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Spacious Skies Markets 13-Park Spring Bloom Trail

Publication

Woodall’s Campground Magazine

Author

Woodall’s Campground Magazine

Published

February 22, 2022

Source

The new 13-stop Spacious Skies Campgrounds Spring Bloom Trail highlights the very best of springtime color, as the bloom of wildflowers progresses from the South to the North. The trail, which travels from campground to campground from South Carolina to Maine, encourages springtime travelers to celebrate the explosion of spring wildflower color with ideas for where and when to experience the bloom. 

The trail begins at Spacious Skies Belle Ridge in central Tennessee, where the wildflowers can be viewed as early as late March. The last stop on the trail is Spacious Skies Balsam Woods in the Maine Highlands, where wildflowers begin emerging in the region’s vast wilderness areas in early May.

The Spring Bloom Trail highlights a sampling of the wildflower species visitors to each location might see as well as the best spring-season activities such as festivals, fishing and farmers markets.

MAP OF TRAIL
“Spring is a time of renewal, and when the first wildflowers begin popping up through sometimes still-frosty ground, we know that the warmth, sunshine and adventures of the season have finally arrived,” said Ali Rasmussen, CEO and creative director of Spacious Skies Campgrounds. “Our mission as a growing company is to not only offer fun and authentic campground experiences, but to also support local attractions, artists and other makers, and the Spring Bloom Trail is another way we encourage our guests to explore each region by day and relax and ‘camp on’ at night.”

Spacious Skies Campgrounds Loyalty Program

For campers following the flowers along the Spring Bloom Trail, the new Spacious Skies Campgrounds Loyalty Program is a prime opportunity to receive a 12 percent discount on RV sites, cabins, glamping retro campers, yurts or lodgings at each stop. For a small annual fee, campers can join the program and automatically receive the discount every time they log in to their account and make a reservation at one or more campgrounds for stays less than a month long. To kick off the program, this fee will be $31.90 for the inaugural year, a nod to the company’s founding date of March 19, 2021.

“Our Loyalty Program is one way we can thank our most frequent visitors,” said Rasmussen. “Whether you prefer to visit a favorite park multiple times throughout the season or want to explore multiple campgrounds within the Spacious Skies collection, we are happy to reward those repeat campers with savings each stay.”

Each campground features different offerings, such as catch-and-release ponds, UTV trails and other on-site recreation. In addition to RV sites, many campgrounds offer glamping options like retro campers and yurts. Additionally, Spacious Skies Campgrounds has partnered with RV Share, with options for delivery of RVs and trailers to campgrounds as well as for self-driving. “Here are the stops along the Spacious Skies Campgrounds Spring Bloom Trail:”

1

Spacious Skies Belle Ridge, Monterey, Tenn.

  • Location: Western Tennessee’s Cumberland Plateau in middle Tennessee, between Nashville and Knoxville.
  • Campground open year-round.
  • Bloom begins in late March.
  • Wildflowers: Endangered Virginia Spirea, Purple Phacelia, Spring Beauty, Oxeye Daisy, Sweet White Trillium, Chicory.
  • Where to Spot:, Cummins Falls State ParkBurgess Falls State Park, Spacious Skies Belle Ridge UTV and hiking trailsTennessee Central Heritage Rail Trail.
  • Fun facts: More than 40 miles long, the Cumberland Plateau is the world’s longest plateau of hardwood forest. The plateau is home to nearly 60 threatened or endangered species.
  • What else to do: Celebrate the season at the Blooms, Bluegrass & BBQ Festival in early May. Learn about the region’s history at the Monterey Depot Museum.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Hidden Creek.
  • Drive time: 3 hours 40 minutes, 240 miles.

2

Spacious Skies Hidden Creek, Marion, N.C.

  • Location: Blue Ridge Mountains, 40 minutes from Asheville, in Buncombe county near the confluence of the French Broad and Swannanoa Rivers.
  • Campground open year-round.
  • Bloom begins in late March.
  • Wildflowers: Rhododendron, Mountain Ash, Daisies, Dogwood.
  • Where to spot: Craggy Gardens Pinnacle Trail along the Blue Ridge Parkway, Max Patch Summit in Pigsah National Forest, Lake James State ParkBiltmore EstateNorth Carolina Arboretum.
  • Fun facts: Since elevations along the Blue Ridge Mountains vary widely, visitors will find a huge array of wildflower species and a months-long, ever-changing wildflower bloom. The National Park Service reports that of all of the 1,600 plant species along the Blue Ridge Parkway to the north of the campground, 80 percent are wildflowers.
  • What else to do: Explore Asheville’s River Arts District. Visit Biltmore Blooms at the Biltmore Estate. Hike to Daffodil Flats in the Linville Gorge, a “ghost garden” that was planted by a homesteader long ago.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Peach Haven.
  • Drive time: 1 hour 12 minutes, 56 miles.

3

Spacious Skies Peach Haven, Gaffney, S.C.

