Posts tagged with "camping"

Kayaking illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

What’s Trending in Tennessee

What’s New, Trending and Blooming this Spring in Tennessee

  • Memphis – Memphis Zoo’s all-new Kangazoo Experience lets you get face-to-face with kangaroos roaming free in the walk-through exhibit. Visitor favorites also include giraffe-feeding, the panda exhibit and Sting Ray Cove.
  • Jackson – Discover what makes Jackson a unique place for music lovers of all backgrounds whether you’re looking for new eclectic sounds, blues and gospel, country music or more with live performances of Jackson’s Hidden Tracks.
  • Nashville – Enjoy premiere shopping, world-class dining, live music and views of downtown at Fifth + Broadway. This 300,000 square foot multi-level mecca is a must-see and home to the National Museum of African American Musicand Assembly Food Hall featuring two dozen restaurants on multiple levels.
  • Columbia – The Mulehouse is a 55,000 square feet new music and event venue located a few blocks from the downtown square, established by country radio personality and broadcaster, Blair Garner.
  • Manchester – A brand new concert series features live, in-person performances in a socially-distanced setting at the Bonnaroo Farm. Concerts on the Farm includes performances by Billy Strings, Jon Pardy, Jameson Rodgers, The Avett Brothers and more.
  • Chattanooga – Grab your thinking caps, maps and don’t forget your mask. Take adventure to the next level. Learn more about Chattanooga’s top attractions and neighborhoods during the Spring Break Safari Scavenger Hunt.
  • Knoxville – Three levels of magical crystal barrooms wait to be discovered in downtown Knoxville. Bernadette’sbarrooms include the Knox County Quartz House, the Amethyst Lounge, and a stunning rooftop of Crystal Gardens.
  • Gatlinburg – Anakeesta will be in full bloom with the launch of Blooms and Tunes featuring colorful nature-themed art installations, live music and a new spring-themed menu at four restaurants in the park.
  • Townsend – The Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Festival Noon-10 p.m. May 22 includes live music, vendors, food trucks, bigfoot competitions, oral histories, 1-mile fun run and more at the Townsend Visitor’s Center.
  • Johnson City – Grab a scavenger hunt clue card online or from a downtown business to search for 15 bronze animal sculptures as part of Wildabout Walkabout Scavenger Hunt from the public library and King Commons Park to Main and Market Streets.

New Restaurants, Breweries and Distilleries

  • Memphis – Renowned chefs Andrew Ticer and Michael Hudman are at it again, this time with their Little Bettie pizza joint inside Wiseacre’s newly opened downtown taproom.
  • Clarksville – The Thirsty Goat is a newer gathering place outside of the city that features a beer garden, artisan coffee shop and oven-fired pizzas.
  • Murfreesboro – Biscuit-based meals made baked fresh daily are at the forefront of Maple Street Biscuit Co. Jams and jellies are also made in-store. Featured on Food Network, The Squawking Goat dish is an all-natural fried chicken breast, fried goat cheese medallion and house-made pepper jelly atop a flaky biscuit.
  • Columbia – Wolf and Scout Coffee Car is located in the Columbia Arts Building serving varieties of coffees and their signature drink, the Wolfhunter.
  • Carthage – Cajun wings, honey BBQ wings, onion rings, fries and delicious sides are on tap at Something 2 Wing About.
  • Farragut – 35 North, located in the heart of Farragut, features the area’s best food trucks, local brews, wine and spirits and features two patios, an outdoor fireplace and a place for gathering.
  • LaFollette – Twin Flame features amazing hot dogs, burgers, wings, catfish, specialty drinks and much more with carry-out and dining room seating available.
  • Wartburg – The MoCo Brewing Project is Morgan County’s latest brewery and coffee shop with signature beers named and influenced by local landmarks. The owners brew beer, coffee and offer flavored coffee and hot chocolate.
  • Sevierville – Tennessee Shine Co.uses family recipes and small-batch distilling, features a tasting bar and Moonshine Tour.
  • Johnson City – Watauga Brewing Company is a three story brewery, restaurant and rooftop bar. Restaurant On 2 combines upscale New American cuisine with Appalachian and southern roots. The chef uses local, seasonal foods in her menu. 

New Attractions and Exhibits

  • Memphis –Visitors can enjoy movie nights and world-renowned musicians in an all-new outdoor setting at The Grove at GPAC.
  • Memphis – Graceland celebrates the 50 anniversary King of Rock ‘n’ Roll meeting then President Richard Nixon with a special pop-up exhibit and artifacts with Dear Mr. President: Elvis and Mr. Nixon.
  • Nashville – Once Upon a Spring at Gaylord Opryland includes a live story time show, art activities, cookie decorating, scavenger hunt, boat rides and other fun programming.
  • Knoxville – Zoo Knoxville’s The ARC (Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Campus), open spring 2021, will showcase the zoo’s pioneering conservation work with these species and feature revolutionary STEM education resources.
  • Johnson City – Paradise Acresis a family farm park with an 18-hole mini-golf course, outdoor laser tag, barn-side drive-in theater and U-Pick produce.

New Hotels & Places to Stay

  • Memphis – Walk the line between southern hospitality, offbeat and elevated cuisine to get a genuine taste of Midtown’s unconventional personality, storied art district and Overton Square at The Memphian, set to open April 2021.
  • Memphis – Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis is within walking distance of the city’s famed entertainment district, nestled in a vibrant neighborhood known for lauded music venues, historic landmarks, southern comfort and Memphis-style barbecue.
  • Nashville – W Hotel Nashville is set to take the stage in the heart of the Gulch. Opening spring 2021 with 346 rooms, the new hotel will welcome visitors with curated local tunes, garden-to-glass cocktails and welcoming communal spaces.
  • Pigeon Forge – Pigeon Forge RV Resort along the Little Pigeon River includes 149 RV sites, camping, riverside fishing, illuminated river walk. On-property offerings include on-site concierge services, a pool, and hot tub, playground, picnic pavilion, a dog park, golf cart rentals, a retail store, conference room, gym, and laundry facilities.

New Stores

  • Columbia – Columbia features several new stores including Cope (in the Columbia Arts Building with a variety of trendy plants), family-owned jewelry store Tillis Jewelry on the downtown square and Southern Clutter Boutique with a variety of clothing, accessories, home goods and crafts.
  • Farragut – Euphoric Cheese features cut-to-order cheeses from all around the world, a wide variety of charcuterie items, specialty groceries and a selection of local brews. Items such as chocolate-covered figs, blue cheese stuffed olives, creamed honey and rosemary crackers will make your grazing board memorable.
  • Kingston – That Local Cheeseboard Co.features handcrafted charcuterie boards & boxes, grazing tables, customizable boxes, corporate catering, and gifts and items for special occasions.

Hot/Trending Places for Spring

  • Hornbeak – Vacation while you dine at Blue Bank Fishhouse & Grill at Blue Bank Resort with delicious weekend specials, local craft beer, live music, fire pits, butterfly garden & front row seating to a beautiful sunset on Reelfoot Lake.
  • Alamo – Drive through the 5.5 miles of safari roads in your own car, interact and feed animals at Tennessee Safari Park. After the journey, experience the walk-through zoo, enjoy refreshments at the concessions, the playground area, and the petting zoo.
  • Clarksville – Downtown at Sundown Concerts at Downtown Commons includes free live music the first and third Friday nights May through October. The large urban outdoor park allows space to socially distance with your chairs or blanket.
  • Linden – Experience serenity on the water. Commodore River Adventures offers an uncrowded, individual or small-group, artisan kayaking experience.
  • Nashville – Celebrate spring, warmer weather and longer days with more than 150,000 blooming bulbs and fun seasonal activities during Cheekwood in Bloom.
  • Nashville – Board the General Jackson Showboat, one of Gaylord Opryland’s most popular attractions, for cruises featuring first-class live entertainment, delicious meals and gorgeous views of Nashville.
  • LaFollette – Chapman Hill Winery is a quaint winery with an elegant tasting room nestled in the hills of East Tennessee on the edge of Norris Lake. Bring a lawn chair or blanket for the Vineyard Vibrations live music series.
  • Farragut – Enjoy a stroll through town, a heritage trail, cemetery and educational sites to learn history of the area, pioneer settlements and more through artifacts, photos and stories during the Farragut History Walk.
  • Harriman – Lakeshore Park offers recreation fun for the family and is home to the Gupton Wetlands area, where at least 114 species of birds can be found. Bring bikes, kayaks, fishing poles and enjoy scenery and trails.
  • Lancing – Lilly Hopyard Brewery is tucked away in the woods near the Obed Wild and Scenic River. Warm up around the campfire, watch the game, play corn hole, listen to live music and enjoy the Sauced Frog eatery.
  • Winchester – Stroll with family and friends during Food Truck Fridays at the downtown Farmers Market Pavilion on the Boulevard. Downtown merchants will stay open late on the first Friday of every month.
  • Johnson City – At the 40-acre Tannery Knobs Mountain Bike Park, riders can experience the thrill of off-road riding from the gnarly, rocky downhill of the Black Diamond to smooth dirt paths on the green trails.
  • Pigeon Forge – Explore larger-than-life plant sculptures adorned in half-a-million colorful flower blooms, dance under an Umbrella Sky and indulge in garden-fresh flavors from chefs during Dollywood’s Flower & Food Festival.

Spring Festivals & Events

  • Gatlinburg (March 18-20) – Explore the new Gatlinburg St. Patrick’s Day Celebration complete with traditional Irish music, food, fireworks, and more. The city will be decorated with Shamrock green and feature fireworks show at 10 p.m. Friday at the Space Needle.
  • Bell Buckle (March 20) – The historic town adapts Daffodil Days to include a tree seedling give away, spring bulbs vendors on the square, spring items in stores, and a book signing by beloved former Tennessee Poet Laureate Maggi Vaugn.
  • Chattanooga (March 20-21) – Come see the High Falls flow green during Shamrock City at Rock City featuring Irish food, specialty beer from Chattanooga Brewing Co., bagpipers, pop-up Irish dance performers, and virtual scavenger hunt.
  • Linden (March 26-27) – The Blooming Arts Festival mixes fine arts, local craftsmanship, performances and fantastic local eats. Masks and social distancing recommended. Sanitization stations will be up on Main Street.
  • Pigeon Forge (March 26-28) – Cowboy cooks circle the wagons for the one-of-a-kind outdoor Pigeon Forge Chuck Wagon Cookoff that features chuck wagons–the original food trucks. Attendees can sample the offerings at lunch.
  • Murfreesboro (March 29-April 2) – Looking for a fun and safe way to kick off spring? Stop by the Discovery Center for Mess Fest. Get creative and messy with free outdoor activities such as making oobleck, elephant toothpaste and more.
  • Spring Hill (April 2) – Grammy Award Winner Casting Crowns performs a socially distancing family-friendly drive-in concert 7 p.m. at RippavillaTickets benefit the Well Outreach Food Pantry.
  • Crossville (April 2-June 24) – Cumberland County Playhouse kicks off its 2021 spring season with productions like Clue on Stage, The Savannah Sipping Society, Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now and Duck Hunter Shoots Angel.
  • Savannah (April 3) – The 9th Annual Generals Breakfast kicks off at 9 a.m. at Cherry Mansion with an outdoor breakfast, storytelling program and a Q&A by the homeowners. Tickets are $15. Masks and social distancing are encouraged.
  • Murfreesboro (April 23) – Travis Tritt with special guest Frank Foster takes the stage at 7 p.m. at Hop Springs Beer Park. There’s live music every weekend at the family & dog-friendly park with food and a huge selection of craft beers on tap.
  • Harriman (May 1) – The May Day Craft and Antique Fair will have vendors that display handmade crafts, vintage items and antiques, food vendors, live entertainment and classic car show.
  • Granville (May 1) – The Cornbread & Moonshine Festival features whiskey tastings, cornbread tasting, food, music, and craftsmen. Admission is $5. The new Whiskey Decanter Museum also opens with over 3,000 whiskey decanters.
  • Cookeville (May 1) – Cookeville Storyfest 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. in the big tent in Dogwood Park includes headliners Andy Offutt Irwin and Minton Sparks, and an amateur storytelling competition.
  • Tellico Plains (May 1) – The Tellico Trout Festival 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. downtown gathers fishermen, river sports enthusiasts and families for fun, education, food, entertainment and outfitter services.
  • Gatlinburg (May 1-3) – Guests can begin a creative journey in crafts, woodworking, basket weaving, jewelry making and more during Hands on Gatlinburg in the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community. Register in advance before workshops sell out.
  • Pigeon Forge (May 5-8) – Textile art and techniques to stitch quilts are on display at Pigeon Forge’s A Mountain Quiltfest. Guests can register for instructional classes. The free quilt exhibit and vendor hall are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the LeConte Center.
  • Sweetwater (May 7-8) – Head to Historic Downtown Sweetwater for the Blooms, Bluegrass and BBQ Festival with live music, barbecue competition, vendors, picker’s corner, kids’ zone and fun activities.
  • Smithville (May 8) – Center Hill Lake Fest 4-10 p.m. at The Burlap Room Beer Garden and Dispensary features plenty of space to socially-distance while enjoying food from local food trucks, craft beer and local vendors. Please wear a mask in vendor and restroom lines. Tickets for the kid and pet-friendly event start at $20.
  • Rugby (May 8) – Raise a cup to Queen Victoria during the Queen’s Tea at Historic Rugby. The festive tea will include sandwiches, scones and dessert. Tickets are $22.
  • Wartburg (May 15) – The Tennessee Mountain Laurel Festival is filled with music, food, exhibits, creative arts, crafts, a car show and 24 designated scenic trails 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. around courthouse square.
  • Harriman (May 22-23, May 29-31) – Join a weekend of fun with costume contests, pirate Olympics, treasure hunts, get a picture with a mermaid or scallywag or shop the merchant village for unique treasures at the 5th Annual Tennessee Pirate Fest.
  • Bell Buckle (May 29) – Load up the car and go on an adventure in Historic Bell Buckle geocaching for prizes 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. during the Bell Buckle Car Cache and Pig Bash. Registration information can be found here.
  • Donelson (May-October) – Stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables, shop from local vendors, listen to live music and stroll through the historic grounds of Two Rivers Mansion Fridays 4-7 p.m. during the outdoor Hip Donelson Farmers Market.

For a complete list of what’s happening in Tennessee, visit the calendar on the website.  

AMERICAN-DREAM®-39RK illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

AMERICAN DREAM 39RK

AMERICAN COACH DEBUTS AMERICAN DREAM 39RK

FLOORPLAN INCLUDES EXCLUSIVE KITCHEN ISLAND LAYOUT

REV Recreation Group (RRG), a subsidiary of REV Group, Inc., introduces the all-new 2021 American Dream 39RK model with an innovative floorplan at the FMCA’s 102nd International Convention in Perry, GA (March 10-13, 2021). The 39RK is a Class A Diesel motor coach by the ultra-luxury American Coach brand.

At 40’ 2”, the American Dream 39RK layout provides easy livability and ultimate comfort. Signature elements include a stylish, industry-leading kitchen island, an Adap-table Dinette, a full master suite, and a split lavatory with an enclosed watering room. In the kitchen, the new 39RK floorplan features one of the first stationary islands in a Class A. The fixed island provides more countertop workspace and additional storage, accommodates an induction cooktop, and includes a wine chiller.

“Whenever you’re entertaining, guests naturally gravitate to the kitchen and congregate around the island,” says Doug Miller, Product Manager for REV Recreation Group. “The 39RK floorplan delivers that ‘at-home’ experience with the kitchen island and a number of other residential amenities.”

The island is made possible by an exclusive Adap-table Dinette that can serve as a convenient workstation or breakfast bar for two. By swinging the table out vertically, it easily hosts a dinner party for four. Additional high-end appointments in the kitchen include quartz countertops, two wireless charging stations, an optional Fisher Paykel dishwasher, and hand-made cabinetry with full-extension drawers. The bathroom suite features quartz countertops with a tile backsplash and a beautifully tiled shower with a glass enclosure, skylight, and teak bench. The master suite appointments include a king-sized articulating bed that’s flanked by quartz-topped nightstands, two wireless charging stations, a chest of deep drawers that can accommodate a full wardrobe of clothes, a stackable washer and dryer, and a 43” LED TV.

The American Dream 39RK is built on American Coach’s exclusive and robust Liberty Bridge chassis, boasts a Cummins L9 450 horsepower engine, and has a steerable tag axle for sharp turning and extra carrying capacity.

