Created with Sketch.
The RV Atlas Podcast
32 minutes | Sep 8, 2021
Campground Review! Four Mile Creek Near Niagara Falls, NY
Gretchen Holcombe from Boxy Colonial On The Road is back on The RV Atlas podcast this week and she is our guest blogger here as well! Check out her recent post and interview on the podcast to hear about her stop in Burlington, Vermont. And to hear about her awesome stop at Four Mile Creek State Park and Niagara Falls click on the media player above, or read here guest post below! Guest Post by Gretchen Holcombe **All photos by Gretchen Holcombe Niagara Falls is one of the world’s most spectacular sights…and it’s also one of its most crowded. Niagara Falls State Park welcomes more than 8 million visitors a year, and on a busy summer day it can feel like they’re all there at the same time. My husband and I had seen the falls before, but we were excited to make our first trip there with our kids this summer and more than willing to brave the crowds and to shell out money for quintessential tourist experiences like the Maid of the Mist boat ride. Four Mile Creek State Park But we were also eager to get a break from the nonstop action in the evenings, and we found the under appreciated Four Mile Creek State Park, just 20 minutes down the road from Niagara Falls, to be an excellent retreat. Four Mile Creek offers up 250 spacious tent and RV sites on the shores of Lake Ontario, about half primitive sites and half with electric hookups (potable water and dump stations are available). In addition to the big sites and quiet setting, we appreciated the bargain pricing: sites are just $24/night for electric, and $18 for dry camping. There are a lot of excellent sites to choose from here, but the ones in the 200 loop that overlook Lake Ontario are the pick of the campground, with enormous “backyards” and great views; look for the even numbered sites between 222 and 240. If you don’t have an RV with you, the park is popular with tent campers and also has six yurts available for rent. Niagara Falls State Park It’s an easy drive from Four Mile Creek to Niagara Falls State Park, and we spent lots of time there checking out the falls from all different vantage points. We parked on Goat Island (we were able to save the $10 fee by showing our pass from Four Mile Creek) and walked all around the area; there are several great places to admire the view, including Terrapin Point and Luna Island. You can walk or take the trolley from Goat Island over to the visitor center and to all the shopping and restaurants in town. The Maid of the Mist leaves from this area and takes you on a very wet trip out to the bottom of the falls; it’s a splurge at around $25 per person for a 20 minute boat ride, but it’s worth it for a view and experience you can’t get any other way. Some of our Niagara Falls plans were derailed both by the fact that the Canadian border was still closed to Americans thanks to COVID and by the very wet weather we had while we were in the area. But the silver lining was that this led us to find some great off-the-beaten-path destinations that we likely wouldn’t have seen otherwise. We spent one rainy morning at Niagara Power Vista’s visitor center, an excellent museum all about the history of and science behind using the falls to produce power. There are lots of hands on activities, a movie, and one particularly charming exhibit where Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison debate the merits of AC vs. DC power. The Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center is another excellent rainy day (or any day) stop. Niagara Falls’ proximity to Canada made it a natural Underground Railroad hub, and this small museum tells the stories of some of the enslaved people who passed through here on their way to freedom in engaging and creative ways. Our family never passes up a good fort, so we made a trip to Old Fort Niagara to dive deeper into the history of the Niagara Falls area. Old Fort Niagara is less than a ten minute drive from Four Mile Creek State Park, so it’s a must-see if you’re staying there. Its history goes back over 300 years and includes roles in assorted colonial wars, the Revolutionary War, and the War of 1812. Watch the film in the visitor center, and then take the brief guided tour out to the fort for an overview of the history before setting off to explore the original buildings on your own. We opted to skip the usual tourist fare available in downtown Niagara Falls in favor of couple of restaurants in the nearby town of Lewiston. We ate one night at The Silo, a fun spot right on the water. The menu includes sandwiches and burgers and local specialties like beef on weck. After dinner you can order ice cream at the historic caboose right next to the restaurant. Another night we stopped in the cute downtown area and enjoyed the highly creative burger menu (“Hot Tempered Elvis” with caramelized bananas and jalapeños, anyone?) and great selection of local beers at Cask + Cow. Huge thanks to Gretchen for sharing both of these reviews from her epic 27 day RV trip! See You at the Campground! –Jeremy The post Campground Review! Four Mile Creek Near Niagara Falls, NY appeared first on The RV Atlas.
34 minutes | Sep 8, 2021
Campground Review: Four Mile Creek and Niagara Falls, New York
Gretchen Holcombe from Boxy Colonial On The Road is back on The RV Atlas podcast this week and she is our guest blogger here as well! Check out her recent post and interview on the podcast to hear about her stop in Burlington, Vermont. And to hear about her awesome stop at Four Mile Creek State Park and Niagara Falls click on the media player above, or read here guest post below! Guest Post by Gretchen Holcombe **All photos by Gretchen Holcombe Niagara Falls is one of the world’s most spectacular sights…and it’s also one of its most crowded. Niagara Falls State Park welcomes more than 8 million visitors a year, and on a busy summer day it can feel like they’re all there at the same time. My husband and I had seen the falls before, but we were excited to make our first trip there with our kids this summer and more than willing to brave the crowds and to shell out money for quintessential tourist experiences like the Maid of the Mist boat ride. Four Mile Creek State Park But we were also eager to get a break from the nonstop action in the evenings, and we found the under appreciated Four Mile Creek State Park, just 20 minutes down the road from Niagara Falls, to be an excellent retreat. Four Mile Creek offers up 250 spacious tent and RV sites on the shores of Lake Ontario, about half primitive sites and half with electric hookups (potable water and dump stations are available). In addition to the big sites and quiet setting, we appreciated the bargain pricing: sites are just $24/night for electric, and $18 for dry camping. There are a lot of excellent sites to choose from here, but the ones in the 200 loop that overlook Lake Ontario are the pick of the campground, with enormous “backyards” and great views; look for the even numbered sites between 222 and 240. If you don’t have an RV with you, the park is popular with tent campers and also has six yurts available for rent. Niagara Falls State Park It’s an easy drive from Four Mile Creek to Niagara Falls State Park, and we spent lots of time there checking out the falls from all different vantage points. We parked on Goat Island (we were able to save the $10 fee by showing our pass from Four Mile Creek) and walked all around the area; there are several great places to admire the view, including Terrapin Point and Luna Island. You can walk or take the trolley from Goat Island over to the visitor center and to all the shopping and restaurants in town. The Maid of the Mist leaves from this area and takes you on a very wet trip out to the bottom of the falls; it’s a splurge at around $25 per person for a 20 minute boat ride, but it’s worth it for a view and experience you can’t get any other way. Some of our Niagara Falls plans were derailed both by the fact that the Canadian border was still closed to Americans thanks to COVID and by the very wet weather we had while we were in the area. But the silver lining was that this led us to find some great off-the-beaten-path destinations that we likely wouldn’t have seen otherwise. We spent one rainy morning at Niagara Power Vista’s visitor center, an excellent museum all about the history of and science behind using the falls to produce power. There are lots of hands on activities, a movie, and one particularly charming exhibit where Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison debate the merits of AC vs. DC power. The Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center is another excellent rainy day (or any day) stop. Niagara Falls’ proximity to Canada made it a natural Underground Railroad hub, and this small museum tells the stories of some of the enslaved people who passed through here on their way to freedom in engaging and creative ways. Our family never passes up a good fort, so we made a trip to Old Fort Niagara to dive deeper into the history of the Niagara Falls area. Old Fort Niagara is less than a ten minute drive from Four Mile Creek State Park, so it’s a must-see if you’re staying there. Its history goes back over 300 years and includes roles in assorted colonial wars, the Revolutionary War, and the War of 1812. Watch the film in the visitor center, and then take the brief guided tour out to the fort for an overview of the history before setting off to explore the original buildings on your own. We opted to skip the usual tourist fare available in downtown Niagara Falls in favor of couple of restaurants in the nearby town of Lewiston. We ate one night at The Silo, a fun spot right on the water. The menu includes sandwiches and burgers and local specialties like beef on weck. After dinner you can order ice cream at the historic caboose right next to the restaurant. Another night we stopped in the cute downtown area and enjoyed the highly creative burger menu (“Hot Tempered Elvis” with caramelized bananas and jalapeños, anyone?) and great selection of local beers at Cask + Cow. Huge thanks to Gretchen for sharing both of these reviews from her epic 27 day RV trip! See You at the Campground! –Jeremy The post Campground Review: Four Mile Creek and Niagara Falls, New York appeared first on The RV Atlas.
