 2400 lbs. I was planning on adding a full solar system and by the time I add water, propane and assorted essentials I would be down to approximately 1500 lbs for cargo. Do you think that would be sufficient? it would be just the two of us for the most part. Or should we be looking at the 28RLS, having 3900+ lbs. CCC? We could possibly be living in it full time for a few months or longer.

    • Your weight will likely be ok, however I want you to consider a few things:
      1) the 2017 30RLS is the FIRST BUILD of this full profile 5th wheel – I would recommend avoiding ANY first build of any 5w! Also – if this is on a dealers lot, it has been sitting there for well over a year. Those 2017’s hit the dealers lots in Feb 2017.
      2) Do not buy a 28RLS if you plan to spend any significant amount of time in it. Why? The bed is North-South and that leaves the wardrobe in the slide – it is MUCH smaller than the 30RLS bedroom wardrobe. Further, its a mid-profile – smaller fridge, small microwave and no convection.

      Solution? I have a 30RLS in Mountain in a 2018 model. I could make you an offer on it – but it won’t be as deeply discounted as a 2017 is.

      PS – I still LOVE my 30RLS

  18. Hi Al, Currently looking for a small fifth wheel to camp here in Oregon. Of course there are no Glacier Peaks around as mentioned they won’t be around til Autumn. We have looked at the fox mountain which seems comparable. What is your opinion on those. I like the ORV better from the one I walked thru a few months ago. But don’t know how available they will be. We want a loveseat recliner which no one offers in these smaller models. Don’t care for the recliner chairs as they have to be pulled out so far from the wall to recline and without a double slide it takes up the whole space. I know we can post purchase one and replace the existing seating. We will most likely do that. We do mostly weekend camping so don’t need something we have to live in. When do you expect to have them there and if we wanted to order is it too late to do so since it is August ? Laura

    • First, the fox mountain does not compare to any glacier peak. The fox mountain is a low end product compared to arctic fox – which while arctic fox is built as well as glacier peak, it does not have as nice an interior. Right now I have a 30RLS and 30RKS Glacier Peak on my lot, due to various issues here, I do not know when I’ll see more glacier peaks (earliest December).

  19. I know that Outdoor RV will no longer be making the F 30RLS full profile RV. I have found one and am considering purchasing. There are very few out there. My question is…I know you have been in yours for a while and do you feel that it is still top quality for your lifestyle. Any advice would be appreciated.

    • Dawn, definitely! Now, in my own self interest, I have to point out that I work with a dealer in Casper, Wyoming and I have one on our lot that I can deal on. Where is the one you’re thinking of purchasing? Is it titanium or mountain? By the way – its not necessarily true that the F30RLS is discontinued. What ORV is doing is putting them aside to launch two new series of travel trailers and they may return to the 30RLS and 30RKS manufacturing in the future. Al

  20. Southern California is where we found some and the one we thought if purchasing is a mountain series. What is the difference? I called all round the country and must have missed Casper.

    • Dawn,

      The one I have available is also a mountain. Titanium is an upgraded package (much like “lariat” to “xlt” on ford trucks). Titanium adds about $10,000. to the price tag. I can probably save you on this trailer over a california dealer. For starters, they have to charge california sales tax unless they deliver it out of state (for a hefty delivery fee). The dealers I’ve worked with out there also charge large fees for dealer prep and such. Feel free to call me (561 676 1205) or email me at and we can discuss further. Al

  21. Hi Alan just bought 2018 250 RDS black stone trailer. I was getting saw dust coming from the max air fans, so l pulled the bottom cover down to clean up the saw dust. To my surprise I found the pink insulation was not installed correctly. Know insulation under or on top of the air conditioning duck work many gaps in the insulation,the reflected foil was falling down and I could see the under side of my roof. I haved found out that the reflected foil is friction fitted between the rafters only. Outdoors rv have been great to work with, they are taking of my roof off and re-insulating my trailer. The reason I am telling you this ,so you can check your insulation in your new 5th wheel. I hope your 5th wheel Is insulated right. Again I say that outdoors rv are standing be hind their product and fixing my trailer.

    • Sounds like you had a technician involved in building your camper who took a shortcut or made a mistake. It can happen anytime/anywhere that humans are involved in the process of building something! I’m glad to see ORV made it right. In my case, I appreciate your concern, however seeing how my 5er performed last winter – no leaks and no evidence of spots with poor insulation, I doubt mine has the same issue (or many trailers of theirs) as yours. Its likely an isolated issue affecting you or just a few trailers as again, it comes down to human error. Enjoy your travels. Al

  22. I have kept up on the ORVs and see their value. We like the insulation and the build.

    However, still curious about why they don’t offer washer/dryer hookups. You seem to follow the snow, but that is not everybody.

