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The Top 8 Attractions in Pennsylvania

8 Best Destinations and Attractions in Pennsylvania 

The Keystone State is nicknamed for its key importance in establishing the United States of America. With both centuries of rich American history and densely populated modern cultural hubs, PA has become a popular place for tourists to visit. As a proud Pennsylvania RV dealership, we’ll always encourage travelers to check out destinations from the origins of the Declaration of Independence to thrilling amusement parks. To get you started on your PA road trip, here’s our list of the best tourist destinations and attractions in Pennsylvania.

Independence National Park

Philadelphia’s Independence National Park is home to Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was signed, and home of the Liberty Bell. Therefore, it’s an obvious first addition to our list. Whether you’re an American history buff or not, this beautiful and iconic landmark is a must-visit destination.

The east entrance steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Photo couresty of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Art enthusiasts and movie lovers alike will want to make a stop at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. This attraction in Pennsylvania houses work from both American and European artists. The European collection includes work by Rembrandt, Monet, Picasso, Matisse, Chagall and more. Additionally, there are exhibits featuring textiles and fashion, colonial American styles, and a sculpture garden.

And, of course, this museum is home of the famous Rocky steps – the steps that protagonist Rocky Balboa, portrayed by Sylvester Stallone, is seen running up in the “Rocky” movies. Thousands of visitors recreate the iconic movie scene on these steps every year! 

Hersheypark

Theme parks aren’t just for Florida – this amusement park in Hershey, PA, will give Disney World a run for its money! It was initially built in 1906 as a place for Hershey Chocolate Company employees to have fun. It’s since become the top amusement park in the state and one of the most popular attractions in Pennsylvania. Thrill-seekers and young children alike will find something to enjoy with everything from huge roller coasters to aquatic shows, ZooAmerica and Chocolate World.

Eastern State Penitentiary

This eerie, intimidating building looks more like a medieval castle than a 19th century prison. The Eastern State Penitentiary is a top attraction in Pennsylvania for history fanatics and ghost hunters alike. Its daytime tours include visits to the cells that once belonged to infamous criminals like “Slick Willie” Sutton and “Scarface” Al Capone. Aside from searching out the spirits of prisoners, the nighttime tours include beer tastings, trivia and other themed activities that change throughout the year.

Gettysburg National Military Park

This national park is the site of the 1863 Battle of Gettysburg during the Civil War. This three-day battle resulted in the death of roughly 51,000 people. It was a significant Union Army victory that became a turning point in the tides of the Civil War. Now, you can walk the grounds where this tragic battle occurred. The Park Museum features a wide collection of Civil War uniforms, weapons and more. You can join living history programs, watch historic reenactments and even take a scenic horseback ride at this popular park.

Strasburg

No list of the best attractions in Pennsylvania is complete without a visit to Amish country. Strasburg is a small town in Lancaster and is home to the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania. In keeping with the railroad theme of the town, you can also find the National Toy Train Museum. We recommend a ride on the Strasburg Rail Road – where you can journey along the historic tracks through scenic Amish towns and farms.

Sunrise at the Pennsylvania Monument in Gettysburg National Military Park.

Carnegie Museum of Natural History

A well-known natural history museum, the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh is one of the top museum attractions in Pennsylvania. It’s particularly well-known for its dinosaur and paleontology exhibits that would impress even the likes of Ellie Sattler and Alan Grant (before their time at Jurassic Park, perhaps). The dino exhibits include everything from one of the first T-rex skeletons ever excavated to the sea creatures that dominated our oceans millions of years ago. Take a walk back in time at this iconic museum!

Valley Forge

The Valley Forge National Historical Park is another place PA-touring history buffs need to make a stop. It’s a key location from the American Revolutionary War and is now a place to honor the sacrifices made to gain American independence. In the winter of 1777 to 1778, George Washington and his troops camped out at Valley Forge. The 3,500-acre park includes monuments, open land and forests, and a museum in the visitor center. It’s another prime example of the rich American history that Pennsylvania has to offer.

