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What To Do When It Storms at Your Campsite

September 7, 2014 by · 4 Comments 

What To Do When It Storms at Your Campsite

You’re­ on what you ho­pe­ will be a leisurely RV camping­ trip. It’s a warm summer afternoon. Suddenly, a few raindrops splat your arms, and before you know it, the sky opens up. Then you hear thunder in the distance. What should you do to ensure your family’s safety? Following heavy rains in the mountains a wash separating the campground from the entrance road at Catalina State Park near Tucson flooded stranding campers for several days. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved Stormy weather can happen at any time, anywhere. While yo­ur best choice depends on the severity of the storm and your location, being prepared to act quickly could be a matter of survival. Knowing what to do before, during, and following severe weather is a critical part of being prepared and may make all the difference when seconds count. Be Informed Know the risk in your area for hurricanes, tornados, thunderstorms, damaging winds, dust storms, blizzards, ice storms, and other severe weather phenomena. NOAA... [Read more...]

Visit Paso Robles Wine Country

September 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Visit Paso Robles Wine Country

Harvest time in Paso Robles Wine Country is almost upon us! This is an exciting time shared by winemakers, growers, tasters and wine enthusiasts alike that celebrates another successful year of hard work and dedication. To commemorate this time of year, Paso Robles is hosting their 2014 Harvest Wine Weekend from October 17-19, 2014. More than 130 wineries will host a variety of activities during this three day event, which includes favorites such as dinners, tastings, ceremonial grape stomps, live music and much more! As Wine Enthusiast’s Wine Region of the Year, the Paso Robles wine region is sure to offer your taste buds a real treat this year. Remember the 4 S’s during your tastings – this is a great method to identify the different components that make each wine unique. The 4 S’s method can vary depending on the expert you’re conversing with, but for this festival, the following is recommended: Swirl – this releases the aromatics of the wine so different scents can be more... [Read more...]

Camping In Different Climates

August 28, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Camping In Different Climates

  High deserts are known for causing dehydration, sunburn, sunstroke, and dry skin. Drink plenty of water and apply sunscreen. Pictured above Arches National Park. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved RV camping styles and activities vary with location and climate. Climate is a key factor in the planning and enjoyment of a camping trip. Research the location to be aware of the type of climate and weather you’re likely to experience. Desert Camping Desert camping can be a unique and rewarding experience. The stark beauty of red rock mesas and mysterious hoodoos in the Southwest is enchanting. But the harsh climate and terrain that defines a desert requires certain precautions and special considerations especially during the summer months. Drink large amounts of water. By the time you feel thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. Arid climates require one gallon of water, per person, per day—minimum. Sun and heat are related factors to watch. Wear sunscreen, and reapply often. Sun-glasses... [Read more...]

Explore Tennessee

August 18, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Explore Tennessee

Where the Grand Ole Opry began in 1943 In Tennessee, there is just about as much to explore under the ground as there is above it. The Volunteer State is home to more than 8,500 caves -more than any other state. One Tennessean who made good use of those caves was Jack Daniel, who used pure, iron-free cave water chilled by nature to a constant 56 degrees to make his finest “Tennessee sippin’ whiskey.” When you visit the Jack Daniel Distillery No 1 in Lynchburg, you will find a statue of the man himself standing watch over his treasured cave spring. Any Jack Daniel’s whiskey you take home will have to age a bit longer before consumption, however, since the distillery is in a dry county. Even without spelunking gear, you can explore Tennessee underground in more than two dozen caves. That includes Appalachian Caverns that served as a hospital during the Civil War and the Lost Sea in Sweetwater where tours are by boat on America’s largest underground lake. Above... [Read more...]

Explore South Carolina

August 18, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Explore South Carolina

Raven Cliffs Falls tumbles off Upcountry escarpment For first-time vacationers to South Carolina, the state is bursting with surprises. Starting with its size – South Carolina is one of the ten smallest states and the entire Palmetto State isn’t beyond much of a three-hour drive. That means a day trip to the mountainous Upcountry from your favorite RV park in the Lowcountry is a comfortable possibility.  You can easily explore South Carolina by taking a trip to Folly Beach, Edisto Beach or Hunting Island from your best lakeside campsite in the Upcountry. South Carolina has its own bonafide national park – something most of its Southern neighbors can’t claim. Congaree National Park is a world of languid blackwater rivers and protects the largest contiguous old growth bottomland of loblolly pines, tupelo and bald cypress in the United States. Natural wonders extend beyond the swamps; Whitewater Falls is the highest waterfall east of the Mississippi River. It’s... [Read more...]

