6 Fun Family-Friendly Camping Games

Posted by on Jul 9, 2019 in Blog | Comments Off on 6 Fun Family-Friendly Camping Games

6 Fun Family-Friendly Camping Games

Camping season is here, and while simply getting out into nature and enjoying the fresh air and break from everyday life may be the ultimate goal, fun activities to do along the way only add to the experience. And for those camping with kids, games and entertainment are crucial elements in a successful outing for all. Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of six unique things to do while camping that are perfect for all ages that you can take along for your next trip. And even better, unlike board games, these camping games don’t include small pieces that can get lost at your campsite during the excitement.

  1. Alphabet Hunt. This game is fairly simple and great for younger children that are learning their ABCs. Working together as a group, name an object that is either at your campsite or visible from your campsite that begins with each letter of the alphabet, working your way from A to Z. For example, a for ant, b for blanket, and so on.
  2. Squirt Gun Races. Be sure to pack the squirt guns for this one! To play, set up a line of empty plastic cups along the edge of a picnic table, which each team will then attempt to squirt the cups off of. There are many ways you can play this game, with one being to see who can knock the most cups off in a given amount of time, and another being a race to see who can clear the table of cups the fastest.
  3. Pass the Water. Like squirt gun races, this game is perfect for those hot, sunny days when you are looking for a way to cool off. Divide your crew into teams and have the teams stand in a line, one behind the other. Each person in the team gets a cup, with the person in the front receiving a cup full of water and everyone behind them getting empty cups. The first person then takes their cup of water, reaches it up and over their head, and pours it into the cup of the person behind them without turning around. If the last person in line has water in their cup, they then go to the front of the line and the process starts over. The last team with water wins.
  4. Catch or Don’t Catch. For this game, all you need is a ball of any size. Everyone stands in a circle except for one person who is in the middle with the ball. That player goes around the circle instructing others to “catch” or “don’t catch” and throwing the ball. If a player catches the ball when told not to, or the other way around, that player is out. This is a fast-paced game that is great for engaging all ages!
  5. Two Truths and a Lie. This one is a classic, with each player sharing three items of information about themselves – two of which are true, and one which is not. For example, “I know how to play the guitar, I’ve been to 42 states, and I can eat a whole bag of marshmallows in one sitting.” Each player then tries to guess which one is not true, and receives a point if they are correct. After each person has stated their ‘facts’, the person with the most points wins.
  6. Flashlight Tag. Keep the fun going once it gets dark! In this game, a person is chosen to be “it” and given a flashlight. They then attempt to “tag” another player with the light of the flashlight. This game is a great way to get out some energy before bedtime!

Take part in these fun camping games during your next visit to the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental! We offer camping sites nestled in the beautiful Nebraska Sandhills, call us today at (308) 546-2206 to make a reservation!

Fun Facts About Nebraska

Posted by on Jun 4, 2019 in Blog | Comments Off on Fun Facts About Nebraska

Fun Facts About Nebraska

Whether you make an annual family trip or are planning on visiting Nebraska for the very first time, you may not know some of the fascinating facts and history about our great state. For instance, did you know that Nebraska used to called the “Tree Planter’s State” before it was renamed the “Cornhusker State”? Read on to learn more about the beautiful Nebraska Sandhills and beyond!

Pioneers of Nebraska

There have been many inventions and discoveries made right here in Nebraska that have changed the lives of those all over the world, including:

  • The biggest mammoth fossils ever discovered were found in Lincoln County.
  • Charles Lindberg, the first person who flew nonstop across the Atlantic Ocean, learned to fly in Lincoln, NE.
  • The 911 emergency system was created and first used in Lincoln.
  • Kool-Aid was invented in 1927 by Edwin Perkins in Hastings, NE, and it has since become the official soft drink of Nebraska. Each year, Hastings celebrates the beverage during the second weekend of August with “Kool-Aid Days”, which contains festivities for all ages.
  • The strobe light was invented by Dr. Harold Edgerton of Aurora, NE.

