Big White Truck Cross-Country - Atlantic Coast Edition | OVERLAND BOUND COMMUNITY

Big White Truck Cross-Country - Atlantic Coast Edition

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bryceCtravels

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193
Charleston, SC, USA
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Bryce
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Campbell
Today has been amazing! But it’s not over yet. Tonight I’m going to hike Beech Mountain Firetower, still in Acadia, for the sunset. It should be amazing, and hopefully not much of a crowd because it’s Monday.

But today started at the Walmart on the mainland, again. It’s a nice place, I feel pretty safe there. Last night probably had 30 rigs overnight, and I’d recommend it for anyone. I was talking to a couple who is in a van and said they slept on the west side of the island at the end of a road, and I’ve thought about sleeping in the park, but the downside is if you do get a knock at 3am by the police/rangers. I don’t want to risk it, mainly out of convenience. I’m sleeping well for the first time since I left, I don’t want to mess that up.

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Something you see in the picture is a few solar panels, but something you can’t hear is the generators. I genuinely don’t understand why generators are so common still. With solar setups, like mine from Jackery, you can run anything a generator can, and SILENTLY. Of course you need sun, but you can also charge from a vehicles alternator, which is what I mainly do (through the cigarette lighter). And modern setups can last days or maybe even a week purely on the systems battery. Maybe I’m overlooking something, but there are cheaper, cleaner, quieter, less smelly, and easier to use systems than a generator. That’s been the only downside to Walmart. The generators are loud, but everyone does turn them off before 9 or 10, so at least it’s not all night.

Also, this bus was insane.

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Starting off the morning, I went on a hike. I’ll post the loop I took below, I would highly recommend it if you’re in Acadia. It was super scenic, with vistas and beaches. I did swim as well, water temp was 57f. Not bad, when I was in the Cascades it’s was around 35f, which I only lasted 15 seconds. It was super refreshing today midway through a long hike. I think, in total, I did 6-7 miles. Lots of elevation change and some scrambling. But it was worth it.

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That’s all I got for right now. I’ll post pictures of tonights hike sometime tomorrow. As for tomorrow, I might hit the upper peninsula of the park, Winter Harbor, and then head up near the CAN border, Cobscook Bay, West Quoddy Head Lighthouse, and if I can get a pic on the border I will. If y’all have any suggestions for stuff up that way, let me know!! I do need to be in Knoxville on the 10th, so I’ll probably only spend tomorrow in Maine then head back to check out New Hampshire for a few days. From Knoxville, I plan on cruising around WV/VA/TN/NC for fall colors, I’ll stay as long as I can!
 

ZRex

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I'm really enjoying your journey, Bryce. If you end up near Johnson City, TN again and don't feel like cooking give me a shout. I'd be happy to host a meal for you or go out for a bite with you. I wish I had the drive to get back into photography, my poor 5D3 sits in the camera bag waiting patiently for me to pick it back up, but seeing your photos is starting to give me that feeling again.

Cheers,
Mike
 

MattLodi

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All good. Darkroom is alright as of now, ideally I'd print everything locally (in Charleston) and be able to oversee everything, but that's a lot of work. I was talking to them the other day and they're about to launch a redesign of the entire site and payment systems. I'd wait to see how that looks before I launch on there. But they're great people and I've had 0 problems.
As for storage and cataloging, I keep everything I shoot on their original SD cards. I keep a copy of certain months on my MacBook (for instance, right now I have may 2021-september 2021 on my laptop so I can instantly look at those pics). I have 2 SSDs and a 2tb HDD which is cold storage. I copy everything from the SD cards to those drives every so often as a back-up. Always open to answering any questions, just let me know.
Thank you Bryce for the pretty exhaustive answer.
 

bryceCtravels

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Enthusiast I

193
Charleston, SC, USA
First Name
Bryce
Last Name
Campbell
I'm really enjoying your journey, Bryce. If you end up near Johnson City, TN again and don't feel like cooking give me a shout. I'd be happy to host a meal for you or go out for a bite with you. I wish I had the drive to get back into photography, my poor 5D3 sits in the camera bag waiting patiently for me to pick it back up, but seeing your photos is starting to give me that feeling again.