American Dream offers owners a plethora of choices to customize their motor coach – four exterior paint designs (Falling Ash, Nighthawk, South Beach, and Stone Washed), three stylish and refined décor packages (Club Navy, Luxe Truffle, and Rockport Greige), and four hardwood options that range from classic and rich to contemporary and bright (Cognac, Majestic Chestnut, Sandbar Grey, and Edgecomb).

Celebrating its 30th anniversary, American Coach is the most luxurious brand from RRG. The American Coach line includes three richly appointed models – American Dream, American Tradition, and American Eagle.

For more information on the new American Dream 39RK model, visit their website.

ADVENTURES IN MIYAGI PREFECTURE

Known as the “Land of Contrasts,” Japan’s Miyagi Prefecture is home to a variety of outdoor activities for travelers to enjoy. From cycling to surfing and even paragliding, Miyagi’s wide range of landscapes has no shortage of opportunities to try something new. Below are a few places travelers can dream of visiting when travel restrictions are lifted.

With a variety of biking trails to choose from, Miyagi is the perfect place to cycle through paths that stop by some of the prefecture’s most famous sights. For coastal views, Oshika Peninsula offers more than 40 miles of rolling hills and coastal panoramas, including a view of Kinkasan Island, a majestic island home to sacred deer that roam about the island freely. In the countryside, Marumori Loop is a popular cycling spot for locals. The low plains offer excellent views of the mountains, charming villages and rice fields. Experienced bikers can cycle through the mountainous wilderness of Mount Zao. These incredibly remote passes are grueling but are totally worth it for the beautiful scenery, secluded hot springs and countryside cafes.

Speaking of Mount Zao, the region is one of Miyagi’s best destinations for outdoor adventures. Skiers and snowboarders can opt to tackle the remote slopes on their own, but a guide is considered essential for anyone not trained in winter mountaineering and acquainted with the terrain of Mount Zao. Luckily, M’s Guide is a winter mountain guide service based at Sumikawa Snow Park and can tailor any outdoor excursion for guests.

For watersports, three-time paragliding national champion Takeshige Yamaya offers tandem paragliding experiences in Matsushima Bay, perfect for travelers to experience one of the Three Most Scenic Spots in Japan. Setravelndai and even Mount Zao can also be seen from the sky. In Sendai, Barefoot Surf offers a variety of SUP (stand-up paddle boarding) and surfing excursions for any skill level.

Travelers looking to spend the night outdoors can stay at the Fukiage Kogen Campground in Northern Miyagi. The grounds are surrounded by scenic views of mountains and quiet forests. The campground even has its own hot spring, walking trails, pub and plenty of cute goats. While travelers can bring their own equipment, guests can be supplied with all the gear they need with advanced reservations.

For more information on Miyagi, please visit http://www.visitmiyagi.com.

Rita Azar illustrates homeschooling article for 360 MAGAZINE

Homeschool Experts Recommend

Camping as a Virtual Learning Tool

With virtual schooling and family camping both skyrocketing as the result of COVID-19, Hip Homeschool Moms, a Parents magazine 2020 “Best Homeschooling Resource,” and Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park have teamed up to help struggling parents create fun, educational learning opportunities.

According to Jellystone Park, reservations are spiking as many schools open virtually and parents work from home, allowing families more flexibility to travel.

“Whether parents are using online curriculums provided by schools or are homeschooling, it’s important that they find ways to make learning fun,” said Trish Corlew, co-founder of the website HipHomeschoolMoms. “Most kids need to do more than sit in front of a screen to learn, which is why we are such big fans of camping. It provides so many great, hands-on educational opportunities.”

Hip Homeschool Moms has these tips for parents on how to include a late summer or fall camping trip in their virtual or homeschool plans:

  1. Look for family friendly campgrounds, such as Jellystone Park.They offer activities that entertain and educate kids, such as Bingo and arts and crafts, which supplement planned learning. They also provide socialization opportunities that are needed with classrooms closed and homeschool field trips and other activities on hold.
  2. Involve the kids in planning and managing the trip.Part of the learning experience is allowing kids to help with researching campgrounds, setting the budget for the trip and buying necessary supplies. And once you’re at the campground, let the kids help take care of the RV or cabin. They love responsibilities like these because it makes them feel grown up. These are life skills they will soon need.
  3. Check the campground’s Wi-Fi in advance.
    Call the campground to make sure it offers sufficient Internet access. If not, rent or buy a mobile hotspot to make sure you have enough bandwidth for online lessons, movie streaming and staying in touch with friends, family and work.
  4. Use online lessons and apps.Online lessons perfect for camping are widely available to help children study leaves, trees, rocks, flowers and wildlife. There also are apps designed for outdoor learning, as well as printable activities and games to take with you.
  5. Read and walk together.Camping provides the ideal environment to spend time as a family. Read aloud together, taking turns on different pages to help reluctant readers improve their skills. Or have the kids read independently and share what they learned. Scavenger hunts with printed or app-based guides encourage togetherness and learning.
  6. Visit local attractions.Many campgrounds are located near natural and historic sites. Consider stopping at some on the way to or from your campground. Museums and science centers can make for great day trips, especially on rainy days.
  7. Encourage your children to share what they learn.Kids love to tell stories, take pictures and produce videos. Have them record the weather, plants and animals they observe, and their activities. Journaling and scrapbooking also are great ways to get the most educational value from a trip and to preserve memories.

“Even before the pandemic, fall camping had become extremely popular with families, especially with most Jellystone Park locations offering special fall events, such as Halloween weekends,” said Trent Hershenson, Jellystone Park vice president of Marketing. He encourages parents to book trips now and to consider weekday visits, as weekends book up quickly. Weekday rates also may be lower.

