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

Oregon’s Honeyman State Park-Four Tips for RV Camping Fun

School may be starting, but there’s still plenty of time for a weekend of R&R on the Central Oregon Coast. Load up the family and go RV camping to Jessie M. Honeyman Memorial State Park.  This coastal wonderland offers dozens of ways to relax and enjoy the weekend. We’ve narrowed it down to four top tips for making the most of your Honeyman State Park RV camping vacation.

Reserve an Awesome Campsite

With the second largest camping area in Oregon, Honeyman State Park has plenty of options when it comes to scenic campsites. Close to the park’s famous dunes, Lakes Cleawox and Woahink and plenty of hiking trails, the campground becomes the center your Oregon RV camping weekend.  Book one of more than three hundred campsites before you come, to make sure you have the services you prefer.

Jump, Boat or Fish in a Lake

Not only will your campsite be a quick drive to the beach, you’ll also be just down the road from two breathtaking, tree-lined lakes. Cleawox Lake is a highly-praised swimming spot, with tall, Pacific Ocean dunes on one side and a forest of pines on the other. It’s a great place to paddle the shoreline in a kayak and watch for wildlife, as well.

Woahink Lake is also within Honeyman State Park’s boundaries, and offers a different experience for Oregon RV travelers. Much larger than Cleawox, Woahink is the perfect spot to enjoy a day on jet skis or behind a ski boat. Fishing here for largemouth bass and yellow perch is also popular among anglers, so don’t forget your gear!

Hike the Dunes!

Did we mention the presence of two-mile-wide sand dunes that lead to the Pacific while providing a backdrop for Lake Cleawox?

Oregon coast

Oregon coast

Many park visitors spend a day or two learning the joys of dune hiking, or for more adventurous souls, sandboarding, up and down these windswept formations. Either way, the views are awesome, so you’ll be glad you reached the summit. Don’t own sandboards? Look for local outfitters in nearby Florence, OR who’ll be happy to supply what you need.

Take an OHV Adventure

One of the main reasons people come to the Central Oregon Coast is to embark on an off-highway vehicle (OHV) adventure at Honeyman’s dunes and adjacent Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. With miles of dunes designated for OHV use, you’re sure to find an area suited to your level of riding skill.

Just off Highway 101 and filled with possibilities, Honeyman State Park is ready to help your family relax and rejuvenate before school is back in full swing! Take time right now to book your campsite, pack your RV or set up an RV rental and get ready to unwind at Oregon’s Jessie M. Honeyman Memorial State Park.

Posted in Oregon RV Camping Vacation, State Parks | 2 Comments

Oregon Caves National Monument – a Novel RV Vacation Experience in the Northwest!

If you’re looking for a fun and unique RV trip to take before the end of summer, but have no idea to which destination you want the road to take you, then this article may provide the perfect solution to your dilemma!  There’s so much to explore in this vast and beautiful country, so we didn’t have to search too far to discover this little RV vacation gem in the Northwest.  The Oregon Caves National Monument is one of the best outdoors vacation destinations in the Pacific Northwest, and an RV vacation is the perfect way to get there and enjoy your visit!

Gorgeous Nature Path at the Oregon Caves National Monument

Gorgeous Nature Path at the Oregon Caves National Monument

To start off your trip, pick up your RV in Sacramento, and you’ll be rolling towards the caves in less than a day.  On your way to the monument, make sure you pause to take in the redwoods of northern California.  These giant trees have to be seen to be believed.  The redwoods get so big that some have roads running through them!  Your RV probably won’t fit through one of these natural wooden tunnels, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t a great spot to stop and stretch your legs during the drive.

Once you arrive at your destination, you’ll need a good RV campground, and Lone Mountain RV is well-liked by visitors to the area.  After setting up, head down to Cave Junction and grab a bite to eat.  Lots of visitors enjoy the jerky at Taylor’s Country Store, but if you’re in the mood for something a bit more upscale (and historic) consider stopping at the “Chateau at the Oregon Caves.”  This lodge is one of several that were built in Oregon in the 1930’s, and it is on the list of the Great Lodges of the National Parks.  You can just get coffee if you like or stay for a whole meal in a dining room that has a stream running through it!

