Sierra Nevada Airstreams: Owner's Guide - Participating


People are needed to do things to make sure your caravan a success. Odds are that most of these people will be volunteers. They will need to have defined tasks to accomplish and agreements where the volunteers agree to be held responsible for getting them done. There will need to be backup plans to take over in case someone becomes unable to carry through due to illness or other problem. The management and oversight of this staff is also a job that needs to be well done. The caravan staff can make or break the caravan and serving on this staff can also be one of the more rewarding experiences for the caravanners.

One part of staffing is learning about the resources and skills individual caravaners may have that they are willing to make available to the group. The manual available to every participant should include a list of these resources with information about proper use. Doctors, mechanics, veterinarians, electricians, plumbers, computer technicians, and many others may be willing to assist others in the group but the others in the group should be responsible in their utilization of these resources so that the volunteers can also enjoy the caravan and not feel like they are in a business environment.


There are four basic levels in the management hierarchy for caravans. At the top level is the boss who is responsible for the whole show. Second is the camp or event host who is in charge or a specific event or campsite. Third is the guide who supervises some specific function at an event or campsite. Fourth is the grunt who actually does the work. In smaller caravans there is a tendency to have people share jobs in both level and type. A leader should make sure that as many as possible are invited and encouraged to participate in as many positions as is reasonable as this is how people learn, gain confidence, and become more involved with the group.

Outside the management hierarchy are the gurus. These are the folks with special skills, experience, certification, or tools and equipment not readily available to everyone else. These specialists may also serve - and should also serve - in other positions but the leadership needs to know about their specialties and how to take best advantage of them. The 'general staff' serving the boss also fit into this specialist category. These include the kitty keeper and journalist who make sure the books and records of the caravan are kept properly.


The working group or team in the organization is the committee. These are function centered teams with a host or guide as the chair or leader of the team.




This committee makes sure communications are functioning. They meet and greet new members or visitors, makes sure everyone is made to feel welcome, makes sure people know about events, activities, and resources, encourages participation, and checks up on people who might be having trouble to make sure that all is well.


When people arrive at a campsite, they will be met by people, directions, and signs to direct them to their campsite and help them get their rig properly positioned and parked.


This is the committee that takes care of water and electrical needs of participants at camp if not supplied and maintained by the site itself.



When it is time to break camp, individuals need to know when it is their turn to leave and how best to exit camp in order to coordinate traffic for a smooth hassle fee departure.

Dump Crew

The dump crew may be needed to run a honey wagon or to help rigs at a dump station.


Each travel leg of the caravan needs a person that is known to be last in line. When the caboose arrives in camp, everyone else should already be there.

Positions to fill

Caravan Boss (President)

The leader of the caravan who is the final answer to any questions about what the caravan is doing, where it is going, and who is doing what. There is only one of these for the entire caravan.

Kitty Keeper (Treasurer)

Keeps track of the pooled funds in the Kitty and assists in payment as directed by the Caravan Boss, Camp Host, or Event Host. The Kitty Keeper needs to assure proper financial operations and bookkeeping practice in the caravan. There is only one of these for the entire caravan.

Journalist (Secretary)

The communications manager makes sure that there is a good record of caravan activities, meetings, decisions, and events as well as that the various forms of communications are kept operable and properly updated and current. There is usually only one of these for the entire caravan and parts of the job may be delegated. There may be additional volunteers such as a photographer or two, an amateur radio net manager, a bulletin board boss, a meeting secretary, a publicist, and so on.

Camp Host

This is the person that makes sure all goes well wherever the caravan stops for an overnight. This job is camp specific and different camps may have different hosts. The Camp Host must work closely with the Caravan Boss and will be expected to be the first to arrive at a particular overnight camping spot to make sure it is ready for the rest of the caravan.

Event Host

This is the person that coordinates with site managers at arranged tours, meals, or any other group events and special activities that need or use facilities in the care of a business or government entity.


Works at the direction of the Camp or Event Host to make sure that all caravaners are directed to the proper parking spot and know where to find what at a particular gathering. See Backing for suggestions about how to assist in parking trailer rigs.


Every caravan needs a collection of people who have been there and done that and are willing to assist others in everything from rig maintenance to proper hookup to caravan etiquette to housekeeping and cooking in the road.


These are the volunteers who fill in the holes and get the job done. The jobs are often those lacking glamor or visibility and require very little skill or knowledge but must get done.

Sierra Nevada Unit: Destinations - Education - Memories - Owners - Family - Community - Commerce - Quicksand -

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copyright 2003 Leipper Management Group. All rights reserved Please address comments or questions to Last updated 07/08/2003

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