East Coast Travel: Top RV Destinations for Fall — Part 2

Here is the second part to the great travel destinations on the east coast from the Better RVing site. If you missed the first post, click here to take a look at it.

Harrisville/Cairo, WV

Nestled in the Appalachian Mountains in northern West Virginia, these towns offer spectacular views of the fall foliage. .While many choose Weirton or Ogelbay for their leaf peeping, these two off-the-beaten-path towns offer tranquility and a taste of West Virginia charm. With plenty of hiking and biking trails, quaint shops and home-style restaurants, this is a spot for those who prefer to keep things simple.

Best Dates: Expect a full range of color from mid to late October.

State Parks/RV Parks: North Bend State Park is in close proximity to Harrisville and accommodates RVs in both its River Run and Cokely campsites. Nature programs and boat rentals end in September, but there is still hiking, biking and horseback riding on the 72-mile rail trail that runs throughout the park, Part of the 5,500 Discovery America trail it follows unused railway tracks from a CSX corridor. Enjoy the park’s Quilter’s Getaway from October 28-31 with classes from master quilters.

Things to Do: The annual Pioneer Days in Cairo takes place October 16-17 in the Cairo town square. Filled with fun activities including a staged bank robbery, blacksmith demonstrations and apple cider pressing, delicious food and plenty of bluegrass, this events draws tourists and residents from all over the state.

Finger Lakes, NY

Spread across northwestern New York state, this area contains seven lakes and provides amazing locations to view the autumn leaves. Rochester, Ithaca and Syracuse form the triangle in which the lakes sit, but there are plenty of small towns that offer activities from hot air ballooning to apple picking. Wine aficionados may already know that this area is New York’s largest wine producing region and the fall is a perfect time to tour the vineyards and sample the wares. There also are plenty of museums and interesting historical sites, including Seneca Falls, the birthplace of the women’s suffrage movement.

State Parks/RV Parks: There are eleven state parks that front lakes and six more that feature gorges. Visitors can see waterfalls, spectacular foliage and stunning rock formations while hiking, biking and boating. There are nearly 70 camp sites within the state park system in the Fingerlakes region, many of which accommodate RVs. Find a campground near your route.

Things to Do: The Naples Grape Festival celebrates all things grape, including a grape pie eating contest and a grape stomping, and also has arts and crafts and plenty of food October 25-26.

White Mountains, NH

Famous for its spectacular fall colors, this mountain region in northern New Hampshire is filled with sugar maples that provide brilliant hues of red and orange. The area is home to a number of small towns known for their hospitality, including Franconia, North Conway, and Woodstock. Here you can take the Cannon Aerial Tramway across the valley to the top of a 4,200-foot summit or ride the Mountain Coaster at Attitash, an open flume-like ride that plummets down a 2,600-foot mountain slope. Calmer activities include a scenic walk along the famous Flume Gorge or hopping aboard an antique train.

State Parks/RV Parks: There are three state parks that can accommodate RVs in the area: Crawford Notch, Franconia Notch, and Moose Brook. All offer scenic vistas and an array of outdoor activities. Because of the high elevation, winter comes early here, so it’s best to visit as early as possible.

Things to Do: The Leaf Peepers craft show takes place October 16 and features handcrafted jewelry, wearable art, paintings, scroll saw creations, tapestry bags, gourmet food items and more. The event takes place regardless of weather at the North Conway Community Center. For more information, click here.

Chattahoochee/Oconee State Parks – GA

Numerous tiny towns surround and are embedded in the Chattahoochee and Oconee National Forests, which rest at the northern Georgia border. Dahlonega is the heart of wine country with a half dozen wineries and Suches is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts offering exhilarating views while hiking, biking and boating. Towns are located in close proximity to each other so you can shop, hike and enjoy a great meal without having to travel far. If you’re a Cabbage Patch doll fan, be sure to stop in Cleveland, the home of Babyland Hospital where you can actually see a Cabbage Patch doll being “born.”

Best Dates: Best viewing dates will depend on your elevation here and span from mid to late October into the beginning of November.

State Parks/RV Parks: The campgrounds at Desoto Falls in the Chattahoochee Forest provide a great base camp from which to enjoy the scenery of the falls, as well as the nearby Appalachian Trail and Raven Cliffs Wilderness. The campground can accommodate RVs. Surrounded by dense forest, camping here is almost like being on your own private island. For information call 770 297-3000.

Things to Do: Here is a complete list of activities in the northern mountains of Georgia.

Catskills, NY

Sometimes referred to as the “other” mountains, this area may not be as famous as its sister Adirondacks, but it has just as much to offer those who love scenic views and outdoor activities. Comprised of four counties in the southwestern pocket of New York state, the area is home to Woodstock and Belleayer Mountain, as well as numerous small towns. The region is known for its artisans and antiques, along with fine restaurants serving everything from avant garde fare to traditional homestyle cooking. Visit for a detailed list of the great towns that make up the Catksills.