If there’s one thing you can count on in Oregon, it’s rain, and it was the effect of rainwater sinking through the forest floor that created the caves.   The rain eroded the underground marble to the point that it created these rare and beautiful caves full of awe-inspiring formations.   Exploring these caves is a great way to cool off from the summer heat.  Kids love to go exploring and these caves are sure to bring out the kid in you as well.

Oregon Caves National Monument

Oregon Caves National Monument

The best way to visit the caves is by means of a park service guided tour.  The professional park rangers can teach you all about the long history of these stone chambers.  In addition to exploring through formations like the “Throne Room” and the “Ghost Room,” visitors can also walk along a creek that disappears into the ground and then flows through the cave itself.  In all, the cave passages are more than 15,000 feet long.  The park that surrounds the cave also boasts eight smaller caves.

During the summer you can take a tour that is guided by candlelight in order to get a feeling for the way the first explorers saw these natural wonders.  Also, later in the year during October, guides deliver “Haunted Candlelight Tours” where you just might hear a few local ghost stories mixed in with the history of these spooky caverns!

Whether you decide to go now or to wait till later in the season, the Oregon Caves National Monument is fun trip for getting the whole family outside and exploring underground.  Start planning your RV vacation today!

For more information on renting or buying a motor home CLICK HERE! or call 1-888-337-2208

Photo credits:  Nature path by James Chang and the Oregon Caves National Monument center by James Wellington both are licensed under Flickr Commons.
Posted in Oregon RV Camping Vacation | Leave a comment

Experience Vineyards Fall Color on an RV Trip to Oregon

A top pick for an RV trip this fall is getting up to Newberg, Oregon to see the autumn leaves turning. Beginning in mid-October, you’ll see great colors as the leaves change to amazing displays of different hues. Only about 25 miles southwest of Portland, you will be in the rural forests of Yamhill County and get to view the region’s fall color glory.

Autumn Driveway in Newberg, Oregon

Autumn Driveway in Newberg, Oregon

All around Newberg is the gorgeous Willamette Valley, with more than 170 wineries. The best part of spending time touring this valley is that the leaves in the area’s vineyards add to the color as their leaves also change color during the fall. In addition to the vineyard colors, you will also be able to discover other great things to do on this Oregon vacation.

Willamette Valley Wineries offer many opportunities for special wine tasting experiences, as well as fall celebrations with music and food. Wine country fun awaits you here – the perfect place to get away and enjoy nature, delicious food and lots of friendly folk.

Now to get into the outdoors and get some scenic views that are enhanced by autumn colors. Bald Peak State Park is only nine miles north of Newberg and offers some outdoor fun for the whole family. On those fall days that are clear, you will be able to see Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Hood and other magnificent peaks in the distance. Have a picnic and let the kids play in the play areas.

Champoeg Park is another spot where you can hike among fall brilliance on the banks of the Willamette River. There are many hiking and biking trails and picnic sites. Visit and learn more at the visitor center and see an 1860-style garden right next door. A guided walk is always fun so you can learn all about the pioneers who settled this region.

Also in Champoeg Park you can get a taste of history. See the Historic Butteville Store which was founded in 1863. There is also camping for RVs in the park, with more than 67 sites with water and about 8 full hookup sites. They also have an RV dump station.

Roger’s Landing is the place to go if weather will permit boating. You don’t have to get out on the water in a boat however. You can just explore the docks or engage in some bird watching. Fish for salmon or go hiking. There is plenty to do here!

When you are an aviation buff, you will want to travel ten miles to McMinnville to visit the Evergreen Aviation Museum. They have a world class collection of various aircraft, including the famous Hughes flying boat. Enjoy a show at the IMAX Theater while you are here.

