Our First Real RV Test


Life is full of surprises

As I mentioned last Friday, I took a few days off to go on our first “official” RV trip. Since I’m planning to live in the RV for 12 months next year, I have to do some training first. This is why we have several small trips planned this summer. Three weeks ago, we went to Lake Brome for a 9k trail run followed the next morning by a 10k road run. We decided to “boondock” (wild camping with our RV) for the night. Two weeks ago, we had a soccer tournament a 2 hour drive from home; we spent the weekend in a real campground. Last week, I took a 5 day trip with my family and we slept at three different places. Here’s a summary of our adventures so far…


The RV with a full tank of water… with no water inside

When we bought our RV, we spent 4 hours with a technician telling us how it works. When we got to the “water section”, it was pretty simple; you fill your fresh water tank with water and you open the faucet whenever you need water. Hum… even my three years old can figure this out.

So we go on our first trip with a full tank of fresh water. I’m not that stupid so I tested the water faucet before leaving. Fresh water was flowing like home. After my 9k trail run, I was dead tired. In this situation, there is nothing better than duck sausages along with a cold beer! We had a great BBQ and spent nice time with my sister-in-law and her family. After our great meal, it was time to pack-up our stuff, get inside the RV and wash the dishes. I opened the faucet, water was still flowing…until I was done with the dishes… this can’t be, I mean, I had filled the fresh water tank and I ran out of water after washing 10 plates! There wasn’t a single drip of water left anywhere in the RV and the tank was still showing as “full”…

I spent the weekend without water and came back home worried about this issue. But I quickly remembered the most important thing the technician told us when we bought the RV:

For each problem you will encounter in your RV, dont panic, there is a solution.

At least, I knew there was a solution; I just had to figure it out! I’ve spent three hours trying to play with valves, opening and closing the faucet and filling the tank until it was dripping under the RV. There was nothing to do; there wasn’t water inside the RV…

This is when I decided to chat with another soccer parent that has a similar RV… He simply asked:

Did you hear your water pump running?

Man I felt stupid. I discovered there was a fuse for my water pump and the fuse was burnt. Here’s what needed to be done:

#1 Replace the fuse

#2 Put the water pump on

#3 Open the faucet

I guess I only got the last part of the technician’s explanation! He told me I would forget about 70% of what he said. He was right!


Introducing Freefall…

Since my RV will be part of my daily life next year, we decided to name it. We decided to call it “Freefall” as it is a great image of what we will be doing; leaving everything behind to jump into the mist. This is the closest thing to skydiving I tried a few years ago and I think the name Freefall is the perfect fit for the situation.


free fall

This is “Freefall” our RV on the picture during our first real boondocking experience. While wild camping at Lake Brome was interesting, we were authorized by the run organizer to sleep on the site. This picture was taken after we decided to simply stop by a lake for our first night last week. We were supposed to camp at my father-in-law’s property half way to our final destination. However, when he gave us the directions to get there, he was as clear as a politician. Results; it was 7pm and we couldn’t figure out where his place was when I passed by a small beach near a lake. We stopped there for the night and it was exciting! We didn’t ask anyone for permission and we felt a bit like outlaws… I must admit it was a cool feeling between being scared and being super enthusiastic about this new lifestyle.

Around 11pm, there was a car that stopped right next to our RV… we thought this was the end of a great evening. However, the car just turned around and left. Nothing else happened that night and we woke up the next morning to drink our coffee by the lake. A city employee even welcomed us a few minutes after and invited us to take our shower and play by the beach not too far from where we camped. If boondocking is always like this; we will have tons of fun!


I really like this new lifestyle!

This first “real” RV trip was a good test for me on many levels;

I drove over 1,000 miles and have gotten used to Freefall.

We spent 5 full days with a family of 5 in this small environment without killing each other.

We tested our solar panel – we are truly 100% energy sufficient!

I enjoyed boondocking and the overall liberty that comes when you travel with your home.

I loved the daily routine that comes with the RV.

I pictured myself living like that for several months.

I also confirmed what I believed; even though we are sleeping in a very small environment, the world becomes your playground, becomes your home. One day, my living room comes with a sunset on the lake and the next day, it transforms into a mountain with birds and squirrels around my “couch”.

The most amazing thing is that, for a very long time, we spent 5 full days together as a family. We had the chance of spending so much quality time together. We usually don’t do this at home as parents are busy taking care of chores while kids are playing with their iPads or doing other activities.

While there’s always something odd happening with the RV like water not coming out of the faucet, it’s a real life full of adventure that is about to start! I can’t wait for our next trip!



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