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!

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Travel the Top of the Rockies in an RV this Summer

View of the Rockies Near Twin Lakes Colorado

View of the Rockies Near Twin Lakes, Colorado

Move along the top of the Rocky Mountains on the Top of the Rockies Byway in Colorado. This trip is an exciting venture across our planet’s most incredible Continental Divide. Sea level is a thing of the past and the rugged mountains present themselves to you in all their magnificence. An ideal destination, too, to get out of the summer heat! Experience the best of the Rockies on this RV trip!

Beginning your adventure in Aspen, you may want to spend some time in this mountain town before moving on. With all the trails surrounding Aspen, it is a great place to get out and hike. Of course, there is always something going on right in town, from a festival to a sporting event. You’ll find something to capture your fancy. Find a secluded spot to sit and fish for a day.

As you follow Highway 82, you are going to come to Independence Pass, a pass that has challenged travelers for many decades. You can drive three miles from the summit to visit the ghost town of Independence to get an idea of the many broken dreams of those who left when the gold rush was over. You will also have the opportunity to visit the Upper Lost Man Trailhead Interpretative Site on your way to this spot. Learning a little history is always good for the soul and puts things in perspective.

If anyone in your party is blind or disabled, the Braille and Discovery Trails were developed especially for them. The Braille Trail allows visitors to experience the outdoors in so many ways – sound, touch and smell. It is an enlightening experience for anyone at all and is worth a stop.

Picture of Downtown Leadville Colorado

Downtown Leadville, Colorado

Stop in Twin Lakes on your way along this scenic byway. The town overlooks the Twin Lakes and has the towering Mt. Elbert as a backdrop. The natural beauty of this area will simply take your breath away. And then, you will come to Leadville. Truly a historic town, Leadville offers a charm that is hard to resist. Besides great food, you will have the opportunity to get out into the wilderness and hike, bike, or fish – or all three. Browse the antique stores. Perhaps buy a gift for a friend or loved one back home. You will have many great amenities at Leadville RV Corral, so settle in there for the duration.

While in Leadville, be sure to see Tabor Opera House, currently being renovated to restore it to its original beauty. Also stop at the National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum to see numerous displays of valuable metals and minerals. This museum honors those who worked so hard to discover and develop our country’s natural resources.

Pass through Red Cliff (or stop for a snack) and then on to Minturn which marks the end of your RV adventure. The views here are wonderful, and you can stop and take them in before turning to head for home. There is nothing like a summer Rocky Mountain RV trip to rejuvenate the spirit.

Picture credits: The pictures of the Rockies near Twin Lake is from the National Scenic Byway website. The picture of downtown Leadville is by Dennis Adams and is from the National Scenic Byways website. Both images are in the public domain.

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An RV Adventure on the City of Rocks Back Country Byway

Emery Canyon in the City of Rocks National Reserve

Emery Canyon in the City of Rocks National Reserve

Get set for a real adventure on the City of Rocks Back Country Byway in Idaho. This is a drive around the Albion Mountain Range with amazing sights to see along the way. Beginning your trip through the Albion Valley you will take Idaho 77 and follow the roads to Birch Creek and finally Oakley, Idaho. The entire route is only 49 miles and will take a few hours depending how often you stop and for how long.

Albion is a fascinating place to visit before you embark on your RV journey. If you stop in at the Albion Museum you’ll find mementos of the area’s pioneer history. Another attraction in this historic town is the Albion Normal School which operated from 1893 until 1951. Once you get your fill of history, you can move on with your travels.

Follow the Howell Canyon Road and get out into nature in the Sawtooth National Forest. Climb to Mount Harrison and visit the fire lookout to get some of the most panoramic views imaginable. If you are really adventurous, you may want to do a long hike all the way from the lookout to City of the Rocks National Reserve. You could either have someone drive your RV there and meet you, or you could hike the 26.2 miles back again. Be sure to have your sleeping bags to hand if you do this. If not up for a hike, you can simply enjoy the scenic lake.

When you reach Connor Creek you’ll be in the region where emigrants moving along the California Trail traveled in their quest for a life in the West. Further along in Elba, the towering mountains on all sides brings to mind how difficult travel was for these pioneers.

Next stop is beautiful Castle Rocks State Park. This is where you have the chance for some real outdoor recreation. Any rock climbers in your family? The rock climbing opportunities here are abundant. There are trails where you can ride horseback, hike or bike. Wildlife and birds are abundant too, and you may spot a moose wandering in the forest. This is always a thrilling experience!

City of Rocks National Reserve is something you definitely won’t want to miss. This is a picturesque area with the granite spires towering above and meadows beckoning you into nature. Rock climbers come here from all areas of the U.S. to meet the challenges of those granite formations. Have a picnic, hike or do some bird watching. This is a marvelous place to relax and let all worries fade away.

Camping at Birch Creek provides an ideal spot with the backdrop of the Albion Mountain Range and Middle Mountain. There is a campground with 20 RV sites with hookups. Then onto your last stop on this byway adventure – Oakley Historic District with its amazing stone and wood structures from the late 1800s. This entire town is on the National Register of Historic Places.

What a trip this has been! There is nothing like an RV adventure on the City of Rocks Back Country Byway!

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Drive the Mountains to Sound Greenway for a Unique RV Adventure

Mountains to Sound Greenway in Snoqualmie Pass

Mountains to Sound Greenway in Snoqualmie Pass

Discover an amazing number of things to do and see along the Mountains to Sound Greenway in Washington State. This drive is perfect for those traveling on an RV vacation, a scenic journey through the landscapes of the Pacific Northwest. Begin your trip in Seattle, Washington where plenty of sights await you, and attractions for all ages. Be sure to visit the Seattle Aquarium. Take a tour with a trained naturalist along the beach and explore the sea life exposed at low tide.

As you leave Seattle on Interstate 90, prepare yourself for some amazing adventures. Not far into your trip you will come upon Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, one of the largest located in an urban area. An ideal place to hike or ride on horseback, this park’s network of wonderful trails invites you into the forest and through the wetland terrain. Bird watching and viewing wildlife is great here too!

Stop for a picnic at Lake Sammamish State Park. This lake is perfect for swimming, fishing and water skiing. If you have a boat, launch it into the lake and soak up the sun for a summer afternoon. Just minutes away is the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery where the family can learn about salmon and can even watch them swimming against the currents on the way to lay their eggs at the right time of the year.

Continue east and you will become familiar with a new landscape that you don’t often see, with beautiful valley vistas and scenic forests. If you love to hike, you can take the John Wayne Pioneer Trail (PDF) south of North Bend, Washington and move across the mountains and through a tunnel boring under the summit of Snoqualmie. This is a long trail and you can just hike a portion, or if ready for a long trek, can hike all the way to Canada!

More hiking is available at Squak Mountain State Park, with popular trails through a wildlife habitat beyond compare. This park remains in its natural state thus is an exceptional place to experience the pristine beauty of nature. Nearby the Tiger Mountain State Forest offers numerous trails where you can hike through 13,000 acres of incredible Washington woodlands.

Don’t miss a stop at Rattlesnake Lake while you are in the area. Catch trout while you relax by the water. There is a boat launch on the east side of the lake for your convenience. Take an exciting hike on the Rattlesnake Ledge Trail to take in the views. You will be able to see the Central Cascades and the Snoqualmie Valley. Don’t forget your camera gear!

Of course, if you love to get into the backcountry, you can explore Alpine Lakes Wilderness, with thousands of acres of forest. No matter what activity you choose on the Mountains to Sound Greenway, you are going to love this RV adventure!

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A Summer RV Trip along the Connecticut River Byway

Along the Connecticut River Byway near Mount Toby and Sunderland, MA

Along the Connecticut River Byway near Mount Toby and Sunderland, MA

This summer take an RV trip along the Connecticut River Byway to experience the most powerful river trail through New England. You can get a full taste of the history, beauty and heritage of three states as you drive this most fascinating and inspiring route. Outdoor recreation is abundant, and the entire family will find activities and fun things to do along the way. Paddling, fishing, hiking and bird watching – whichever you prefer is available, and more.

Starting in Massachusetts and traveling up through Vermont and New Hampshire, this scenic drive will take approximately 14 hours, depending on how often and how long you stop. When you pass through this landscape of rich farms and historic villages, you get a different view of our heritage. Stop at the Mount Holyoke Range State Park and you can find what hikes are available by stopping in at Notch Visitor Center.

