Camper trailer camping

Discussion in 'Snow Talk' started by StuckinQld, Jul 23, 2017.

  1. StuckinQld

    StuckinQld Active Member

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    So, my kids and I are kind of keen to go and spend our ski week camping this year (August). Couple of reasons why we want to do this, however my hubby isn't so keen. We have a hard floor Kimberley kamper trailer (pre electric mattress/ instant hot water), and 2 kids under 10. Looking at camping at Thredbo Diggings or Nagario.
    His concerns are getting gear dry like soaking gloves and damp ski boots, and he has commented on theft being a concern. Any thoughts on these matters, and winterising the camper trailer?
     
  2. JeremyG

    JeremyG Active Member

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    Kids under 10 tend to get wet gloves at least. Without power, no way to dry the gear for this many people. I would instead book into the Alpine Adventist Village. Will set you back $50 a night but for that you get hot showers and power. We than just run heater in the van which is sufficient to dry everything everyday. We have never had a problem with theft camping here and at the diggings
     
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  3. Ziggy

    Ziggy Addicted Member
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    Fair concerns.

    I assume you can't have a fire in a portable firepit.

    Google portable diesel heater for camping

    Some folk fabricate a 2nd roof from insulating blanket material.

    Theft? Take valuables with you. Insure.
     
  4. Belly

    Belly Addicted Member
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    Island Bend is better for towables. Ngarigo (and I assume Diggins but never been there) is really designed for tent camping with grassed areas poled off. You'll be on gravel/dirt and I also reckon it's not the coolest for the tent campers as you'll be taking up valuable parking space - and it's pretty busy / popular these days. Whereas at IB you'll get plenty of space to set-up your infrastructure. Just my 2c ;)
     
    #4 Belly, Jul 23, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2017
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  5. skull

    skull Active Member

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    The discovery park camp site is good. There is a spa and sauna, a tv room and drying rooms for ski gear.
     
  6. tele-whippet

    tele-whippet beard stroker
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    There are campers set up at Ngarigo at the moment.
    Take heaps of spare Aldi gloves for the kids. (Ask here on the forums if anyone has spare cheap 2nd hand jackets & pants)
    It can literally blow a gale there, so be prepared for that.
    I don't think theft has ever been a big issue there either.
    Bonus is 10 minutes to Thredbo ---- pizza, burgers, donuts and other hot kid food.
     
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  7. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Part of the Furniture
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    The roads out of both Diggings and Ngariro can be a bit tricky with snow on them Even when it has rained and few cars have slipped and slid their way up and down. They could be very interesting with a trailer.
     
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  8. StuckinQld

    StuckinQld Active Member

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    Thanks for the comments, and we have thought of all these things. Hope to be skiing both PB and Thredbo as we have friends at both the week we are there. We have multiple pairs of mittens/gloves for the kids already and they do get soaked! Have thought we can make use of the friends drying rooms as need be.
    Stayed at Diggings a couple of summers ago, and yes camper trailer parking wasn't the largest amount and Ngarigo is definitely more limited for camper trailers. We saw some caravans there and it is definitely for car /tent camping. Hubby is a very experienced with our 4WD and the camper trailer, and is very experienced in snow driving, but I do know access can be as issue. Watching the long range forecast. I'm keen for a Island bend campout in the summer.
     
  9. ladycamper

    ladycamper Dedicated Member
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    Have stayed in Ngarigo, had no theft issues, hitchhiked to camp, walked in & setup once at 6pm. Rangers check early for vehicle pass, needed to explain I didn't drive a motor vehicle there so hence my standalone tent and it being absolutely free by virtue of not needing vehicle entry pass.
     
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  10. StuckinQld

    StuckinQld Active Member

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    Have an all parks NPWS pass, so no issues there. Gotta make the most of it!
     
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  11. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Part of the Furniture
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    Put fire in camper.
     
  12. silva

    silva Active Member

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    Thredbo Diggings would be better for a camper trailer than Ngarigo. A whole week might be a bit daunting for your first snow camping trip if your camper trailer is not set up for cold weather camping - dont forget that batteries do not perform well in cold conditions - you need a pretty extensive battery and solar system if you are relying on them for power/lights etc in cold conditions for a week (insulate the batteries and more panels required as charging time is limited). If you are well set up (12V electric blankets are awesome and diesel heaters are brilliant) then its very doable. Maybe compromise - do 5 nights at one of the caravan parks or Alpine Adventist so you have access to power (even a cheap $20 blow heater or 2 will keep everything dry and warm) and a drying room and do a couple of nights free camping at Diggings. You may even find that once you look at the cost of purchasing everything you need to make free camping in an alpine environment viable it is less expensive to stay in the caravan parks anyway unless you plan on doing it often - even sleeping bags suitable for real cold conditions are expensive.
     