Yes, Oregon has it all in the fall or at any time of year. But when you want a fascinating and colorful autumn trip in an RV, you will find it all south of Portland at Newberg and the surrounding valley.

Picture credits: The picture of a driveway in Newburg, Oregon is from the Wikimedia Commons. It is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Posted in Fall Foliage, Oregon RV Camping Vacation, RV Vacation | Leave a comment

Travel the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway in an RV for a Unique Experience

Lassen Peak as seen from the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway

Lassen Peak as seen from the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway.

Get ready for an adventurous journey in an RV to see the legacy left us by the volcanic activity of yesteryear.  This is one trip that not only takes you into the beauty of the Shasta Cascade area, but affords you the opportunity for an unlimited amount of outdoor recreation. You will travel through forests, wetlands and farmlands to come to a sense of peace and pleasure in Northern California and the southern part of Oregon.

Start your trip near California’s Lake Almanor and stay awhile to enjoy boating, fishing and sailing. Numerous trails provide summertime hiking and the chance to explore the lake and forests. When you reach Chester, you should visit the statue of the famous logger, Paul Bunyan. Take a short side trip to Susanville and perhaps hike on the Bizz Johnson National Recreational Trail.

Only a few miles away you will come upon the famous Lassen Volcanic National Park with its unique geothermal features such as hot springs and fumaroles. You must be sure to include Bumpass Hell on your itinerary when here. This is where a man named Kendall Bumpass stepped through the thin crust of the earth and burned his leg so badly he had to have it amputated. His tragedy has become immortalized here.

When you reach Old Station as you drive north, you will have the opportunity for more hiking on the trails in the area, including Lassen Trail and Nobles Emigrant Trail. Also a must-see is the Subway Cave where you will walk through a lava tube. You’ll need a sweater or jacket, as it gets quite chilly inside. Don’t forget your flashlight either as there is no lighting. If you want to get in some fishing, nearby Hat Creek is one of the best places to go for trout.

As you enter Butte Valley, you will be traveling through the only National Grasslands in the state. Particularly known for the wide variety of wildlife, this area is an incredible place to fit in some bird watching time. This is a High Desert plateau with many lovely communities to pass through. Drive along Highway 97 and catch views of many natural sights. Butte Valley’s Wildlife Refuge is definitely a place to explore.

When reaching Tule Lake, more water sports are waiting for you. Take another side trip to Lava Beds National Monument for more unusual volcanic features such as cinder cones, lava tubes and more! This is a place of wonder for any traveler to enjoy!

As you approach the end of your journey, you can stop in Klamath to look around and also perhaps take time out for some golf at the Running Y Ranch. You will officially end your trip at Crater Lake National Park in Oregon where the violent volcanic activity of years gone by is evident and will show you some of the mysteries of our earth. What an educational and recreational RV trip this has been, and you wouldn’t have missed it for the world!

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

Traveling Along the Columbia River Highway on an Autumn RV Adventure

Columbia River Gorge from Crown Point

Columbia River Gorge Looking East from Crown Point

Jump into an RV motorhome and drive the Columbia River Highway for a unique adventure. This is one scenic excursion that will provide some amazing views. Fall is a wonderful time to go because you will miss the summer vacationers and the parking problems. You’ll also experience beautiful autumn colors as the trees turn.

Yes, Columbia River Gorge during autumn is something to see. And the trip in late fall is one not to miss. The drive takes about one and a half hours, however you will certainly want to allow more time for this 90-mile drive as there are plenty of places to stop along the way. Begin the trip in Troutdale, OR and spend some time there seeing the sights.

Remember, you won’t find a lack of RV camping on the drive. In fact, a great place to stay is the Bridge RV Park and Campground across from the Hood River Bridge. It has quiet and peaceful accommodations with great views.

