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Category: Scenic Byways/Historic Routes

Exploring North Bay

August 21, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Exploring North Bay

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, we recently attended a family reunion in Northern Ontario.   We knew well in advance of this trip and decided to stop at a campground in North Bay so that we can cut the trip in two while we drove there.   So we reserve at a local campground – Dreany Haven – for a night and went to explore the town were my husband lived a few years while growing up.   The tradition is to show the places my husband lived/worked to our kids whenever possible when we go to places like this.   So it was a given to drive around that afternoon with them.   We saw the houses where he lived, the place where his parents owned a butcher shop (now a marketing business), and the structure of the old Burger King (now gone unfortunately) where he used to lived.  In the end, he decided to bring us to the waterfront so we can walk a bit before going back to the RV. Before we headed to the playground that was spotted immediately by our kids, my husband led us toward the marina... [Read more...]

Learning history while rving

July 30, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Learning history while rving

Do you take the time to learn more about the history of the area you are in when you are traveling with your family? We try as much as we can. But right under our nose – at the campsite where we are parked – there was some history to discover. Actually, I knew about it. It has been 10 years since we started parking our RV at Logos Land Resort on highway 17, in Cobden, ON. We knew an historical discovery had been made there but I never thought of writing about it. This discovery is linked to the travels made by Samuel de Champlain. Who is Samuel de Champlain? Well Samuel was born around 1570 in France. He was a gifted man who became an explorer, map-maker, write and governor of New France. Starting in 1603, he made twelves voyages to New France. He is credited with starting the first permanent colony at Quebec City. Apparently in 1605, at Port-Royal, Nova Scotia, Champlain started the Order of Good Cheer in order to avoid his men to get bored and restless on long winter nights. Each... [Read more...]

Small Town Americana: Where History Comes Alive

July 30, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

By Laura M. Kidder, Rand McNally Rand McNally, a Good Sam travel-planning information partner, loves to celebrate small towns. During Rand’s summer Best of the Road contest, folks discuss and vote for their favorite communities across the country. In a series of articles created just for Good Sam, Rand highlights the Americana that makes small towns fun, friendly, flavorful, patriotic—and beautiful. A road trip across America is as much about timelines as it is about maps. White-clapboard Colonials surround New England village greens; quarry-stone Victorians dot Midwestern whistle stops; earthen pueblos line Southwestern town streets. Some communities do more than just preserve their historic architecture—they also preserve and showcase the culture that brings history to life. Here are a few picturesque Colonial, antebellum, and frontier towns where lived-in history meets living history. To see what people are saying about other beautiful, historic small towns and to vote... [Read more...]

Mount Washington Traffic Increasing

July 27, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Mount Washington Traffic Increasing

New Hampshire’s Mount Washington has the reputation of being “Home of the world’s worst weather”. Originally called Agiocochook by native Americans, the mountain boasts some of the planet’s most severe weather, and retains the world record for wind speed, 231 mph © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved Severe storms, including snow, can happen at any time of the year. The combination of severe winds, cold, and wetness can exhaust the strongest hiker. Mount Washington is the highest peak in the White Mountains of New Hampshire—and in the Northeast—and is therefore a very popular attraction for RVers and other sightseers and hikers. As a result the most widely used trails can be quite crowded, and however you climb the summit will have crowds, many having come up by the Cog Railway or the Auto Road. Mount Washington Cog Railway The beauty of the mountains and the thrill of ascending the Northeast’s highest peak are just as enchanting today as they were in 1869, when... [Read more...]

Outdoor Recreation as an Economic Engine

June 30, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Outdoor Recreation as an Economic Engine

Millions of Americans and Canadians take pleasure in the pursuit of enjoyment in the outdoors. Sabino Canyon is a natural desert oasis located in Tucson’s Coronado National Forest and is home to spectacular desert landscapes and abundant wildlife. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved But we rarely consider the economic impact of the outdoor recreation industry on local communities and the entire country. Newly released information from three separate and diverse studies provides a revealing look at the outdoor recreation industry as an economic engine that employs millions of Americans and Canadians and contributes billions of dollars to the economy. These studies were commissioned or conducted by the Outdoor Industry Association, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, and the National Park Service. The Conservation Economy in America, commissioned by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and conducted by Southwick Associates, reports the economic impacts of direct investments into... [Read more...]

