Monthly Archives: August 2015

RV Park Review – Missouri’s Springfield Route 66 KOA

I haven’t done many RV Park or campground reviews, but felt compelled to give notice to one we recently visited.

We were in Springfield, Missouri for the Birthplace of Route 66 Festival and decided to haul our trailer out instead of going the motel route. We chose the Springfield Route 66 KOA because of its location close to the city. We arrived Friday afternoon and were greeted by the front desk staff and escorted to our campsite (25), per the usual KOA protocol.image

image

The Springfield Route 66 KOA is smaller as most KOAs go, with about 75 RV sites and a combination of 9 Kamping Lodges, Kottages, and Kabins. But the smaller size also meant a more laid back atmosphere with little noise. However, if you’re a fan of railroads, there’s a line nearby that’ll keep your attention. IMG_8342[1]

Our site, number 25, was a full hook-up pull-through site that was nestled between many tall trees, which offered plenty of shade during this hot August weekend.

IMG_8326[1]

But one of the main reasons I want to give notice to the Springfield Route 66 KOA is because of the subject that’s in their name: Route 66. Anyone who’s known me knows that Route 66 is a big part of my life, and has been for more than 20 years. What made this trip darn near perfect was that I was hauling our trailer on Route 66, enroute to a Route 66 festival, while staying at a campground with Route 66 in their name. The only thing that would’ve made it perfect is if the Springfield Route 66 KOA was actually ON Route 66! But as it goes, the KOA is located about a  mile south of Route 66 through the western edge of Springfield.

IMG_8333[1]

Although they may not be located on the shoulders of the fabled Mother Road, they embrace Route 66 as if they’ve been there since the road’s inception in 1926. Owners Scott & Diane King have owned their KOA since 2004 after leaving their home in California. As business owners in a Route 66 town, the Kings definitely get it. From the signs that stand guard next to the homemade cows in the front of the office to the well stocked camp store filled with just about anything a Route 66 road warrior could use, the Springfield Route 66 KOA should be included as a must stop for anyone traveling Route 66. As Diane told me, she’s open to giving just about any kind of Route 66 merchandise a try in the camp store, so there’s a good chance you’ll find something new anytime you go in.

IMG_8365[1]  IMG_8364[1]  IMG_8359[1]  IMG_8363[1]

IMG_8357[1]

IMG_8362[1]

IMG_8361[1] The Springfield Route 66 KOA should be the southwest Missouri stop for any RVer traveling Route 66, and dare I say even the non-RVing Route 66er. The Kamping Kabins, Lodges, and Kottages on the premises offer “komfortable” accomodations and a different way to get your sleeps on Route 66 when compared to a motel, and worth the experience. As a matter of fact, a fellow Route 66er in town for the festival happened to stay in one of the Kabins the same weekend we were there, and she told us she frequents the KOA Kabins all across the country when traveling Route 66.                   b98ec9bf-21ff-4fb4-9f60-8612d71b313dphotodaee997e-f190-480c-ade3-98067a7c04f0_jpg

b98ec9bf-21ff-4fb4-9f60-8612d71b313dphotobbe5e698-2837-4be2-80d9-4e4362485dd3_jpg

b98ec9bf-21ff-4fb4-9f60-8612d71b313dphoto3b57da6a-73a4-4b39-991a-96953e287b03_jpg             (Kabin photos courtesy Springfield Route 66 KOA)

As traveling the two-lane highways of America goes, most non-RVers blow by campgrounds and RV parks without giving them a second look. And admittedly I was that way before I bought my first trailer. But whether you travel by car, motorhome, or have a trailer hitched to your rear, the Springfield Route 66 KOA is worthy of a visit, whether you bunk up for the night or just stop in to buy a Route 66 t-shirt or sticker in the camp store. For my fellow Route 66 enthusiasts reading this, we all know we aim to support those businesses that support Route 66. Let this be your introduction to another Route 66 business to add to that list.

You can find more information about the Springfield Route 66 KOA at their website at http://route66koa.com

 

 

 

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

A Look at Pino Caravan

There are countless small travel trailers in the United States that draw attention due to their unique styling or classic looks. But if you really want to see something that’s different, you need to go to Istanbul, Turkey where you can find Pino Caravan.

Founded in 2009, Pino Caravan is one of just a handful of manufacturers in Turkey. But their offerings are small and utilize some floor plans not typically seen here in the U.S.

Pino trailers come in five floor plans: pi210, 280 Cachalote, 410 Jazz, 410 Blues, and the 340.

The pi210 has a cabin length of just under 7′ and 900 lbs. It can sleep 2 and the dinette can hold 4.

2101 2105 2104

2102

The 280 Cachalote is a rear entry unit with a cabin just under 10′ long, weighing in around 1500 lbs. It’s got a living area for 5 and sleeping area for 3 plus having a bunk over the dinette. They’ve also made room in the rear for a shower.

2801 2802 2803 2804 2805 2806

The 410 Jazz and 410 Blues are basically the same floor plans with a few variations in interior décor. The cabin is 13′ and weighs just under 2,000 lbs. It can sleep up to 4 and the dinette will hold 4, and also comes with a shower.

410b1 410b3 4101 41034102

The last floor plan, the 340, has a cabin length of about 11′ and weight at 1700 lbs. It sleeps up to 3, which is also the capacity of the dinette. Also includes a sink and shower. 3401 3402 3403

The 340 bares a strong resemblance to the Chinese built iCamp, which found its way to a few dealer lots in the U.S. for about a minute back in 2008. iCampElite-FR-775487

The Pino Caravans are built with a lot of components that are household names in the RV industry. They’re built on AL-KO frames, which were the frame of choice for the first generation T@Bs that were built by Dutchmen. Other familiar names you’ll find in a Pino are Dometic, Thetford, and Thule.

In an e-mail with Pino’s Tulu Karatan, she told me “Europeans are very enthusiastic about Pi2010, which offers more than a teardrop model. In Pi2010 one can stand almost totally, 4 people can dine, 2 people can sleep. All included for a perfect weekend escape!”

Now the part you’re wanting to know: How much are they and how can I get one? One and two, I don’t know. I barely found a price on the smallest model, the pi210 and after converting it from pounds, I estimate it costs around $12,000 USD. However, there are no dealers in the U.S. Only in Turkey and a few European nations carry Pino Caravans. All I can say is that if you really have to have one, contact Pino through there website at http://pinokaravan.com and they should be able to help you.

I posted this knowing that there’s a good chance not a one of you (me included) will ever see a Pino, but I like to show some of the unique offerings out there, regardless of where they may be built. However, our reach here at The Small Trailer Enthusiast is international, so this post may reach someone in Europe or Turkey who may very well be able to check one out for themselves. If that’s you, good luck and let us know what you think.

 

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized