Thousand Trails Thunderbird Resort
RV Parkwrite a review 26702 Ben Howard Rd.
Monroe, WA 98272
GPS: 47.8447, -121.878
|Last Price Paid:||$0|
|Number of Sites:||95|
Cell Phone Coverage
40 American Coach American Eagle 40Q
2007 Honda Odyssey
davidlgood would stay here again
“Very different experience depending on where you settle down.”
Reviewed May 22, 2017
When we first arrived it was a mad dash for all the other members checking in that day -- a mad dash to cruise the full hookup sites. The full hookup sites are on the opposite side of Ben Howard Road from the Skykomish River.
As I drove around I thought I found a site, but a man was parked in the site with his car... waiting for his wife to pull the rig in. While a bit of a bummer, it is first-come first-served as there are no specific site reservations.
Seeing no vacant sites in the full hookup section, I drove across Ben Howard Road to both of the areas that overlook the Skykomish River, as all the staff and the Park Ranger seemed to talk those areas up as being the most beautiful. My desire to have a sewer connection blinded me to what beauty there was at those sites.
It looked like partial hookup was what we were going to have to live with, until a Park Ranger pulled along side me in a golf cart and told me that some 'newbie' campers were leaving from a full hookup site -- they were just new to camping and were running late. I pulled the rig around and simply waited for them to pack up and leave, and then snagged the spot.
I was happy about getting a full hookup site at first -- since we were going to be there for a full week -- but that joy quickly faded. While I was able to level the rig well enough (not as good as I would have liked, but good enough) it was a difficult process (more so than other parks).
Most of the full hookup sites run up a bit of a hill. If you have a smaller travel trailer, I'm sure you can easily level out. If, however, you have a 40 foot diesel pusher, there is less room in the sites to move around to find a level configuration while still allowing room for your toad.
The sites were all 30 amp. Water pressure is really good.
I wasn't a huge fan of the park, right from the start, as there seemed to be a large number of annuals (permanent/seasonal folks) who, especially in this area, tend to have rigs that are a bit more run down... and there was a little bit of clutter here and there (although not much). It just didn't have the same nature/park feeling as much as it had a trailer park feeling. That aside, there are lots of trees everywhere, and plenty of visual beauty to take in. So... initial impressions aside, it worked for us.
They have a great large playground for the kids, a large group fire ring (that actually gets used), and the bathrooms were spotless, according to my wife.
I have a DISH Netowrk satellite on top of the rig, and a lot of other people had portable satellites on the ground. Depending on your site, you may be able to get a glimpse of the sky and pull in a signal. I was only able to get one satellite, limiting the channels we were able to pick up... but that didn't bother us too much, as we're not big TV watchers anyway.
The very next morning, we started to have electrical issues. I have a Progressive Industries EMS installed in the rig (one of several -- as I like backups to the system already in place). This unit measures for high and low voltage, as well as 'ground/neutral' issues and, of course, offers surge protection. Something EVERY person with an RV should have -- PERIOD!!! Our first morning I noticed that the EMS was tripping... and we were using battery power. And then it would kick back on, and the charger would start recharging the batteries... and when it quickly hit the "floating charge" stage, it would trip the EMS again. This cycle would repeat over and over. I wasn't sure what was going on, as we were only maxing out at 19-22 amps during Float Charge (and we were on a 30 amp box). After an hour, everything settled down, and I had no further issues during the day.
That night, however, the EMS started tripping again. It's hard to say when it started, exactly, as we can't really tell when we go to battery power (it's very transparent) unless I'm close enough to a battery backup system for my computer -- it will make a slight "buzz" for one second. That's when I know something has tripped and we're on battery power. I suspect this started again sometime around 5:30 PM.
The same thing happened the next morning... and during the day all was fine... but the problem picked back up later in the evening -- this time tripping when we only reached about 9 amps. By this time I had set our charger to only use 10% of available power for charging... and it would still trip the EMS. I was stumped as to what was happening.
I went outside to the power bay, and watched the remote control panel to see what was happening. That's when I realized that the EMS wasn't tripping because we were using too many amps... it was tripping because of low voltage.
It seems that as people wake up and blow-dry their hair, make coffee, and do other things to get ready for the day/work... the voltage would get so low that it would trip the EMS. And then again at night, when people were returning from work... the same thing would happen.
I walked around and it appeared that everyone in my "leg" (the leg of power I was on that is shared by other sites in the leg) were for the most part clueless as to what was going on. I feel sorry for them, as they obviously don't have a EMS installed... and I wonder what kind of damage is happening to their electronics because of poor power conditions).
In any event -- I notified the ranger. She didn't seem to think there was an issue, since "no one else reported issues." Ugggh!!!! The next day I talked with another ranger... who pretty much said the same thing. I pleaded with her to tell the maintenance staff about the low voltage in that power leg, for the sake of the people who were there and clueless about it... but she didn't really "get" what I was talking about, so I'm not really sure how well that all played out.
Either way, we decided to pick up and move -- and we found a nice end spot in the first section of partial hookups overlooking the river.