    I have come to the conclusion that ORV is a camper company from the great Northwest. They are not building for long termers. Many, many long termers (and full timers) are going to value creature conveniences as much as a great suspension. And many, many, many would appreciate good insulation, but avoid the snow.

    Looking for a homey ORV is like looking for a light weight DRV, it seems. 🙂

    I would really like to see a fiberglass roof. Western Oregon has as much rain as other places have snow. Whenever branches scrape the roof, I would like to know it is fiberglass.

    • You raise some interesting points. The ideal buyer for an ORV trailer is one who likes to go to more remote places, including rough roads that lead to the best campsites & campgrounds. Arctic Fox trailers are similar but have a few more “creature comforts” especially in the 32-5 and 35 models. They are also well insulated and have shocks to protect your trailer.

      As to fiberglass roof – very few campers have this – and for those that do, I’m not aware of any with slideouts. Most, including ORV and Arctic Fox use rubber (edpm) – it is tried & true and if cared for, will last many trouble free years.

      As to a washer/dryer – I’m not a fan of them, though the Arctic Fox 32-5 and larger models DO have w/d hookups. Why am I not a fan? Simple – they’re expensive, take up space that can otherwise be used for “stuff”, add weight, and cause water to run in more places in your camper – and the more places water is running, the more issues you may encounter. But, if you have $2500. burning a hole in your pocket, do as you wish. I’ve never found a laundramat hard to find or inconvenient, and as an adult, I don’t do laundry more than 3-4x/month. I can see where a young family would definitely need a w/d as kids clothes definitely need to be laundered more often.

      Lastly, you mention a “homey ORV” and a “lightweight drv” – things are because of the way they are – ORV makes a highly functional trailer, you sound like you may appreciate an Arctic Fox 32-5 – which is still not absurdly long. DRV’s are heavy because of their type of construction. Of course, AF and ORV are nearly as heavy for their length. Mine is 12400 dry and is 34’11”, a drv will be about 41′ and weigh at least 16,000 pounds.


  23. I would also like to see a Lithium/Solar prewire. Something Lithium drop in ready. An ORV would be great, with all that insulation in the Arizona sun with six or eight hundred amp hours of battery.

    We would want the resilience to be able to brave the heat, as well as the cold.

    • The roof is prewired for 2 or 3 solar panels – i believe up to 500 watts. For the kind of use you intend, I would encourage you to meet with a solar panel expert after you get the camper and be prepared to drop some serious money into prepping it for solar and installing it. Don’t expect ANY manufacturer to prewire more than ORV and AF do already as they won’t invest hundreds of extra dollars in wiring unless there is a significant demand for it – and to my knowledge and from my experience, most solar users are quite happy with 200 – 500 watts. In my case, I use 200w of portable panels which is all I’ll ever require.

      Lastly, if you want a truly custom camper, get a new horizons – you’ll have a camper that will cost your $150,000+ and require a F450 or F550 or freightliner to pull it – but – you’ll get what you’re looking for. Remember, ORV and AF make campers (5th wheels) that sell for well UNDER $100,000. and I see no sign of them reaching farther up the ladder to the truly few folks that want to spend much more than they’re already being asked to.

      • A New Horizons at that price might actually be cheaper (in the long run) than the cheapo brands that are mentioned in your blog: since people buy so many of those cheaper brands!

        I have always disliked laundromats my whole life. If the leak problem is bad for washer/dryers it would only be worse for retrofits. If ORV ran the PEX I doubt it leak any more than a kitchen sink.

        The difficulty is similar for upgraded electric. It is hard to pull wires in any RV.

        I agree that it is mostly DRVs and up have the fiberglass roofing. I still think it would be a good idea the “other side” of the Cascades where it rains from now till summer.

        RV buying is frustrating because companies build to their average customer –

        My DW wants the washer. I would like to be able to run one AC with a hybrid inverter (a small generator and hefty batteries, prob. Lithiums that you could run down almost all the way). The Lithium Iron Phosphates seem safe and flexible.

        I would also like to see a Zero Carpet decor!

        Just like it seems you are in the deep cold in the winter, we may be in the hot heat in the summer. And like I implied, it the the rainy, rain in the wet season.

        Off grid living is easier with real flexibility.

        • Based upon your wants & needs, I would suggest you contact New Horizons and get your wallet ready. I believe you’ll only be happy with a custom built camper and they’re the only one I know of.

