The Great American Road Trip

Ah, the great American road trip.

Monument Valley © Rex Vogel, all rights
Monument Valley © Rex Vogel, all rights

It’s a rite of passage, a combination of nostalgia, discovery, and misadventure ideally set against an ever changing landscape, iconic sights, and weird and wonderful oddities.

The beauty of the road trip lies in its simplicity: Little more is needed beyond a recreational vehicle, road maps, and a trusty campground directory for a Kerouac-worthy journey.

Vogel Talks RVing has boiled the planning down to several essential considerations.

The Route

How much time? Desert or forest? Seaside or lake? Mountains or canyons? Big cities, country routes, or a bit of both?

Guides abound for trips along the classic U.S. routes—California’s Coastal Highway, Route 66, Blue Ridge Parkway, Grand Circle Tour, New England Fall Foliage Tour.

If you want a unique itinerary, there are plenty of resources to help design a journey that leaves room for unexpected adventure while taking in sights you don’t want to miss.

Paisano Pete, the giant roadrunner sculpture in Fort Stockton, a true Texas icon. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserve
Paisano Pete, the giant roadrunner sculpture in Fort Stockton, a true Texas icon. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserve

Or, if you prefer a data-driven route, Randy Olson—a graduate student in the Computer Science Program at Michigan State and the guy who mastered the art of searching for Waldo—has planned the ideal U.S. road trip. His 13,699-mile-route is the shortest way to visit a national park, national monument, historic site, or natural landmark in each of the lower 48 states. As with so many things in life, the joy of finding Waldo is in the journey, not the destination.

Any itinerary should leave room to sample America’s rich and nutty menu of roadside attractions.

We’ve broken the route into two helpful categories: the classics and oddities.

The Classics

Some of the U.S.’s most iconic sights are road trip staples. Grand Canyon National Park, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Yosemite National Park, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Yellowstone National Park, Zion National Park, Arches National Park, Acadia National Park. And if they’re not classics yet, they should be.

The Oddities

Hidalgo (Texas) is the "Killer Bee Capital of the World" and proud of it. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserve
Hidalgo (Texas) is the “Killer Bee Capital of the World” and proud of it. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserve

The highways are lined with examples of weird and wonderful oddities.

The town of Winslow, Arizona parked a flatbed Ford on a corner of the old U.S. Route 66, in homage to the song “Take it Easy”, made famous by The Eagles.

The World’s Tallest Thermometer (Baker, California), World’s Largest Roadrunner (subject of intense rivalry between Fort Stockton, Texas and Las Cruces, New Mexico), World’s Largest Killer Bee (Hidalgo, Texas), and World’s Largest Bottle of Ketchup (Collinsville, Illinois) all prove that where it counts, America’s roadside attractions are number one.

Some sights of roadside America defy classification, the handiwork of eccentrics with a singular vision, land to spare, and a knack for self-promotion.

There’s The Thing, an attraction of indescribable weirdness preceded by a miles-long billboard campaign that all but forces cars off Arizona’s Interstate 10.

Also The Mystery Spot of Santa Cruz, California; Cadillac Ranch, Amarillo, Texas; Carhenge of Alliance, Nebraska.

The Wigwam Village Motel stands adjacent to Route 66 in Holbrook, Arizona, and draws a lot of business from nostalgia buffs.

Antique cars parked along Wigwam Village Motel in Holbrook, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Antique cars parked along Wigwam Village Motel in Holbrook, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Salvation Mountain, a religious sculpture made from adobe, straw, numerous fascinating and colorful objects, and thousands of gallons of paint covers a hill in the southern California desert. This unique masterpiece is located at The Slabs, a former U.S. Marine training base that attracts eccentrics and snowbirds for off-grid camping.

These places often leave you with more questions than answers. Why is this here? Doesn’t matter. The best attractions prove what another American classic put so well: If you build it, they will come.

Worth Pondering…

As long as I live, I’ll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing. I’ll interpret the rocks, learn the language of flood, storm, and the avalanche. I’ll acquaint myself with the glaciers and wild gardens, and get as near the heart of the world as I can.
— John Muir

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Good Sam Announces Top RV Parks for Golfers for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top Parks for Golfers for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top Golfing-ShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Parks for Golfers from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

These RV parks provide challenging, fun-filled golf courses for RVers who seek out great links on their travels.

