When a Tree Stopped Our Motorhome


What could have happened?
At the time, this was not a fun story, however, we smile about it now, especially when we learned what caused this problem.

As I learned to drive around in a motorhome, I’ve done a few things I'm not happy about, but one that sticks in my memory was when I backed into a tree. However, I’ve seen much worse things done by others, such as driving away from a campsite without disconnecting hookups (yes, really) and leaving a campground with a slide still extended.

Lynn and I were returning home from a long trip. I checked us into an RV park we hadn't visited before. When I found our campsite, I was pleased to see that we had a nice big shade tree at the back of our site. The trunk of the tree was about 18 inches in diameter. Just beyond the tree was the back wall of a utility building that was located about 3 or 4 feet behind the campsite.

As I got the motorhome lined up to back into the campsite, I looked in my side mirrors to be sure my rig was centered properly in the campsite. I had already forgotten about the tree and it didn’t show up in my side mirrors. So, I slowly backed up while checking the side mirrors and looking down at the backup monitor on the dash. I learned a long time ago that going slow usually will reduce the severity of any damage if I were to accidently hit something.

As the motorhome was about to reach the end of the campsite it quit moving. I pressed a little more on the accelerator, but there was still no movement. Then I heard Lynn yell, “STOP!!!” I thought, “What could be happening?”, so I got out to look at what happened. When I got where I could see the problem, I could see that it was that wonderful shade tree that had brought my rig to a halt while damaging part of the rear ladder. OPPS!

Check out the photos of the damage and the fix

Now I wonder, “How could that happen?” Our motorhome had a black-and-white rearview-monitor system. I checked the rearview-monitor and found that that image was very plain. As it turned out, the monochrome picture made the back wall of the building and the tree trunk become the same shade of grey. Thus, the image of the tree trunk seemed as if it had disappeared. Now I will give you just one guess as to what the next upgrade for our motorhome would be.

I really like my new color rearview-monitor system.

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