Six Awesome Swimming Holes to Visit By RV

When experiencing the sweltering heat of summer, it’s natural to daydream about shady pools where the cool, clear water is waiting to offer relief. If swimming holes are in short supply near you, no worries! We’re going to share six swimming holes RV travelers love to visit.

South Yuba River State Park – Bridgeport, CA

The dog days of summer are the perfect time to hike down this scenic waterway to one of the many swimming holes within the state park. Spring flows can be treacherous, but by late summer the river has calmed down and offers sweet relief in its cool, granite-lined waters. Be prepared to hike in the river, as no ‘drive-up’ access to these pools is available.  RV campgrounds in Camptonville and Browns Valley are a short drive from the state park.

Slide Rock State Park – Sedona, AZ

Slide Rock State Park, AZ

Slide Rock State Park, AZ

The cold, clear waters of Oak Creek slip along an eighty-foot groove over smooth sandstone boulders. Swimmers can travel down this natural water slide and beat the heat while enjoying the beauty of Sedona’s famed red rocks. Three tips for enjoying this swimming hole that’s consistently chosen as one of America’s favorites—wear water shoes to avoid falling on slippery rock, wear old shorts over your swimwear to avoid friction related malfunctions and call ahead to make sure the swimming hole is open in late summer (low water flows may close the attraction). Numerous private campgrounds between Flagstaff and Sedona are waiting to welcome RV campers.

Inks Lake State Park – Burnet, TX

The rocky terrain and cool blue waters of this Hill Country lake keep swimmers (and campers) coming back for more. Devil’s Waterhole is a sweet spot for adventurous souls brave enough to dive from the cliffs above. The large, on-site RV campground makes it easy to stay awhile and experience the rugged beauty of the area.

Kings River Falls – Witter, AR

Located in the northwest corner of Ozark National Forest, the Kings River Falls Natural Area is a sight to behold. Ozark Mountain beauty frames the Kings River as it flows over large slabs of rock to create the Falls that swimming hole fans rave about. The water is cold and pristine and so worth the two-mile round-trip hike from the parking area to reach the Falls. More than a dozen developed campgrounds within the national forest present plenty of possibilities for RVers.

Southside Quarry – Louisville, KY

This Louisville entertainment staple is an old-fashioned, quarry-turned-swimming-hole where the music is playing, the sun is shining and there’s a laid-back adults only atmosphere. The quarry is quite deep, so most folks bring along something to keep them afloat. Rocky cliffs along one side create visual interest (and a place to dive from, if you’re brave). The entrance fee goes to charity, so you can do something good while cooling off from Southern summer sizzle.

Madison Blue Spring State Park – Lee, FL

The turquoise waters of North Florida’s natural springs make for some of the best swimming imaginable. Madison Blue Spring on the Withlacoochee River flows up into a hardwood forest, creating an idyllic spot for a lazy, summer afternoon. Both swimmers and cave divers take advantage of the limestone ledges surrounding the pool to make their launch into the spring. Nearby campgrounds include Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park in Madison, just ten minutes away.

Pack the RV and grab your swim gear. There’s no better way to beat the summer heat than an RV camping trip to find awesome swimming holes.

Posted in Arizona RV Camping Vacation, Arkansas RV Camping Vacation, California RV Camping Vacation, Florida RV Camping Vacation, Kentucky RV Camping Vacation, Texas RV Camping Vacation | Leave a comment

Why You Should Take an RV on your Next Road Trip to Disney

Whether coming to America for a road trip to a Disney theme park, or heading out from your home base in the States, traveling there by RV makes sense. For lodging and travel, you can’t beat the comfort of a recreational vehicle. Traveling to your Disney destination by RV can also be a special time of family bonding, close enough to connect and roomy enough to prevent sibling squabbles.

Add that to the savings of renting a campsite versus staying in hotels and being able to cook some meals to stay on budget, and you’ll wonder why you’ve ever traveled any other way. Hold on as we share the details you’ll need to plan your next RV road trip to Disney. 

RV Camping to Disney World

One of the many reasons RVers love Disney World in Orlando, Florida is Fort Wilderness, Disney’s beautiful on-site resort and campground. Park among the trees in one of four levels of campsites, depending on your preferred camping style. You’ll be saving plenty to spend on Disney souvenirs, with campsite rental rates below $100 for the most premium amenities.

When you return from a thrilling day at Disney World, the kids won’t want to retire to the camper. Fort Wilderness offers more than seven-hundred wooded acres filled with hiking trails, swimming pools, a lake with boat, canoe and kayak rentals as well as fishing excursions, arcades, outdoor sports courts and many more ways to play back at the campground. This is one place the kids will beg to return to, thanks to the care Disney takes to make your camping experience memorable.

RV Camping Trip to Disneyland

The original Disney theme park, located in Anaheim, is a beloved destination for families traveling to California by RV. The Disneyland park doesn’t have on-site camping, but there’s no reason not to travel there by RV, thanks to several RV parks within a short drive.

Disneyland Castle

Disneyland Castle

Anaheim RV Park is directly across I-5 from Disneyland, offering camping within a shuttle ride or short walk to the park. Anaheim Harbor RV Park is just north of Disneyland, two blocks from I-5. Orangeland RV Park is about fifteen minutes east of the theme park, close to shopping and entertainment districts. One more choice for visitors who hope to enjoy the great outdoors while camping is Canyon RV Park, a thirty-minute drive from Disneyland via CA-91.

These RV parks close to Disneyland offer different levels of amenities, so be sure to check their websites for more information before making reservations. A quick check of hotels within the same proximity to Disneyland will let you know the rates can be hundreds of dollars per night, compared to an average rate of $75 per night for these campgrounds. By the way, if you’re arriving in a motorhome without a towed vehicle, there’s parking available in the ‘oversized vehicle’ lot right on the Disney property.

No matter which Anaheim campground you choose, the convenience and camaraderie of traveling together, having the option of preparing some of your meals and saving money while enjoying the legendary thrills of Disneyland make RV camping your best travel and lodging choice.

Ready to head for Orlando or Anaheim on your next RV camping vacation? We’re here to help with RV rentals! RV camping and Disney…it’s going to be one of your best vacation memories.

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Spring RV Travel in Search of Desert Wildflowers

North American desert landscapes will host lavish displays of color this spring, thanks to heavy winter rains. In parts of California, they’re actually calling 2017 the year of the ‘Super Bloom’.

It’s time to take the RV out of winter hibernation for a trip to the desert in search of wildflowers. We’ve got all the information you’ll need to hike, camp and thoroughly enjoy the desert’s flashiest season.  

RV Wildflower Viewing Trips

RV Wildflower Viewing Trips

RV Desert Wildflower Itineraries

According to DesertUSA.com, there are several desert locations in America where wildflowers are either blooming right now (last minute RV road trip, anyone?) or will be in full bloom in the next thirty days.

Some of the best places to enjoy desert wildflowers are on BLM preserves. This year has promised to bring such abundant color that the Bureau of Land Management has set up a special hashtag, #TracktheBloom, and is asking desert visitors to share their wildflower photos on social media sites such as the BLM California Facebook page.

That last-minute location we mentioned, where cacti and other desert plants are showing their best colors this month is Carrizo Plain National Monument in California’s Central Valley. Here’s what you need to know to plan your RV trip:

What’s Blooming? Plenty! Expect to see lupine, delphinium, goldfield, hillside daisies and poppies through April in the immense valley that’s home to Soda Lake.

How to Get There? Carrizo Plain NM can be reached via several major highways. From Van Nuys, drive north on I-5 (four-hour trip.) From Las Vegas, it’s nearly a straight shot west eight hours via I-15, same distance from Phoenix via I-10.

Where to Camp? There are two improved campgrounds within this two-hundred-thousand-acre preserve, if you’re up for primitive camping (vault toilets, no utilities). If you prefer developed campsites, there are dozens of RV campgrounds near Carrizo Plain NM in Bakersfield, Santa Margarita or San Luis Obispo.

Or, you could drive farther south to where Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is also in full bloom through late April.

What’s Blooming? Ocotillos, desert sunflowers, many kinds of blooming cacti and spectacular indigo bush are just a few of the species waiting to delight the eye.

How to Get There? The State Park is two hours northeast of San Diego on Montezuma Valley Road, about an hour-and-a-half southeast of Temecula or a six-hour drive west from Tucson, AZ via I-8.

Where to Camp? Lots of options, but be sure to call ahead, as wildflower season may fill campgrounds. Borrego Palm Canyon Campground, The Springs at Borrego RV Resort and Tamarisk Grove Campground, an hour south in Julian, CA are three campgrounds to consider for your RV trip to Anza-Borrego.

