RV Storage at Military Installations

Editors note: This article was written by Barry Zander and is used by permission.

I’m going to step on the toes of some militarycampgrounds.us readers with this call for changes in military base policy, but maybe it will lead to needed improvement.

When we wanted to park our RV for a few months while we stayed in Southern California, we applied for storage at Camp Pendleton, the NWS at Seal Beach, the base in RV StorageLos Alamitos, March ARB, Edwards AFB, Vandenburg AFB and probably a few others – no room for us anywhere.  A year later, we were squeezed into one of the three storage lots at Beale AFB near Sacramento for a one-month stay.

That’s when we realized why the acres of Base and Post RV storage sites aren’t available.  There are cars, trucks, boats, utility trailers and RVs of every kind that haven’t been moved for years.  They sit there, often eyesores surrounded by dead grass and high weeds.  And in between the non-moving mobile vehicles are empty spaces awaiting someone to use them.

I realize that many people do use the spaces for what I consider the appropriate reason – to have a secure place to leave their RVs between weekend, vacation and extended travels.  But many, if not most, keep their rigs, including old, there for storage of personal or business items.  We have seen people putting boxes, tires, clothes and whatever inside, and taking out boxes and other items, while the tires on their coach are spread out on the concrete pad.

I can’t imagine that this is what the base designers had in mind when they set aside huge fenced areas for RV and boat storage.  And, do all base/post commanders and inspectors general think this is a good use of military resources?  I’m sure it’s a reliable stream of revenue for the base, but is that what it’s all about here?

On the other hand, I don’t really know how rampant the problem really is.  Is this just in California or do facilities in other states have the same situation?

Doesn’t it seem fair to limit the time people are allowed to keep a space so that others can avail themselves of this convenience?  Why couldn’t facilities have a reg limiting space rental for three years with a six-month period before they can rent it again?

Okay, that opens up comments like, “What about people who do use it for quick, safe access to their RVs and boats?” and “What about active duty personnel overseas or on extended tours?”

One solution would be for the custodian to keep track of when people take their rigs out.  A bit complicated, but it’s one suggestion.  Another would be to require that stored items be moved to a different spot every year, even if it were in the same storage lot.  There are probably a dozen more ideas to make this fair for people like our neighbor, who wants to park his travel trailer for a few months while he and his wife take care of their daughter going through surgery.

If you agree with me, I welcome your comments on this site or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..