Wenatchee National Forest and Windy Pass

Contributed by Michael Restivo of Mike off the Map

Hidden deep in the Wenatchee National Forest, past the devastation from an old forest fire, and inside a valley of jagged peaks, is one of the most scenic vistas in Northern Washington. The hiking here is mild, the panorama is breathtaking, and the trails are barely touched. Marmots scramble among the rocks, pristine alpine lakes dot the countryside, and massive granite walls rise next to the trail. Pitch a tent on the lakeshore; hike just a few miles above camp, and the reward is a vista over the Cascades, and a panorama of Mt. Stuart’s monumental north face. Camping in Wenatchee National Forest is as much a must-do as hiking through the Enchantments.

A pink flower blooms at Wenatchee State Forest

Image Credit: Michael Restivo

The trailhead starts just outside of Leavenworth, and swiftly rises through the bush, opening to a vast land of barren trees, ash-colored logs, and dry grass. Looking at the hillside, one can see how widespread the forest fire was. Dead branches rise far above the hills, broken, gray trunks are cut in half for the trail to run through, and the landscape is dusty, arid, and rocky. This portion doesn’t reflect the nature of the trail, but it serves as a reminder of the incredible re-growth that is taking place.

A marmot rests on a rock

Look for marmots as you hike. [Image Credit: Michael Restivo]

At the intersection of two lakes, the trail ascends through a series of rough switchbacks, quickly gaining elevation and entering a lush, northwestern pine forest, providing respite from the exposed hillside. In the background, the serrated Stuart Range rises above the hills. A glimpse of Mt. Stuart tantalizingly peeks out towards the north.

A mountainous landscape in the Wenatchee National Forest

Image Credit: Michael Restivo

The trail descends down to Upper Lake Caroline, set among tree-lined hills, forests, and a marsh, with some semi-developed campsites right on the lakeside. Wenatchee National Forest is a preserve for a wide variety of animals, such as elk, deer, bear, and one of Washington’s only packs of wolves. As our group slept, we awoke to a perfect howl piercing the night from the adjacent cliff. With proper precautions, wolves and other animals do not pose any threat to people.

Beautiful landscape with mountains, forest, and creek in Wenatchee National Forest

Image Credit: Michael Restivo

The Windy Pass switch starts just behind the campsite, ascending on a grassy hillside with the Stuart Range in full view, and continuing along a lush prairie where marmots whistle and scamper between the rocks. The splendor of the Windy Pass trail is early in the morning, when the sun is rising from behind the hills and the landscape shines in colorful late-summer and early fall hues.

A scenic vista from the summit of Windy Pass

Image Credit: Michael Restivo

Never rising above a moderate grade, the trail follows several hills, and climbs one last, steep uphill, before looking out onto the magnificent vista. Windy Pass looks out upon the North Cascades, with Glacier Peak and Baker rising on the horizon. Looking to the right, the snow-swept face of Mt. Stuart’s north side overshadows the terrain. As the second highest non-volcanic peak in the state, Stuart is a prized peak from a hikers and climber’s perspective. Its jagged architecture and steep lines are awe-inspiring.

The trail winds back through forest and fire zone, with the downhill making the return an easier and faster trip to the trailhead. For the post-hike celebration, head to Leavenworth, a nearby German-themed town for food and local beers.

A rocky summit in Wenatchee National Forest

Image Credit: Michael Restivo

When the crowds are through hiking the Enchantments, overtaking the Olympics, or invading the North Cascades, the Wenatchee National Forest is quiet, relatively untouched, and offers massive views with moderate trails. It’s an area that is quietly growing back from the ashes of the forest fire.

Hiking With Your Pets

Both you and your pets love the outdoors. So, why not hit the trail together? Trekking with animals helps you slow down, relax, and explore the outdoors in a whole new way. Here are a few companions that would happily hike to the summit with you.