The Great Outdoors of Nebraska

Our beautiful state is home to many extraordinary natural occurrences, such as:

  • The largest grass-covered sand dunes in the Western Hemisphere, which cover about ¼ of Nebraska. The only areas in the world that have bigger areas of sand are the Sahara and Arabian deserts.
  • The Niobrara River is one of the top canoeing rivers in the country and contains more than 90 waterfalls.
  • Nebraska has more underground water than any other state. This is due to the High Plains Aquifer being located beneath Nebraska, consisting of a layer of rocks and other materials that are filled with water.
  • Halsey National Forest, located near Thedford, NE, is the world’s largest hand-planted forest.
  • Four historical trails cross Nebraska: the Oregon Trail, the Lewis and Clark Trail, the Mormon Trail and the Pony Express.
  • European settlers dubbed Nebraska the “Great American Desert”, however, it is one of the top farming areas in the world.

Famous People from Nebraska

From sports stars to legends of the silver screen, Nebraska has been home to those known all around the world, including:

  • Fred Astaire, from Omaha, NE
  • Marlon Brando, from Omaha, NE
  • Puppeteer Bil Baird, from Grand Island, NE
  • James Coburn, from Laurel, NE
  • Gerald Ford, from Omaha, NE
  • The voice behind Kellogg Frosted Flakes for over 35 years, Thurl Ravenscroft, is from Norfolk.
  • Grover Cleveland Alexander, from Saint Paul, NE
  • Nick Nolte, from Omaha, NE

Wacky Facts

Like every other U.S. state, Nebraska has its share of unusual places, customs and laws, such as:

  • It’s illegal to go whale fishing in Nebraska. We hope that doesn’t change too many summer plans!
  • The Reuben sandwich was invented in Nebraska.
  • In Nebraska, it is illegal for a mother to perm her daughter’s hair without a state license.
  • Sneezing or burping during a church service is illegal in Omaha.
  • Chevyland USA, located near Elm Creek, NE, is the only museum in the world that is dedicated to a single line of cars.
  • Although Nebraska is nowhere near an ocean, there is a lighthouse located along the road in Ashland.
  • In Nebraska, it is illegal for owners of a bar to sell beer unless they are also simultaneously brewing soup.

Nebraska: Home to Big Things

As the 16th largest state in the U.S., Nebraska has plenty of room for some large endeavors, including:

  • The largest jewelry store in the nation, Borsheims, is located in Omaha.
  • The biggest collection of elephant skeletons in the world is housed at Elephant Hall in Lincoln.
  • Hastings is home to the largest U.S. ammunition plant, which produced about 40% of WWII’s ammunition.

We hope these fun Nebraska facts have inspired you for your summer vacation! While you’re here, enjoy the convenience of being centrally located to tons of outdoor recreation, entertainment, and Nebraska history by staying here at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental. We’re proud to be locally owned and located in Nebraska, and can’t wait to share with you the beauty of our state!


Things to Do and Places to Eat in Mullen, NE

Posted by on May 3, 2019 in Blog, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Things to Do and Places to Eat in Mullen, NE

Things to Do and Places to Eat in Mullen, NE

From practicing your drive at Mullen’s public golf course to savoring a mouthwatering meal at one of the local eateries, great fun and tasty food is never far during your stay at the Sandhills Motel! Take a look at some of the attractions and places to eat in Mullen, NE, and add them to your list of places to visit during your stay.

Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway

A trip to Nebraska isn’t complete without taking a cruise along the Sandhills Journey Byway, a 272-mile stretch that includes plenty of scenic views, historical stops, entertainment, outdoor recreation and much more along the way! Head over to the Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway’s website to learn more and to plan your adventure.

Hooker County Historical Museum

Learn about the rich history of the Mullen area with a tour of the Hooker County Historical Museum. Tours are offered by appointment, and are given by the Hooker County Historical Society, which was established in 1969. The museum offers three floors full of historical artifacts and stories of those that once inhabited this region. Give them a call at (308) 546-2453 to book your tour!

Chuckwagon ‘n Jug
Craving a big, juicy burger? If so, this is the stop to take! The Chuckwagon ‘n Jug, located at 201 South Lincoln Avenue in Mullen, grinds fresh beef daily to make burgers that people come back for again and again. Their hearty dishes and friendly atmosphere are sure to make for a meal to remember. Check out their Facebook to learn more about their menu and specials!

Mullen Golf Club

Located west of Mullen, the Mullen Golf Club is open seven days a week for public use. You’ll have the choice of playing 9 holes or 18 holes, all on greens that are in great condition. Get out and enjoy a day of golf during your Nebraska vacation! The Mullen Golf Club is located at West Highway 2, Mullen, Nebraska 69152, and can be reached at (308) 546-2445.

Hondo Lanes Bowling Alley

Start a little friendly competition with your group at Mullen’s Hondo Lanes Bowling Alley, located at 202 South Washington Avenue, Suite 2. A leisurely game will allow plenty of fun heading into the evening hours, and is a great way to round out a day out with the family. For more information, call Hondo Lanes at (308) 546-2417.

Mullen Disc Golf Course

If you haven’t yet tried disc golf, which has been gaining in popularity in recent years, give it a try during your vacation at Mullen’s own 7-hole disc golf course! The course is located at Mullen High School, which also contains basketball and tennis courts, as well as a nature trail. Learn more about disc golf, and then head over to 404 Blaine Avenue in Mullen to check it out for yourself!

Red’s Café and Bar

From a delicious breakfast in the morning to ice cold beers in the evening, Red’s, located at 404 SW 1st Street in Mullen, is the perfect stop to fill up and refresh in Mullen. Give one of their popular menu items, the chicken fried steak, a try! Call Red’s Café and Bar at (308) 546-2270 if you have questions about your visit.

Of course, a visit to the Sandhills Motel, especially during the warmer months, isn’t complete without taking part in a river adventure down the Middle Loup or Dismal River! We provide the kayak, canoe or tank, as well as the equipment you need, so you can relax and enjoy the fun.

Contact us today to book your next Nebraska adventure!

The Ins and Outs of Tanking

Posted by on Apr 5, 2019 in Blog | Comments Off on The Ins and Outs of Tanking

The Ins and Outs of Tanking

Warm, sunny days here in Nebraska beg to be spent floating lazily down the river, with something cold to drink close at hand and great company to share in the views, so it’s no wonder that tanking has become a regional activity that is loved by those of all ages. Not familiar with what “tanking” means? Well, we’re here to let you in on our state secret and get you hooked on the tanking life!

Rumor has it that tanking originated in the Sandhills area, when a bored farmer threw a couple of lawn chairs into a stock tank and went for an impromptu journey down the river. Today, the same common piece of ranching equipment is used in the activity, allowing three to six people to cruise down the river at a time. The tanks, which measure seven to nine feet across, are practically unsinkable, making a tanking trip perfect for those seeking a dry, relaxing ride.

Still not sold on the whole tanking idea? Tanks are spacious, so there are plenty of places to lounge, and they are easy to get in and out of. Some tanks are outfitted with picnic tables, allowing you to play a hand of cards or a board game, eat lunch… the possibilities are endless. With enough room to pack a cooler, you can also indulge in some ice cold beers while you chat with your crew. Tanking requires almost no need to paddle, and the tanks move relatively slowly, leaving you time to take photos and videos, and really enjoy the quality time with your friends and family.

Here at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental, we offer two options for stock tank trips: a two hour ride, or an excursion lasting five to six hours.  We also provide all of the tanking equipment you’ll need, including life jackets. All you’ll need to be sure to bring are some snacks, drinks, games and your nearest and dearest! We also offer kayak and canoe river adventures, giving you some fun options for your next Nebraska vacation.

Fans of tanking should also be sure to keep an eye out in early March, when the Polar Bear Tank Race is held. In this timed event, teams of four to six race down the Middle Loup River for the chance to win prizes. Teams are encouraged to be creative in choosing a team name and theme, as well as decorate their tank and themselves according to their chosen theme. This annual event grows each year, and proceeds go to benefit the Sandhills Scenic Journey Byway.

For fantastic kayaking, canoeing and tanking in Nebraska, turn to the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental and make your next vacation a memorable one. Call us today at (308) 546-2206 to book your adventure!

Funny and Unique Polar Bear Tank Race Theme Ideas

Posted by on Feb 21, 2019 in Blog | Comments Off on Funny and Unique Polar Bear Tank Race Theme Ideas

Funny and Unique Polar Bear Tank Race Theme Ideas

Are you dreaming of summer and warmer weather yet? Don’t worry, the change of seasons is on its way! We have found a way that you can beat those winter blues away, and that’s by joining us for the 12th Annual Polar Bear Tank Race. Put a team together and register today because space is limited for this fun race down the Middle Loup River to benefit the Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway.

