Friday, 31 August 2018

What is the Best Line for Surf Fishing? 

Once upon a time, anglers didn’t need to pay any attention to the type of saltwater fishing line they were using. It was an easy choice, mono was the only option, but then fluorocarbon made an appearance offering improved resistance to abrasion and lower visibility. A few years later braided lines started appearing which really shook things up and allowed for far more options. Over the years technical innovations have improved all the fishing line types available to us, but braided lines have probably seen the biggest improvement. In this article, we’re going to take a look at each of the line types: Monofilament, Fluorocarbon and Braided lines, discuss their pros and cons and their unique properties.

So, what is the best line for surf fishing? The answer is braided lines. Braided fishing lines have very little stretch, low visibility, high strength to thickness ratio and low memory. 

For more details as to why we think this is the case and what makes braided lines stand out read on.

Best Line for Surf Fishing

Monofilament Saltwater Fishing Line

Pros: One of the biggest selling points of mono or copolymer fishing lines is that they are cheap to buy. If you’re using new line, it cast very well, it’s easy to knot with and the knots hold well. The line also has a certain amount of stretch, which in some circumstances can be beneficial. For example, the stretch will work in your favor if you’re topwater fishing, where predatory fish tend to slam your bait, in these circumstances the stretch can help set the hook. Mono is also more resistant to abrasion when compared to braid or fluorocarbon. So, if your line gets caught on an underwater snag, you’re less likely to lose the fish when using Mono.

Cons: Mono is not without its pitfalls. The fishing line can be incredibly stretchy, with some types stretching up to 30% when under load. This inherent stretchiness can make it challenging to feel light bites and you may not feel them at all. Additionally, maneuvering a hooked fish away from obstructions or locations that could cause a snagging risk is difficult with a stretchy line.

Perhaps the biggest drawback with monofilament is its memory. With time, mono will end up taking on the shape of the spool, this causes the line to loop and create friction as it passes through the rods guides. The increased friction will cause decreased casting distances and can increase the likelihood of tangles and knots forming. This behavior is especially apparent during colder periods.

Lastly, monofilament will degrade if exposed the sunlight over time, weakening the line and increasing the chances of breakages and snapping due to shocks.

Take Aways

Modern-day mono is almost certainly an improvement over previous decades. The latest iterations of the line are less prone to stretching and memory, they resist abrasion better than any other line and they are stronger and thinner than anything gone before.

If you know how to work with monofilament and you are aware of its inherent strengths and weaknesses, it offers an inexpensive way to get great value. It’s especially well-suited to new anglers, as it’s forgiving, cheap to buy and it’s easy to use. Once you’ve developed your touch as an angler, consider moving onto Fluorocarbon or Braid.

Fluorocarbon Saltwater Fishing Line

Pros: One of the biggest advantages of fluorocarbon is that it boasts a refractive index which closely resembles that of water, in practical terms this means that once it’s submerged in water it’s incredibly difficult to spot. Fluorocarbon is also extremely tough and resists abrasion very well, this means in many situations where snags and underwater structures could cause a problem, fluorocarbon offers distinct advantages.

Line stretch is still present, but its much improved over monofilament, you can expect between 5 and 10 % line stretch. Additionally, fluorocarbon will not float, it’s spool memory is minimal and it isn’t broken down by Ultra Violet rays as quickly as monofilament is, meaning it’s shelf and use life is extended.

Cons: Not all brands of fluorocarbon are created equally, so you may need to shop around to find a decent brand with a proven history. The line is somewhat stiffer than monofilament, which can make working with it challenging at times, knots may slip if not secured correctly. We’ve seen people use a spot of super glue to secure fluorocarbon knots securely. Additionally, as the line sinks quickly, it’s not best suited for lures that play across the surface of the water.

Take Aways

Fluorocarbon is frequently used as leader material when surf casting, which it’s particularly well suited for. Due to its unique refractive index which closely mimics that of water, it becomes near invisibly once submerged, which is a great feature when fishing in clear waters and fussy fish. As it’s also resistant to abrasion and not as stretchy as monofilament, it’s perfectly well suited for use in leader line. Overall we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend fluorocarbon for surf fishing, it offers boasts several unique features and is a great choice for anyone looking to move away from mono.

Braided Saltwater Fishing Line

Pros: Braided lines are made from synthetic fibers wound and intertwined into a rope-like structure. This structure allows for braided lines to provide significant strength while maintaining a small diameter. Not only does this mean the lines are harder to spot in the water, but they are easier to cast and provide greater amounts of sensitivity to the angler due to very little stretch. Even if you happen to snag your lure or hook on an underwater obstacle, braided lines are so strong that it’s not uncommon for hooks to be snapped or straightened out rather than the line breaking. They are excellent for fishing in areas with heavy cover or weeds, offering the opportunity for fisherman to move fish out of cover with sheer force.

Additionally, braided lines offer a significantly longer shelf life when compared to monofilament or fluorocarbon lines, and do not hold any spool memory. As braided lines are significantly stronger than other line types, the option of choosing a much thinner line diameter while still providing enough strength is an option.

Cons: The strength of braided lines is also one of its disadvantages if you snag on something it can be very difficult to break. I’ve seen rods and reels break before the line does. This strength can also place more pressure and wear and tear on the rest of your gear, as shocks and pressure is directly applied to your gear rather than the line snapping. Despite their diameter, they can be spotted in more easily in clear waters, but this is not often an issue when surf fishing. When tying braided lines it’s important to be careful and leave a small tag to prevent line slippage, specialist knots can be used which are better suited for braided lines to help avoid this issue.

Take Aways

Our biggest concern with braided lines is the potential for knot slippage. However, if you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and their recommended knots, then knot strength should not be an issue. Your normal favorite knot may not be the best choice for braided lines.

The hallmark lack of stretch inherent in all braided lines will make sure you’re aware of every movement taking place with your lure or bait, which means you’re going to be able to react quickly and set a hook if required.

As braided lines are thinner, slicker and supple, they can achieve much greater casting distances as well as increased spool capacity. However, braids tend to be less effective at resisting abrasion when compared to monofilament or fluorocarbon.


Any angler interested in surf fishing has a range of lines available to them, with each type offering a range of advantages and disadvantages. Monofilament is cheap, readily available and abrasion resistant. Fluorocarbon is near invisible when submerged, is less stretchy and resist abrasion. Braided line is fantastically strong, light, and can be cast for miles, but it doesn’t resist abrasion as well as the other two line types.

Given all the pros and cons of the line types, we think a braided fishing line is the best choice for surf fishing and should be at the top of your fishing list if you want to get in some serious surf fishing.

The post What is the Best Line for Surf Fishing?  appeared first on Crow Survival.


Thursday, 30 August 2018

10 Saltwater Night Fishing Tips for Maximizing Fishing Success

As the sun begins to set, fish will begin to move inshore to feed, safe in the knowledge that the blanket of nightfall offers them some protection from predators. As an angler, fishing at night can increase our chances of having success, largely because the fish are closer to shore and are feeding.

However, fishing at night is not without its own set of problems. Sitting on a dark barely lit stretch of isolated beach can be an unnerving experience, and they aren’t without their own dangers, especially in remote or unfamiliar locations.

Most anglers will tend to band together on such nights, even to the point that some locations are crowded with fishermen, especially on the most industrious evenings. So, if you’re worried about fishing at night, there should be plenty of locations where you can fish in the company of other like-minded individuals, including well-illuminated piers and promenades.

But if you prefer your own company and you’re not worried by the dark and isolation, then there are many locations you can cast out your baited hook for some monster fish. But, I would still recommend fishing with a friend for safeties sake, especially if you’re heading to more dangerous shorelines.
Angling during the night time is most productive between 8 pm and 3 am, especially if high tide hits at around 12 am.

Saltwater Night Fishing Tips

Clear and calm nights are better for night time fishing compared to windy rough seas. This is predominantly because fish are able to feed closer shore when the seas are rougher, so there’s a less of a need to do so in twilight hours as well.

In calm, clear waters, fish will be active once the sun has completely set, if the moon is out this can be off-putting to fish, preventing them from moving into shallower waters.

To maximize our chances of success, we’re looking for nights that are cool, crisp, calm and with the tides working in our favor. We’ve had great success during frosty winter evenings when every other sensible person is wrapped up in bed, but this is the time to maximize our fishing success.

Choose The Right Location

Before heading out to a fishing location during the night, you must check it out during the daytime. Take a look when the tide is out so you can get a good idea of what the seabed looks like and where any potential hazards are located.

Doing this not only allows you to avoid snags and hazards, but you’ll be able to see the casting distance to interesting features such as sandbars, weed beds and rocks. Additionally, you’ll be able to see how you can get to your fishing location safely and what you should look out for when the visibility is poor.

Fishing a location during daylight hours can be dangerous, doing so in the dark when you’re unfamiliar with the landscape is doubly so. Know where your exits are, where any cliffs or rock formations are located and make sure your fishing spot won’t be threatened by large waves or the swell.

It’s a good idea to choose a location which has a shorter distance between the low and high water marks. This will allow you to set everything up and not have to continuously move as the tide comes in or goes out. You want to keep your movement to a minimum when visibility is poor.

The location you choose when night fishing can have a huge impact on your likelihood of success, so pick your site with care. Remember which way the tides are going and reference your daytime reccy when deciding on a spot. Keep in mind that the tides ebb and flow will go in opposite directions depending on whether the tide is coming in or going out.

Setup your base camp above the high tide mark. You’ll be able to tell where to high tide normally reaches by the previous tide lines or the debris deposited on the beach. Just bear in mind that spring tides tend to push further up the beach, this can be emphasized if there’s a strong onshore wind.
It’s a good idea to have some sort of shelter at your base of operation, this can be a purpose made tent or even an umbrella. This helps keep tackle and bait dry and can be a pleasant retreat from the wind and cold if required.

Set Everything Up From the Start

Taking to the time to set up an organized central base when fishing, especially when it’s from the beach, can save a lot of headache and time later on. Making sure the vital and essential pieces of gear are near at hand can make your life much easier.

Take special care with live bait. Many live baits are susceptible to cold weather, wind, rain and colder temperatures can quickly kill baits such as worms. Make sure the bait is stored in an out of the way location, you don’t want to be standing on a Tupperware box by accident.

