rv for cold weather

Winter camping is comfy in true 4-season RVs. (Image: LiveWorkDream.com)

Most RVs are not true “four season” rigs. But the best cold weather RVs for extreme temperatures can keep you toasty warm in a freezing climate. They’re able to do that thanks to an arctic package of cold weather RV accessories. Usually obtained by the RV manufacturer, it includes extra insulation and heating components for your comfort and systems safety.

If your RV doesn’t have an arctic package package, consider renting one that does. RVShare can help you find four season RVs to rent in your local area.

The Top 10 Best Cold Weather RVs for Extreme Winter Camping

The truth about cold weather RVs is that only a select few manufacturers make these winter campers. Their four season RVs can brave below-freezing temperatures, icy winds, and snowy conditions. If you’re the type of hearty traveler who doesn’t mind inconveniently cold weather, this list of the best cold weather RVs is a must read when you’re shopping for one.

10. Windjammer 3008W Travel Trailer

Travel trailers are ideal for beginners and experienced RVers alike. The Windjammer 3008W Travel Trailer does not disappoint. With enough room for up to five campers, you can winter camp with friends and family too.

Like most extreme cold RVs, the Windjammer isn’t light. It has a 7,482-pound ship weight and an 897-pound hitch weight. But the extra pounds are there to keep you toasty. The winter camping features include:

  • Insulation across the whole trailer
  • Electronically-controlled heated holding tanks
  • Thermo-pane window upgrades
  • Heated mattress in the master bedroom area
  • Fireplace upgrade
  • Floor-ducted furnace
  • Vent cover and Maxxaire ventilation fan
  • 45-gallon black tank
  • 75-gallon grey tank
  • 45-gallon fresh water tank

Other notable features include:

  • Two slide outs
  • Master bedroom with wardrobe
  • Bed and bath linen closet
  • 44-inch dinette space
  • Oven with microwave hookups
  • Gas grill connector
  • Outdoor awning
  • Master bedroom with a 60×10 bed

Pros: This extreme cold RV has tons of great features. Don’t let the boring exterior fool you. If you love towables and four season camping, the Windjammer might be your new favorite.

Cons: Like most four season RVs, it’s one heavy trailer. It’s also quite long. Less experienced drivers may find it challenging to maneuver.

9. Jayco Redhawk 26XD Motorhome

Newer Jayco trailers like the Jayco Redhawk 26xD are some of the most beautiful around. The Redhawk model has five floor plans to choose from. All include a Ford chassis, an eight cubic-foot refrigerator, a 13-foot awning, and a walk-around queen bed. And there’s plenty of space for more, including:

  • A spacious linen closet
  • Full bathroom, including a shower, toilet, and sink
  • Galley that features a microwave, spacious kitchen countertop, ample shelving and a large sink.
  • Two-seater sofa
  • Large television

As for extreme cold weather RV features, between the 55-gallon fuel tank, six-gallon water heater, and 30-BTU auto-ignition furnace, you’ll feel toasty any time you camp in this gorgeous RV. With generous sleeping room for eight passengers, you’ll want to camp with friends or family whenever you get the chance.

Pros: What’s not to love? The Redhawk is like living in a comfortable mini apartment that goes where you do.

Cons: New Jayco Redhawk models cost $100,000 and up. If money is tight, you’ll have to go with an older model, which may not have as many luxury features.

8. Lance 4-Seasons Travel Trailer 

Lance travel trailer buyers can purchase the 4-seasons option for hard core winter camping. Certified for warm-weather and cold weather RVing, a Lance 4 Seasons Travel Trailer is an awesome choice for wintertime journeys.

  • Insulated hatch covers, which can be snapped on or off depending on how cold it is outside. The covers help prevent cold air from invading your RV, keeping you and your passengers comfy and happy.
  • Azdel insulation, which replaces wood. This thermoplastic composite insulation stops the mildew, mold, and rot that often develops when wood is exposed to wet and wintry conditions for too long. Not only that, but this insulation adds soundproofing, too!
  • A water heater bypass, which is winterized for cold-weather use.
  • A ducted heating system made by Lance manufacturers themselves. This has hold tanks that can direct flow to the whole vehicle so each room is adequately and equally warmed.
  • Dual pane insulated tinted windows that also have soundproofing qualities.

Pros: With so much insulation, you don’t have to worry about being cold ever again if you’re driving a Lance RV. The soundproofing is just icing on the cake.

Cons: None. Lance’s 4 Seasons package is also available for toy trailers and truck campers, giving you lots of versatility.

7. Forest River Arctic Wolf

With six floor plan options, the Arctic Wolf from Forest River fits the needs of most RV enthusiasts. The biggest model weighs more than 10,000 pounds, with a hitch weight of 1,452 pounds at most. These vehicles also have a max width of 35 feet and a max height of 11 feet.

Moving on to the features, you can either choose the Arctic Package of the Extreme Weather Package for your wintertime adventures. Let’s unpack them both.

