AIRDRIE, ALTA. -- Southern Albertans seem to be looking forward to exploring the beauty of their backyards this summer, as interest in RV camping rises.

For Western RV Country in Airdrie, the month of May couldn’t be more different than April.

A majority of staff were laid off in the early weeks of the pandemic.

Now, nearly the entire work force has been brought back.

“Our shop can’t keep up, (our staff) are slammed from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. every night getting these trailers ready,” said Brandon Urban, operations manager. “We weren’t expecting quite a surge.”

The dealership sold 42 vehicles last week alone.

camping, alberta, airdrie, rv, recreation vehicle,

Scott McKnight of Calgary bought a brand new trailer on Saturday after he and his wife figured they would upgrade from their tent trailer.

“We are going to spend a lot more time in our camper as opposed to traveling to some other destinations we would usually go to,” he said.

They have plans to camp with their two dogs later this month on Crown land, after cancelling a summer trip to California.

McKnight believes there are many others figuring out a new way to vacation.

“I think there’s going to be a lot more people looking into camping and Alberta’s a great place to camp. Within 45 minutes of our house are the most beautiful mountains in the world.”

Amy Wong and her family frequently camp in their Airstream, as recently as last weekend.

“I think people really need a change of scenery right now,” she said.

The family’s annual trip to Norway is being held off as public health officials call for restricted non-essential travel.

She says she’s not surprised that others have hitched onto camping for adventure.

“The reason why people love camping is because you don’t have the same place every weekend you go somewhere new.”