Summer has officially ended, and travelers are trading in their swimsuits for light jackets, sweaters and binoculars. That’s because this is the amazing time of year to go looking for the beautiful fireshow of leaves that give up their green attire for a motif of red, yellow and orange.
According to a recent AAA survey, approximately 250,000 travelers will be on the road this fall for one specific purpose: To see the beauty of the fall leaves. We don’t know how they are all traveling, but we DO know that the travelers that will be the most comfortable are those who are viewing Mother Nature’s fashion show from the comfort of their Cruise America rental RV!
While fall leaves are abundant in so many places across our nation, there are some spots that are particularly popular with the RV crowd. Here are a few of them:
Many people are surprised to hear that there is great leaf looking in Bishop Creek, California. This is a very popular spot for photographers, as they snap pics of the fiery tones at the top of the canyon. There are twelve campgrounds where they can set up tripods. These campgrounds are maintained by the US Forest Service, and they are all within 20 miles from the canyon.
The changing leaves of northwestern Arkansas are best seen along the Ozark Highlands Scenic Byway. This 35-mile picturesque thoroughfare offers generous views of the color-changing vineyards and trees as it winds around the Boston Mountain range, across several waterways, including the Buffalo National River. The sweet gum, hickory, sassafras, maple and oak trees all flaunt their colors in unison, making this a spectacular drive.
The Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming is located just a few miles north of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, which is a top ski destination during the winter months. The park is full of aspen, willow and cottonwood trees that display beautiful hues of yellow and red. This is in addition to the snow-capped mountains and gorgeous shimmering lakes. Along with the changing leaves, you may spot herds of wild elk. The best viewing occurs in the third week of September.
The Washington Crossing Historic Park in Washington, Pennsylvania is where George Washington crossed the Delaware River on his 1776 route from Pennsylvania to New Jersey. It is also the home of the Bowman’s Hill Tower, which stands 125 feet in the air. Needless to say, on a clear day this tower offers leaf lookers a jaw dropping view of Bucks County and the 28,000 trees that live within. In addition to the magnificent scenery, the park hosts an authentic colonial encampment and market event, where you can purchase the many period-inspired items.
Few are the travelers that would expect Arizona to be a good leaf-viewing spot. However, in the Aravaipa Canyon Wilderness in Winkelman, Arizona you will be treated to some of the later-changing leaves (late November to mid December). Hikers along the unmarked trails will be treated to breathtaking vistas along the paths, one of which stretches along for 12 miles. Aside from the scenery, you may get to lay eyes on a variety of wildlife including ringtail cats, javelinas, coatis (tree-climbing racoon-like animals), bighorn sheep, all kinds of birds, and the majestic saguaro cacti nestled amongst the emblazoned willow, ash, cottonwood and sycamores.
The Salmon River Trail at Mount Hood National Forest in Sandy, Oregon offers a view of towering firs, several hiking trails, and a charging river packed full of spawning salmon. The 14-mile path that leads through Mount Hood National Forest can be hiked in its entirety, or you can choose just a segment of it for a beautiful day hike. The right trails lead you to the rocky headlands that sit above crashing waterfalls surrounded by beautiful ground foliage. The renowned and historical Timberline Lodge, built in 1930, is nearby, so if you’re a history buff, you may want to pop in for a visit. There is plenty of great camping in the area that will accommodate your rental RV.
The fact of the matter is that when you’re traveling in a rental RV from Cruise America, it’s hard to steer in the wrong direction. The journeys may be short or long, but they are all part of the overall experience of building family memories that will last a lifetime.