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The time to Go RVing is once again upon us! The snow in Michigan is melting quickly and we are ready to pack up the trailer and Go RVing! We already have quite a few weekends mapped out for 2015! This is going to be another great year for traveling, fun, adventure, and just being outdoors! There is nothing better than spending time with your family and your pets and experiencing nature together. Sure, you can vacation at some resort, and sit around and do nothing, or you can actually travel! Load up your RV, and hit the road, and actually see things, experience things, GO RVing! Some people tell us that "camping" is too much of a hassle. That is only because they don't know how to camp with style. Camping in an RV is easy! You can pre-pack everything you need, and then the day you are ready to go, just hit the road and go!
We always take our dogs camping with us, and we have a very informative video that we made to help make going on that RV trip with your pets even easier! One of the nice things about having an RV, is you can pack everything you need, and you are set for the entire season of RVing. We keep a notepad in our RV and if we run out of something (dog poop bags, extra treats, paper towel), we write it down, and when we get home, we re-pack the RV so that we are ready the next time we want to roll on out of our driveway! Taking a vacation with your dogs is a lot easier than you think! As long as you map out dog friendly RV parks, campground, and places to visit, you can create a memorable experience for both you and your dogs every time you go!
I would have to say one of my most memorable RV trips was to Drummond Island Michigan. It is an outdoor, back-roads paradise! To get there, you have to take a car ferry (and yes, your RV will fit on the ferry), which is pretty exciting in itself. The ferry ride is about 15 - 20 minutes long. There are many campgrounds and RV resorts on the island, but we choose to stay at the little Township park! It's a semi-modern park, with electricity, but no running water (so be sure to fill your tanks!). The campground is right on Lake Huron, and the sights could not be more beautiful! Our trip was just a weekend excursion, but we had a blast! We hiked every trail we could find, and drove all over in the middle of the woods. For being a small island, it felt like we could explore forever! The first day we were these, we had the top down, and the dogs were enjoying a million smells! I think they were smiling! The second day, we headed out on some back roads and watched the sky get darker, and darker, and well you guessed it, darker. We had our top down, so we were exposed to the elements, and sure enough, it started to rain. Not hard at first, just a sprinkle. By the time we turned around to head back to the RV, it was a full on downpour. The dogs were soaked, we were soaked, but never fear! I had extra towels and a blow dyer packed in the RV! On the bright, side, the dogs did not need a bath when we got home! Here is a photo of myself, my husband, Shelby, Oakley, and baby Memphis at the top of Marble Head on Drummond Island.
I get asked a lot "Why do you GO RVing?" and my answer is always the same. What better way to bond with your dogs, then go outside and explore nature together. We get to experience new locations together, discover new sights, travel in comfort, and sleep in style, all while enjoying the beauty that nature has to offer. What more could a person want! It's win win! That is also why every RVing trip we take, we are sure to make sure it's to a dog friendly location. If the dogs can't go, then we don't go either! After a long day of hiking, biking, and exploring, we are always glad to make it back to the campground and head to bed! Even our dogs sleep in style! Nothing but the best for our girls. This is where an RV is better than a Hotel. Traveling with dogs (in our case 3 dogs), can be a bit "ruff" at times. Many hotels will not allow pets, or don't allow pets over 20 pounds, or they charge an extra $10 - $20 per dog, which adds up quick! One of the reasons we bought our RV was so our dogs could have a home away from home. A place they are used to, a place they know, a place they are comfortable. Traveling to new locations can sometimes cause anxiety in dogs, and stress them out. But traveling from your home to your traveling home is much easier on a dog! They recognize the smells, and their favorite sleeping spots of course!
Do you need another good reason? NATURE! Nature and animals! We went camping at Muskallonge Lake State Park in the fall of 2014. It was our last big trip before the harsh Michigan winter rolled in. The fall colors were amazing at the end of September! The last morning we were there, we were woken up by our dogs making all kinds of noise. I assumed they just wanted outside, so I let them out, each on by one, and I stepped back into the RV to grab a coat. All of a sudden the dogs started going crazy, and if you have ever heard 3 huskies go crazy, it's loud. VERY loud. So I peeked my head outside, and all three girls are looking up, into a tree. It was still fairly dark, so we could not see what they were looking at. I grabbed our flashlight and headed back outside, and pointed up into the tree and quickly discovered what they were barking at! It was a Raccoon!
What an experience it was! We took advantage of the opportunity, and took a lot of photos of this little raccoon. It was estimated to probably only be a year or two old according to the park ranger. The dogs kept her up in the tree for a long time, so we had a lot of opportunity to take photos, and video too! Eventually I put the dogs back into the trailer, and we tried to make her feel safe enough to come down. We could tell she was getting tired, and needed to get back to where ever it is that she sleeps during the day. So with a little coaxing, tossing a few pieces of bread onto the ground, we got her to come down, and off into the woods she ran! The dogs were allowed to come back out to their tie out, and they knew she had left, but they still kept looking up in the tree. That was probably one of the coolest experiences of my life! Raccoon's are my favorite animal, so for me, it was a very special day!
