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Jerry S
As we approach the heavy RVing season, I'd like to make a suggestion. After years of seeing reviews on this site that indicate that the reviewer did not check out the park or campground before staying there, the review I read today jumped to the top of the list.

It was a fairly long review for Happy Jack Lodge and RV Park in Happy Jack, AZ and gave the park a rating of 1. The first half of the review described the park and said nothing negative. Then they went on to say that the park out in the middle of nowhere and it was 20 miles from anything (stores, restuarants, etc.). They were bored because there was nothing to do in the park. How do you go to a park and not know it is 20 miles from the nearest town? I can understand people being misled by park websites and being disappointed in the facilities and amenities, but this is ludicrous.

So, please do your research. Check this site, one of the park guides like Woodalls, and/or the park website. If you still don't have the information you need, call the park. I know these sources are not perfect - how many reviews have complained about misleading websites, guide ratings that are too high, etc.? If you have specific needs (50Amp, WIFI, etc.) call to make sure these things are available. Again, how many times have complained that all the 50Amp or cable sites were taken. Just because a park listing shows these facilities/amenities, it doesn't mean ALL sites have these things.

It doesn't take that much time and effort to, hopefully, make your stay less disappointing.
Onemoretrail
I have to agree with you Jerry, but for many people sticking a thumb on a map blindfolded or spinning the wheel is so much more fun! laugh.gif
hoefler
I agree totally!! People complain they did not get a preferred site by their standards because the didn't make a reservation. Not the camp grounds fault. Complaining about the traffic noise, no research done. Did they ever think that may be, the highway was not there when the camp ground was built years ago, and it is simply urban growth and there is nothing the camp ground could do, except move. Or how the guy complains he had to get out a 2x to level his rig, come on. This is not a perfect world, if it wasn't for life's challenges, it would be pretty dull.

If there is a REAL problem, by all means, say something. If it is a minor issue you would see anywhere, let it go. I have learned to read reviews with a grain of salt. Look at the author's past reviews, I have noticed, a lot of them find something to complain about, regardless. I have found this site very helpful, and sometimes quit amusing to read what some complain about.
HappiestCamper
OMG - "The dogs were tired of hiking in the woods" - come on!
Jerry S
Happiest,

Thanks for pointing out the dog comment in the review in question.
dalsgal
I read that review yesterday and could not believe the rating they gave it. The first half was full of praises for that place and then, just because it was far from anything they gave it a 1. Why did they stay more than one night if it was too far away from things? Why was it the parks fault the family got bored?

It isn't the campgrounds fault if your cell phone service doesn't work well at their campground.

There is no Walmart in town.

The campground is too is too far from the highway. The campground is too close to the highway.

The campground doesn't have cable is one complaint we get. We don't advertise cable and we cannot get cable because we are one mile outside the city limits of our town.



mikel
Thank God for this website. It's just about all I use exclusively for reviews and it is sad when reviews like this happen.

I've taken my chances a few times here and there with a park that got some mixed ratings sometimes you get burned sometimes not. It's odd to find a park we've been to and thought, "wow, this park has it down", then see a negative review based on proximity to the nearest Sac O' Suds.
Florida Native
QUOTE
it is sad when reviews like this happen.


You are right, but it is going to happen and will continue to happen. This is why it is up to us to evaluate the whole lot of reviews. The universe of campers is like the universe of people. There are some nuts out there. A 1 can bring down the average of a whole lot of 7's and 8's given by good reviewers. The good news is that with a little evaluation we can still get a good idea about a campground.
Texasrvers
This is why we ask reviewers to stick to facts about the campground itself—for example, the general appearance, condition of the sites, how the utilities worked, amenities available, etc. These are the things that most readers want to know about.

So many reviewers want to give a blow by blow description about something that happened to them while they were there—the people next door got into a fight at 2am, and the husband slammed the door, and then sprayed gravel all over our nice, freshly washed RV when he spun out, yadda, yadda. While we understand this may have been a significant event for the reviewer, it has nothing to do with the quality of the campground, and it is very unlikely this will have any bearing on the next person's stay.

