Step Outside - Oklahoma WELCOME TO STEP OUTSIDE! Find the best outdoor fun near you! en-us 30 http://stepoutside.org/ Step Outside - Oklahoma 144 144 http://stepoutside.org/ https://cdnstep-americantownscom.netdna-ssl.com/img/stepoutside_logo.gif Sat, 23 Mar 2019 14:12:38 -0500 5 Awesome RV Campsites in Oklahoma Oklahoma isn’t just a state that you should drive through when you’re RVing. There are many great stops around the state where you can find spectacular scenery, historic sites, and fun activities, all year long. Here are five great spots to park your RV for the weekend in Oklahoma! 

This campground near the beautiful Lake Eufaula has earned awards and garnered rave reviews for its spacious, wide, extra-long RV sites with all the amenities. The Chuck Wagon Café is located on site to cook your meals, and there is a casino, golf course, and museums close by. Kayak and canoe rentals are also on-site and you can enjoy the barnyard zoo, even if you do not have kids. 

Greenleaf State Park offers 23 full hook-up sites, 77 RV sites with water, and 50-amp electric. You can make reservations online. On site, you’ll find tons of amenities and activities, as well as spectacular views. There is an aquatics center with a pool, a miniature golf course, a nature center and kids fishing pond. You can enjoy hiking in the park or boating in the lake. 

The address might be Vinita, but this RV resort is actually in what’s known locally as Grand Towne Lake. Water’s Edge has 80 sites that are 25 feet-wide. Many of the sites have private decks that overlook Grand Lake, and all of the sites have full hook-ups, city water, and sewer service. You’ll find fire rings and grills at each site, laundry facilities on premise, and easy access to a grocery store, gas stations, restaurants, and boating docks. Grand Lake is known for fishing and watersports, and this RV campground is in a beautiful location. 

The Wichita Mountains have got to be one of the best places to observe nature and enjoy stunning scenery in Oklahoma. Doris Campground is the only site which allows RVs. There are only 23 sites with electrical hook-ups, but there are so many opportunities at the park to enjoy nature, it’s not about the amenities available. Bring your hiking boots and trek up the mountain to enjoy the view. Head on over to Medicine Park for a few hours to get your Mears’ hamburger before you leave the area. 

This RV park, located in the sparkling mountains near Lake Altus, offers a fun park for children, complete with a Ferris wheel, water slides, bumper cars, and more. Adults might enjoy the golf course, nature center, paddle boats, and hiking trails. Camping is first come, first served, but there are over 110 sites on the grounds. 

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iStock.com/welcomia http://stepoutside.org/article/5-awesome-rv-campsites-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/5-awesome-rv-campsites-in-oklahoma Fri, 22 Mar 2019 00:00:00 -0500
9 Best Winter Cabin Camping Spots in Oklahoma Tent camping during winter in Oklahoma might be harsh, but if you go to one of these great campsites with cabins, you can enjoy nature, a campfire, and the crisp, cool air all season long. Here are our favorites! 

This KOA ranks in the top two percent of over 500 campgrounds. Although the pool isn’t open in the winter, there’s still plenty to do. The campground offers a rec room with games, movies, and a treadmill. In the area, you’ll find plenty of restaurants, Native American heritage, casinos, and more. 

Bear’s Glen Cabins feature fully-equipped kitchens, full baths, television, heating, an outdoor fire pit, and much more. It sits on 15 acres of private land, with a private dock on Keystone Lake. There are plenty of restaurants nearby, as well as casinos, boat rentals, and local attractions. November to April is the best time for bald eagle viewing in the area. 

The 12 cabins at Rivers Edge overlook the Mountain Fork River. It’s a serene setting, with very little noise and light pollution for viewing the nighttime sky. You’ll find miles of hiking trails, a privately-stocked fishing pond, and loaner bikes. ATVs are welcome. 

These beautiful cabins in central-southern Oklahoma are located in the Arbuckle Mountains. Each cabin is uniquely decorated, sleeps six adults, and has a fully-equipped kitchen. During the day, enjoy nature, shop in town at the antique stores or visit Turner Falls. 

At this KOA, you can fish for crappie or sand bass in Clinton Lake, which is just a short walk from the campground. Lucky Star Casino, golf courses, Route 66 museums, and Stafford Air & Space Museum are within driving distance. Plus, there’s a fenced-in area for pets at the campground to let your buddy run leash-free. 