It’s a good idea to have a few different kinds of rigs set up before you head out fishing, you can even pre-bait them to make your life easier. When its dark and possibly cold, the last thing you want to be doing is setting up a fiddly and intricate rig. Many rod rests have bars and clips that are specially made for holding unused rigs.

Having a spare reel to hand is must have, untangling line or snags during daylight hours is hard enough, when its dark it’s a near impossible task. Swapping the reel out for another one is much easier and will maximize the time you have your bait in the water and therefore increases the chances of landing a fish.
The same goes for many of the small yet essential pieces of gear you have in your tackle box. In the dark stuff seems to just vanish, only to be discovered again when the sun has risen. Having duplicates of your must-have items such as knives, scissors and pliers can make your life much easier if something is misplaced on a rock somewhere.

Illuminate Your Surroundings

A fuel-powered lamp can be a great source of light as well as heat, the problem is they can be dangerous and fiddly to operate. If you plan on using one, make sure you know how to do so safely and ensure it’s located in an out of the way location where it’s unlikely to be knocked over. A lamp pole is a great investment as you can adjust the height of the lamp and keep it well clear of your feet and casting.

If you’re uncomfortable with fuel lamps, headlamps are another great option. LEDs have come a long way in recent years and are perfectly capable of replacing traditional light bulbs, they are also very energy efficient, which means you can get many hours of lighting out of a single set of batteries.
Another advantage of headlamps is that your hand are free to get on with the actual fishing.

Practice in the Daytime

It can be a challenge to accurately cast when it’s dark, even for experienced anglers. Not only do you not know where your bait has landed, but knowing where to cast is difficult. It’s a great idea to practice casting in the same location during the daylight hours, you can then use that knowledge to cast accurately when it’s dark.

You can also employ a fixed spool reel to ensure you don’t overcast or alternatively use the magnetic brake controls on your multiplier reel to limit your casting distance.

When it’s dark, fish are generally feeding much closer to shore, so there’s very little reason to cast out beyond the horizon.

Taking a few minutes to familiarise yourself with daytime casting can save you a lot of headaches once the sun has set.

Spotting a Bite

The lack of light can make spotting a bite challenging. However, there are a couple of easy solutions. Simply adding a fishing glow stick to the end of the rod make spotting a bite a piece of cake, they come in packs of 10 or more and a single tip can last a whole night of fishing. Alternatively, you can wrap the tip of your rod in some reflective tape or simply paint it white with a spot of Tippex. Problem sorted!

Just make sure your rod tip is within your line of sight, you don’t want to be continually looking up at it, not only is this uncomfortable but it can cause neck cramps after a while.

For a high tech solution, consider a rod alarm. These can be as simple as a bell placed on the line, or an electronic device that detects movements in the line and signals an alarm if a bite is detected.

Keep Warm and Alert

Having a great nights sleep the previous evening is the best way to avoid your night time fishing trip from being miserable, this helps you stay warm and alert. Avoid consuming alcohol or building a fire, as these will make you feel worse once the effects have started to wear away.

It’s been said before, but layering is a great way of keeping warm when the temperature drops at night. Lots of thinner layers are normally better than one thick layer as it’ll allow you to remove some if your too hot or add more if you’re too cold. Having a thermos of hot drinks and some food is a great way to pick yourself up if you feel yourself beginning to flag. Also, a hat is a must-have item, every fisherman should own at least one hat.

Fish Don’t Need to See Your Lure

You might not think it, and I was certainly a bit skeptical when I went night fishing with lures for the first time, but fish don’t need to see your lure to be attracted to it. Originally I thought I’d need to invest in some sort of luminescent lure, or something that was powered by batteries, but that’s not the case.
Many moons ago, when I had more hair, I had a lot to learn about fishing. I still have a lot to learn, but I know at least know that fish don’t necessarily need to see the lure to take it.

On my very first cast on my very first-night fishing excursion, I caught a fish with just a standard lure. At that time I didn’t quite understand why that was the case but the upshot was that I no longer worried about fishing at night with lures.

Many fish species are less reliant on vision to locate their prey, instead placing more emphasis on movement, sound, vibrations, and smells. I’ve proved this time and again by using small lures in the dead of night in disturbed dirty water, but still managed to catch plenty of fish. Common sense would suggest that this is incredibly difficult for the fish to do, but they time and again take my lures in these conditions.


So, don’t doubt the lured that you’re using, you don’t need anything fancy or glow in the dark. Any decent lure can work when saltwater night fishing.

Give Some Thought to Size and Shape of Lures

In my opinion, the action, shape, and size of a lure are far more important than almost anything else. This is doubly so when you’re fishing after the sun has set.

It’s these design aspects that give your lure it’s characteristics as it moves through the water. Fish are incredibly adept at tracking these movements and vibrations back to the source. During the twilight hours, predatory fish are highly attuned to the movements and vibrations around them as it signifies their next meal.

When picking out a lure to use, I would normally recommend trying to match it the type of baitfish you’d expect to see in the area. For example, if we’d expect to see herring in the water, I’ll choose a lipless bait or flat crank. These type of lures mimic the movement and vibrations of the bit fish very well and therefore very attractive to the predatory fish.

Color Matters, Just Make Sure It’s Black

Even though I’ve already stated that color doesn’t matter, I need to contradict myself slightly and say that black lures work very well.

Darkly colored or black lures are incredibly effective both in the daytime and during the night-time, they just work, but there is a very good reason for this as well.

All predatory fish, but specifically those that specialize in fishing at night time, are fantastic at identifying silhouettes of their prey from below. So, the stronger the silhouette produced by the lure, they greater the chances of it being taken by a fish.

You might not think it, but a dark colored lure is actually easier to see from below when compared to a lighter colored lure. The reason for this is even when it’s dark, the light produced by the moon and stars creates a bright sky, so any darkly colored objects that block out this moon and starlight are easy to spot. A lighter color of a lure is harder to distinguish from the bright sky, so it’s therefor more challenging for the fish to see it.

Avoid Glow in The Dark Lures

I’ve tried nearly every lure when fishing at night, and without a doubt, glow in the dark lures are less effective than standard lures. The only exception to this is if you’re in some seriously deep water, where you might find luminescent baitfish.

If you’re night fishing in coastal waters, you’re not going to see much natural bioluminescence, except maybe for plankton. That’s not to say that it doesn’t have its place in night lures. A small amount of glow in the dark paint for eyes, or for a few spots down the side of the lure can draw attention to it. But a full lure made out of glow in the dark material just looks odd and will probably put fish off rather than attract them.

Final Thoughts

Fishing at night can be great fun, but in order to maximize your chances of success, you need to be organized. Wearing the right clothes and making sure you’re equipped with the right gear can massively increase your enjoyment. Spending a few minutes scoping out your chosen fishing spot during the daylight hours is highly recommended, it might just make the difference between success and potential disaster.

With a little bit for forward planning, you’re nearly guaranteed to catch fish on a twilight fishing trip.

The post 10 Saltwater Night Fishing Tips for Maximizing Fishing Success appeared first on Crow Survival.


Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Do Portable Fish Finders Work?

Technology is advancing at a terrific rate and impacts nearly every aspect of your life, even something as simple as fishing. If you’re someone that frequently fishes from the shore or from a Kayak, you may have looked on at people in bigger boats with a touch of jealousy. Having a bigger boat means you may have a big advantage when it comes to locating fish, this advantage is, of course, a fish finder. However, advances in technology and readily available smartphones mean that portable fish finders are becoming increasingly popular. So, do portable fish finders work?

These convenient fish finders claim to be able to tell you a range of information, from depth and water temperatures to fish locations and movement. All you need to do is connect the fish finder to your phone, cast it out and wait for a wealth of information to be updated on your phone screen. All of this sounds amazing, but do these portable fish finders actually work and are they worth the expense? Within this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at this technology allowing you to decide for yourself if it’s something you’d like to invest in. We’ve used the Deeper PRO Plus Smart Sonar for our testing, there are of course many models available, but we’ve been very happy with the results of this model. You can find this model here


So the first question to answer is, do portable fish finders work? The answer is a resounding YES, they work very well in our testing and experience. We’ve managed to accurately gauge the depth of the water, locate shoals of fish and individual fish swimming around, as well as record the temperature of the water.

If that doesn’t convince you, here are a few more features that may sway you:

  • Wi-fi connectivity, no wires required
  • No internet data usage required when in use
  • Compatible with most phones including Android and iOS
  • Suitable for a range of fishing styles, including kayaking, bank, river, pier and more
  • Suitable for salt water and fresh water environments
  • Fantastic operating range up to 300ft
  • Accurate depth mapping up to 260ft.

There’s no doubt in my mind that these devices tick all the boxes in terms of functionality and performance, but that’s not to say that there aren’t some quirks and challenges posed when using them. Overall though, I would say that investing in one of these devices might just change the way you fish forever. Regardless if you prefer salt water, fresh water or ice fishing, these devices work in a range of fishing environments.

Setting Up a Portable Fish Finder

Setting up a fish finder is relatively straightforward as long as you have everything you need to hand. The device itself only really needs a smartphone to pair it with to get started, either an iOS or Android device will do the trick, the smartphone acts as the fish finder screen. So if you don’t have a smartphone, then you might want to reconsider buying a portable fishing finder unless you want to pay for both. As well as a smartphone, I would recommend a couple of other items to make your life easier and possibly safer.

It’s well worth investing in a waterproof and buoyant overboard case for your phone, the last thing you’ll want to do is lose your phone over the side of your Kayak, or off the end of the pier while you’re checking out the fish finder. Even if your phone is waterproof, it can still sink, so buying a case that floats is a must have. They only cost a few dollars and could save you losing your precious phone.

If you don’t already have one, you’ll need an extra fishing rod and reel. This will be used to cast the fish finder out to your desired location and for retrieving it when you’re finished. If you’ve been fishing for a while, you probably have several spare rods lying around, if you don’t, now’s the perfect the perfect time to invest in one. You’ll also need some heavy duty fishing line and clip to attach the portable fish finder to the line.

