We first met Chuck and Betty Prather of Tucson, Ariz., over 4th of July weekend in a small forest service campground in northeast Washington state near the Canadian border.
These long-time RVers frequently split their time between their winter home in Arizona and the Pacific Northwest where Chuck worked for more than 40 years in the airline industry.
The Prathers travel in their 1996 Fleetwood Bounder 28-foot class A motorhome because, “it will fit in most USFS/BLM Campgrounds.” Their toad is a 2001 Chevy Tracker 4X4. They have added solar panels, an inverter and propane heater
Over the years they have RVed in everything from a VW camper to 38-foot motorhome. “Our RVing started in 1972 with a 1966 Ford pickup and 8-foot camper.”
During this summer’s RV trip through the Pacific Northwest, they favored camping at small forest service sites including the Alta Campground, 30 miles up the west fork of the Bitterroot River, near Darby, Mont. “Great campground with water, garbage and good restrooms,” said Chuck Prather. “We drove 20 miles on a dirt road to Horse Creek Hot Springs. What a treasure. We had it to ourselves.” The campground was $8, four for those with senior passes.
Other favorite RV destinations include: Burro Mountain Homestead, 20 miles southwest of Silver City , NM. “Wonderful mountain environment, off road trails, hiking, and wildlife.” Campo Lupita, 27 miles be!ow San Felipe, in Baja, Mexico. “Miles of beautiful beaches on Sea of Cortex. Great swimming and fishing.”
On one trip to a remote lake in northern British Columbia, Canada, Chuck was in his canoe fishing and Betty was near the motorhome reading when their dog started growling and ran under the motorhome. “Betty looked up and saw two bears charging into camp,” recalled Chuck. “Needless to say she made a hasty retreat into the motorhome.”
Photo: Chuck and Betty Prather of Tucson, Arizona, camping at Leo Lake forest service campground in northeast Washington state. (Julianne G. Crane)