Arctic Package

  • Upper bunk windows
  • Solar wiring and prep
  • A pullout kitchen faucet
  • Capabilities for an outside TV bracket and outside shower
  • A home entertainment system
  • Friction hinge entry doors
  • Dinette drawers

Extreme Weather Package

  • Upgraded arctic insulation
  • Racetrack ducted air conditioning
  • A Quick Cool Fantastic Fan
  • Insulated upper decking
  • A high-circulation ceiling fan
  • An enclosed and heated underbelly
  • Enhanced fiberglass high-gloss sidewalls
  • A furnace that can run at 35,000 BTUs

Pros: The Extreme Weather Package definitely makes the Forest River Arctic Wolf worth owning. You’ll be completely insulated and comfortable no matter how freezing cold it is outside.

Cons: The hefty weight of this vehicle may make it a challenge for some beginner RV drivers, especially when making turns, parking, and other tough maneuvers.

6. Jayco 327CKTS Eagle Fifth Wheel

Another great Jayco cold weather RV is the 327CKTS Eagle, which I’ll call Eagle for short. The latest model, new for 2018, includes a 21-cubic foot refrigerator, a 60”x80” queen bed, walk-in closets with shelving, a washer and dryer, and a TV chest.

You’ll also get a 19-foot outdoor awning, a full bathroom (with a shower, toilet, sink, and linen closet), steps, a kitchen hutch with a second sink and closet space, an L-shaped sofa, and extra recliners.

Want more? You can choose from interior décor packages that will make this RV feel just like home. There are also these optional features:

  • Dual pane frameless tinted safety glass windows
  • The Dry Camping Package, which adds extra LP capacity and storage
  • The Sani-con Turbo Waste Management System
  • The Girard Gen3 Tankless Water Heater, which includes a digital thermostat
  • A second power awning

Pros: As mentioned above, the Jayco brand is especially well-known for its four-season options. The luxury additions in the 2018 Eagle take RV living to another level. Like some of the other RVs on this list, you’ll be so comfortable you might want to stay on the road forever.

Cons: Unless you shell out several thousand dollars for the new Eagle, the above features may not be included.

5. Heartland Bighorn Fifth Wheels

This won’t be the first Heartland RV featured on this list, and for good reason. This is one of the top manufacturers of all-weather vehicles, and the Bighorn lives up to the hype. This camper trailer has nearly a dozen floorplans (yes, you read that right), so no matter your budget or space limitations, you should be able to find a Bighorn that fits your needs.

The sizing of these varies, with the biggest more than 14,000 pounds (dry weight), a hitch weight of nearly 3,000 pounds, and a length of nearly 45 feet.

Most floorplans include the following toasty features:

  • An insulated in-roof A/C duct system
  • A furnace that runs at 42,000 BTUs
  • A below-floor heating duct that’s a single piece
  • R-14 upper deck flooring insulation values, R-38 main flooring and radiant insulation values, R-34 roofing insulation values, and R-11 wall insulation values
  • An insulated, heated underbelly

With Plumb-PLEX water lines, you’ll enjoy a bathroom just like back at home. The laminated flooring, fiberglass walls, and tinted dark windows make this vehicle look sleek. Sleep better in the cozy bedroom with a pull-out storage drawer, headboard, extra storage shelves, bedroom ceiling lights, memory foam mattress and king-sized bed, and a built-in closet.

Pros: The above are just the tip of the iceberg. The level of detail and craftsmanship that Heartland put into the Bighorn is astounding. Also, the number of floor plans available will impress any RV lover.

Cons: There’s practically no way to go wrong with the Heartland Bighorn.

4. Keystone Raptor Fifth Wheel

Yet another camper trailer of note is the Keystone Raptor fifth wheel. All the same features you expect from the Keystone brand, such as a fantastic arctic package, are here. You also get some extras.

For instance, there are eight floor plans of the Raptor to choose from. You’ll get the same rooms, like the bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen, as well as handy storage space, but each is arranged somewhat differently.

The MaxFlo zone-controlled air conditioner runs at 15,000 BTUs and is one of the standout cold-weather features.

Pros: If you want a Keystone camper trailer, the Raptor is a reliable choice. With many floor plans available and plenty of heating features, you’ll spend more time out driving in the winter than ever before.

Cons: None. This is one beloved cold-weather RV option.

3. Heartland LM Arlington

The Heartland LM Arlington comes equipped with the Yeti Extreme Cold Weather Package, one of the most popular arctic packages out there. Of course, this feature is optional, but it’s not one you’re going to want to skip.

Not only that, but with home and away packages, your vehicle will be in stellar shape no matter how often you drive it. Here are some of the features that come standard with the core package:

  • A power tilt bed as well as bedroom reading lights
  • A stainless-steel oven, high-rise coffee table, and lockable safe
  • A backlit tile backsplash
  • Soft tables
  • USB ports, an 80-amp convertor, and a 1,000-watt invertor with surge protectors
  • A multi-plex lighting system

You can also add fun perks like a 40-inch exterior TV, Alumi-Guard awnings, slide room awnings, an included dishwasher, and a bathroom fan.

