I had my first hazmat situation this week all because of a broken sewer hookup. A few days ago, I found a list of Sixteen Free RV Parks in Texas with hook-ups and chose one to visit for a couple of days so I could dump my tanks and catch up on laundry. These “free” parks generally have a place to leave a donation and I always do.
It seems I chose the wrong park. The trip here was only a couple of hours and while remote, it was smooth. The park was easy to find and I pulled in and chose a space. I think there are seven spaces here but it’s not clear. It’s a big gravel parking lot near some other city park features like a baseball diamond and a playground. No other campers or park users were here when I arrived.
After reading all of this post you may wonder why I would admit this ever happened. Because it does happen and someday it might happen to you.
The first order of business, dump the tanks. I did walk to the other sites and look to see how the power and sewer hookups looked but none looked better than the rest. So I hooked up the flush hose and the sewer hose and pulled the valve handle to open the black tank.
I was horrified to see brown liquid was gushing out of the sewer drop. I don’t think I’ve moved that fast since I was a child. I reached to shut the valve while attempting to stay out of the mess. Now what?
This was an honor system campground in a tiny town with no attendant or host and, there was no telephone number to contact anyone. The only thing to do was to move to another site and try again. After moving upwind of the previous site I hooked up the sewer hose and released some gray water to see if the entire sewer system was malfunctioning or if it was just that site’s sewer drop.
Imagine my relief when there were no problems and I could finish emptying my tanks and get set up. In more than eight years of RVing, I’ve never had a sewer drop fail me and it was horrifying. I’m grateful I wasn’t in a crowded park. I can only assume that particular sewer drop was blocked because everything worked fine after I moved.
After getting that situation dealt with, I needed to walk Murphy. Poor guy is so patient with me when I’m setting up or breaking down camp. I got him out of the truck and we mosied over to the grassy area of the park but it was immediately clear there were goat head burrs all over. He couldn’t take a step without stopping to pull them out of his paws.
I tried taking him out later into the baseball field but it was full of them too. I can’t imagine playing ball in a place like that.
We discovered later our water hookup was leaking badly and making a rather large puddle beside the trailer.
Our tanks are empty and I’m furiously working on laundry so we can leave in the morning. Everything is getting dried on high heat because mama doesn’t have time to mess around. Tomorrow we’re off to New Mexico.
I love that the town offers this free campground but what a nightmare when you take the wrong site and end up with a broken sewer hookup. In the end, driving a little out of my way to take advantage of this park and support the little town was a mistake. Hopefully, a mistake I won’t make again.
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