Upstate New York’s Most Beautiful Places

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When you’re driving through upstate New York this summer in your RV, be sure to check out these exceptional places.

McGregor Vineyard

A vineyard? In New York?! Well, it’s located in the Finger Lakes region, so it’s actually not that strange. While not as well known as Napa Valley, Finger Lakes produces some pretty good wine in an arguably prettier setting. A prime example of this is McGregor Vineyard, which sits prominently on a bluff overlooking Keuka Lake. It’s a great place to grab a bottle of wine from the vineyard, set out a spread for a picnic, and simply enjoy the view.

Watkins Glen

Only 1.2 square miles in size, the park is known for its centerpiece attraction, the Rainbow Gorge. The narrow gorge is 400 feet deep and is cut through by Glen Creek, which feeds the gorgeous Rainbow Falls. The gorge offers a wholly unique and beautiful site. A geological wonder, Rainbow Gorge is worth the drive alone.

This is not to minimize the rest of the park, however, as Watkins Glen State Park packs a lot into a small package. There are also three trails, which are open from mid-May to early November. There are also numerous camping sites that offer picnic tables, pavilions, playgrounds, dump stations, and showers. There’s also a gift shop located onsite. Fishing and hiking are popular activities at the park.

Letchworth State Park

Known as the “Grand Canyon of the East,” Letchworth State Park offers views of tree-clad canyons, three spectacular waterfalls, 66 miles of trails, and even hot air balloon rides to see it all. The rock walls of the gorge rise up to heights of 550 feet in some places as the Genesee River cuts through it.

Visit Jim’s RV Center

Stop by Jim’s RV Center in Nichols, New York, when you’re exploring upstate New York this summer in your RV. From RV service to parts and accessories, Jim’s RV Center can help make sure that your time in your RV is fun and enjoyable.

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How to Get the Best Internet While Traveling

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Staying connected while living the RV lifestyle may seem difficult at first. Campground WiFi is never as reliable as most travelers would like and emailing from coffee shops gets expensive quickly. However, many RV travelers have discovered how to stay connected with fast, wireless internet on the go. The following are a few tricks of the trade to help you get the best internet access while traveling.

Use a Hotspot

Using a wireless internet hotspot is the best way to stay connected anywhere that has cellular phone service. Hotspots can be created on most smartphones and tablets, then all you have to do is tether you computer to the hotspot. Verizon and AT&T both offer nationwide coverage that makes it easy to connect in some of the most remote places. Hotspots do chip away at your monthly data allotment, so it helps to speak with your provider about a data plan that will work for you.

Use a WiFi Booster

Many campgrounds across the country now offer free WiFi to campers. The only downfall is that the wireless internet access they provide is often weak and unreliable. A WiFi booster can improve the internet access at places with free WiFi, so you don’t have to use your phone’s data. The Wifi Ranger Elite Pack is an affordable option for boosting signals at places with unreliable internet.

Use the Wi-Fi Finder App

It seems like every place you visit offers free WiFi until you’re really in need. The Wi-Fi Finder app can help you locate places that offer free WiFi, so you don’t waste time or money at places that don’t offer internet access. If you’re not interested in using an app, a simple call to the campground, restaurant or other site you’ll be visiting can help you determine if it will be a place with reliable internet access.

Stop by Jim’s RV Center

Don’t forget to stop and see us at Jim’s RV Center for all of your RV travel needs this summer.

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Filling Snacks on the Go

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Living life on the road in your RV doesn’t mean you have to eat every meal at unhealthy fast food restaurants. In fact, it’s just as easy for you to pull over and whip up one of these quick snacks in your RV than to wait in the drive-through line at McDonalds.

Italian Sausage, Peppers and Onions

What You’ll Need (for 6 servings):

  • 6 sweet Italian sausage links
  • 1 large red bell pepper (sliced)
  • 1 green bell pepper (sliced)
  • 1 yellow onion (sliced)
  • 1/2 red onion (sliced)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 cup white wine

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Turn your RV stove on medium heat and brown the sausage in a large skillet, then slice the sausage and set it aside.
  2. Melt the butter in the same skillet and saute the red onion, yellow onion and garlic for two to three minutes.
  3. Stir in the green and red peppers, then season the entire combination with the dried basil and oregano.
  4. Pour in the white wine and continue to cook the entire mixture until the onions are translucent.
  5. Mix the sausage pieces back into the skillet and reduce the stove’s heat to low. Simmer the entire combination for 15 minutes, then serve.