We’ll leave you with a trio of other RV road trip ideas to find desert wildflowers. Pick one that sounds fun and get packing!

Have a four-wheel drive towed vehicle? Bounce along the 25-mile Quebradas National Backcountry Byway in southern New Mexico. You’ll find beautiful blooming cacti and desert plants in a rugged, undeveloped setting. Take I-25 south from Albuquerque, follow the Byway signs from Escondida, NM to Escondido Lake and beyond. This is on BLM land, and you can find developed campgrounds nearby in Magdalena, NM.

Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada is another stunningly scenic landscape that’s especially nice when brittle bush and cactus species are abloom. Find it forty miles north of Las Vegas on I-15 (northern end of Lake Mead), with campsites both primitive and developed within the park, or Las Vegas campgrounds close enough to make it a day trip.

Poppies, lupine and globe mallows dominate the slopes of Picacho Peak State Park in southeast Arizona. Located midway between Phoenix and Tucson off I-10, this wildflower haven is easy to access and features hiking trails surrounding the peak that gives the park its name. There are eighty electric-only campsites within the Park (fill those water tanks before you arrive) as well as a private RV resort near the I-10 park entrance.

What better reason to travel by RV in spring than to seek the desert places abloom with wildflowers? Pick one or more of these amazing desert settings and bring your hiking shoes. You’re going to want to get close to nature when you see what she’s offering this spring!

Posted in Arizona RV Camping Vacation, California RV Camping Vacation, Nevada RV Camping Vacation, State Parks | Leave a comment

Hiking and RV Camping in Joshua Tree National Park

Camping in the surreal landscape of Joshua Tree National Park is unlike any other American camping experience. The huge, uniquely shaped boulders, the distinct silhouette of thousands of Joshua Trees marching along the desert floor and the abundance of desert plant and animal life make coming to this place where the Mojave and Colorado Deserts meet fascinating. It also provides an amazing place for hikers to explore, stretching twelve-hundred square miles through Southern California near Palm Springs.

Where to Camp at Joshua Tree

RV Camping at Joshua Tree National Park

RV Camping at Joshua Tree National Park

Camping at Joshua Tree NP is fairly easy, if you prepare ahead for ‘dry camping’ conditions. There are actually five developed campgrounds within the park, with two equipped for RVs. There aren’t any electrical, water or sewer hook-ups at these campsites, but two campgrounds—Black Rock and Indian Cove—have drinking water available within the campground. Reservations are highly recommended from October to May, as the mild winter temperatures in this desert national park make it a popular place with campers.

Here are some tips to help make your Joshua Tree National Park camping experience a good one.

* Generator use is limited to 7-9 a.m., 12-2 p.m., and 5-7 p.m., so plan electrical use accordingly.

* Pets must remain leashed at all times outside your RV.

* Only small campfires, within fire rings or grills provided by the park, are allowed. * If no campsites are available on your desired dates, use this link from NPS.gov to locate other local options.

* Always practice Leave No Trace camping etiquette.

Where to Hike at Joshua Tree NP

You’ve set up camp and you’ve laced up your hiking boots, but which way to go? You could start at one of the park’s three visitor centers to get an overview of the unique ecosystems and the trails that wind through them.

Or you could use this handy guide to Joshua Tree NP hiking trails at NPS.gov. Either way, you’ll find plenty of information about popular destinations within the park. Here are just a few suggestions for places to discover from the park’s nearly three dozen trailheads.

Keys View is a rocky promontory with views of the Coachella Valley. The short loop trail is accessible via a twenty-minute drive from Park Boulevard.

The seven-mile hike into Lost Palms Oasis leads to a palm-filled canyon.

Making the hike up to Mastodon Peak is a must if you’re in good condition, as you’ll never forget those views of the Salton Sea.

Older kids would love the one-mile hike into Hidden Canyon, where enormous boulders are said to have once hidden cattle rustlers.

These are only a few of the dozens of trails that you’ll encounter as you begin to explore Joshua Tree National Park on foot. Keep in mind that, even in winter, this is a place of sudden weather changes, so always be prepared. You’ll also want to carry plenty of water in this desert environment and respect the plant and animal life that makes this place so special.