Minor Complaints

These fish finders can have some minor niggles that can cause a certain amount of frustration, they can be annoying, but in my opinion, they aren’t deal breakers and I still enjoyed using the device. My biggest complaint was that the temperature readings were not always accurate or consistent, with significant variations with each cast and differences between the manually verified temperature and what the fish finder was reporting. These differences were not necessarily massive, but they were enough to potentially cause an issue, depending on what species of fish you were trying to catch.

The other annoyance I encountered is that after casting the sonar would frequently lose contact with the phone and would require a restart of the phone’s application to pick the connection back up again. I’m not sure if the shock of hitting the water caused the disconnect or if it was due being temporarily submerged in water, but it happened nearly 50% of the time. Closing the application and restarting it only took a few seconds, but it was still irritating. I think it could be prevented with better shock insulation or if the phone application automatically tried to reconnect if the signal was lost.

Even with these two issues I still think it’s a great buy.

Portable Fish Finder Pros and Cons

It’s time to tackle what’s good, what’s bad and what might cause an issue with these innovative devices. Like just about everything else in the world, there are some great features about these fish finders as well as some drawbacks, how serious these are and whether or not they are a deal breaker is a decision you’ll need to make. We also think there is one thing that could potentially be catastrophic but can be avoided with some forethought and by choosing the right gear.

Pros: You can use a fish finder without the expense of a boat. For a fraction of the cost and upkeep of a boat, you can use a fishing finder that actually works from the shore. It’ll tell you nearly everything you could possibly want, from depth to temperature to where the fish are and where they’re moving to. You can now tell whether or not you’re fishing in spots with no fish, which is amazing and can really take your fishing to the next level. This has the potential for being a significant game-changer for anglers.

Cons: Even though they are much cheaper than owning a boat, they are not cheap by any means. The one we used for this article is at the lower end of the cost spectrum at about $200, the price goes up from there. There’s also the two little niggling traits I’ve already talked about, which are the constant disconnects after casting and the temperature variations. You’ll also need to charge the devices regularly, but each charge should last around 10 hours, which is probably more than enough for most people.

As well as the cons listed above, we think there are a couple of other issues that have the potential for ruining your day, even though we didn’t experience them ourselves. I’m sure we’ve all lost gear before on a cast, whether that’s due to a snapped line or getting tackle wrapped around a tree branch, it’s happened to us all. Now imagine that happening with a $200 spinner on the end of your line, it’s almost nightmare material. So, if you want to avoid having to swim after your fish finder or climb an oak tree to retrieve it from a branch, you’ll need to be extra careful of your surroundings and where you’re casting. I would also strongly recommend using a very strong fishing line, you don’t need to worry about how visibly it is or any of that other stuff, go as strong as you can.

How Do Portable Fishing Finders Work?

Fishfinders use the same technology as military sonar which in itself was inspired by the way dolphins and other marine animals navigate. Essentially an electrical signal is turned into a sound wave by something called a transducer, this transducer is also known as a hydrophone. This sound wave propagates through the water and will be distorted or bounced back when it encounters something solid, such as a rock, fish or the bottom. These reflected sound waves bounce back to the water’s surface where they are picked up by the fish finder.

The fish finder can then use these reflective sound waves to build up a picture of what’s happening under the water’s surface, this, in turn, is displayed on the LCD screen of the fish finder or in the case of a portable version, it’s transmitted to your phone to be shown on your phone’s screen. Differing sizes and consistencies of objects will show different telemetry on the screen, which is how we can differentiate between a fish and a rock. The scanning of the water can happen very quickly, so it’s possible to spot when fishing is moving and in what direction, which can increase your chances of success by a huge amount.

Do Portable Fish Finders Work: Conclusion

When these portable fish finders were first released, I was a bit dubious as to how effective they would be, so I waited for a few years to see how the technology progressed. In my opinion, we’re now at a point where portable fish finders are just as effective as any other fish finder, and the price has come down massively in the last few years, they are now much more affordable than they were even a few years ago. When I bought my the portable fish finder, it set me back by about $200, but over the months of using it, I would say it was definitely worth the investment. If you’re on the fence about buying one of these products, I can hand on heart recommend them for anyone that fishes from the shore or a Kayak. As I said before, it’s definitely worthwhile using a heavy-duty line for the fish finder, you really don’t want to lose it on the first case. Buying some $20 braided line is a drop in the ocean compared to losing the whole gadget, so it should be part of your purchase.

The post Do Portable Fish Finders Work? appeared first on Crow Survival.


What is Powerbait Made Of?

What’s multicolored, smelly, floats in the water and surprisingly effective at catching fish? The answer is of course Powerbait. Since its launch, Powerbait has quickly become a firm favorite of Anglers all over the world and can be found in nearly every tackle box. Berkley, the producers of Powerbait, have spent years perfecting their recipes to entice fish to bite, but I’ve always wondered what is Powerbait made of, and is it non-toxic and safe to use?

At first glance, Powerbait closely resembles play-doh, it has a similar consistency, feel and comes in a range of colorful hues, so does it have a similar recipe? The purpose of this article is to answer all of these questions and to turn you into a manmade bait aficionado. One thing is certain, it has taken years of research, teams of scientists, and endless trials and experimentation to get the recipe perfected, and even now new versions are released promising even more effective baits and better odds of catching fish.

Within the industry, Powerbait is known as a dough bait, which is easy to understand why, as it closely resembles dough. Powerbait is made from a combination of an oil-based resin and PVC, in addition to the two main ingredients, a range of scents and smells are added to give the bait its signature stench.

PVC is a synthetic manmade plastic which begins its life as an odorless white powder. In order to create the dough like consistency, the lab produced PVC is mixed with an oil-based resin, this mixture is then heat treated until the mixture becomes dough-like, additional oil or PVC can be added to increase or decrease the viscosity of the resultant dough.

The oil used in the production process actually helps keep the Powerbait smell contained within the dough, essentially creating a barrier which stops it from escaping. Once you begin to mold the bait to your hook, the scents will begin to be released and will help to attract the fish. In addition to the scents, Powerbait is often brightly colored or flecked with shiny particles, these flourishes help the bait become more appealing to fish. As Powerbait is oil based, it doesn’t easily dry out, however, given enough time or if not stored correctly, it will become brittle and flaky. If you have dry Powerbait, there are a few tricks you can do to help soften up which we’ll cover later on in this article.

Does Powerbait Work?

Gulp and Powerbait are extremely popular baits, and for good reason, they work! We’ve put together a small list of reasons as to why Powerbait is so effective:

It Doesn’t Sink: One of the biggest selling points of Powerbait is that it floats, which is a big advantage if you’re fishing in an area with a weedy bottom. With a little bit of trial and error, you can create a rig that will ensure your bait floats just above the weeds, which is where most of the bigger fish will be cruising.

It’s Easy to Use and Clean: If you’ve ever used any live baits before, you know how messy and fiddly they can be. The big advantage with Powerbait has over live baits is that it comes in an easy to store jar of dough, the dough itself is easy to manipulate and form and doesn’t stick to things. Perhaps the only drawback is the smell used as an attractant, but this can be easily washed off.

It Lasts a Long Time: Powerbait comes is very handy small jars which are incredibly easy to just pop into your pocket or backpack. One tiny jar can be used over the course of several fishing trips, a little bit goes a long way.

It’s Effective: Powerbait is a very effective bait, it simply works. I’ve been personally having success with Powerbait for several years, it’s especially useful when fishing for trout, and they go crazy for this bait. Its worth noting that depending on the species of fish, time of day or what the weathers doing, you might need to try a few different colors of Powerbait before you have any success. It’s worthwhile investing in a few different colors.

It Doesn’t Cost A Lot: Powerbait is probably the cheapest bait you can buy, a $3.50 jar can be expected to last you a significant amount of time or fishing trips, it’s definitely good value for money. In comparison, a jar of Salmon eggs will cost upwards of $5.50, however, prices, of course, vary from location to location.

There are plenty of good reasons to use Powerbait, as we’ve highlighted above, and maybe you have your own personal reasons. Perhaps it’s just what you were taught to use by whoever showed you how to fish, or perhaps you just like the color of it, there is no right or wrong reason. Feel free to comment below to let us know why you love Powerbait or why you hate it. If you’re looking to buy some Powerbait, Amazon usually has a pretty good deal on it here.

What Makes Powerbait Float?

As with anything else that doesn’t sink, Powerbait floats because it’s less dense than water, the amount of water the Powerbait displaces weighs more than the Powerbait. It’s worth bearing in mind that the weight of the line can in some circumstances cause the bait to sink, but this is normally only an issue with heavier lines. If you’re using something around the 6lb mark you should be fine. If you want your line to sink, then adding a small amount of split shot or a very small sinker should cause the bait to sink. This is a great tactic if you want to position the bait above the weed line in a lake or pond, or if you know the fish are swimming at a certain depth, you can use this to your advantage.

Smells and Attractants

I’ve used attractants and various scented sprays for a number of years now, but I’m not wholly convinced that they do much or that they’re worth the money.  Most attractant sprays work in a similar fashion, they contain a fragrance that’s supposed to be attractive to fish, and this fragrance is combined with an oil which is what’s sprayed on the bait. The biggest issue with attractant sprays is that oil doesn’t disperse well in water, it’ll either float to the top or remain stuck to whatever it was sprayed on. You’ll often see a small amount of oil sitting on the top of the water wherever your bait lands. Additionally, attractant sprays can be quite messy to apply, you need to make sure you spray it away from your clothes and other tackle and be aware of which way the wind is blowing. Powerbait works slightly differently as the smells aren’t directly combined with the oil, instead, the oil prevents the bait from drying up as well as ensuring the smell isn’t released until the dough is shaped or bitten into.

How to Rehydrate Powerbait?

If you forget or secure the lid on your Powerbait jar correctly, or if the bait is really old, you might find that the dough has become dry, flaky and unusable. If this has happened to use, you might be able to revive your bait with this quick tip. Take your old dried up Powerbait and empty it into a clear plastic ziplock bag, add some attractant oil and work and massage the oil into the Powerbait, adding more oil as required. With a few minutes of working the dough, you should find it begins to soften up and become malleable and less flaky. Continue to do this until the bait has returned to its normal consistency.

If the Powerbait is irrecoverable, it’s probably best to give it up as a lost cause and spend a few dollars to buy a fresh jar. I’ve read about other types of oil working, but truth be told I’ve never tried them. If you have a protip to save dried up Powerbait, please let us know and we’d be happy to share your tips with everyone.