Classic movie fanatics, model train enthusiasts and everyone in between will want to visit the state for one of these famous attractions in Pennsylvania. And, of course, the best way to travel to and stay at these destinations is in an RV! National parks and museums across the state have both primitive and full-hookup campgrounds ready for your family’s stay. Visit Juniata Valley RV in Mifflintown, PA, for an RV that’s ready to take you on a tour of the Keystone State.

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Tiny Camper Manufacturers at Juniata Valley RV

Compact campers have exploded onto the RV scene in recent years. Tiny campers are just what they sound like – short, lightweight, small campers. They’re easy to tow and can be towed by most vehicles thanks to their weight. Additionally, they’re easy to store in your garage and provide more campsite options thanks to their modest size. A-frame or teardrop, outdoor-loving couples and small families have fallen for compact camping in every style. And these tiny camper manufacturers are happy to oblige.

 

About Our Tiny Camper Manufacturers

An Aliner parked and leveled at sunset.

Image courtesy of Aliner.

Aliner

The well-known Aliner is one of the top tiny camper manufacturers, and their Expedition is one of the most popular models at Juniata Valley RV. Aliner makes hard-sided, fold-down campers with an A-frame. They’re produced by Columbia Northwest, Inc. The first A-frame by Aliner was made in the early 1970s by Ralph Tait in Bend, Oregon. He and his sons owned and ran the business until 2007, when it was sold to Columbia Northwest, Inc.

You can shop Aliner campers for sale in Pennsylvania at Juniata Valley RV! We’re one of Aliner’s major dealers and we’ve sold hundreds of Aliner Classic, Expedition, Scout and Ranger models over the years. You won’t want to miss out on our Aliner inventory!

Gulf Stream

Whether you’re after a motorhome or a towable RV, Gulf Stream probably makes a unit that will work for you. The Shea family established Gulf Stream Coach in 1983, and they’ve been producing top-quality motorhomes and trailers ever since. They’re still family owned and operated today. Gulf Stream makes 22 brands and over 140 RV models.

Ameri-Lite is Gulf Stream’s tiny camper model. There are more than 20 Ameri-Lite floorplans to choose from, and their Super Lite models never reach more than 3,700 lbs. With many different weights, models and prices to choose from, there’s an Ameri-Lite for families of every shape and size. Check out the Gulf Stream RVs for sale at our dealership!

CrossRoads

The CrossRoads Zinger is a compact camper model that we love. CrossRoads is a popular RV brand; they make fifth wheels, travel trailers and destination campers. Juniata Valley RV carries the CrossRoads Zinger and Zinger Lite, which puts them on the list of tiny camper manufacturers. Since 1996, CrossRoads has built dependable, affordable RVs.

Their compact camper model, the Zinger, is known for its ability to maximize both storage space and comfort in every floorplan. They’re all made with the addition of small luxuries like heated and enclosed underbellies and black tank flush. You can shop CrossRoads RVs for sale at Juniata Valley RV!

A Zinger Lite by CrossRoads, one of our tiny camper manufacturers, on the lot at our dealership.

Heartland

Though Heartland makes fifth wheels, toy haulers and traditional travel trailers, they didn’t fall short with their North Trail tiny camper line. These Ultra-Lite campers still manage to take advantage of the available space with their open concept floorplans and large windows.

Heartland was founded about 20 years ago when a group of experienced RV professionals joined together to develop an RV that met the needs they’d seen in the industry. In 2007, they introduced the lightweight North Trail and joined the growing list of tiny camper manufacturers. The North Trail met the needs of campers in a struggling economy with rising gas prices, and has brought countless families camping ever since. You can find Heartland RVs for sale here at Juniata Valley RV.

A nuCamp teardrop camper parked with lawn chairs outside.

Image courtesy of nuCamp. 

nuCamp

This is one of the most popular tiny camper manufacturers – they specialize in compact campers! We carry both their TAG and TAB teardrop trailers. The nuCamp brand is a household name on the tiny camper manufacturers scene. They began making their small campers in 2004, before the compact camping trend really took off.