Cheers,
Mike
I mean, you offered, so it'd be rude not to take you up on that! I think I'm going to head home after the next week and wait for TN/NC to pop off mid/late October, so I'll probably hit you up then! I appreciate you reading, by the way. I hope you get out and take some pics, even if they're what you made for dinner or your bike in a parking lot. I started taking pictures because I couldn't remember where I'd been, it's great to look back as a reminder.
Thank you Bryce for the pretty exhaustive answer.
Of course.
 

bryceCtravels

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193
Charleston, SC, USA
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Bryce
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Beech Mountain was a flop…

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The hike was short, and steep. A bit of scrambling which is fun. The main problem is the fire tower is locked, and none of the reviews I read said that that was the case. A bit sad, but the sunset was still gorgeous through the trees. Though I wouldn’t recommend Beech Mountain for a sunset, it has the perfect view of the ocean for a sunrise, I’m sure it’s spectacular. Maybe next time.

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When I got done, I headed back to the campgrou- Walmart.

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Wherever I pop the tent, people stare. Many people have see RTTs online, but few in person. Attention isn’t a bad thing though, especially with my trucks wrap. And I love talking to people about it, which is odd because I generally don’t like talking. The following morning, a gentleman came up to me in the parking lot and was very curious, we spent probably 30 minutes going over everything. He and his wife just started their roadtrip, they’re from Indiana. They’ve been on the road 1 1/2 weeks, and first went east to Maine, and are now heading to Rushmore and then Colorado, basically the opposite of what I did a few months ago. I suppose I enjoy sharing the uniqueness of it all, living part time in a tent on top of your truck. Not many people can say they’ve done that. So if you ever see me, come say hi. I’ve done a few tours of my setup for people.

Then I drove north east to the Schoodic Peninsula. It’s still a part of the park, but it’s about a 30 minute drive and unlike the rest of the park, which is an island, it is a part of the mainland. This is what I, and probably you, imagine when you think Acadia or Maine. Far fewer people, far less noise, but still cliffs, water, islands dotted everywhere, and all the rest. If you go to Acadia NP, I would say this is where you should spend most of your time.

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From there, I drove to the easternmost point in the US, Quoddy Head Lighthouse. There’s not much to say besides that. It was incredible gorgeous, and also quite quaint with a light crowd. I’d recommend checking this out as well, I drove 1 1/2 hours out of my way to see it.

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That leaves me here, at the Quoddy Head gift shop parking lot. I think I’ll head to a nearby national wildlife refuge, they always allow camping. From there, it’s back to New Hampshire. I do have to be in Knoxville on Sunday, so I think the plan is to go back to Charleston until TN/NC/VA start to get real color, probably mid October. The fall colors have been a bit later than expected this year. I’ll cruise back out and shoot all of that when it shows up. I might bring a dog with me as well, who knows.

I’m glad y’all enjoy these posts by the way, they’re a great way for me to look back at where I’ve been, basically a daily journal. Who knew others would like them too.

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bryceCtravels

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193
Charleston, SC, USA
First Name
Bryce
Last Name
Campbell
Last night, I drove from the Gift Shop to Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge. While they don’t explicitly allow camping from what I saw, there are no signs prohibiting it. It was insane. I could see the Milky Way with the naked eye. I was too exhausted to take pics, and it got down cold enough for the ground to frost. I’ve only seen the Milky Way a few times, and each time it makes you do a double take.

Where I slept was only a short walk from the ocean, though I couldn’t hear it. It was extremely humid though. When I went to bed, the walls of the tent inside and out were soaking. When I woke up, my blankets and sleeping bags were soaked too. I threw everything into the truck to dry and headed out.

The main goal for today was to drive the Mt Washington Toll Road. And I did just that. It was about a 6hr drive from where I slept, and I stopped a few times to eat (hotdogs/snacks) and send postcards from a middle-of-nowhere post office.

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The entrance fee was $45, which I thought was a bit steep, but it’s absolutely worth it. The weather is insane, it changes every minute. Fun fact, the highest winds on planet earth were recorded here, 231mph. It’s only a bit shorter than Mt Mitchell, but because of the terrain, the view is on par or better than Mitchell in my opinion.

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It was also a good place to dry out the tent.

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But sadly that’s all for today, the sun sets pretty early up here this time of year. I’m sure I’ll find a scenic campsite tonight, the leaves are popping off right now, it’s insane. Tomorrow I’ll drive two scenic highways then make my way south, I’m sure I’ll get some great pictures to share. It looks like I’ll be in Knoxville Sat/Sun to pick up my girlfriend who flew in to see some friends, drive her and I back to Charleston, spend a few days at home, then cruise back up. The Blue Ridge Mountains should be good from the 10th-25th or so, I’ll probably drive up on the 11th or 12th and stay until there’s nothing left to see. That’s when I’ll get some real good pictures, I know those mountains like the back of my hand.
 

bryceCtravels

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Time flies. As soon as I go a day without writing these posts, I instantly lose track of everything.