If you’d like to keep your Powerbait fresh, the best way to do this is to make sure you seal the jar properly after every use. Doing this will make sure it’s usable for years to come.

Is Powerbait Toxic?

Powerbait is made from nontoxic ingredients, so it shouldn’t cause any harm to the trout. The oil used is very similar to that used in hatch fisheries all over the world. This fact may go some way to explaining why Powerbait works so well on lakes stocked with farmed fish, as the smell is very similar to what they’ve experienced through much of their life. Even though Powerbait will not cause any harm to trout or other species of fish, it can be digested and pass through their system, it doesn’t provide any nutritional benefit either.

Fish can’t survive on a Powerbait diet, they would eventually starve to death. So, if you keep any fish at home, don’t feed them Powerbait. The bait itself shouldn’t cause any harm to humans, just make sure you gut the fish as you would normally and there should be no traces of Powerbait left. I wouldn’t recommend eating it yourself either, it tastes pretty horrid, but it’s also unlikely to cause any harm in humans either.

How to Make Your Own Powerbait

Even though Powerbait is pretty inexpensive and is readily available in many tackle shops or online, you can also make your own if the urge takes you. It doesn’t cost much to do and like many things that you do yourself, it can provide a certain amount of satisfaction when you land that monster fish.

DIY Powerbait requires three main ingredients:

Scent Ingredients: these will attract the fish to the bait by providing an appetizing scent. You’ll want to make sure you use something with a strong odor, for example, cod liver oil, fish eggs, tinned fish, fish guts, worms, bugs or fish attractant. The smellier it is the better.

Visual Appeal: You’re going to want something that looks appealing to fish. You can use a range of food coloring to create striking colors or add some glitter to provide something that catches the light.
Binding Agent: This is what’s going to bind all the ingredients together, which for this recipe will be a simple dough consisting of flour, water, and eggs.


Grind two or more of the scent ingredients together to make a fine paste. This paste will make up around a third of the volume of the final dough, so use that to judge how much paste you should be making.
Start with around half an egg and some water and mix it with the scent paste. Once combined add some food coloring and glitter to the mixture, mix until well combined.

Finally, add around a tablespoon of flour to the mixture and keep on mixing, keep adding flour until a dough consistency has been produced that is capable of staying on a hook.

Use your judgment to decide whether the mixture needs more scent, glitter or coloring.

Feel free to experiment with a range of scents, colors and additives until you create the ultimate bait. I’ve managed to catch many trout with this recipe. Even though it’s not something I do often, in can be a fun experiment.

Final Thoughts

Powerbait is understandably one of the bestselling dough baits available on the market, the key to its success is its effectiveness. If you ever go out trout fishing with your waders, then your tackle box is incomplete without a few jars of the stuff. I’ve had great success with the bait over the years, especially in stocked lakes and bodies of water, it’s proven to be even more effective than other traditional baits such as salmon eggs. Given that it’s non-toxic to both humans and fish, you can safely eat any fish caught with Powerbait, just make sure you thoroughly clean and gut the fish as you would with any other catch. A jar of Powerbait will cost between three and four dollars and can last for years, depending on how often you go fishing. As the bait is so cheap, there’s no real reason not to give it a go and see what you think yourself. If you’re a big fan of Powerbait, or you hate the stuff, let us know in the comments below why that is.

The post What is Powerbait Made Of? appeared first on Crow Survival.


Friday, 24 August 2018

Rimfire vs Centerfire: Which Is Better?

The terms Rimfire and Centerfire relate to the two main primer ignition components that are most commonly used for today’s ammunition cartridges.

The biggest distinguishing factor between the two is the mechanism they use to perform their job:
The names give us an indication as to how they work. When using a Centerfire round, the pin hits the center of the cartridge which causes the primer to ignite. While when using a Rimfire round, the pin need only hit somewhere on the rim, which again will cause the primer to ignite.

Both systems have a reliable track record and have proven time and again to be effective firing mechanisms, the popularity of these methods is a testament to their effectiveness.

The purpose of this article is to provide information on these two very popular ignition systems, hopefully, you’ll have a better understanding of the pros of cons of Centerfire and Rimfire, which will allow you to make an informed decision as to which best suits your needs.

What is Rimfire and What is Centerfire?

We’ve given you the high-level overview of how these systems work, but to fully understand and appreciate which one if best, it’s a great idea to have a detailed understanding of the intricacies that make these two firing systems tick.

Rimfire ammunition is characterized by the position of the primer within the hollowed out rim of the round, hence where the name comes from. The rim is just a continuation of the cartridge base and is not a separate piece. The firing pin of the gun is positioned to strike the edge of the round, which in turn causes the primer to ignite and the round to fire.

Rimfire technology predates that of Centerfire. It is thought that Rimfire technology first made an appearance in 1845 and was initially used in .22 rounds for use in indoor sports shooting. The original incarnation of the .22 round which utilized Rimfire technology did not contain any additional powder, as such the round velocity and power was quite weak, but this also made it ideal for entertainment shooting.
Slightly more than a decade after it was first released, during the year of 1857, Rimfire rounds with additional powder first started to make an appearance. This extra power increased the rounds versatility and popularity, and the round began to dominate the ammunition market for the next 15 years. However, when Centerfire rounds where introduced in the 1870s, Rimfires dominance began to slip.

Unlike Rimfire technology, the Centerfire ammunition positions the primer in the center of the base of the cartridge. The primer itself is built as a self-contained cartridge which is completely separate from the rest of the round. As a way of an example, check out the Luger 9mm, which exemplifies the Centerfire cartridge beautifully. 

With the invention of the Centerfire primer, the power of manufactured rounds increased dramatically. This increased power allowed for larger caliber bullets to become practical and more affordable, which in turn meant that hunters and other gun enthusiasts had more options and better quality rounds available to them.
Not only did Centerfire technology allow for larger caliber rounds to be produced more easily, but it made reloading much faster. The military as you might imagine benefited from the technology, allowing soldiers to use rifles that would be more accurate at significantly larger distances as well as impart greater amounts of energy to their targets.

Rimfire vs Centerfire: What are the Differences?

In the following sections, we’ll take a closer look at the differences between the two, as well as how those differences influence the functionality, reliability, and usability of the centerfire and rimfire systems.
In order to make this analysis easier, we’re going to split this into several sub-topics such as design, reliability, and accuracy. Within each of these sections, we’ll look at how each system meets the needs of the sub-topic and whether it’s a pro or con.


The two systems approach the design in significantly different ways, these design differences are not only visual, they also influence the performance. Understanding these differences is essential in appreciating which type will best meet your needs.

First and foremost, the different design approaches influence the burn rate and efficiency. When the primer is hit on a rimfire cartridge, the powder burn rates tend to be uneven, with one side burning faster than the other. As you can probably imagine, an uneven burn can impact the amount of powder utilized during a firing which in turns affects the power output. Conversely, as a centerfire primer is located in the center of the round, the burn rate tends to be equally distributed, which means more powder is utilized and the shots are more powerful.

Additionally, as the rimfire can theoretically be struck anywhere on the rim, the metal needs to be equally thin across the whole rim structure. This creates a significant weak point across the cartridge wall as it forces the manufacturer to create a structure which is weak enough to pass the percussive force of the pin strike to the primer.

However, for a cartridge that utilizes a centerfire design, the primer is removable and it’s the only section on the round that is expected to be struck by the pin. This allows for thicker cartridge walls to be utilized, therefore more powder can be used and large bullets can be fired.

In terms of design, it’s obvious that the centerfire configuration offers advantages over a rimfire cartridge. In addition to its increased firepower and strength, a centerfire round will remain intact after firing, allowing for it to be reused or recycled.


As centerfires are somewhat modular, in that they are produced as a standalone single use primer, they tend to be more reliable when compared to rimfire rounds.

One of the biggest drawbacks of the rimfire design is that the primer bead must be built into the casing of the round, this increases the complexity of the build and can lead to manufacturing defects and misfires.
This in part explains why any application that requires reliability such as military applications, hunting or home defense will tend to use centerfire rounds. While practice applications may opt for either.


There’s an argument to make that rimfire rounds may be more accurate due to decreased recoil. Any experienced shooter will tell you that recoil can affect the accuracy of your shots, less recoil should lead to more accurate shots. Even if you’re an experienced shooter, there is a tendency to flinch when you fire a gun, especially if the recoil is significant. Follow up shots also tend to be less accurate as the recoil will pull the barrel of the gun off target, which means you may need to spend time lining up between each shot.

However, another argument can be made that the reduced power and lightweight nature of rimfire bullets can affect their accuracy over any significant distance. They might be perfectly suitable for short range practice shots, but anything over that may prove to be challenging. This is largely due to the lack of power, less powder means less explosive force which will cause bullets to experience drop off and feel the effects of wind, rain or other environmental factors sooner than faster moving heavier rounds. You can, of course, compensate for gravity and crosswinds, but that takes skill and experience.

As a rule of thumb, rimfire shots will be effective up to a maximum of 100 yards. For anything beyond 100 yards, you’ll be better of utilizing centerfire rounds to ensure accuracy levels are kept.

Reusing / Reloading

Reusing or reloading rounds is a great way to save money over the long term. With that in mind, are both rimfire and centerfire rounds reloadable?

Sadly, rimfire ammunition can’t be reused or reloaded. This is largely due to the fact that the casing rim is part of the primer, so it’ll be damaged when a shot is fired.

However, centerfires can be reused and reloaded. Due to the fact that the primer is a modular design which keeps the primer as a separate piece from the casing, the round casing can go through the firing process without suffering and damage and can, therefore, be reused.

Which Rounds to Use

If you only looking to hunt small game or target practice, then choosing rimfire rounds seems to an obvious choice, especially if you’re using .22 rounds. The rounds themselves are inexpensive and will perform perfectly adequately over small distances or for small game such as squirrels or rabbits, choosing larger calibers for this type of hunting is overkill.

So, what do you do if you’re looking hunt something a bit bigger? You can still use rimfire rounds for larger game animals, but it’s far from ideal. You’ll need to be exceptionally accurate with a less powerful rimfire round to take down a large animal such as a buck. The odds of having a successful hunt and not inflicting needless suffering on your prey is low.