Likewise the other end of the spectrum is not good either. Many reviews just say “nice place.” We need a little more than this to post a review.

So please just give us at least 3-4 good, specific, objective facts about the campground, and reviews will be much better and more helpful.
FosterImposters
QUOTE(mikel @ Jul 22 2012, 10:02 AM) *

....then see a negative review based on proximity to the nearest Sac O' Suds....


laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif Well said!
Gayle E.
We've just started using this site in the last few weeks and have found it very helpful. As I read on another thread, throw out the highest & lowest scores, and you'll land in the middle. I think a 1 is ridiculous. If a cg is so bad to deserve a 1, that would have been obvious when driving up to it. I would think the cg would be a dump. At that point, I'd keep on truckin'.
RLM
QUOTE(Gayle E. @ Jul 24 2012, 11:56 AM) *

If a cg is so bad to deserve a 1, that would have been obvious when driving up to it. ...


I've read reviews where the individual gave a 1 and when I checked his/her other reviews found that there were several of those back-to-back in the same month. If I did something like that my DW would take the toad, find the nearest 5 star hotel, and then tell me to call her when I could pick out a 10...if we were still married by then. laugh.gif
mdcamping
I certainly agree about reviews needing detailed info on the campgrounds them self's but just as important is security... I.E. parting, people not following rules...again nothing drawn out but something just briefly said.

This points out that something else is also going on at the campground....

Mike
Jerry S
I wanted to resurrect this thread for the upcoming heavy RV season. If you are unfamiliar with this thread, please (at the very least) read the original post from last year. My main impetus for bringing this thread back to life was a review I read back in January 2013 for the Carlsbad, NM KOA. The reviewer's main complaint was that the KOA was not in Carlsbad, NM or near Carlsbad Caverns National Park. Any, even minimal, research would have told the reviewer that the KOA was well north of Carlsbad and that the national park was south of the town. It would appear that the reviewer did not even check this site - the second and third reviews prior to his review stipulated that the KOA was not in Carlsbad or near the national park. The reviewer's perceived bad experience with the KOA was due to his failure to do any research.
docj
I concur with your advice, but I doubt that those that need it most will take it. I am constantly amazed on RV forums by the number of people who ask questions that could easily be answered by a simple Google search. It's beyond my comprehension why anyone would select a campground without having first used Google Maps to locate it relative to points of interest in the area. Those are, no doubt, the same people who post questions like "I'm driving from Boston to LA, can anyone suggest things to see on the way?" The very fact that they post questions or reviews on this site suggest that they at least own a computer; one would think that learning to use it would be the next step! biggrin.gif
gene007
I am brand new to RV living. For sure I will be reading more reviews. From what I have read so far I feel a little troubled. I have read alot about not having room for larger RVs, no spots available, not able to reserve in advance. I was hoping to take a little of the uncertainty out of travel. Am I being too paranoid?
Regards, Gene sad.gif
dalsgal
I think you are just being a bit over cautious. Try staying in some different CG's closer to home and pay attention to the site size and other things there. Talk to the owner/manager and other RV'ers. You can get some great advice about what to look for and what to avoid. You can get good advice from reading reviews on this site and asking questions. As you get more comfortable with traveling in an RV you will be able to relax and enjoy. RV'ing is fun!
joez
QUOTE(gene007 @ Apr 11 2013, 01:41 AM) *

I am brand new to RV living. For sure I will be reading more reviews. From what I have read so far I feel a little troubled. I have read alot about not having room for larger RVs, no spots available, not able to reserve in advance. I was hoping to take a little of the uncertainty out of travel. Am I being too paranoid?
Regards, Gene sad.gif


Kind of depends on where you want to stay. If you are limiting your search to only public campgrounds (state/COE parks for example) then all the issues you ask about are possible. Many public parks were built when rvs were small and people did not want all the amenities found today in many parks so larger rvs may have difficulty maneuvering and parking there. If you feel you must be at a popular park near water, amusement parks, etc. during prime summer vacation time, then you may have issues finding a spot. Also, if you are in a short season area (lots of winter, not much summer) you will be competing with lots of folks rushing to take advantage of the few sites available.