Inscription Rock: El Morro National Monument

June 13, 2013 by · 2 Comments 

Inscription Rock: El Morro National Monument

“Paso por aqui, el adelantado Don Juan de Oñate, del descubrimiento de la mar del sur a 16 de Abril de 1605.” El Morro is Spanish for headland or bluff. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved Translated, the inscription proclaims: “Passed by here, the expedition leader Don Juan de Oñate, from the discovery of the Sea of the South the 16th of April of 1605.” While Oñate’s inscription is the oldest Spanish carving found on El Morro, he was not the first Spaniard to see the mesa. In March 1583, Diego Pérez de Luxan, chronicler of an exploring expedition led by Antonio de Espejo, recorded in his journal that the party had camped at a location he called El Estanque de Peñol (The Place at the Great Rock). However, no record of the expedition’s passing has been found on the mesa. People had been carving messages on Inscription Rock in the high desert of northwestern New Mexico for centuries before de Oñate, the first Spanish Conquistador to organize a colony in New Mexico, came... [Read more...]

Buying a Digital Camera: Remember the Cat and the Fox

May 6, 2013 by · 1 Comment 

Buying a Digital Camera: Remember the Cat and the Fox

Aesop’s fable, “the Fox and the Cat”, the fox boasts to the cat of its clever devices for escaping its enemies. No matter how technologically advanced a camera is, it still needs a photographer setting its dials, pressing its buttons, and pointing it at something interesting. Photo above is Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved “I have a whole bag of tricks,” he boasts, “which contains a hundred ways of escaping my enemies.” “I have only one,” said the cat. “But I can generally manage with that.” Just at that moment they heard the cry of a pack of hounds coming towards them, and the cat immediately scampered up a tree and hid herself in the boughs. “This is my plan,” said the cat. “What are you going to do?” The fox thought first of one way, then of another, and while he was debating, the hounds came nearer and nearer, and at last the fox in his confusion was caught up by the hounds and soon killed... [Read more...]

Sequester Delays National Park Openings

April 23, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Sequester Delays National Park Openings

If you are planning on an early camping trip to one of our many federally funded National Parks, it will be a good idea to check and see if the campgrounds are open.  You may also find a delay in the opening of visitor centers and picnic areas. The sequester that recently kicked in is already having a significant impact on the Shenandoah National Park on the Skyline Drive which runs from Afton Mountain to Front Royal in Virginia.  Other National parks, such as Yellowstone, are also cutting back and delaying campground openings and removal of snow from park roads that allow access. Shenandoah National Park is delaying the opening of campgrounds from 1 to 4 weeks depending on their location and normal visitation numbers.  They will also be cutting back on seasonal hiring and eliminating some programs. All of this is due to a 5% reduction in funding.  For a park that has a $12.5 million dollar budget, this translates to $625,000 in cuts. One of the major programs designed to improve the... [Read more...]

Visiting Prince Edward County

April 21, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Visiting Prince Edward County

One of the beautiful place you can visit in Ontario is definitively Prince Edward County.   The place is renowned for its sand dunes but there is more to this region that you can imagine.    Prince Edward County is located in Southern Ontario at the eastern end of Lake Ontario.   It is an island community less than 270 square miles with more than 500 square miles of shoreline.   Over 100,000 visitors visit this region of Ontario every year. The most popular attraction is Sandbanks Provincial Park which attracts most of the visitors.  Sandbanks Provincial Park also organized explorations for their visitors.  We went to an exploration to see what kind of plants and bugs we could find in the area when we were there a few years ago.  However, as I mentioned above, there is more to this area.   If you take the time to explore the country roads you will come through historic towns and villages, farms and vineyards, artists’ studios and antique shops which are located along the... [Read more...]

More Parks with Creative Accommodations

March 15, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

More Parks with Creative Accommodations

You don’t need to drive a recreational vehicle to enjoy the RV resort experience. Kate s Lazy Desert Vintage Airstream Hotel: Yellow Stripe Hairstream Just mix one or more icon symbols of freedom and adventure on American highways with a creative mind. Add in a generous helping of awe-inspiring scenery, and you have a man-made curiosity and a one-of-a-kind resort. In an earlier post, the Good Sam Team selected five top RV Parks with creative accommodations. In today’s post I report on two additional resorts with non-RV accomodations— an Airstream motel and Drive-in Airstream and RV park. Kate’s Lazy Desert Airstream Motel Fans of the B-52s might be inspired to roam — if they want to — all the way out to the Mojave Desert. That’s where the lead singer of the quirk-pop act has brought her bee-hived sensibility to a new Airstream hotel that opened in November, 2012. Co-owned by B-52s vocalist Kate Pierson, Kate’s Lazy Desert invites visitors to “rocket through the wilderness”... [Read more...]

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