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Category: Tent Campgrounds

Bears, Boredom and Bullies

June 29, 2012 by · 1 Comment 

Bears, Boredom and Bullies

Each spring our family makes an annual pilgrimage into the wilderness. This year, like most, we selected a cozy campground that sits tucked away in a mountain forest as our base camp and settled in for a few days of hiking and exploring. Our campfire provides a relaxing atmosphere at the end of each day’s activities. Spring is the perfect time of year for our family. The weather is sunny and cool, wildflowers are blooming and showing off a thousand vibrant colors, and wildlife is out in abundance. The happy melodies of songbirds provide a wonderfully calming musical backdrop as we hike, stopping frequently to photograph the many splendors that the forest offers. Wild Animals Enjoy Springtime Too During the first day of our trip while hiking we enjoyed watching a pair of gray squirrels dancing to the music of a ruby-crowned kinglet as he roosted atop a lodgepole pine.  At lunchtime we made our way back to camp just in time to see a black bear lumbering his way through a nearby meadow,... [Read more...]

Hey Dad…Can We Go Camping this Weekend?

June 15, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Hey Dad…Can We Go Camping this Weekend?

There’s something about camping, from tent, tent trailer, and pop-up camper to diesel pusher and luxury fifth wheel trailer that makes it more than the sum of its parts. Hey, Dad, let’s go camping…to Arches National Park, Utah. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved You’re not just looking for a place to spend the night or weekend or to hide out from the rain—you’re buying into a lifestyle. It’s taking in the fresh air of the great outdoors. The RV lifestyle is about freedom, and it’s a complete 180-degree turn from the hectic pace of everyday life. When you arrive at your campsite it doesn’t matter if the Yankees lost a double header or the Cowboys were defeated in overtime. It’s is a relaxing pleasure to park in a beautiful location and go fishing, take a walk, or simply relax by the camp fire. Camping is a great way to get to know your family better and to meet new friends. Once you get away from all of those distractions at home, you have a great opportunity to really... [Read more...]

Bear Attack Reported at Arizona Campground

June 1, 2012 by · 2 Comments 

Bear Attack Reported at Arizona Campground

An Arizona woman was injured this morning (May 1) when a bear ripped a hole in the tent where she, her husband, and their dog had been sleeping at Ponderosa Campground in Tonto National Forest, just off Highway 260 about 10 miles east of Payson. Grizzly bear attacks tent. (Source: Thomas J/travelooce.com) The attack occurred around 4:30 a.m. After tearing open the tent, the bear reportedly stuck its head in and clawed at the 74-year-old woman, leaving her with bruises and a laceration on her scalp. She was treated at Payson Regional Medical Center for non-life-threatening injuries and released. The woman’s husband and dog were not hurt. A large adult bear had recently been seen hanging around the campsite dumpsters. A wildlife manager with Arizona Game and Fish Department visited Ponderosa Campground yesterday looking for the bear, but it was not found. A culvert-style trap was set. The wildlife manager talked to the campground host about precautions, and all campers were informed... [Read more...]

Get Back to Nature in Custer State Park

May 30, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Get Back to Nature in Custer State Park

Custer State Park in the Black Hills of South Dakota has unimaginable scenery, rustic lodges, cabins, and RV and tent campsites that are open year-round.  You’ll find a variety of offerings, including camping cabins, horse camps, primitive campsites, modern campsites and group camping facilities. Camping fees are collected daily and are based on the number of camping units in your party.  Each campsite at Custer State Park has a gravel or paved camping pad, a fire grate and picnic table. Electric hookups are available in most campgrounds and all but a few offer flush toilets and showers.  From Memorial Day to Labor Day, park staff give evening presentations at several campground amphitheaters.  These talks often give campers insight into the park’s history, wildlife and natural surroundings. Custer State Park’s free roaming buffalo have been known to occasionally wander into the campgrounds. These majestic—but wild—animals should be treated with respect and visitors should... [Read more...]

Campfire Safety Guidelines

May 29, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Campfire Safety Guidelines

All it takes is one spark for things to go wrong. Campfire Safety. Never leave a campfire unattended! Forest fires often start from campfires that were not put out completely. A carelessly abandoned campfire or a campfire built without safe clearance can turn a small fire into a dangerous and fast-moving blaze. Be sure to build your campfire in a way that does not endanger anyone or the surrounding forest. Check with local authorities on open-air burning restrictions and follow local burning regulations. Keep current on fire bans in the area. Enjoy a safe campfire by following these campfire safety tips: NEVER build a campfire on a windy day—sparks or embers from the fire could travel quite a distance setting an unintentional fire Watch the wind direction to ensure sparks aren’t approaching any flammable materials Build the campfire where it will not spread; well away from tents, trailers, dry grass, leaves, overhanging tree branches, or any other combustible Build campfires in... [Read more...]