Best Dates: See the best color here are around the third week of October.

State Parks/RV Parks: There are many local campgrounds that are RV friendly.

Things to Do: For a complete list of Catskills events for the fall season, click here.

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Interesting RVs: Have You Seen the Transforming Truck Camper?

I just came across this video of a handmade truck-based camper with a transforming upper deck. Words just don’t do it justice, so be sure you watch this video to see it for yourself:

What could be cooler than designing and building your own customized motor home from scratch? How about this: add not only every standard camper car amenity but also include a hydraulic lift system to give yourself a second-story Japanese-style zen loft space complete with rice paper windows and tatami mats.

Since completely their project, they have taken their creation on the road and traveled through much of Japan, stopping in camping sites and parking spots wherever they found them along the way. Suddenly, due to the transforming element of the design, normal highway height restrictions are no longer obstacles.

Inside, everything on the first floor of this custom mobile house has a thrown-together look – a kitchen, living area and utilities built for saving space and increasing functionality. On the second floor, however, it is a different story – function gives way to feng shui and spatial relationships, simple decorative touches, warm materials and soft lighting take over.

Best of all, it is clear that the creators of this crazy modern moving house have taken the time to enjoy the fruits of their labors, tripping around the country but also pausing to gather, communicate and celebrate along the way. — Dornob.com

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Read This Before Filling Up Your RV with Gas!

I just came across this story on the RVT.com site and I wanted to be sure that I shared it with you before you filled up your RV again. If you have any questions, just let me know!

By spring, filling up your RV with gas could be a little more complicated. The EPA just approved the use of 15% ethanol in gasoline, a 50% increase from the previously approved 10%. While gas stations will not be required to carry the new ethanol blend and, if they do, will have to clearly label pumps, RV owners should start checking pumps carefully before they fill up.

The new E15 gasoline blend is only recommended for RVs manufactured after 2007. If your recreational vehicle was made before 2001, the motor is not configured to handle E15 gas. The EPA is still testing vehicles manufactured between 2001 and 2006. Use of E15 is not recommended in those vehicles until testing is complete. RV owners should check with manufacturers before using E15 gas in their RV to make sure the ethanol blend will not damage the motor or invalidate warranties.

The ethanol increase is part of the government’s drive to increase alternative fuel use by 2022, by which time federal law mandates that the country double its use of alternative fuels. A byproduct of corn, its ready availability has made ethanol a popular choice for alternative fuel makers, despite the complications of producing blended gasoline.

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East Coast Travel: Top RV Destinations for Fall

The Better RVing site just posted some great travel destinations on the east coast and I wanted to share them with you!

Charlottesville, VA

Off the beaten path, Charlottesville has myriad oaks that turn brilliant shades of red when the summer is over. Located in west central Virginia, this rural hideaway in the Blue Ridge Mountains is the home of Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello estate and offers great antique hunting and shopping. Honored by outlets like A&E, Money magazine and others as one of America’s best places to live, it’s also where you’ll find the University of Virginia.

Best Dates: Leaves are already turning and are expected to peak between October 15 and 25th.

State Parks/RV Parks: George Washington National Forest is comprised of nearly a million acres and offers RVers both boondocking and full-amenity camping. For more information, click here.

Peters Valley – Delaware Water Gap NJ

Widely known as an artisan colony, this northwestern New Jersey town hosts woodworkers, sculptors, weavers, metal workers and more. It’s also one of the best places in New Jersey to witness the glory of autumn leaves. Part of the Skylands area, Peters Valley is nestled in the Walpack Valley, where the Delaware River splits Sussex County, NJ and Pike County, PA. Rent a canoe at Dingman’s Ferry and experience the colorful foliage from the ground up. Plan to spend at least at day to experience what Peters Valley has to offer.

Best Dates: Peak season comes earlier here than in New England because of the abundance of shallow rooted trees like swamp maple and ash.

State Parks/RV Parks: Worthington State Forest is comprised of 6,000 acres that extend nearly seven miles along the of the Kittatiny Mountain ridge. There are 69 tent and trailer sites in the park and hunting, fishing and boating are permitted.

For more information, click here.

Wellsboro, PA

Located adjacent to Pine Creek Gorge, also knows as the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon, Wellsboro has classic small town charm and is nestled in the wilderness of northern Pennsylvania. Antiques and restaurants satisfy those who want to explore town while the 47-foot gorge carved during the ice age is the focal point of outdoor life, which includes hiking, biking, bird watching, horseback riding and fishing. Stick around for a couple of days and get a taste of both.

State Parks/RV Parks: Leonard Harrison State Park has 585 acres with hiking, hunting, and campsites to accommodate RVs. For more information, click here.