These innovative trailers were at the forefront of tiny campers, and they’ve managed to be one of the most popular teardrop trailer manufacturers over the past two decades. At under 3,000 lbs., these campers are perfect for outdoorsy couples with compact SUVs. You can shop nuCamp on our website today.

Winnebago

The name Winnebago is likely the most recognizable in the RV industry, and with good reason. Since the early 1960s Winnebago has been a leading manufacturer of trailers and motorhomes. They’ve spent decades encouraging outdoor adventure travel and providing a home on the road for couples and families alike. Winnebago has been one of the biggest tiny camper manufacturers for decades.

Hike and Micro Minnie by Winnebago are two tiny camper models we always like to have in stock at our Pennsylvania RV dealership. The level of craftsmanship and camper diversity can’t be beat. See our full inventory of Winnebago RVs for sale, tiny campers to motorhomes, on our website. 

The popularity of tiny campers in the past few years has shown just how convenient and effective these RVs can be. Couples and small families who want to focus on time spent outdoors, but don’t want to sacrifice sleeping in the air conditioning, have fallen in love with compact camping. These tiny camper manufacturers are all available at Juniata Valley RV! You can browse our tiny campers inventory online or stop in for a tour today.

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How to Prevent RV Slide Out Problems

Owning an RV can be plenty of fun, but it can also be a huge responsibility. The price tag that comes along with RV issues is often quite hefty. When your unit malfunctions, it can be difficult to spot what’s wrong without the help of a professional. The best way to avoid the headaches that come along with owning an RV is to focus on preventing issues before they occur.

RV slide out problems are one of the most common mechanical malfunctions in RVs. When your RV doesn’t slide out, there isn’t much you can do to save your camping trip. Although problematic, RV slides are almost always necessary. Without their ability to create extra width inside your camper, your vacations would be pretty cramped. RV slide out problems are common, so we gathered some info on how they happen and what you can do to prevent them.

Assess and Prevent RV Slide Out Problems

How RV Slide Outs Work

RV slide outs have become an industry standard for almost every type of unit — motorized and towable. Since the late 90’s, almost every RV has included at least one slide to increase the livable space on the inside of your camper. There are different types of RV slide outs, but most use electric motors or hydraulics to operate.

Electric RV slide outs use a rack and pinion, or pulley and cable, system powered by an electric motor. The motor spins a shaft or pinion which moves the slide in one direction, and adding a gear allows it to slide in the opposite direction. The electric motor uses a 12-volt DC power, which runs directly off the main house battery.  This makes them usable when you’re not plugged into a power source at the campground.

RV slide out extended on a travel trailer parked in the woods.

Though less common, some RV slide outs use pull and cable systems. Others use the well-known Schwintek slides. Finally, though very rare, a few units are equipped with the power gear slide out system. The rack and pinion, however, is by far the most common slide out system, so that’s what we’re focusing on today.

Common Problems

The top five reasons for a slide out malfunction are lubrication issues, motor burnout, power issues, foreign objects and leaks. Some are easily treatable on your own, but others will need professional attention from RV service technicians.

Lubrication Issues

Likely the most common slide out problem, a lack of proper lubrication results in your RV slide having issues smoothly moving in and out. This is often an easy fix with a lubricating product like WD-40’s RVcare line, which we’ll discuss later. Be careful not to force a slide that needs lubrication as you can damage the rail system and make the situation much worse.

Motor Burnout & Power Issues

Another common culprit, motor burnout occurs when the motor that moved the slide in and out stops functioning. Somewhat similarly, power issues occur when your slide out can’t pull power from your RV, or your RV isn’t properly connected to a power source. This isn’t as easy to fix on your own, so you’re better off scheduling an RV service appointment for professional help.

