Tag Archives: camping

Pick Six: Top national parks in California and surrounding states

Yosemite Falls thunders, with our '64 Scotty trailer in foreground.

Yosemite Falls thunders, with our ’64 Scotty trailer in foreground. Couple admires Grand Canyon from rim near Moran Point Our top six picks: The top national parks in California and surrounding states This week is National Parks Week, with admission to all national parks and monuments FREE through the 29th! Californians are blessed by close [...]

Posted in Central California, Northern California, Pacific Northwest USA (Oregon, Washington, Idaho), Sierra Nevada, Southern California, Southwest USA (Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas), Teardrop and tiny travel trailers | Also tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Exploring the East Bay; the ghosts of old coal miners haunt Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve north of Mt. Diablo

Rose Hill Cemetery, high in Contra Costa foothills, contains burial plots of over 230 miners and their family members.

Ghosts of old coal miners haunt the East Bay foothills! From the 1850s to early 1900s, the largest coal mining area in California was the Black Diamond Mines District just northeast of Mount Diablo. The almost 4 million tons of coal (“black diamonds”) were the product of over 900 miners, many of them immigrants from [...]

Posted in Central California, Northern California, San Francisco Bay Area | Also tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

American the Beautiful senior pass: the best deal in camping and touring in National Parks and other federal attractions

America the Beautiful senior pass, deal of a lifetime!

I just got lucky and scored a campsite for two nights at lovely Pinecrest Lake up Hwy. 108, 25 miles east of Sonora.  The on-line reservation asked for my federal senior pass number, which I typed in.  I had forgotten this was a Forest Service campground – and with the 50% discount, we scored two [...]

Posted in Central California, East Coast US, Midwest US, Mountain West (Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado), Northern California, Pacific Northwest USA (Oregon, Washington, Idaho), Southeast US, Southern California, Southwest USA (Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas), United States beyond! | Also tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Exploring the northern California, Oregon and Washington coasts in the late fall

Rugged Oregon coast, just off Hwy. 101, looking north in central Oregon.

  Exploring the northern California, Oregon and Washington coasts in the late fall can be quiet, scenic and intoxicating.  Gone are the maddening crowds of summer, and weather in November and early December can be sunny, with crisp, clear days. It can also be wet, as we discovered along the Olympic Peninsula in Washington. On [...]

Posted in Central California, Northern California, Pacific Northwest USA (Oregon, Washington, Idaho), Uncategorized | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Classic travel trailers – is refurbishing or rebuilding one right for you?

Our '64 Scotty Sportsman, shortly after purchase. Looks cute, eh?

For the past 11 years, my spouse and I, having aged gracefully out of the tent and car-camping expeditions of our youth and middle age, have traveled extensively in the US and Canada in two small teardrop camp trailers. We have had great fun in those tiny campers (both reproduction models of a late 1940′s [...]

Posted in Central California, East Coast US, Midwest US, Mountain West (Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado), Northern California, Pacific Northwest USA (Oregon, Washington, Idaho), Sacramento/Capitol region, San Francisco Bay Area, Sierra Nevada, Southern California, Southwest USA (Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas), Stockton/San Joaquin County, Teardrop and tiny travel trailers | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Murphys, Ironstone Vineyards and Columbia…footprints in history

Murphys Hotel, in operation since 1856, anchors historic Main Street in Murphys.

Our daytrip was to feature a tour of the historic town and famous wine-making region, in and around the town of Murphys, California. With leaves in the foothills starting to change to their autumn colors, the one hour drive provided marvelous scenery. One of our party suggested starting with a tour of Ironstone Vineyards. We [...]

Posted in Central California, Northern California, Sacramento/Capitol region, Sierra Nevada, Stockton/San Joaquin County | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Classic trailers are “the show” at Trailerfest at Tower Park Resort, CA!

German classic Eriba Puck offers standing room, front kitchen and queen bed in 800 compact pound trailer!

Recently, almost 250 classic trailers were on display for the fifth annual Trailerfest event, at Tower Park Marina just west of Lodi. We walked through several dozen, particularly admiring and walking through small trailers from the feet up to about 15 feet in length. The argument for small, classic trailers is large.  They are small [...]

Posted in Central California, Northern California, Sacramento/Capitol region, San Francisco Bay Area, Sierra Nevada, Stockton/San Joaquin County, Teardrop and tiny travel trailers | Also tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Trailerfest and Rio Vista Bass Derby/Festival…head for Delta this weekend!

See vintage trailers like this Airstream Caravelle and woody tow vehicle, and 200 more, at Trailefest!

Here are two reasons this weekend to head for our San Joaquin/Sacramento River Delta: the fifth annual Trailerfest, a “back to the 50s”-themed gathering of 250 classic travel trailers and campers at Tower Park Marina, just west of Lodi on Hwy. 12, and the 68th annual Rio Vista Bass Derby and Festival in Rio Vista. [...]

Posted in Central California, Northern California, Sacramento/Capitol region, San Francisco Bay Area, Stockton/San Joaquin County, Teardrop and tiny travel trailers | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Grand Canyon’s North Rim, ghosts of the past and Pipe Spring National Monument

View from the Walhalla Overlook, distant, center, shows the Unkar Creek Delta where Anasazi farmed squash, corn and beans about 1,000 years ago.

One hundred forty six years ago, explorer John Wesley Powell and his rag-tag boatmen churned into the Grand Canyon and gazed in awe at the canyon with walls a mile high. With our first trip to the Grand Canyon’s North Rim, it was hard not to feel the same amazement that Powell and his crew [...]

Posted in Sierra Nevada, Southwest USA (Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas) | Also tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Comfy, cozy and efficient travel trailers; you asked for more!

A Hunter Compact II classic with pop-up roof makes for easy, aero-towing; made in CA during the 1970s.

We recently returned from a 23 day tour of eight national Parks – Great Basin in Nevada, the five stunning ones in Utah, the Grand Canyon North rim and a return through Yosemite. A week ago, I profiled some of the small, efficient camp trailers and camping set-ups that are becoming increasingly popular; several of you asked for [...]

Posted in Central California, East Coast US, Midwest US, Mountain West (Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado), Northern California, Pacific Northwest USA (Oregon, Washington, Idaho), Sacramento/Capitol region, San Francisco Bay Area, Sierra Nevada, Southeast US, Southern California, Southwest USA (Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas), Stockton/San Joaquin County, Teardrop and tiny travel trailers, United States beyond! | Also tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment
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    Tim Viall

    Viall is a local travel writer who retired in late 2012 after 10 years as executive director of Stockton, CA's, Emergency Food Bank and six years with the Downtown Stockton Alliance. Previously, a 21-year career in daily newspapers helped shape his ... Read Full
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