Hiking with Dogs

You bring your dog for walks, so it’s an obvious next step to bring them hiking with you. Sure, your dog probably won’t care about the scenic vista at the summit, but he’ll be pysched to just spend some woodsy quality time with you. Looking to get out more pent-up puppy energy? Have your dog carry their own water and snacks in a dog pack. On those longer, tougher treks, invest in some dog booties; these reduce the potential for ripped foot pads.

Hiking with Goats

A small herd of Alpine goats make their way through the woods

A small herd of Alpine dairy goats tackle the trail [Image: willowwittranch.com]

Don’t limit your goat to the barnyard! Goats are intrepid hikers, specially suited to tackling rough terrain with gusto. The best part about hiking with goats? Other than the inevitable cute, King-of-the-Mountain moments, a goat will carry gear for you. A goat can carry 25-30% of its body weight; that translates to about 35-60 pounds of gear per goat! Consider hiking with wethers (castrated males) or, if you’re camping and would like fresh milk for your morning coffee, bring along a milking doe. Since goats are social animals, it’s best to bring more than one.

Hiking with Cats

So, you can’t expect a cat to carry things for you nor can you milk them. And not all cats are going to be cool with the idea of wearing a harness and heading out into the woods. However, there are cats (especially breeds like Bengals, Pixie-bobs, and Savannahs) that are just thirsting for the mountains and other wild places in the world. How to start hiking with your cat? First, get your cat used to walking on a leash. Do this by heading out into the backyard a few times, and just milling around together. Once comfortable with its harness, you can journey out onto the trails. Wear a sturdy framed backpack, so when your cat is tired, you can shoulder your best friend and hike on.

Hiking with Llamas

A girl walks a llama in the woods

Image: blog.timesunion.com

For hundreds of years, people of the Andes mountain range have been hiking with llamas. Llamas are surefooted, agile creatures, well-suited for rocky terrain. They are adept at browsing for food while hiking, and cause no more impact in the high country than deer. Llamas are also great guardians. On farms, they are used to protect goats and sheep, but when hiking, they guard their human friends against bears, coyotes and panthers. Planning a backpacking trip? Consider taking along a llama or two. Your back will thank you! Just like goats, llamas make great pack animals. Llamas can comfortably carry up to 25% of their body weight, so an average of 75 pounds of equipment per llama. With a llama, you can say goodbye to the days of carrying heavy stuff, like camping stove and tent!

Hiking with Pet Pigs

A pot-belly pig with a backpack on hikes in Malibu

Romeo, the pot-bellied pig enjoys jaunts in Malibu Creek State Park, CA [Image: Jessica Feldman]

While your pet pig probably won’t be tackling the AT or the PCT, leashed pet pigs would be happy to amble down a woodsy path or two with you. Adult pot-bellied pigs and micro-pigs are often sedentary and are not particularly agile, but they still need exercise. Make sure to choose reasonable trails that both of you can appreciate. If your pig is especially spunky, consider buying a larger dog pack and saddling him with water and snacks to enjoy together at the summit.

Hiking with Parrots

Why leave your parrot home when you both could be climbing to new heights in the great outdoors? Admittedly, taking a bird hiking is a bit of an endeavor, but this doesn’t mean that it won’t be awesome. Unless your feathered friends are insanely well-trained, keep your parrots wing-clipped and on a leash so you won’t lose them. If you’re not comfortable with having your bird on your shoulder, get yourself a portable bird carrier. Some models are styled like backpacks, and are perfect for hiking. You can also add a perch or two to your backpack frame.

Hiking with Donkeys

A woman hikes alongside her pack donkey

Image: www.enlightened-traveller.co.uk

Donkeys make ideal hiking companions. Donkeys are friendly, child-safe, sure-footed, and adept at carrying heavy loads. Guiding a donkey along a trail has been compared to walking a dog; it is that easy to do! Donkey trekking is popular in Europe, but can be enjoyed just as much here in the States. A donkey can comfortably carry 88 pounds, and is a great buddy to have for longer excursions. If you and your family are hiking, donkeys are perfect for carrying younger, tuckered-out kids, so that way everyone makes it to the summit and back again.