For more advice on educational camping and links to free lessons and guides, visit here.

For tips on planning a family camping trip and to book a reservation at one of more than 75 Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts, visit here.

Links to video of kids learning while camping here and here.

Camel illustrated by Mina Tocalini for 360 MAGAZINE.

Desert Ranch Experience

Desert Ranch Experience by Camel Safari introduces three brand-new daytime and overnight “Glamping” packages for adults and families featuring accommodations in authentic Mongolian gers, catered food and beverage, exotic desert animal encounters, educational tours and more. Operating on 176 acres under wide-open desert skies 80 minutes north of Las Vegas, Desert Ranch Experience’s safari-inspired glamping destination provides a tranquil retreat surrounded by views of majestic desert cliffs and wildlife. Desert Ranch Experience Glamping packages are available beginning Aug. 1 and can accommodate groups of two to six.

Daytime and overnight packages at Desert Ranch Experience offer privacy for small family and friend groups and follow social distancing and health and safety protocols. Guests enjoy exclusive tours, dining accommodations and small group sizes. For more information on how Desert Ranch Experience is keeping employees and guests safe, click HERE.

Each Desert Ranch Experience package allows guests access to one of ten authentic Mongolian gers located at the ranch. These magnificent, brightly-colored portable shelters are comprised of lattice walls with flexible beams covered in fabric featuring detailed one-of-a-kind artwork handcrafted in Mongolia. Guests can relax and sleep on handmade beds with a sink located inside each ger. Originally created and well-suited for the traditional Mongolian nomadic lifestyle, gers are easy to assemble, disassemble and transport on Bactrian Camels. Shared bathrooms are also located within walking distance of the gers. For added comfort, each ger is climate-controlled.

Every visit to the ranch includes up-close animal encounters and educational tours with the variety of exotic animal species that call it home. The destination provides a habitat for more than 30 camels with activities including snuggling and brushing, as well as daily encounters with other exotic animals such as alpacas, a llama, armadillos, an African crested porcupine, two-toed sloth and more.

Guests will receive a private, catered lunch during the daytime package and overnight packages will receive lunch, dinner and late-night, fireside s’mores when available. All meals are made on-site in the property’s restaurant-grade kitchen or grilled al fresco.

Other activities available for guests at Desert Ranch Experience include rides in a vintage Army truck and Bactrian camel crafts. Bactrian camels have some of the finest fiber in the world, which is highly sought after to make clothing, ropes, rugs and jewelry. This seasonal activity allows guests to brush a camel and use its fiber to make a genuinely distinctive memento of their visit. This activity teaches guests how to collect, clean, card and create a keepsake out of this rare fiber. This activity is ideal for children, corporate events and bachelorette parties.

PACKAGES

Family Day Glamping Experience ($329 for up to four people; $85 for each additional adult or $35 for each additional child, up to four people):

 

  • Access to an authentic private, climate-controlled ger.
  • Desert animal encounter tour.
  • Photo opportunity.
  • Catered private lunch.
  •  Bactrian camel crafts.
  • An open-air ride in a vintage Army truck.
  • Free time in the ger or roam the property and view animals.
  • Available on Sundays, Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

 

Adult Day Glamp Experience ($189 for two people; $85 for each additional adult up to six people, available on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.):

  • Access to an authentic private, climate-controlled ger.
  • Camp orientation.
  • Desert animal encounter tour.
  • Photo opportunity.
  • Catered private lunch.
  • An open-air ride in a vintage Army truck.
  • Free time in the ger or roam the property and view animals.

Overnight Glamp Experience ($350 for two people; $85 for each additional adult and $35 for each additional child, up to four people):

  • Overnight accommodations in an authentic private, climate-controlled ger.
  • Mini-fridge stocked with waters and soft drinks.
  • Desert animal encounter tour.
  • Photo opportunity.
  • Bactrian camel crafts.
  • Catered private dinner.
  • Nocturnal animal tour.
  • Self-guided stargazing.
  • Fireside activities including s’mores.
  • Morning animal feeding.
  • Private breakfast.
  • An open-air vintage Army truck ride.
  • Available Thursday through Monday.
  • Guests are encouraged to bring sleeping bags and flashlights.

The ranch’s exclusive and unforgettable location also offers a picturesque desert landscape perfect for private events and full-ranch buyouts, including weddings, family reunions, corporate retreats, bachelor and bachelorette parties, birthday parties and more.  For more information, go to www.DesertRanchExperience.com/Rentals/.

Desert Ranch Experience by Camel Safari offers a distinctive outdoor destination for conservation-focused animal encounters, as well as daytime and overnight “glamping” experiences inside authentic Mongolian gers. Situated on 176 acres along the Virgin River 80 minutes north of Las Vegas, the ranch provides the perfect retreat for daytime excursions and overnight stays. Every Desert Ranch Experience includes up-close animal encounters with the destination’s 34 camels and other exotic animal species, including alpacas, llamas, armadillos, African crested porcupine, a two-toed sloth and more. The ranch’s exclusive and unforgettable location offers a picturesque desert landscape perfect for weddings, family reunions, corporate retreats, bachelor and bachelorette parties, birthday parties and more. Desert Ranch Experience maintains accreditation as a Disney-approved vendor and certification from the Zoological Association of America. The ranch also proudly earns a consistent 5 out of 5 rating on TripAdvisor. To learn more about things to do, glamping packages and private event information, call (800) 836-4036 or visit www.DesertRanchExperience.com.