Some of the RV parks on this list feature golf courses and driving ranges on their property; others are located in regions with several nearby golf courses. In all cases, these parks are up to par when it comes to attracting folks who are always ready to tee off.

Highlights of this list include:

  • Some RV parks attract golfers in part because of their proximity to world-renowned courses. Eagle View RV Resort at Fort McDowell is located just two minutes from the We-Ko-Pa Golf Club, ranked by Sports Illustrated as one of the Top 10 New Public Golf Courses in the World.
  • Parks that offer links within the resort include Pueblo El Mirage Golf and RV Resort, which boasts a 72-par course designed by golfing champion Fuzzy Zoeller.
  • RV/Golf travel packages help some of these RV parks attract golfing customers. Mallard Creek Golf Course & RV Resort, for instance, offers packages for stays as long as a month that include unlimited golf on the resort’s course.

Facts about Golfing RV Travelers

By 1900, The Jekyll Island Club (Georgia) membership included the Rockefellers, Morgans, Cranes and Goulds and represented over one-sixth of the world’s wealth.  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
By 1900, The Jekyll Island Club (Georgia) membership included the Rockefellers, Morgans, Cranes and Goulds and represented over one-sixth of the world’s wealth. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Since 1980, the number of golfers in the United States has grown by 50 percent, with more than 30 million enthusiasts hitting the links.

There are approximately 15,500 golf facilities in the U.S., many of which are in or near or within RV parks.

In 2012, golfers played 490 million rounds on U.S. courses, up 5.7 percent from 2011

Top RV Parks for Golfers

Arizona
Eagle View RV Resort at Fort McDowell, Fort Mcdowell
Pueblo El Mirage Golf & RV Resort, El Mirage

California
Emerald Desert RV Resort – Sunland, Palm Desert
Pomo RV Park & Campground, Fort Bragg

Florida
Grand Lake RV & Golf Resort, Citra
The Glades RV Resort, La Belle

Michigan
Signature Motorcoach Resort at Bay Harbor, Bay Harbor

Missouri
Mark Twain Landing, Monroe City

Montana
Fairmont RV Park & Campground, Anaconda

Oregon
Mallard Creek Golf & RV Resort, Lebanon

Texas
Parkview Riverside RV Park, Concan

Winter weather is close to perfect in Palm Springs and the other desert resort cities in the Coachella Valley. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Winter weather is close to perfect in Palm Springs and the other desert resort cities in the Coachella Valley. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Washington
Lake Pleasant RV Park, Bothell

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

Golf is the closest game to the game we call life. You get bad breaks from good shots; you get good breaks from bad shots—but you have to play the ball where it lies.

—Bobby Jones

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Good Sam Announces Top Scenic RV Parks for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top scenic Parks for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top-Scenic-ShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Scenic Parks from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

These special parks are situated in some of the most attractive destinations in North America.

While putting together the list, the Good Sam RV Travel Guide’s editors and consultants included parks whose landscaping in many cases rivals the stellar landscapes of the surrounding areas.

The highlights of this list include:

  • For some parks, wildlife viewing is a key part of the guest experience. At Eagle’s Rest Campground in Valdez, Alaska, guests are frequently treated to glimpses of eagles gliding over the campground, with spectacular mountains, waterfalls, and views of Prince William Sound serving as the backdrop.
  • Some RV Parks strive to make their landscaping design as beautiful as the surrounding area. For example, Indian Waters RV Resort in Indio, California, boasts sprawling grass and desert vistas along with ponds and towering eucalyptus trees that harmonize with its surrounding desert landscape.
  • Many RV parks serve as jumping off points to scenic excursion. At Lake Mead Village on the shores of sprawling Lake Mead in southern Nevada, guests can go on sightseeing tours or hike nearby trails to take in some of the spectacular surrounding scenery.

Facts About Scenic RV Travel

Sculpted, chiseled, and twisted red rock formations more dramatic than most others we have seen dominate the Valley of Fire State Park's 42,000 acres. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Sculpted, chiseled, and twisted red rock formations more dramatic than most others we have seen dominate the Valley of Fire State Park’s 42,000 acres. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

According to USA Today, the most scenic place in the United States is Sedona Arizona, followed by the view of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from Mount Washington and the Upper Mississippi River.

DigitalCameraWorld.com advises photographers to take the time to get the right shot of scenery. Travelers should get out of the RV, find the optimal position and, if possible, use a tripod.

When planning a vacation based on scenery, travelers are advised to factor in the season. For example, trips to New England during the fall season are dramatically different than summer trips to that region.

Top Scenic RV Parks

Alaska
Eagle’s Rest RV Park & Cabins, Valdez

California
Indian Waters RV Resort & Cottages, Indio
Santa Nella RV Park, Santa Nella

Kansas
Deer Creek Valley RV Park Llc, Topeka

Nevada
Lake Mead RV Village, Boulder City

New Mexico
USA RV Park, Gallup

North Carolina
Fort Tatham RV Park, Sylva

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

The RV/MH Hall of Fame showcases the growth, history, and accomplishments of the recreational vehicle and manufactured housing industries, with displays and restored units dating back to 1913. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
The RV/MH Hall of Fame showcases the growth, history, and accomplishments of the recreational vehicle and manufactured housing industries, with displays and restored units dating back to 1913. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

A lake is the landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature.

It is earth’s eye, looking into which, the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.

—Henry David Thoreau

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Good Sam Announces Top RV Parks for Food Lovers for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top RV Parks for Food Lovers for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top Food-Lovers-ParksGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of RV Parks for Food Lovers from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

The RV parks on this list are located in regions known for distinctive local cuisine or in areas that host popular food festivals.

From RV parks in fertile farming regions to campgrounds in sophisticated cities, the list of Top RV Parks for Food Lovers is a virtual smorgasbord of culinary styles and tastes.

Highlights of this list include:

  • For some RV parks, providing excellent culinary service is part of the customer experience. At Michigan’s Thunder Bay Resort, guests can partake in Elk Viewing Dinner Ride Package, in which gourmet dinner is cooked on two antique wood cook stoves and served in an rustic setting.
  • Some resorts cultivate their own food. Nevada’s Wine Ridge RV Resort for example, serves vintages produced from the vineyard and winery located on the property. In addition, the resort’s Symphony Restaurant has earned five-star ratings in a number of food guides.
  • Other parks offer the full resort experience. At Pechanga RV Resort in Temecula, California, RVers can play a round of golf on the Journey golf course and stop by the award winning Journey’s End restaurant for a delicious meal while enjoying scenic views of the course

Facts about food-loving RV travelers

Weikel's Bakery, La Grande, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Weikel’s Bakery, La Grande, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A survey by RVAdvice.com revealed that 86 percent of RVers try the regional dishes when they travel.

Fifty-six percent of those sampled say they’re willing to travel up to 25 miles for a good meal, while 32 percent said they’d trek up to 50 miles to satisfy their taste buds

Food festivals such as the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California and Maine Lobster Festival attract many RVers eager to try new flavors.

Top RV Parks for Food Lovers

British Columbia
Hazelmere RV Park & Campground, Surrey

California
Pechanga RV Resort, Temecula

Connecticut
Seaport RV Resort & Campground, Mystic

A perennial favorite of barbecue lovers is Smitty's Market in Lockhart, Texas. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
A perennial favorite of barbecue lovers is Smitty’s Market in Lockhart, Texas. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Michigan
Thunder Bay Resort, Hillman

Nevada
Wine Ridge RV Resort & Cottages, Pahrump

North Carolina
Asheville Bear Creek RV Park, Asheville

Texas
Austin Lone Star Carefree RV Resort, Austin

Utah
Salt Lake City KOA, Salt Lake City

Wisconsin
Hidden Valley RV Resort & Campground, Milton

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

Café Des Amis in historic downtown Breaux Bridge hosts a world famous Zydeco Breakfast every Saturday morning and a spectacular Sunday brunch served all day. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Café Des Amis in historic downtown Breaux Bridge hosts a world famous Zydeco Breakfast every Saturday morning and a spectacular Sunday brunch served all day. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

I am not a glutton—I am an explorer of food.