34 minutes | Aug 28, 2021
Campground Review! North Beach Campground: Burlington, VT
On today’s episode of the The RV Atlas podcast we are excited to have Gretchen Holcombe from Boxy Colonial On The Road back on the show to talk about part of her family’s epic summer road trip through New England! Gretchen loved her family’s stop in Burlington, Vermont and she really enjoyed using North Beach Campground as her basecamp! The campground itself was simple and rustic, but the location was FANTASTIC! To listen to Gretchen and Jeremy talk about North Beach Campground and some things to do in Burlington, Vermont, please click on the media player above or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your podcasts! To find out more about Burlington, Vermont and North Beach Campground click simply keep reading and check out Gretchen’s guest blog post right below!! All photos by Gretchen Holcombe! Guest Post By Gretchen Holcombe After a year of shorter trips close to home, our family of six was eager for a return to exploring farther afield. My in-laws 50th anniversary celebration on Cape Cod, Massachusetts gave us a great excuse to head for New England this summer, and we spent close to two months exploring Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and then farther west in New York and Michigan. Two parents, four boys, and three dogs in a 32 foot trailer has its challenges, but overall we had an amazing trip and are already planning next summer’s itinerary. Burlington, Vermont My oldest son loves to share geography trivia, so by the time we got to Burlington, Vermont this summer the whole family knew that it’s the “smallest biggest city in America.” In other words, it’s the smallest city in the United States that also has the largest population of any city in its state. And, indeed, Burlington feels like a quirky small town with the kinds of diverse offerings and resources that you’d expect in a much bigger city: museums, tons of restaurants and shopping, a university, and a beautiful lakefront setting. It’s a great combination, and Burlington quickly shot to the top of our favorite places in New England list. North Beach Campground It’s not often that you get the chance to combine urban camping and beach camping, but the city-run North Beach Campground offers exactly that. The campground is right in town and directly on the bike path that will take you the mile and a half or so to the downtown waterfront area, and right across that bike path is North Beach—a lovely spot on Lake Champlain where you can swim or kayak and then enjoy ice cream or dinner at the outdoor restaurant. The campground itself is fairly rustic, with grassy sites and bathhouses that could use some updating, but the sites are a bargain at $45/night for full hookups, $41 for water/electric, and $37 for tent sites. If you have a bigger rig, the full hook up sites are your best bet; the water/electric sites are jumbled together along narrow roads in the middle of the campground and looked pretty tough to get into. We had site 6, right along the main road through the campground, and found our site spacious and easily accessible. If you want a little more privacy, the other section of full-hookup sites, numbers 113–119 are on a quieter road. What to Do in Burlington, Vermont Echo Leahy Center:This is a kid friendly science museum by the water (a quick bike ride or a not as quick walk along the bike path from the campground) with the usual assortment of hands on activities, an adorable play area for younger kids, and a fascinating exhibit all about the science and history of Lake Champlain. Island Line Rail Trail: Burlington’s a great town for biking. If you didn’t bring your own bikes you can rent them downtown and then ride from there all the way to the causeway in Colchester that goes across the lake to Grand Isle. Ethan Allen Homestead: short but engaging tour of the home of this fascinating figure from early Vermont history Church Street Marketplace: pedestrian-friendly shopping and dining area in downtown Burlington; we especially enjoyed Phoenix Books and Lake Champlain Chocolates Vermont Lake Monsters: They love Champy, the legendary monster in Lake Champlain, so much in Burlington that they named their collegiate league baseball team after him. We had a great time cheering them on on our last night in Burlington, and our 8-year-old was star-struck getting Champy’s autograph. Shelburne Museum: we weren’t sure what to expect from the Shelburne Museum (about 20 minutes from Burlington), and it turns out that’s because you can expect a little bit of everything. The sprawling compound of historic buildings includes collections of everything from impressionist art to miniature circus figures to old printing presses. Make sure to ride the carousel and to tour the Ticonderoga steamboat (and watch the fascinating video about how they moved it from Lake Champlain to the museum grounds). There was so much to see here that we came back for a second day (admission is good for two consecutive days). Shelburne Farms: a lot of the regular programming here was canceled this summer because of Covid, but we were still able to meet the farm animals, hike on the beautiful grounds, and buy some delicious cheese at the farm market. Where To Eat in Burlington, Vermont Vermont Pub & Brewery: “Vermont’s Original Craft Brewpub” has a great downtown location and is the perfect spot to grab a beer after a bike ride. Splash at the Boathouse: tons of outside seating right on the lake and all the seafood dishes you’d expect. Creemees: if ice cream instead of beer is your post-bike-ride treat of choice, you can pick up some soft serve at this stand right on the bike path next to the lake. Thanks to Gretchen for being our guest on The RV Atlas podcast once again! See You at the Campground! –Jeremy The post Campground Review! North Beach Campground: Burlington, VT appeared first on The RV Atlas.
41 minutes | Aug 20, 2021
Ithaca is Gorges! Robert Treman State Park and More…
Today I am so excited to welcome a first time guest correspondent on to the show to give us a terrific campground review of Robert Treman State Park in Ithaca, New York! The RV Atlas crew visited Ithaca about 7 years ago during an amazing two week RV trip across New York State. We didn’t stay at Robert Treman State Park during that trip. But we have always wanted to camp there! On today’s episode of the RV Atlas podcast my friend Ellen Dominus Broude is going to take us to Robert Treman State Park. Ithaca is gorgeous! And Ellen brings this campground, the state park, and area to life for our listeners! I met Ellen on social media through The RV Atlas group. Like many of you, I sometimes complain about the role that social media plays in our lives. But then I stop and remember just how many awesome people I have met through the RV Atlas facebook group. Ellen is an amazing person–and I just knew that she would be so much fun to have on the show. Ellen and her husband own an adorable Airstream named Frida. I love following her account @fridatheairstream and I think you will too! 6 Things I Love About My RV Before I asked Ellen to come on the RV Atlas podcast, I also asked her to join me on my new GO RVing show–“6 Things I Love About My RV.” I am so glad she said yes! Check out her episode right below! To listen to Ellen and Jeremy talk about Robert Treman State Park and all of the best things to do in the Ithaca area–click on the media player at the top of the page. Or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your favorite podcasts! See You at the Campground! –Jeremy The post Ithaca is Gorges! Robert Treman State Park and More… appeared first on The RV Atlas.
29 minutes | Aug 16, 2021
10 Tips for Surviving a Multi-Family Trip in One RV!
Shellie Bailey-Shah is back on the show today for another great episode of The RV Atlas podcast! Today she is sharing 10 tips for surviving a multi-family RV trip in one RV! To listen to Shellie and Jeremy discuss all ten tips click on the media player above or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your shows! Here are her notes from the show! Background: We recently took a cross-country trip from Portland, Oregon to Tampa then across the south to Phoenix and back home to Portland. The middle leg — Tampa to Phoenix — we invited by brother, sister-in-law and two nephews to join us for their first ever RV adventure. The leg included 5 national parks and 2,500 miles of travel. That’s 2,500 miles with seven people and a dog in a 38-foot motorhome. Miraculously, we all survived. Keys to success: Each of these tips is discussed in detail on today’s episode of The RV Atlas! 1/Set expectations for the start when it comes to finances 2/Set expectations when it comes to responsibilities 3/Make sure the itinerary includes something for everyone 4/Do not overpack 5/Have a bag of tricks 6/Make sure everything has its place 7/Make sure everyone has a designated place to sleep 8/Consider the impact of long driving days, especially on younger kids 9/Plan to spend time apart when you land somewhere, especially important for teens 10/Have some grace with each other and exercise patience The post 10 Tips for Surviving a Multi-Family Trip in One RV! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
29 minutes | Aug 14, 2021
Campground Review: Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Guadalupe River
We are thrilled to have our friend Shellie Bailey-Shah back on the show this week for an awesome review of Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Guadalupe River in Kerrville, Texas! This was a short stop for Shellie and her family (and extended family!) on a long trip. Her entire crew enjoyed this Jellystone immensely! To listen to Shellie’s review click on the media player above or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you listen to your favorite shows! This podcast interview was based on an article that Shellie wrote for Kid Tripster! We will link to it after it has been posted! The post Campground Review: Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Guadalupe River appeared first on The RV Atlas.