Before hitting the trails with your furry friends, be sure to check the rules and regulations at your state parks by using your state’s Pocket Ranger® app. 

Suggested Gear List:

  • Binoculars
  • Backpack
  • Camera

Check out our Pocket Ranger® Gear Store for these items and much more

Do you take your pets on hiking trips with you? We’d love to hear about your hiking adventures!

Your State’s Insect

Do you know your state’s insect? While exploring your state park, try spotting one of these insects. Once you find them, snap a photo and post it to our social media sites!

Your State’s Insect


Connecticut's State's insect; Green praying mantis on a green leaf

Image: animals.nationalgeographic.com

This state’s insect is the praying mantis. It’s a green or brown insect that eats aphids, flies, grasshoppers, caterpillars and moths. The praying mantis is beneficial to farmers, and it’s a symbol of stillness and patience.


A zebra longwing butterfly on a purple flower

Image: www.floridastateparks.org

The beautiful zebra longwing butterfly belongs to the state of Florida. It has long black wings with thin stripes. It makes a creaking noise when it’s alarmed. They feed on nectar and pollen, and their life span is about six months.


Honeybees in a hive

Image: www.sciencenutshell.com

It’s the honeybee! Some of us might fear this insect, but bee pollination is crucial to plant and human survival. Honeybees live in hives of up to 80,000 individuals. Young worker bees are called house bees; they construct the hive and maintain the comb. Older workers are field bees where they gather nectar and search for pollen, water and plants.

New York

Nine-dotted red and black ladybug on a green leaf

Image: www.healthbarnusa.com

If you live in New York, your state’s insect is the amazing, nine-dotted ladybug. Ladybugs help gardeners and farmers by eating tiny insect pests that damage plants. They also eat harmful insects, such as scales, leafhoppers and mites. The nine-dotted ladybug continues to persist, but they have become very rare.


Firefly beetle lighting up on a green leaf

Image: www.thefeaturedcreature.com

The firefly beetle is Pennsylvania’s state insect. The firefly produces its light through a chemical reaction using special photic organs with very little heat given off as wasted energy. Both sexes use the flash patterns to attract members of the opposite sex.


Darner Dragonfly on a green leaf

Image: sites.google.com

The insect that belongs to this state is the green darner dragonfly. It is usually seen in the early spring through fall and it has a large body with silvery wings, compound eyes, a green thorax and a blue stripe down its back. Adult darner dragonflies catch and eat insects on the wing and they have powerful jaws that tear and chew up their prey.

Want to spot one of these creatures? Download your state’s Pocket Ranger® app to find a park nearest you. And don’t forget about your state’s mammal!

Suggested Gear List:

  • Binoculars
  • Backpacks
  • Camera
  • Insect Repellent

Check out our Pocket Ranger® Gear store for these items and much more!

Symbols and Facts in the Butterfly World

With 20,000 butterfly species in the world, the probability of seeing one is very likely; after all a female butterfly will lay around 100 eggs in her short lifespan. Butterflies come in a variety of colors and shapes, all sharing the characteristic of wings and scales. Though most of us are in awe when spotting a butterfly in all its colorful grandeur, we don’t always know butterfly facts. Does a butterfly hatch from a cocoon? How do you tell them apart from moths? And how did they get their wings? Often we are more familiar with their symbolic meaning, the idioms and cultural representations they carry. The combination of symbols and facts in the butterfly world makes sense, since its natural for humans to first perceive their world though symbolic meaning, and later understand it through facts.