—Erma Bombeck

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RV Lifestyle Is Changing

Alan Jackson said it best in his country song “Remember When”.

Cleaning your RV will take some time. But taking care of your RV is an investment that can pay off if you choose to resell in the future. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Newmar Dutch Star Class A Diesel Pusher motorhome © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

He sings of a time when things were simple, sometimes hard, sometimes special, and how things change over time.

And this pretty much sums up recreational vehicles and the RV industry and lifestyle.
As interests and passions changed, the RV industry has kept pace. Since recreational vehicles arrived on the scene a century ago, each decade has brought innovations in construction, design, living space, comfort, and technology.

Remember back when there were only a few RV dealers or repair facilities and they were scattered. Remember when trailers had tip outs (not slide outs), when Coleman was a furnace and Mobile Temp a water heater, and the list goes on and on.

Remember when you had to use a match to light the furnace and hot water heater?

How RVs, the RV lifestyle, and the RV industry have changed!

The future is exciting, fun, and open-ended.

Although the stereotype of RVers may be retired seniors cruising around the U.S. and Canada completing their bucket list, the modern RVer is drastically different than in years past.

The baby boomers are tearing up the industry, demanding superior products and top quality RV parks with all the amenities.

Social media and easy access to the Internet has allowed RVers to share their experiences like never before.

Solar power enables RVer to camp wherever they want, for extended periods, without sacrificing anything.
Solar power enables RVer to camp wherever they want, for extended periods, without sacrificing anything.

RV park and campground directories include big rig friendly sites and show parks with instant online and Wi-Fi access. More and more RV parks are opening with clubhouses and other facilities suitable for hosting RV clubs and rallies.

RV enthusiasts are making the diesel motorhome market one of the hottest trends. Diesel chassis are being manufactured to meet the growing demand with rear engines, mid engines, independent front air bag suspension, and tag axles that accommodate the manufacturing of 43- to 45-foot diesel pushers.

While there continues to be a demand for large, luxury motorhomes, many new RVs are smaller and lighter, primarily to increase fuel efficiency but also to serve the growth of new RV markets. Recent interest from young families, 30-something singles, and single women of all ages has created a rapidly growing demand for smaller RVs. With the goal of creating a travel trailer that can be pulled by a family sedan or SUV, RV manufacturers are using light-weight composites to decrease tow weight and creative floor plans to minimize weight and size while maximizing living space and usability.

Keystone Cougar Introduces Fifth Wheel With Party Deck
Keystone Cougar Introduces Fifth Wheel With Party Deck

Innovations including slide-out rooms has advanced from one to four slides in motorized and up to five slide-outs in fifth wheel trailers. Toy haulers are available in both the towable and motorized lines.

Energy-efficient kitchen appliances have become the norm, and the industry is starting to roll out RVs with factory-installed solar panels and even wind turbines.

High-tech integration, Wi-Fi capability, BlueTooth enabled electronics, the inclusion of more full-size features, a party deck, and specialized storage space for sports gear are other new RV industry trends.

What an exciting time to be a consumer entering the RV marketplace!

You know the RV industry is having a major impact when you see auto manufacturers building vehicles that are towable four wheels down. Light duty trucks capable of pulling large fifth wheel and travel trailers filled with everything including the kitchen sink. Towing specialists are keeping pace with the industry by increasing the strength and towing capacity of its products.

Imagine dry camping and watching satellite TV in your rig, while using your laptop as you surf the Internet. Or something just as simple as sitting outside under your awning enjoying all that is great and beautiful around you.

The RV lifestyle is changing. It enables us to pack up and go where we want.

If your job allows telecommuting, you can earn money on the go. If you’re retired, what does it matter?

RVing is the freedom lifestyle that enables people of all ages, backgrounds, and skill sets to take to the open road and go on an adventure, for however long they like.

KiraVan: World's Most Elaborate All-Terrain RV (Credit: Bran Ferren)
KiraVan: World’s Most Elaborate All-Terrain RV (Credit: Bran Ferren)

Life is good and we all should enjoy it to the fullest.

The future is the brightest it has ever been for the RV enthusiast.

Happy and Save Travels.