On Mount Holyoke, you should be sure to visit the Summit House which was once a luxurious hotel and is now part of J.A. Skinner State Park. The views from this spot will literally take your breath away. On a clear day you will be able to see all the way into New Hampshire and get a glimpse of Mount Greylock.

In Hadley, Massachusetts, stop in at the Hadley Farm Museum. Here you will discover an incredible collection of early farm vehicles and equipment, all housed in a barn built in 1782. Historic artifacts to see include butter churns, toys, cobbler benches and other furnishings. You will really be taking a step back in time.

If you are ready for some hiking, you can embark upon a portion of the Metacomet Monadnock Mattabesett Trail, a National Scenic Trail offering some outstanding scenery and plenty of other recreation as well. One part of the trail is great for those of all ages and is five miles long (the Route 77 to Route 17 section).

Coming upon quaint New England towns is all part of the adventure. Small communities show you a huge welcome, such as in Canaan, Vermont or other Vermont towns such as Littleton, Brattleboro or Vernon.

When traveling through Vermont, stop at one or more of the many state parks along the way. There is a long list of them. Recommended is Fort Dummer State Park in Brattleboro. This fort in the southern foothills of the beautiful Green Mountains was flooded in 1908 with the building of the dam on the river. It can be viewed from the vista from Sunrise Trail. Quechee State Park is also a place to stop and nearby you can visit the Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site and the glass blowing mill and pottery shop. Both parks have campgrounds for RV motorhomes.

When in New Hampshire, find many wonderful places to stop with the family to take in the sights and sounds of New England. Small towns such as Pittsburg, New Hampshire, Bath, Woodsville and Hinsdale invite you into their locale so you can enjoy the hospitality and ambience. The North Woods is an intriguing place and one that provides a multitude of recreation opportunities. Of course, in the winter there is skiing and snow sports, but in summer there are just as many things to do, such as hiking, trout and salmon fishing and much more.

Your route is sure to take you by the Chesterfield Gorge Natural Area, thirteen acres of natural beauty. There are numerous hiking paths along the gorge and you can take some photos of the views. As you hike along through the gorge, notice how the brook flows from a rushing cascade to a gentle stream. It will finally merge with the Connecticut River farther downstream.

In Lancaster, New Hampshire, the John Wingate Weeks Historic Site gives you the opportunity to see a lodge that makes interior decorators melt with envy. Gorgeous picture windows, massive fireplaces of fieldstone! Climb the tower and view the countryside from the observation deck.

Naturally, you will want to get out into the forest and the best way to do that is to take to the trails. Natural wonders are abundant on the Connecticut River Birding Trail (PDF) with numerous stops along the Connecticut River to witness the many species of birds. The Northern Forest Canoe Trail is also nearby, a place where Native Americans made their way across the land in their birch-bark canoes. History runs deep here and the sights you see will remind you of that time and time again.

Picture credits: The picture of the Connecticut River Byway is by Christopher Curtis and is from the America’s Byways Website. It is in the public domain.

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Explore the Elk River Back Country Byway in an RV

If you would love to explore the back country of northern Idaho, a trip on the Elk River Back Country Byway is just the thing. Taking an RV makes the drive just that much more enjoyable as you will have your adventures with much comfort and convenience. Starting your drive in Orofino and taking back roads to Bovill, Idaho, you discover more than just beautiful scenery. You may discover more about your spiritual nature and find inspiration in the diverse landscapes.

This byway consists of two-lane roads, including some turnouts and passing lanes. The entire length is 57 miles of lovely terrain and plenty of activities at every stop. While in Historic Orofino you can find three RV parks where you can camp for a while and plan the rest of your drive. This town dates back to 1895 and the gold rush days.

Dent Bridge

Dent Bridge

When ready to continue your journey, you will move through forests and past ranches and farms that give you a view of what life is like in Northern Idaho. You’ll catch glimpses of plenty of wildlife along the way, including cougar, bear, elk, bobcats and maybe even some wolves. When you come to Dent Bridge, marvel at this beautiful structure, and grab that camera because you’ll certainly want to share this view with friends back home.