  24. I wanted to compliment you on your videos on the 12 volt system on an RV. You really caused me to look into the matter. The saga of your WFCO converter was really a brilliant piece of camper journalism.

    I love the ORV for its insulation bones. Additionally, I want a true 21st century electrical system. If the insulation, roof, laminated slide floors are the bones, then the electrical system is the nervous system of a camper.

    Looking back at your early videos (in your old camper) you talk about buying very good AGM glassmat batteries so you could boondock. You seem to say that you ended up mostly rving in RV parks. Your more recent videos where you are in the deep cold have you hooked up to a big propane tank. That is great. And the ORV seems to have served you well in the deep cold.

    But for me, I also want independent electric. There is a couple that lives in a converted bus – pretty big youtubers. They have a very small generator, solar, lithium and great converter/inverter set up. With the hybrid inverter they can draw power BOTH from the Lithium AND the small (read quiet!) generator and run one of two ACs in the summer.

    Since my wife and I have family in the South, where it is hot AND MUGGY, we want the option to run the A/C everyday.

    Shoot. I remember when we used to live in Portland. We would run the A/C there even when it was not too hot in the house, because of that Portland humidity.

    Thanks so much for all your videos.


  25. Hope your Fifth Wheel repair went well.

    Anyway from what I have said above, I think we need closer to an all electric rig. I see Arctic Fox’s with more common generators in them. Switching between genset and solar would be the best energy source for us. Although I think we might still want a propane fridge.

    Any camper I would prob. change the charger converter right away if it did not charge Lithium according to spec. I can manage that.

    I think you said the ORVs commonly came with 500 watt solar. That could do for a while….

    I still think the ORVs look better for BLM land and roads (do they call it the x4 package). And no doubt the cold, although I am not sure about the baggage compartment insulation on the ORVs. How is your Glacier Peak insulated in the basement between the compartment and bedroom floor?

    I spent one winter in upstate New York. We had to drive across the frozen lake and shovel the snow off the cabins.

    The one great thing about 40 below winters is that it is the same centigrade as Fahrenheit!!

    • I don’t know what an “all electric rig” is – and I would not want one. As I noted in my message a moment ago, you NEED to use your furnace in cold weather – your PROPANE furnace. As to generators, I’d go with an after market generator that sits outside – the Predator (for about $400.) provides 2000 watts (get it at harbor freight) and can be paralled to a 2nd generator to drive an a/c (NOT 2), you’ll need a bigger gen for two, but its still cheaper/and more space efficient to get 2 predators than 1 Onan (which can be wired to have a switch inside to start it (an unneccesary luxury if you ask me). Bottom line – the ORV 5th wheels offer an OUTSTANDING value as do the Arctic Fox. When you’re ready, I can negotiate a great price on either for you (or anything else for that matter.)

  26. It seems like having 2 A/Cs and at least one with the heat pump feature, as well as an electric fireplace is good in settings where electric power is more available than propane. Like when you have 50 amp power as part of your hookups.

    • From my experience, a/c w/ heat pump is only found in toy haulers in the garage; otherwise, your furnace provides the necessary heat AND does it from below so (in good trailers) it heats the underbelly area as well. In the Glacier Peak (and most good trailers), the underbelly is fully sealed (triple layers of insulation) and heated and mine also has 12v heating pad on the fresh water tank. Whenever temperatures are below 32F, you WANT/NEED the furnace to run to keep the underbelly from freezing up (well, the plumbing and fresh water tank). You only need 2 a/c’s for cooling if you’re in a larger trailer AND it gets HOT. In Casper, even on 95F days in July, with 1 a/c, my camper never got much over 80F. Now, if you’re in a humid area, that is uncomfortable, so, yes 2 a/c’s and 50A service is important. Most (if not all) of the glacier peak’s come with 50A and are pre-wired to the bedroom vent for a 2nd a/c to be dropped in by the dealer. An electric fireplace (by the way) is nothing more than a $20. 1500 watt portable heater (with a lightshow).

  27. Hi Al,

    First off, congrats and thank you for this incredibly professional and informative site. I think I’ve read just about all of your stuff in the past week or so since I discovered it…well done!

    I am retiring from Germany next month and flying with my wife to Denver on 8 December….just in time to spend four days at the annual Denver RV show 9-12 Jan. I’ve been doing research on Airstream trailers and fifth wheel toy haulers for the last six years as our goal was to return to CONUS and spend a year on the road before building a house in the Denver area in 2020. Our #1 priority is quality which is why I was looking at Airstreams initially. I switched to toy haulers because we don’t think a 30 Airstream will be big enough for us as we may also live in it while building our new house…up to two years total. Our trip plans include Canada and Alaska so build quality and insulation are critical as well.

