Looking at the calendar, I can’t believe that August is almost over and summer is on it’s last hurrah. My time out here at Zion National Park has been simply amazing, I’m so grateful that I had the opportunity to come out west this year. In honor of that, here’s a list of ten things I’ve enjoy about my time in southern Utah:
- Really, really, beautiful scenery
- Diversity in ecosystems, elevation, and geology
- Numerous parks and monuments to visit
- Low humidity
- No rush hour traffic, low population density, friendly locals
- Sunsets over Zion
- Complete quiet at night, clear night skies
- Being able to walk to work
- Wildlife visits
- The view from my camp site
But no place is perfect, even one so glorious as this. Really, my complaints are few. Actually there’s only really one:
- The worst WiFi I’ve ever dealt with
Don’t get me wrong, the Trading Post is a swell place to work. I like my boss, my coworkers, and the job itself, but the WiFi is the worst free WiFi I’ve ever had the misfortune to rely on, and as a full-timer who uses campground WiFi almost exclusively to get online, I’ve been on some pretty flaky networks.
When I wrote about the cheapest internet option last spring, I speculated (a premonition?) that once I got out west I might need break down and pay for a more reliable internet source. Right now, if I want to find reliable free WiFi I need to drive a good 40 minutes to get it, one of the few downsides to living in a wilder and less populated part of the country.
So what’s a curious yet uninformed full-timer to do? If you’ve been following IO since the early days you already know the answer to this question: research!
Well known full-time bloggers and technology gurus Chris and Cherie of Technomadia have just come out with a new book all about connectivity for RVers. I started reading it a week ago (not done yet, it’s 186 pages!) but can already say from the half I’ve read that it’s well worth the investment.
There’s chapters in there for cell phones and data plans, satellite, WiFi, boosters, and plenty more… and it’s all presented in an easy to understand way, even for the more technologically clueless folks like myself. There’s even a guest chapter in there from Jack Mayer, the man who first taught me about solar power for RVing and got me excited to try it myself some day.
Before I go any further, no, I have no stake in this book and do not have an affiliate agreement with Technomadia. I just think they’ve put out a ridiculously useful product which is well worth owning if you find yourself in need a better way to get online.
Whether I decide to invest in a data plan like Millenicom soon or hold out a bit longer is still up in the air, but I am now certainly less confused by the options out there and will feel more confident when it’s time to make the purchase that I’m making the correct decision for my style of RVing. For more information on The Mobile Internet Handbook, see here.
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Lastly, I’d like to clear up a little confusion for Fernley CamperForce folks. If you’re going to be working at one of the other sites, you can safely ignore this.
There have been a lot of rumors flying around on the internet that the RNO1 fulfillment center is shutting down soon, and that the CamperForce program isn’t going to start until mid November this year.
I received a voice mail on my phone just this morning from Amazon (the lady’s name was Amanda) who says CamperForce will be starting, and I quote: “early to mid October”. There was also directions for me to contact Amazon via e-mail or phone if I was still interested in the position. So I think it’s safe to say, coming from an official source and all, that early to mid October is what we can expect this year. I have heard from a second-hand source (thanks Sara!) that one Fernley camper was told to report in on September 23, but I think he’s a camper scout and not part of the main CamperForce.
As for the Fernley site shutting down soon, that is true. Wait, wait! Don’t panic. After this holiday season Amazon will be relocating to Reno proper, you can read a blurb about it here. The article goes on to say “all employees will be offered the chance to transfer to Reno, about 30 miles west of Fernley.”
No, I do not know how this change will effect the CamperForce program in NV for next year. I’ll keep an eye on the changes and as soon as I know more I’ll let you all know.