Elk Creek Reservoir is the perfect place for some peaceful fishing and bird watching. Spot bald eagles soaring high above you, swans floating in the sparkling waters, and otters playing. At the confluence of Elk Creek and Clearwater River, you have a unique view of this natural forested area from a scenic viewpoint. Loop Road is fun to navigate and you can stop to catch some rainbow trout or explore the mill pond site.

Between Orofino and Elk River, an interpretative trail takes you to Elk Creek Falls. Three cascading falls flow over ancient lava flows and add up to 140 feet of tumbling waters. This is the perfect place for a picnic. This National Recreation Trail provides a relaxing hike into a fascinating canyon with lovely formations.

The small community of Elk River not only has campgrounds available for RVers, but also has full services and some sights to explore. Stop by the Elk River Historical Museum for a taste of the history of the region and wander the town to get an idea of what it was like here in the early 1900s when this mill town began.

Now for some nature and some hiking among the trees! At Perkins Cedar Grove you can follow some trails and take in the magnificent trees that range from 500 years to 3,000 years old. It is Trail 748 which takes you to the Idaho Champion red cedar tree which is the oldest of all. The family will find it quite inspiring to marvel at the wonders that Mother Nature has created here.

Finally you come to Bovill, Idaho with its wildlife viewing opportunities, fishing and hunting. There is an RV park for you to make your base for a few days before heading home. There is nothing better than sitting back and reliving the best parts of your journey before heading home once again.

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Drive along Lake Coeur d’ Alene Shores on an RV Vacation in Idaho

Beauty Bay on the Lake Coeur d'Alene Scenic Byway

Beauty Bay on the Lake Coeur d’Alene Scenic Byway

Driving through an area of mountains and lakes filled with an array of wildlife makes an ideal RV vacation to take this summer. On the Lake Coeur d’Alene Scenic Byway the traveler will discover a summer playground that outdoes most others. As you drive from the junction of I-90 and Idaho Highway 97 along the eastern shore of the lake, you will spot elk, moose and deer roaming and grazing. This will be a trip to remember.

The byway is a two-lane affair, winding through the forests. Access is simple in the summer months and RVers will just have to be confident in their driving abilities. When you reach Wolf Lodge Bay this is where bird watching is at its zenith. Find raptors, waterfowl, upland birds and songbirds galore. The Western tanager is likely the most colorful bird you see. Learn to listen for the call of the loons and the soft hooting of the owls.

Before moving on you will find RV camping is excellent at Lake Coeur d’ Alene Camping Resort with full hookups and direct access by boat to the lake. Stay awhile here then drive on. Obtain some of the best views of Lake Coeur d’ Alene from around Beauty Bay. You can take one paved trail to a deck that overlooks the water. There are other unpaved trails in the area as well. This day-use area is a great place to stop for a picnic among the trees.

More panoramic views and wildlife spotting at the Mineral Ridge Trail! Wander through the Ponderosa pines and Douglas firs as you admire the natural beauty surrounding you. The lake glistens and the sun shines as you make your way to the viewpoints and stop to take in the magnificent scenery. Take the short trail to the west to see an abandoned mine.

The Caribou Ridge National Recreation Trail invites you into the wilderness at any time, but the summer season is the best. In five miles of hiking you can go from around 2100 feet to 4400 feet in elevation. Some parts of the trail are just gentle strolls, so just choose your expertise level. Get a view of the lake in the distance and go all the way to summit – just to say you did it.

For boat access to Lake Coeur d’ Alene, head for Blackwell Island Recreation Site. There are plenty of launch sites, parking spaces and picnic areas to sit and enjoy a quiet lakeside lunch. Walk along the boardwalk that follows the path of the Spokane River. Wildlife viewing decks are the favorite attraction along the way.

One of the best trails in the West is the Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes. You can find access near Lake Coeur d’ Alene, although the entire trails spans some 72 miles from Plummer, Idaho to Mullan, Idaho. This is a paved trail which is ideal for hikers, bikers, skaters and even those in electric wheelchairs.

When you end your journey at Idaho Highway 3, you may wish to carry on exploring on the White Pine Scenic Byway. Otherwise, you can now head home with memories that will last a lifetime.

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Travel the Ohio River Scenic Byway on an RV Vacation

Ohio River in the Fall

Ohio River in the Fall

Take off through the beautiful state of Ohio on the Ohio River Scenic Byway for an RV vacation to remember. You can travel the entire 943 miles through Ohio, Indiana and Illinois, or you can start out just exploring Ohio. Rich in history and full of marvelous views, this drive will allow you to enjoy the rural landscapes and small towns in a unique trip across our lovely American land.

