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.

outdoors RV sealed underbelly
Outdoors RV Sealed Underbelly – Clean Propane Lines

Outdoors RV - Fully Sealed Underbelly
Glacier Peak – Fully Sealed Underbelly

Outdoors RV - The furnace is working to heat the enclosed underbelly
Outdoors RV – The furnace is working to heat the enclosed underbelly

Outdoors RV - clean design & engineering
Clean design & engineering

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.

A quick thought… without your health, where are you? I used this product to help me reduce my blood pressure significantly this summer. The research suggests, you can too. Yes, there IS research on arginine – and Arginine Infusion has one of the best formulations I’ve seen. Judge for yourself, click the image below…

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.

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

30 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
    P.S.
    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.
    http://www.lovetofrugal.com

    • 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.

      Al

  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

    • 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?
    Thanks,
    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.

      Al

      • 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

            RIVA

            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

            Ladder

            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.

          • RVtrader.com – take out the $60. advertisement, take LOTS of photos, if possible shoot a video & upload it. Also craigslist.org – 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

Leave a Comment