In this issue, Trailblazer would like to introduce you to the Lopez family. In 2019, they decided the fulltime RV lifestyle was for them – all five of them to be exact! Read on to learn more about why they value the RV lifestyle. 

TB: How long have you been camping and RVing? Who introduced you to it? Tell us how it all began! 

ML: We started in March of 2019; we wanted to simplify life. We had a 10-acre farm, we were involved in our kids’ sports – hubby was a coach plus VP of the league – and we were already homeschooling plus running a business. The idea of scratching everything off and starting a new chapter sounded perfect. The thought of RVing was born right after my husband’s uncle came to visit us. He had just bought an RV to travel the country and once we got to talking more in depth with him, we knew this was something we definitely wanted to do. We wanted to explore the country but stay within the comforts of our home. 

TB: How did you first hear about Thousand Trails? 

ML: We actually went to a Thousand Trails park to reserve for a monthly stay and the receptionist mentioned that for the same cost we would be able to purchase the pass and camp free. Of course, we were very skeptical about it and asked the same question in many different ways: what is the catch? I’m glad there was no catch because this membership has saved us tons of money.

TB: What is one of your fondest camping memories?  How about one of your fondest TT memories? 

ML: We’ve shared so many amazing memories with so many families but if we have to choose one then we’d say caravanning this past winter. We spent months with the same families, traveling to the same parks. It was like having your closest friends and family over for a weekend BBQ that turned into five months long. We love Hidden Cove in Arley, Alabama. It has beautiful lake views and the kids enjoyed swimming in the lake almost every day.

TB: Any funny camping/RVing stories? 

ML: We’ve had so many rookie mistakes but the funniest would have to be the sewer hose. The boys are always in charge of all connections. Apparently this day, someone didn’t sleep enough and failed to close the black tank after disconnecting the hose. So, you can imagine what happened when we arrived to the next park and the cap comes off for the hose to connect. Slush everywhere. We laugh now but I can assure you, nobody was laughing that day. 

TB: What type of camper are you/what equipment do you use? What do you prefer and why? (ex: fifth wheel, RV, tent, cabins, etc.) 

ML: We pull a 44’ Sabre 38DBQ by Forest River fifth wheel with our Ford F350. We chose this camper because it has two full bedrooms and bathrooms. We loved the separation of space it provided for us with the kids plus we can tow it anywhere and feel at home.  

TB: Where have you gone that you wouldn’t have otherwise, if it hadn’t been for your Thousand Trails membership? 

ML: The Florida Keys! Hotel prices are expensive and being able to spend weeks/months in the Keys has been a huge blessing.

TB: What is your favorite part about the outdoor lifestyle? 

ML: We love everything about the outdoors. The beautiful and different sceneries, the fresh air, walking, fishing, kayaking, campfires, barbecuing, and swimming. But mostly, this lifestyle encourages you to come outside which allows you to meet so many people.  

TB: This is the question we will be finishing the feature with every issue.  We want to know when you knew you were the consummate camper, a true TrailBlazer. Can you finish this sentence? I knew I was a TrailBlazer when… 

ML: I knew I was a TrailBlazer when the thought of going back to a stationary life in a sticks and bricks home didn’t attract us at all. We crave the changes and the flexibility that we can pick up and go as we please. We feel happy with this lifestyle and have no plans in sight to ever go back.