Although River of Love Cabins are mostly for couples, there are family options at this beautiful location in southern Oklahoma near the Red River. WinStar Casino is just a few miles away, as is Lake Murray State Park and ATV trails. The cabins have full kitchens, AC/heat, linens, and towels and hot tubs. 

Mountain Escape Cottage! #beautifulcabins #riversedgecottages #travelok #relax

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Peckerwood Knob Cabins may only have two cabins, but both are beautiful. If you’re a morning person, stay in the Sunrise Cabin, which has a glass wall overlooking the mountains for an excellent view of the morning sun. The other cabin faces west for sunset views over the mountain. It’s like a private mountain retreat. 

Medicine Park is one of the nicest resort towns in Oklahoma. It’s close to the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge and has some wonderful restaurants and boutiques. White Horse Lodging has three cobblestone cottages with screened-in porches and modern amenities. It’s a lovely place to stay in the winter. 

Even in the off-season, there’s a lot to do at Grand Lake. There’s a game room on site, and an area for four-wheeling. Just a few miles away, you can enjoy the history of the area at the Eastern Trails Museum or get a meal at Clanton’s Café, “the oldest continually owned family restaurant on Route 66 in the state of Oklahoma.” 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/9-best-winter-cabin-camping-spots-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/9-best-winter-cabin-camping-spots-in-oklahoma Fri, 04 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0600
6 Best Ski and Snowboard Stores in Oklahoma Oklahoma may not be the destination most people think about when they’re looking for a place for winter sports like snowboarding and skiing, but there are some great spots in the state to enjoy the snow during the colder months. If you need gear to get out into nature, here are six great stores where you can find the equipment and accessories to keep you warm and to have a great time! 

This store bills itself as Oklahoma City’s only local skateboard and snowboard shop. You’ll find snowboards and gear in this shop, plus have the opportunity to connect with local enthusiasts. 

Sun & Ski has been one of the key places in Oklahoma City for winter sports gear for many years. You can chat with an expert online or in the store to find the right equipment and gear to be safe and have a great time on the slopes. Some of the ski brands they carry are Volkl, Dynastar, and Salomon. Sun & Ski have locations in Norman, Tulsa, and Oklahoma City. 

DICK’s Sporting Goods has snowboarding equipment and gear for all levels of riders. The store carries goggles, protective gear and racks, along with boots and winter outerwear.

This locally-owned store is all about outdoor adventures. It carries a wide variety of products that will fit into your budget for outdoor fun all year long. Get hats, gloves, jackets, and all the essentials you’ll need when you’re outside in the winter for an adventure! 

Hats and gloves for all.

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Zumiez carries Burton snowboards, as well as many other high-quality brands, for men, women, and children, as well as outerwear and other accessories for spending a day in the snow. 

Columbia carries outerwear and footwear perfectly suited for winter sports. They carry high-quality insulated jackets and pants for men, women and children that are waterproof and designed to keep you dry. Make the most of a day on the slopes with excellent gear! 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/6-best-ski-and-snowboard-stores-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/6-best-ski-and-snowboard-stores-in-oklahoma Fri, 04 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0600
8 Best Ice Skating Rinks in Oklahoma Ice skating might be the best winter sport for kids and adults of all ages. It’s a healthy workout and a lot of states offer accessible options with public skating times and rental skates. With a little practice, you can learn to glide across the ice without falling. Here are the eight best ice skating rinks in Oklahoma.  

Downtown Oklahoma City has a beautiful rink that’s part of the Downtown in December lineup. You’ll be surrounded by twinkling lights, music, and boutique shopping. 

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This indoor ice rink is a great place to hone your skating skills! Be sure to check their website for a public skating schedule. There are also Learn-To-Skate programs, hockey lessons, and other sports camps available. 

Edmond’s outdoor rink is only open through Jan. 7, but it offers extended hours starting Dec. 21. Bring the entire family for an afternoon of fun in the sun on the ice! 

This outdoor rink is near Norris Park in the eastern part of the state. Check the Facebook page to make sure that the conditions are right for skating. If it’s too warm, the rink may not freeze hard enough to allow skating. Skate rentals go at just $2, and the admission fees are inexpensive as well! Schedule a private skating session for a truly exciting experience. 

You're the only person I'm falling for😏💕

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The Oilers Ice Center offers public skate times seven days a week. This Tulsa rink offers classes on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, with a special session for adults at 11:15 a.m. on Saturday! Check out their Learn-To-Skate program as well. 