26 minutes | Aug 9, 2021
6 Things I Love About My RV! Jeremy’s Brand New Show!
Today’s episode of The RV Atlas podcast is a behind the scenes look at the first four episodes of “6 Things I Love About My RV,” Jeremy’s brand new YouTube and IGTV show for Go RVing! Join Jeremy and Stephanie as they talk about the origins of the show and why Jeremy decided to strike out on his own for this 8 part series! Jeremy and Stephanie also talk about the first four episodes of the show and the people and RV’s that are featured! Episode One (Bill and Nancy) Each episode of 6 Things I Love About My RV is a fast, fun, and information mini tour of a different RV. Instead of walking through the entire rig and talking about each and every feature, this show focuses on each owner’s very favorite features! 6 of them to be exact! Episode 2 (Diane) Each tour is ten minutes or less and we talk about each owner’s favorite features AND their favorite aspects of RV Life! Where have they been? Where are they going? etc…etc… Episode 3 (Ellen) The first four episodes cover a variety of towable! But there are several motorized units in episodes 5-8! Each owner was so much fun to talk to and clearly, they really LOVE THEIR RV’s!! Episode 4 (Shire and Dave) I hope you check out each and every episode of 6 Things I Love About My RV and I hope that you take a listen to today’s episode of The RV Atlas podcast for a behind the scenes look!!! The post 6 Things I Love About My RV! Jeremy’s Brand New Show! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
28 minutes | Aug 6, 2021
Campground Review! Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches
Hey Boo Boo! Stephanie is back on The RV Atlas podcast this week for our review of Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches! On today’s episode of the podcast we give an overview of Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches, and talk about some fun things to do in this gorgeous section of coastal Delaware. This was a bit of a quick trip for us that we tacked on to a major baseball tournament for Max and Theo at the Cal Ripken experience in Aberdeen, Maryland. It was a tough tournament for the boys and we all really needed a break after the hot weekend of baseball. So the pools and waterslides at the Jellystone (and the nearby beaches) were a welcome respite for our boys–who were exhausted at the end of the tournament. This past spring a company named Blue Water bought this particular Jellystone and began to quickly make some new additions and improvements to the park. Stephanie and I have loved the Blue Water properties that we have visited over the years and we were both excited to take a look and see what they were up to here. We have visited Blue Water properties in the past (including Massey’s Landing and the Chesapeake Bay KOA) and loved them! When we first pulled into the Jellystone and checked into our cabin the boys were thrilled to hear the happy sounds of an ice cream truck driving around the campground and selling its wares! The boys were pumped because it was sooooo hot out and it had been all weekend long at the baseball tournament in Aberdeen. Stephanie could not come to the baseball tournament that weekend because of work, but she showed up at the Jellystone a few minutes after we arrived and we were all thrilled to see her and catch her up on the happenings at the tournament. After we all got unpacked and set up in the cabin we immediately took off for the pool and the brand new waterslides that Blue Water recently installed. I am pleased to report that the waterslides were both FAST and both young Wesley and Max and Theo approved of their velocity! After cooling off and hitting the water slides about 30 times each everyone was hungry and ready for dinner. Stephanie had actually been in the region near Jellystone Delaware Beaches a few weeks earlier for a conference and she really wanted to take us up to the beach for dinner! So she drove us all to the Big Chill Beach Club which is located inside Delaware Seashore State Park. This place had stunning views of the bay bridge and of the ocean. It is located right smack on the beach and the food was really, really good. It was Sunday night and we got right in without waiting. It felt good to be back together as a family after the long weekend of baseball craziness. After a relaxing meal by the water we headed back to the cabin and crashed pretty early so we could be refreshed and ready to go for a day of swimming at the pool and the beach! The rest of our stay went by quick–but we enjoyed every second of our time at the campground and in coastal Delaware Location of Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches serves as a great basecamp for exploring Coastal Delaware. It is about 20 minutes to Lewes, which is a fantastic beach town with lots of charm, great food, and shopping. If you go to Lewes make sure to grab breakfast at Eggcellent, because it is excellent! The Jellystone is also about 40 minutes from Rehobeth Beach–which has a much more boisterous and partly-like atmosphere–especially in the summer. So this campground is not right by the beach–but it serves as pretty good jumping off point for a day trip to the beach. The entire Delaware coast is gorgeous. So why have we never camped here before? Partly because we felt like it was too much like our home at the Jersey Shore. Turns out it is very different, and very much worth a visit even for Jersey beach folks like us! Cabin Sites and RV Sites at Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches This is a big campground with a long row of cabins and 8 long rows of RV sites. The cabins were good for families with bunks and had private bedrooms for mom and dad. We had a cabin with bathroom and kitchen, front porch, side fire pit and picnic table. It was close to the pool and short walk to the amenities. The manager, Bryan (who does a great job!) said they are adding new deluxe cabins next year. We think they will be a great new addition to the campground for those that don’t own RV’s. RV Sites were really nice here. They were fairly spacious with some shade and landscaping mixed in—they were all pretty even steven as well in terms of sizing. I liked the sites that backed up to the woods on the far side of the campground for some shade and more privacy. We enjoyed riding our golf cart up and down the rows and checking the RVs out. Some seasonal sites were mixed in and they looked nice and very well kept. Activities and Amenities There are a bunch of fun amenities at the front of the campground and a huge activity field for football or whiffle ball–or a game of catch. This is a very nice section of the campground with something for just about everyone. There is also a nice playground area with shaded seating nearby to hang out while the kids play. There are also basketball and volleyball courts that older kids will enjoy. The thing that Max and Theo loved the most was something I have never seen at a campground in over a decade of serious camping! The had a full size batting cage!!! MAX AND THEO LOVED IT!!!! We would all love to see this at more campgrounds in the future. We were lucky because we had all of our equipment with us from the weekend tournament. I am not sure if they provide equipment for those that come without. If they don’t, they should. There were lots of other activities and amenities here as well….. JELLYSTONE THEATRE FOR MOVIE NIGHTS HAY RIDES AN ACTIVITY CENTER GREAT FOR RAINY DAYS HORSHOES A NICE CAMPSTORE WITH REALLY FRIENDLY CUSTOMER SERVICE GOLF CART RENTALS Our time at Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches was short, but we would love to come back with our own RV and stay in one of the many nice sites at this pretty campground. And we will make sure to bring our baseball bats, our bathing suits, and a bucket of baseballs. That’s about all we would need for another epic summer adventure! The post Campground Review! Jellystone Park Delaware Beaches appeared first on The RV Atlas.
58 minutes | Aug 1, 2021
Northern California Beach Camping: Big Sur to Crescent City!
On this week’s episode of The RV Atlas podcast we are back with part two of our California beach camping series! In episode one our good friend Lauren Eber (from @afamwithavan on Instagram) was our guide and she gave us some incredible campground recommendations from San Diego to Santa Barbara. Along with each campground pick she shared great spots for food, fun, and adventure in those particular locales. Lauren is a California native and she knows the California coast intimately! Her campground picks and recommendations Northern California Beach Camping are absolute perfection. This two part podcast series should be on the top of your list if you are planning a California beach camping trip. On today’s episode Lauren is sharing her top campground picks from Big Sur to just below Crescent City! Jeremy also jumps in at the end of the show with his top two picks from the Crescent City area right outside Redwoods National and State Parks. This is another great episode of The RV Atlas podcast that you don’t want to miss! To listen to today’s show on Northern California Beach Camping click on the media player above or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your podcasts! For an overview of Lauren’s picks check out her show notes below this helpful map that pinpoints the campgrounds that we talk about in part two of our California beach camping series! Lauren’s Overview of Northern California Beach Camping Northern California has some of the most spectacular coastline in the world, accessed via the world famous Highway 1, which is on just about every list of America’s, or even the world’s, best road trips, and with good reason. Northern California beaches are very different from the So Cal beaches we covered in our prior episode. NorCal beaches are more about exploring the gorgeous scenery, quaint beach towns, redwood forests, vineyards, and farm-to-table cuisine than sunbathing and bodysurfing. Northern California weather is a lot cooler and foggier than SoCal, frequently overcast and windy. Expect 64 and foggy as the norm, rather than 72 and sunny. Dressing in layers is still key. The best months for sunshine are September and October. Lots of dramatic cliffs, rocky shores, tidepools, cold water, the occasional Great White Shark; often too rough for swimming, with a dangerous undertow, so don’t assume that “beach” means swimming. Some places it does, but look into it so you know what you’re getting. That doesn’t mean it’s any less fun or relaxing. Just different. Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park Big Sur has one of the most dramatic, beautiful stretches of coast in California. Redwood forests up against the towering cliffs above the ocean. The campground has 204 sites for RVs up to 32 feet. Some are in a towering redwood forest. Some are along the Big Sur River. All are incredible. My favorites are some of the sites in the 170s along the river, but it’s a real toss up with some of the sites on the opposite side in the 140s, in the redwoods, along a big meadow. No hookups, but lots of amenities. Restrooms with flush toilets and showers, wifi, and laundry. There is also a lodge in the park, with a small grocery store and cafe. The campground is not actually right on the ocean, and it doesn’t have ocean access, but it does have hiking trails with sweeping ocean views, and it is just a short (1 mile) drive to popular Pfeiffer Beach with the famous keyhole arch. If you’re up for hiking, don’t miss the 2-mile Pfeiffer Falls Trail, which leads to the Valley View Overlook with a tremendous view of the Big Sur River Valley, Pt. Sur and Andrew Molera State Park, and a view of Pfeiffer Falls, a 60-foot waterfall. Big Sur has some world-renowned restaurants and hotels, like Nepenthe, Deetjen, and the Post Ranch Inn’s Sierra Mar. Our level of cleanliness and our family’s volume (11) on camping trips usually strikes fine dining off of the itinerary, but we still love good food. Check out Café Kevah, the more casual café affiliated with Nepenthe and located on an outdoor terrace. Similarly, try Coast, a café with great wine, beer, sweets and a small “picnic style” menu, for spectacular views and a light meal or snack, and an art gallery to peruse once your belly is full. Francis Beach Campground at Half Moon Bay State Beach I couldn’t make a list of Northern California Beach Camping spots without at least one campground with sites right on the beach. Many of the NorCal beachfrong campgrounds are either tent only, like the incredible Kirby Cove campground in the Marin Headlands, with a grand total of 4 sites; or hike-in or bike-in, like the bucket-list-worthy spots in Point Reyes or Tamales Bay. But this campground in Half Moon Bay has it all—beachfront sites, quaint beach town, great food, and an agricultural crossroads. The campground has beautiful beachfront sites that accommodate RVs up to 40 feet. No hookups, but there is a good dump station. 52 sites. Flush toilets, pay showers, and wifi. But the highlight is the four miles of broad, sandy beaches. Look at the campground map to see which sites are in the front row along the beach. In the campground itself, you can play on the miles of sandy beach, watch the world-famous surfing, or take a walk on the Half Moon Bay Coastal Trail, departing from the campground. Swimming is not recommended, unless you are an expert or experienced surfer. The water is cold and rough. Half Moon Bay is an adorable beach town with a historic main street, craft breweries, art galleries, and farm-to-table dining drawing from the local agriculture. Pick up a souvenir at the San Gregorio General Store and browse the eclectic selection at Coastside Books to find your next great read. One of my favorite things to do in the area is see the massive elephant seal rookery at Ano Nuevo. Tours book up well in advance, so plan ahead if you can. https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=27613 You can hit the Pigeon Point lighthouse (built in 1872) on the way, for a fun stopover. You can also visit the nearby Harley Farms Goat Dairy to play with baby goats and eat amazing cheese. You won’t go hungry in Half Moon Bay. Do a beer hop of Half Moon Bay’s excellent breweries. Half Moon Bay Brewing Company is one of the oldest breweries on the coast, with a great menu, and a big outdoor patio with firepits. Relative newcomer Hop Dogma (opened in 2013) serves up award-winning German-style lagers and pilsners, among many others, and is dog-friendly and kid-friendly. And for the campers who can clean up more than my crew can, there is a Michelin-starred option in the Peruvian La Costanera. You’re more likely to find me having a lobster roll on the deck at Sam’s Chowder House, or fish and chips at Barbara’s Fishtrap. Bodega Bay RV Park Bodega Bay is a stunning location on the coast in the world famous Sonoma County, which is much better known for its wineries than its beaches, although both are spectacular. Bodega Bay RV Park is one of the oldest RV parks in California, established in 1967. It has 71 sites, 55 with full hookups and 16 with partial hookups. Sites up to 60’. Lots of amenities, including bocce ball, horseshoes, dog park, putting green, restaurant, and small store. The sites aren’t huge, so don’t expect a ton of privacy, but this spot is all about the central location. The RV Park is about a 30 minute walk from the beach, with easy access to the best that Sonoma has to offer. $66/night for a full hookup site. If you are a tent camper or don’t need hookups or amenities you might also want to look at the Bodega Dunes Campground in Sonoma Coast State Beach. The town of Bodega Bay is a charming fishing village. The Bodega Head Peninsula, jutting out from Bodega Bay, is a world-class whale-watching destination in the winter months, so if you want to do some whale watching, pack your warm layers and head out here January through April. It’s also a great location for sport fishing and kayaking. Contact the Bodega Bay Sport Fishing Center to inquire about fishing tours available when you plan to travel. And Bodega Bay Kayak rents kayaks and SUPs and provides clinics and suggested routes. Dining ranges from the Michelin-starred Terrapin Creek Café, to humble, but no less delicious, fishing shacks, like the Spud Point Crab Company, located right down by the working boats of Bodega Bay. Spud Point is famous for its chowder and fresh crab. Plan to bundle up and sit outside at the picnic tables. It’s BYOB, so pick up a bottle at Sonoma Coast Vineyards in town, or at any of the myriad wineries nearby. From Bodega Bay, you can day trip to the incredible Point Reyes National Seashore, featuring rocky headlands, sandy beaches, an old lighthouse, and so much more. Point Reyes is one of my favorite places in the world. And, of course, Bodega Bay is on the Sonoma Coast, known for its Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Sonoma Coast Vineyards is right there in Bodega Bay, or head to nearby Sebastopol for an embarrassment of riches, like Littorai, Pax Wines, and Merry Edwards. Or take a gorgeous drive up the coast to Fort Ross Vineyard and Winery on the coast in Jenner. Van Damme State Park, Mendocino Situated along a gorgeous stretch of cost in northern California, just outside the charming town of Mendocino. 63 sites for tents or RVs up to 35 feet. No hookups. It’s a very pretty campground on an open meadow, with nice tree cover. Short walk from the ocean. Wonderful hiking trails in the park, including the Fern Canyon Trail and the Pygmy Forest. Our older kiddo learned to ride a bike without training wheels riding around this campground loop! In addition to the beach and hiking in Van Damme state park, there is a ton to do a short distance from the park. Head north to MacKerricher State Park Beach near Fort Bragg for awesome tidepooling. Check out the Point Cabrillo lighthouse and museum on the way. And because I know I’m not the only one who passes the time as a passenger with knitting (this is for you, Ellen!), check out the fabulous Mendocino Yarn Shop in Fort Bragg, and while you are there, stop by the Princess Seafood Market and Deli to admire the day’s catch and pick up a picnic. Back in town in Mendocino, you can grab brunch, coffee, or a pastry at Goodlife Café & Bakery. Café Beaujolais is a good option for a nice, sit-down meal. If you don’t have kids in tow, check out Patterson’s Pub for “the best stocked bar north of San Francisco” and a classic pub menu to go with it. For beer lovers, the North Coast Brewing Company Taproom is a worthwhile stop. Fans of their more widely available beers, like the Foggy Day IPA and Scrimshaw Pilsner will enjoy being able to sample the limited reserve beers available in the taproom. The post Northern California Beach Camping: Big Sur to Crescent City! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
41 minutes | Jul 25, 2021
Eggs on the Hiawassee River Rally at Riverbend Campground!
Casita Dean May is back on the RV Atlas for the second week in a row with another jam packed episode! Last week Dean gave us a detailed review of the Townsend/Great Smokies KOA. This week we are packing in a double episode! Dean is here to review the Riverbend Campground in Hiawassee GA, and to tell us about his recent trip there for the Eggs on the Hiawassee River Rally! One of my favorite episodes we have ever done on the RV Atlas podcast was CASITA DEAN AND THE INVASION OF THE EGG PEOPLE. It was an amazing episode where Dean broke down the intel on all of the best egg camper makes and models. He also gives a 101 primer class on the egg camper lifestyle. If you are interested in learning about egg campers and egg camper culture, you should take a listen! On today’s episode of the RV Atlas Dean explains why he and his awesome wife Laura are so drawn to egg campers. Dean and I also discuss why egg camper owners are so rapid and why they have such a cult-like following. After that Dean gives us an awesome review of the Riverbend Campground in Georgia–home to the Eggs on the Hiawassee River Rally that Dean and Laura have attended several times. Here are Dean’s notes for the show!! To listen to Jeremy and Dean’s conversation, click on the media player above, or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your shows! Location of the Riverbend Campground Riverbend Campground is in the beautiful hills and mountains of northeast Georgia.The campground is about 10 minutes south of Hiawassee, GA. Hiawassee is just over 2 hours northeast (107 miles) of Atlanta, GA or just under 3 hours (138 miles) from Knoxville, TN. Despite only having a population of less than 1,000, Hiawassee is a nice little town located in a touristy and recreational area, so there are ample places to buy groceries, shop, go out to eat, and have fun. Type of Campground: Private Size of Campground:165 RV sites with the majority having full hookups and the remaining sites having electric and water. Physical Appearance of the Campground and Surroundings The campground is relatively flat surrounded by green rolling hills and small mountains. The beautiful Hiawassee River runs the entire length of the campground. Many sites have shade trees while the newer sites in the back of the campground have exposure to the sun. Oh, the bathrooms are nice, too! Price Range and Ease of Booking Reservations can only be made by phone and/or email. There is no on-line reservation system.Daily rate is $45.00 for RVs and $40.00 for tents.They also offer reasonable weekly, monthly, and seasonal rates. Site Details at Riverbend Campground All sites have electric (both 30/50-amp) and water. The majority have sewer as well.The sites are nicely graveled and have fire rings and picnic tables.The sites are well kept and nicely spaced. *Bonus – The campground offers a free honey wagon service for the electric/water sites. On Wednesdays, they will dump your gray tank. On Fridays, they will dump your black/gray tanks. Also, there are seasonal sites at Riverbend. They are well maintained, landscaped, and very attractive. Wi-Fi/Cell Phone Service: Cell phone service is fine. Wi-Fi in the campground is EXCEPTIONAL. Over the last few years, the campground lost access to cable. After a couple of iterations, they decided to add a Wi-Fi router to EVERY site. The best Wi-Fi we have ever had, perhaps superior to Anchor Down’s fiber optic Wi-Fi! The downside is that there is no cable; however, since Laura and I don’t have or want a TV in our RV, we love the premium Wi-Fi service!!! Activities at Riverbend Campground Organized Activities and Recreation (some activities are seasonal): Pool, Fishing, Tubing/kayaking/canoeing on the Hiawassee – provide your own equipment. Playground, Recreation area with a volleyball net. Holiday event weekends. Campground Store with rocking chairs and hand-scooped ice cream. Any Insider Details: Choose a river front site, particularly those closest to the front of the campground. Regional Highlights and Activities Local Attractions/Activities Bell Mountain Park and Historical Site/Hal Herrin Scenic Overlook http://www.townscountyga.org/bell-mountain-park—historical-site.html Unicoi State Park – https://www.unicoilodge.com/ Anna Ruby Falls – https://www.helenga.org/directory-item/anna-ruby-falls-visitor-center Helen, GA (Bavarian village) – https://www.helenga.org/ Brasstown Bald – https://www.fs.