Follow Desert Ranch Experience: Facebook | Instagram

Yellowstone Camping + Cycling Tour

Escape Adventures has announced a six-day camping and cycling trip in Grand Teton National Park & Yellowstone National Park. This tour is designed for travelers of all fitness levels and appropriate for families with older children. Guests will witness magnificent peaks, enormous canyons, glacial lakes, lots of wildlife, and American West icons like Old Faithful. Daily cycling routes range in length from 14 to 59 miles. E-bikes are available upon request. Tours are being offered June – September 2020 and start at $1,695 per person.

Highlights include:

  • Riding Geneva Pass, Salt Pass, and Teton Pass
  • Visiting Intermittent Spring, the largest rhythmic spring in the world
  • Cycling through Star Valley and Snake River Gorge
  • Spotting grizzly bear, bald eagles, elk, bighorn sheep, bison and more
  • Viewing Isa Lake at 8,262 ft.
  • Hiking from Artist Point down to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River
  • Riding from Teton Village to the quaint, Old West town of Wilson, WY

“Guests will cycle through a geothermal Disneyland, sweeping past a phantasmagoric succession of percolating mud pots, hot springs and belching fumaroles, including Morning Glory Pool, Biscuit Basin, and the Grand Prismatic Spring,” said Escape Adventures Director, Jared Fisher.

Specialized bicycles are provided and equipped with carbon fiber frames and disc brakes designed for a smooth, comfortable ride. For those who may need a little help up the hills, electric pedal assist bikes are available. All road bike trips include a Garmin GPS device to help navigate through each day safely and smoothly.

Escape Adventures utilizes high-quality camping gear, including a tent, sleeping pad, raised cot, sleeping bag, sleeping bag liner, full size pillow, and ground tarp. Trip Leaders will ensure equipment is set up properly each night. Most campgrounds feature indoor facilities and showers.

Expect three delicious meals a day consisting entirely of freshly prepared foods, including organic fruits and vegetables, as well as meats. Escape Adventures also offers energy snacks aboard its support vehicles and can accommodate vegans or vegetarians.

“There is nothing better than rolling into camp to fresh made chips and salsa, homemade guacamole, and Dutch oven enchiladas,” said Fisher, “Then making your way to a sweet and inviting campfire, sharing your favorite anecdote or image from the day’s activities while marshmallows roast.”

For more information visit here or contact Escape Adventures at 800-596-2953.

Door County, Wisconsin, Travel, Food, Geiger PR, Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE

Outdoor Adventures for Your Next Vacation

There’s nothing like quality vacation time to help you recharge and enjoy the important things in life. While it’s the perfect chance to disconnect and catch up on your rest, it’s also a great opportunity to add some adventure to your life. The truth is, most people long for exciting and meaningful experiences, but it can be difficult to find them in the day to day. If you’re preparing for an upcoming trip, take advantage of the journey and try something new and exhilarating. Whether it’s a family getaway or adults only, there are plenty of outdoor adventures you can choose from to broaden your horizons.

White Water Rafting

If you’re looking for an exciting activity that’s great for exploring nature while working as a team, white water rafting can be a great choice. It works well for groups of practically every size, whether you’re going alone or want to bring several friends or family members along for the ride. While most people assume you need to be a good swimmer to stay safe with this kind of activity, there are actually several levels of intensity to choose from. As long as you work with a company of highly trained professionals who provide quality safety gear, being a strong swimmer isn’t necessary to enjoy the adventure. However, many locations offer more relaxed options for those who are looking to float over gentler waters so they can take in the sights.

Ziplining

If you’re looking for an adrenaline rush with a bird’s eye view, Denver ziplining is a unique and exciting experience for adventure lovers. A series of cables are suspended, usually over scenic locations, from forests and rivers to mountains and cliffs. Participants travel along the cable through the air from one base to the next while experiencing the beauty of the outdoors from an entirely new perspective. Some locations even offer nighttime packages so you can explore under the stars. Most trips usually last between two and three hours and some courses are open to children as young as four or five. However, the age requirements and duration will vary based on location and company, so be sure to check ahead before you book a package.

Camping and Hiking

For a more accessible approach to trying something new, camping and hiking are great options for the entire family and virtually every age. To keep things exciting, find parks and campgrounds with unique options, like treehouse cabins, beach grounds or even dark-sky zones for the best view of the stars. While you can plan your own hiking trip, consider hiring a guide to take you off the beaten path for a one-of-a-kind experience. Whether you choose a location with historic significance or scenic waterfalls, a professional can help you get the best views while pointing out unique flora and fauna along the way. If you do desire to plan your own itinerary, be sure you research the local guidelines and make the necessary safety precautions, especially when traveling alone or in small groups.

Water Sports

Whether you’re traveling to the coast or visiting a lakefront destination, water sports are a great way to add some extra fun to your vacation. From kayaking and paddleboarding to jet skis and sailboats, playing on the water is a rare treat for most people, so take advantage of it if you’re vacationing nearby. If you want to relax, enjoy a casual lunch and take a swim, renting a pontoon boat is a great option. However, if you’re looking for an extra adrenaline rush, give parasailing a try. 

As you plan your next vacation, why not add an outdoor adventure to your itinerary? There’s something for every age, interest and group size out there, so give something new a try. You can enjoy a unique experience while creating life-long memories.

Western River Expeditions × Virtual Rafting

Virtual Rafting Tours Provide Connection and Stimulate Adrenalin During Pandemic Shutdown

Sitting on the shoreline of life pretty much sums up where the world is at.

“As a pandemic runs its global course, immobilized though we may feel, we don’t have to respond like a deer in the headlights,” said Brandon Lake, CMO of Western River Expeditions headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah. “Now is a great time to dream about future adventures and plan for the time when life returns to the new normal. This not only gives us something to look forward to, but I believe that exploring the outdoors with loved ones when it’s safe to do so, will become an important part of our recovery process, providing people with a sense of connection, interaction and celebration.”

