2010 Trip 4 - A quick overnighter...

Big Rideau - June 2010

A short excursion to a cottage on the Big Rideau. Friends of ours have a little cottage here that is on the property of friends of theirs. We took the Alto down there Saturday for an overnight stay. Got a little lost on the way in, but eventually asked for directions from a couple of guys at the dump, then after a bit of a drive on a new gravel road, finally arrived. Just set the Alto up beside the cottage, plugged it in and we were all set up. Had a visit in the afternoon, fired up the Q and had some excellent rib steaks and more visiting. 

Got up in the morning, coffee and a light breakfast, then went for a cruise around the lake in their awesome Boston Whaler boat...one of my favorite boat designs.  Moored near the govt dock at Long Island and went for a swim. Water was not bad at all...once you got used to it! Got home around 3:00 and gave the Alto a quick scrub as it was pretty dirty from the roads. A quick relaxing weekend.

2010 Trip 3: Old Stomping Grounds

Bonnechere Provincial Park -  June 2010

Headed out late Friday, traffic pretty heavy as it is rush hour and everyone is probably eager to start the weekend. Weather for the weekend calls for it to be rain, but we are going regardless, and will deal with what appears. It's not difficult to head out when the weather is fine, if it was really pouring Friday afternoon, then one may tend to think twice. Trip was about 2.5 hours, along very familiar roads. It was almost like being on autopilot. Arrived around 7:30pm. Really nice PP, big sites, reasonable space and privacy between. Our site is excellent, nothing on 3 sides of us and a single neighbour on the right.  Nice deep site so we backed the Alto in quite a bit.

A little extra engineering

We decided to beef up the centre of the bench frame by adding a square tube cross brace. When pulling across the curtains, there is weight put right in the centre of the bench, quite often. So we put in the cross brace. Over engineering yes...why...because I can.


One thing we noticed was that bins placed in the storage areas under the bench seats, while on the road, had a tendency to wander to the back of the trailer, under the fold down rear bench.  To prevent this, I added some angle aluminum, riveted to the vertical risers, stopping any of the storage bins from getting back under the rear bench.  Other than the contortions to work in that space, a pretty easy mod.

A bunch of little projects

I added  number of zip ties to the wiring harnesses throughout the Alto...not that there was a problem, but I guess I just prefer it all to be a little more organized.

I found the original hole in the weight distribution hitch bar caused the ball to sit quite far from the bumper. As it is optimum to have the ball as close as possible to the vehicle, the new hole allowed it to be about 2 inches closer.

Our optional external shower had a hose that was too short and very stiff. We got a longer and more flexible extension. Seems they are a universal fit.

We found the screen was always coming off on one side. I changed the velcro to a stronger industrial version, but this only improved it slightly. The reason it is happening at all is that the screen is kinda twisted...I suspect a function of how it was formed into shape. I used nylon cable retainers, upside down to hold the screen in place. as per the photo. works great, and an easy fix.

We doubled up all the existing pieces of coroplast in the trailer. As a single layer they are no that strong, especially when cloths or food storage bins are pressing up against them. For the cost of a 4x8 sheet of coroplast ($10 bucks) we glued an extra layer to everything, and had lots left over for all sorts of other uses. No weight cost either.