Aporia crataegi (white-veined butterfly)

Aporia Crataegi  (white-veined butterfly) [Image: www.pinterest.com/pin/324470348127123286/]

The Butterfly Life

The stages of a butterfly follow this order: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. The adult stage is just one part of its life, lasting up to two weeks. They use this time for mating, laying eggs, and frolicking in the sun. Females mate once, while males mate several times. Their eggs are distributed in groups, or individually scattered among flowers. Usually butterflies hatch in the spring, but they can hatch any time in tropical climates. They are cold-blooded, prefering warmer temperatures, since they can’t regulate their own body heat.


Monarch Butterfly life cycle. Image: www.3.bp.blogspot.com/

Monarch Butterfly life cycle. Image: www.3.bp.blogspot.com/

Usually insects have two types of metamorphosis. It so happens, the butterfly has a complete metamorphosis, as do moths, beetles and flies. The young are called larva or caterpillar, and not nymphs as in the case of insects like grasshoppers, crickets, dragonflies, and cockroaches, who have an incomplete metamorphosis, and also don’t eat the same foods as the larva. What’s the job of a caterpillar? To eat all day, eventually growing 100 times its original size.

Surprisingly, adult butterflies don’t always feed. Sometimes they get energy from feeding on flower nectar, but some species abstain completely. It’s true, most butterflies don’t live that long — a life-span of about one month. There are some species that hibernate during winter, elongating their life to several months.

Spanish Moon Moth climbing a tree.

Spanish Moon Moth, one of the more colorful species. [Image: www.pinterest.com/pin/296815431662057912/]

How can you tell Moths from Butterflies?

Butterflies are related to moths, and share the same insect group, lepidoptera. A good way to tell moths and butterflies apart is by checking their hair, pupa stage, antennas, activity, and colors. Moths are not always colorful (gray or browns with some exceptions), usually have more hairs on their body, and are nocturnal. A moth makes their pupa out of silk turning it into a cocoon, whereas a butterfly creates a pupa without the silk, and this becomes a chrysalis.

What about their wings?

There’s something magical about butterfly wings. A butterfly’s wings are formed with layers of chitin, the protein found in the insect’s exoskeleton. The layers of chitin are almost transparent; above that thousands of tiny scales cover the layers, reflectling light in different colors. Sadly, as the butterfly ages, its scales wither away, making it transparent, and revealing the chitin layer. When emerging from their chrysalis, a butterfly must wait, and let its body dry and harden before making its initial flight, which usually takes hours.

Orange Tip Butterfly, found in the UK with wings formed with layers of chitin, the protein found in the insect's exoskeleton--one of our butterfly facts

Orange Tip Butterfly, found in the UK. [Image: www. thecol0rsofmyrainb0w.tumblr.com]

Which country has the most butterflies species?

That title goes to Peru, which has over 3,700 butterfly species, about 20% of the world’s species. Still, a large amount of Peruvian butterflies are still undocumented, and it’s estimated the total will climb to 4,200.

Symbolism, Poetry & Idioms

For different cultures, the butterfly has a significance. There are also idioms, and butterfly metaphors used in poetry.

Metamorphosis is a Greek word, meaning transformation or change in shape. As we know a butterfly makes a complete metamorphosis, and symbolically it means change, rebirth, revival, and lightness of being.

In Poem 15Pablo Neruda, uses the butterfly to convey a feeling of quiet longing for a lost love: “Dream butterfly, you resemble my soul / and you resemble the word melancholy.”

In Japanese culture, a butterfly is considered the personification of someone’s soul, either as living, dying, or already dead. A well-known superstition says that if a butterfly enters your guest room, and sits behind the bamboo screen, it means the person you love most will visit you. A large swath of butterflies is seen as a bad omen.

The popular idiom “butterflies in my stomach,”  means to feel nervous or anxious.

Clear-winged Cithaerias Pireta walking on ground-Unknown Butterfly Facts Article

Clear-winged Cithaerias Pireta found in the Peruvian rainforest [Image: www.flickr.com/photos/hawkperson/14083909886/]

Where did the word Butterfly originate?