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsinternet/cs/recarea?ss=110803&navtype=BROWSEBYSUBJECT&cid=FSE_003738&navid=110240000000000&pnavid=110000000000000&recid=10542&ttype=recarea&pname=Brasstown%20Bald%20Visitor%20Information%20Center Highest point in Georgia at 4,784 Hiawassee – https://www.exploregeorgia.org/article/guide-to-hiawassee So much to do in and around Hiawassee, including Lake Chatuge, Hamilton Gardens, High Shoals Falls, etc. Restaurants & Brews Beer: Bacchus On the Lake (Wine & Craft Beer Shoppe) https://www.bacchusonthelake.com/ BBQ: Hawg Wild BBQ & Catfish House http://www.hawgwildbbqhiawassee.com/ Sundance Grill https://www.ordersundance.com/ Serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Casual. Very nice. Brewery with food (Taco Truck) Hiawassee Brew – https://hiawasseebrew24.com/ Love their tacos! Tilted Café – https://www.facebook.com/tiltedcafe/ Eggs on the Hiawassee Molded Fiberglass Camper Rally at Riverbend Campground https://www.facebook.com/groups/eggsonthehiawassee/ Hosted by John & Melissa Martin Much of the rally’s success can be attributed to the dedication and hard work of John and Melissa. Typically, the first weekend after Memorial Day Weekend. Rally will start on a Thursday and end on a Sunday; however, many campers arrive early and/or stay late with several campers staying a week or so. 2021 was the 6th Annual Eggs on the Hiawassee Laura and I have attended 4 of the 6 rallies only missing 2016 and 2020. We have the t-shirts to prove it! Eggs on the Hiawassee is one of the largest and best rallies that we attend. This past year, the rally included about 105 egg campers and about 180 people! Standard activities include: Fish Fry – sponsored by the campground on Thursday or Friday night. Potluck – Saturday night. Camper Showcase This rally is so large that it takes both Friday and Saturday to show campers. Egg campers in the front half showed their campers on Friday afternoon while campers in the back half of the campground showed their campers on Saturday. Camper Choice Awards were awarded in several categories. Bingo, Cornhole & Ladder Ball Tournaments. Saturday Morning Coffee & Donuts (sponsored – Oliver Travel Trailers) – often includes a presentation. This year it was on Harvest Hosts. Sponsorship – Rally is large enough that it receives sponsorship from several egg camper manufacturers, RV dealerships, and other RV related companies. Socializing Most of the time is wandering from campsite-to-campsite socializing. Campfires at night. One morning cooking bacon and eggs, it took me from 9:15 am to 12:45 pm just to fix and eat breakfast due to other egg campers coming by to visit. Many couples will gather to tour surrounding sights and/or go to breakfast/lunch/or dinner together. This rally is so popular it will be completely booked for the next year by the end of the current year rally. Despite our love for this rally and camping in northeast Georgia, we have decided not to return next year for this rally. We, typically, attend 4 to 7 rallies per year and we have decided to attend the 4B Rally on Lake Shelbyville in Illinois next year. The two rallies are at the same time. We will return to Riverbend Campground and the Eggs on the Hiawassee River Rally in the future! Dean’s Closing Comment: Northeast Georgia is one of our favorite areas to camp. Riverbend Campground is a Top 5 campground for Laura and me. The Eggs on the Hiawassee River Rally for molded fiberglass “egg” campers is one of our favorite rallies. All of this makes for a wonderful camping trip! The post Eggs on the Hiawassee River Rally at Riverbend Campground! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
49 minutes | Jul 18, 2021
Casita Dean May Reviews the Townsend/Great Smokies KOA
Casita Dean May is back on The RV Atlas podcast with a fresh review of the Townsend/Great Smokies KOA Holiday. Dean and his wife Laura consider this to be one of the top three campgrounds they have ever visited. Dean and Laura have spent over 200 nights camping in there Casita and they have visited over 10 states. So this is high praise based on their wide experience. Our family also loved the Townsend/Great Smokies KOA when we visited about seven years ago on a 36 night RV trip that brought us to both sides of the Smokies for about two weeks. We were writing our first book at that time and we recorded the podcast in the bedroom of the RV after the kids went to bed at night. I loved the podcasts that we recorded during that trip because the activities and amazing hikes that we talking about were so fresh in mind! Great Smoky Mountains National Park has an abundance of options for camping both inside and outside of the park and we have covered the best of the best of these campgrounds here. The Townsend/Great Smokies KOA is definitely one of them! We also recently invited our friend DJ Odom on the podcast to talk about his absolute favorite places to visit in Great Smoky Mountain National Park, and you can listen to that podcast or read about his favorites right here! And don’t forget to listen to today’s episode of the RV Atlas with Casita Dean May by clicking on the media player above! Or by subscribing to The RV Atlas wherever you get your favorite podcasts! See You at the Campground! -Jeremy The post Casita Dean May Reviews the Townsend/Great Smokies KOA appeared first on The RV Atlas.
43 minutes | Jul 13, 2021
12 RV Hacks from Marc and Julie Bennett of RV Love!
Marc and Julie Bennett from RV Love are, quite simply, two of the smartest and kindest people working in the RV content creation space today. Stephanie and I are huge fans of their first book Living The RV Life. When we heard that they had a brand new book coming out this summer called RV Hacks we just knew we had to have them back on the podcast again for a sneak peak! Marc and Julie first appeared on the RV Atlas podcast a few summers back on a terrific episode filled with boondocking tips. I can’t believe that it has taken two years to get them back on the show. But I am thrilled to have them back on to talk about RV Hacks. This book is absolutely jam-packed with amazing hacks in a wide variety of categories. The book has over 400 hacks that are separated into six different categories. On today’s RV Atlas podcast Marc and Julie share two super fun RV Hacks from each of the following six chapters: Driving Repairs and Maintenance Camping, Campgrounds, and Boondocking Cooking, Organization, and Storage Work and Technology on the Road Families, Kids, and Pets My conversation with Marc and Julie about RV Hacks was an absolute blast. So I hope you join in on the fun! To listen click on the media player above or subscribe to the RV Atlas wherever you get your shows! And more importantly make sure you grab a copy RV Hacks on amazon or at a bookstore near you. This book is an absolute blast and every RV owner should keep a copy in their rig at all times! I know we will keep a copy with us wherever our RV travels take us this summer and for years to come! The post 12 RV Hacks from Marc and Julie Bennett of RV Love! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
39 minutes | Jul 10, 2021
(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66 With Roadtrippers!
The journey on Route 66 from Chicago to Santa Monica is certainly America’s most iconic road trip. Route 66 is called the mother road–and for good reason. But this iconic road is a challenging road to tackle in many ways. Thankfully, our friends over at Roadtrippers have just released a quirky new guidebook that is packed with all of the insider intel that you will ever need to conquer the mother road. Roadtrippers Route 66: Chicago to Santa Monica breaks the mother road down into six legs: Chicago to St. Louis St. Louis to Tulsa Tulsa to Amarillo Amarillo to Albuquerque Albuquerque to Flagstaff Flagstaff to Santa Monica It feels fitting to me that the folks at Roadtrippers broke their guidebook down into legs instead of chapters. Each “leg” contains route highlights, featured campgrounds, featured accommodations, a playlist of songs that is specific to that leg, Then the “on the road” sections offer up all of the best recommendations for each of the major points of interest along that leg of the road. The featured campground recommendations for each leg make this the best Route 66 guidebook on the market for campers and RV owners of all kinds. Route 66 On The RV Atlas Podcast Stephanie Puglisi is one of the contributors to the Roadtrippers Route 66 Guidebook and she is back on the RV Atlas podcast today to talk about this brand new book! To listen to my interview with Stephanie about Route 66 click on the medial player above, or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your podcasts! Free Trial to Roadtrippers Plus with Purchase This Roadtrippers guidebook also comes with a free 30 day trial to the “plus” version of the Roadtrippers APP. This popular APP helps you plan cool stops on your next trip and even build trips together with friends using their collaboration tools. This new guidebook is also filled with links to additional Route 66 content on the Roadtrippers website that enriches the overall user experience even more. I can’t wait to get out on the mother road again for an epic adventure of my own. When I do, I’ll be sure to have a copy of this terrific book in hand. This book is filled with delightful surprises. Much like the mother road it depicts through words and images. The post (Get Your Kicks on) Route 66 With Roadtrippers! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
