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The U.S. National Forest Campgrounds Guide web pages are loaded with tons of information about some 2,400 developed Forest Service campgrounds but there is more to experience than just the trees. The following articles provided here cover a little of what isn’t said. Most of the articles answer questions asked and fall into broad categories. These articles are intended to make the best of your time in a national forest and grassland memorable, safe, and great.

Please check back on a periodic basis as new articles will be added periodically (to the top of the list).



What’s a vault?

Once upon a time we were asked, “What is a “vault? Isn’t it where the Forest Service puts important papers?” A reasonable question for someone unfamiliar with the vocabulary used by the Forest Service. For Fred and I it was the question that demonstrated a need for a glossary of terms to go with our   Read More >>

Shopping for a tent

I think it is official – the 2017 camping season has ended. Retailers have cleared out a lot of their stock, making room to tempt you with 2018 stuff.  A new tent might be a super Holiday gift.  You might even see, as I have, local sporting goods store advertising inexpansive, as in $20, tents.   Read More >>

Good for How Long?

Time to put of old motorhome away for the winter and that means everything must be moved out.  Or does it?  Why can’t I leave some of the kitchen stuff in there?  It will be good for how long? Well, it turns out a lot of my pantry stuff can stay in the motorhome. Like   Read More >>

Halloween our national forests

I love camping in the fall.  The temperatures during the  day are comfortable and at night time a big old fuzzy wool blanket wards of any chilsl.  Campfires seem to blaze more brightly and all th mosquitoes are gone.  While others might feel a camping trip to celebrate Independence Day or Memorial Day is great,   Read More >>

Don’t be a headline this winter

Headline from last winter: Family in their recreational vehicle rescued from Oregon’s snow-covered wilderness There are lessons to be learned when explore national forests in during winter months. Lesson #1 – Check the weather forecast. Storms can surprise even the most experienced. A weather radio is essential to any traveler. I remember enjoying a delightful   Read More >>

Taking good photos using a cellphone

Okay! I admit it. I usually go with the old-fashion way of doing things. However, recently I made an enormous discovery – my cellphone takes pretty good photographs. Imagine not having to shlep my big old camera around with me?!?!? How great is that! My camera still takes super photographs and there is no way   Read More >>

Want a forest experience?

That’s what we were asked by a Forest Service employee the other day. You see, we generally call about a week head to make our appointment with the District folks. Even though we have selected a campground to stay at, Fred or I will ask if there is a campground they would suggest. Generally, the   Read More >>

Giarda – No fun at all

Lyme disease, West Nile disease, and Poison ivy – these are just a few potential dangers you’ll find in the forest. Another problem that is becoming more common – Giardia.  Although more cases are being seen across the country each year, medical staff remain unfamiliar with this nasty intestinal bug.  Hope this articles helps you   Read More >>

What is a National Grassland?

A National Grassland is – The areas designated as “grasslands” were settled in the 1800s under a variety of “Homestead Acts.”  These Acts opened the land to people, generally farmers, and helped to settle the west. Located mainly on the prairies of middle USA, a prolonged drought in the late 1920s into the 1930s caused   Read More >>

Opting for the Scenic Route

Had option of taking I-15 & 90 or MT Rt. 200 from Great Falls to Missoula. Since we have long been advocates for taking the “blue” or state highways, we took the scenic route of MT 200.   It was a little longer and the drive time was increased but still preferred it over the   Read More >>

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Fred and Suzi Dow