First stop should be the Lewis and Clark State Park at the western gateway to the gorge. This is also the entrance for the Historic Columbia River Highway. A public boat launch will allow you to get in some boating time. What a great way to soak up some autumn sun! Next stop – on a bluff above Columbia River you will find Corbett Station. Go to View Point Inn to see where the movie “Twilight” was filmed.

At Crown Point State Park, your next stop on your scenic route, you can stop at the Vista House to see a wonderful historic structure. Then you will want to get out and do some hiking in the great outdoors. Mirror Lake hiking couldn’t be better. Then when you reach Guy W. Talbot State Park you can throw out a blanket and have a secluded picnic.

Now for some cascading waterfalls to inspire you to bring out your camera gear. At Shepperd’s Dell State Park you will see the falls that roars over steep cliffs into the creek and rushes on out to the Columbia River. And believe it or not, Oregon has ghost towns! Stop at Bridal Veil to experience a real one! Surrounded by forests, you will find lots of outdoor recreation nearby.

When you want to enjoy the power of nature, visit Multnomah Falls! There is parking right off of Interstate 84 and you just need to walk for five minutes to get to this amazing waterfall. Want to try your hand at fishing on this vacation? You can fish the lake at Benson State Recreation Area and perhaps catch a nice-sized rainbow trout.

Moving on, you will soon come to John B. Yeon State Park where you can hike to your heart’s content. The gentle trail leads you to more lovely waterfalls, and you’ll find the fresh, crisp autumn air makes hiking a pleasure.

Mayer State Park is worth a visit, particularly when you love a little solitude. This time of year won’t have the crowds of summer and you can have a wonderful picnic or enjoy fishing or boating. Don’t neglect to stop at The Dalles, the end of the Oregon Trail. Get another taste of history by visiting the Fort Dalles Museum. Head to Sorosis Park for some incredible views of the area! And you will want to stop at the oldest bookstore in Oregon, Klindt’s. It has the original wood floors and display cases from when it was established – 1870. You can’t beat that for getting the flavor of life in those times.

Families love the Deschutes River State Recreation Area! Go rafting, mountain biking, hiking or fishing. Park at the trailhead near the entrance and take off on a wide trail that goes along an old railroad bed. In the fall you won’t find horses on this trail so you’ll own it!

When you get to Biggs Junction, after a long and leisurely trip along the Columbia River, you will cross the river and head to Maryhill, Washington. You will want to stop in Maryhill State Park to enjoy the natural beauty and take in some cultural history. Walk along the waterfront of the Columbia River.

This brings an end to your Columbia River Highway RV adventure. You can now head home with the knowledge that you have at last experienced the beauty and wonders of Oregon and the Columbia River Gorge. This is one place you can return to again and again and always get a little more enjoyment from your trip.

Posted in Oregon RV Camping Vacation, State Parks | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Traveling the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway in Your RV

The Oregon Coast offers the traveler amazing sights, ocean vistas and adventures in the dunes along the shores of the Pacific Ocean. Following U.S. Highway 101 south for 168 miles from Pacific City to Bandon, Oregon is one of the best stretches along which you can take an RV for one of the most scenic vacations ever. Start out in Pacific City, Oregon and get in some beachcombing along the beautiful beaches.

Next stop is Lincoln City where you must take advantage of the wonderful ocean breezes and fly a kite. This is, after all, the Kite Capital of the World. At Depoe Bay you will find the perfect spot to do some whale watching. There are plenty of places to observe the whales that make this area their home from March through December each year.

Further south, you’ll enjoy the natural beauty of Newport, a lovely area tucked between the Pacific Ocean and the coast mountains. Be sure to get out to Yaquina Head to see the tallest lighthouse in the state. Would you love to see a fishing fleet in operation? The Bayfront area is where to go. There are also shops and wonderful places to experience some of the best seafood around.

Get over to the free crabbing dock in Waldport for an adventure you may never have expected. Crabbing is a unique opportunity to take part in life on the edge of the ocean. You may also spot whales swimming happily off in the Pacific waters. Take a nature walk or kayak on the Alsea River. You can stay at the Chinook RV Park if you like to stay in close range to the water. They are right on Alsea Bay.