This is where my opinion of the park changes drastically.
While I always enjoy having sewer connections, we have large tanks and have no issues going a few days, or even a week, or so, without dumping... so I wasn't too concerned. I found a spot, and leveled out -- absolutely no issues leveling the rig, as the spots by the river are rather large (with large green grassy yards behind them) and plenty of space all around... and when I went to hook up the power, to my surprise, we had 30 amp and 50 amp service!! YEAH!!!! We LOVE having a full 50 amps.
We quickly hooked up the power, and I watched the EMS control panel... and it showed a reading of 117 volts on Leg 1; and 120 volts on Leg 2. PERFECT!!! We had strong, clean power -- and 50 amps of it. No more power issues to deal with.
No only that, but the view from the partial hookup river sites is MUCH better than the full hookup sites. Since they are partial hookups, they tend to NOT attract the annual crowd -- so you get less of that "trailer park" feel from your neighbors. Sure, there were some older rigs, and travel trailers, and 5th wheels, and even a teardrop or two -- but even the older ones tended to look like they were well maintained.
Had I known that 50 amp power was available from the partial hookup section to begin with, I never would have messed around with the 30 amp full hookup sites and I would have been much happier.
So... when I first arrived, I was pretty sure we'd never return again... but after having moved to the partial hookups by the river, my opinion has changed. I'd return.
Satellite reception is a no-go at the partial hookups where I was (sites 60-76) and you're unlikely to get a clear view of the sky in the second section of partial hookups if you're on the back row (sites 77-83). You 'might' have a chance of seeing over the trees in that second section, if you're backed up to the river (sites 84-98) but it's no guarantee. But that's okay, as the river view is better than watching TV anyways.
The staff here is VERY nice. Even though I don't think I made any headway asking them to look into the low-voltage issue, everyone we talked to was extremely nice and very helpful otherwise.
The small town of Monroe is just a 10 minute drive and has plenty of good eating locations, Walmart, Lowes, etc.
There is a train track that runs nearby -- so if you hate trains, you may not like this place. It doesn't run often, but it runs early and late. Trains don't bother me... and normally cars and trucks don't either... but there is something about this area that tells me that the locals LOVE their LOUD vehicles. I think they knock the tailpipes off just so they're extra noisy. And they also love loud motorcycles. HA! It's not constant non-stop... but you'll likely hear them buzzing up and down the road.
As far as internet goes... If you have AT&T, you'll likely get 1-2 bars of LTE... but that could change to "No Service" at times. It kind of bounces around -- so you'll want to have a booster if that is your only cellular option. Data speeds are decent, when you have a bar or two... but long phone conversations will almost certainly end with a disconnect, or two, since your phone will likely toggle between 1-2 bars and "No Service" multiple times.
Here are my cellular data tests:
Date: May 20, 2017
AT&T - PING (86 ms); DOWN (6.59 Mbps); UP (4.52 Mbps) - 1 bar LTE
Verizon - PING (36 ms); DOWN (26.54 Mbps); UP (30.20 Mbps) - 3 bars LTE
Sprint - PING (62 ms); DOWN (8.46 Mbps); UP (0.57 Mbps) - 1 bar LTE
T-Mobile - NOT TESTED
Park WiFi - See NOTE *
NOTE: AT&T is 1-2 bars in some areas, but can easily drop to “No Service.” Having a booster will help the signal hold up, and speeds will be better than noted above.
NOTE: The park does have WiFi, if you’re lucky enough to get close enough to the Rangers’ Station or the Office (which means you’ll need to be in the partial hookup sites along the river — Sites 60-98). While I was able to connect to the park WiFi during the day, it was moderately slow (good enough for casual web browsing, but not good enough for video streaming), and I could not seem to connect in the late evenings -- which could indicate that the internet is disconnected when the Ranger and/or Office Staff leave for the day.
This review is the opinion of a Campendium member and not of Campendium.com
25 Forest River Wildcat Maxx
2004 Dodge Ram 2500
Lil Adventures would stay here again
“Right on the Snohomish River ”
Reviewed Aug 09, 2016
This campground was easy to find and not too far from the little town of Monroe. Some cool little shops there and all the basics. The campground is split into 3 separate areas. The main campground with pool, facilities, etc. is on the inland side (and has full hookups on this side). They have two other areas on the other side of the road (river side) but no sewer in those areas.
I stayed on the river side. It's right next to the road, but traffic is minimal. Verizon coverage was great and I had a consistent 4 bars of 4G LTE with my booster. No OTA television though.
The campground is in need of maintenance. The first spot I tried had a 30 amp outlet that 1/3 of it had just disintegrated and didn't work. The next spot I tried wasn't very level at all, but I made it work (it was getting late and it had a good view). A few noisy neighbors (looks like they may be long term?) playing rap outside their rig a lot.
But finding anything in the Seattle area can be a challenge during the summer, so I'd come back!
This review is the opinion of a Campendium member and not of Campendium.com
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- 50 Amp
- 30 Amp
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- Full Hookups
- hot tub
- swimming pool: onsite
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- swimming pool: onsite
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