Asheville, NC and The Blue Ridge Parkway

The elevation changes 5,000 feet between Asheville and the highest point in the Smoky Mountains, creating a glorious brush of color change that lasts almost two months. Asheville, located in northwestern North Carolina, is a medium sized city with plentiful art, theater, music and restaurants while the surrounding small towns along the parkway offer charm, peace and quiet. This is an area you could spend weeks exploring and still not experience all it has to offer, but any amount of time you stay will provide years of scenic memories.

Best Dates: Asheville explodes with color around the first week of November.

State Parks/RV Parks: The Great Smoky Mountains National Park accommodates RVs in its frontcamping areas. Along with hiking, biking, horseback riding and fishing, you can tour early settler structures like houses, churches and farms. For more information, click here.

Things to Do: Each weekend in October and early November is packed with festivals and events. Art in the Park, Oktoberfest and The Craft Fair of Southern Highlands are just a few. For a complete list, click here.

Bowling Green, KY

Located in southern Kentucky, the focal point of this town is the maze of caves that comprise Mammoth Cave National Park and outdoor enthusiasts can canoe on 31 miles of river or go spelunking. But this scenic area has much more, including tours of local farms and distilleries, along with an aviation museum and a downtown area offering historical tours, unique restaurants and shops. Arts enthusiasts will find plenty to satisfy them with theaters and museums, and of course, a bounty of bluegrass and blues music.

Best Dates: The best color in this area is mid to late October.

State Parks/RV Parks: Mammoth Cave National Park is known for its caves, all 367 miles of them. The Green and Nolin rivers offer canoeing, kayaking, and fishing that afford views of the surrounding foliage from ground level. Horseback riding, hiking, and bike trails offer plenty of opportunities to learn more about this unique area. RVs are welcome at the Maple Springs campground.

Things to Do: Visit Jackson’s Orchard for their weekly Pumpkin Festivals, running every weekend in October. The Festival features hayrides, a pumpkin patch to pick your own, a straw castle, face painting, a petting farm and much more. Sample caramel apples, apple cider slushes, fried pies and many other fall favorites.

Have you ever been to any of these places? Come on over and let me know about your RV adventures!

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Spruce Up Your RV with a New China Toilet!

If you’re handy around the house, then removing your RV’s plastic toilet and installing a brand new china one should be a piece of cake! Not only will it look nicer, but a china toilet is a lot sturdier, too.

The video I found below should get you on the right track, and it’s only about three minutes long, so you should be ready to install in no time!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wBFey7vbZiM

If you’ve done a similar project and have any additional tips, please leave them below or swing on by.

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Some Great Safety Tips for Your RV Travels!

RV safety is something that needs to be considered whether you’re a new or seasoned RVer, and I have some quick tips here that I think you’ll appreciate. Read through these and let me know if you think anything is missing from the list because RV safety is always changing and great tips pop up all the time!

RV travelers should make a habit of checking safety equipment twice a year and replenish first aid and other safety supplies before any big trip. Make an on-going safety shopping list by keeping a magnetized notepad and pen on the fridge. Add items to the list when you start to run low and you won’t forget to pick up a critical item when you stop at the store. (It’s also a handy way to keep track of staples and supplies that you like to keep on hand when you take your RV on the road.

To stay safe while you’re enjoying your RV, follow these safety tips:

Be prepared. Always carry the following basic safety equipment: well-stocked first aid kit, fully-charged fire extinguisher, battery-operated flashlights and lantern with extra batteries, roadway triangles or cones, and a battery-operated weather radio.

Tune in. Keep track of possible weather emergencies including flash floods, tornadoes and forest fires.

Emergency info. For each member of your RV travel party, prepare an emergency medical sheet listing any medical conditions, blood type, medications, allergies, primary physician, insurance plan and policy number, and emergency contact. Keep this information together and quickly accessible.

Emergency plan. When you arrive at an RV park, ask about fire and natural disaster evacuation routines. Locate exit points and plan your evacuation route should an emergency arise. Arrange a meeting point should disaster strike. — RVT.com

Remember that you can come see me any time!

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Love Cooking in Your RV? Try This Chicken Marsala!

With about a pound of chicken breasts, some extra virgin olive oil, and a few more ingredients, you can make this delicious Chicken Marsala on your next RV trip! This recipe is straight from Pennsylvania, and just like everything else featured on the RV Cooking Show, it looks amazing:

In a large saucepan on medium heat get butter and oil hot and bubbly. Dredge the chicken breast in flour and place in hot pan.

Cook until brown on one side and turn. Add mushrooms, lemon juice and marsala cooking wine. Allow to simmer 5-10 minutes until the mushrooms are soft but still chunky. Salt and pepper to taste.

While the chicken is cooking boil water and cook pasta.

