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Tom and Kris Camping

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With a little help from our co-host and son, Don, Tom and Kris bring you Camping and RVing entertainment, tips, tricks, hacks and laughs.

With a little help from our co-host and son, Don, Tom and Kris bring you Camping and RVing entertainment, tips, tricks, hacks and laughs.
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With a little help from our co-host and son, Don, Tom and Kris bring you Camping and RVing entertainment, tips, tricks, hacks and laughs.




RV Batteries, Electronic Sway Control, and Harvest Hosts

RV Batteries and Battery Tender Our camper is in storage when not in use, so we take the battery with us when we leave it. Now that it’s December, the camper will probably stay in storage for a good 60 days or so. What’s the best way to protect that battery when not in use? […]


A Rookie’s Guide To Festival Camping

Our daughter Kelly wrote this post about her first music festival camping experience. We had so much fun reading her story that we decided to make a podcast episode out of it. Join us as Kelly gives us her Rookie’s Guide To Festival Camping. Tom and Kris Ballard A Rookie’s Guide To Festival Camping Summer […]


5 Reasons You Need a Tent With Your RV

I know what you’re thinking. Hey Ballards, we bought an RV so we don’t have to use a tent anymore. I get that, but I can easily come up with 5 reasons you need a tent in your RV. You probably aren’t going to need it every time you camp, but you need to keep […]


Can I Keep The RV Refrigerator On While Driving?

This was one of the first questions I had when Kris and I took our new camper out for the first time. Can I keep the RV refrigerator on while driving to our destination? It seems to make sense. If you buy an RV with a 2 or 3-way refrigerator, why not turn it on […]


New Trends In Camping And RVing

Trend Number One, Don Is Back We really couldn’t discuss new trends in camping and RVing without Don. He’s been able to get quite a few camping trips in this summer. Kris and I just picked up our new camper in early August. As of this episode, we barely had our first camping trip under […]


Camping Checklist – 13 Essential Items

Do a quick Google search for camping check lists and you’ll be inundated with options. The lists are endless. Everything from clothes for each season to tools for every possible mechanical malaise will be on those lists. But not this one. Consider this a list of what we overlooked. Maybe you can learn from our […]


Camper Or Travel Trailer? Either Way, We Own It

Every part of the country has it’s own verbiage for RV’s. Popups vs tent trailers, or toter-home vs motorhome. In our case, you can call it a camper or a travel trailer. Either way, we own it. We only considered used campers when this journey started. That changed 2 years ago at the Green Bay […]


When Camping Doesn’t Look Like The Pictures

You’re all set up in your campground, tucked in for the night in your RV or tent. The kids have fallen asleep so you decide to do a little cruising on Pinterest or Instagram. And oh, those images. Why doesn’t our camping look like their camping? Nothing is out of place. No piles of overnight bags, […]


Tiny Trailers, Big 5th Wheels and Diesel Pickups

Big 5th wheels and diesel pickups is a topic that came from a listener’s question. At the heart of the question is “do we need a diesel pickup to tow a 5th wheel trailer?” The short answer is definitely no, but that doesn’t mean a diesel wouldn’t be an appropriate choice. There are many things […]


Finding Money For Camping and RVing, Repairing Camping Gear

You love to camp, and you love to travel. But finding money for camping and RVing can be as tricky as finding time. We’ll deal with finding time another day. Let’s talk about finding money. Before we start talking about finding more money for camping and RVing, we need to set a target goal. When […]


What Was Your First Piece Of Camping Gear? Get The Most From Your Cooler

Today we want to help you get the most from your cooler. Kris and I recently purchased a new cooler for our adventures. We were committed to NOT buying ice each day. These tips helped. How did we do it? We followed the directions, and added a few tricks of our own. Get The Most […]


38. Building a Future For Travel Time and Resources

Building A Future Building a future that allows more time for the things we enjoy takes time and commitment. Kris and I knew when we bought our condominium that our summer would be spent in renovation mode. Remodeling and renovating have dominated our lives, but it’s coming to an end. Our new home is in […]


37. Camping Through Chaos

What happens when life gets too hectic to camp? That’s what the camping through chaos episode is about. Don was 4 1/2 when our twin daughters were born. Our small popup would easily sleep all of us, but life was hectic. We both worked full time. We also had a brand new house that needed […]


36. The One Legged Camper, and The Jelly Bean Camper

What’s a one legged camper? It’s a descriptive term I’ve coined for the camper whose spouse is not a camping fan. I spent most of the 90s working as a car salesman. A husband or wife shopping alone was commonly called a one-legged shopper. They rarely could make a decision without their spouse. A married […]


35. Overland Trailers and RVs

Overland trailers aren’t made for RV parks. They’re made for overlanding, traveling where there’s little or no road. You could be forging a river or two, and climbing steep mountain trails. The point is to travel over unpaved, unimproved roads. I want to give a big SHOUT OUT to Dan and the guys at The […]


34. Cold Nights, Toys For Kids, Coolers

Cold Spring Nights Camping season is off and running, but the nights can still be chilly. Higher altitudes and northern parts of the country can easily see nighttime temperatures below freezing well into the summer months. Be sure to bring along extra blankets, sleeping bags and clothing to keep everyone toasty through the night Camping […]


33. National Parks, An RV That Pays For Itself

National Park Pass Programs is full of information about free and discount National Park passes. Unfortunately the website was down for maintenance when we were actually recording the podcast. National Parks and Historical Narratives If you’re taking your kids along so they can learn a history lesson, make sure you’ve talked about it before […]


32. Make Your First Camping Trip Spectacular

It may be your first camping trip of the year. It could be your first trip in your new RV. Maybe it’s your first camping trip ever. Let’s make it spectacular. This episode is inspired by you. We’ll give you our thoughts and ideas to start right. You can count on a few things on […]


31. When Is It too Cold To Camp? Camping In Bear Country

When Is It Too Cold To Camp? There are two answers for this one. First, when it’s no longer any fun. Second, when it becomes dangerous. WOW! That was quick. Now, let’s spend a little time on these. Whether you’re heading to the mountains or the beach, the cold, rain and snow can easily take […]


30. RV Bathrooms. How Much Do You Really Need?

Let’s Face it, most RV bathrooms are pretty compact. Don jokingly mentioned in a previous show about sitting on the toilet and reaching the microwave. That’s just not as far fetched as it sounds. Kris, Don and I will each give you our thoughts on this one. RV Bathroom Features To Consider Does that tiny sink […]