40 minutes | Jul 5, 2021
4 Amazing Campgrounds in the Pacific Northwest!
On today’s episode of The RV Atlas we are heading west for a review of four amazing campgrounds in the Pacific Northwest that you are going to want to add to your bucket list! The Pacific Northwest is my favorite geographical region of our country and the entire RV Atlas crew cannot wait to get back some day soon. Four years ago our family took an epic camping trip to the Pacific Northwest and spend 26 days doing a huge loop from Seatlle to Olympic National Park, to Mount St Helens to Coastal Oregon to the Redwoods, back into Oregon for Crater Lake and Odell Lake and then back to Seattle—it was such an amazing trip–my favorite trip ever. I’ve been dying to get back ever since–my wanderlust for the Pacific NORTHWEST IS VERY VERY STRONG. Kendra and Tyler from Campspot So on today’s episode we are heading back to the Pacific Northwest with our terrific first time guests Kendra and Tyler from CAMPSPOT. Kendra and Tyler (and their two cats, Sunny and Luna) travel full time in their AIRSTREAM creating content for Campspot. They do photography, video, writing, camp cooking content and so much more and their visual style and killer photo and video chops can be seen all over Campspot’s website. Kendra and Tyler have travelled all over the country and we had a lot of cool options for podcast episodes–but of course I asked them to do an episode about campgrounds in the Pacific Northwest—during the interview I meant to say that I felt like a kid in a candy shop talking to them about podcast ideas–but instead I said I felt like a kid in a candybox. What the heck is a candy box? I don’t know–but it doesnt sound like it holds a lot of candy! So just so you know–I meant a CANDY SHOP! Because Kendra and Tyler have been everywhere! And I hope to have them back on the show to cover more great campgrounds in other parts of the country. So let’s dive in and get four great recommendations for campgrounds in the Pacific Northwest from Kendra and Tyler. And huge thanks to Tyler for the amazing photos in this blog post! To listen to today’s episode of The RV Atlas about campgrounds in the Pacific Northwest click on the media player above, or subscribe to the The RV Atlas wherever you get your podcasts! Or just check out Tyler’s amazing photos and and Tyler and Kendra’s highlights in the notes below each campground! Northern California Ramblin’ Redwoods Campground & RV Park in Crescent City, CA photo by Tyler D. Way photo by Tyler D. Way Redwood National and State Parks Favorite trails: Lady Bird Johnson old grove trail (easy access loop trail) Tall Trees Grove Loop Trail- Permit required trail— mildly difficult, but old growth and river Coastal trail — easy and great for sunset views Scenic drive on the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway (off US-101) Klamath Beach – sea lions Crescent City: SeaQuake Brewing (great fries with an amazing parmesan dipping sauce) Battery Point Lighthouse — also great for sunset Oregon Craine Prairie RV Resort in the Cascade Lakes Region of Oregon photo by Tyler D. Way photo by Tyler D. Way Beautiful, remote campground in a wooded setting with full-hookups Just around the corner from the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway Lake access and lake-views of Mt. Bachelor, South Sister, and Broken Top mountains The campground offers boat, pontoon, SUP, and kayak rentals Short drives away from Odell and Crescent Lake which was one of the clearest lake I’ve seen Near some incredible waterfalls including Salt Creek Falls in the Willamette National Forest that featured an easy hike down to the base of the falls but what makes these falls so great is its accessibility with paved paths and the location being just off the highway 1.5 hours away from Crater Lake Side note – they do not have 50 amp service at the park so make sure to bring your converter if you need it Milo McIver State Park, Oregon photo by Tyler D. Way photo by Tyler D. Way (Milo K. McIver (1897-1962), member of the Oregon Highway Commission from 1950 to 1962 and strong supporter of state parks activities. ) From their website: Seasonal Camping Mid-March to October 31 44 electrical sites with water (one accessible Nine tent sites with water nearby Hot showers and flush toilets Three reservable group tent camping areas with water, flush toilets, and fire rings Three hiker/biker campsites with water, lockers, solar charging station and fire pit RV dump station What to do in the area: -Clackamas River- people go out on rafts, canoes, or kayaks. It’s got great fishing at Estacada Lake that has a boat ramp and an ADA fishing dock and again the Clackamas River- it has steelhead and Chinook salmon SUP and Kayak Rentals Tons of hiking and horse trails. We walked through the Clackamas Fish Hatchery that’s located at McIver Park and did the self-guided tour that takes you through the life-cycle of Chinook Salmon and steelhead Lastly, it has a “world-class” 27-hole disc golf course at the Riverbend Day=use area and discs are available at the park office to rent or buy. (Tell story of people playing disc golf and an eagle swooped by and we were super excited) Super close to Portland (only 33 minutes away from Portland with terrific views of Mt. Hood) Washington State Elkamp Eastcreek Campground in Mineral, Washington photo by Tyler D. Way photo by Tyler D. Way We were just there last week and we already miss it. located at the foot of Mt. Rainier and located just a 15 minute drive away from the Nisqually Gate of the National park, the only entrance of the park that’s open year-found 10 RV sites, 10 tent sites so it’s never super overcrowded – always quiet, wooded and private with each site being surrounded by beautiful, moss-covered trees the pacific northwest is known for Owners Tom and Brian make you feel so welcome and have an incredible campground store filled with your basic things but things like campfire cookbooks, coffee table books on camping for all the camping vibes when you return home, art supplies, and more. Located near Portland and Seattle. What makes this park unique are the miles of nature trails right on site through the meadow of wildflowers (depending on the time of year of course) and the old growth forests and the green woods of moss and ferns, the kinds of woods you’d expect from the evergreen state The post 4 Amazing Campgrounds in the Pacific Northwest! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
44 minutes | Jul 1, 2021
8 Insane DIY Van Builds from NJ Outdoor Adventures
Today on the RV Atlas podcast we welcome Patrick Botticelli from New Jersey Outdoor Adventures back onto the show for another great episode. Patrick has come on the show before to talk about his Airstream Bambi renovation among other topics. Today he is here to talk about 8 insane DIY Van Builds from his wildly popular New Jersey Outdoor Adventures YouTube channel! These are 8 of his most popular walk through tours and there is link to each of them below. So after you listen to our discussion about this vans make sure to watch the complete walk-throughs below! This is a great introductory podcast episode for anyone that is interested in DIY van builds. Patrick is an expert and he walks us through the different chassis options and the types of decisions that each of these van owners had to make! To listen to today’s episode of The RV Atlas click on the media player above! To check out the video tours of these amazing DIY Van Builds just scroll down and click PLAY! Gilbert and Martha Shane Daphne and Izzy Kevin and Taylor Home Builder from Connecticut George Morrow from Humble Road Sarah and Jess from Uphill Adventures Jonnie The Traveling Nurse The post 8 Insane DIY Van Builds from NJ Outdoor Adventures appeared first on The RV Atlas.
50 minutes | Jun 29, 2021
Camping at Daytona International Speedway with Brother Johann Schnell
Have you wondered what it would be like to dry camp at a major racing event like the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona International Speedway in Florida? I certainly have, even though I am not a hard core race fan. The idea of camping at Daytona International Speedway sounds very exciting to me. But getting there and getting the whole thing wired sounds pretty daunting to me. Thankfully, when it comes to insider details about camping at Daytona International Speedway, our friend and correspondent Johann Schnell has got us all covered. Johann has been camping at Daytona since 2014 when he started tent camping there with a group of his close friends. Seven years later the group is still going but they ditched the tents and dry camp in style in their own (or rented) RVs. According to Johann…. My group of close friends are car guys. One of them was getting married and instead of typical bachelor party, he asked for something different. We came up with camping at Rolex. Started in 2014 and the original crew still remains strong. Each year we might have extra friends joining the core group. We did it in tents for 3 years and when I got my camper, we changed to RV sites. My friends began renting RVs and one even bought an Ambulance and converted it to a camper for this one year. To say that they love this annual tradition would be an incredible understatement. On the latest episode of The RV Atlas podcast Johann is sharing all of the ins and outs of camping at Daytona International Speedway. To listen to Jeremy and Johann talk about how to get a site, the pros and cons of each area, and tips for dry camping at Daytona International Speedway, click on the media player above or subscribe to The RV Atlas podcast wherever you get your shows! Or just take a quick glance at Johann’s notes that he used for the show! Thanks to Johann for joining us for another great episode and sharing all of his best insider intel! Daytona International Events With Camping Main events: Rolex 24 hours (January), Daytona 500 (February), Coke Zero 400 (August) Secondary events: Roar before the Rolex, Daytona 500 Qualifying Non-racing events: Jeep Beach (National Jeep gathering), Welcome to Rockville (Concert Festival), Challenge Daytona (International Triathlon racing series) All these events last multiple days, which means camping at the track is part of the fun and super convenient. Tips for Getting a Site When Camping at Daytona International Speedway Daytona generally offers a range of options that can be understood as follows: Inside the track complex – Infield camping Boardwalk and Park Place to the race The closer to the track, the more expensive. They sell them in zones/types, think of neighborhoods. The tent people will be together, the few with electric, the ones near a part of a track (for example the Horseshoe turn), the ones near Lake Lloyd. Outside of the track (still within the Daytona Complex) – Geico Park West A long walk or a tram ride into the infield Also has zones, for example the ones closer to the tram, or the area for tent camping only. Daytona provides the right of first refusal to campers that stayed the year prior. This makes it challenging for the first timer, but it allows for groups to know they can book their annual trip. Tickets right now for the Rolex aren’t available, because we are in the renewal period for existing campers They used to limit popups to actual RV sites and not in the tent area, but over the lat 2 years we see more popups among the tenters. Definitely no RVs allowed on the tent and car areas. Camping is open to the ticket holder from Monday before the race to Monday after the race. Most people really begin showing up on Wednesdays as they are typically 4 day events leading up to the main one. Infield site are upwards of $900, Geico Park West RV sites range between $150-300 and car/tent site are $40. These prices are for the week. (these prices are Rolex, Jeep Beach camping in the infield cost me $150 for 4 days with electric hookups) The average RV site is big enough for a fifth wheel and it’s truck, or a big motorhome. Tent sites are big enough for a 6 person tent and 1 car to go into the spot. Pros and Cons of Different Camping Sections Infield Pros In the Action You could build a platform or carefully go up on the RV roof and have great views More social as many people walking by to and from different corners of the track Infield Cons Costly and maybe challenging on selection. Noise level. Dealing with traffic to come in and out of the track, particularly the day of the race and the day everyone leaves. Geico Park West Pros Affordable and easier to get spots Less Noise Easier to go out to the city for food and groceries Geico Park West Cons Lots of walking Diminished feel of being in the race It doesn’t have the views of being inside Dry Camping Advice for Daytona International Speedway Get a generator or rent it with the camper if they have that option. Don’t worry about noisy ones because they are the majority anyways. Very few sites have electric hookups. Found out the hard way that the electric posts are 50a only (in Daytona) Don’t worry about bringing water because they have water stations that you can fill your fresh tank on the way in. Do bring a container to fill up your fresh tank easily, if you need to. There are mobile RV repair people and mobile RV dump services. The latter run around $50 for their service. The track can be windy, careful with the awning and camping mats. Fire pits are allowed, they also allow to dig a hole and use the hole as a pit. Bring gas cans to fill up your generator. And bring cables and locks for those and the generator. If you tent camp, there are mobile shower trailers available for these areas. These are also heated, which is nice in the winter. Food and Supplies at the Daytona International Speedway Apart from packing like a regular RV trip, the track doesn’t have a camp store so be prepared to run out for supplies The Home Depot is across from the track’s Geico Park West entrance and that is extremely handy. That Home Depot has an endcap dedicated to RV common needs. This was handy when I learned that the electric post only has 50a. Publix and Walmart are a short drive away, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Target are close by, too. Must eat places: Bethune Grill and their honey sauce wings, it’s a must for us when we go there. The Daytona Taproom this was featured on Man vs. Food, great dive. How Johann Camps at Daytona International Speedway We book 4 sites that are together (2 and 2) and make a giant square. Sometimes we sublease one of the sites to a friend of a friend. Most of the time we have 3 campers and then one site for our vehicles. My friends often rent 1 camper and share it between 3 guys. Campsites open a few days ahead, but we typically come in on that Wednesday and stay through Sunday. As guys come in, my camper will have the basics for food, we’ll go to Publix/Walmart and as a group buy supplies and split the tab. We’ll also go out to eat for at least one meal a day as the track food is what you would expect at a sporting event. Once the race starts on a Saturday afternoon, they run for 24 hours, so that is when we walk around the track and look from different vantage points. Sunday morning we’ll do breakfast at the camper and then pack up to leave the campers ready and then watch the race some more. HUGE THANKS TO BROTHER JOHANN SCHNELL for sharing such amazing information about camping at Daytona International Speedway! The post Camping at Daytona International Speedway with Brother Johann Schnell appeared first on The RV Atlas.
39 minutes | Jun 25, 2021
William Coffin Coleman and The History of the Coleman Company
Our guest on today’s episode of The RV Atlas is Terence Young, the author of Heading Out: A History of American Camping, a delightful book about America’s real favorite pastime. Terence is also Professor Emeritus of Geography at California State Polytechnic University. I read Heading Out about two years ago and I have wanted to have Terence on the RV Atlas podcast ever since. The book is packed with possible topics for podcast episodes and I could probably have Terence on the show for a hundred different topics. But I decided to talk to him about the history of the Coleman Company first. As many of you know, I am a classic Coleman fanatic, and own quite a few stoves and lanterns from the 60’s and 70’s. I wrote about my Coleman obsession here and in the pages of ROVA Magazine. Terence’s book also has a fascinating section about the founder of Coleman, William Coffin Coleman, and the birth of the iconic Coleman Company, the most famous camping company in our country’s history. So having Terence on the show to discuss W.C. Coleman and the origin of his namesake company seemed like an obvious topic for a conversation on the podcast! On today’s show we head back to the 1920’s to learn about an ambitious young businessman that started out by bringing light to business owners, and accidentally stumbled into the camping equipment industry. In a sense–he created the modern camping equipment industry. William Coffin Coleman was a fascinating character and Terence brings him to life in this great interview on today’s episode of The RV Atlas! You can listen to the show by clicking on the media player above, or by subscribing to The RV Atlas wherever you get your favorite podcasts! Hope you take a listen and hope to see you at the campground! -Jeremy The post William Coffin Coleman and The History of the Coleman Company appeared first on The RV Atlas.
30 minutes | Jun 20, 2021
Jellystone Luray with A Camper and a Camera!
Jellystone Luray is, quite simply, one of the best family campgrounds in the country. The RV Atlas crew visited about 6 years ago and we absolutely loved it! You check out our original review here. We love that this campground offers an off-the-hook resort experience with views of Shenandoah National Park in the distance. Shenandoah is one of the most underrated national parks in the country, and the gates are just minutes away from Jellystone Luray. To read a great list of things to do in Shenandoah National Park, please click here! On today’s episode of the RV Atlas we are talking to our great friend Bill Sferrazza about his recent trip to Jellystone Luray. Bill is the brilliant photographer behind @acamperandacamera on Instagram. He is also part of the dynamic duo behind @disneyimagemakers. This is an amazing Instagram account about all things Disney. To listen to Bill’s review of Jellystone Luray and here about the cool hikes he did in Shenadoah National Park, click on the media player above or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your podcasts! Happy Father’s Day everyone! The post Jellystone Luray with A Camper and a Camera! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
37 minutes | Jun 17, 2021
Our Return to Lake George and Moose Hillock NY
The spring of 2020 was a crazy difficult time for all of us, right? We had to cancel several of our early and mid-spring RV trips because of Covid restrictions–and because we really did not have a grip on what was happening in the world. Cancelling those trips was sad and difficult to do. But we were also profoundly aware that, in the grand scheme of things, so many people were suffering at that time. Having to cancel an RV trip or two was a very small thing. Something not worth complaining about. But by Memorial Day of 2020 we were ready to go camping again–and restrictions in New Jersey and the surrounding states were in the process of being lifted. So we decided to keep our reservations at Moose Hillock NY and hitch up and head out for our first RV trip of the pandemic. I am thankful to the owners of Moose Hillock NY for how they handled the situation at that time. Before we decided to go we vacillated quite a bit about going. During that window of hesitation I called Moose Hillock and spoke to Ed (one of the owners) about what their cancellation policy was at that time. He basically told me to do whatever I felt was best for my family and we could cancel and get a refund at any time. I am really grateful that he did that because it gave us some time to think through things before we decided that we HAD TO GET OUT OF THE HOUSE AND GO CAMPING! To listen to last year’s RV Atlas podcast about our trip to Moose Hillock NY and the Lower ADK’s please click here. Pandemic Camping in the Lower ADK’s It was a very different kind of camping trip to say the least. The rest stops on the way up to Moose Hillock NY were like ghost towns and there was no traffic going from NJ to NY. When we arrived at the campground the pool and playground were closed and there was yellow caution tape wrapped around the slides and swings. That tape was eventually pulled off by an ambitious youngster who wasn’t having it–and I have to say–I didn’t report him because I understood his primal urge to PLAY. Even though we did not allow our kids in our friend’s RV and vice versa we managed to have a great time in the great outdoors. We swam in Lake George, hiked, and enjoyed the natural beauty of the lower ADK’s. Side note–looking back at my pandemic beard in the picture above I am not sure whether it was a source of pride or shame! Returning to Moose Hillock NY for Memorial Day 2021 We Reserved The Same Site Both Years! Fast forward a year later and we were back at Moose Hillock again for another Memorial Day campout! Thank the good lord the pandemic appeared to be ending, and the world seemed to be healing and returning to normal. AND THE AMAZING POOL AT MOOSE HILLOCK WAS OPEN! Day time temperatures may have been in the 50’s, but that did not stop us (the boys) from swimming every single day. Thank God our good friend Andee brought a little space heater for the cabana we rented so we could warm up (carefully!) after every swim. I also made sure that my Brutrek French Press was full of coffee for a post swim Cup of Joe. I love cold weather swimming and warming up with hot coffee afterwards. Just to be clear, I’m no Wim Hoff–the pool was heated to 81 degrees after all! Thank God the sun also decided to BURST OUT Monday night–and we were staying until Tuesday afternoon. So we had a glorious 3 hour window where we (the boys:) swam while the pool was almost empty. One of the water slides was not attended for a period of time so the boys went up and down five thousand times each at a very rapid clip! Downtown Lake George This year we were also pretty excited to visit downtown Lake George. Just about everything was closed when we visited last year! We spent a really fun day shopping and we had a great lunch at “The Lagoon” right downtown. The boys found Funko Pops at Heroe’s Hideout and Stephanie bought a nice bottle of Gin at Lake George Spirits. Somehow or another, I didn’t end up buying anything, which is pretty unusual for me. Downtown Lake George was more of a tourist trap than I thought it would be, and many of the shops were pretty cheesy. But there was plenty of cool stuff there too. We also did a one hour boat tour that was amazing–partly because the sun was out and it warmed up a bit. Sitting on the top deck and taking our sweatshirts off in the sun felt, really, really good. Pilot Knob Ridge We also knocked out an amazing hike right near downtown called Pilot Knob Ridge. This is a super fun family hike that is 3.8 Miles Roundtrip. It boasts two major features and lots of shade and decent variation. The first major stop for a break is a large gazebo with views of Lake George that makes for a great snack and photo stop. Heartier hikers will definitely want to keep going and hike to the waterfall. We got to the trailhead early (I think we left Moose Hillock at 7:30)–and we were able to park both pickups in the tight little trailhead parking lot. We were worried about being to get back out later–but we took a chance and parked and hit the trail. When we finished the hike a few hours later the parking lot was jammed and it was really tight getting out of our spots–but we did it without incident or accident. GREATEST RV ATLAS LESSON EVER—-GET TO POPULAR TRAILHEADS EARLY FOR PARKING! The Lake George Outlets We did have one rainy afternoon that was a bit too wet for outdoor adventure. So we went to the Lake George outlets that are just a short drive away from Moose Hillock. First stop was L.L. Bean and then the bookstore. I did not like the bookstore because they did not have any of our books in stock! #jokingnotjoking We also visited the New Balance store so mom and dad could both get some new kicks–and sadly we missed the Merrell Store. I’m putting that one on the list for next time! I was disappointed to learn that the Coleman Outlet had recently closed because I LOVE all things Coleman. But I did see a store called Artie’s Camping and More–so of course I had to check it out. When I walked in I immediately realized that it looked like the Coleman outlet in Lancaster County that I visited with my buddy Phil and his family a while back. It was also filled with Coleman gear. Not much of the stuff I like. But Coleman stuff from top to bottom. Clearly Artie bought all of the Coleman stuff from the outlet and took over the store in the same exact spot. So why was all of the good stuff (like lanterns and camp stoves) gone? The collector’s clearly got there before I did. Bean’s Country Store The other trip highlight worth mentioning was Bean’s Country Store. This place has amazing Rueben, pizzas, cheeses, bacon, local gifts, local newspapers–and more! It was that kinda place. Max said he had the best pork roll, egg, and cheese sandwich he has ever had in his life. They call it Taylor Ham there–but we forgive them… The weather was not great during our Memorial Day trip to Lake George. But we still managed to work around it and have so much fun. We have never had a bad camping trip anywhere. After almost 12 years its hard to believe that I can say that with absolute honesty and authenticity. But it’s completely true. See you at the campground!! –Jeremy The post Our Return to Lake George and Moose Hillock NY appeared first on The RV Atlas.
