We absolutely love our Winnebago Trend. Actually, we scream-from-the-mountain-tops love it. After full-time RVing for a little over a year, we learned so much that we became very clear on our preferred travel style and what type of RV would be best suited to it.
We learned that many National Parks have tiny campsites. Driving through some National Parks is basically driving through an entire state, and that’s a long way back at the end of the day, if you didn’t fit in one of their campsites. We also learned that we are travelers at heart who are as fulfilled by seeing the sights of the big city as we are by traveling through nature. And, it’s no fun to cut visits with friends short because the only suitable spot to drop your towable was an hour and a half outside the city.
As amazing as it was to travel in a travel trailer, we realized we were craving the smaller size and versatility of a Class C motorhome. So, like many RV owners, we decided we needed to switch RVs. Straddling the Gen X/Millennial divide, we had some familiarity with Winnebago from the MTV show “Road Rules.”
However, Winnebago re-established themselves as synonymous with RVs through their involvement in the RV community and their obvious attention to consumer feedback. That’s why we chose Winnebago, but what was it about the Trend that hooked us?
The Trend is Versatile & Great at U-Turns
At 24’4” we can park our Trend just about anywhere. On driving days, this opens up the food options beyond Cracker Barrel and truck stops. Impromptu stops at coffee shops with small parking lots are possible. We even fit in a single parking space, given there is overhang space available behind the curb or parking spot!
The Trend handles well whether adjusting to the speed of traffic on freeway on-ramps or navigating the windy climbs and descents of the Blue Ridge Mountains. We have also been able to drive through the busy streets of Miami, FL, for the holidays with no problem.
Do you know how sometimes the driving map app tells you to turn left as you are passing said turn? In a larger RV this ends with an exasperated “thanks a lot,” if not something more colorful. U-turns are either difficult or impossible in many RVs, but not with the Trend. The Trend is great at U-turns!
We have stayed on friends’ driveways and even dropped a friend off at an airport in our Trend. We do wish the Trend had higher clearance for some off-roading and for the extra hilly cities, but this is something that comes with the territory in a Class C. Overall, it’s size and drivability allows us to transition between nature and the city with ease.
The Trend Delivers on Quality & Value
If the Trend fits your style of travel and adventure, as it does ours, the Trend is an excellent choice given the exceptional value delivered at its price point. We all know that weight is a big issue when it comes to RVs. Materials need to be sturdy enough to handle the road’s bumps, but light enough to keep from adding too much weight.
The end result should be materials that while light, do not feel cheap. Everything inside of our Trend feels strong and sturdy. Doors and drawers slide open and close smoothly, and any seams inside fit and come together properly. Some options available that were included on our rig are the dual-pane acrylic windows with built-in privacy shades, the expandable solar power system, tank heating pads, and the second house battery. The feel of the materials used in the Trend, the standard features, and the upgrades offered at the Trend’s competitive price point make it an enticing RV.
The Trend’s Spacious Floorplan
We fell in love with the 23D floorplan. This floorplan is open, spacious, and airy. Natural light has always been number one for us, and the Trend allows for natural light to flood in. One of our favorite things about our old rig was a panoramic rear window that brought nature inside. The Trend has four windows along the body, two on each side. It feels as if they extend the whole length of the coach, so we don’t feel we have sacrificed on amazing nature views when we boondock. When we are working inside, the cab skylight allows even more daylight in.
The floorplan is also very customizable. There is enough space inside to eat, work, and play – even when the slide, that contains the sofa and fridge, is in. When the slide is out, a roomy front lounge emerges, that is nicely rounded out by both the driver and passenger chairs spinning around.
Additionally, there is still more room to in the rear area with the twin daybeds. If we put both tables up in the rear, we both have room to work. One of us can also set up a table and work on the sofa, but really our sofa has been claimed by our dogs, so who are we kidding. But it could still be an option for someone else.
At night, the twin daybeds convert into a large bed. At first, we were a little skeptical in regard to the bed’s comfort, but the FROLI deluxe sleep system doesn’t disappoint. The only thing on our wish list would be a pocket door, rather than a regular swinging door, leading into the bathroom.
The Trend is a Good-Lookin’ RV
Being full-time RVers, the looks of our RV is as important to us as its function. On the outside, the fact that the Trend is white with subtle graphics won us over. We feel the Trend has a very clean and modern look. We might even say the exterior looks a lot like some European RVs we have seen and liked. Additionally, Jon in particular, enjoys the “automotive” silhouette that the Trend has (this is because it has a cab skylight rather than a bunk).
On the interior, the high-gloss cabinetry gives the Trend a high-end aesthetic. The curved, high-gloss cabinet doors in the rear look sophisticated and they are also highly functional. They open with a hidden latch, a detail we love, and because they are pass-through cabinets, they are highly functional.
Another higher-end touch in the Trend is the lighting. We love good lighting and luckily the Trend has easy-to-control lighting options and the lights are bright. With the different lighting options, our Trend can go from bright to cozy and conducive to winding down when only the accent lights are lit.
Perfect for Our Adventures
We need an RV that can climb mountains, zip through urban spaces, be our mobile office, and cozily house us and our two dogs. For us, the Trend has the perfect combination of form and function. Because we spend so much time in our RV, we want to feel good in the space we’re in, so we prefer a large amount of residential finishes and a more modern feel than your typical RV. (Watch this video for a tour of our home.)