Other Issues

Finally, leaks and foreign objects will prevent your RV slide out from functioning properly. Anything blocking the slides or interfering with their movement can cause slide out issues. It’s best to assess the situation and then decide if you need to call a professional. If you aren’t confident that you can repair the leak or remove the object, it’s probably best to find an RV technician. You may end up making the issue worse, which will only drive up the cost of a fix.

Manual RV Slide Out Overrides

If you’re stranded at a campground with a stuck RV slide out, consider manually moving the slide in or out. Your RV should come with an owner’s manual, which has more unit-specific instructions on manually moving a slide out.

Start by finding the slide out motor, often below the slide out room. Remove the brake assembly from the motor by unscrewing it. Find the crank extension and attach it to the crank handle that comes with the trailer. If you don’t have the crank handle. Use a wrench or socket and ratchet. Turn the crank extension by hand to manually move the RV slide out in or out.

After you’ve moved the RV slide out to the desired position, be sure to reattach the brake assembly to the slide out motor. Replace and tighten the screws to prevent the slide out from moving.

Slide Out Problem Prevention

Anything that can be fixed with WD-40 and a Craftsman wrench is approved by Toby Keith, RV parts included. Luckily for RVers, WD-40 has our backs with their 3-in-1 RVcare product line. WD-40’s RVcare Slide-Out Silicone Lube is perfect for preventing, and sometimes treating, slide out problems.

Simply spray the trusted brand of lubricant on the tracks and your slide out will be moving smoothly. WD-40 RVcare also makes Window and Track Dry Lube, which helps prevent messes and works well on RV window tracks, or other interior slides. Both products are a great way to lubricate your RV after long, stationary months in winter storage.

RV slide outs move with simple rack and pinion technology. Overall, troubleshooting and preventing RV slide out problems doesn’t have to be complicated. Follow our advice to keep your unit functioning well and save yourself a few headaches and canceled vacations. If you have no choice, manually moving your RV slide out is an option, though difficult.

If you continue to have RV slide out problems, bring your unit by Juniata Valley RV. Our friendly and experienced service staff can assess the issue and make the repairs that get you back on the road as soon as possible. If you’re ready to make a change, our sales staff would be happy to help you find a new or used RV ready to leave the lot today. Stop by our Mifflintown, Pennsylvania, location, contact us online or give us a call today if you have any questions about our RV sales or service.

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Breathtaking Outdoor Destinations in Pennsylvania

Top Scenic Outdoor Destinations in Pennsylvania

The Keystone State spans the Mid-Atlantic to Appalachian regions of the United States. Nestled between Lake Erie and the Appalachian Mountains, Pennsylvania has hundreds of beautifully breathtaking views. Our favorite outdoor destinations lean toward the natural world, although there are plenty of sparkling manmade views to be seen from the buildings of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

East to west, we gathered our list of the best outdoor destinations in the state. Whether you’re planning to camp in one of the state parks or passing by an overlook on a road trip, views can’t be missed.

Hawn’s Overlook

Hawn’s Overlook at the Raystown Dam has a magnificent view of Raystown Lake. It’s located in the Alleghenies region and was featured on the cover of the 1996 Pennsylvania Visitors Guide! You can reach the overlook is a short hike from the nearby Ridenour Overlook. Hawn’s Overlook is best to visit at sunset. It faces west, providing a view of a beautiful, golden sun setting over the lake.

The view from High Knob Overlook, one of Pennsylvania's most scenic outdoor destinations.

Image Courtesy of Interesting Pennsylvania

High Knob Overlook

The High Knob Overlook is easily the best view from one of Pennsylvania’s top outdoor destinations, Loyalsock State Forest. The overlook has a beautiful view of the state forest in northeastern Pennsylvania. You can get to High Knob Overlook by hiking the Loyalsock Trail, or drive up the road and park a few steps from the overlook. You can read about camping at Loyalsock State Forest in this PDF.