Ingredients for a Great Campfire

August 16, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Ingredients for a Great Campfire

There is nothing that makes a night of camping more ideal than the perfect campfire. But there are requirements to creating the perfect campfire and the ideal fire environment. First of all, you must have the appropriate area. In most campgrounds or RV parks, there are campfire rings in which you build your fire. If you are in a natural area, be sure you have a cleared area, ideally bare ground, on which to build your creation. The other essentials are simple: 1)     Firewood, preferably dry—It is possible to get wet or damp firewood to burn with the right combination of kindling, matches, newspaper and luck, but it can be difficult. A perfect campfire requires dry firewood. In much of the country, our best campfires were made from dry maple or oak. In the southwest, the best campfires are made with dry fir and ponderosa pine, with a fine bit of pinon pine to add the perfect campfire (or fireplace or woodstove) smell. Delicious! When building your fire, you will form a teepee with... [Read more...]

RVing to Mount Rushmore

August 14, 2014 by · 7 Comments 

RVing to Mount Rushmore

Mount Rushmore entrance Several years ago, we traveled to Mount Rushmore on one of our extended summer RV trips. It was a memorable experience for all, including our two teen-aged children, who were 13 and 14 at the time. Our ultimate destination was Yellowstone National Park, but we made a point to stop and spend a night in South Dakota on the way so that we could visit Mount Rushmore. As we neared our destination, we headed into Custer State Park and enjoyed a lovely picnic lunch at a picnic site along the Park road. While RVing to Mount Rushmore, we drove through the meandering roads in the park and encountered burros, bison and three elk! Now the kids were paying attention. We settled in for the night, eagerly anticipating our visit to the Mount Rushmore monument the next day. The next morning, bright and early, found us heading into the monument as soon as it opened. Immediately we were impressed by the grand entrance as we walked under the stone archway and down the aisle of flags... [Read more...]

Explore Virginia

August 11, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Explore Virginia

The Governor’s Palace at Williamsburg American history in Virginia goes back over 400 years, and when exploring the Old Dominion, the rich layers of that experience naturally seep into one another. So, when soaking in the majesty of the Shenandoah Mountains, you will bump into the Civil War legacies of Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson for the Confederacy and Philip Sheridan for the Union Army. When exploring the Great Dismal Swamp National Refuge, you will learn that George Washington was there long before you, surveying on one his first jobs. The Natural Bridge that was one of early America’s “Seven Natural Wonders” is on land once owned by Thomas Jefferson. Another of Virginia’s natural marvels, the Great Falls of the Potomac and Mather Gorge, is accessed by the historic towpath of the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal that was one of the country’s first great public works projects. When you want to meander through Virginia’s quaint small towns,... [Read more...]

Explore Colorado

August 4, 2014 by · 1 Comment 

Explore Colorado

Red Rock Formations at the Garden of the Gods Most folks traveling from the east in the 1800s ended up at the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado – unless they were hunting gold or trying to make it to the West Coast.  Because of this, the range’s prominent craggy heights, Pikes Peak, became the most famous and most visited mountain in America. English professor Katharine Lee Bates was so moved upon visiting Pikes Peak in the 1890s that she wrote “America the Beautiful.” The Rocky Mountains are indeed a formidable travel obstacle; Pikes Peak is one of 53 mountains that stand taller than 14,000 feet. The lowest point in Colorado is higher than the highest point in 18 states. When Route 66 -the Mother Road- was being planned from Chicago to Los Angeles, it rolled due south away from Lake Michigan so motorists could avoid the Colorado highlands altogether. Today, RVers can explore Colorado and poke into all the corners of the Centennial State – founded... [Read more...]

RV Resorts in the Great Lakes Region

August 2, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

The Great Lakes region is as distinct as it is magical; a unique area that you have to experience to truly understand. Rich in nautical history and natural beauty, there is always something new to discover and enjoy along the vast coastlines of the Great Lakes – the perfect playground for any age. Spend a day at one of the countless beaches where the family can play in the golden sands or swim in the cool blue depths of these freshwater lakes. Cast your line out for some of the best freshwater fishing ever and hook native species like lake trout, salmon, walleye, perch, smallmouth bass and steelhead. Visit quaint coastal towns where you can enjoy gorgeous lake views, boutique shopping and fabulous fresh cuisine. Sun RV Resort Westard Ho, Glenbeulah, WI Stay at one of these RV resorts in the Great Lakes region. On the western shoreline of Wisconsin, right on Lake Michigan, is the city of Sheboygan, known as “the spirit of the lake.” Sheboygan offers fantastic beaches, fishing, shopping,... [Read more...]

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