In addition to the lack of power, rimfire rounds tend to be manufactured from softer metal that is designed to spread and fracture upon impact. If the prey you’re hunting has thick hide or your shot is less than perfectly accurate, the chances of taking the prey down are very low.

If you want to hunt anything larger than a rabbit, I would suggest opting for centerfire rounds. The speed, weight, stopping power and accuracy over long distances of these rounds makes them perfectly suitable for larger game animals.

How Much Do They Cost?

Rimfire rounds tend to be significantly cheaper to buy compared to higher caliber centerfire rounds. This is due to several factors such as thinner materials uses less powder for each round and less complicated manufacturing process. They are ideal for some cheap fun when you don’t need to carry out any serious shooting.

Centerfire ammunition tends to be constructed from sturdier and thicker materials are require a slightly more complicated manufacturing process. As such, centerfire rounds will cost more per cartridge for the same caliber of rounds when compared to rimfire.

Rimfire vs. Centerfire Roundup

Rimfire Rounds


  • Cheap and cheerful
  • Recoil isn’t an issue


  • Can’t be reused
  • Not accurate or well suited for long distances
  • Ideal for shooting shorter distances
  • Not available in larger calibers

Centerfire Rounds


  • Can be reused
  • Larger caliber rounds
  • Increased speed and power
  • Accurate over long distances
  • Very reliable


  • Increased power equates to larger recoil
  • Larger per cartridge cost


We hope we’ve covered everything you wanted to know about the two most popular ammunition types – rimfire and centerfire.

We think it’s clear from our findings above that for any serious shooting you’ll want to opt for a centerfire round, it boasts increased accuracy, reliability, reusable design, more powerful shots and it’s available in a very large array of calibers. If you have the means to do so, you can even reload the rounds which will save you money over time.

Centerfire rounds can be used in a range of applications, from hunting to military and self-defense to competitive shooting. It’s true that the rounds cost more than rimfire, but given that centerfire rounds can be reused and reloaded, the cost difference will be less significant over time.

Rimfire is, of course, great for shorter ranges and small game hunting. It produces significantly less recoil than centerfire rounds, so maybe superior in certain situations. However, it innately suffers from reliability issues and we wouldn’t suggest relying on it in situations where the shots must fire.
In summary, centerfire rounds are superior in almost every situation and are our number one choice

The post Rimfire vs Centerfire: Which Is Better? appeared first on Crow Survival.


Thursday, 23 August 2018

Does Fishing Line Go Bad?

If like me, you tend to prefer fishing during the warmer months without all the wind, rain, hail and snow, you might store your rods and gear away in the garage while you wait for spring to begin to warm things. Once the days are warmer, you’ll blow the dust off all your fishing gear and head out to bag yourself some Crappie. However, you might have overlooked one thing. Perhaps you head out to your favorite fishing hole, cast your line out… and suddenly you have a fish! Unfortunately, the line snaps within a few seconds and you’re left scratching your head and wondering what you did wrong. Not one to be easily put off, you try again only for the same thing to happen a couple of minutes later. At this point you know something is definitely wrong, but what’s going on?

Fishing line can become bad over time, especially if it’s not being used, stretched and being kept supple with frequent use. Just like everything else in the world, with enough time, fishing line will start to break down, lose its elasticity, and become brittle and prone to snapping.

So, how often should you replace your fishing line and what’s the average shelf life of line? We recently created a piece on the various types of fishing line that are available, so it makes sense to follow that up with an article that covers caring for your fishing line and knowing when to replace the lot. Many of the fishing lines available are relatively cheap, but some types, such as braided line cost a bit more, so knowing what line fatigue looks like and when you’re better of cutting your loses could save you time, money and gear.

As we’ve already discussed, fishing line definitely goes bad over time, but the length of time that takes depends on a lot of factors such as how often you go fishing, what environment you fish in or where you store your gear when not in use.

I tend to stop for the year at the beginning of November and then pick things up again at the start of March, depending on what the weather is doing and how busy I am with work or other projects. At this time I’ll generally just replace all the line, especially if it’s just monofilament. If I have something more expensive such as braided line, I’ll generally check it for damage and take a few feet off the end. It’s the ends that tend to experience the most abrasion and damage, so removing a few feet from the braided line gives me some confidence that the line is less likely to break. It’s worth noting, that fishing line that has been left out in direct sunlight or is subject to heat and cold will degrade faster than normal. So this is worth bearing in mind when storing gear.

What to Look Out For?

If you’d like to understand what to look out for when inspecting your fishing line, there’s a couple of easy to follow tips, depending on what sort of fishing line you’re using. It’s worth keeping in mind that any spare line you have in storage or in your tackle box can still go bad over time, it doesn’t matter if it’s not currently on a reel, so if you’re going to replace your line it’s worthwhile buying it straight from a shop.

Monofilament line tends to remember the shape it’s been stored in, so if it’s been on a reel for any length of time, it’ll loop and try to bunch up once it’s been let out. This in itself can cause a problem as the line is more likely to tangle or get caught on things. Monofilament is also the most susceptible to breakdown due to exposure to sunlight, so keeping your line on the parcel shelf in your car is a bad idea.

Fluorocarbon line is much denser than monofilament and has less of a ‘memory’, which means bunching and looping is less of a concern. You’ll still need to keep an eye out for fraying, stretching or any other sort of damage. It’s worth testing a small piece of line to see how easy it is to break, something that snaps without any stretch is likely past its best and too brittle to use.

Finally, braided line is the most resistant to wear and tear out of all the line types due to how it’s made, but it can still degrade. Keep an eye out for any obvious fraying or decolorization of the line. If it looks even a bit dodgy, then it’s probably past its best before date.

How Often Should You Replace Line?

As we’ve established above, the three different types of fishing line have their own individual weaknesses and strengths, but they are all susceptible to damage over time.

Monofilament is the most prone to fatigue and damage, but it’s also the cheapest. If you go fishing often, then it’s worthwhile changing the line once or twice a season. If you only periodically go fishing, then you can get away with changing it less frequently, but I would suggest changing it once a year at least.

Fluorocarbon is pretty tough stuff, so even with regular use, it should last at least a season. With less frequent fishing trips then there’s no reason why this couldn’t stretch to two or more seasons, just make sure to keep an eye on it and look out for signs of wear and tear. Make sure you store it somewhere sensible when not in use to maximize its durability.

Braided line will last a long time even with plenty of use. I have line that’s going into the 4th season with no obvious signs of wear and tear, and I’m confident it’ll last at least another season.

Knowing when to change fishing line largely comes down to common sense, if the line you’re using looks like it needs to be replaced, then it does. If using it is becoming a struggle, then it’s time to replace it. If you’re not confident in its abilities, then replace it. Any signs of damage are a good indication that it should be replaced.

Disposing of Old Line Safely

So, you’ve just spent the last hour replacing all of your old fishing line, and now you’re left wondering what you should do with the old stuff. Firstly, please be a responsible fisherman and don’t just dump the line in the bin. If you can, put the old line onto a spool to keep things tidy and much safer. Nearly all fishing like can be recycled, so if you’re planning to do anything else with it, put your old line into your recycling bin at home or take it to the nearest recycling center. However, if you’re the crafty type or someone in your family is, fishing line is often very useful for making bracelets, necklaces and other projects that require a thin strong line. If you’d rather keep things fishing related, you can always use your old line to practice tying knots, creating practice rigs or for anything else that doesn’t need to have guaranteed strength.

If you can’t recycle your old line, or use it for something else, your only option might be to put it out with the regular rubbish. Make sure the old line is firmly wound onto a spool and secure it in place with a knot and some tape or a rubber band to make sure it doesn’t come to lose. We don’t want our old line to end up around the neck of some wildlife, so do what you can to dispose of your line safely.


Periodically replacing your line is something you’re going to want to do in order to ensure you’re not going to end up with a snapped line and no fish, especially if just so happens to be the ‘big one’. It’s also the responsible thing to do so that you’re leaving lengths of line and hooked fish all over the place. We’ve all seen images of turtles, dolphin, seals and a range of other wildlife with life-threatening fishing line tangled around their necks or flippers, don’t be the person that’s responsible for causing these horrific injuries. Keeping a close eye on your line for fraying, color changes and damage will go a long way to making sure your line is in tip-top condition. When it’s time to replace a bad line, recycle it or put it to another use around the house, but try and avoid sending your old line to a landfill to spend the next century degrading. Following all of these steps will mean you’ll have more fun and make sure you’re doing your part in protecting the environment.

The post Does Fishing Line Go Bad? appeared first on Crow Survival.


Wednesday, 22 August 2018

7 Fantastic Small Camper Trailers with Bathrooms Included

When you’re in the thick of the wilds, sometimes you’ll need to tend to the needs of nature. Doing your business outdoors is not ideal, however, when the nearest restaurant or building is miles away, it’s your only option. Or is there another way?

I know when I bought my first camper, space was a major consideration. I wanted to have as much space as I possibly could for the essentials that I couldn’t live without. Sadly, that meant saying goodbye to the bathroom and hello to nature’s toilet. If it’s good enough for every other mammal on earth, then it’s probably good enough for me.

However, as I’ve discovered in the years since then, it’s possible to have your cake and eat it, or in this case, have your space and a toilet. I’ve put together these seven amazing examples of compact camper trailers that make room for luxurious bathrooms.

Jay Sport Trailer

If you have the Sport Trailer, you need not pay for a room in a dubiously appointed hotel ever again. Revamped for 2017, this trailer packs an amenities filled punch, with all the essentials included without any wasted space.

Looking at the trailer for the outside, it’s compact, simple and sleek design contains a ton of clever features that have been included to ensure life in the wilds is that much easier. For example:

  • Retractable entry steps
  • Stabilising jacks for added safety
  • Large grippy off-road tires

Moving onto the inside you’ll be surprised at what’s been packed inside the compact package. The interior features:

  • Lot’s of clever storage spaces
  • A rust-resistant stove suitable for indoor and outdoor use
  • A generously proportioned sink
  • Hard wearing vinyl flooring

That’s just the start of it. If it’s beautiful sunny day, just open up the roof vent with built-in mesh screening and let sunlight and nature soak in. You’ll also have access to the following:

  • Luxurious heated beds for those cold nights
  • Multifunctional cushions
  • A functional dining area
  • Audiovisual capabilities

Of course, we’re here for one reason, and that is for the bathroom. In this respect the Jay Sport does not disappoint, boasting a heater that is larger than you’d expect for a trailer of this size, coming in at a sizeable six gallons. This water tank powers the indoors and outdoors shower, as well as the toilet and sinks taps.