This active travel company specializes in rafting the rivers of the Colorado River Basin. But for the first time in Lake’s memory, the rafts are empty, sitting on the shoreline. On April 1, Grand Canyon National Park closed, including river operations through May 21, 2020. Resumption of river trips will be evaluated later in May pending current CDC guidance.

To accommodate clients whose trips have been delayed by the pandemic, Lake and his team have been able to re-allocate their allotted permit spaces on some trips in the Grand Canyon for departures later in the 2020 season. They are assisting people in solidifying changes in plans and looking to open slots for them later this summer and in 2021.

Lake said he is “confident we will be able to find an available date for clients disrupted by early-season cancellations who are still interested in doing a Grand Canyon rafting trip.

The company has posted its latest Covid-19 news and trip status on its website to keep the public up-to-date. See: http://www.westernriver.com/covid-19.

Between now and when guests are able to re-embark on rafting adventures, Western River Expeditions encourages people to experience the Grand Canyon and other breathtaking locations via virtual tours. “We put these together before this all happened, but never thought we would be using them for accessing these special places in a time we would not be able to in person.”

Virtual Galleries in 360° Views
A few tips for optimal viewing:
1. View these on your big screen if you’ve got it.
2. Use your mouse/finger to drag the scene around and look wherever you choose.
3. Arrow buttons left or right OR the map will slide you to the next image.

4.Click on small white arrows in certain images, to explore deeper.

6 & 7 Day Grand Canyon Expedition
http://vr.trustedphoto.com/WesternRiverGrandCanyon6_7_Day/360tour.html

3 & 4 Day Grand Canyon Adventure
http://vr.trustedphoto.com/WesternRiverGrandCanyon3_4_Day/360tour.html

4 Day Cataract Canyon Adventure
http://vr.trustedphoto.com/CataractClassic/360tour.html

5 Day Desolation Canyon Adventure
http://vr.trustedphoto.com/GreenRiver5Day/360tour.html

With these 360° virtual tours the viewer is present, surrounded by the action of a river expedition in the comfort of their own home or office. Get lost in the moment and find oneself in a magnificent cavern. Tucked in a sleeping bag on the shoreline. Standing under a thundering side canyon waterfall. Viewing ancient Native American rock art. Running the West’s most famous rapids. And standing in line for a grilled salmon dinner topped off with warm Dutch-oven chocolate cake. The 360° technology is stunning.

For a copy of Western River Expeditions’ 2020/2021 catalog, questions, availability and reservations call toll-free: 866.904.1160 (Local: 801.942.6669) or visit the website at: http://www.westernriver.com/.

About Western River Expeditions
Western River Expeditions is an adventure travel company headquartered in Salt Lake City, with operations and offices in Moab, Utah and Fredonia, Arizona. Annually from March through October it escorts more people down rivers on professionally guided rafting trips in Utah, Idaho and Arizona than any other company. It is the largest licensed outfitter in the Grand Canyon and the largest single tour provider in Moab, UT, through its division Moab Adventure Center (http://www.moabadventurecenter.com/).

Western River Expeditions, providing Grand Canyon rafting, Utah and Idaho rafting, and international multi-sport trips, was founded in 1961 by Colorado River rafting pioneer Jack Currey. It has been named one of the “Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth” by the editors of National Geographic Adventure magazine. The company is the proud recipient of the “Best of State” award through Utah’s Premier Recognition and Awards Program for the past sixteen consecutive years (2004-2019).

Saddle Skeedadle’s Cycling Myths Unlocked:

Busting the Roadblocks Keeping Travelers out of the Saddle

Leading cycling operator Saddle Skedaddle sets the record straight on cycling’s biggest misconceptions.

Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. Feb. 3, 2020: Cycling tours have become increasingly more popular in recent years thanks to North America’s focus on wellness travel, sustainable transport methods, and getting away from centers of overtourism. As such, cycling operators are adapting to the modern traveler.

Saddle Skedaddle, the world’s leading bike tour operator with itineraries in nearly 40 countries, recognized a 140% increase in bookings from North Americans between 2014-2018, according to Paul Snedker, director and co-founder. But even as cycling tours are on the rise, Snedker says there are still a lot of misconceptions about this kind of travel that limits new riders from hitting the road.

“There’s are these ideas that you have to be a really fit athlete to do a cycling trip, or that it would feel more like going to the gym than a true vacation,” says Snedker. “But actually, they’re quite accessible for all fitness levels and a great way to explore a destination in an even deeper way.”

Here are some common cycling misconceptions, unlocked:

Myth 1: You have to be an Olympian to do a cycling tour

According to Snedker, the biggest customer concerns are that they won’t be fit enough to do it, or they’ll be the slowest one of the group. While some bike trips are designed for hard core cyclists, there is quite a range in terms of level of difficulty, and many of the tours designed for family or leisure purposes are quite gentle. 

“Many travelers think the whole group will be decked out in lycra and be world-class cyclists on a bit of a holiday,” says Snedker. “The reality is most of our guests are over 50 and are simply looking for a way to stay active on vacation. So long as you’re reasonably fit in your daily life, you’ll be able to keep pace on a lot of our trips.”

Snedker says one of the biggest game changers and gateways to cycling holidays for people who are nervous about their endurance level has been the introduction of electric bikes to Skedaddle’s roster.

“E-bikes are so fantastic at leveling the bike lane, so to speak,” Snedker says. “Not only do they provide that extra push when you need it the most, but they take away the fear factor in the build up to a trip, so travelers can really get excited without being nervous about the physical side of things.”