As if this event wasn’t fun enough yet, teams can pick a theme to decorate the tanks with and race down the river. Have fun and let your imagination flow with this one.  If you just can’t think of anything and need some help picking out some ideas, here are some suggestions that you can use, or maybe they will spark some original ideas of your own!

  • Arrrguably the best theme yet – Make your tank into one of the fastest tanks to ever race the seven seas with this pirate theme. You and your shipmates can dress the part with eye patches, fake peg legs, and plastic swords. Make your tank the most feared by decorating it like a pirate ship with its own mast, sails, even a crow’s nest, and maybe a few cannons. Hoist the sails and get to sailing with this idea.


  • Do you feel lucky – Maybe the luck of the Irish is with you on this St. Patrick’s Day themed tank. Have fun with this one as you and your team dress up as leprechauns, with green top hats and red beards, or simply adorn yourself in your greenest attire. Or celebrate St. Patrick’s Day early as you float down the Middle Loup as a pot of gold, with your team dressed up as gold coins as you race to the rainbow at the finish line.


  • Summer Dreaming – Can’t wait for summer? Throw your very own beach party as you and your team don Hawaiian shirts, shorts, flip flops, and leis. Bring out the beach toys and set up the limbo bar, while you decorate the tank with tiki torches. Make the tank into a massive surf board and shred those waves, which is sure to score a perfect ten with the judges.


  • Hold’em at bay – What’s better than an old western tank straight out of your favorite western movie? Dress up as cowboys, complete with cowboys hats and holsters. Gather your team around a poker table and play a few hands as you float down the river, and make sure to show the other teams your poker faces as you pass them by.


  • Groovy man- You’re sure to turn heads as you float on by in this 60’s themed tank. Break out those tie dye shirts and groovy bell bottoms! Play the part as you let your long hear wig blow in the breeze, and don’t forget the cool sun-glasses. Decorate the tank with peace symbols and pieces of tie dyed fabric.


  • Duck hunt- Make that tank into the hunting blind, all decked out with a camo theme. Or drag the decoys behind you as you decorate the tank to resemble a large duck. Dress up in your hunting gear and make sure to wear your orange so we can see you!


  • You’ll win an Oscar- Choose any of your favorite funny movies with this film based theme tank. Dress the gang as Super Troopers, along with fake moustaches and ray bans. Perhaps your favorite movie is Animal House? Dress the team up from the iconic scene and get ready to have your own toga party as you float headlong down the river.

All decorations must be attached while you are racing down the river. Team members must all be 21 years of age or older, and all teams must have a minimum of four participants. Registration is $200 a person and includes:

  • One race tank per team
  • One life jacket, paddle, and Polar Bear Tank Race t-shirt for each participant
  • Two nights of accommodations (double occupancy) on March 1-2 in Thedford or Mullen
  • Welcome reception and soup cook-off
  • Breakfast before the race
  • Polar Bear Tank Race
  • Lunch following the Race
  • Polar Bear Tank Race Awards Banquet – prime rib dinner
  • Team trophies for the top 3 men’s and women’s teams

Register today and make plans to join us and beat those winter blues away! After you register, make sure to contact us for more information on staying at The Sandhills Motel, or you can give us a call at (308) 546-2206 to book your stay. We look forward to yet another action-packed Polar Bear Tank Race!

Join this year’s Annual Polar Bear Tank Race to benefit the Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway

Posted by on Feb 1, 2019 in Blog | Comments Off on Join this year’s Annual Polar Bear Tank Race to benefit the Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway

Join this year’s Annual Polar Bear Tank Race to benefit the Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway

It’s time to dust off that tank, break out those oars, and work on those paddling skills, because we have found the perfect solution to cabin fever! Come celebrate this year’s Polar Bear Tank Race and see if you are brave enough to battle the cold while taking on your opponents in some exciting tank racing. This is a timed event, as teams of 4-6 people race down the Middle Loup River north of Mullen, NE in metal stock tanks. If you just want to forgo the race and enjoy a relaxing float down the river, you can do that also.

Make sure to bring along decorations for your tank, because prizes will also be awarded for themes and tank decorations, so let that artistic side flow like Nebraska’s Middle Loup River.

Registration is on a first come, first serve basis and race capacity is limited, so please register as soon as possible. This year’s race will be held on March 2, 2019, with registration and a soup cook-off kicking off festivities on March 1, 2019.