There’s many ways to say butterfly. In french, its papillon; in spanish, mariposa, and in italian, farfalla, and the equivalent word in ancient Greek means soul or mind. All these words have an airy lightness to them. The word butterfly is said to be derived from the expression butter-coloured fly. In Old English, the word was butterfloegeI, and in Old Dutch and German, it was botervleig. They all translate to butter fly. The German name for butterfly is milchdieb, which means “milk-thief.” Amusingly, butterflies were once attracted to buttermilk.

Check out our Pocket Ranger® mobile apps to find a park with wildlife viewing.

Halloween Costumes: Nature and Fantasy

Halloween is a couple weeks away, but for anyone creating their costumes from scratch it means planning ahead, rummaging through closets, borrowing from friends, and going to thrift stores. After all what is Halloween without a treasure hunt to create your own version of classic characters. If you’re still scratching your head for ideas, here are some nature and fantasy-inspired Halloween costumes.

Artemis is the ancient Greek deity of the hunt, wilderness, and childbirth. She is also known to be close to women and children. In classic statues she is depicted as a huntress carrying a bow and arrows, along with a friend deer, a sacred animal, since it was her first capture. When channeling Artemis one needs to be ethereal, wise, caring, and close to nature. Her classic portrayal is simple.  You’ll need: a head piece, hair pins, simple makeup, light cream-colored or white dress, romanesque sandals, and a waist belt. Extras: a deer, lyre, and gold bracelets.

Image: www.museumsyndicate.com

Image: www.museumsyndicate.com

Gandalf is the most recognizable wizard from J. R. R. Tolkien’s novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. There are other wizards: Samuran, Radagast, and the Blue Wizards, but Gandalf is known for his wisdom, courage and beautiful language that inspires, so the wearer of this costume needs to possess these qualities. He also communicates with animals, some who save him from danger. For the basic Gandalf the Grey costume: Layer a cloak, robe, gray belt and a light satchel. And don’t forget to add the white hair and the white beard! Also a walking stick and the famous gray hat. Extra: mittens, a sword, pipe, and a gray scarf. Make your finger nails as dirty as you want them. This guy is hiking, horseback riding and killing orcs; he’s not suppose to be super clean.


Tomb Raider’ s Lara Croft of the reboot game is based on the origin stories. This newer version released last year features a realistic touch to the classic adventure gal. Unlike the previous version, Lara Croft’s outfit is wearable for all, and you can even add your own touches by adding less or more tears and blood to your clothes and skin. Play the archaeologist exploring the kingdom of Yamata (Japan) in a true survivalist outfit by wearing: a gray tank top, cargo pants, boots, plus arm and leg bandages.  Extras: bow and arrows, firearms, belt and gun holsters, archery glove, ax, among others.


Rick Deckard from the dystopian film, Blade Runner is a fun part to play; he’s always in motion, either chasing someone or being chased, yet has time to be reflective. Though the film is purely science fiction, it does deal with themes about human nature and morality. Rick Deckard is a veteran police officer hunting down replicants (androids), who escaped a space colony, and are illegally hiding on earth. Deckard is faced with a choice of whether or not to destroy a replicant who shows human empathy. Deckard wears: a trench coat, deckard-type shirt and tie, brown dockers, brown belt, black sneakers or shoes. Extras: pistol, holster and inside jacket.


Tauriel is a woodland Elf whose name means “daughter of Mirkwood.” She appeared in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug for the first time, which confused some fans since she didn’t originate from J.R.R. Tolkien’s world. That being said, it’s a wonderful creation that adds a much needed female character to the series. From what we know about her, she is adventurous, impulsive and rebellious. She doesn’t always follow the social order of the Elves or listen to her elders, but follows her young 600-year-old mind. Cosplaying as Tauriel requires time and determination! She has stark auburn hair with a braid design. She wears: a long green cloak over a green shirt, arm braces, brown boots, brown leggings, and carries a bow & arrow. Extras: Elf ears, leather bodice and two daggers.