Casita Travel Trailers Spirit Deluxe Trailer

When you’re looking to take your small family with you on your outdoor adventures, then the Casita Trailer might just be the perfect pick. This trailer easily fits in three adults in its 17-foot length. The dining area can be quickly and easily transformed into 2 sleeping spaces and is easy enough to switch it back as required, so making this space you need shouldn’t be a problem.

This trailer has been designed from the ground up to withstand a range of climates and terrain conditions. It’s made from a reinforced fiberglass and is custom fitted for each and every Spirit Deluxe. Additional external features you’ll not want to avoid missing:

  • Exterior fitted 110-volt outlet
  • A battery pack rated for 12 volts
  • A lockable freshwater fill
  • The option of connecting to city water
  • Exterior lighting

The interior of the camper is equally impressive, with a decently sized bathroom to boot. The toilet and the shower have been separated in order to provide increased privacy, and a powerful extractor fan is in place to deal with humidity and to ensure the space is well ventilated and smell free.

If you’re looking for additional space to store your space, you’re in luck. There are several carpet lined overhead storage spaces which are perfect for stashing additional camping equipment or other bits of gear.

Barefoot Caravans

Even though this is a UK based firm, Barefoot Caravans can send it to the USA. The trailer was designed by a quartet of caravan design experts, what’s even more impressive is that they received a well-deserved trust award for their efforts.

Perhaps the most appealing aspects of this trailer are its range of customization options available to the buyer. You can choose one of six colors for a range of the trailers features, such as:

  • The mini DAB Radio
  • The curtains (you can choose to have these made to your own specs or choose one of the available options based on your fabric choices)
  • The color of the kitchen or bathroom walls
  • The seat cushions, which can be either vinyl or fabric

You can pick from the following colors:

  • Lime green
  • Gray
  • Navy Blue
  • Orange
  • Stone
  • Duck Egg

You can either choose to make sure everything compliments each other or choose to mix things up to a more ecliptic design.

So, even though Barefoot caravans feature funky designs and sleek shapes, what else about them makes them a sensible purchase? There are a tone of features which make this a standout choice, including:

  • Adaptable seating area that can be converted into a sleeping area
  • Plenty of wardrobe and cupboard space for all your belongings
  • Attractive roof lighting
  • Polycarbonate windows made from recycled materials
  • Built in fridge freezer with enough space for a small family

We should of course also talk about the bathroom. Powering the shower, toilet and sinks is a 30 liter water tank with a combi water heater from renowned manufacturer Truma. Powering this can be accomplished with either gas or electricity.

The bathroom itself comes with a range of attractive features such as full portrait mirror, ample cupboard space, a shower, sink, and toilet. When you’re on the road with this trailer, you’ll probably never want to return to your home.

Lance 1575 Travel Trailer

Lance has been producing a range of truck campers and trailers for just over half a century. Exemplifying those years of experience and dedication of their craft is the Lance 1575, which despite is reasonable weight (2,700 lbs) has still managed to cram in a ton of useful features.

Just because you’re on an adventure, it doesn’t mean you have to be without the small luxuries. Lance has made sure you’ll have all the essentials to hand:

  • Optional spare tire
  • Vented roof space
  • Cleverly designed doors
  • Ample storage space
  • Insulated and laminated windows
  • Separated freshwater and wastewater systems

When you’re on an extended road trip, it’s normally the small things which make you feel like you’re in a home away from home, to that point, Lance has done a great job of making sure that all of those small things are present.

  • A key hook
  • Integrated clock
  • Cleverly designed work surfaces and tables
  • Curtains and shades for every window
  • Integrated stove with three gas burners
  • Built in fridge that’s capable of holding enough food for a small family
  • Thermostat controls for the easy adjustment of the internal temperature

And of course, there is a bathroom present as well. Lance have included a foot operated toilet that’s both easy to use and easy to clean. The toilet is plumbed into the black tank system and does its job very well. If you like plenty of light in your bathroom, you’re in luck, with the skylight providing bucket loads of naturally occurring light. It might be small, but the bathroom has everything you’re looking for.

United Recreational Vehicles, LLC’s iCamp Elite

The Elite range is known to be sporty, eye-catching, colorful and for their compact dimensions. Even though they are small in size, they are substantial campers made from an aluminum frame, reinforced fiberglass and industrial strength Styrofoam for insulation and sound dampening. This means the campers are more than just cute looking.

The Elite is one of the smallest campers we’ve come across and is even smaller than most of the diminutive options on this roster. As the external and internal dimensions are petite, you can expect to make some concessions if you’re planning a road trip with one these beauties.

The manufacturer has had to employee some clever design designs in order to save on space and maximize what is available. As such, furniture tends to have rounded edges that just fit with little room to spare. If you’re above 6 foot, the camper might not be for you, as the highest section maxes out just shy of six feet.

  • However, despite its size, the Elite manages to pack some great features into its footprint:
  • Increased fuel economy due to better aerodynamics
  • iPod connectivity for increased entertainment. If you love podcasts like me, this might be right up your street.
  • Weather resistant outdoor and indoor furniture
  • Fully wallpapered
  • Towing it is a piece of cake

At this point you might be wondering if they managed to squeeze a bathroom in, the good news is they did. Furnished with a shower and a rather nice toilet, the bathroom has everything you’re likely to need.

Scamp 13’ Standard Trailer

Scamp has proven that great things can be wrapped in small packages. The smallest offering from Scamp measures in at a diminutive 13 feet, which is far smaller than the largest offering from the same company. Despite the size, you can still choose one of the two-floor plans and the one we’re most interested in features a bathroom as the front and center, with a fully functional shower.
Included in this layout is the following:

  • A sleeping area that converts to an eating and sitting area
  • Seats with clever storage compartments
  • An integrated gas-powered stove and sink
  • Ample closet space

Made to accommodate a small family, the Scamp utilizes intelligent design and thoughtful planning in order to best utilize all the available space. Powering the bathroom and shower is the 12-gallon holding tank.

If you’re willing to pay a little bit extra, you can buy and have the following fitted:

  • Reinforced cabinets
  • Carpeting or tough vinyl flooring
  • Additional power outlets
  • Power Converters
  • Built-in air con
  • Heat Strips
  • Exterior lighting
  • Integrated microwave

Airstream’s 2018 Sport

For nearly a century, Airstream has been producing vehicles with the traveler in mind. The latest 2018 sport exemplifies this design philosophy. The brand is so well known that nearly everyone without an interest in RVs will have heard of their vehicles.

The Sport boasts several fantastic features:

  • Air con and heating strips
  • Powerful integrated fan for maximum air circulation
  • Branded and matching dinette sets
  • Essential items such as microwave, fridge, gas-powered stove and oven
  • Sink covers that double as cutting boards
  • Full blackout window covers
  • Extreme visibility front windows
  • Built-in HD TV with sound system

Not to be outdone, the bathroom provides sophistication and class, everything is well appointed. Ventilation is provided by powerful roof fans, preventing moisture and air entering into the rest of the trailer. The toilet is made from porcelain and is easy to operate and clean. Adding the finishing touches are the retractable clothesline, the towel bar, and the custom-made shower head.

Not one to disappoint, the outside is equally well appointed. Mounted outside the trailer is the black water tank wastewater system which makes it easy to dispose of the bathroom waste. Additionally, you’ll find the following features:

  • Reinforced windows with dark tinting
  • Reflective and insulated room for increased temperature control
  • Extensive awning
  • Easily used inlet for fresh water
  • Hot and cold exterior shower
  • Hookup for cable TV


If like me you like to spend some time in the outdoors for weeks at a time, a few small luxuries can go a long way. You might be forgiven for thinking that in order to enjoy the room for multiple recipients, cooking areas, appliances and a bathroom, you’d need to invest in a large trailer.

As we’ve already demonstrated in this article, that’s not necessarily true. You can quite comfortably live, sleep, cook and shower in a camper that quite comfortably fits into a standard garage. The only prerequisite is knowing what to look for and where to find them

The post 7 Fantastic Small Camper Trailers with Bathrooms Included appeared first on Crow Survival.


Tuesday, 21 August 2018

How Much Does Travel Trailer Insurance Cost?

Trailers are a substantial investment and hence an adequate insurance coverage is a quintessential requirement. You should protect your trailer against theft, damage and other untoward developments. There is no simple or straight answer to how much does travel trailer insurance cost. The annual cost or premium can be a couple hundred dollars or you may have to pay tens of thousands. The type of trailer you own, including its size and shape, the weight and the various components it has, its value at the present point in time and the kind of coverage you want will determine the annual cost of travel trailer insurance.

Travel trailer insurance is not the same as normal auto insurance. This type of policy is specifically for your travel, the exact journey you have planned, where you are heading and for how long, what all you would have with you and the risks you or your trailer would be vulnerable to during the trip. You can embark on an online quest to know more about travel trailer insurance cost, you can speak with an expert or you can call up an insurer you have a policy with to find out if they have relevant policies for your trailer. It is usually easier and also better to check out travel trailer insurance cost online as you can completely customize your search, use all relevant filters and then get a specific quote. Telephonic conversations are often simplified and generalized. You may get a ballpark from an insurer or one of their executives but not the exact amount you would have to pay. You must also prepare to deal with a range of cost unless you get specific with all the details.

The Retail Value of Trailers

The actual value of your trailer will be a decisive factor. Utility trailers are priced anywhere between two hundred and eight thousand dollars right now. Snowmobile trailers cost around five hundred up to a hundred thousand dollars. Personal watercraft or boat trailers can cost seven hundred to five thousand dollars. Motorcycle trailers are priced from eight hundred to fifteen thousand. Horse trailers would cost around five thousand to a hundred thousand. Toy haulers are priced from six thousand to a hundred thousand. Just to give you an idea, the effective cost for a 2017 Rockwood Mini Lite 2504S is $24,500 after factoring in the taxes, fees, and title among other expenses.