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  13. Barras

    Barras Active Member

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    Both Diggings and Ngarigo were really busy this weekend, a couple of full size caravans at Ngarigo, as well as this guy, generator and all.
     
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  14. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    four carparking spaces - FFS!
    Looks like I was already asleep or left when that one was taken!
     
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  15. Belly

    Belly Addicted Member
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    Yep, and spare grass space on the left, my point exactly right there!!!
     
  16. Barras

    Barras Active Member

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    About 7am Saturday, the genny woke me up at 6:30 so don't know how long it was going before that.
     
  17. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Ahh, we arrived Saturday evening (after a swim, dinner and a movie - my 12 year old has a very relaxed view of car camping :)!)
     
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  18. Alexski

    Alexski Active Member

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    Go to kozi mountain retreat at sawpit Creek. Beautiful spot in the national park both powered and unpowered sites available . I have been taking camper trailers and tents for years with kids. Hot showers and drying rooms are included. When kids were little we always got powered site so could run $10 heater in camper. Its also sheltered from wind and has large in door kitchen common room if its raining.
     
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  19. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Part of the Furniture
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    Sounds like genny needed some water in the fuel.
     
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  20. StuckinQld

    StuckinQld Active Member

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    Urgh! Not a fan of that! pretty mad if they pulled up next to us.
     
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  21. GS

    GS Addicted Member
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    Or all the campers invite themselves in.
     
  22. hpsauce

    hpsauce Dedicated Member

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    1. no shortage of families with young kids doing this.....at both Ngarigo and Diggins.
    2. I reckon the road OUT of Ngarigo could get slippy if a wet night then clear frozen morning. Otherwise in and out looks OK. And everyone else seems to get campers in and out no probs.
    3. Hire lockers at friday flat and chuck skis in there at end of each day. Maybe boots too! they might dry at least a bit in there overnight. Even if you leave the shells in the lockers and take the kids liners and blast them under car foot heater as much as possible. Kids boot liners are small and easy to manage this way.
    4. What others have said.....multi pairs of gloves and alternate.
    5. I wonder if the Sports centre has washers and dryers. This would be real convenient to plan a couple of drying sessions there with kids gloves etc.
     
  23. alexd

    alexd Dedicated Member

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    That huge thing arrived Friday morning sometime after 8 am. I saw it when I went back at noon to pack up my tent. Wasn't sure if they were actually filming something or what. It's a film dressing room van.

    I've been camping at Ngarigo 3 times this winter so far. I reckon the road is no problem, it's not that steep on the out road. The in road is steeper but still not bad even when snowy or icy. Just give a beep on the horn on the way in before the merge if you're worried about not being able to stop.

    As far as drying gear, I just idle my car for an hour or two with the heater on max heat and fan. It works great and only costs a few bucks of fuel. I reckon you could dry a families worth of gear in any car within 3 hours (crack the windows to let the humid air out easily). That's like only $5-6 of fuel and you can also use that time to charge electronics or warm up yourself, and it makes sure your car battery is fully topped off as well.

    If your camper is a little flimsy I'd bring some screw in anchors or very large stakes and guy out your setup. Some mad gusts I've experienced that can bent tent poles, rip eyelets out of tarps and make the cars a rockin.

    For keeping warm I bought myself two hot water bottles and I heat them up with the LPG camping stove from bunnings. It's LPG and not just butane, so it still has good pressure in the cold. Completely fill the hot water bottles with boiling water (I know it says not to but I'm not infirm) and they're still at around body temp when you wake up. Also good for sitting around camp if it's not conducive to having a fire.

    I left my tent up all week, and left the stove and even a bottle of rum out on the table. I wouldn't be too worried about theft unless you leave valuable stuff lying around in an easy to take fashion.
     
  24. bradster

    bradster Active Member

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    I,ve been doing the camping thing for the past 3 years and with a cheapish(under $100) Anaconda sleeping bag have never been cold. That's sleeping in the car with the windows open a couple of cm's.
     
  25. Jacko4650

    Jacko4650 Well-Known Member

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    Gen
    Generators are not permitted in the National Park - I checked. Of course, they are not an issue of you are not disturbing others.
     
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  26. alexd

    alexd Dedicated Member

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    It seems like there could be cases where someone is exempt, so I wouldn't go around putting water in fuel tanks. Probably best to just have a friendly chat to remind them they're not allowed.
     