Consider hiking and camping at Joshua Tree National Park on your next visit to Southern California. If lack of an RV is keeping you at home, give us a call and we’ll help you find the rental location and RV model that suits your plans. It’s going to be a trip you’ll talk about for years!

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Southern San Diego County Surf & Camp Vacation

Did we whet your appetite with ideas for surfing and RV camping your way through Northern San Diego County? Well hold on, because we’re just getting started. This week, we’re going to keep moving south and talk about the places where the breaks bring big waves and camping keeps you near the beach.

Where to Camp Near San Diego Surfing

As we move down the shoreline into San Diego surf territory, the prime surf spots stretch to the Mexican border. Before we highlight the best surf beaches in San Diego, let’s talk about where to camp in your RV. Coming from the north in San Diego County, your next opportunity to camp where there’s surfing nearby is San Elijo State Beach near Encinitas. There’s a large campground with standard electric campsites and views to blow you away at sunset.

Farther south, on a spit of sand extending out into San Diego Harbor, Silver Strand State Beach is another option for RV campers who love to surf. Surrounded by both San Diego Harbor and the Pacific Ocean, you can’t beat the scenery and with more than one hundred campsites, the chances of getting a campsite are good.

One more possibility for camping near San Diego surf beaches is to stay at Campland on the Bay, a huge private campground on Mission Bay. It has every amenity you can imagine, so if you’re not able to book or find a site near a state beach, consider camping here instead.

Where to Surf Near San Diego

San Diego, CA Vacations

San Diego, CA Vacations

There’s no shortage of good surfing near San Diego, with natural features like reefs and beachbreaks and several piers to keep things interesting. You’ll remember in our last post that we ended the ride at South Carlsbad State Park. If we pick up our journey to find great surfing by heading south on I-5, our first stop will be the surf beaches near Encinitas.

If you’re camping at San Elijo State Beach (see above) you’ll be just north of Pipes, an area popular with beginning to advanced surfers, depending on which breaks they choose. Continuing south, the twin breaks at Cardiff State Beach, near the iconic SoCal surf town of Cardiff-by-the-Sea, combine with the endless waves at Cardiff Reef to make this town a spot where you’ll want to stay awhile.

When you’re ready to continue south in search of San Diego surfing, plan a stop at Del Mar Beach. With reef and beachbreaks, swells and tricky river mouth currents to add a challenge, this is another SoCal beach worth spending more than one day surfing. Just south of Del Mar, the wicked beachbreaks at Blacks are best left for highly-experienced surfers.

And that brings us south to Scripps Pier at La Jolla, a good place to test your skills on the ledges formed on the pier’s south side. Farther south, La Jolla Shores promises consistent waves that can be conquered by less-experienced surfers, making it popular with local surf schools. A less predictable surf beach can be found at La Jolla Cove, but the waves aren’t always breaking there. If you have the time to wait, you might find yourself in the ride of your life off this beach.

When you finally reach the city of San Diego, you haven’t run out of good surfing. Ocean Beach, out on the point on San Diego Harbor, has all those features that keep the surfing consistent. A reef, pier and two beaches produce breaks in both directions for waves that will keep all levels of surfers busy.

Our final destination, just five miles north of the border with Mexico, is Imperial Beach, a city where surfing is a treasured pastime. Spend time on the south side of Imperial Beach Pier for a lineup to challenge your best moves. Not as busy as other surfing hot spots near San Diego, Imperial Beach is worth making a stop as you near the end of your camping and surfing vacation.

There you have it, our best tips for camping and surfing your way through San Diego County from Encinitas to Imperial Beach. Keep it easy by picking up a San Diego RV rental, booking campsites ahead where you can and planning lots of time to get to know the beachbreaks, reefs and other secrets that make Southern California surfing so exciting.

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Northern San Diego County Surf & Camp Vacation

San Diego County, California, stretches along I-5 from the border with Mexico north to the Orange County line at San Clemente. All along the way are legendary surf beaches, waiting to be explored by RV travelers. There are also exceptional places to camp by RV along the entire route.

We’ve broken up our itinerary into northern and southern San Diego County surf and camp destinations. This week, we’ll be talking about the northern beaches, from Trestles at San Onofre State Beach down to Carlsbad State Beach. As you read, use this handy surf cam/surf report link to see how the waves are breaking at each point.