Chicken BLT Wraps

What You’ll Need:

  • 4 flour tortillas
  • 8 leaves green leaf lettuce
  • 1 package thinly sliced chicken breast (9 ounces total)
  • 1/4 cup bacon bits
  • 2 medium tomatoes (chopped)
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Beat the mayonnaise, lemon juice and garlic together in a small bowl.
  2. Spread the mayonnaise mixture onto one side of each tortilla.
  3. Spread two lettuce leaves on each tortilla, then add even amounts of chicken and tomatoes on top.
  4. Sprinkle each wrap with bacon bits.
  5. Fold one edge of each tortilla up, then roll the sides tightly together.

Get Your New RV at Jim’s RV Center

Are you in need of a new RV for the upcoming summer RV season? Come browse our huge selection of new and used travel trailers, motorhomes, fifth wheels and pop-ups right here at your New York RV dealer — Jim’s RV Center.

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Celebrating Easter on the Road

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If you are traveling in an RV for the Easter weekend, you may think that it would be difficult to celebrate the holiday – but it doesn’t have to be so, even if you have kids. Even campsites without a lot of forest cover between sites offer opportunities to hide Easter eggs. Easter dinner is also an easy feat, even without an oven.

Hard boil eggs and color them the night before. When the kids are sleeping, hide them around your campsite. Sites with forest cover between them give you excellent hiding places. Just hide the eggs behind trees at the edge of the site. You can also hide eggs on top of the RV’s wheels, alongside the fire pit and near the water hookups. You can even hide them in or near accessories you purchased from Jim’s RV Center, such as an outdoor grill or tire covers.

Instead of hard-boiled eggs, you can use plastic eggs filled with candy if it’s not hot enough to melt the candy inside. Hang pastel-colored party lights from the awning.

Plan a ham dinner – even without an oven, you can make a delicious dinner right on the coals or a gas grill. If the gas grill has a temperature gauge, you can even use it as an oven. Just adjust the temperature to 325 degrees F using two of four burners or one of three burners. Prepare the ham as you normally would. Put it on the side of the grill with the unlit burners. Cook it as long as you would normally cook it in a regular oven.

Don’t forget the Easter baskets – you can hide them in the basement storage if it’s cool enough. If not, you can hide them in the master bedroom until it’s time to give them to the kids.

If it is your custom to attend church on Easter morning, check the area for a church of your denomination. You can still attend if that is your practice. Most areas have churches of all denominations. If church is too far to drive, you can always find one of the sermons on television.

Visit Jim’s RV Center

Before you head out on your Easter trip be sure to stop by Jim’s RV Center to have your RV checked over thoroughly.

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Gardening Tips for Your RV

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You don’t have to quit your favorite hobbies to live life on the road. In fact, gardening on the go is easier than many full-time or seasonal travelers assume. The following are a few ways that you can maintain your hobby of gardening while living in the compact space of an RV.

Get Into Container Gardens

A container garden is an effective way to enjoy a mess-free garden on the go. It also allows you to get a lot of growth out of a little space without having to worry about weeds or pests. Consider hanging a container garden of herbs over your sink to enjoy fresh picked herbs with all of your RV meals. Basil, oregano, mint and rosemary grow especially well in container gardens.

Purchase Window Boxes

If your RV stays put seasonally or year-round, purchasing RV window boxes will help you garden outdoors more conveniently and without having to do any damage to your campsite. A number of companies also manufacture window boxes for RV bumpers, so you can surround your RV with your favorite flowers, herbs or veggies.

Consider the Topsy-Turvy Planter

The Topys-Turvy Upside-Down Tomato Planter allows you to plant tomatoes practically anywhere by hanging the device from your RV awning, a tree or any type of stand. This unique device is ideal for RV travelers, because it eliminates the need to dig or use cages. Even better, you can enjoy the convenience and taste of fresh tomatoes from anywhere you travel. Simply bring the Topsy-Turvy inside when you hit the road and place it back outside at your next destination.

Upgrade Your RV at Jim’s RV Center

Enjoy more space for your favorite hobbies on the road by upgrading to a larger travel trailer, fifth wheel, or motorhome from Jim’s RV Center. Stop in and see us to shop our huge selection of RVs on sale for spring today.