Now I know many of you are wondering what our dream #GoRVing vacation would be. There are so many places we would love to travel to, but being Michigan Proud, we would have to say our dream trip would be a 5 - 7 day long dog friendly trip traveling the Upper Peninsula of Michigan! We would start out from our home and head north to the Mackinaw Bridge. Our first day would take us on an adventure to Mackinac Island! Did you know that dogs can ride the ferry over to the island? One we arrived at the island we would spend the day walking around all of the historical sites that the Island has to offer! This is something we have always wanted to do, but have not yet taken the opportunity to do. I didn't know how dog friendly Mackinac Island and city were until just recently! We would hike the island to Castle Rock, Fort Mackinaw, and stroll the streets of downtown. Did you know that no motorized vehicles are allowed on the Island, only horse drawn carriages and bikes! So I am sure the dogs would have a great time smelling all the horse smells! Most likely we would have a picnic in the park, PBandJ for us, and PB no J for the dogs (have to spoil them once in a while) and then around 5pm get back on the ferry and head back to Mackinaw City. I am sure by then, the dogs would be pretty tired, so we would head back to the RV, cook up some dinner over the fire, and head to bed!
The next morning, bright and early, we would jump in the RV and head west down US 2. Turning north at 77 to head towards the Seney National Wildlife Refuge. Certain times of the year at the refuge you can see huge Bald Eagles nests being built, or if it's later in the year, you can see the baby Eagles flying around! There is a chance to see so many different animals at the Refuge! If we are lucky, maybe we will even spot a wolf while driving through the Upper Peninsula of Michigan! After spending some time at the Refuge, we would continue to head north until we find ourselves in Munising Michigan, home of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. When traveling to National Parks with dogs, be sure to check the rules before hitting any trail. Some trails in National Parks are not dog friendly. We would travel into the park and head to Miner's Castle (dogs allowed) for an amazing view over Lake Superior, and check out the colors of Pictured Rocks. Munising, Michigan would be our stopping point for the day. Just outside of Munising there are at least 12 waterfalls that we can hike through the woods with the dogs too! Munising Falls, Horseshoe Falls, Scott Falls, Wagner Falls, Au Train Falls, Alger Falls, Whitefish Falls, well you get the point! Some of these are nice short hikes, and some of them are a bit longer. Thankfully, the dogs love to hike just as much as we do! They love to experience the smells of nature! After another day of hiking and seeing the sights we would head back to the RV for another night of rest, and of course, dinner over the campfire.
When we woke up we would continue heading west, past Marquette, heading towards Copper Country, the Keweenaw Peninsula! I was checking out www.GoRVing.com and I found out there is a scenic byway that is located in the Keweenaw called the Copper Country trail. It's 47 miles long and can take a few hours to a few days to travel the entire thing depending on how far you want to go and what all you want to stop and see! I think we would spend a few days in this area. We would be hiking with the dogs to old abandoned mine areas, ghost towns, creepy cemeteries, and even into the woods to find hidden waterfalls. There is actually an old mine that allows you to bring your dogs down into the mine called the Delaware Mine! The owners of the mine allow you to hike down about 90 steps deep into the mine. From there you can walk with your dogs down many of the carved out walls, and you can see the history of the mine. This is an experience that is not to be forgotten! The Keweenaw is an amazing place with so much to see and do. It's the perfect place to plan out a few days for an RV trip. It's also a place you can always go back to because there is always something new to discover!
There are so many more places we would love to go on a Michigan RV Trip. If there was time, after leaving the Keweenaw, I think we would head to the Porcupine Mountains State Park. This park is very dog friendly with many trails and sights! Waterfalls, mines, lake shore, and of course, Lake in the Clouds. The campgrounds in this area are a bit more rustic, but we have a generator for our RV and we would be just fine! Not too far from the Porkies is the Black River Scenic Byway. This awesome road follows the Black River and is a sight that should not be missed. As you travel along the road there are many signs to pull off and visit many waterfalls along the route. You can stop at each spot, hike down to the falls, and watch as the Black River continues to slowly carve away at the land as the water makes its way out to the mighty Lake Superior. The dogs always love going here because there are spots you can get right up to the river, and sip a nice cool drink, or dip your paws in!
All of this dreaming of traveling has me excited! Get outside, Go RVing! It's a wonderful way to bond with you family, or even your pets! Gather some friends and just hit the road! I am telling you, you won't regret it! We have so many amazing memories! The best food is made when out experiencing nature, trust me, this is true! If you aren't sure if an RV is for you, test it out and Rent one! It will give you the chance to test it out, and see if it's something you would enjoy! I am pretty sure you will! RVing has to be my favorite hobby. I can't wait until we get the chance to try out RVing in the winter! Yes, even in the winter, we want to get outside! Now it's your turn #FindYourAway and #GoRving ! It's time to make some memories, and explore everything the world has to offer!
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Go RVing via Burst Media. The opinions and text are all mine.