My wife are I were awaken by the sound of a Harley Davidson motorcycle idling outside of our RV at 2:00am on a Saturday morning. We were boondocking along a lonely country road in the southern Idaho desert, the last spot you would expect to encounter a leather clad biker. Peeking out the window we watched him drive off the road to the far side of us, his headlight illuminating the tall sage brush. After a few minutes he came back out and headed down the road. We thought the coast was clear and crawled back into bed. Maybe he had just stopped to alleviate himself in the sagebrush I thought to myself. It wasn’t more than a couple of minutes when we heard the distant thump of the Harley returning. Peeking out the window once again we watched as he returned to the sagebrush across from us. Beams of his headlight bounced off the sagebrush as he off-roaded into the desert away from us. Soon we could no longer see his headlight or hear the sound of his engine. He had either gone beyond the range of our senses or shut off the bike. Either way there wasn’t much we could do about it, but anxiously go back to bed. After keeping an ear open for any strange sounds around the RV, I drifted back to sleep. Upon awaking the next morning and looking out the window, there was no sign of our early morning visitor. He must of driven far out into the desert away from us. Taking my morning walk, against the wishes of my wife, I hiked up the hill across from our RV trying to see how far a Harley could have possibly traveled through the thick sage and volcanic rock. Looking the way he had gone I noticed a fence with no openings. He couldn’t have gone out there I thought and concluded he must have left the area after we fell back to sleep. Funny we didn’t hear the bike. As I turned around to walk back to our camp I noticed our biker friend’s Harley parked in the sage with a tent not far away. The biker wasn’t up to no good or out to get us, he was just looking for a good place to camp. What better place than with a fellow camper nearby if help was needed. Isn’t it funny how we let stereotypes, darkness and our imagination get the best of us? Boondocking with bikers just another adventure in RVing?
Dave Helgeson’s many roles in the RV industry started before he even had a driver’s license. His grandparents and father owned an RV dealership before the term “RV” had been coined, and Dave played a pivotal role in nearly every position of an RV dealership. He and his wife Cheri launched their own RV dealership in the Pacific Northwest. The duo also spent 29 years overseeing regional RV shows. Dave has also served as President of a local chapter of the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA), worked on the board of advisors for the RV Technician Program of a local technical college, and served as a board member of the Manufactured Home and RV Association. Dave’s reputation earned him the title of “The foremost expert on boondocking,” bestowed by RV industry icon, the late Gary Bunzer (The RV Doctor). When he’s not out boondocking, you’ll find Dave in the spotlight at RV shows across the country, giving seminars about all things RVing. He and Cheri currently roam in their fifth travel trailer, with Dave doing all the service, repair and modifications to his own unit.