When you’re ready to wear your nature-fantasy costume, check these haunted hikes and trick-o-treating events! For more information on Halloween festivities see the Events Calendar in the Pocket Ranger® app.

Animal Prints, Ranked

Nature produces beautiful works of art. From the awe-inspiring sunsets to the alien-like creatures that swim in our oceans, Mother Nature is the most original artist of them all. In fact, animal prints are so unique, they’ve made their way into mainstream fashion.

We’ve compiled a list of the top 15 animals prints in nature. We ranked the list based on natural beauty and how well the design has impacted the fashion world. Do you agree with our list?

15. Giraffe

animal prints

Image: www.upload.wikimedia.org

Giraffes are some of the most beautiful creatures on Earth, but when it comes to wearing the design, it’s usually a no-go. For some reason, giraffe design never caught on in the mainstream fashion world, which is odd because they resemble cow patterns, but a different color.

14. Deer

animal prints

Image: www.flickr.com/photos/daveward

Yeah, we know what you’re thinking: “But Bambi was so cute.” Well, just like all children, once they grow up, looks fade. Of course deer fur is cute, but doesn’t translate well into any other medium.

13. Alligator

animal prints

Image: www.images.1233.tw/alligator-skin

Anything is a sign of luxury when it’s worn for fashion, but these not so gentile giant lizards aren’t necessarily nature’s beauty queens. That’s not to say they’re leathery skin isn’t a sight for sore eyes.

12. White Tiger 

animal prints

Image: www.ecx.images-amazon.com

White tigers are one of the most beautiful animals of all time. Did you know that white tigers are not true albinos? They are just a pigmentation variety of the usual Bengal tiger coat.

11. Leopard                   

animal prints

Image: www.glogster.com

Lots of people mix up leopards and jaguars. Leopard animal prints are less complicated than jaguar animal prints. Jaguar’s fur design consists of larger, less round circles. Leopards sports are golden brown spots inside of black, circular spots.

10. Dalmatian

animal prints

Image: www.etsy.com

We all know one person who would rank Dalmatians number one on this list. Coming in at no. 10 is the most well-known dog print in the world. These precious pooches sure do boast an interesting design for canines.

9. Tiger

animal prints

Image: www.brinvy.biz

Tigers are the largest, and thanks to their orange fur with black stripes, the most recognizable of the cat species.

8. Cheetah

animal prints

Image: www.wallpho.com

Cheetah prints are more clean cut than the previous two animals. The spots are more pronounced and organized.

7. Panther

animal prints

Image: www.thefabricexchange.com

Black is always chic, yet classic. Enough said. 

6. Ladybug

animal prints

Image: www.hdtiger.mobi/ladybug-photos

Not to be outdone, an insect jumps in at no. 6. Ladybugs may be small, but their red and black print makes them one of the most recognizable insects in the world.

5. Cow             

animal prints

Image: www.i.jootix.com

Cows’ signature black blotches make for a sleek design both on clothing and in nature.

4. Peacock

animal prints

Image: www.michael–fitzsimmons.deviantart.com

EVERYONE loves peacocks. Fun Fact: Did you know only males are peacocks, while females are called peahens?

3. Jaguar

animal prints

Image: www.gde-fon.com

Jaguar print comes in at no. 3 on our animal prints list. That’s only because if it’s not worn subtly, it can be considered tacky. But, do you know who wears it perfectly? Jaguars!

2. Zebra

animal prints

Image: www.//th02.deviantart.net

Are zebras black with white stripes or white with black stripes. It was commonly believed they were white with black stripes because their underbellies were white, but now science suggest they are black because that’s their color at their last embryonic stage.

1. Snake

animal prints

Image: www.gallsource.com

Taking the top spot are nature’s slithering serpents. Why? Snake skin designs are the most versatile in the animal kingdom in that they come in all colors and patterns. Snake skin designs are also extremely popular in the fashion world. They have brilliant yellows, bright oranges and even black.