With a dry weight of 15,170 pounds, a hitch weight of 3,100 pounds, and a carry capacity of 2,780 pounds, this isn’t the lightest vehicle on the list. The Heartland also has an eight-foot width and a height of more than 13 feet.

Pros: The inclusion of the Yeti Extreme Cold Weather Package with the Heartland LM Arlington is by far the biggest benefit compared to the other RVs on this list. When it comes to four-season RVs, the Heartland’s Yeti package comes up again and again. It’s undoubtedly one of the best arctic packages available.

Cons: The Yeti Extreme Cold Weather Package is not included with a Heartland LM Arlington. You will have to pay extra for it, so that might make it an expensive investment.

2. Northwood Arctic Fox RVs

Few cold weather campers are as beloved as the Arctic Fox from Northwood. That’s with good reason, too: this baby is loaded with features. Let’s delve into some, shall we?

  • USB and 12-volt chargers in the bedroom, which also includes a TruRest queen mattress and bedspread as well as carpeting
  • A full tub with a retractable, hide-away shower screen enclosure and a bath skylight
  • A foot-pedal porcelain toilet
  • Fan vents in the bedroom
  • Skylights with shade in the kitchen, as well as a 10-cubic foot extra-large fridge with multiple raised panels
  • An included microwave with a range cover
  • A booth dinette and a jackknife sofa, complete with decorative throw pillows
  • A digital thermostat and second charge wizard
  • Carbon monoxide, liquefied petroleum gas, and smoke detectors
  • A 19-inch LED TV with an included DVD/CD player with Bluetooth capabilities
  • Roller bearing drawer glides
  • 15-inch aluminum wheels with included shocks for all wheels
  • Four-season foam insulation throughout; the ceiling insulation is R-18 equivalent

Phew! As you can see, you’d be living in the lap of luxury when on road trips. You can also add extras, like rear view cameras, solar panels, generators, holding tank heating pads, thermal pane windows, kitchen and bathroom fan vents, and an Alumaguard main awning.

Pros: Not only is Northwood one of the most renowned brands for cold weather RVs, but their Artic Fox doesn’t skimp at all on the luxury features. You’ll be so comfortable you might never want the road trip to end!

Cons: Like some of the other RVs on this list, for all the luxury features you’ll enjoy, you’re going to pay thousands of dollars. The 2017 and 2018 models are both priced in the $58,000 range, and older models won’t be too much cheaper.

1. Keystone Montana Fifth Wheels

The Montana luxury fifth-wheel trailer is so renowned, that a Keystone employee spent all year living in one. This vehicle has a nearly 15-year reputation of excellence and is a huge seller for Keystone.

In the experiment, the Keystone technician went to LaGrange, Indiana, where the temperatures often drop into the negatives. The technician would run the Montana’s test chamber at a freezing 0 degrees Fahrenheit. Why? Because they could. They also ran the temperature at a much more habitable 72 degrees to see if the Montana could stand up to LaGrange’s horrible cold.

Of course, the test worked. That’s because the Montana includes:

  • A dual thermostat and remote sensor with a ducted second A/C made of frame and wire
  • Free-flow air conditioning at 15k BTUs
  • Heated city water low point drains and a heated exterior convenience center
  • 12v electric tank heaters
  • In-floor water lines
  • Dump valves and holding tanks that are insulated and enclosed
  • A heated underbelly that is also insulated and enclosed
  • A fully-vented attic system
  • A foam core straight line heat duct system that’s 3”x14”
  • Auto-ignition 35,000 BTU furnace
  • Radiant technology insulated roof that’s an R-38 equivalent
  • Insulated double layer supported fiberglass sidewalls that are R-11 equivalent
  • Insulated slideout floors that are R-15 equivalent
  • An insulated main floor that’s R-21 equivalent

Pros: When it comes to staying warm inside your RV even though it’s freezing cold outside, few options are better than the Keystone Montana. This vehicle is made from figurative head to toe to withstand the cold and keep drivers and passengers comfortable.

Cons: The price of this vehicle may be a bit much for newer RV enthusiasts.

Cold Weather RVs Conclusion

Winter is coming, but that doesn’t mean your RV has to go into storage until the springtime. Instead, if you’re feeling the itch to do some cold-weather RVing, consider any of the 10 four season RVs on this list. While some are weightier and more expensive than others, all of them make a fantastic choice for RV lovers who want to spend the winters in their vehicles.

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Author Anthony Foxx

I am Tony, an RV designer and RV developer. I create bill of materials for RV manufacturers for travel trailers and fifth wheels. I worked as a freelance transportation consultant for Lyft. As an RV development consultant, I create customization trees for RV manufacturers who want to offer a solution to prospective customers to design their custom RV with variant configuration. Apart from this, I sell in Indiana trailer hitches, hitch balls, goosenecks and weight distribution systems where I provide advice to customers who want to know which is their towing capacity, which hitch ball should they utilize and how to deploy a weight distribution system. I do my best to explain all these processes and their installation, in the Lifestyle edition of Business Finance News.

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