Yachats is a bit further down Highway 101, and you must stop here if you would like to investigate the tide pools or do some beach combing. Another popular activity is to take a dune buggy ride in the dunes. Sand dunes and speed go together for an exhilarating experience. Another great place to stop on your way south is Florence. This charming town offers some amazing outdoor recreation, as well as some excellent restaurants in Old Town. Stay in an RV campground on the waterfront.

Visit Reedsport and be sure to go to the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area for a wonderful hiking adventure through the beach grass and dunes. At Winchester Bay you will find miles and miles of pristine beaches and a lot of wildlife, so bring your camera to capture some of this beauty on film. For RV camping with plenty of amenities, go to Winchester Bay RV Resort.

You are coming close to the end of your drive down the Oregon coast. At Lakeside you may be just in time for a festival or other event. They go on all year. Hire a boat in Charleston and get out there in the sun for some sports fishing. At Coos Bay you can visit a botanical garden high above the Pacific on a cliff. In Bandon, get a horse and go riding along the beach. This is the perfect ending to your Oregon RV vacation!

Posted in Oregon RV Camping Vacation | Tagged | Leave a comment

Explore the Oregon Mountains and Valleys on the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway

Mt. Bachelor Behind Hosmer Lake

Mt. Bachelor Behind Hosmer Lake

Discover Oregon on an RV vacation along the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway. You’ll find a large number of lakes as well as amazing lava flows and beautiful meadows. When you stay on this scenic route, it may take up to five hours to travel from one end to the other, but you should plan for a longer trip because you’ll want to stop and spend time at some of the special places.

Start your trip in Bend, Oregon but before embarking, be sure to stop at Drake Park. Relax and get in the mood for your excursion. Once you take off and move through Deschutes National Forest, you’ll begin to appreciate what this vacation trip is going to be like. Lovely forests hold nature’s wonders, and you’ll want to get out there and absorb the beauty.

Turn off to make your way to Dutchman Flat, an expanse of desert area right in the middle of the lush forests. Hiking trails will beckon, so ensure you are ready to pull on those hiking shoes and take off on a trek you are sure to enjoy. The Tumalo Mountain Trail is short enough for the novices. Further along the byway you’ll come to Swampy Lakes and the Swampy Lakes Trail. These marked trails vary in length for different levels of hikers.

You can ski even through June at Mt. Bachelor Ski Area. The snow-covered slopes accommodate beginning or experienced skiers. In the summer you shouldn’t miss the lift taking you to the summit with panoramic views all the way to California and Washington State.

This part of Oregon is a hiker’s paradise. Moving along your scenic route, you will come to Green Lakes Trailhead where you can access the Three Sisters Wilderness Area. The wildlife is abundant. Be sure to bring your camera to catch some photos of the Clark’s Nutcracker making a racket overhead. You’ll also see deer and cute little ground squirrels. Within Three Sisters Wilderness there are about 260 miles of trails. You can even hike a portion of the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail. Take a bike, hike or go horseback riding through the forests for a real Oregon experience.

There’s nothing like an adventure of rafting or kayaking on the Deschutes River or camping along Lava Lake. You’ll find convenient RV camping by the lake where you can catch some fish or go sailing. At Osprey Observation Point you can park in their parking lot and take a trail to the observation area to view the Osprey feeding and breeding. Watch the birds dive from huge heights to catch a meal.

When you finish your RV excursion through Central Oregon, you will feel the nostalgic sorrow that comes at the end of a wonderful time. But you’ll be happy to know that this scenic drive is always here to enjoy another time. Come back every year! Journey into the forests of Oregon once again to feel the thrill of the sights and sounds of our great U.S.A.

Picture credits: The picture of Mt. Bachelor is from the National Scenic Byways Program website. It is copyright © 1999 Roger Keiffer and used here in accordance with the Terms and Conditions outlined on the website.