Halloween Camping Recipes

The season of autumn has arrived and Halloween is in a few weeks, which means fall camping season is here! What better way to spend Halloween than camping outdoors? Here are a few spooky Halloween camping recipes to have your family screaming for more!

Marshmallow Witches Recipe

Courtesy of Tasteofhome.com

Halloween camping recipes with three marshmallow witches on a red plate

Image: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/118993615124823337/

This recipe is perfect for the whole family to enjoy. It takes 30 minutes to assemble and you can have the kids join in to help you. This recipe serves 12.


  • ½ cup vanilla frosting
  • 36 miniature semisweet chocolate chips
  • 12 large marshmallows
  • 1 drop each of green, red and yellow food coloring (optional)
  • ¼ cup flaked coconut
  • 12 chocolate wafers
  • 12 miniature peanut butter cups
  • 12 milk chocolate kisses


  1. For the face of the witch, place a small amount of frosting on the bottom of the three chocolate chips, then press two for eyes and one for the nose onto the marshmallow.
  2. For hair, combine green food coloring and a drop of water in a small re-sealable plastic bag; add coconut and shake well. Spread a small amount of frosting on sides of marshmallows; press coconut hair into frosting. Then, place 3 tablespoons of frosting in a small heavy-duty, re-sealable plastic bag. Tint frosting orange by adding red and yellow food coloring. Set aside.
  3. For hats, spread some of the remaining frosting in the center of the chocolate wafers; press peanut butter cups upside down into frosting. Lightly spread bottoms of chocolate kisses with frosting and place on peanut butter cups. Cut a small hole in the corner of pastry or plastic bag and insert a small star tip. Fill the bag with frosting and make stars around the base of each peanut butter cup. To each witch, secure a hat to with a dab of frosting.

 Monster Claws

 Courtesy of Kraftrecipes.com

Chicken fingers monster claws on a plate with sauce

Image: www.kraftrecipes.com

Get a spook out of these crispy chicken fingers! Total cooking time is only 30 minutes and this recipe serves 4. (Recipe can be altered to serve more.)


  • 4 small boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut lengthwise in half
  • 1 packet of Shake ‘N Bake Extra Crispy Seasoned Coating mix
  • ¼ red pepper, cut into 8 triangular pieces
  • ½ cup barbeque sauce (or any sauce of your preference)


  1. Heat up your outdoor grill. (If you are in an RV, heat oven to 400ºF degrees.)
  2. Coat chicken with coating mix as directed on package. Place on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray.
  3. Cook for 13-15 minutes or until chicken is done.
  4. Make ½ inch slit in thinner end of chicken strip; insert red pepper triangle in slit for the monster’s claw.
  5. Serve with your choice of sauce.


Pizza Mummies

 Courtesy of Spoonful.com

Several pizza mummies on a platter

Image: www.aflexiblelife.com

Add this to your all-time “Favorite Halloween Camping Recipes” list because it only takes 10 minutes, and you can alter the ingredients to make how much is needed.


  • English muffins
  • Pizza sauce
  • Black Olives
  • Scallions
  • Red or green pepper
  • Cheese sticks or slices


  1. Heat up your grill. (If you are in an RV, heat oven to 350ºF degrees.) For each mummy, spread a tablespoon of pizza sauce onto half of an English muffin.
  2. Set olive slices in place for eyes and add round slices of green or red pepper for pupils.
  3. Lay strips of cheese across the muffin for the mummy’s wrappings.
  4. Bake or grill pizzas for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the muffin is toasted.
Campground decorated for Halloween with tombstones and spiderwebs

Image: halloweencamping.com

Download your state’s Pocket Ranger® app to choose a state park that offers camping. Use the app’s Events Calendar to see which state park near you is hosting a Halloween and trick-or-treating event for campers!