On the road in your motorhome this winter
When you’ve spent thousands on your dream motorhome the last thing you want to have to do is leave it standing on your driveway for weeks on end during winter.
That’s why hordes of motorhomers spend the colder months out and about in their motorhomes still enjoying their hobby.
Many seek out the winter sunshine of places like Spain or Portugal or the ski slopes of Austria or France but others like to stay closer to home.
It divides opinion but some say that winter motorhoming is better than spending a summer in their ‘van.
This is because there aren’t the guaranteed holds-ups of the summer months like the long queues as people head for our most popular destinations. Bright and crisp mornings are perfect for walking and it’s unlikely that campsites (that are open all-year round) will be full.
So, whether you want to see in the New Year on a campsite in Scotland where there may be some package available for site, dinner and a New Year’s Eve party available, visit a Christmas market in Belgium or grab some winter sunshine in Portugal, your motorhome is still the perfect travelling companion.
It’s important that any motorhome novices ensure their vehicle is fit for purpose before embarking on a winter trip.
For example, fresh and waste water in externally mounted water tanks could freeze in sub-zero temperatures. Many water tanks are fitted under the floor and purpose-designed immersion heaters are available from motorhome accessory stockists or you could lag them with some sort of insulation to help prevent them from freezing.
Motorhoming in the snow?
Keeping the ‘van warm will help too but it’s worth asking your dealer for their advice before you set off on your winter adventure.
Other tips include using external blinds to reduce condensation, carrying plenty of anti-freeze and checking the local laws of any country you visit as you may be required to carry snow chains and high visibility jackets for example.
In case you have to park on wet and snow-covered grass, take a grip mat with you to solve any traction problems and use Propane gas and not Butane. To get the most out of winter, take your waterproofs and walking boots too – perfect companions for those chilly days.
And don’t forget to drain your motorhome down when you return home.
If you are planning a UK-based winter trip, here are details of four campsite locations that are open for business all year round:
- Snowdonia Park, Waunfawr, Caernarfon, Gwynedd, Wales. This is a small site with excellent views and adjacent to a steam railway. Convenient for walkers who wish to climb Mount Snowdon, or those intent on visiting Caernarfon. Food and Real-ale is just a short walk away. Telephone 01286 650409. Visit www.snowdonia-park.co.uk
- Brighouse Bay Holiday Park, Borgue Peninsula, Kirkcudbright, Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland. One of Britain’s finest environmental parks set in 1,200 exclusive acres, it is a haven for wildlife and has extensive woods, nature trails and glorious views. Telephone 01557 870267. Visit www.gillespie-leisure.co.uk
- Waterrow Touring Park, Wiveliscombe, Taunton, Somerset. This multi-award winning 13-acre beautifully landscaped, adults only site is akin to pitching in someone’s feature garden. All pitches are hardstandings with lovely views and a few are fully serviced. Telephone 01984 623464. Visit www.waterrowpark.co.uk
- Scotgate Holiday Park, Braithwaite, Keswick, Cumbria. Scotgate Holiday Park is probably one of the best and most popular north Lake District campsites and is nestled amongst the mountains of the Coledale Valley and the Newlands Valley in the quiet town of Braithwaite. It has everything you need for a comfortable stay. Telephone 01768 778343. Visit www.scotgateholidaypark.co.uk