Begin your trip in North Bend, Indiana as you won’t want to miss seeing the Harrison Tomb with its beautiful design of marble and limestone. Views are spectacular here of the Ohio Valley. Move on to Cincinnati where you simply must stop at the Harriet Beecher Stowe House. This is a taste of history regarding the abolitionists, the Underground Railroad and much more. You will discover plenty to do in downtown throughout the summer with various cultural events occurring.

While in Cincinnati there are more extras as far as attractions go, like the Carew Tower and the Museum Center at Union Terminal. But you are going to want to move on to enjoy the remaining sights along the Ohio River Scenic Byway. Next stop will be Georgetown, Ohio, the spot where you can see Ulysses S. Grant’s boyhood home.

In Ripley, the Rankin House is a must-see for history buffs. Around 2,000 slaves were hidden as the Underground Railroad moved them to freedom. This National Historic Landmark is definitely worth a stop. Other places you may want to visit are Carolyn’s House of Mini Rooms Museum with tiny rooms based on various themes and the famous Ripley Museum.

Next stop – Portsmouth. Pick up some antiques while here because this town undoubtedly has some of the best. Browsing the shops is just as much fun as buying, but once you get started you won’t want to stop. Drive out and have a picnic at Alexandria Point where two rivers meet. Forest land is all around for outdoor recreation.

When you reach Gallipolis, visit Our House State Memorial for an education on the rich history of this region, and experience this French Art Colony by walking the streets and absorbing the ambience. After a relaxing time here, move on to Marietta. This city offers many interesting sights but top among them are the Mounds of Marietta, ancient Indian earthworks.

You are reaching the end of this phase of your Ohio River adventure, but take time to enjoy Steubenville and tour Historic Fort Steuben. There are many murals on the walls of this town’s buildings which may provide some memorable photos. Then in Wellsville, stop at the Wellsville River Museum and a short distance from town, see the Museum of Ceramics in East Liverpool. You have had quite a trip, but a fulfilling one. You can return again to enjoy the beauty of Ohio or you can continue your journey into and through other states. The choice is yours!

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An RV Adventure along the Salmon River

Salmon River

Salmon River

An RV trip along the Salmon River provides an excellent vacation, a way to enjoy the Salmon River Scenic Route in a unique manner. You will be creating a vacation to remember. And this is the perfect time of year to travel this gorgeous byway, too. June is a great time to move along this river road and gaze out into the wilderness to enjoy watching the wildlife. You can carefully navigate the two-lane road and find the peace that only the Idaho backcountry can provide.

Begin your adventure in Stanley, Idaho. This is a mecca for outdoor recreation, such as rafting, biking, horseback riding and fishing. The community is filled with friendly folk who will answer your questions and point you to the best eateries. Here you will also find guides if you wish a guided fishing trip or other exciting excursions.

You will take Idaho 75 out of Stanley and head for the Land of the Yankee Fork State Park to visit a special place where history comes alive. Naturally, there are plenty of opportunities to get outside in the forest and find recreational fun. Don’t forget to stop at the Custer Historic Mining Town, a ghost town within the historic area. There are a number of buildings from the mining era. Stop in the gift shop and pick up some mementos.

Another sight to see is the Yankee Fork Interpretive Center. Try your luck at the gold panning station and enjoy the many museum exhibits. You can really get the feel of earlier times when you watch the audiovisual programs offered. Those of all ages enjoy those! Not far away you can also visit the Challis Bison Jump Site which is a fascinating place indeed.

When you reach Challis, Idaho you may want to stay awhile. More outdoor adventures await! Fishing is marvelous and the clear and flowing Snake River gives you the ideal fishing environment. You can take off and hike to the higher mountain lakes if you desire, or you can fish right near town. Hook some cutthroat, brook or rainbow trout. Challis is also a birding paradise and you’ll see sandhill cranes along the river and watch as bald eagles fish the cold waters. The Pioneer RV Park in Challis is the ideal place to stay while you visit. They have lots of space and full hookups.