Posted in National Scenic Byways, Oregon RV Camping Vacation | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Oregon Outback Scenic Byway by RV

Paulina Creek Falls in the Deschutes National Forest

Paulina Creek Falls in the Deschutes National Forest

Central Oregon’s million-acre Deschutes National Forest offers RV camping vacation possibilities for the weekend, week-long or we’re-going-to-be-gone-awhile RV travelers. One of the most memorable ways to experience this vast forest is on the Outback Scenic Byway, from La Pine, OR through the heart of the forest to Lakeview. It’s a little over one hundred miles from end to end, but this byway is loaded with historic and natural wonders to discover. Plan to take your time and savor the Oregon Outback by RV.

Outback Scenic Byway Itinerary
The Outback Scenic Byway (Hwy 31) explores the volcanic slopes, mountain lakes, pine forests and sagebrush desert of Central Oregon. Beginning in La Pine, OR, in the heart of Deschutes NF, this byway travels south and soon passes near a number of fascinating historic and natural attractions. Fort Rock State Natural Area, a rugged desert volcanic formation, makes for excellent hiking (be sure to seek out the immense “Hole in the Ground” while you’re there.) Nearby Christmas Valley Sand Dunes offer RVers plenty of OHV action. And to learn about the area’s early settlers, visit the Homestead Village Museum in Fort Rock, OR.

And then it’s south on the Outback Scenic Byway through the village of Silver Lake, over Picture Rock Pass, where ancient petroglyphs can be seen, and into a wonderland of alkali lakes and natural hot springs. Plan a stay at Summer Lake Hot Springs RV Resort for a unique, spa-centered experience on the byway. Another way RVers love to experience Summer Lake is by hiking the eighteen-thousand-acre wildlife refuge. By the way, anglers will find nearby Ana Reservoir RV Park is close to rainbow trout and bass fishing hotspots.

Did we mention that part of the unique appeal of the Oregon Outback is the ability to drive for miles without seeing a house or a town? This is a place where pulling off at an overlook for panoramic views can be a solitary experience. But if you need a little civilization mixed in with open spaces, quaint towns along the Oregon Outback Scenic Byway fit the bill. Towns like Paisley, Christmas Valley and Fort Rock offer mercantiles, cafes and taverns, each with rugged desert charm. OregonsOutback.com has a nice listing of points of interest along the byway.

Let’s keep rolling to find the wonders of Lake Abert and the Abert Rim, about thirteen miles off the byway at Valley Falls. The lake is saline, inhabited only by brine shrimp, but that makes it the perfect place for bird watching! If you’re up to the challenge, hike to the Rim to capture magnificent photos from this quarter-mile-high rock formation above the high desert.

Just south of Lake Abert, RV camping rockhounds will find an Oregon Outback treasure, the Sunstone Gem Collection Area, where you can hunt for the state’s official gem. Once you’ve hunted for flashing stones in the desert, it’s time to head south again.

As you make the final run of this itinerary to the mountain town of Lakeview, plan to stay and play awhile. Settled at the base of the Warner Mountains, the area surrounding Lakeview is a wonderful place to hike, bike and fish. Keep your eyes to the sky and you may see hang-gliders launching from area bluffs. Junipers Reservoir RV Resort, located on a working cattle ranch, offers access to a wealth of outdoor recreation.

Want some memorable wildlife photos to take home from vacation? Visit Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge, surrounded by a picturesque chain of lakes east of Lakeview. It’s likely you’ll also spy bighorn sheep, elk and deer along the way.

Ready for an Oregon RV camping adventure? The Oregon Outback is waiting for RV camping fans to come discover its rugged desert charm. We’ll help you find the perfect RV rental for your trip, and then it’s off to follow your imagination along the Oregon Outback Scenic Byway.