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Visit Niagara Falls State Park

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If you’ve never visited Niagara Falls, one of the world’s most famous natural attractions, now is the time to go. Beat the busy summer crowds and experience the best waterfalls in the country during the more mellow spring months. Niagara’s show is best when the snow and ice begins to melt and temperatures are more pleasing for visitors. Don’t forget to allow yourself plenty of time to take advantage of the activities available at the waterfalls and in the surrounding town of Niagara Falls, N.Y.

Take a Ferry Out to the Falls

The oldest and most popular way to experience Niagara Falls is by taking the ferry ride up to the bottom of the falls. The Maid of the Mist tour has been a highlight of any trip to Niagara Falls for generations. For over 150 years, the park has offered a boat tour that embarks from the Observation Tower and proceeds past the American Falls to the basin of Horseshoe Falls.

Explore the Cave of the Winds

Take a guided tour down into the gorge for a breathtaking close-up view of the falls. You’ll be outfitted in a souvenir rain poncho and sandals to help keep you dry. You’ll follow wooden walkways to the viewing deck, which is just a few feet away from the waterfall itself. The proximity to the falls will allow you to experience tropical storm-like conditions.

Dine at the Top of the Falls Restaurant

The only restaurant in the park with a view overlooking the falls, the Top of the Falls Restaurant is the place to dine when you visit. Their menu offers modern American cuisine alongside classic dishes. While you dine, enjoy your one-of-a-kind view through floor to ceiling windows overlooking Terrapin Point.

Learn About Old Fort Niagara

Located about 20 minutes north of the park, tour the grounds of the original Fort Niagara, where American, British, French, and Native Americans lived and worked from the 18th to 20th centuries. The fort was a strategic point in many conflicts, especially the French & Indian War.

Visit Jim’s RV Center

Before you embark on your next RV journey, don’t forget to pay Jim’s RV Center a visit. The service department at Jim’s RV Center is standing by with certified technicians to ensure that your RV is in good shape for any trip you have planned. If it’s time to upgrade your RV, Jim’s RV Center has a large inventory that’s sure to include the perfect RV for you. Come tour some models today!

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Warm Southern Destinations

Blue sky with white sand and palm beach in Key West, USA

When winter seems like its never going to go away, your only choice is to go away from it. Fire up your RV and head to one of these southern winter escapes. The warm weather, endless sightseeing, and sandy beaches will help you forget about snow and ice in no time.

Key West, Florida

Most travelers think of high-rise resorts and expensive cocktails on the beach when they think of Key West, but this tropical paradise doesn’t have to eat up your savings. Stay at Leo’s Campground — the most affordable RV park in the Florida Keys — and you’ll enjoy that upscale resort feel for a reasonably monthly rate.

Wilmington, North Carolina

Located just a few hours north of Charleston, Wilmington, N.C., is the Holy City’s mellow cousin. Relax on the uncrowded beaches, explore a more mild downtown scene or just kick back at the campsite and enjoy the warm winter temperatures. The North Carolina coast offers breathtaking views and outdoor fun all year long.

New Orleans, Louisiana

Whether you’re in the mood to party, dance, sightsee, eat or shop, few cities are as vibrant as New Orleans. Stay right in the French Quarter at French Quarter RV Resort or relax on the waterfront away from the action at Pontchartrain Landing RV Park. And whatever you do, don’t miss Mardi Gras.

Visit Jim’s RV Center

Before you put on your flip flops and hit the road, stop by Jim’s RV Center, your New York RV dealer. Our RV service department is here to handle all of your RV lifestyle needs, like preparing your vehicle for the long haul down south.

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The Best Hiking Trails in NY

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If you are looking for something to do this winter, pack up your RV and head out to some of the best hiking trails in New York. Choose from single- and multi-day trails; and trails that range from easy to difficult. If you are new to hiking, be sure you have the appropriate footwear – preferably hiking boots if you decide to try your hand at the trails that are more challenging.

Giant Mountain and Rocky Peak Ridge

This difficult trail is only 11 miles but will take a full day. The trail is a shuttled-car loop hike takes you over two 4,000-foot peaks, over smaller peaks and features great views. You’ll also pass several ponds where you can filter water for drinking and take some great pictures. This trail is located in Saint Huberts, New York.