In Salmon, Idaho, stop at the Lemhi County Historical Museum. Get a new understanding of the American West as you tour the museum and see the numerous artifacts. You will get tastes of the Shoshone culture, the gold mining days and aspects of ranching in this area. There are a number of photos coming from the Chinese people who arrived here when gold was discovered.

The Tower Rock Recreation Site should come next on your itinerary. This is where Lewis and Clark camped and you may feel their spirits in the forest greenery and the blue skies above. Trout fishing is great here and you can catch steelhead and trout. You will even find RV sites, and although there are no hookups, it is an amazing place to camp in an RV.

A must-see is the Tower Creek Pyramids, a site that Lewis and Clark visited in the early 1800s. The geological formations viewed by Clark were spelled “pirimids” in his journal. Sit on the banks of Tower Creek and have a picnic. This is a spot to shed all cares and get back to nature.

William Clark’s Reconnaissance is a three-paneled interpretive sign along the byway. You will find it fascinating to stop and read the history of Clark’s observations and what the Down River Reconnaissance was all about. Even though you are nearing the end of this adventure, sometimes the beauty of the area takes you suddenly by surprise and you think seriously about moving here.

The final stop on this trip is the Lost Trail Pass which is located at the far north end of this wonderful Salmon River Scenic Byway. This is right on the Montana border and soars 6,995 feet above sea level. Spectacular views of rocky cliffs and forested hills make this a place to stay for a little while and enjoy.

This scenic route offers so much in the way of beauty and the presentation of some of the natural wonders of our world. To experience it all again, drive back the way you came for a new viewpoint. And come back soon to do it all over again.

Picture credits: The picture of the Salmon River is by Fredlyfish4 at the English language Wikipedia. It is from the Wikimedia Commons and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

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Take a Thrilling RV Trip along the Blue Ridge Parkway

Blue Ridge Parkway in the Fall

Blue Ridge Parkway in the Fall

North Carolina and Virginia offer some gorgeous sights for the RV vacationer. The best route for enjoying the views is the Blue Ridge Parkway. There is really no better way to experience these Eastern forests, mountains and blooming flowers. Attractions are numerous and just waiting for your visit.

Traveling north on the byway begins in Asheville, North Carolina. Tour the art community and discover some amazing history by seeing the Biltmore Estate, a 250-room French Renaissance chateau. And if you love to wander garden trails go over to the North Carolina Arboretum. You will see a bonsai collection there that will have you yearning to learn that art.

Take your time as you head north on the parkway. The overlooks allow you to gaze out on the diverse landscapes of the Great Smoky Mountains. When you reach Spruce Pine, North Carolina, stop at the Museum of North Carolina Minerals to look over the hundreds of minerals and gems that were found in this area. Kids with you? They will love the interactive displays at this museum, but so will the grownups.

You will most certainly want to explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park while here. The outdoor recreation in this park has no equal anywhere else. The rushing rivers and panoramic views serve to remind us of the fragility of our natural world and urge us to get out and enjoy it anytime we have the chance. You can hike, bike and fish here until your heart’s content.

Take a guided tour of the Linville Caverns when you reach Marion, North Carolina on your journey. This is an attraction you won’t want to pass up as you are getting the unique opportunity to explore the inside of a mountain! Then you will continue on into Virginia to stop at the Natural Bridge. Hike the Cedar Creek Nature Trail. Be sure to begin conversation with the staff at Monacan Indian Village to find out what life was like here more than 300 years ago.

You will find all kinds of options for RV camping as you travel the Blue Ridge Parkway. Plan ahead and scope out where you’ll stay as you move south to north. Each RV park is unique and all have great amenities.

The best time of all awaits you in Shenandoah National Park. Take Skyline Drive for some breathtaking vistas. Don’t miss any one of the incredible overlooks. And don’t forget your camera! Cascading waterfalls in the park are a favorite and many come just to see them.

There is really no end to all the outdoor recreation, marvelous wilderness views and wildlife you can enjoy in Shenandoah National Park. You would think that this is the perfect ending for a perfect vacation. However, one more thrill is ahead. In Front Royal, you can stop to get a guided tour of the Skyline Caverns. This has been a wonderful adventure and you are welcome back again any time for a fun RV vacation.

Picture credits: The picture of the Blue Ridge Parkway is by the National Park Service.

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