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  27. Jacko4650

    Jacko4650 Well-Known Member

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    I'm at Island Bend again at the moment and have been coming here for years; and in different camp set-ups including a camper trailer a few years back. The variety of camp sites, phone reception and nice, clean drop toilets keeps me coming back. Of course the natural beauty of the surroundings is five star. The winds will be a biggie for the older Kimberly camper but of course they are rarely howling when you turn up and establish camp in the seemingly most idyllic location. I have sussed out a couple of spots here at Island Bend if you are interested - one in the lower area and a couple in the higher area. If I need to top up batteries, I use an inverter connected to the car (whilst drying gear??) that powers a battery charger which charges the camping batteries. One of the new 12volt-12volt chargers will do the same. It's fun and the kids won't forget it, but lets hope it's for the right reasons?
     
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  28. Ziggy

    Ziggy Addicted Member
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    Relying on solar to replenish the battery or batteries might be hopeful. Peak sun hours would run up to to 2.5 or so, assuming it's not overcast or the panel(s) shaded. It only needs a quarter shading or a cloudy sky and they're close to useless.
    But the biggest typical draw, the fridge, won't use much if not used in freezer mode. 12 V electric blankets use a lot.
    You don't have the standard recourse of driving to the next camp and recharging on the way from the alternator.
    You prob have a diesel. Running that at idle in camp to get a recharge puts carcinogenic particulates in the air.
     
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  29. alexd

    alexd Dedicated Member

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    Diesel exhaust having lots of particulates, depends on how new the thing is. Modern diesels with a DPF wouldn't be so bad. In fact, modern spark ignition direct injection petrol engines can sometimes be worse if they don't have a particulate filter as well! But during idle, the A/F ratio is so high, that not very many particulates are emitted then from either type of engine. I do agree that you dont want to be breathing much exhaust in any case, but if there's a breeze, I wouldn't worry about it.


    How common are the LPG fuelled absorption refrigerators here? That seems like the best option if you need a fridge. Same reason I use hot water bottles heated with LPG, you can carry a lot of it easily.
     
    #29 alexd, Jul 24, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  30. Ziggy

    Ziggy Addicted Member
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    3 way fridges are becoming uncommon in camper trailers. Probs with heat dissipation, levelling, and in cheaper units effectiveness in high ambient temps.
     
  31. coolair

    coolair Well-Known Member
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    Check the NPWS site details, they are permitted in some areas Nagario camp site ( not defined what ones), not allowed at Island bend, not defined at thredbo Diggings.
    I checked up on this as I would like to use the geni for the microwave and fan heater for limited periods but i dont.
    I can run for around 2 weeks on 9kg lpg and 100a/h battery for water pump and led lights.
     
  32. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Part of the Furniture
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    Why are people taking fridges to the snow - to keep things warm? If you want it fridge temp put it in the tent at night and put it under the tent floor by day. Nature is your fridge down there.
     
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  33. Ziggy

    Ziggy Addicted Member
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    I recently spent time in the desert, down to freezing regularly overnight, and wondered about a reverse cycle unit ;)
    But in the daytime, depending on the design, sun on the fridge box can double the inside cp ambient.
     
  34. ladycamper

    ladycamper Dedicated Member
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    If you're sneaking in a generator please be considerate with its placement and hours of operation because campsite guests also want to enjoy a natural experience.
     
  35. Ziggy

    Ziggy Addicted Member
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    Anyone who runs a gennie near me when it's illegal will get serious push-back.
    I won't camp in a popular place that's gennie-legal any more. It's not necessary. It's toxic. It's disruptive.
     
  36. MattyHoll

    MattyHoll Active Member

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    Even just keeping it in the car? I stayed at Yarrangobilly 2 weeks back, woke up to a frozen bottle of water in the tent haha. I guess that is to be expected when its -8. Beers in the car weren't frozen, just nice and chilled. Even the meat lasted 2 days out of a fridge. But Ngarigo or Diggings might be warmer?
     
  37. Darb

    Darb Old And Crusty
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    Yep, my fridges rarely ever cycle on at all in cold conditions (let alone snowy conditions) ... unlesss I add hot things to it, which could be cooled easily beforehand anyway
     
  38. GS

    GS Addicted Member
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    I don't bother with a fridge when car camping in the snow, just take an esky to stop things freezing.
     
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  39. StuckinQld

    StuckinQld Active Member

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    Fridge is the least of our worries. We have a gel walled fridge built in (so it's coming). Might be there to prevent things freezing.
     
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  40. Jacko4650

    Jacko4650 Well-Known Member

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    Ye
    Yep, always gets a chuckle to tell fellow Queenslanders that you take an eskie to the alps to stop your beer freezing. You almost always get that slight cock of the head to the left 5 degrees!