Registration Information:

  • Must be 21 to enter
  • There is a non-refundable $200 registration fee per person
  • A minimum of four people are required for each tank racing team
  • When registering your team, please submit a team name. If a name is not submitted, the team name will be the last name of the team captain or registrant.

Registration Includes:

  • One racing tank per team
  • One life jacket, paddle, and Polar Bear Tank Race t-shirt for each participant
  • Two nights of accommodations (double occupancy) on March 1-2 in Thedford or Mullen
  • Welcome reception and soup cook-off
  • Breakfast before the race
  • Polar Bear Tank Race
  • Lunch following the race
  • Polar Bear Tank Race Awards Banquet – prime rib dinner
  • Team trophies for the top 3 men’s and women’s teams

Once your registration is received, you will be sent a complete informational packet that includes maps, lodging details and a complete schedule of events.

2019 Polar Bear Tank Race Agenda:

(All times – Mountain Time)

Friday, March 1st

  • 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Registration of Teams & Welcome Reception

Location: Mullen Event Center, fairgrounds west of Mullen on the north side of Highway 2.

You must attend the registration and the welcome reception in order to be a qualified racing team.

  • 5:00 p.m.

Soup Cook-Off

Various soups from Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway Communities will be available to sample.

Directly after the soup cook-off, there will be a drawing to determine race departure times.

Saturday, March 2nd

  • 8:00 a.m.

Meet in Mullen for Breakfast

Location: Mullen Event Center

After breakfast, transportation will be provided to the launch site on the Middle Loup River.

  • 9:00 a.m.

First Bus Leaves Mullen, Race Begins

The tanks will be launched in short intervals according to the draw order.

Transportation is conveniently provided for travel from the finish line back to the Mullen Event Center.

  • 5:00 p.m.

12th Annual Polar Bear Tank Race Awards Banquet

Location: Mullen Event Center

So, get the gang together, and make plans to attend the 12th Annual Polar Bear Tank Race, the ultimate cure to cabin fever!

Kick Start Your New Year’s Resolutions at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental

Posted by on Jan 8, 2019 in Blog | Comments Off on Kick Start Your New Year’s Resolutions at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental

Kick Start Your New Year’s Resolutions at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental

With the holidays behind us for another year, many are now focused on bettering themselves in 2019 and have made a New Year’s resolution list filled with personal goals. Everyone’s list varies a bit, but one thing that seems to unite us all is the fact that the list tends to be put on the backburner by the end of January. Despite our best intentions, life happens and adding more to your plate in the form of goals can leave you feeling overwhelmed.

However, working towards your goals doesn’t have to be a chore, and we’re here to let you in on how you can complete your resolutions right here at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental. Read on to learn how a visit can help you reach some of the more commonly made resolutions.

Try Something New

If you feel that your adventurous side could use some rekindling, a tanking adventure or a trip down the Dismal or Middle Loup Rivers in a kayak or canoe could very well be the answer.  Whether you’re after a wild ride through the waters or a relaxing trip floating down the river, we can help you find the river adventure that is perfect for you. And we make it easy for those new to canoeing and kayaking by providing all of the equipment needed, all of the highest quality and well-maintained.

Save Money

Did you break the bank trying to get everyone on your “nice” list exactly what they wanted, and now you have no idea how you’re going to afford a family vacation? Don’t fret! Staying at the Sandhills Motel is inexpensive, and you won’t blow your budget renting the equipment you need to provide a fun-filled vacation for your loved ones. Keep the money you saved and start a rainy day fund!

Get Closer to Nature

From our annual Grassland Dance to the wildlife that can be viewed during your river adventure, there are plenty of ways you can complete your resolution of embracing nature in 2019 right here at the Sandhills Motel. In addition to our motel rooms, we also offer tent camping sites that allow you to get a taste of living off the grid while still allowing you close proximity to the amenities you need to be comfortable.

Exercise More

What could be better than fitting in a workout that benefits your body while also being enjoyable? Paddling down the river in a kayak or canoe burns an astonishing 400 calories an hour and is a low-impact workout, ideal for those that need a way to exercise that is easy on joints.

For a vacation that suits your needs and helps you knock out your New Year’s resolutions, visit the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental! Contact us today to reserve your stay!