Worth Pondering…

Remember when thirty seemed so old
Now lookn’ back it’s just a steppin’ stone
To where we are,
Where we’ve been
Said we’d do it all again
Remember when.

—Alan Jackson

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Good Sam Announces Top Waterfront RV Parks for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top Waterfront RV Parks for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top WaterfrontShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Waterfront Parks from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

These RV parks are located on or near the banks of some of North America’s most popular lakes, rivers and ocean shores.

For water loving RVers, these parks provide easy access to fabulous recreation. In many parks, the shore is just a few paces from guests’ front doors. Whether RVers seek to catch a wave or drift in a lazy current, these parks inspire travelers to pull off the open road and hit the shore.

Highlights of this list include:

  • Several parks on the list cater to RVers who love boating and waterskiing. Located on the Colorado River in Nevada, Willow Beach Marina and Campground, for example, rents boats and kayaks to visitors eager to explore the area’s sheer cliffs and sandy beaches.
  • A number of parks offer the ambience of a seaside community, such as Point Hudson Marina & RV Park, a short walking distance from historic Victorian Seaport with its quaint shops and restaurants.
  • Rustic lakesides are the norm for RV parks like Spring Creek Marine and RV Park in Texas, where guests can boat, water ski, or swim in a beautiful constant-level body of water.

Facts about Waterfront RV Traveling

Pristine stretches of marshland, punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, define the breathtaking landscape of the Georgia Golden Isles. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Pristine stretches of marshland, punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, define the breathtaking landscape of the Georgia Golden Isles. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

According to a study by PKF Consulting, 48 percent of RVers hit the water to go fishing, while 14 percent of RV travelers go canoeing and kayaking.

A report from the National Marine Manufacturers Association shows that boating has been taken up by 88 million Americans, many of whom tow their watercraft by RV.

After years of anemic sales, powerboats have bounced back, with a 10 percent increase in sales in 2012 and another 5 to 10 percent expected in 2013.

Top Waterfront RV Parks

Arizona
Willow Beach RV & Campground, Willow Beach

British Columbia
Burnaby Cariboo RV Park And Campground, Burnaby

California
Campland On The Bay, San Diego
Mad River Rapids RV Park , Arcata
Mission Bay RV Resort, San Diego
Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina Newport Beach
Palms River Resort, Needles
Pirate Cove Resort, Needles
Pismo Sands RV Park, Oceano
Riverwalk RV Park & Campground, Fortuna
The RV Park of Rolling Hills, Corning

Florida
Beverly Beach Camptown RV Resort, Flagler Beach
Camp Gulf , Destin
Carrabelle Beach RV Resort, Carrabelle Beach
Daytona Beach RV Resort, Port Orange
Destin West RV Resort, Fort Walton Beach
North Beach Camp Resort, St. Augustine
Red Coconut RV Resort, Fort Myers Beach
Signature Motorcoach Resort at Naples, Naples

Gulf State Park, Alabama © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Gulf State Park, Alabama © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Georgia
River’s End Campground & RV Park, Tybee Island

Maine
Wild Acres RV Resorts, Old Orchard Beach

Massachusetts
Cape Cod Campresort & Cabins, East Falmouth
Peters Pond RV Resort, Sandwich

Michigan
Harbortown RV Resort, Monroe

New Jersey
Lake Laurie RV Resort And Campground, Cape May

North Carolina
Frisco Woods Campground, Frisco

Oregon
Beach Resort at Turtle Rock, Gold Beach

South Carolina
Lakewood Camping Resort, Myrtle Beach

Texas
Island RV Resort, Port Aransas
Spring Creek Marina & RV Park, Inc, San Angelo

Cajun Palms RV Resort consist of over 300 Deluxe RV Spots,12 Chalets,and 25 Cabins. RV spots have full hookups, 30- and 50-amp, 70+ channels of digital cable, and on-site water and sewer. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Cajun Palms RV Resort consist of over 300 Deluxe RV Spots,12 Chalets,and 25 Cabins. RV spots have full hookups, 30- and 50-amp, 70+ channels of digital cable, and on-site water and sewer. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Washington
Columbia Riverfront RV Park, Woodland
Point Hudson Marina & RV Park, Port Townsend

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

For all at last return to the sea—to Oceanus, the ocean river, like the ever-flowing stream of time, the beginning and the end.