Like I said in the last post, I thought I’d find a scenic place to camp. Well, New Hampshire did not disappoint. I slept on a highway pullout (hwy 16), hidden by a few trees. A short trek led me to the real New Hampshire.

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Available as prints at brycectravels.com

After watching the sun rise through the trees, I went for a swim in that river. It was probably in the 50s, not cold but a bit chilly. A few months back I met a gentleman who lives in a van who had a rule. If he saw somewhere to swim, he did. Doesn’t matter how cold or uncomfortable. Now I subscribe to that, almost out of regret. “Oh, I could’ve swam in Glacier NP, or the Cascades, or a stream in New Hampshire, but I didn’t because it would’ve been too uncomfortable.” That’s no way to live. So I always jump or dive in.

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Such a great way to start the day. I almost drove away without jumping in. I would've regretted that so much.

Up next was Cathedral Ledge. I drove the road to the top, and took a short stroll to the edge. It was gorgeous, as expected. New Hampshire impressed me every single day. Even the gas stations. I picked up this cinnamon bread and a sausage egg and cheese for $4.

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From there, I drove the Kamcanmagus Highway. The leaves were perfect, as was the weather. 70f and sunny.

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When I finished driving the highway, it was time to head towards Knoxville. I made it to MA, and set up camp for the night.

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This spot was absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately the river was extremely loud, I thought I'd be able to sleep. Along with the noise, the humidity was insane. I was soaked, my sleeping bag was soaked, the tent was literally dripping. When I woke up at 1am, there was mist spraying into the tent. I moved a bit downstream and everything was great.
 

bryceCtravels

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Charleston, SC, USA
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Bryce
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The next day was all driving. There’s something therapeutic about it, especially in Big White Truck. Before I started taking road trips, I would find excuses to drive. To Costco to get a churro, to the beach to watch the sunset, even taking trash to the dumb 45min away. Nowadays gas is pretty expensive so that doesn’t make much sense, but those were some good times.

I drove around 15 hours Friday, and slept at a truckstop 2 hours out of Knoxville. Saturday morning I showered at Planet Fitness, made a bagel in the parking lot, and got to Knoxville around 9:45. I figure people probably want to see how I sleep in truck stops, so next time I'll take pics. I have a bench seat in my truck, so I just lay width-wise with some blankets. Towels in the windows to block sight, and a window shade on the windshield. But more importantly, I had Waffle House for the first time in a minute.

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In Knoxville, there was the UT/USC game so the city was pretty packed. Not much to do on gameday. So I picked up my girlfriend and we headed to the Ft Dickerson Quarry. This place is genuinely insane. We were there pretty much all day, as were a few others. It’s a great place to swim/jump/dive. Water temp was in the 70s, air in the 80s, sun was out. Genuinely perfect. The quarry itself is 350ft deep, and the water is a deep blue. The city bought it and has been turning it into a park, and it’s obvious why.

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That night we cruised south into some federal forest land and slept down a road. Not very scenic, kind of close to the highway, but the main goal was to get out of the city and sleep in the tent.

We needed to be in Charleston Sunday night, so we had all day to sightsee on the way back. It didn’t end up going as planned. We drove the Tail of the Dragon… on a Sunday. The road was packed, and of course, I was probably the slowest and heaviest vehicle there that day. Constantly pulling off to let bikes and Porsches pass. It was gorgeous, for sure, but probably not something you do on a 75 degree Sunday morning in autumn. Lesson learned, and totally my mistake.

From there, we drove the nearby Foothills Parkway through Smokey Mountains NP, which gave more scenic vistas. If that’s what you want, this is a better choice of road.

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From there, we drove to Hendersonville, and watched the sunset on the Parkway near Mt Pisgah. I do love North Carolina, and Appalachia in general. At the time of writing I’ll be heading back up in a day or two.

From the parkway, we drove down 26 into Charleston. I’m surprised my heart didn’t stop with the 24oz Redbull and Monster coffee. I got home at 2:30, which wasn’t even really that late. I don’t know why I was so tired, but definitely a day to remember.

