Nestled in the southernmost reaches of the Jefferson National Forest and not far from the Blue Ridge Parkway, Grayson Highlands State Park stands watch over Mount Rogers– Virginia's highest peak– and has access to some true wild Virginia treasures.
July 17, 2019
If you are blessed with a day of near perfect weather, you could easily be distracted from the hallowed grounds that you are about to explore. Chickamauga Battlefield, near Chattanooga, Tennessee, is the site of one of the hardest fought and bloodiest battles of the Civil War which makes the location perhaps more graveyard than anything else.
July 10, 2019
The crowning jewel on the western rim of Lookout Mountain, Cloudland Canyon cuts north-south through the sandstone of the Cumberland plateau on a rolling carpet of pine.
June 5, 2019
History, architecture, art, and a heaping dose of Southern charm make a day in Savannah an urban adventure everyone in your party will love. Time your day well and you can be on the riverfront in time for a second (or third) cup of coffee, then work up an appetite exploring this very walkable and affordable city.
June 3, 2019
Nestled in the crook of the far western reach of North Carolina, we stopped at Deep Creek Campground in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as a convenient one-night stopover on the way to Cloudland Canyon State Park, Georgia. Even though we only stayed a day, believe us when we say that you could easily make Deep Creek your basecamp and cook up a complete Smoky Mountain holiday without ever having to go any further.
May 28, 2019
If your travels have taken you through the "Old North State," you've likely driven by, through, or around a tobacco farm. The Tobacco Farm Life Museum pays tribute to this golden leaf crop that was largely responsible for rebuilding North Carolina after the Civil War. Tobacco continues to be the state's largest cash crop with almost 153,000 acres devoted to farming it.
May 5, 2019
Camping at Skidaway Island State Park is just the beginning of a great coastal Georgia family getaway. If you can manage to pull yourselves away from camp, Skidaway Island State Park offers convenient access to romantic downtown Savannah, the quaint beach town of Tybee Island, two lovely lighthouses, a historic military fort, easy nature hikes, boating, and fishing.
April 30, 2019
Just a few miles off of I-95 and well within about an hours drive of near 2 million people lies an art treasure for the senses. The Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park in the unassuming town of Wilson, North Carolina, is home to the art of an unassuming man who had a vision of extraordinary proportions.
April 22, 2019
Surprisingly remote, unexpectedly beautiful, and dripping with southern charm and Spanish moss, a trip to Hunting Island State Park will have you rethinking your impression of South Carolina and have you wondering what took you so long to come around.
April 9, 2019
What does a 39-day American road trip of 7,600 miles look like? The call to go to Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park and the Black Hills of South Dakota and everywhere in between was too loud to be denied. I wrote recently about the "how" of the trip, so now I'd like to include you in on the details of Part I - North Carolina to Kansas - where we camped, places we stopped, and things we saw. Hope you enjoy the ride and let it inspire you to make your own road trip adventure!
April 9, 2019
A savvy camper could easily make the case to ease into South Carolina's Edisto Beach State Park, make camp, string up some lights, and a hammock or two and call it a day. The beachfront location is hard to beat and a few days camping on the Atlantic Coast would do a lot to refresh your spirit.
March 28, 2019
There is oh, so much more to a great Florida family vacation than Orlando. Whether you are looking for something on the Gulf Coast, the Panhandle, or Atlantic, we've got seven great options that will introduce you to the other Florida. History, alligators, birding, beautiful beaches (of course), seashells, fighter jets, and a couple of great old forts just to name a few.
March 7, 2019
As soon as you make the entrance to Gulf Islands National Seashore, it’s not hard to imagine what it must have looked like to Spanish explorer Tristan de Luna in 1559. Bordered on the south by the Gulf of Mexico and to the north by Pensacola Bay, the gentle Gulf waters still caress the sugar white beaches and wind swept dunes. Only sand scrub oaks and sea grass protect this little quarter mile wide barrier island - just as they did 450 years ago.
February 27, 2019
I'll confess - I'm a huge Tolkien fan. In 'The Hobbit', Gandalf tries to persuade Bilbo to join an adventure. What's Bilbo's response? Rather similar to my initial thoughts about camping - "We are plain quiet folk and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner!”
