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High fuel prices curtail RV trips – just a little

For millions of Americans, towing the vacation home or traveling around the country in an RV is a way of life, even with the high cost of fuel.

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At the pump: Filling up an RV can be a wallet-sapping event. Some models, for example, carry 90 gallons of gasoline. At today's fuel prices, it would cost $332 to fill it up.

Mario Villafuetre/PhotoLouisiana/file

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Inside the door of their 36-foot-long RV is a map that shows the route Bob and Linda Timko have pulled their "fifth wheel" – from Pennsylvania to California and back again.

With fuel prices at record levels, they allow that the trips may cover shorter distances – especially when they get 10 miles to the gallon. There will be some sacrifices for the retirees: perhaps fewer meals out, maybe working a part-time job.

But they can't imagine giving up the RV lifestyle: a sense of freedom and adventure mixed with close friendships developed over years of traveling around the country. They don't plan to turn in their wheeled home for a condo.

"I don't know how high fuel would have to go for us not to do this," says Mr. Timko. "God has created so many great places to see, and we just haven't seen them all."

For millions of Americans, towing the vacation home or traveling around the country in an RV is a way of life, even with soaring fuel prices. This time of year, for example, thousands of "snowbirds" are working their way north after spending the winter in Florida – as the Timkos are doing. By Memorial Day, many parks and campgrounds will be full of RVs. In fact, one indication that the RV crowd still considers the price of fuel secondary: Slots in campgrounds and RV parks are filling up fast.

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