—Rachel Carson, The Sea Around Us

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Good Sam Announces Top Group Camping RV Parks for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top Group Camping RV Parks for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top-Group-ShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Group Camping Parks from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

These RV parks provide facilities and space for large groups of RVers who camp together and conduct meetings, social gatherings and events.

From manufacturers’ organizations to independent RVing clubs, RV groups share a passion for hitting the road and meeting up at the end of a long journey. It’s up to the RV parks on this list to ensure that these groups have all they need for a great stay.

The highlights of this list include:

  • A number of RV parks dedicate staff members to serve large groups. Blueberry Hill RV Resort in Bushnell, Florida, for example, avails groups to an on-site event concierge to help coordinate renting a clubhouse or pavilion and reserving space for as many as 20 RVs.
  • Facilities also are a key feature for group friendly parks, such as EZ Daze RV Park in Southaven, Mississippi, which offers a southern veranda for cookouts as well as a meeting room that’s adjacent to a fully equipped kitchen.
  • Food is a top-of-mind item for RVing groups. River Plantation RV Resort in Pigeon Forge, Tennesee, for example, provides catering for large RVing groups who travel with an appetite.

Facts About Group Camping RV Parks:

Arizona has long been known for citrus and cotton–but the fertile lands surrounding Yuma at the Colorado River’s delta are lush and green all winter, serving as the nation’s salad bowl. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Arizona has long been known for citrus and cotton–but the fertile lands surrounding Yuma at the Colorado River’s delta are lush and green all winter, serving as the nation’s salad bowl. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Thousands of RVing groups travel the road to share fun and adventure together. The Good Sam Club alone boasts almost 1,500 chapters across the United States and Canada.

Many RVing groups spend countless hours in charitable work, from cleaning up public highways and parks to raising funds for organizations like Dogs for the Deaf.

Connected by Facebook, Twitter and other social networks, RVing groups are as vibrant as ever.

Top Group Camping RV Parks

Arizona
Casa Grande RV Resort & Cottages, Casa Grande

Florida
Blueberry Hill RV Resort, Bushnell
Pecan Park RV Resort, Jacksonville
Red Oaks RV Resort, Bushnell

Georgia
Coastal Georgia RV Resort, Brunswick

Idaho
McCall RV Resort, McCall

Mississippi
EZ Daze RV Park, Southaven

North Carolina
Raleigh Oaks RV Resort & Cottages, Four Oaks

Oregon
Seven Feathers RV Resort, Canyonville

South Carolina
Barnyard RV Park, Lexington

Tennessee
River Plantation RV Park Inc, Pigeon Forge

Wisconsin
Sherwood Forest Camping & RV Park, Wisconsin Dells

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

Cajun Palms RV Resort consist of over 300 Deluxe RV Spots,12 Chalets,and 25 Cabins. RV spots have full hookups, 30- and 50-amp, 70+ channels of digital cable, and on-site water and sewer. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Cajun Palms RV Resort consist of over 300 Deluxe RV Spots,12 Chalets,and 25 Cabins. RV spots have full hookups, 30- and 50-amp, 70+ channels of digital cable, and on-site water and sewer. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

We are all travelers in the wilderness of this world, and the best we can find in our travels is an honest friend.

—Robert Louis Stevenson

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Good Sam Announces Top Fourth of July RV Parks for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top Fourth of July RV Parks for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top Fourth-of-July-ShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Fourth of July Parks from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

The RV parks on this list go out of their way to celebrate the nation’s birthday with fireworks, colorful parades or excursions to nearby celebrations.

Whether featuring patriotic musical performances or serving up barbecued hot dogs, the parks on this list help guests appreciate the the biggest day of the summer travel season in the United States.