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bryceCtravels

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Charleston, SC, USA
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Like I said, I'm only in Charleston for a few days before I head back into the mountains. When we were on the parkway, most of it was green. I think I have a bit of time before I head up Thursday morning. For now, it's been great to stop back home. I forgot hiking boots, the poles for the tent awning, and there was a bit of mold on the piece that separates the mattress from the tent itself (so air can flow, ironically), and I definitely needed to vacuum. All stuff I normally would do on the road, but it's easier at home.
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ThundahBeagle

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Last night, I drove from the Gift Shop to Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge. While they don’t explicitly allow camping from what I saw, there are no signs prohibiting it. It was insane. I could see the Milky Way with the naked eye. I was too exhausted to take pics, and it got down cold enough for the ground to frost. I’ve only seen the Milky Way a few times, and each time it makes you do a double take.

Where I slept was only a short walk from the ocean, though I couldn’t hear it. It was extremely humid though. When I went to bed, the walls of the tent inside and out were soaking. When I woke up, my blankets and sleeping bags were soaked too. I threw everything into the truck to dry and headed out.

The main goal for today was to drive the Mt Washington Toll Road. And I did just that. It was about a 6hr drive from where I slept, and I stopped a few times to eat (hotdogs/snacks) and send postcards from a middle-of-nowhere post office.

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The entrance fee was $45, which I thought was a bit steep, but it’s absolutely worth it. The weather is insane, it changes every minute. Fun fact, the highest winds on planet earth were recorded here, 231mph. It’s only a bit shorter than Mt Mitchell, but because of the terrain, the view is on par or better than Mitchell in my opinion.

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It was also a good place to dry out the tent.

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But sadly that’s all for today, the sun sets pretty early up here this time of year. I’m sure I’ll find a scenic campsite tonight, the leaves are popping off right now, it’s insane. Tomorrow I’ll drive two scenic highways then make my way south, I’m sure I’ll get some great pictures to share. It looks like I’ll be in Knoxville Sat/Sun to pick up my girlfriend who flew in to see some friends, drive her and I back to Charleston, spend a few days at home, then cruise back up. The Blue Ridge Mountains should be good from the 10th-25th or so, I’ll probably drive up on the 11th or 12th and stay until there’s nothing left to see. That’s when I’ll get some real good pictures, I know those mountains like the back of my hand.
Did Mt Washinton Auto Road just over a year ago. Everyone should do it once
 

ThundahBeagle

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Time flies. As soon as I go a day without writing these posts, I instantly lose track of everything.

Like I said in the last post, I thought I’d find a scenic place to camp. Well, New Hampshire did not disappoint. I slept on a highway pullout (hwy 16), hidden by a few trees. A short trek led me to the real New Hampshire.

View attachment 212363View attachment 212361View attachment 212362View attachment 212366
Available as prints at brycectravels.com

After watching the sun rise through the trees, I went for a swim in that river. It was probably in the 50s, not cold but a bit chilly. A few months back I met a gentleman who lives in a van who had a rule. If he saw somewhere to swim, he did. Doesn’t matter how cold or uncomfortable. Now I subscribe to that, almost out of regret. “Oh, I could’ve swam in Glacier NP, or the Cascades, or a stream in New Hampshire, but I didn’t because it would’ve been too uncomfortable.” That’s no way to live. So I always jump or dive in.

View attachment 212365View attachment 212370

Such a great way to start the day. I almost drove away without jumping in. I would've regretted that so much.

Up next was Cathedral Ledge. I drove the road to the top, and took a short stroll to the edge. It was gorgeous, as expected. New Hampshire impressed me every single day. Even the gas stations. I picked up this cinnamon bread and a sausage egg and cheese for $4.

View attachment 212364

From there, I drove the Kamcanmagus Highway. The leaves were perfect, as was the weather. 70f and sunny.

View attachment 212367

When I finished driving the highway, it was time to head towards Knoxville. I made it to MA, and set up camp for the night.

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View attachment 212369

This spot was absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately the river was extremely loud, I thought I'd be able to sleep. Along with the noise, the humidity was insane. I was soaked, my sleeping bag was soaked, the tent was literally dripping. When I woke up at 1am, there was mist spraying into the tent. I moved a bit downstream and everything was great.
Could that swimming hold have been Diana's Baths in Lucy Brook? Been there as well and it sure is nice. Crawford Notch contains the very first hiking trails in NH. I'm in Mass and NH is the nicest, fastest getaway. I always enjoy my time up there
 

Dusther210

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Tuesday feels like years ago, so it's time I recap what I've been up to.