Surf & Camp Stop 1: San Onofre State Beach

San Clemente, CA

San Clemente, CA

Two surfing beaches worth a visit, no matter when you come to San Diego County, can be found at San Onofre State Beach, just south of San Clemente   and adjacent to Camp Pendleton North. Reserve a campsite before you come at San Mateo Campground, about a mile and a half inland from Trestles Beach.

Make your way along the trail that crosses under I-5 to Trestles and Old Man Beach just to the south, where you’ll find distinctly different surfing conditions, both courtesy of the break at San Mateo Point. (Hint: “Old Man” refers to the long board surfers who once flocked to the rollers here. Trestles offers three areas—Uppers, Middles and Lowers—each with its own signature brand of swells.)

Non-surfers in your camping crew will appreciate the windswept trails along the bluffs and three-plus-miles of beaches to enjoy.

Surf & Camp Stop 2: Oceanside Harbor

The natural and manmade breaks found in the harbor at Oceanside, CA make for consistently good surfing year-round. Situated to receive desirable southwest swells, Oceanside offers challenges for beginning to advanced surfers.

Come RV camping and surfing to Oceanside to experience such hotspots as the jetties on the harbor’s north side, as well as the waves on both sides of the pier. Surfers will also appreciate the steady break action caused by sandbars throughout the harbor.

Where to camp while in Oceanside? There are two beachside parking lots that allow overnight RV parking (no hook-ups, but couldn’t be closer to the water). If you miss those parking spots, there are numerous private RV parks near Oceanside, or you can head for our next Northern San Diego County Surf & Camp Spot—South Carlsbad State Beach.

Surf & Camp Spot 3: South Carlsbad State Beach

South Carlsbad State Beach offers spectacular views from its bluff-top campground, where you can relax each night after a long day of surfing. The continuous break of waves rolling toward Tamarack Surf Beach attracts surfing enthusiasts year-round. An added bonus: you’re a short drive from surfing action at Oceanside as well as the challenges farther south at Cardiff, Del Mar and La Jolla (more about those in the next post).

While at Carlsbad/Tamarack Beach, take the time to walk the four-mile seawall for views of the beach, the ocean and sunsets that will take their place in your top vacation memories.

Whether you decide to RV camp and surf your way through northern San Diego County in the golden days of summer or when winter’s Santa Ana winds kick up a whole new breed of waves, there’s no time like the present to start planning. Pick your next surfing challenge. Rent the RV that suits your style, reserve your campsites and pack your wetsuits and board shorts. That’s really all you need; San Diego County is ready to supply the rest of your epic surf and camp vacation.

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5 Popular Tourist Attractions to Visit in Orange County on Your Next RV Trip

Orange County is one of the most popular tourist areas in California, and for good reason. Orange County offers the best of both worlds with sprawling natural landscapes, ever-growing cities, year-round festivities, and great places to eat. Taking an RV trip to Orange County is a no-brainer, but the real question is what should you do once you get there?

Unless you have a lot of time and money on your hands, there’s no way you will be able to see everything Orange County has to offer in one trip.  Of course, you could make the leap and move there, but not many people have the luxury of uprooting just to get a full experience. Assuming you only have a few days to tour Orange County, here are some of the top tourist attractions to check out.

  1. Disneyland Park
Disneyland Park - Anaheim, CA

Disneyland Park – Anaheim, CA

Orange County is most recognizable as the home of Disneyland. Thousands of people flood to this famed park each year, providing Orange County with the publicity it needs to draw tourists. Disneyland’s attractions continue to grow and evolve even today. Long-time staples like Mickey’s Toontown, Adventureland, and Tomorrowland are enough to bring people from all over to Orange County’s top theme park but newer classics such as Fantasy Faire work to draw even more tourism to the area.

Be sure to check out the RV parking situation before you arrive or plan to make camp at one of the nearby campgrounds.

  1. Mission San Juan Capistrano

This 200-year-old mission is now a monument to Orange County’s diverse past and present. Built by Spanish Catholic priests and Native Americans, the mission was once the center of a self-sufficient community involving agriculture, religion, education, and industry. The mission now offers a number of exhibits, some permanent and some temporary, to go alongside the building’s own historic attributes.

