Photo by Gene Orren.

Photo by Gene Orren.

Driving large RVs is a skill that can be quickly mastered, but what about backing them into tight spaces? Backing into the campsite is one of the trickiest parts of RVing.

Here are some tips for backing your motor home into a campsite.

  • Walk the site first to assure there are no obstructions or items on the ground that may be of concern. If the site is not paved, check that the ground firmness is adequate.
  • Assess which approach direction would be best if maneuvering may be an issue.
  • Assign a spotter; your spouse, sibling or even fellow camper.
  • Advise your spotter of your desired final position. (Usually such that all services are within easy reach.)
  • Ask your spotter to keep themselves visible in the mirror and to use simple understandable hand signals.
  • Instruct the spotter to direct from the outside of the turn, observing the rear and outside front of the coach.
  • Start backing up only when directed by your spotter. Stop immediately if the spotter moves out of sight.
  • When complete, do a quick walk-around prior to shutdown to verify clearances for slides, etc.

While much of the above would also apply to a truck/trailer combination, it may not be possible for the spotter to remain within mirror sight on any one side.  Therefore, the spotter must move about to observe both sides and the rear.

The driver of the tow vehicle must have some experience of backing with a trailer.  This involves slow, smooth follow-up so as not to be chasing the trailer.  Here 5th wheel units demonstrate their superior backing handling as the pivot point rotates directly over the tow unit’s rear axle.

Hopefully you handle this well.  Enjoy.