The relatively short length of the Trend allows for us to comfortably fit in both city parking lots and National Parks (which tend to have very tight campsites). The Trend has performed as expected and even exceeded expectations. It is not without two of the usual tradeoffs that come with the territory of a Class C, like limited exterior storage and limited off-road capabilities. But we’ve seen Winnebago make improvements every year (like adding a slide to the Trend in the first place). And after the great experience we’ve had, we cannot wait to see what Winnebago will come up with next.
RVing can allow you to control the weather. Well, not literally control it of course, but it sure gives you the ability to follow your perfect weather. A major discovery during our first year of RVing was that at any point during the year, the United States has 70-degree weather somewhere (for us 70ish degrees is perfect). Conversely, if winter is more your thing, we found that winter can be found at almost any point of the year, too!
As South Floridians, we found that following the weather we wanted was the greatest pro of RVing. Our home state, though renowned for being the sunshine state, has many months where you can set your watch by our afternoon thunderstorms. Humidity rises to levels that cause your clothing to cling to you like cellophane within two minutes of stepping outside. However, we have friends in places where it’s so cold that tunnels connect buildings to protect residents from the frigid temps.
Weather extremes can be unpleasant and even if you live somewhere with an even balance among all four seasons, who says that you need to experience all four every year? As an Rver, you can pick your favorite and follow it throughout the year!
7 Tips for Following Your Perfect Weather
Maybe you would like to throw on your flip flops and sit outside, under your awning, with a coffee and book in hand all year. Then again you might prefer to snuggle inside your RV with hot chocolate and fuzzy socks. Whatever your preference, here are our best tips to help you enjoy the greatest perk of RVing.
1. Head to California
It doesn’t matter when you are reading this, right now is probably a good time to head on over to Cali! There is always somewhere in California offering pleasant weather year-round. Depending on what you are looking for and the time of year, just simply adjust how far north or south you are and how close or far you are from the coast.
We personally found Napa and the Russian River Valley to have gorgeous weather during the months of June and July. If things are heating up too much, Bodega Bay and the Bay Area have cool breezes waiting for you.
2. Drive to Arizona
Much like California, Arizona has it all. It can be snowing in April, or sunny and warm in the winter, it’s all up to you. Phoenix and Tucson have winters that are the envy of many, but when the temps begin to climb, head up into the mountains and explore Flagstaff and the Coconino National Forest. The higher elevation of Flagstaff allows for cooler temperatures and a much greener landscape than what you might be thinking of when you hear Arizona.
3. Study Your Weather App
This past year, every time we visited a place we absolutely loved we saved it in our weather app. (We use the Weather Underground app along with the iOS weather app). This is helpful in making future RV travel plans.
Did you fall in love with a place, but it was just a little too cold or maybe a little too rainy? If you save the location in your app, you can track the weather after you’ve moved on and really zero in on when you’d like to return. Doing this, we’ve found that Denver isn’t as cold as one might think, Seattle and Portland not always quite as rainy, and Sonoma close to our perfect weather for much of the year.
4. Seek States with a Large Range of Elevations
We don’t tend to plan out our RV routes much. If that style of RV travel appeals to you, an easy way to ensure you have easy access to the weather you enjoy is to RV in states with varied elevation. You can head up to the mountains for cooler temperatures and back down for warmer temperatures.
In this manner you can experience multiple seasons in one day. We personally found California, Oregon, North Carolina, Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico to be particularly good states for this. If daytime temps are a little hot, but the evening is perfect, try heading for higher elevations for some outdoor fun and return to camp in the evening.
5. Follow the Wine
For those of you who are seeking temperate weather, desirable weather and optimal weather for growing grapes go hand in hand. Ideal wine producing climates are often without extreme weather events (frost in the winter and heat waves in the summers), with average temps in the 50-70 degree range.
When it comes to wine in the United States, California often comes to mind, but there are actually many more states with wine producing regions. We were most pleasantly surprised by the summer season weather in the wine regions of Oregon and Washington state, and the winter season weather of the Texas Hill country.
A region known for full-bodied wines will mean you can expect it to be warmer (think Napa and its Cabernets) and regions known for lighter bodied wines will signal cooler temps (think Oregon and its Pinot Noirs).
6. Stay Along the Shore
Not in every case, but certainly in many areas, if you stick to the coastline you will avoid weather extremes and sometimes snow. We highly recommend RVing along the shore in Florida’s panhandle during the winter. St. Andrews State Park and St. Joseph Peninsula State Park being great parks to winter at.
In the northern part of the country, we found that Seattle and Portland rarely see snow during the winter. The same holds true in San Fran and the California coast for the most part. The Outer Banks and Savannah are two more areas where staying along the shore keeps you in some pretty balmy weather. Even when it gets cold, you can often count on it being warmer than further inland.
7. Keep Your Travel Plans Flexible
Weather patterns can change from year to year, and almost every part of the country has a natural disaster that can threaten during certain seasons. So, while places like Texas and Florida are considered to have ideal temps during the winter months, they can experience sudden cold snaps and even snow.
Areas that have mild summers can be struck by heat waves. When unexpected weather strikes, if you have the ability to keep travel plans flexible and open, you can change course and drive over to warmer or cooler weather as needed.
In our first year of RV travel, we were able to outrun a heat wave, head (even more) south during unusually cold southern weather, and escape forest fires. With a little flexibility, when you’re traveling by RV, your perfect weather is often just a short drive over a state border, up a mountain, or down into a valley.