  1. Crystal Cove State Park

For a more natural destination, Crystal Cove has been designated a nature reserve where it fosters the growth of natural plants and animals in its forested canyons, stretches of beach, and tidal pools. It is popular for swimming, surfing, and tidal pool exploration. There are also a number of coves frequently used for after-dark bonfires. Spending a relaxing day at the beach can be a good way to unwind and recuperate from your trip to Disneyland. Just be sure to reserve a spot at the campground for your RV ahead of time!

  1. Huntington Beach Pier

If the ocean is your draw to California, Huntington Beach Pier is a must-visit. The surrounding city of Huntington is known as “Surf City” for the sheer number of surf-driven tourists. People come from all corners of the U.S. to catch a wave and enjoy some of the nation’s best surfing. The website for the famous pier is even updated three times a day for visitors to track the surfing conditions. If you do not surf but want to visit Orange County, now may be the time to learn. RVs are definitely welcome just be sure to check for parking restrictions.

  1. Downtown Disney

Downtown Disney is a part of the enormous theme park that does not require tickets. You can stroll the pristine walkways and peruse the rows of shops, many containing Disney-related merchandise. It also offers the colors and flashiness of Disney without the theme park atmosphere. Entertainment such as night clubs, movie theaters, and live, outdoor shows can all be found in the Downtown Disney district.

Visiting or even moving to Orange County can be an extraordinarily rewarding experience. The area is rich with local culture, diversity, and events while still appealing to the tourist industry with its theme parks and beaches. Regardless of the time you spend in Orange County, it will be worth your while.

Catherine Workman grew up in a small town where she yearned to stretch her wings. Now that she’s left the nest, she spends every available weekend exploring different cities across the country and someday, across the world. She started WellnessVoyager.com with her friends to share her travels and experiences and hopes to inspire others to embrace the hidden gems of the world.

Image via Pixabay by Manic_Sylph

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RV Camping on California’s Highway 99

Looking for a new way to spend a weekend in the Sacramento area? RV camping fans will find two Northern California towns, each with its own vintage charm, along historic Hwy 99E. The towns of Chico and Red Bluff are connected by this scenic byway that parallels the Sacramento River, and is also conveniently close to Mendocino and Plumas National Forests.

Chico – Art for Everyone

You’ll find plenty to keep you busy on our first stop along Historic Hwy 99. While RV camping near Chico, CA, here are five things you won’t want to miss in this friendly town with an artistic flair.

  • SoPo and The Junction, a vibrant, vintage district where the distinct blend of art, music, eateries and special events make the area a favorite of Chico State students.
  • Thursday Night Market on Broadway, held weekly April through September, is a special treat for Chico visitors hoping to experience artists, artisans, food truck chefs and the town’s eclectic music scene, all in one event.
  • Chico’s Public Art offerings include stunning sculptures, murals and mosaics throughout Downtown Chico. Plan time to see each one on your trip.
  • Bidwell Park, more than three thousand acres on the banks of Big Chico Creek, is one of the largest municipal parks in the country. Whether you’re hiking the more rugged trails of the Upper Park or strolling the serene pathways of the Lower Park, it’s the best way to explore Chico outdoors. Scenic bonus—you can enter the park trail system through Chico’s beautiful City Plaza.
  • Eighth & Main Antique Center in Downtown Chico offers antiques and collectibles hunters nearly thirty thousand square feet of shopping. Come early and be prepared to be amazed at what you’ll find in hundreds of booths over two floors.

Hwy 99E – Chico to Red Bluff

When you’re ready to pack up the RV and head down the road to Red Bluff, it’s an easy hour’s drive north, IF you don’t stop to take advantage of seasonal fresh fruit and vegetable offerings along the way.

Once in Red Bluff, you’ll soon see why Northern California RV travelers mark the town as a favorite stop. Not only is it known for its Western history and a great selection of antique stores, it’s also adjacent to Lassen Volcanic National Park. In other words, camping in Red Bluff always promises fantastic views as well as plenty of entertainment!