Posted in National Scenic Byways, Oregon RV Camping Vacation | Tagged | Leave a comment

RV Camping Journey on the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway

The Pacific Coast Scenic Byway uncovers the wonders of the Oregon coast quite perfectly. Running the length of Western Oregon, Highway 101 reveals breathtaking coastline, picturesque seaside towns and magnificent state forests. Pack your camera and your camping gear and get ready for the RV camping journey of a lifetime.

Pacific Coast Scenic Byway Highlights
Whether you start your journey in Astoria, OR (just three hours south of Seattle) or travel north from Brookings near the Oregon/California border, the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway offers plenty to see and do.

Let’s start at the northern end of the byway, in the lovely seaside town of Astoria. Take a trolley ride along the Columbia River and be sure to bring your camera for photos of this town’s impressive collection of Victorian buildings. Then it’s time to cross the bridge over Young’s Bay for the next stage of the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway.

If your appetite for history has been whetted, travel just a few miles south to Fort Clatsop National Memorial. Otherwise, continue south on Hwy 101 toward Seaside, another quintessential Oregon coastal village. Leave yourself time to stroll the Promenade and visit the Seaside Aquarium; they’ve been delighting visitors for decades.

Ready to stop for the night? There’s no better place along the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway than Cannon Beach, Oregon, home to Haystack Rock. Just minutes from this amazing geological specimen, you’ll find comfortable, affordable RV camping at the RV Resort at Cannon Beach. Here’s a tip: If you’re up for a twisty, turny two-lane drive, Ecola State Park just north of Cannon Beach, is almost too scenic for words.

The next stretch of Highway 101 hugs the coastline, giving RV travelers outstanding opportunities to experience the region’s rugged beauty. The villages of Manzanita, Nehalem and Wheeler lead the way to historic Rockaway Beach, Oregon, a fine place for enjoying sand and surf.

Journey just an hour south from Rockaway Beach and find several days’ worth of activity on Tillamook Bay. The towns of Garibaldi and Tillamook ring the Bay, offering a nice range of attractions on the edge of Tillamook State Forest. Campgrounds like Harborview Inn and RV Park in Garibaldi make a nice home base for excursions to attractions such as Tillamook’s famous cheese factory and nationally-acclaimed Tillamook Air Museum.

It’s been a wonderful RV camping journey so far along the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway in Oregon, but there’s so much more to see! Just twelve miles southwest of Tillamook, off Hwy 101, Cape Lookout State Park offers hikers the chance to explore great nature trails.

Then it’s south again on Highway 101 to the city of Newport on Yaquina Bay. The Yaquina Head and Yaquina Bay Lighthouses are don’t-miss opportunities to learn more about Oregon’s coastal guardians. You’ll also find a first-rate aquarium and interesting historic sites within this city on the bay.

Another hour south along the breathtaking Oregon coast will lead you to the quaint village of Yachats (Yaw-hawts) and two more outstanding outdoor wonders. The basalt formations of Devil’s Churn and the chance to watch whales at Cape Perpetua will thrill your party’s nature lovers. By the way, Beachside Campground near Yachats  lets campers listen to the waves while camping with modern amenities.

Continue south to the town of Florence in the Siuslaw National Forest, where Heceta Head State Park is home to a nicely-preserved lighthouse. Wildlife watchers will want to hit the beach and trails, too, for a chance to see puffins, sea lions and whales! And there’s one more must-see before leaving Florence. The Sea Lion Caves continue to astonish visitors with their rugged beauty and fascinating inhabitants.

Wrapping up our journey is a trio of attractions, each worthy of at least a day’s stay. Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area is a favorite with OHVers, boasting five story dunes and plenty of room to play. Coos Bay, a bustling international port, also offers historic attractions and several state parks close by. One last suggested stop on the route? Gold Beach, with its beautiful bridges and awe-inspiring beach.

What a wonderful journey! We know you can’t wait to discover the beauty of the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway by RV. For more information on this fabulous route, see Byways.org, and be sure to let the folks at El Monte RV Rentals know if we can lend a hand.

Posted in Oregon RV Camping Vacation | Tagged | Leave a comment