After a couple months of working some crazy overtime and two months trying to sell the ’99 Bounder, we finally got a last minute chance to take the new rig on a short trip. I chose Canyon Point knowing it’s the closest, coolest and highest elevation improved campground only 110 miles from home. At 7700 foot elevation, it’s an awesome place during an Arizona summer.
I had a couple days between projects since one of them got pushed out a month so I took a Friday off. I looked up some pull through campsites that were first come, first serve since everything at work was tentative up until Thursday night before we left. We set off about 2:30 to get ahead of traffic hoping the best sites wouldn’t be taken. Heading north just as we passed the last traffic light out of town, a trucker came up on the left side flagging us down to let us know the Jeep had a flat tire on the rear driver side, we couldn’t even feel any drag!
I pulled over right away expecting to find a shredded tire and damaged rim. Luckily we still had about 15 pounds of pressure and the tire bead was intact. Even luckier, my six gallon pancake compressor still had 80 pounds of pressure and barely got us to 35 pounds on that rear tire! I was able to find a great spot down the highway to make a u-turn and head back to Fountain Hills knowing there was a discount tire there.
When we got there the tire was already low again so it must have just went about the time the trucker spotted us. Turns out it was a valve stem leaking fast only when the wheels were rolling. The tires were all six years old so it wasn’t wise to replace a stem (if they would have agreed to), we opted for a new set of tires. I’m definitely investing in a Tire Pressure Monitoring System for the RV and Toad since neither come with TPMS installed.
Amazingly they got the tires mounted, balanced and installed in about 45 minutes and we were back on the road before the mass crowd of campers began heading out of town. We got up to Canyon Point and the site I was hoping for most was still available. Over the weekend we got to know the new RV, took the Jeep out on the fire control roads in and around the town of Forest Lakes. Some storms rolled in with some showers, some hail and temps dropped from mid 70’s down to the low 60’s, I couldn’t have asked for better weather with 110-115 at home!
The RV did great but we ended up spotting a leak from under the sink cabinet so I’ll need to replace an elbow in the bottom of the cabinet feeding the sink faucet. I’ll have to remove a thin panel that’s stapled in and try not to damage it, I’ll probably do both hot and cold to play it safe.
Being a gas coach it struggled with the 7-9% grades on the way up, I had hopes it would do better than our old ’99 since I now have a higher torque/horsepower engine, five speed transmission and 1500 pounds higher tow capacity on this 2014. But all the new tech didn’t make a noticeable difference on the steep grades. Despite that first trip was awesome and I’m getting excited for more cross country trips!