Highlights of this list include:

  • Local Fourth of July parades are a big part of the guest experience at places like Tiger Run RV Resort in Breckenridge, Colorado, where guests can attend the city’s big patriotic celebration on Main Street less than a mile away.
  • At some parks, guests can partake in a whole slate of Fourth of July events. In Alabama, for example, Guests at Auburn RV Park at Leisure Time Campground can enjoy local events like the Opelika Freedom Celebration, Fourth of July Celebration, and Market at Ag Heritage Park.
  • Guests seeking more relaxing Fourth pursuits can stay at places like the Soaring Eagle Hideaway RV Park in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, where local fireworks can be viewed from the park.

Facts about July Fourth RV Travel

The best way to enjoy and experience Petrified Forest National Park is on foot. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
The best way to enjoy and experience Petrified Forest National Park is on foot. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

An estimated 93 million Americans are expected to travel 50 miles or more from home this fourth of July, an AAA study reported.

Campground visitation surges during the Fourth of July, with RV parks traditionally reporting full occupation during the holiday.

Fourth of July is the most popular holiday for barbecuing in the U.S., according to the Hearth Patio and Barbecue Association. Many campgrounds host Fourth barbecues for peckish RV travelers, while many Rvers opt to spark their own open-air cookouts.

Top Fourth of July RV Parks

Alabama
Auburn RV Park at Leisure Time Campground, Auburn

Arkansas
Catherine’s Landing at Hot Springs, Hot Springs

California
Los Angeles/Pomona Fairplex KOA, Pomona

Arches National Park is renown for an awe-inspiring combination of arches, cliffs, stone spires, and other dramatic rock formations. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Arches National Park is renown for an awe-inspiring combination of arches, cliffs, stone spires, and other dramatic rock formations. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Colorado
Tiger Run RV Resort, Breckenridge

Louisiana
Pine Crest RV Park of New Orleans, Slidell

Michigan
Soaring Eagle Hideaway RV Park, Mount Pleasant

Washington
Alderwood RV Resort, Spokane

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

You have to Love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.

—Erma Bombeck

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Good Sam Announces Top RV Parks for Fishing for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top RV Parks for Fishing for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top September-Fishing-ShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Parks for fishing from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

The RV parks featured below provide guests with great angling opportunities on rivers, lakes or off ocean coasts.

In compiling this list, the Good Sam RV Travel Guide’s consultants and editors included parks that offered a variety of RV fishing experiences, from boat fishing to casting a line from shore. Many parks offer tackle and bait services for anglers.

The highlights of this list include:

  • RV parks like Live Oak Landing in Florida partner with charter fishing services to help guests catch the big one. In Live Oak’s case, Wounded Warrior charters take guests out to the Choctawhatchee River and its tributaries.
  • Some RV parks offer fishing right on the property. Missouri’s Basswood Resort in Platte City, for one, has RV sites located just a few paces from stocked fishing lakes.
  • RV resorts that allow guests to hone the fine art of fly fishing include Walker River RV Resort in Nevada’s Smith Valley. Here, RVers can cast a line in the fish-rich stream that runs through the property.

Facts about RVing Anglers

Pristine stretches of marshland, punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, define the breathtaking landscape of the Georgia Golden Isles. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Pristine stretches of marshland, punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, define the breathtaking landscape of the Georgia Golden Isles. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Close to 50 percent of RVers go fishing when they go on their RV travels, according to a recent study by PKF Consulting.

Almost 48 million people participated in freshwater, saltwater and/or fly fishing in the U.S. in 2012, according to Statista.

RV retailers such as camping world stock fishing equipment for RVers who enjoy casting a line.

Top RV Parks for Fishing

Arizona
Palm Creek Golf & RV Resort, Casa Grande

Florida
Live Oak Landing, Freeport
North Lake Estates RV Resort, Moore Haven
Rainbow RV Resort, Frostproof
San Carlos RV Park And Islands, Fort Myers Beach
Upriver RV Resort, Fort Myers

Idaho
Redrock RV And Camping Park, Island Park

Missouri
Basswood Resort, Platte City

Nevada
Cottonwood Cove Resort, Searchlight
Walker River Resort RV Park Smith Valley

Oklahoma
Marval Resort, Gore

Ontario
Campark Resorts, Niagara Falls

Experience life in old Luling (Texas)  at Zedler Mill Park and Cotton Gin—a turn of the century Cotton Gin—on the banks of the beautiful San Marcos River. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Experience life in old Luling (Texas) at Zedler Mill Park and Cotton Gin—a turn of the century Cotton Gin—on the banks of the beautiful San Marcos River. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

South Dakota
Oasis Campground, Chamberlain

Utah
Willowwind RV Park, Hurricane

Virginia
Gwynn’s Island RV Resort And Campground, Gwynn
New Point RV Resort, New Point

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

Most of the world is covered by water. A fisherman’s job is simple: Pick out the best parts.