Mt. Marshall

This trail is located in Tahawus, New York and takes a full day. This 13-mile hike is a difficult hike that runs from Upper Works and crosses the southernmost peak of the MacIntyre Range. The trails to the summit are not maintained; and the clearest herdpath starts at Herbert Brook between the Flowed Lands and Lake Golden. The difficult climb is worth it as you’ll get some of the best views you can find in the state.

Mt. Colden

This 14-mile hike take a full day and is a difficult trail. This loop hike travels through Avalanche Pass and returns via Lake Arnold. The peak is 4,715 feet and gives you excellent views of the MacIntyre Range, Mt. Marcy and the Great Range. The trail down from the lake is steep to don’t forget your hiking sticks.

Big Slide and Yard

For a moderate trail, head over to Keene Valley for this 11-mile trek up Big Slide and Yard. The descent over the Brothers in the High Peaks of NY is an easy descent. The trail creates a loop from the Garden Parking Lot just outside of Keene Valley and returns to the same place. You’ll find tons of open views of the Great Range. Plus, you’ll get to see the historic Johns Brook Lodge.

Visit Jim’s RV Center

Before you head out on your hiking trips this winter or spring, be sure to stop by Jim’s RV Center to have your RV checked or serviced; or to pick up any accessories or parts you may need for this trip.

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Decadent Holiday Dessert Recipes

Christmas card composition. Preparing gingerbread cookies

Desserts are some of the best parts of chowing down during the holidays. And just because you’re enjoying the holidays on the road this year, doesn’t mean you have to miss out on your favorite holiday sweets. These dessert recipes are simple and easy to make right in the comfort of your RV.

Old-Fashioned Gingerbread

What you’ll need:

  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Cooking instructions:

  1. Preheat your RV oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease and flour a square baking pan (9 inches is preferred).
  3. Cream the sugar and butter together in a large bowl.
  4. Beat the egg into the creamed mixture, then stir in the molasses.
  5. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and ginger together.
  6. Blend the flour mixture into the creamed mixture, then stir in your hot water.
  7. Pour the entire mixture into the baking pan.
  8. Bake the gingerbread for one hour, then allow it to cool before serving.

Easy Holiday Cake Balls

What you’ll need:

  • 1 package chocolate cake mix (18.25 ounces)
  • 1 container chocolate frosting (16 ounces)
  • 1 bar chocolate-flavored confectioners coating (3 ounces)

Cooking instructions:

  1. Follow the directions on the box of the cake mix to prepare it properly.
  2. When the cake is finished baking, crumble the cake (while it is still warm) in a large bowl.
  3. Stir the frosting into the bowl of warm cake pieces, until they’re fully blended.
  4. Melt the chocolate coating in the microwave, stirring occasionally until it’s smooth.
  5. Use a small scoop to form the chocolate cake mixture into balls.
  6. Dip the balls into the melted chocolate coating using a toothpick.
  7. Let the chocolate-covered balls cool on wax paper until the coating has settled.

Visit Jim’s RV Center

Make this holiday season the best one yet by shopping for a new or used RV from Jim’s RV Center. And if you’re already in the RV of your dreams, don’t forget about us for all of your other RV needs, from parts and accessories to service and sales.

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Holiday Scents for Your RV

The senses are one of the best ways to set a mood, and that includes the “holiday spirit.” While the decorations in your RV stimulate the eyes and those holiday jingles playing on the radio stimulate the ears, your nose might be feeling left out.

This doesn’t have to be the case though. There are quick and easy DIY projects you can do in your RV to give your space that holiday smell.

Make Your Own Potpourri Mix

Experiment with your own blend of dried fruits, spices, and flowers. Try things such as cranberries, oranges, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and nutmeg.

This very blend is actually great if you use it to make a stovetop potpourri (while your RV is not in motion, of course).

Take half a cup of fresh cranberries, 1 sliced orange, 4 cinnamon sticks broken in half, 1 tablespoon of cloves, an eighth teaspoon of nutmeg, and 2 or 3 cups of water. Combine all ingredients in a pot and simmer on low heat to fill your space with this Christmas scent.

Buy Scented Candles

Head to any store that sells scented candles and pick out a few that are holiday inspired. This time of year, there ought to be plenty of options on the shelf that are holiday themed. Like the stovetop potpourri, make sure that your RV is not in motion and that the candles are monitored at all times.

Visit Jim’s RV Center

Stop in and see us at Jim’s RV Center this December to tour any RV on the lot. Start 2017 off right with a new motorhome or travel trailer from Jim’s RV Center.

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