Big Mountain Overlook

One of the most expansive views, this outdoor destination lets you see hundreds of miles into the distance. This breathtaking mountain vista is located in the Buchanan State Forest. At the overlook, you can see the valley and surrounding mountain ranges of Franklin County. While there are tons of hiking trails in the Buchanan State Forest, you can also drive up to the overlook via Tower Road. There are plenty of camping opportunities in the Buchanan State Forest, read about camping opportunities and fill out an application on the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources website.

Boone Run Vista

In the Susquehannock State Forest, the Boone Run Vista has a beautiful, open view of the mountains. It overlooks Potter County in eastern Pennsylvania. Only a small sign and a simple wooden bench sits at this overlook, on the side of a narrow dirt road, but with a view this beautiful you don’t need much else. Boon Run Vista is only a few minutes from Cherry Springs State Park, which is known for stargazing opportunities.

Leonard Harrison State Park Overlook

Although the park is known for hiking, this overlook provides a great outdoor destination goal at the end of your hike. This vista is easily accessible for everyone, just a few steps behind the park’s main building. The overlook has a western view of the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon. There are even a few viewfinders at the outlook for those wanting a closer look!

Lebo Vista

If you want another view of the PA Grand Canyon, Lebo Vista is a great outdoor destination to visit. It’s easy to reach for everyone; it sits along a bend at the end of the drivable portion of Lebo Vista Road. It has scenic sights of Lycoming and Tioga Counties. If you look to the east, you can see Pine Creek and Cammal about 1,300 feet below!

Chickies Rock

The Susquehanna River in Lancaster County is a unique sight when looking from Chickies Rock. Just north of Columbia, this outcropping of quartzite rock sits about 100 feet above the water. It offers views of York County, Marietta and Lancaster County. Chickies Rock is also a bit of a historic sight. It once was home of several iron furnaces, rolling mills, a canal and an old trolley line. Remnants of these old structures can still be seen from the outlook.

The view from one of PA's best outdoor destinations. The fall view from Chickies Rock.

Image Courtesy of Uncovering PA

Greenwood Access

We had to shoutout or hometown of Juniata County! Greenwood Access has a great view of the Juniata River, for which our county is named. This river is a tributary of the legendary Susquehanna River. This outdoor destination is located at the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission’s Greenwood Access near Thompsontown. Most Juniata River natives will tell you the best time to come is late spring through October, when the fall foliage is at its peak.

Appalachian Mountains to the Susquehanna River, these breathtaking scenic views are the best outdoor destinations in the state. These are just a few travel destinations in Pennsylvania. The state has hundreds more places to visit and campgrounds to stay at. Juniata Valley RV is here to help you get there.

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The Basics: RV Winterization at Home

How to Winterize Your RV at Home

Before you park your RV in winter storage, be sure to prep it with proper RV winterization. Prevent any damage in the freezing temperatures over the next few months, and protect it from cold critters looking for a warm place to hide. RV winterization will ensure that when the snow melts and the sun stays past 5 p.m. there won’t be any damages or furry surprises waiting for you.

What You Need to Winterize Your RV

There are a few basic tools and materials you need to winterize your RV. Luckily, we have most of these available in our parts store! You can stop by Juniata Valley RV to browse our parts store. If we don’t have what you need in stock, we can order it for you! Browse our full parts catalog online and let us know if you’d like to place an order.

Hammer, pliers and other tools for RV winterization.
  • RV Antifreeze – Three to four gallons should be more than enough. But the amount you’ll actually use depends on the layout and length of your plumbing lines.
  • Water Heater Bypass Kit – If your RV isn’t already equipped with one.
  • Siphoning Kit – If the pump is not already equipped.
  • Cleaning Wand – To scrub your holding tanks until they’re squaky clean!
  • Basic Hand Tools – Some tools you’ll probably need include: power drill, crescent wrenches, needle nose pliers and a screwdriver. You also may need a flashlight!
  • Anode Rod – A plastic plug might also work.
  • Moth Balls & Mouse Traps – They’ll keep critters and creepy crawlies under control over the winter. Who can blame them for wanting a warm place to sleep?