Tuesday was a lazy day, I spent it in the tent writing the previous posts, editing pictures, and doing general work, thanks to the Jackery solar setup. The weather was perfect, maybe the mid-low 60s. The sun shined both days, and it rained (sprinkled) in the evenings. Definitely a great break from driving from South Carolina.

Speaking of rain, I wrote about this in the Roofnest Sparrow EYE review on my website, but the tent has been great in rain and snow for the 90+ nights I've spent in it. No water ever gets inside, except for condensation from breathing. It's a great relief to know I can go somewhere and sleep and not worry.

Moving on, Wednesday.

I was still in New York, so I drove up through Tupper Lake to the Mt Arab fire tower. The hike was fantastic, great weather, low traffic. The view was absolutely insane though.
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Something I'm not afraid to admit, I genuinely hate cooking. I don't like to do it at home, but on the road, I rarely have a choice. If I'm in a place for a day, I really spend a majority of the day cooking, cleaning, or preparing food. It's mind boggling how much time it takes.

All that to say, I went to Main Street Restaurant after the hike in Tupper Lake. I had the omelet, add everything. I don't know if I was just starving, but that was the best damn omelet I've ever had in my life. The restaurant was quite dark so I didn't take a picture, but if you're ever in town, stop by there for sure.

After the omelet, I headed up to Whiteface Mountain. It was cloudy, but still worth it.
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One of the biggest differences I've seen between things up here and in my time out west has been tolls. A road like this would be free or a part of a national park if it was out west. Up here everything is a toll road. Some of them can be quite expensive, I paid $30 this morning for one which I'll post about later. $20-$30 is average from my experience, and that's around the price to get into a national park without a pass, so I suppose all is equal. Another difference is public camping, but that's a whole other post.

Oh wow! I was camped at moose river plains 28sep-1oct. We went through tipper lake and went to Whiteface on the 30th (Thursday)

It would’ve been cool if we bumped into each other!

Really cool trip and thread you got going here!
 

bryceCtravels

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Could that swimming hold have been Diana's Baths in Lucy Brook? Been there as well and it sure is nice. Crawford Notch contains the very first hiking trails in NH. I'm in Mass and NH is the nicest, fastest getaway. I always enjoy my time up there
Ahh unfortunately (or maybe fortunately!) not. I drove past the sign for Diana’s Bath and wasn’t sure if it was worth stopping at! If you’re looking for the spot, it’s a pullout somewhere along this stretch of 16. If you drive north from Jackson, it’ll be on your right. If you get to the ski resort with the huge gravel parking lot, you’ve gone too far. I could’ve spent days sitting along that river, even with noise from the Highway. I bet it’s super luxurious in the summer.
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bryceCtravels

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Oh wow! I was camped at moose river plains 28sep-1oct. We went through tipper lake and went to Whiteface on the 30th (Thursday)

It would’ve been cool if we bumped into each other!

Really cool trip and thread you got going here!
Oh man I heard a lot of good things about Moose River Plains! Definitely gonna stop next time I’m up there. How did you like it??
And we probably came within a few ft of eachother at some point haha. Thanks also, I only write these posts because people read them!
 

Dusther210

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Oh wow! I was camped at moose river plains 28sep-1oct. We went through tipper lake and went to Whiteface on the 30th (Thursday)

It would’ve been cool if we bumped into each other!

Really cool trip and thread you got going here!
Oh man I heard a lot of good things about Moose River Plains! Definitely gonna stop next time I’m up there. How did you like it??
And we probably came within a few ft of eachother at some point haha. Thanks also, I only write these posts because people read them!
I don’t think there’s a bad site in MRP, but there are some epic ones. On my trip up there I think my best shots were in MRP. A good 5-7 days could be enjoyed there
 
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ThundahBeagle

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Ahh unfortunately (or maybe fortunately!) not. I drove past the sign for Diana’s Bath and wasn’t sure if it was worth stopping at! If you’re looking for the spot, it’s a pullout somewhere along this stretch of 16. If you drive north from Jackson, it’ll be on your right. If you get to the ski resort with the huge gravel parking lot, you’ve gone too far. I could’ve spent days sitting along that river, even with noise from the Highway. I bet it’s super luxurious in the summer.
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Thanks for the tip! Diana's Bath is a nice spot, but it is also very well known. Depending on the time of day, you could be there alone, or with 40 other people. So, while nice, it can get busy. I'd wager that right about now, few people are wading into the river.