Category Archives: Camping Sites & Stories

Jump In To This Years Family Vacation!

With summer time approaching fast and the count down to the end of school nears it may be time to start planning a family vacation. There are so many fun things to do with the family during those warm summer days. One of my family’s favorite things to do is rent a houseboat! Every year around the same time we get together a great group of friends and head to Lake Shasta in California. We usually take a week and have fun in the sun boating, fishing and swimming in the cool water.

Shasta is one of the many great places to take out a houseboat as well as enjoy many other activities. Lake Shasta offers visitors a chance to take the boat out for a spin, swim along the shoreline, camp, hike, fish and even tour the Shasta Caverns! Shasta Caverns is a short boat ride across the lake and a quick bus trip up the mountain. There in the mountain is a large selection of stalactites and stalagmites. It’s a nice easy walk through the caverns and a great way to spend a hot day, as the caverns are quite cold!

Shasta is fed by four rivers Sacramento, McCloud, Squaw and the Pit River. Most of the year the water is cold and the weather is too, but during the short summer months June through September the water warms up a bit and the weather…gets HOT! We’ve found the June and September are the prime months to visit. During our one trip in July we experienced 114-degree weather and the water was about 85, so even jumping in the lake didn’t cool you down. If houseboating is out of the budget, check out Lake Shasta’s beautiful campgrounds.

This year take the family out! Get the kids away from the television and mom and dad…turn off those cell phones. Enjoy the outdoors, family, friends and relax!

To learn more about Lake Shasta click here to visit their site for reservations and information.


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Camping That’s Not Exactly “Roughing It”

If your idea of camping is having a butler and all the amenities of home… The Resort at Paw’s Up in Greenough Montana, is the place for you! When you come camping at Paw’s Up your tent can include the following: A King size bed, en-suite master bathroom with heated floors and granite counters, a dining pavilion for everyone in your group with a fireplace and yes… even a butler! So the next time your spouse says “honey let’s go camping this summer…” you can reply “sure but Paw’s Up is where we’re going!”

For those that want luxury with a side of adventure, you can enjoy a 12-mile horseback ride into the beautiful Montana foothills to a smaller camp with large luxury tents. It’s not just camping it’s “Glamping”! The experience you’ll experience at Paw’s Up is truly glamorous camping.

Paw’s up is where “Nature is served on a Silver Platter”.


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Gulf Breeze Resort- Gulf Shores Alabama

If you’re looking for a great place to enjoy some time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, then Gulf Breeze Resort is your place. Gulf Breeze is a beautiful RV camp located in stunning Gulf Shores Alabama. Though Gulf Shores was the recent location of a tragic oil spill, reports have given the free and clear for visitors and locals to return and enjoy the white sand beaches and gorgeous tropical scenery.

Gulf Breeze is located a just a short drive North of the Gulf of Mexico. Besides the wonderful beaches that are a hop skip and a jump away, visitors can also enjoy the following:

-Outdoor Shopping
-Water Parks
-Golf (Regular and Mini versions)
-Fishing (shoreline & boat charter)
– Tennis Court
-Pool (Indoors and Out)
-and so much more

And this is just a handful of the fair weather activities to enjoy. When the weather turns chilly, never fear Gulf Breeze Read the rest of this entry »


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Camping with Your Dog

Camping with your dog can be one of the most fulfilling adventures the two of you can have. It feels so good to be with your favorite animal among all that nature has to offer. I especially like watching my dog let his instincts be his guide, as he teaches me to see the world differently.

But ultimately we are domestic creatures- we have our needs that nature can’t fulfill, and desires beyond the forests and plains. And since you are your dog’s caretaker, there are things you need to do to ensure your dog has as much fun in the wilderness as you do. Here are a couple of tips to help you along the way.

Read the rest of this entry »


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Old Time Family Fun Around the Campfire – Spooky Stories!

Old time family camping trips have got to be one of the best memory generating experiences in life. Choosing to leave the gadgets behind and really connect with your family, friends and nature is an unbeatable experience.  One of my very favorite family camping trip activities happens well after dark, when the camp kitchen has been tidied and secured and everyone is gathered around a crackling campfire – and the kids are asking “Now what?”

I’ll tell you what – good old fashioned ghost stories.  Funny-scary classic stories for the little kids, vintage hair raising horror for the teens, told after the little’uns have been safely tucked in their bedrolls for the night.

Just picture the scene, a soft summer night has fallen. The campfire flickers and pops, coals wink at marshmallows on sticks, everyone is comfortably gathered close to the fire and the storyteller. It’s time for scary stories!

Tips for campfire storytelling:

Speak in a slow, soft voice very slowly, so people have pay attention and listen carefully.

As you near the end of the tale, gradually increase the volume of your voice.

Most important trick – Pause before the punch line!
Throw in something unexpected at the end.

(Save these next tricks for the teens, little’uns could be too scared)

Hold a bright flashlight under your chin at the very last moment of your story and scream like the dickens
Recruit one of your fellow campers to jump up and scream at the end.

American Folklore has some really great old time campfire stories, my favorite is “Hairy Toes”


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Pinecrest Lake Resort In California, A Great Place To Camp

For years my family and I have been spending two whole weeks at Pinecrest Lake Resort in California. Pinecrest is a great campground with lots of great activities for the whole family.

I spent days renting paddleboats with friends, swimming, hiking around the lake and fishing. As a kid there was nothing better than having all the fun outdoor activities in one place. There was never a dull moment, never a time when I looked to mom and dad with boredom inquiring what to do next, there was always something new to try. We even spent one day out of the trip each year and hiked to Cleo’s Bathes. It’s a beautiful cascade of waterfalls hidden up on the ridge that we could swim in, and even slide down one of the falls. Mom and Dad had the pleasure of relaxing Read the rest of this entry »


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Camping Cooking Tips

It’s that time of the year- the trees are full, the grass is green and the weather is beautiful. What better reason to go camping than to enjoy the outdoors and the scenic wonders of nature!

A camping trip can be so much more enjoyable when the details are planned ahead of time. The folks over at published an impressive list of camping ideas and tips.

Some of the ideas from the list  that really stood out to me include:

  • To keep warmer–wear a hat to sleep in–80% of heat loss occurs through your head.
  • Head lamps or snake lights hung around your neck can provide a hands-free light source.
  • Always bring a roll of duct tape. It can be used for MANY things!
  • Use a throw rug or a piece of outdoor carpet in front of your tent to reduce the amount of dirt tracked in.
  • Check with the campground about security and quiet hours. Be respectful of others.

See the full list of camping ideas and tips here.


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Camping Tips 101

This quick video lists the top items needed for camping. Some of the items are basic but the video has a few valuable tips.

Using the flashlight that straps to your head is a great tip. This allows you to keep both hands free while navigating your campsite at night.  This is also a great tip because your less likely to misplace your light if it’s attached to your head!

Please tell us your camping tips… leave a comment below.

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