February 19, 2019
There is a good reason that the Avalanche Peak Trail makes the short list of must do hikes on a visit to Yellowstone National Park. Situated on the eastern border of Yellowstone, the Avalanche Peak Trail is a deceptively short 5-mile roundtrip hike that'll have you forever asking first about elevation gain rather than distance.
February 8, 2019
When you think of great places to camp in Florida, we'd encourage you to throw into the mix Anastasia State Park. Proximity to Saint Augustine's waterfront, history, and charm might be the first draw, but it’s not the only attraction that makes this Northeast Florida destination a keeper.
February 2, 2019
Searching for manatees? You've come to the right place – Blue Spring State Park, one of the jewels of Florida’s state parks. Surrounded by arching live oaks draped in Spanish moss, the constant 72F spring-fed waters are a winter home for up to 500 manatees. Relax under a deep blue sky unfiltered by the haze normally associated with the southern East Coast. Winter in Florida - even the manatees seem to understand its magic.
January 26, 2019
As you approach Fort Clinch State Park, put aside the tense memories of traffic lights, strip malls, and fast food joints that lead up to the park gates, and start to relax as you travel down the three winding miles under a majestic canopy of live oaks draped in Spanish moss. If not camping, a six-dollar entry fee buys you a day of coastal swimming, birding, hiking, fishing, off-road biking, sharktooth hunting, and shelling.
January 13, 2019
Looking for the best camping on tropical Sanibel Island to escape your winter blues? The only game in town is the Periwinkle Park & Campground. A city within a city, Periwinkle Park & Campground is loaded with Florida charm and 50's kitsch. Think Main Street, USA meets Disney.
January 13, 2019
Nestled at the confluence of the Pamlico River and its namesake tributary, the fourteen campsites at Goose Creek State Park are spread out under a 90-foot canopy of longleaf and loblolly pines. Boasting five riverfront properties and nine generous and secluded inner sites, you'd be hard pressed to find another frontcountry camp that comes this close to a backcountry experience.
December 3, 2018
Looking for the best campground in Custer State Park, South Dakota? Reserve early and pitch your tent in six of the most charming creekside campsites. Not all of the nine campgrounds in the 71,000 acres of Custer State Park are created equal, and the same can be said of the sites in Grace Coolidge Campground.
November 28, 2018
Most campers will rightly say that even a bad cup of coffee on the trail is better than a good cup of coffee at the office. There is just something about that combination of fresh air, smoke from an open fire, and a steaming hot cup-a-joe.
November 7, 2018
Provisioning an expedition's electronic needs takes planning, testing, and a measure of patience. As a quartermaster, you'll have to orchestrate a balance between several competing interests - size, weight, cost, durability, and how mission critical the electronic item is to the overall endeavor. Deciding on the best mobile camping power supply (like the LifePowr A3), deserves an equal amount of consideration.
November 3, 2018
Everything you've ever heard about the iconic Blue Ridge Parkway is only made better with the turn of the seasons. October, with its cooler temperatures and lower humidity, ratchets up the vibrance of an already beautiful time of the year in western North Carolina.
October 23, 2018
Perhaps lesser known than its OBX cousins to the northeast, Carolina Beach State Park is a welcome end to the summer. Nearby Kure Beach is virtually empty, the crowds have dissipated, the no-see-ums are gone, and the Atlantic coastal waters are still bathtub warm.
October 17, 2018
The dramatic landscapes of the secluded South Dakota Badlands National Park serve as a backdrop of one of the most unearthly camping adventures you might ever experience. The prairie region's steep canyons and towering spires, its remoteness and geologic formations, all make this an extremely rewarding – and challenging – terrain to explore.
October 3, 2018
When you’re not worried about the weight of your gear – and you have many mouths to feed – then consider bringing this cookstove. The Coleman 2-Burner can cook up a full breakfast or dinner for eight in no time plus keep a pot of piping hot coffee ready in the wings.
October 1, 2018
If the forest moon of Endor has a twin on this side of the galaxy, it may well be the outback of North Carolina's Stone Mountain State Park. Tall, lush, and moist, you'll find enchantment among the silver firs, banks of waving ferns, and mountainsides bursting with rhododendron and blue bells.
September 30, 2018
If you've spent any time camping in North Carolina, you'll eventually find yourself at Croatan National Forest – and your first visit won't be your last. There are a variety of ways you can enjoy this wonder, and most of the time you'll have the place to yourself.
September 25, 2018