There are two ways this retail price of your trailer would impact the travel trailer insurance cost. The price is basically the value of your trailer so if you happen to lose it or it is stolen, then you would be compensated accordingly by the insurer. If your trailer is stolen a year or three down the line, then you would be compensated according to the prevailing value. The value of your trailer will depreciate in a year to three years. Some insurers would offer a coverage equivalent to the then value of your trailer. Some insurers would offer you enough money to buy a similar trailer. The exact terms the policy will determine how you get compensated.

Other Influencing Factors

Trailer insurance cost will be determined by the scope of the policy and hence the coverage. Small and light trailers that are not very costly can easily be insured with an add-on in the policy you have as a homeowner or renter. You may also go for this add-on in your auto insurance policy. The most inexpensive trailers can be added on without any extra charge or an increased premium. Expensive trailers must be insured separately, especially if they are large and can increase your liability if they come unhitched and cause damage to property and injury to fellow commuters or pedestrians. You will need a comprehensive insurance policy covering theft, damage, collision, total or wreck and other mishaps. The trailer insurance cost will depend on the size including length, width, and height, the shape and design, the way you use the trailer, the frequency of use and the time it spends on the road or away from your home. These factors effectively influence the risks for the owner and hence the insurer. The insurance cost will be worked out accordingly.

The Range of Travel Trailer Insurance Cost

With over fifteen million light trailers on the roads across the country, you should expect a vast range of travel trailer insurance cost. There are many insurers too and hence there are diverse policies influencing the specific ways of calculating travel trailer insurance cost. The specific type of trailer, its purpose, and frequency of use will cause massive changes in cost. A very small and light utility trailer that is relatively inexpensive would cost nothing to insure in most cases. A costly and heavy trailer, say a toy hauler worth ninety thousand dollars, will easily cost around five hundred per year to insure.

Travel trailer insurance cost is also dependent on various options you choose. For instance, trailer insurance coverage may be applicable only when the trailer is hitched to your vehicle and not otherwise. You need to choose a policy that will provide coverage even when your trailer is stored or parked. There should be comprehensive coverage against theft, whether or not the trailer is hitched to the vehicle. Some policies will assure coverage for the personal items, affects or cargo you carry in the trailer. Some policies will not cover such goods. You need to delve into such details. Do not just be content with the travel trailer insurance cost if it is lower than what you have found in other quotes. There may be a lot of exemptions in the policy and hence the coverage may prove to be futile.

Compare Travel Trailer Insurance Costs

You will need to compare travel trailer insurance costs vis-à-vis the types of coverage. You should also be sure that the insurer is reliable and make it simple for you to file claims. Some insurers are rather rigid and unfavorable with how they go about settling claims. Let us take the aforementioned 2017 Rockwood Mini Lite 2504S worth $24,500 as a case study to compare travel trailer insurance cost.

Good Sam’s Insurance quotes an annual premium of $376 with a deductible ranging from $250 to $500. There are replacement plans but it is unclear if the insurer would value the trailer at the time of theft or damage while ascertaining the coverage. Progressive has a policy via USAA. The annual travel trailer insurance cost with Progressive ranges from $179 to $383 depending on the coverage amount. For the 2017 Rockwood Mini Lite 2504S worth $24,500, Progressive quotes $289 a year. Anyone who already has a home insurance policy or auto insurance with or via USAA would get a deduction on travel trailer insurance with Progressive or a third party insurer working through the bank.

You can get quotes from both Good Sam’s and Progressive among other insurers online and over the phone. Go online to select every relevant detail so your quote is specific to your needs. A telephonic conversation would focus on the broader aspects and the quote may be completely futile as it would not factor in the specific needs you have given the type of trailer you have, how you operate it and what purpose it serves. All insurers will have exemptions in certain policies and some apparently all-inclusive coverage. You would need to choose the types of coverage you want and the kinds you do not need. You can always exclude the latter and bring the travel trailer insurance cost down.

Always prioritize replacement cost when you choose travel trailer insurance. You need to know if you get the complete replacement cost given the coverage. You should know how this value would be calculated now, a year down the line, two years or three years in the future. You would need sufficient financial coverage if your trailer is wrecked, stolen or damaged due to some reason four years later. The replacement cost may not be much at the time as it is now so choosing a policy that secures your interest.

You should also prioritize bodily injury while choosing travel trailer insurance. You can add bodily injury to the policy for an additional cost. You can go for two hundred and fifty thousand dollars coverage or you may choose half a million. Scaling up from a quarter of a million to half a million often does not cost much but the leap can be a lifesaver in a crisis. Get roadside assistance if you want. It can cost twenty-five bucks or so more every year. It is worthwhile to have some help when you need it the most. You must also get adequate coverage for your personal effects or items.

You may consider travel trailer insurance of Farmers, Progressive, Geico or Good Sam and others. Geico is not very forthcoming with its approach online. You would not get a quote after answering a zillion questions and you would be called by their relentless salespeople. You can always get actual quotes pertaining to your needs and then compare to make an informed decision.

The post How Much Does Travel Trailer Insurance Cost? appeared first on Crow Survival.


Beat the Frost with the Best Cold Weather RVs

It sometimes feels that summer is over in a heartbeat and before we know it we’re stuck into long cold nights and short cool days. One minute we’re basking in tropical heat and then within a week we’re being battered with freezing rain and gale force winds.

Maybe I’m showing my age, but the summers seem to be getting shorter, and the winters are getting longer. December is just around the corner, the kids are getting excited for Santa and the temperature will probably continue on its downward trend with no chance of warming up anytime soon.

Common sense dictates that most of the shelf RVs are not meant for exploring the Antarctic. If you’d like to take your RV out during colder weather, you’ll probably need to invest in what’s commonly named an arctic package. These will normally upgrade the existing insulation and provide additional heating for the enjoyment of the RVs passengers and driver.

However, there are certain models of RVs that have designed and built with the colder weather in mind. These vehicles are meant to be taken out when the mercury drops, through icy gales and even in some cases, snowy roads. If you stay in an area that experiences harsh winters, or you just want to experience the thrill of being on the road with your RV year-round, then these top cold-weather RVs are made to meet that need.

Windjammer 3008W Travel Trailer


Travel trailers are a great much cheaper alternative to the full-blown RV, they are ideal choices for beginners and those just looking to get a taste of the RV lifestyle. The Windjammer is a fantastic option, it can accommodate a maximum of five beds, so there’s no excuse for not bringing your family along.
This trailer is not exactly small, boasting an 897-pound hitch load, but it will do an admirable job of keeping the bad weather on the outside and the warmth and creature comforts on the inside. Given its impressive size, it can hold a generous 45-gallon black water tank, a 75-gallon gray water tank, and a commendable 45-gallon freshwater tank.

Additionally, the trailer does a great job of providing a host of other features such as a wardrobe, linen closet, a kitchen space with microwave, gas cooker hook-up and an awning to keep the sun or snow off. To top it all off, the master suite features a clever table that folds away and a large double bed.

If you’re wondering at this point what exactly makes this trailer a good fit for winter excursions, then read on:

  • Inbuilt whole trailer insulation
  • The heated tanks that are electronically controlled and monitored
  • Upgraded windows
  • Electronically heated master bedroom mattress
  • Upgraded fireplace
  • Heated floor ducts

Pros: This trailer features a ton of traits that make it particularly well suited to cold weather. Admittedly, it’s not much to look at, but what it lacks in the looks department it more than makes up for in the functionality department. We’re sure that if you are someone that likes camping trailers and enjoy the winter months outdoors, the Windjammer will definitely become a firm favorite.

Cons: It’s a heavy trailer to haul around, more so than most other camp trailers. Given its size and weight, it might take a while to get used to using it, especially if you’re new to pulling a trailer.

Jayco Redhawk 26XD

The Jayco is a visually stunning RV that all but guarantees a snug and warm environment, doubly so if you’re looking to purchase one of latest 2017 – 2018 models. You’ll be spoilt for choice with five floorplans to pick from, meaning you’ll no doubt find something to meet your specific requirements. All models boast a robust Ford chassis, ample linen closets, a generous refrigerator, an awning, as well as a massive queen sized bed.

Every Redhawk is generously proportioned, so in addition to the above, you should have little trouble fitting in the following:

  • A queen sized bed
  • More closet space
  • A fully equipped bathroom with shower, sink, and toilet
  • An array of kitchen appliances, storage, and work surfaces
  • A large sofa
  • A 32-inch television

Obviously, the equipment and space are impressive, how about the purpose of this article, how does it fare during cold weather? The huge fuel tank, powerful auto-igniting furnace and large capacity water heater all ensure you should feel warm and comfortable no matter what the outside weather is doing. If you want to take your family, your friends family, and your dogs with you on your winter excursions, then the eight-person sleeping arrangements should be more than adequate.

Pros: There’s an awful lot to like about the Redhawk, it’s massive and feels like a holiday home, but it’s also easy to maintain a very comfortable temperature no matter what the weather outside is doing.

Cons: To achieve all of these luxury offerings you’ll need to spend a small fortune on the Redhawk, prices are just shy of $100,000. Opting for the previous years model will be cheaper but you may have to sacrifice many of the newer luxury features.

Lance 4 Seasons Travel Trailer

Manufactured specifically for all season driving, including winter and warm weather, the Lance proves that you need not spend a fortune to experience cold weather trips. Here’s a quick breakdown of its features:

  • Easily removable hatch covers, these can be added or removed in a matter of seconds depending on what the weather is doing outside. The insulated covers are designed to keep the outdoor weather conditions from encroaching into the indoors of your RV, which means happy campers.
  • The design utilizes insulation, which supersedes the more traditional wood. The good thing about this thermoplastic is that it’s a natural insulator which is adept at keeping the heat in and the cold out, it will also provide a certain amount of soundproofing, meaning you’ll be at least partially immune from the sounds of generators or other outdoor noises. Lastly, the insulation won’t rot or be prone to hosting mildew or mold, unlike wood tends to do.
  • The RV features an impressive ducted warming system. Clever engineering and design mean that the heating is equally directed across the whole of the RV, ensuring every room is warmed to the same level.
    Lastly, the windows are dual paned and tinted, which provides an additional level of insulation and soundproofing.