If, on the other hand, you are like many of us, and are willing to park in a clean, safe full service commercial park that is not right next to a touristy attraction, then you should have no problems finding suitable space. We have literally stayed in dozens of commercial and public parks in the last few years with very few problems. We avoid high traffic areas when the kids are out of school and park in public parks during the week and leave before the weekend. If there is somewhere that we want to stay that is very popular, we make reservations well in advance - if reservations are not available we probably will not even try to go there. Unless you are absolutely committed to a specific spot during a specific time, you should be able to find many acceptable parking places.
Fitzjohnfan
QUOTE(docj @ Apr 8 2013, 08:57 PM) *

I concur with your advice, but I doubt that those that need it most will take it. I am constantly amazed on RV forums by the number of people who ask questions that could easily be answered by a simple Google search. It's beyond my comprehension why anyone would select a campground without having first used Google Maps to locate it relative to points of interest in the area. Those are, no doubt, the same people who post questions like "I'm driving from Boston to LA, can anyone suggest things to see on the way?" The very fact that they post questions or reviews on this site suggest that they at least own a computer; one would think that learning to use it would be the next step! biggrin.gif


docj, when I first joined several RV forums a few years ago, I would jump at the chance to offer suggestions to these types of questions, but I see your point, that these people really need to do some of their research themselves. There was just another post on another forum that said "going to Denver, Yellowstone and Mt. Rushmore, can you suggest some nice places to stay"? (Sure, stay at your computer a few hours and look at this website)

Isn't have the fun of taking a trip is in the planning? Occasionally you make a mistake once in a while, but it will give you more to talk about later.
docj
QUOTE(Fitzjohnfan @ Apr 11 2013, 03:35 PM) *

Isn't have the fun of taking a trip is in the planning? Occasionally you make a mistake once in a while, but it will give you more to talk about later.


I totally agree. Between Google Maps, TripAdvisor.com, Yelp, and RVParkReviews, trip planning has been made relatively easy. It's a heck of a lot easier (and cheaper) than it was when you had to buy guide books on different areas as you traveled. We consider it fun to find interesting places to see or good, local restaurants to eat at. That's what makes RVing so much fun for us.
busyteach
Ah oh, I do admit sometimes I ask about things to see from folks that have been there sad.gif. Lazy on my part maybe, but I also like to hear other's opinions, especially those that might live in a state. You ask me about Kentucky, I'll tell you what I think are neat places to go out of the many you might find in a search. Please excuse the next time I ask this question haha. No offense taken, none meant.

Paul & Debbie
2011 Winnebago Via
Tom
QUOTE(Jerry S. @ Jun 4 2012, 09:08 PM) *


It was a fairly long review for Happy Jack Lodge and RV Park in Happy Jack, AZ and gave the park a rating of 1. The first half of the review described the park and said nothing negative. Then they went on to say that the park out in the middle of nowhere and it was 20 miles from anything (stores, restuarants, etc.). They were bored because there was nothing to do in the park. How do you go to a park and not know it is 20 miles from the nearest town? I can understand people being misled by park websites and being disappointed in the facilities and amenities, but this is ludicrous.


I laughed reading that review. As you say, the first half sounds like it is leading up to a 9 or 10 rating... then they give it a 1, basically only because they are far away from everything! Which is something a lot of campers are actually looking for.

Oh well, see you on the road.

HappiestCamper
Just saw one where they were complaining that the lady on the phone didn't tell them that dogs weren't allowed on the beach, nor in beach front sites. A quick check of their website says "Sorry, no pets are allowed on the Beach Front Sites as pets are not allowed on the beach."
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