39 minutes | Jun 12, 2021
Southern California Beach Camping: San Diego to Santa Barbara!
Summer is in the air here at RV Atlas headquarters and we are looking forward to lots of beach days, camping trips, and baseball games. And to be quite honest–we have been talking quite a lot about planning a big Southern California Beach Camping road trip with our boys for spring or summer 2022. So in other words–we are California Dreamin’ in a pretty major way! So the timing seemed perfect to have our friend Lauren Eber back on the show to talk about California beach camping and five great campgrounds from San Diego to Santa Barbara! Lauren is a lifelong California native and she loves to travel with her family in their van named “Yayho.” You can follow their adventures @afamwithavan on Instagram. She has been on the RV Atlas podcast several times and has helped us create some amazing content. Check out two of our favorite episodes with Lauren right here: #Vanlife with Kids Planning a Camping Trip to Zion National Park To listen to Lauren and Jeremy talk about Southern California beach camping and hear Lauren’s detailed reviews of 5 great campgrounds from San Diego to Santa Barbara, click on the media player above, or subscribe to The RV Atlas wherever you get your shows! For a brief overview of our discussion on the Southern California Beach Camping please check out Lauren’s notes right below! All pictures compliments of Lauren Eber. Lauren’s Opening Thoughts on Southern California Beach Camping Most of the beach campgrounds are part of the California State Park system, reservable on reservecalifornia.com, but there are also some local, federal, and private options. They are very popular and the best bet is reserving well in advance, but it is possible to snag last-minute cancellations and walk-ups. Weather tends to be mild, but be prepared for wind, bring plenty of sunscreen and water, and dress in layers. It’s often foggy and cool in the morning, sunny midday, and chilly again when the sun goes down. Anytime you are camping within striking distance of the beach, it’s hard to go wrong, but these are some of our favorites between San Diego and Santa Barbara. South Carlsbad State Beach Campground, Carlsbad (San Diego) On a bluff with gorgeous views overlooking the ocean. Only a little bit of shrubbery or a tree separating the small sites, but the views are worth it. Walk down long staircase to the beach, or there is a wheelchair ramp available. Over 200 sites, a few with full hookups. RVs up to 34’. Carlsbad Camp Store is being completely revamped to include a café, beach rentals, outdoor seating. Beach rentals and general store are open I believe, and check back to see about the café, but it looks like it will be great. https://www.windmillfoodhall.com/ In the meantime, grab takeout from Pelly’s Fish Market & Café, within walking distance, or drive 5 minutes to the Windmill Food Hall, with about 14 vendors in the landmark Carlsbad windmill building. https://www.windmillfoodhall.com/ Near one of our favorite So Cal family attractions, Legoland Moro Campground in Crystal Cove State Park, Newport Coast On a bluff with incredible views across PCH from the coast. 58 sites; 28 for RVs up to 38’ with water and electric hookups; really nice bathhouses with new, clean showers and toilets Short walk and tunnel across PCH to beach. Great network of hiking trails departing from campground. “Short loop” is just about 3 miles with some elevation gain; great ocean views, better if you do the loop counter clockwise. Pick up a map from the park rangers. Eat on the beach at the Crystal Cove Shake Shack (date shake is a favorite), or for a more formal sit-down, walk over to the Beachcomber. Thornhill Broome Campground in Point Mugu State Park (Northern Malibu) Point Mugu State Park is in northern Malibu, on the border between LA and Ventura counties. Has three campgrounds. Thornhill Broome is our favorite spot for Southern California Beach Camping. Basically no amenities (a few water spigots and some porta potties), just a long parking lot along PCH, but it is toes in the sand camping, pull right up onto the sand, and have a spot with a picnic table and fire ring and your own little stretch of beach. Some highway noise, but it’s mainly drowned out by the sound of the ocean. RVs up to 31’ but no hookups, no dump station. 69 sites, but lately not all of them have been open. Tons of hiking and mountain biking trails you can walk to from the campground. Try the Scenic and Overlook Trails loop, departing from Sycamore Canyon campground across PCH. About 3-3.5 miles. https://www.hikespeak.com/trails/scenic-overlook-trail-loop-point-mugu-malibu/ Explore Malibu area. Malibu Pier has food, shopping, beach rentals. Tidepools at Leo Carillo. For my personal favorite place to eat, take a ride down the coast a bit, to Malibu Seafood https://malibuseafood.com/ Carpinteria State Beach Campground Big campground, over 200 sites, some of which have water and electric hookups right on the sand, which is very rare. Premium sites in the Santa Rosa loop are best for RVs, and premium sites in Santa Cruz loop are best for tenters who prefer to be away from RVs. One of the most expensive state beach campgrounds, with premium hookup sites going for $80/night. An authorized concessionaire, 101 RV Rentals, will deliver an RV for you to stay in if you don’t have your own. The Beachhouse at the neighboring Carpinteria City Beach rents kayaks, SUPs, and other beach gear. Head south to Rincon Point to watch the surfers, and if you get inspired, take a surf lesson from Surf Happens surf school. There are several surf shops in Carpinteria as well. For food, take a walk over to the main drag in Carpinteria, Linden Avenue. There are lots of options. A few favorites are The Spot, for classic burgers and beachy seafood, and Tacos Don Roge. Ocean Mesa at El Capitan Canyon The one private campground I’m recommending, this one isn’t immediately on the beach, but the El Capitan Canyon Resort is so special, it had to make the list for great Southern California Beach Camping spots. The campground for tents and RVs has canyon views and is beautifully landscaped. RVs up to 50 feet with full hookups, wifi, fire pit, picnic table. https://www.oceanmesa.com/ The property also has a huge assortment of cabins and yurts. Pool, playground, hiking trails, massages, wonderful café and general store with outdoor eating area and lawn games. Short walk/hike to a llama and goat farm. Wine tasting. Easy walk to the beach. Change things up and head inland to Santa Ynez. Take your pick of the wonderful eateries and wine tastings in the region, hit Trattoria Grappolo in town or head to the Hitching Post, made famous in the movie Sideways. Follow Lauren Eber and Her Family @afamwithavan Thank you so much to Lauren Eber from @afamwithavan for taking us on this amazing Southern California Beach Camping road trip from San Diego to Santa Barbara! And also huge thanks to Lauren for sharing her photos with us. Who else is California Dreaming’ ?? The post Southern California Beach Camping: San Diego to Santa Barbara! appeared first on The RV Atlas.
Terms of Service
Do Not Sell My Personal Information
© Stitcher 2021