Winterize Your RV Water Systems

Flush the Water Tanks

The first thing you’ll need to do to winterize your RV is drain and flush the black and gray water tanks. You never want to leave wastewater in your water tanks over the winter. They’re a breeding ground for bacteria, and freezing water can damage tanks and pipes over the winter. Once they’re emptied of water, we recommend using a black tank cleaner to ensure your black tank is completely cleaned out and ready for winter storage.

Flush the Water Heater

All the water needs to be emptied for proper RV winterization. This includes your water heater! Start by turning off the water heater and allowing it some time to cool down. Then, hook your RV up to city water. Use a wrench to remove the anode rod and open the pressure relief valve so the water can drain out. After it’s drained, flush the heater out for a few minutes until any sediment has been removed. Leave the anode rod out during the winter, but be sure to replace it in the spring.

Bypass the Water Heater

Make sure to bypass the water heater before adding antifreeze to your RV. You want to make sure there’s no chance of antifreeze making it into your water heater. Some RVs will have a bypass already installed. If not, you can start the bypass by removing the water heater service door. Then, remove the access panel to get to the valves inside. Adjust these valves to manually bypass the water heater.

Winterize Your RV Exterior

Prep the Water Pump

Locate the water pump and attach the siphoning kit. Then, place the siphoning hose in the antifreeze. Open the valve and turn on the water pump to allow the antifreeze to flow through the water system.

A line of motorhomes parked in the snow.

Open All External Faucets and Valves

You want to drain all the water from your RV before the freezing temperatures set in. Start by opening the lowest valve and work your way up, allowing the water to run out. Do this until you see the water change color, notifying you that the antifreeze has made it all the way through. Then, close and tighten the valve. Make sure to do the same with any external showers and faucets.

Winterize Your RV Interior

Flush Internal Faucets

RV winterization needs to be completed inside and out. Once you have put antifreeze in the water pump, open all interior faucets, showers and toilets. Let them run until the water changes color, signaling that the antifreeze has made it all the way through. Once you see antifreeze, you’re good to turn off the water for the winter.

Two RVs in storage. In need of RV winterization.

Pour Antifreeze Down the Drains

Pour antifreeze down any interior drains to ensure they’re prepared to withstand freezing winter temperatures. Pour antifreeze down sink drains, shower drains and toilets.

Remove All Items from the Interior

The last step of RV winterization, at least the last step we’re covering today, is emptying the interior of any items that won’t last the winter. Remove all food, clothes and other important items from your RV before leaving it for the winter. Leave your refrigerator, cabinets and any other doors open to keep air flowing and preventing mold or smells from building up over the next few months.

Once you’ve taken these steps, the RV winterization basics are done! You’re ready to place your RV in its winter storage spot and rest easy for the holiday season. You know your RV is ready and waiting for another fun-filled camping season when the snow finally melts again.

If you’re interested in hiring an expert team to perform RV winterization for you, look no further than Juniata Valley RV! Our service team has winterized hundreds of RVs, and we’re happy to add yours to the list.

Need RV winterization service?

Let our RV service technicians handle the heavy lifting when it comes time to winterize your RV! Contact our service department to schedule your RV winterization today.

Juniata Valley RV Wins 3rd Flying W Award

Juniata Valley RV is excited to announce our third consecutive Flying W Award! We were named a Platinum Towable Winner by Winnebago Industries, Inc.

The Flying W Award is presented by Winnebago RV manufacturers. They’re awarded to the top 33% of motorhome and towable dealers annually. The award is for excellent service and superior customer satisfaction. For the third year in a row, we’re honored to be recognized by Winnebago as one of their top dealers in the nation.

Juniata Valley RV owner Eric Lunger is pleased to know his dealership has been recognized for its “very competitive pricing and quality customer service.”

“We sell Winnebago because the quality of the product meets the standard we look for in our dealership,” said Lunger.

Shop Juniata Valley RV’s Winnebago inventory in store and online, and trust you’ll receive award-winning service and care.

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