Top 10 things Campers Should Know about Ticks

May 20, 2012 by · 3 Comments 

Top 10 things Campers Should Know about Ticks

There ARE more ticks in more places than ever before. Blacklegged ticks or Deer ticks Tick encounter rates are soaring, and experts are predicting 2012 to be one of the worst years for Lyme disease transmission due to higher than normal deer tick infection rates. Deer ticks also are known as blacklegged ticks in the U.S., sheep ticks in Europe, or Taiga ticks in Asia. Do you know THE BEST ways to keep yourself, your family, and your pets safe? Back in the day, we had ticks. Big, yucky American dog ticks. They usually crawled to the top of your head, you felt a lump, pulled the tick out, flushed them—or found some other form of revenge—and that was that. Usually no one got sick. Ticks were mostly just an annoyance, and that’s what people knew about ticks. American dog ticks are still around but these days, there’s another tick, a tiny blacklegged tick, smaller than a freckle. It’s also known as the deer tick, and it crawls up under clothes, latches on without much fanfare,... [Read more...]

DANCING WITH THE STARS

May 15, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

DANCING WITH THE STARS

Mary and Alan live just outside the city of Richmond, VA,  in a nicely manicured suburban neighborhood.  Alan works for the State Government and Mary works in Medical Records for a local hospital.  They have two children, a boy and a girl ages 9 and 11.  Both children, Bobby and Suzie, attend a local elementary school and stay at an after school daycare until their parents get home from their jobs. It was the typical busy Monday morning at the hospital for Mary as she entered a rising pile of patient information forms into her computer. Her closest friend at work, Karen Karnes, was babbling about how excited she was for the coming long weekend and their family plans to go camping at Big Meadows in the Shenandoah National Park. Camping?  Mary shook her head in wonderment as to why anyone in their right mind would want to go off into the woods and sleep on the hard, cold ground.  Thoughts of a camping trip she had made with her big sister some twenty years back when they ended up sleeping,... [Read more...]

Consider Vancouver Island!

March 31, 2012 by · 3 Comments 

One of my favorite summer destinations in the Pacific Northwest is Vancouver Island. We first visited this large island about fourteen years ago when our daughter was very little. We were new to the region, and  I was spending a fair amount of time doing research and talking to tourism representatives in British Columbia. Back then, everyone told me that Vancouver was great, but many of my contacts gave me a wink and a nod and urged me to visit Vancouver Island, too.  They urged me to go in the summer and bring the kids. Those tips were true insider information. I am so glad that I listened! When we first visited Vancouver Island, I picked Parksville as our destination. The guidebooks touted the large safe sandy beaches and a quiet atmosphere…Hmmm. That sounded perfect for a family with a toddler. Initially, we stayed at a fabulous beachfront resort known as Beach Acres. Located right on the water and  next door to Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park, this family friendly low... [Read more...]

Steep Cliffs and Towering Spires: Dead Horse Point State Park

March 30, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Steep Cliffs and Towering Spires: Dead Horse Point State Park

Dead Horse Point State Park is perhaps Utah’s most spectacular state park. The park lies on the same broad mesa as The Island in the Sky district of Canyonlands National Park. The meandering Colorado River 2,000 feet below Dead Horse Point. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved Dead Horse Point is a peninsula of rock atop sheer sandstone cliffs about 6,000 feet above sea level. Two thousand feet below, the Colorado River winds its way from the continental divide in Colorado to the Gulf of California, a distance of 1,400 miles. The peninsula is connected to the mesa by a narrow strip of land called the neck. From the overlook, canyon erosion may be viewed on a grand scale. This erosion process has taken approximately 150 million years. Much of it is caused by the river slicing down into the earth’s crust as land is forced upward. These powerful forces are still sculpting the fantastic shapes of the precipitous bluffs and towering spires. Vegetation and wildlife in this desert environment... [Read more...]

A Really Nasty Bug

December 28, 2011 by · 6 Comments 

A Really Nasty Bug

A winter-night’s dream finds me walking through the middle of a tall grassy field ablaze with warm sunshine, songbirds singing, and butterflies darting about.  Nearby is a brook overflowing with large rainbow trout hungry for the fly on the end of my line.  As the sun sets, we will dine on trout cooked over glowing campfire embers. . My dream excludes the reality of chiggers, ticks, mosquitoes, gnats, wasps, spiders, and biting flies also enjoying the habitat and dining on me as I reach out for my dream. Like it or not, we share the world with bugs and their presence can make our real life experiences a lot less pleasant if control measures are not taken. Adult EAB with wings open One insect, or bug, that has recently changed the landscape of at least fifteen eastern states and parts of Canada is the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), Agrilus planipennis Fairmaire – an exotic beetle that was first discovered in southeastern Michigan near Detroit in the summer of 2002.  By exotic, I mean... [Read more...]

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