Pros: With bags and bags of insulation, worrying about the cold weather will be a distant memory. The added benefit of the soundproofing makes driving it an almost peaceful experience.

Cons: Nothing we can find. The Lance package is available for a range of truck trailers and toy trailers, which provides a ton of adaptability.

Forest River Arctic Wolf

The Arctic Wolf is available with six floorplans to pick from, meaning it’ll meet the requirements of nearly every RV fan. The largest models top out at a huge 10,000 pounds, equating to a hitch load of approximately 1,400 pounds. This weight is down to its generous proportions which max out at 35 feet in length and 11 feet in height.

In addition to its comfortable dimensions, Artic Wolf owners can pick from either an Extreme Weather Package or the Arctic Package for any winter excursions. Let’s take a look at each package:

Arctic Package

  • Windows for the upper bunks
  • Wired solar setup
  • Pull-out kitchen taps
  • Optional fittings for outdoor TV and shower
  • Hardwired entertainment system
  • Entry doors with friction hinges

Extreme Weather Package

  • Arctic insulation fitted throughout
  • Ducted air-con
  • Featured fast cool fan
  • Upper decking with insulation
  • Powerful ceiling fan
  • Underfloor heating
  • High gloss wall construction
  • A powerful furnace capable of outputting 35,000 BTUs in a matter of seconds

Pros: If you purchase the Arctic Wolf with the Extreme weather package, you’ll be comfortable, warm and immune from the outside weather conditions, no matter what it’s doing.

Cons: The size and mass of this RV can pose a hurdle for anyone inexperienced driving with such a large vehicle, turning, and other maneuvers may prove to be challenging.

Jayco 327CKTS Eagle

Jayco makes a second appearance on our list with the Eagle. The new model just released in 2018 includes a range of improvements and upgrades, including a sizeable refrigerator, a comfortable and luxurious queen-sized bed, massive wardrobes and a washer dryer combo.

Additionally, you’ll have a full 19 feet of outdoor warning to utilize, a well-equipped full bathroom which includes a toilet, sink, shower and closet, a kitchen with everything you might need, a large sofa and an extra recliner.

If that’s not enough to suit your needs, you can optionally choose a décor package which will make your RV feel more like a home away from home. Additionally, there are a few optional extras:

  • Double glazed tinted windows
  • The dry package, which provides LP storage and capacity
  • The Waste System
  • A digitally managed and monitored tankless water heating system

Pros: As we’ve already discussed, the Jayco name is well known in the RV industry for providing four seasons options. The upgraded 2018 model of the Eagle provides a range of comfort upgrades that rival those of your home. The capabilities and luxury appointments mean you could feasibly keep going on the trail all year round.

Cons: Only the most recent version of the Eagle feature everything detailed above, older models will cost less but won’t be as well appointed.

Heartland Bighorn

Heartland is a giant within the world of RVs and has established a reputation over the years as a firm that is more than capable of producing RVs that can go up against even the toughest of weather conditions. The Bighorn is not an exception and well deserves the hype associated with the brand. This trailer boasts close to a dozen floor plans to choose from, which means regardless of your requirement, budget or niche needs, there’s going to be a Bighorn which will tick all of your boxes.

These trailers are available in a variety of size combinations, with the largest coming in at an impressive 14,000 points, which equates to a hitching load of close to 3,000 lbs. This mass is largely due to the 45 feet in length.

Nearly every single floor plan features the following feet warming features:

  • An inbuilt A/C System with insulation
  • A heat pumping furnace that can crank out 42,000 warming BTUs
  • Floor heating ducts that move heat equally around the RV
  • The design and build feature insulation built into every aspect of the RV, including the floors, walls, roofing, and windows.
  • A heated underside
  • Enjoy a bathroom away from home with patented water lines.
  • The aesthetics provided by the fiberglass walls, laminated flooring, and tinted windows means the RV will turn heads wherever it goes.
  • If you’re looking for a comfortable night’s sleep, the Bighorn provides this in bucket loads with extra storage, large king sized bed, a mattress made from memory foam, and recessed lighting

Pros: Unfortunately we can’t cover every exciting feature of the RV in this article, best rest assured that the Heartland Bighorn delivers impressive comfort and winter capabilities that will leave you impressed. The large selection of floor plans means you’ll be hard pressed to find a combination that doesn’t meet your requirements.

Cons: We’re hard pressed to find any faults with the Bighorn, it’s a seriously impressive piece of kit.

Keystone Raptor

Another brilliant camper trailer in our list is the Raptor. As you would expect from a brand such a Keystone, you’ll receive a ton of features, including artic packages to choose from. Additionally, you may choose some optional extras.

The Raptor has a range of eight intelligently designed floor plans to pick from. All designs feature the same basic rooms, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and bedrooms, however, the exact layout and the amount of room dedicated to each room changes based on the chosen floor plan.

Providing a comfortable and warming environment is the MaxFlo air conditioning unit which can pump out an impressive 15k BTUs. This will keep you warm and toasty during even the biggest cold snaps.

Pros: If you’re looking to buy a Keystone trailer, then we think the Raptor is an obvious choice. Once you’ve chosen your ideal floor plan and you’ve cranked up the heating, you’ll have no excuse for not heading out for a winter adventure.

Cons: None that we can find. The sheer popularity of the Raptor is a testament to its capabilities.

Heartland LM Arlington

If you choose to buy Arlington with the Yeti Package equipped, you’re buying on the most capable and beloved arctic packages that are available. The package is, of course, optional, but if you’re serious about taking your RV out in cold weather conditions, it’s an obvious choice.

Coupled with the away from home package, your RV is going to remain in tip-top condition regardless of how many times you choose to take it out. Read on for some of the outstanding innovations that are available as standard:

  • A power bed with inbuilt reading and convenience lights
  • A lockable and secure safe
  • A generously equipped kitchen including an oven
  • A tiled backsplash area with gorgeous backlighting
  • Soft touch tables
  • Inbuilt USB charging ports
  • An inverter with built-in surge protection as standard
  • An ambient illumination system
  • You may optionally add the capability for an exterior TV, inbuilt dishwasher and powerful bathroom extractor fans.

In order to fit all these features in the Heartland weighs in at 15,170 lbs which equates to a 3,100 lbs hitch weight, and the ability to carry a further 2,780 lbs, this means that this vehicle is far from the smallest vehicle on our roster. The Heartland measures in at eight feet across and slightly larger than 13 feet in height.

Pros: Taking into consideration the Yeti Package, the Arlington is a seriously capable and comfortable cold weather RV. It is continually mentioned when the best four-season RVs are discussed. It’s without a doubt the premier artic packages available to buy.

Cons: Without the optional Yeti Package, the Arlington is not as capable. You’ll need to pay for the package which can make it a pricey purchase.

Northwood Arctic Fox

Very few arctic campers are as popular well know or held in such high regard as the Fox. The reason for this is simple enough, the Arctic Fox accomplishes what it was set out to do and contains a ton of helpful features. Let’s take a closer look:

  • Built into the bedroom are USB charging ports, as well as a well-proportioned mattress and carpeting throughout
  • A fully function bathtub with a skylight and foldable shower screen
  • A foot-operated toilet
  • Powerful extractor fans in the bedrooms
  • Inbuilt skylights and a sizeable fridge as well as ample storage space
  • A fully equipped kitchen including a microwave
  • A booth eating area and L shaped sofa with comfortable pillows
  • A digitally monitored and controlled thermostat for perfect heating
  • Inbuilt smoke, carbon monoxide, and LPG detectors
  • A foldaway 19-inch widescreen TV with Bluetooth connectivity and CD/DVD player
  • A range of clever storage options
  • Fully insulated through with four-seasons foam insulation, providing exceptional insulation properties

And that’s not everything! With all the features, it would be easy to mistake the interior for a luxury apartment. If you so choose, you can even add additional features such as generators, solar panels, cameras, thermal windows and much more besides.

Pros: A fantastic offering from an already impressive brand, the Arctic Fox proves that the cold weather doesn’t need to hinder your outdoor adventures. It’s entirely possible that you could be living in the lap of luxury that you’ll not want to go home.

Cons: Like anything that borders the line of luxury, you’re going to have to pay for the privilege of all of these features. The latest models from 2017 onwards will cost upwards of $56,000, and previous models don’t tend to depreciate that much, which in itself is a testament to their quality.

Keystone Montana

Perhaps the best known cold weather RV, the Montana is a legend in its own right. People have and still do live all year round in this capable vehicle. This model has a 15-year pedigree which has stood the test of time, proving year upon year that it’s at the top of the pile for all weather RVs and well deserving of its excellent reputation.

In developing and testing the Keystone Montana, technicians would use the RV in Indiana for several weeks on end during freezing temperatures to ensure the vehicle was capable of continued exposure to very low temperatures. Additionally, within the Montana testing facility, the Keystone was tested in temperatures as low as zero degrees Fahrenheit, which is far below what you’re likely to come across in the wild. Needless to say that Montana flew through every test with full marks. This is in part due to the equipment included:

  • Digitally controlled and monitored dual thermostat
  • Ducted secondary A/C
  • Powerful free-flow 15,000 BTU air conditioning
  • Heated water drains
  • Electrically heated tanks
  • Built-in water lines
  • Insulated holding tanks and dump valves
  • Insulated heated underbelly
  • Attic system with full venting
  • Insulated heated ducting system
  • A 35k BTU heating furnace with auto-igniting feature
  • Insulated roofing, flooring, walls, and windows that massively improve heat retention

Pros: If you’re looking for an RV that will stay warm on the inside no matter what the weather is doing on the outside, then you’d be hard pushed to find a better option than the Montana. The vehicle has been designed from the ground up to deliver outstanding cold weather capabilities, ensuring its occupants remain in the lap of luxury.

Cons: Top of the range options will cost quite a bit of money, which may be too much for someone starting out as an RV enthusiast.


As the saying goes ‘winter is coming’, however, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll need to migrate south with the starlings. If you want to head out into a winter wonderland, then choosing one of the ten cold weather RVs we’ve discussed will all but guarantee a comfortable trip. Some of them are larger, better equipped or costlier than others, but all are capable and will make great choices for anyone looking to spend some time exploring the winter landscape.

The post Beat the Frost with the Best Cold Weather RVs appeared first on Crow Survival.