Once you’ve made a driving circuit of Red Bluff, built high above the Sacramento River, here are four more ideas for spending time while you’re there:

  • Shop and stroll in the Victorian charm of Downtown Red Bluff to find antiques, local arts and crafts and an impressive array of Western wear. Tip for RV camping rodeo fans: if you happen to be in town the third weekend of April, don’t miss the Red Bluff Round-Up, the country’s biggest two-day rodeo
  • Take a walking tour of the town’s gorgeous Victorian homes and be sure to tour the Kelly-Griggs House Museum (open Sundays only) to learn even more about the area’s early settlers.
  • Camp at Lassen Volcanic National Park, just north of town,
    Ciff Lake, Lassen Volcanic National Park

    Ciff Lake, Lassen Volcanic National Park

    and surrender to the wilderness beauty of the region. Whether your idea of outdoor recreation is a quiet walk on a forest trail or fishing an untamed waterway, you’ll find a place to do it in the shadow of Lassen Peak.

  • Visit Gaumer’s Jewelry & Museum: In business for decades, Gaumer’s offers shoppers the chance to learn about local mining history while exploring displays and exhibits featuring gems, minerals and custom-made jewelry.

The Route

How to get to Chico, our first destination on Hwy 99E? You actually have two choices,

  1. Follow I-5 (formerly known as Hwy 99W) north from Sacramento until you reach Hwy 32 and follow it east to Chico.
  2. Follow CA70/Hwy 99E north from Sacramento to Marysville and then continue north thru farmland and orchards on CA70 to Oroville, swinging west on CA149 to Chico.

A trip along Northern California’s Historic Hwy 99E promises plenty for art lovers, antiques hunters and history buffs. Make the whole trip in a weekend, or slow things down and branch out to the magnificent national forests and parks surrounding Chico and Red Bluff for a big dose of natural wonder.

Don’t own an RV? No problem—nothing could be easier than picking up your reserved motorhome rental in Sacramento, or if you’re planning to extend your trip to enjoy the Bay Area, our San Francisco location is waiting to help. We hope you’ll add your trip report to the Comments below!

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RV Camping Along Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway

When we hit the road this Spring and Summer, let’s find something fascinating to explore! One of the most unusual geological regions in America can be found between Lassen Volcanic National Park in Northern California and Crater Lake National Park in Southern Oregon. Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway connects the two parks and offers ample opportunity for RV camping along the way.

Where to Start

No matter which end of the Byway is your starting point on this 500-mile round trip journey, it’s going to be extraordinary. California visitors will find Lassen Volcanic National Park, the southern terminus, about two and a half hours north of Sacramento on I-5.

If you’re starting at the northern end of the Byway, you’ll find your starting point at Crater Lake National Park northeast of Medford about 80 miles on OR-140.

What You’ll See & Where to Camp

Whether it’s waterfalls, volcanic lava fields, sparkling mountain lakes or the stunning sight of Mount Shasta, following the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway won’t disappoint. Scenic campsites along the way are an added bonus.

Here are just a few premier points of interest to discover on your route.

  • Pelican Bay on Upper Klamath Lake in northern Oregon is a stop you’ll definitely want to make. Paddle a water trail, fish for record-breaking trout or simply take in the view made famous by John Muir’s writings. RV campgrounds near Klamath Falls will let you camp close to the Bay.
  • Castle Crags State Park – Pick a campsite and then hike the trails for unforgettable views of massive granite crags and Mount Shasta.
  • Lava Beds National Monument/Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge – Lava tube caves, Native American rock art and RV camping in the nearby towns of Tionesta and Tulelake can make this a special stop for Byway travelers who like the unusual. The wildlife refuge is one more reason to make this side trip, with an auto tour through marshes and grasslands for bird watchers.
  • Dunsmuir, CA – History buffs will love this vintage railroad town in the shadow of Mount Shasta. Bring your fly fishing gear—the trout stream in town is legendary! Save time on your trip to admire the waterfalls between Dunsmuir and Mount Shasta, too.
  • Lake Almanor – Located near the southern end of the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway, Lake Almanor in Lassen National Forest is a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. Hundreds of forest campsites are available and a shoreline hike promises spectacular views.
  • Lassen Volcanic National Park – Mudpots, a bubbling hot lake and the scenic remnants of volcanoes are only three of the attractions RV travelers will find at this park at the Byway’s southern terminus. Primitive and developed campgrounds within the national park make it easy to extend your stay as you hike and drive through thousands of acres of natural attractions.
  • Crater Lake National Park at the Byway’s northern entrance is a remarkable place to begin or end your journey. The view of the lake is worthy of many vacation photos,
    Crater Lake, Oregon

    Crater Lake, Oregon

    so why not hike the rim trail once you’ve set up camp? See how many of the lake’s ‘wizard islands’ formed by cinder cones you can spot. Speaking of campgrounds, the park’s Mazama Campground has both primitive and developed sites. 

Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway provides RV travelers the chance to experience stunning views and exciting outdoor recreation. You’ll also learn about the history of northern California and southern Oregon with intimate side trips into the countryside, visiting quaint towns and historic attractions.

Let us help with a California RV rental and feel free to use our handy list of California campgrounds to plan your trip. We can’t wait to hear about the memories that RV camping along the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway creates.

Posted in California RV Camping Vacation, National Parks, Oregon RV Camping Vacation | Leave a comment

Three Spring Break RV Camping Itineraries

Kids out of school soon and still haven’t picked your Spring Break vacation spot? Why not take the family RV camping this year? We’ve put together three camping destinations perfect for families on Spring Break.

Spring Break RV Camping & Fishing Trip: Lake Texana, Edna, Texas 

Have a houseful of eager young anglers looking forward to catching the big ones? Take the RV southeast from Austin to Edna, Texas and the wonders of Lake Texana.

Brackenridge Park and Campground and Texana Park and Campground, both part of the Brackenridge Recreation Complex on the lake, offer Texas Spring Break RV Campers plenty of choice for accommodations. Not sure how to please everyone in your crew? Whether it’s hiking the trails, photographing wildlife or enjoying legendary Texas bass fishing, we think you’ll find something for everyone to enjoy on your stay.

With a fishing pier, perfect bass habitat, canoe and kayak rentals and six hundred acres of shoreline to enjoy, this South Texas lake is an excellent place to entertain the youngsters on Spring Break. Don’t forget to reserve your Texas RV rental. Spring Break is right around the corner!

Spring Break in the Heart of California Gold Country – Columbia, CA 

Hoping to surprise the youngsters with a little gold this Spring Break? Why not camp in the heart of California’s Gold Country and spend some time in the town that’s also a State Historic Park? Columbia, California, home to an impressive collection of Gold Rush-era structures, has plenty for young prospectors to explore.

Stroll the boardwalks with the family and soak up 1850s ambience, then stop to enjoy a meal, shop for souvenirs and enjoy the living history presentations. There are enough historic structures, museums and exhibits to keep everyone busy. Be sure to let the kids try their luck at gold panning, too; it’s a favorite activity for Columbia visitors.

You’ll also enjoy camping in the beauty of the Sierra Nevada foothills. Private campgrounds in Columbia help keep family RV camping convenient.

Spring Break in the Pacific Northwest – Bellingham, Washington 

Families who want to divide their Spring Break time between urban adventures and outdoor recreation will find no better place than Bellingham, WA. Just south of the Canadian border and a couple of hours north of Seattle, this coastal city has plenty to discover.

Larrabee State Park

Larrabee State Park

Start your time RV camping in Bellingham by challenging the young ones to complete at least part of the six-mile Interurban Trail. They’ll be rewarded with views of Bellingham Bay, the San Juan Islands and waterfalls in a dense urban forest. Plan to play awhile at Larrabee State Park  at the trail’s southern end, where gorgeous Samish Bay and trails into the Chuckanut Mountains are just part of the outdoor splendor.

While in Bellingham with kids, you’ll also want to visit the city’s exciting museums. One of the best is the Spark Museum of Electrical Invention, where you’ll find thrills for the entire family. Another don’t miss—Mindport, where art and science come together in a fun, interactive environment.

Two more ideas for active families hoping for the full Bellingham experience on Spring Break:

  • Spend a day in the city’s Historic Fairhaven District enjoying shops, coffee houses and vintage charm.
  • Take an hour’s drive east to Mount Baker Ski Area for a day on their world-famous slopes.

One last travel tip for Bellingham RV campers—March will be cooler in Washington than in Southern Spring Break destinations, so pack plenty of cool weather clothing for the kids. Aren’t you glad you’ll be traveling in the roomy comfort of an RV?

And there you have it, three fantastic ways to spend Spring Break RV camping with the kids. Whether you decide to travel to Texas, California or Washington, you’re sure to bring back memories that only camping with the family can deliver.

Photo attribution: By Cody Logan (clpo13) (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Posted in California RV Camping Vacation, State Parks, Texas RV Camping Vacation, Washington RV Camping Vacation | Leave a comment