Serve the chicken marsala over cooked pasta in a bowl with fresh, crusty bread and a green salad.

If you try that recipe out, make sure you come on over and let me know what you think!

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Why RVing is Better than Flying

I was perusing the Motorhome Magazine forum recently when I came across the topic, “Why RVing is Better than Flying”. The very first post in that forum got me thinking. Is RVing really better than flying?

Here is an excerpt:

Airlines don’t want you on their planes.

They started by feeding you really bad food. When that didn’t work, they stopped feeding you, but gave you drinks. When that didn’t work, they charged for all beverages.

Since they couldn’t use you stomach to keep you off their planes, most decided to charge you high fees if you wanted to actually bring luggage with you.

If that doesn’t keep you off their planes, they make you wait in a long line to check in your expensive bags. Then wait in another long line to be strip searched.

Only going to spend 1 night and think you can take everything in a carry on? Well, you better not need any fluids over 3 oz. Well, unless it’s contact lens solution, which they allowed me to take a 16oz container as long as I kept it separate for the unskilled screener to examine. There’s safety!

If you still insist on getting on their planes, they will make sure people like me (6’3″) are unable to walk after the flight due to no leg room.

I think Brian Regan’s perception of “Flying” is pretty accurate:

Ok, you might be saying “I get it, so flying is uncomfortable.” Well it’s also more economical as is evidenced by an RVIA study:

“Regardless of gas prices, RV owners still get a bigger bang for their buck when compared to other types of vacations,” says Richard Coon, president, Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA). “Affordability is a key reason why RV travel appeals so much to families.”

PKF analyzed major costs that would be incurred by families taking nine different types of vacations to such popular travel destinations as the Grand Canyon; Orlando, Fla.; Cape Cod; Napa, Calif.; and Alaska. PKF selected three types of RVs typically used by families for vacation purposes–a folding camping trailer, conventional travel trailer and Type C motorhome.

“In all cases, RV trips were more economical than other vacations analyzed, regardless of trip duration, distance or region of the country,” says Kannan Sankaran, PKF’s lead researcher for the study.

“Even when fuel prices rise, our data show that each RV vacation would still be significantly less expensive,” Sankaran explained. “While fuel costs are a component of the overall vacation cost, fluctuations in fuel prices aren’t significant enough to affect a family’s decision of whether or not to take RV trips over other types of vacations.” According to the study, fuel prices would need to triple to make RVing more expensive for a family of four than other forms of travel.

Vacations using a personal car, staying in hotels and eating in restaurants–the least expensive of the non-RV travel options–were found to be 36 percent more costly on average than going by RV.

So not only is RVing more economical that Flying…it’s also cheaper than a traditional family road trip! Food for thought. If you are interested in experiencing the joys of RVing first hand and at the same time do more and save more, then you need to get an RV…I know just the place to go too!


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Proper Black Water Disposal from your New RV

I’d like to think that this isn’t really an issue with 99% of my fellow RVers, but apparently there are a few folks out there who are not only extremely irresponsible but flat-out disgusting individuals with no respect for the people who reside in the area. After you watch the video you’ll understand.

Now, apparently Venice Beach has had a long, and at times tense history with RVers, so that might explain the disdain heard in the video. She has every right to expose this issue.

As I watched the video, I kept thinking, “There’s no way they were true RVers. I can’t imagine anyone doing that.” That is until I remembered that back in 2004 a similar incident happened with much more disturbing results….the Dave Matthews band Incident. Some of you may remember this. Some of you may not.

AUGUST 25–Claiming that a Dave Matthews tour bus driving on a Chicago bridge dumped “80 to 100 gallons of liquid human waste” on dozens of people taking a river boat tour, the Illinois attorney general yesterday sued the band and one of its drivers for $70,000. According to the Cook County Circuit Court complaint, a copy of which you’ll find below, as the Matthews coach drove on the Kinzie Street bridge, the “contents of the bus’ waste tank were released through the drain at the bottom of the bus and were discharged down through the open grating onto the bridge deck, into the river and onto the sightseeing tour boat.” The band and driver Stefan Wohl have denied they were responsible for the fetid August 8 cascade, which landed, the AG reported, on “persons with disabilities, senior citizens, a pregnant woman, a small child and an infant.” But Chicago cops reportedly have surveillance tapes showing the bus on the bridge at the time of the incident.

What were they thinking? As an RVer you are also a steward of our highway, road and street systems. It is your responsibility to behave in ways fitting of our lifestyle. Not to mention that you have a greater responsibility to the environment because you haul waste by-product, flammables and non-biodegradibles.

If you see anything like this happening ANYWHERE, call the local authorities because one bad apple can ruin the bunch.

If you think you have a problem or a leak in your septic system please don’t hesitate to contact us so we can fix your issues and keep RVing squeaky clean…pun intended.

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