  • Location: The Upstate of South Carolina in the midst of farmland and rolling hills not far from Greenville.
  • Campground open year-round.
  • Bloom begins in late February.
  • Wildflowers: Oconee Bell, Trillium, Balloon Vine, White Baneberry, Bulbous Buttercup, Bloodroot, Eastern Red Columbine, Butterflyweed, Narrowleaf Evening-Primrose.
  • Where to spot: Devils Fork State ParkTable Rock State Park.
  • Fun facts: More than 680 species of wildflowers bloom in the state of South Carolina. The rare Oconee Bell is only found in a few places in the Southern Appalachians, and it only blooms for two or three weeks, from mid-March to early April. The wildflower even has its own festival – the Oconee Bell Fest at Devils Fork State Park. The poinsettia appeared for the first time in the United States in Greenville when Joel Roberts Poinsett, a minister and amateur botanist who kept greenhouses on his Greenville plantation, found the poinsettia plant on a trip to Mexico in 1828 and sent cuttings home.
  • What else to do: Visit the famous Peachoid Water Tower. Tour Cowpens National Battlefield. Walk along the Trillium Trail at Nine Times Preserve. Celebrate the season at the Piedmont Plant & Flower Festival in late April.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Sandy Run.
  • Drive time: 3 hours 29 minutes, 191 miles.

4

Spacious Skies Sandy Run, Fayetteville, N.C.

  • Location: Carolina Sandhills in the heart of Cumberland County.
  • Campground open year-round.
  • Bloom begins in March.
  • Wildflowers: Jack-in-the-Pulpit, Creeping Phlox, Ironweed, Cardinal Flower, Flowering Dogwood, Siberian Wall Flower.
  • Where to spot: Cape Fear Botanical GardenJ. Bayard Park & Nature Center.
  • Fun facts: The North Carolina Department of Transportation features a wildflower program that seeds roadside wildflowers, ensuring that any spring road-trip in the state will be a colorful one. The department offers a free booklet to help visitors identify the flowers. The Siberian Wall Flower is one of the first blooms to appear.
  • What else to do: Experience the Fayetteville Dogwood Festival in late April. Spend a relaxing day fishing at the catch-and-release fishing pond at the campground.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Shenandoah Views.
  • Drive time:  5 hours 29 minutes, 331 miles.

5

Spacious Skies Shenandoah Views, Luray, Va.

  • Location: Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, near Shenandoah National Park and Skyline Drive.
  • Campground opens mid-March, closes mid-November.
  • Bloom begins in early April.
  • Wildflowers: Hepatica, Aster, Turk’s Cap Lily, Spiderwort, Anemones, Wild Azaleas.
  • Where to spot: Along Skyline Drivehiking trails in Shenandoah National Park.
  • Fun facts: There are more than 850 species of flowering plants in Shenandoah Valley, and the destination is considered one of the best places in the country to observe wildflowers. The region’s wildflower bloom lasts well into October.
  • What else to do: Participate in a Wildflower Weekend walk in the national park in mid-May. Explore the Shenandoah Heritage Village – Luray Caverns at Luray Caverns. Get into the local spirit at the River Hill Distillery.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Country Oaks.
  • Drive time:  4 hours 52 minutes, 243 miles.

6

Spacious Skies Country Oaks, Dorothy, N.J.

  • Location: Southern New Jersey, within an easy drive of Philadelphia and Atlantic City.
  • Campground opens mid-April, closes late October.
  • Bloom begins mid-April.
  • Wildflowers: Sea Rocket, Sea Lavender, Black-Eyed Susan, Purple Loosestrife, Crimson Eyed Rose Mallow.
  • Where to spot: Warren E. Fox Nature Center, New Jersey shoreline.
  • Fun facts: A wildflower called Sea Rocket grows in Sand Dunes along New Jersey’s shoreline.
  • What else to do: Sample wines from Balic Winery, where vineyards have been in operation since the early 1900s. Visit the Funny Farm Rescue and Sanctuary.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Woodland Hills.
  • Drive time:  4 hours 59 minutes, 259 miles.

7

Spacious Skies Woodland Hills, Austerlitz, N.Y.

  • Location: Taconic and Berkshire mountain ranges of Upstate New York near the Massachusetts border and close to Boston, New York City, Providence and Albany.
  • Campground opens early May, closes late October.
  • Wildflowers: Red Trillium, Wild Blue Phlox, Northern Wood Sorrel, Queen Anne’s Lace, Bee Balm, Goldenrod.
  • Bloom begins early April.
  • Where to spot: Berkshire Botanical GardenVanderbilt Mansion.
  • Fun facts: Wild Carrot, also known as Queen Anne’s Lace, is a medicinal herb that can be eaten when the plant is young.
  • What else to do: Visit the Norman Rockwell Museum. Drive to the summit of Mount Greylock.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Adirondack Peaks.
  • Drive Time: 2 hours 7 minutes; 133 miles.

8

Spacious Skies Adirondack Peaks, North Hudson, N.Y.