    Will you be at the Denver show? If not, what inventory do you expect to be on hand in January as I can easily make a trip up to Casper.

    I agree with your thoughts on dual opposing slides. We also have annual National Parks passes so we’ll need a rig of accessible length.

    My wife is dead set against a dually and prefers gas over diesel. I’m with her on the dually but I like the extra torque, fuel mileage and engine brake features that the oil burners offer. Interested in the company’s recommendations for a 35 foot 5-er?

    • Brian,

      Thanks for your kind words and sharing your thoughts. First thought: a 5th wheel is THE way to go – not a travel trailer. Now that said, with the thought in mind to travel AND gain access to the best campgrounds and to get to Ak and Canada, your choice of a 35 ft. trailer is a wise one. Before I go any further – I’m NOT going to recommend a toy hauler at all. Reason? Most are 38 ft OR LONGER (bumper to hitch) AND very few are well insulated – especially in the garage. So, this leaves us with a 35 ft 5th wheel NON-toy hauler. My recommendation (since Outdoors RV has stopped building my trailer for now) is the next best thing – Arctic Fox 29-5 which comes in 2 flavors – rear kitchen & rear living. It is WELL BUILT and WELL INSULATED.

      Next thought: If you only plan to spend a year in it, why not buy a used one? All trailers depreciate rapidly and 2-3 year old trailers can be had for far less than a new one – and – they’re often very lightly used. I do have a concierge buying service ( and would be glad to work with you to find one. For the winter, I will be stationed in Jackson, Wyoming – skiing most days (tough life, eh?), but I can do my work entirely online and on the phone. My store in casper is in transition, but we’re not limited to what they have, I can work with you on a nationwide search for the Arctic Fox 29-5 and will then negotiate for it for you to get the best price after insuring its in good condition. Al

  28. Thanks Al, I actually prefer used and have been searching many of the online RV sites for a rig in the 35 foot range. Understand your thoughts on the toy hauler and will keep that in mind. I mistakenly said we fly in Dec but it’s January so I’ll look you up when we get there. We have Epic Ski passes for the Vail region and would like to park the rig somewhere up there so we can enjoy the bunny slopes!!

    • When it comes to ‘bunny slopes’ – I work in Jackson as a ski instructor… so if you want, I’ll help you move beyond those bunny slopes!

      Reflecting upon your wants/needs – take a look at the Arctic Fox 32-5 as well – it has the dual opposing slides and is only slightly longer than the 35 ft “ideal”. I believe its 36 ft long bumper to hitch; the 29-5 is 33-34 ft bumper to hitch.


  29. I just ran across your site and thank you for the great information!
    My want list includes a rear living – opposing slides as well. Definitely 35 ft to have full access to NP’s. And east/west bed.
    Some questions if you have time!:
    *Considering a fireplace for added warmth. Is this needed?
    *What is the oldest year Outdoor RV you’d consider purchasing that retains the benefits you’ve mentioned above?
    *Are there any other brands that you’d recommend or encourage me to stay away from?
    I will be full time within this year and do want to have the flexibility to see our world in all types of climate.

    • Martha, thanks for reaching out and your kind words. Now… fireplace – if you get it from the rv manufacturer it is about a $500-800. option that provides a cheesy light show and serves as a heater that works about the same as a $20. kmart or walmart electric heater, AND it takes away cabinet space that would otherwise be available. I’m living with the cheap electric heater, but with my new custom furniture (its a recent article on my site), I did allow room for a portable fireplace – in which case I’ll be wasting about $170 (instead of $500+) to get a cheesy light show!

      Outdoors RV is a unique case – the 2018 is the ONLY year I’d recommend, they only did 2 “runs” of these trailers before they stopped making them (dealers weren’t good at selling them – I believe its a dealer / floor salesman training issue.) That said, there ARE other viable alternatives for full timers since ORV has effectively pulled out of this part of the rv market. As to brands I recommend – Arctic Fox (29-5 or 32-5) and Jayco Pinnacle (I think its the 3210) – similar length, similar quality, in fact Arctic Fox is a northwood company as is ORV. With my concierge buying service, I can advise specifics and get you a great price and guide you through the purchase process – to learn more about that. As to other brands beyond what I’ve named – most are on the AVOID list, yeah, its THAT bad in this industry!

      Contact me if I can be of assistance or if you’re interested in my buying service.



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