—Charles Waterman

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Tips for Organizing Your RV

Ah, the open road. The only thing separating you and your adventure is getting everything in your recreational vehicle organized.

Tips for Organizing Your RV (Credit: rv-roadtrips.com)
Tips for Organizing Your RV (Credit: rv-roadtrips.com)

When venturing onto the open road, every inch of space is vital. Careful planning and creative thought will help to make your RV a comfortable home on wheels.

RV organization tips can save you time on your next road trip. Whether you’re heading to a national park or a camping trip to the lake, by organizing your RV you can save yourself the headache of scrambling to pick up last minute items at the local Walmart.

Organizing your RV can be fun and frustrating at the same time. There never seems to be enough space and you will most-likely re-organize your cabinets and storage areas numerous times before you’re satisfied.

Every square inch of storage space counts when you’re organizing your RV. Be creative when you put systems in place to utilize all interior and exterior storage space.

Anything you put in the RV adds weight. When packing your RV stay within the manufacturer’s recommended weight ratings and balance the weight from side to side and front to back. This is important for driving stability and safety. Weight management is critical to your safety!

Following are a few easy tips for organizing your RV that will simplify your life on the road and help you spend less time looking for things and more enjoying the wonderful adventure.

Tips for Organizing Your RV (Credit: lakeshore-rv.com)
Tips for Organizing Your RV (Credit: lakeshore-rv.com)

Storage containers are your friends. Use them to store odd shaped and sized items in similar places. This can save space in storage areas, cupboards, under furniture and the bed, and in the bathroom.

Before storing anything in the storage compartment in the RV basement, place them in storage containers or stacking bins to protect against dust and dirt.

Stackable shelving units come in various sizes and styles. Perfect for the RV kitchen cabinets that are typically very deep. Before you go shopping, measure each cabinet. To get every inch of space, you will need both the depth and width size of each cabinet you want to organize.

Storage is everywhere. That means the inside of your oven and microwave (don’t forget to empty it out before using!

Line drawers and shelves with nonslip liners to prevent items from sliding while you’re on the road.

Pre-plan what you’re bringing on your next road trip and think ahead to start the organization process of how to store what you need with you. Start with checklists; they are an RV must!

Check lists will help you organize everything from your kitchen to your camping gear to your weekly meal plans and groceries.

Leave as many items as possible in your RV between road trips. If you need to remove items and use them in your home, make a list of what you take out of your RV—that way when you get ready to venture out next time, packing will be a piece of cake.

Keep an evolving list in your RV: things to pack for each trip, things you don’t use anymore, things you wish you had, etc. These are the type of things you’ll think of while you’re on road trips — just jot them down as they come to mind and you’ll have them for next time.

Fruits and veggies will last longer in your fridge if you rinse and store in an air-tight bag with a folded paper towel. The paper towel will limit rotting.

Store grains and pasta in airtight containers or zip-lock bags to keep out unwanted critters.

Items used frequently should be stored near the front for easy access.

Recycle old Rx containers (remove the label) to hold an emergency stash of quarters for laundry.

Tips for Organizing Your RV (Credit: gr8lakescamper.blogspot.com)
Tips for Organizing Your RV (Credit: gr8lakescamper.blogspot.com)

Organize travel guides, campground directories, itineraries, and reservations in an easy-to-access location.

Over time you will discover the best way to organize the things you use most so they’re always handy when you need them.

Clutter tends to beget clutter, so don’t let the first stray object get things started. Clutter detracts significantly from the pleasure and convenience of using your RV.

A PLACE FOR EVERYTHING, AND EVERYTHING IN ITS PLACE

Worth Pondering…
Have you put…

Step up

Antenna down

Wife in?

—sign at a Dickson, Tennessee campground

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