5 Benefits of Bird Watching

Posted by on Nov 27, 2018 in Blog | Comments Off on 5 Benefits of Bird Watching

5 Benefits of Bird Watching

If you consider yourself a bird watching aficionado, you may already know the many benefits of taking part in this pastime, which has been steadily increasing in popularity in recent years. But those that have just begun to take part in birding, or are interested in learning more about the hobby, may be surprised to learn that bird watching has quite a few physical, mental and social advantages. Here in the Nebraska Sandhills, we are lucky enough to witness the millions of birds that make their journey across the state each year, and are here to share with you five ways you can reap the benefits from joining in on this enriching activity.

  1. Get closer to nature. Not only can you observe birds in their natural habitats, but you can also breathe in the fresh air, soak up the sun’s rays, and appreciate all of the things that make being outdoors so great.
  2. Improve cardiovascular health. Many may be shocked to learn that birding can count as a workout. But often, locations that offer the best opportunities for bird watching are located off of the beaten path and require a bit of a hike in order to reach. Getting your blood pumping with a moderately-paced walk is a great way to keep your heart healthy, and by taking part in an activity you enjoy, you won’t even notice you’re getting in a workout.
  3. Hone patience skills. The payoff of bird watching isn’t always immediate, and usually requires time spent waiting for the much anticipated glimpse of the birds you’re seeking. Refining your patience skills isn’t only a practice that will improve your mental well-being, but also has physical health benefits. A 2007 study found that people that are more patient are less likely to experience headaches, ulcers, pneumonia, acne and other health problems.
  4. Obtain quicker reflexes. After a lengthy wait, a bird watcher has to be ready at any given second to grab their binoculars or camera to bask in and capture that long-awaited moment. Every birding opportunity gives you the chance to exercise your reflex speed, as well as improve upon it. Having fast reflexes not only allows you to be a successful bird watcher, but will prevent a barrage of small disasters from happening in your day-to-day life and help you better thwart off danger.
  5. Become part of a community. Many bird watching trips take place with groups of people, and the act of coming together in this common interest can do wonders in building life-long friendships and fostering a sense of community. There are also many online groups where members can swap birding tips and share their experiences, allowing bird watchers all over the world to connect with one another.

If you’re ready to experience all of the ways that bird watching can enhance your life, book a viewing at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental. We are centrally located to some of the best Nebraska Sandhills birding locations, and offer comfortable accommodations for your stay.

Tips for Fall Camping Comfort

Posted by on Oct 31, 2018 in Blog | Comments Off on Tips for Fall Camping Comfort

Tips for Fall Camping Comfort

There are many reasons why camping during the fall months can be just as, if not more, appealing than any other season. The weather tends to be more mild than summer, the colorful fall foliage enhances your surroundings, and it’s the opportunity for one last “hurrah” before the frigidly cold temperatures of winter set in. But there are also aspects to fall camping that can set you at a disadvantage, such as the short days and freezing nights. Continue reading to learn some camping tips that will help ensure you are able to have an awesome autumn adventure in comfort.

Before You Go

Adequately preparing for a camping trip, no matter the time of year, is critical. Use the following tips as a checklist to make sure you have all the fall essentials you need before you head out:

  • Pack a cold weather sleeping bag. Even though daytime temperatures may still be well into the 50’s and 60’s, it is likely to dip down into freezing temps once the sun goes down. Having a sleeping bag labeled for use in weather between 0°-30° will help you get a good night’s sleep despite the cold.
  • Invest in sleeping pads. In addition to your cold weather sleeping bag, a sleeping pad will help keep you nice and cozy throughout the night by keeping you off of the cold ground.
  • Bring clothes you can layer. With fall’s often-changing temperatures, packing a variety of clothing is a good idea so you can adapt to the current conditions. Pants, shorts, short- and long-sleeved shirts, tank tops and sweaters are all good choices to pack for your fall camping trip.
  • Load up on firewood. One of the best ways to keep warm during the chilly autumn evenings is by cuddling up next to a campfire. Make sure you bring plenty of firewood to ensure you can keep the fire going until you’re ready to head to bed.
  • Keep an eye on the weather. Monitor the forecast in the days leading up to your trip. Although colder weather is to be expected, if there is a significant amount of snow or extremely cold weather in the forecast, you may want to put a halt on your expedition.

