Wednesday, May 09, 2007

RVers Keeping up with gas prices

Gas prices shot to record highs Monday, sending shock waves through local recreational vehicle parks as snowbirds flock back to Oregon's Rogue Valley at the start of the summer driving season.

"I can't think of anybody that's happy with it," said Cliff Wade, whose hat summed up his enthusiasm for his motor home lifestyle — "Life on Wheels."

The 59-year-old considers Medford his hometown but winters in Yuma, Ariz. Wade said he and other motor home operators constantly scan the Internet and check with each other to find the best prices on fuel as they cruise the interstates.

Diesel fuel, which is used in many motor homes, is $3 on average, down almost 50 cents from its historic peak last August.

Still, the high prices are hitting people in the wallet, particularly Wade, who gets about 7.8 miles per gallon on a tank of diesel that costs almost $400 to fill up.

Roger and Janice Brooks, who drove up from Parkland, Fla., said they've worked hard all their lives running an ornamental nursery business that they now operate out of their RV.

"I didn't work all my life to worry about fuel prices," said 61-year-old Brooks, who hauls 65 feet of motor home and trailer on the interstate.

Janice, who said she can keep a close eye on her business from the computer inside her RV, said, "The desire to travel has been our dream and we can't let it go."
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