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Suzi’s Blog

The U.S. National Forest Campgrounds Guide website,, is a wealth of information about developed campgrounds in all 176 national forests and grasslands across the country. It is basically an encyclopedia, straight forward and impersonal. Suzi’s Blog adds a little personal touch to the website with postings about our experiences, adventures, and discoveries along with other postings related to camping, national forests and grasslands, and family fund.

I am Suzi Dow and I hope you will find something interesting, something helpful, something informative, but mostly something that will help you get out and discover our national forests and grasslands.

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 >>

Outside Magazine’s: Staff Picks: Our Favorite Public Lands

In the article titled “Staff Picks: Our Favorite Public Lands” some guys at Outside Magazine identified their favs.  Can’t argue with their picks but I found it interesting that all but one fav was national forest. They were New Mexico’s Carson National Forest (NF), Mark Twain NF (MO), Rio Grande NF (CO), Green Mountain NF   Read More >>

Harvesting Forest Bounty

When camping with my children, a favorite activity was harvesting a forest’s bounty.  Now I must pick by myself and harvesting forest bounty continues to be a favorite activity. Blueberries for our breakfast pancakes.  Respberries to top a bowl of vanilla pudding.  Big fat blackberries picked while hiking for a quick snack.  Good eating. Fred   Read More >>

GVWR, GAWR, UVW – What’s it all about?

Alert!  When buying a recreational vehicle (RV), proper attention paid to weights and weight ratings will pay dividends in handling and safety.  A bonus is fewer mechanical problems down the road. Here are some articles to help newbee RV buyers: Understanding Gross Vehicle Weight Rating Base Curb Weight, GVW, GVWR, Tongue Weight.  What does it   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 >>

Curlew National Grassland

Located northwest of Salt Lake City, UT and just across the stateline into Idaho, is the amazing Curlew National Grassland. The grassland’s history From what I have read this valley was all tall grass prairie when the white man came. It was thought to be prime hunting grounds. Than the railroad rolled through. Next came   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 >>

Care for your boots

I have long held the opinion that one should first invest their money in quality hiking boots.  After investing that much cash in this essential piece of outdoor gear, one should take care of it.  Here are some tips from Dave Page, REI’s go-to person for footwear repairs, and called ”a Veteran Boot Doctor” by   Read More >>

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Fred and Suzi Dow