When You Get to the Campsite

Although you may be ready to unload your vehicle and get to the fun, there are some important steps you should take once you arrive at the campground:

  • Choose a campsite upwind from neighbors. Like you, everyone else at the campground will be utilizing a campfire to stay cozy, so staying upwind will keep you from inhaling their fire’s smoke all night.
  • Pick a sunny spot. Make the most use out of daylight by choosing a campsite that receives sunlight throughout the day.
  • Set up early. With the sun going down earlier and earlier each day, it’s a good idea to begin setting up your tent and other supplies well before sunset.

During Your Stay

Follow the tips below to stay comfy throughout your fall camping trip:

  • Stay active. It’s no secret that movement helps keep the body warm, and camping provides plenty of opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors, such as hiking, biking, fishing, or even just playing charades with your group.
  • Drink hot beverages. Fall is the season for hot chocolate and apple cider, and sipping on these drinks are great for keeping you warm from the inside out.
  • Keep the next day’s clothes in your tent. By stowing the clothes you plan on wearing the next day, you’ll allow them to retain some of your warmth so they aren’t so cold when you first put them on.
  • Sleep with a full water bottle. No, this isn’t to make sure you have refreshment in the middle of the night. Lying with a water bottle filled with warm water (and, of course, tightly sealed) will assist in keeping you snug through the night.
  • Use the bathroom before bed. Although this is a good tip for camping in any season, you will feel the least like getting out of your warm tent to use the bathroom during the cold autumn nights.

At the Sandhills Motel & Glidden Canoe Rental, we’re open all year long and are the perfect destination for a fall camping escapade. Call us at (308) 546-2206 or (888) 278-6167 to reserve your camping spot today!

Tips for an Eco-Friendly Camping Trip

Posted by on Oct 1, 2018 in Blog | Comments Off on Tips for an Eco-Friendly Camping Trip

Tips for an Eco-Friendly Camping Trip

Going on a camping trip is the perfect way to get away from the stresses of everyday life and get closer to nature. However, there are some common camping practices, such as the utilization of single-use products and disposable water bottles, which can be detrimental to the earth.  Read our camping tips to learn how you can be more eco-friendly during your next outdoor voyage.

  • Skip single serve snacks. Although they can be a convenient way to get some nourishment during your trip, they result in a lot of waste, and can even take up more space than snacks that are prepared at home and stored in reusable containers. Sliced fruits and veggies, nuts and jerky all make great camping snacks and can easily be transported without the use of disposable packaging.
  • Invest in durable, reusable water bottles and jugs. Instead of hauling in multiple packs of expensive, single use bottled water, bring along a refillable water jug, such as this Ozark six gallon model, and heavy duty BPA-free water bottles.
  • Just say “no” to plastic utensils and paper plates. Disposable plates and cutlery create needless waste and are really not more efficient than their reusable counterparts. A set of long-lasting dishes is fairly inexpensive and also take up relatively little space.
  • Use biodegradable hygiene products. Many sunscreens, lotions, soaps, makeup and toothpastes contain ingredients that can pollute water, and some insect repellents contain permethrin, which is harmful to aquatic life. It takes only a moment while you are packing to ensure that your items are eco-friendly. Be sure to keep in mind to use all products at least 200 feet from any water source to avoid contaminating lakes and streams.
  • Use the sun to recharge. Solar powered lanterns and chargers not only take up less space than clunky battery-operated options, but they are an easy way to reduce your carbon footprint.
  • Be wise about fire safety. Before you head to your campground, check the area’s fire restrictions to ensure you don’t start a blaze in a restricted zone. Don’t throw anything in the fire besides kindling, and make sure the fire is completely extinguished before you head to bed or leave your campsite.
  • Stay on designated trails. To assist in preserving nature areas for future generations, make sure to stick to marked trails during your adventure. Not doing so can result in soil erosion and damage to resources that can forever change the region’s landscape.
  • Make cleaning fun. It’s everyone’s job to help keep trash in its place, and you can make it easier to convince little ones to join in on picking up trash throughout the campground by turning it into a game. Bring along fun prizes like stickers, coloring books and candy to give to the person that gathers the most litter.
  • Practice “Leave No Trace”. Be sure to leave your campsite in the same condition, or even better, than you found it. After you pack up, there should be no evidence that you were even there.

Those are just some of the ways that you can reduce your impact on the earth while enjoying some time in the great outdoors. Stay with us at the Sandhills Motel and Glidden Canoe Rental for your next adventure for camping fun while surrounded by some of Nebraska’s top scenic destinations.