  • Location: Adirondack Mountains, near Lake Champlain and the northern reaches of the Hudson River.
  • Campground opens mid-May, closes mid-October.
  • Bloom begins in early April.
  • Wildflowers: Blue Flag, Cardinal Flower, Cottongrass, Pickerelweed, Northern Pipewort
  • Where to spot: Along walking trails at the campground, Hammond Pond Wild Forest.
  • Fun facts: Wildflowers in heavily forested areas like the Adirondack Mountains emerge before the trees of the forests leaf out, and they provide an important food source for insects. Spring wildflower season coincides with mud season in the Adirondacks, and one of the great ways to avoid the mud – and enjoy wildflowers along the shoreline – is by paddling one of the region’s many ponds, lakes and rivers.
  • What else to do: Rent a pedal bike. Visit the Adirondack Buffalo Company, a working buffalo farm. Explore Fort Ticonderoga on the edge of Lake Champlain. Learn about climate solutions at The Wild Center.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Minute Man.
  • Drive time: 4 hours 9 minutes, 202 miles.

9

Spacious Skies Minute Man, Littleton, Mass.

  • Location: Eastern Massachusetts, close to the heart of Boson.
  • Campground opens early May, closes late October.
  • Bloom begins in late April.
  • Wildflowers: Wild Orchid, Foxglove, Rosebay Willowherb, Meadowsweet.
  • Where to spot: Nashua River Rail Trail, hiking and biking trails at Oak Hill Park.
  • Fun facts: Littleton was first settled in 1686. Nearly a century later, the minutemen and militia of the town fought at Concord.
  • What else to do: Rent a canoe and paddle the Nashua River. Pick early season berries at Doe Orchards. Check out the Trail of Flowers, where volunteers plant thousands of flowering bulbs along the Assabet River Rail Trail every spring.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Seven Maples.
  • Drive time: 1 hour 14 minutes, 44 miles.

10

Spacious Skies Seven Maples, Hancock, N.H.

  • Location: Southwestern New Hampshire in the Monadnock Region, known for hilly terrain and abundant outdoor recreational activities.
  • Campground opens early May, closes late October.
  • Bloom begins in mid-May.
  • Wildflowers: Golden Alexanders, Wild Columbine, Sundial Lupine, Ohio Spiderwort.
  • Where to spot: Monadnock State ParkdePierrefeu-Willard Pond Wildlife Sanctuary.
  • Fun facts: Showy Wild Lupin feature purplish pea-like flowers on stems as much as two feet high.
  • What else to do: Rent a kayak and paddle the campground pond. Check out the home of the 14th U.S. President, Franklin Pierce.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies French Pond.
  • Drive time: 31 minutes, 22 miles.

11

Spacious Skies French Pond, Henniker, N.H.

  • Location: Southern New Hampshire, between the Merrimack Valley and Dartmouth regions.
  • Open every day except Feb. 15 – 28.
  • Bloom begins in early May.
  • Wildflowers: Lupine, Bluets, Pink Lady’s Slipper, Fringed Polygala, Blue Violets.
  • Where to spot: Clough State ParkMount Sunapee State Park, wooded areas and creek beds.
  • Fun facts: The Pink Lady’s Slipper is the official state wildflower of New Hampshire.
  • What else to do: Take a spring selfie at the Henniker Covered Bridge.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Walnut Grove.
  • Drive time: 1 hour 36 minutes, 75 miles.

12

Spacious Skies Walnut Grove, Alfred, Maine

  • Location: Central Southern Maine, with easy access to coastal cities like Portland, Old Orchard Beach and Kennebunkport.
  • Campground opens early May, closes late October.
  • Bloom begins in late April.
  • Wildflowers: Purple Violets, Yellow Violets, Sweet White Violets, White Trillium.
  • Where to spot: Wells ReserveMarginal Way Coastal Walkway.
  • Fun facts: Purple Violets bloom in early spring, and they can be found in meadows, woodlands and along the roadside.
  • What else to do: The Maine coastal region celebrates spring with festivals like the May Day Festival in Kennebunk. Farmers markets open in May and sell early spring produce like strawberries. Lobsters come into season in spring too. Check out the historic Old Orchard Beach pier.
  • Where to next: Spacious Skies Balsam Woods.
  • Drive time: 3 hours, 162 miles.

13

Spacious Skies Balsam Woods, Abbot, Maine

  • Location: Located in the heart of the Maine Highlands near Moosehead Lake and vast, unspoiled wilderness areas.
  • Campground opens mid-May, closes mid-October.
  • Bloom begins in mid-May.
  • Wildflowers: Painted Trillium, Blue Violets, Trout Lily, Trailing Arbutus.
  • Where to spot: Low’s Bridge and the banks of the Piscataquis River, Moosehead LakePiper Pond.
  • Fun facts: The Trout Lily is one of the earliest wildflowers to bloom, and it can be found in ditches along the roads as soon as the ground thaws.
  • What else to do: Springtime fishing is a thing, and “ice out” begins in April. Farmers Markets in the Maine Highlands open in May.
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