Jan 22nd
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Explore our Scenic Byways

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Family Adventures
Discover America's Scenic Byways

     Take to the road for a weekend getaway and experience the sites, views, and heritage along America’s Scenic Byways.  You’ll find a variety of National and State Scenic Byways throughout the U.S.  The following routes can often be enjoyed year-round, however, autumn usually offers less crowds, an array of fall colors, and inexpensive and fun family outings.  
     Try identifying the different species of shrubs and trees, learn why some turn colors and others don’t; create a fall leaf scrapbook, or make dried weed bouquets from the many unusual weeds; take along binoculars and a bird guide, for great peak migration sightings; make rubbings of tomb stones and informational plaques; learn to video a homespun documentary or set up scenes for great photos; and while in the car, read aloud or listen to audio taped stories of the time in history you’re visiting--bring the past to life.  Plan to stop often and bring picnics for along the way. (For more ideas in Travel Tips: Tips, Tricks, Tactics.)  

You can travel the full routes or selected sections of the following byways. Find more information at

The Natchez Trace Parkway encompasses some 400 miles from Natchez, Mississippi, on US 61 north through Jackson, and nearby Vicksburg--all three cities are rich in history; then cruise through Jeff Busby and Elvis Presley’s childhood home of Tupelo; take US 45 through Dogwood Valley; Rock Springs, Alabama; Tobacco Farm in Tennessee; and then into Nashville, renowned for its music.  You can drive leisurely through pine and hardwood forests, cypress swamps, along meadows full of fall flowers and amid bursting autumn colors; hike numerous scenic nature trails; tour antebellum mansions, and stop often to visit many other historic sites.  Open year-round.  Accommodations and camping located along the route. 
Natchez Trace Parkway Visitor Center

Nebo Loop Scenic Byway is only 37 miles long, however these few miles from Nephi to Payson, Utah offers spectacular scenery, and in autumn find beautiful fall colors.  This route through south central Utah is themed: “Reverence, Respect, Renewal.”  Mt. Nebo, at 11,877 ft., highest of the Wasatch Mountains, towers over the thick forests, clear lakes, and plentiful wildlife--these suggest reverence for the land; the variety of outdoor activities--fishing, hunting, camping, hiking, picnicking, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and also being the only National Forest Recreation that is fully accessible for the disabled--offer respect for the resources; and, the Native American history found along the route gives a sense of personal and ecological renewal.  You’ll find lodging in both Payson and Nephi, as well as the six campgrounds, which are often booked a year in advance.  Meet visitors from around the world traveling this scenic byway. Open year-round.
Nebo Loop Scenic Byway

Seaway Trail Scenic Byway extends for 454 miles along New York’s St. Lawrence River from Massena, gateway to the Great Lakes Seaway; passes by Boldt Castle in the Thousand Islands area; detours through historic Sackets Harbor and War of 1812 sites and continues to Rochester, the Flower City--both on Lake Ontario; then on to Niagara River and amazing Niagara Falls; and culminates at Chautauqua’s vineyards along Lake Erie.  Enjoy di-verse terrain, lakes, rivers, falls, agricultural areas, and forested parks, along with seasonal colors.  Several historic lighthouses line the coast as well as do many heritage sites; visit zoos in Buffalo, Rochester and Watertown; and, spot seasonal birds at the National Audubon’s Bird Areas.  Open year-round.  Accommodations and camping located along the route. 
NYS Seaway Trail, Inc.

Blue Ridge Parkway winds through the Appalachian hillside from the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park on the border of North Carolina and Tennessee.  Along the 469 miles, travelers find no billboards or traffic signals, rather green river valleys, hazy mountaintops, rolling pastures, hillsides of colorful flowers and vibrant reds and yellows of autumn.  Drive through quaint villages, view Appalachian cultural exhibits and the traditional mountain crafts; see Mabry Mill, Peaks of Otter, Linn Cove Viaduct, Craggy Gardens and Richland Balsam Overlook; hike numerous trails, maybe spotting deer, groundhog, skunk, fox, and a variety of birds; explore nearby historic sites and attractions off the parkway.  Lodging and campsites available along the route.  Open year-round.
Blue Ridge Parkway
Trinity Heritage Scenic Byway travels the trails, paths and routes used in the past by Native Americans, miners, and settlers.  Today the route is used by scenic drivers, history buffs, campers, hikers, fishermen, and kayakers.  Considered one of the most beautiful drives in Northern California, its 120 miles are set among Shasta-Trinity and Six Rivers National Forests and the Whiskeytown-Shasta-Trinity National Recreation Area--Mt. Shasta towers over 10,000 feet high in the distance; numerous lakes and rivers including the Wild and Scenic Trinity River; dense vegetation, home to many deer and neotropical birds during migration; and, a host of historic sites.  Travel Highway 299 from Shasta, main gateway to the mining fields then on to Whiskeytown; stages and freight wagons passed by the Tower House while headed to Weaverville, where gold was discovered. Here are found some of the oldest continually used buildings in California, along with the Joss House, a Taoist temple.  Trinity (Clair Engle) Lake nearby offers boating, swimming, fishing, and camping.  From Trinity River’s class II to V whitewater rapids to the majestic alpine peaks of Trinity Alps Wilderness, visitors can plan fun outdoor adventures.  You can learn of the Chimariko, Hoopa, Athabascan, Hokan, and Algonquin Indians as well as learn about the plight of the early Chinese immigrants.  And, finally continue to Blue Lake, Arcata, Eureka, Ferndale, and Crescent City on the coast.  Open year-round. Lodging located in cities along route.
Shasta-Trinity National Forest



Where was Solomon born?

This is Solomon, a new born Humpback whale. He provided hours of entertainment for our group of whale watchers. Where was Solomon born? Click here to find out.

Tips, Tricks & Tactics

...ideas to consider 

Tips on how to safely play under the summer's sun
and in the winter's cold.



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