Responding to strong client demand, Saddle Skedaddle has been steadily introducing self-guided and guided electric bike trips over the last few years, including several to far-flung destinations including Vietnam, China, and Chile.

Myth 2: You won’t have time to explore off your bike

North Americans typically get very little vacation time, so when they do get away, they want to see more, do more, and experience more. According to Snedker, there’s a common misconception that cycling trips don’t give you time to explore the destination. In reality, Snedker says the opposite is true.

“At Skedaddle, we’ve always said we prefer pedaling through, not passing by,” he says. “What that means is your bike can take you so many places your car or a coach bus can’t, so you’re able to really bike deep into the culture and check out the little nooks and crannies of a village or a rural stretch of a dirt path you may never otherwise encounter.”

Some of Saddle Skedaddle’s most popular trips include activities like remote camping under the stars in the Simien mountains, hiking in the jungle of Jordan’s Ajloun Forest Reserve, spotting orangutans on a family-focused journey through Borneo, and hunting for the best tapas bar in a small Spanish village.

“Our customers have evolved; they want cycling to enhance their travel experience, not the other way around,” Snedker says.

Myth 3: International cycling travel is complicated

According to Snedker, many potential bike travelers get antsy about the logistics behind a bike trip, from how to transport their bike to how to read road signs in a different language. The reality is, though, it’s never been easier to cycle in other countries than this decade thanks to technology and updated airline policies.

Just last year, American Airlines dropped their overweight charges for traveling with bicycles, and thanks to apps like the one Saddle Skedaddle has developed, road signs and directions for self-guided trips are simple as keeping your phone mounted on your handlebars.

Of course, rentals and guided trips make all these logistics even easier. “While we have a full-service team on the ground that’s ready to greet guests – and their bikes – the moment they arrive, we also offer bike rentals throughout each trip to make things as seamless as possible,” says Snedker.

Myth 4: You can’t bring kids on a cycling trip

It’s no longer just empty-nesters – family cycling travel continues to grow in popularity as parents look for active ways to keep the whole gang engaged on vacations. However, a common misconception is that group cycling trips don’t really work for families, something Snedkern says couldn’t be more wrong.

“Cycling provides a memorable way to bond as a family on holiday – and I daresay is more exciting than driving around in the rented minivan!”

Saddle Skedaddle makes sure all its family trips include a variety of activities out of the saddle that interest teenagers as well as younger children. They welcome kids as young as two on its family adventures, ranging from exploring Viking history on the Lofoten Islands of Norway to zip-lining and camping through the Moroccan Desert , and rent bike trailers, tag a longs and kids’ bikes so the whole family can keep up at their own pace.

For more information and to pedal through your next adventure, please visit: www.skedaddle.com

About Saddle Skedaddle

Saddle Skedaddle is the UK’s leading independent cycling vacation specialist that is all about doing something wonderful on two wheels. Our team of experts have searched far and wide for nearly 25 years to bring you some of the world’s most incredible locations and enchanting cultures to enjoy at the speed of the bike. It’s time to really meet a place, and its people, you’ll never want to forget.

Szemui Ho, camping, hiking, illustration, 360 MAGAZINE

How to Go Back to Nature with a Fun Camping Trip

With our lives increasingly being led in fast-paced urban environments, with digital communications and social media being a large part of our lives, it’s perhaps unsurprising that many people are choosing to log-off, switch off, and head into nature for some peace and tranquility, especially in single person tents. It’s on these trips that you can rediscover yourself, find peace, and reset for the weeks ahead. As such, this guide is concerned with your wellbeing and enjoyment on such trips into the unknown – pushing you to the camping trip of your dreams. 

Pack Light

The impressive thing about serial campers is just how little they take. They know that the secret to a warm night’s sleep is as much about the quality of the fire they make as the quality of the sleeping bag they pack – and that thermals are a lot more efficient at keeping you warm than your biggest, fluffiest jumper. So, the tip here is to pack efficiently, and to pack light. Take only what you know you’ll need. Don’t lug lots of heavy things into the woods, only to lug them back the next day. Enjoy being free of possessions and stripping your life back to its essential elements – it’s all part of the fun. 

The Gear

Still, you will need some gear to truly appreciate the natural world and to make your experience of nature magical and enduringly memorable. One of the key elements of this is your fire-lighting equipment, and here you should consider using Ferro Rods: an old-school way to light a fire. Meanwhile, a small knife can be useful for sharpening sticks and helping to curate your wilderness home, and some simple cooking equipment – like a mug for tea and coffee, and a plate for the sausages and marshmallows you hold over the fire – are other great additions to you camping gear. 

Camping Spots

If you’re new to camping, you may not be well aware of the kinds of spots that are best for camping. Being by a water source can be romantic, but it’s also where flies, mosquitos and other creepy crawlies are most likely to gather. If you’re by the sea, bear in mind the changing tide and how it can raise the water level to flood your tent, even if you’re set far back from the shore. In fact, there general tip here is to camp on high ground, and under a tree for shelter from the worst of the rain – it’s the best way to stay safe and comfortable. 

Enjoy Freedom

This is your trip to reconnect with nature: don’t ruin it by constantly updating your social media, by taking a tablet to watch a film in bed, or by worrying about the world you’ve left behind. Instead, enjoy the freedom that a brief stay in nature can present in your life: dance around the campfire, or go running through a forest, along a beach, or into hills in giddy glee. It’s a wonderful experience – and one you should maximize in your time in nature.

There you have it: your guide to a ‘back-to-nature’ camping trip.