End of an era

Hi folks,

As many of you may have noticed, there hasn’t been a new podcast in quite a while, over 3 years to be exact. You may have also noticed the podcast doesn’t probably show up in any feeds anymore. I was going to record a podcast about the podcast, but since I was removing the feed that wouldn’t make much sense. So, I figured this website was the next place people would visit.

First off, I want to thank all of you for the downloads, support, and kind words over the years. Like I may have said a few times on the podcast, this particular one – and I’ve done a few – was probably my most rewarding. It really started as an afterthought, one that wouldn’t be as scripted as others I’d done, just a casual conversational thing. I didn’t really push it too hard with really any promotion but it grew faster and larger than any other podcast I’d done – ones that I did push and advertise. And I owe that all to you, so again thank you.

Why it stopped: Just to be clear, nothing bad has occurred to bring on the end of the podcast. I had talked a few times about buying some land and having a spot for my RV. Within days of my last podcast recording we did just that. Anyone who’s ever bought land and designed their own house would probably tell you what an involved process that is, pretty much all consuming.

Then COVID happened.

We had not only planned but also booked and paid for several camping trips starting in March-April of 2020. In late March I was sent home from my job and told I could be recalled at any time, that there was no telling what was going to happen, etc, you know the drill. I had only 8 months to retirement, and while I was still being paid, it was a time in “limbo” so to speak. I didn’t feel right going on vacations and “taking advantage” of this paid leave – as others did in the same situation. Going camping was included in vacations, as my trips are fairly public (this podcast and its YouTube channel). Most campgrounds and state parks were closed anyway, but even if they were open, it would feel weird towing my trailer through areas that were shut down in one form or another. Circling back to my job: my career had been very good to me, I was always going to be ready to go back at a moments notice. But that call never came and I transitioned into retirement.

Around the same time, my Facebook account was hacked by someone who really went to a lot of effort to steal it. That meant I lost control of the In The Field Camping Facebook page, it’s probably been deleted by now. We did most of our communicating on that page, most of the updates were done by my wife. I tried to get it back but Facebook was of no help, and I was sick of Facebook by that time and didn’t mind letting it go.

COVID, as you can probably guess, did a real number on our build process. I can easily say we picked probably the worst time in history to build a house. Prices skyrocketed, timelines weren’t even close to being met, and we had several people attached to the project die, or get close to it (some due to COVID, some not). It was a busy time, with selling our house and moving into an apartment (longer than we had planned due to the above), everything involved with building a complicated custom home, having my parents move to be near us, and the list goes on, but camping wasn’t something we were doing – and you know my motto, “if we’re not camping, we’re not recording”, well we weren’t, so we weren’t.

Then when the camping floodgates opened up, and record numbers of people were buying RV’s and using them, camping got less attractive to us. I go camping to get away from civilization – not be surrounded by it. With new users comes fairly inconsiderate ones, I’ve talked about these types among camping nightmares, etc. But it was mostly because we were living in an apartment and just loading up the trailer for a trip was a hassle, so it sat, winterized, and sat.

So, when all was said and done with our house, we didn’t get the RV garage we wanted – was just way too expensive, in size it overwhelmed the rest of the house design, and other things were just more important. Our trailer though does have a nice place to park on our property.

Over the last 3+ years we still do occasionally watch RV related videos on YouTube, and you should give them all some views to help them out. We’ve watched some come and go, and evolve – it’s not easy delivering consistent interesting, entertaining, and relevant content. Viewers come and go as their interests change, I know this as a creator and viewer. It’s not difficult to see when a creator is getting burned out or running out of things to cover.

I’m not saying I got burnt out, but I’m not usually the type to wear out my welcome and I usually move on from a project before I get burnt out, and have no problem letting my contemporaries pick up the slack. My ego doesn’t require me to be fighting to be at the top of the heap, or even near the top.

I’m also not sure of the long term popularity of podcasts. I may just be saying that because I don’t listen to them anymore. But the popularity of YouTube and TikTok, and the ever shortening attention span of the general public isn’t a place for the more conversational style that I had and didn’t feel like changing. I’m sure talk radio is still somewhat popular, but that’s another thing I don’t regularly listen to anymore. My way of thinking has always been: if I don’t like it, or I don’t listen/watch it, why would anyone else, so why bother.

Either way, it was fun and rewarding to do this podcast. I think I only got one negative comment, which is odd for the amount of downloads I received. I tried as much as I could to be as unscripted as possible, which always lead to the possibility of rambling or repeating myself – which I cannot stand. But I leave you all in good hands with all the other fine creators involved in camping, RV’ing, etc.

And again, I thank you for all the support and kind words over the years.

Happy Camping!