One great thing about Des Moines in addition to its cultural offerings is its proximity to rolling hills and fishing holes. It’s a great excuse to work the word “bucolic” into your vocabulary, plus it’s a great excuse to take your RV or boat out for a spin every now and then. Because the weather isn’t perfect year round (the area experiences 36 inches of snow a year), it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to take advantage of these toys for 12 months straight. During the off-season, you’re going to need a place to keep your RV or boat. If your driveway isn’t an option, or you just like the idea of keeping it somewhere that’s more secure, RV and boat storage can provide you with a great solution. Here’s what you need to know:
Space is Limited
Des Moines is growing fast. What was once a small town is turning into a world-class city. It’s our hope that the number of storage facilities will keep up with the pace, but as it stands right now, options are somewhat limited. When you’re looking for any kind of specialized storage, these options naturally become even more limited. Case in point: One of the only places out there that offers RV and boat storage is M&W Mini Storage
. Their RV and boat storage options range from 10x27 to 10x45, so you’ll want to make sure your rig can fit before you consider this option. Because this is pretty much the only game in town, it’s to your advantage to lock down a space long term if you can get one. Many RV owners do this in cities with limited storage. It may seem annoying to have to pay for a storage spot that you’re only parking in for a few months, but it’s less annoying than not having storage at all.
Think About the Seasons
Des Moines experiences some pretty drastic temperature variations throughout the year. In storage facility language, this is worst case scenario for tenants who don’t take the extra time to properly prepare RVs, boats and cars for storage. Read up on preparing your RV for winter storage
so that snow and cold temperatures don’t adversely affect your vehicle. Besides snow, storage is also affected by the 35 inches of rain that Des Moines experiences a year. There have been some pretty nasty floods in the area, so you’ll want to take a moment and review your RV or boat’s insurance policy before you park it in storage and forget about it. Some insurance policies protect against natural disasters, while others don’t. Go for the former. And be sure to ask your facility manager about how rain and snow have affected the property in the past.
The Iowa State Fair and Storage
You’ve probably heard about the epic Iowa State Fair
which brings together the national pastimes of eating deep fried Oreos and looking at goats. But did you know you can park your RV there? This is a great event for RV owners to take advantage of, so that you can truly immerse yourself in all 11 days of fun. The Iowa State Fairground
has 2,300 sites and is open for most of the year. It’s super close to downtown and offers 24 hour security and dumping stations. Getting a spot here in the off-season is easy, so if you can’t find storage right away, this can make for a relatively inexpensive option if you’re okay with living in your RV for a few months. If you’ve got your RV in storage, the proximity to the fairgrounds should give you a head start on waiting in the long, long line that’s required of folks looking to get in without reservations. Believe it or not, all 2,300 sites do fill up. If you’re looking for a permanent one, be warned that there’s a 10 year waiting list. We think the deep fried Oreos are worth it.