We started our trip May 18 spending four days traveling to Bend, Oregon with overnights in Las Vegas; Wells, Nevada; and two nights in Caldwell, Idaho. Nevada scenery is designed to put you to sleep, which it did me while Earl drove. The state’s route 93 is a straight road characterized by Joshua trees and small burgs - the kind that say entering on one side of the sign and leaving on the other.
You travel through Idaho on the interstate with lots of traffic in Boise. Oregon will keep you awake as it’s very diversified as you drive Route 20 from the border to Bend in Central Oregon. Although Eastern Oregon is called a desert, it’s much greener than the desert you drove through in Nevada. You’ll pass farms, ranches, and tiny towns.
During our initial travel, we found two campgrounds and one restaurant worth noting.
LAS VEGAS RV RESORT
This is a very well maintained campground with paved roads and sites restricted to those age 18 or older. Las Vegas RV Resort is one of 17 campgrounds nationwide to earn an all around “A” grade in the annual consumer satisfaction survey of campgrounds, RV parks, and resorts. These honors were announced by the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds. It has won this award in successive years since 2011, including 2014. Las Vegas RV Resort also has a Good Sam rating of 10/10/10.
Frank Llamas, a Workamper at this park, said, “I think our park is top rated because of what we have to offer and how we keep the park. If anyone needs assistance, they just wave us over.”
I was impressed that when we pulled up to a kiosk to register we didn’t have to leave the coach. Someone actually came up to register us. We unhooked our Jeep and were escorted to our site. The park has a 24-hour courtesy patrol.
All 390 sites have full hookups with 30/50 amps covering four different categories: standard, deluxe, premium, and extra large. Standard lots are in the back of the campground while premium sites are close to the clubhouse. The extra large are 100 feet long - similar to two sites in one. The campground can accommodate big Rvs, like our 43-foot motorhome, on their regular length sites. Picnic tables are at every site and WiFi is excellent.
Facilities include a pool and spa which are heated year round, two laundries, and three restroom areas. The pool, spa, and laundries are gated. To use them, you must obtain a key for $10 which is refunded when you check out. Security is important here with guests having a pass or they don’t get through.
A large clubhouse houses the fitness room, a lending library, big screen television, and a large lounge. Propane can be ordered from the clubhouse office for delivery to your RV on Tuesdays and Fridays. Pet owners will appreciate the two pet run areas.
They do give Good Sam discounts. However, even better is their special of $29 a night plus tax, for two people, for the deluxe and standard sites until April 30, 2016. Extra long and premium lots are $45 plus tax during this time period. They also have reasonable monthly rates where you do pay tax the first month (mandated by Clark County) and electricity for your entire stay. Visitors are allowed to come for free during the day, but it’s $2 per person, after the first two people in your RV, if they stay overnight. If you cancel, this campground does have cancellation fees.
Las Vegas RV Resort’s phone number is (866) 846-5432 and their address is 3890 South Nellis Boulevard. Their web site is http://www.lasvegasrvresort.com.
Mr. V’s FAMILY RESTAURANT
Located in Caldwell, Idaho, this family style restaurant is now run by the third generation. This dream of Morris Vavold Sr. and his son, Jim, opened in 1975. Based on the reviews and what we observed, it’s a favorite for locals.
At Mr. V’s, almost all food is made from scratch including Hollandaise sauce, the salad dressings, all but one soup, and all desserts.They are known for their cobblers. Breakfast is served all day. The wait staff is excellent with some, including the manager, having been at the restaurant for 17 years or longer.
You’ll find Mr. V’s at 407 N. 10th Avenue. Their telephone number is (208) 454-9778. Hours are Sunday through Wednesday 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and Thursday through Saturday 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Their web site is www.mrvsrestaurant.com.
AMBASSADOR RV PARK
Caldwell’s Ambassador RV Park has 189 sites with full hookups (50/30/20 amps). It features 85-foot pull thrus and wide paved streets. The short term sites are gravel, with small grassy areas next to the RV pad and concrete patios with picnic tables. Each of these sites has cable TV and very good WiFi. I was surprised that the long term pull thrus are ten feet shorter.
They have several restrooms with coded entry. They also provide a laundry, dog park, and 5,000 square foot recreation hall. The clubhouse has a fitness room, game room with pool table, kitchen with large lounge area, and a library with lending and exchange. The campground also has a pool and hot tub next to a sitting area and children’s playground. They escort campers to their sites.
Daily rates are $35 plus 8% tax. Weekly rates are $190 plus 8% tax. Monthly rates are $360 plus electricity. Daily and weekly rates are based on four occupants while monthly rates are based on two. For each additional person more than two, the monthly rate increases $2 a night. Monthly rates do not include Wireless Internet or cable though daily and weekly rates do. I was very surprised by these differences between the short term and long term rates.
Payment is required in advance for daily, weekly, or a month. Cancellation notice must be given more than 48 hours prior to your arrival or no refund is given. If you contact them within the specified time, they will provide a refund less a 20% fee.
This campground is found at 615 S. Smeed Parkway and (888) 877-8307 is the phone number. Check it out at www.g7rvresorts.com/idaho/ambassador.
Las Vegas RV Resort has a desert feeling to it.
Las Vegas RV Resort has spacious sites.
Las Vegas RV Resort's large clubhouse
The interior of Las Vegas RV Resort's clubhouse
Las Vegas RV Resort's swimming pool
Mr. V's is a great family restaurant in Caldwell, Idaho.
Ambassador RV Park's office, restrooms, and recreation hall.
Ambassador RV Park's sites have plenty of room for big Rvs and tow vehicles.
Each of Ambassador RV Park's sites is gravel with a concrete pad and grassy area.
The sitting area and children's playground at Ambassador RV Park
The pool and spa at Ambassador RV Park