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At this celebration of the season, the ice rink is open Thursday through Sunday. Over the course of the month, there are several themed skates from your children’s favorite movies and shows. The rink closes on Dec. 23, so don’t wait to enjoy the ice! 

This outdoor ice rink is open every day of the week until Jan. 7. You can even get a season pass to save money while you’re having fun. Plus, with your ice rink ticket, you can get discounted tickets to attend Oklahoma State University basketball games. 

This indoor rink offers public skating throughout the week. Come out on Tuesday nights for special family night pricing with skate rental included. You can also buy season passes for the entire family to make it even more affordable to learn to skate. They offer special prices for military, so bring your ID. 

alright @ou_hockey we're ready for our scholarship #pros

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http://stepoutside.org/article/8-best-ice-skating-rinks-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/8-best-ice-skating-rinks-in-oklahoma Fri, 04 Jan 2019 00:00:00 -0600
Best Winter Weekend Getaway in Quartz Mountain Nature Park Although Oklahoma is not known for winter sports, there are some great spots in the state to enjoy the cooler weather. Quartz Mountain Nature Park, near Altus, has dozens of activities both in and outdoors. With its temperate weather, there is plenty to be enjoyed outdoors year-round. Here’s the best winter weekend getaway at Quartz Mountain Nature Park.  

Winter camping? Of course! Campsites at the Scissortail Campground are first-come, first-serve, but they do have quite a few other campgrounds. The RV sites can fit two tents and have water and electricity, and they also have a few one-tent sites. The park also has a few cabins to rent. 

If you enjoy rock climbing, rappelling or top roping, you’ll find over 80 routes at Baldy Point. Most of the climbs are 5.7 to 5.11, with low-angle faces, cracks and chimneys. Make sure to follow proper state guidelines and climb responsibly! 

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This trail is only about a half-mile long, making it a good choice for beginners. It has some fantastic views, because you’ll climb the granite face of Quartz Mountain. Expect gorgeous views of Lake Altus against Oklahoma’s rocky terrain.

The park has a paved bicycle trail near the park entrance on SH 44A. Pedestrians, skateboards, and roller blades are also welcome on the trial. On the park’s website, you can download a trail map with lots of information. 

Three years ago, the lake had two deadly golden algae blooms, but state officials reported that the fishing has recovered. Ever since then fishing has been booming. You’ll find bass, sunfish, and catfish in the lake. Check out the state’s fishing laws to make sure you are eligible to fish! 

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The Nature Center offers seasonal displays and information about birdwatching. Eagles can usually be seen from late-December through early-March in the area. Even if you don’t spy an eagle, there are hundreds of resident and visiting birds all year long, such as the cardinal, the great blue heron, the great horned owl, the northern flicker, and many more!

The golf course is open year-round, unless they get a lot of rain or ice. They offer club rentals and have a range, if you just want to practice your shots. It’s a beautiful course set between the prairie grass and mountains. 

This museum is one of the top visitor attractions in Southwest Oklahoma. You’ll find indoor and outdoor activities. You can dig up a mammoth. Plus, you’ll learn more about the native people who lived in the area. Lawton isn’t far from the park, and this museum has a lot to offer. 

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Trader Toms is the place for a drink. One Facebook reviewer says, “the place is like a museum.” You might find live entertainment, even without the entertainment this “Great American Beer Joint” provides you with a memorable experience. If you talk to the owner, you’ll learn a lot about the area and the good old days. 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/best-winter-weekend-getaway-in-quartz-mountain-nature-park http://stepoutside.org/article/best-winter-weekend-getaway-in-quartz-mountain-nature-park Mon, 12 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0600
SPOTLIGHT: Things to Do in and Around Bernice State Park On the northwest corner of Grand Lake sits Bernice State Park. Featuring RV and tent campsites on the lake’s edge, world-class fishing, and plenty of places to hike, Bernice makes for a great weekend away. Next time you’re in the area, check out all the great things to do in and around Bernice State Park. 

Bernice is known as the “Crappie Capital of the World.” The fishing at the park is off the hook, pun intended. Largemouth bass, white bass, and channel catfish are abundant. If you’re not into fishing, you’ll find plenty of places to birdwatch. The walking path is handicap-accessible and features two wildlife watch towers. The park also boasts a nature center. The opportunities are endless here and you’ll enjoy every moment of being immersed in nature. 

This museum houses over 50 custom-built exotic vehicles. Although many were built by Starbird himself over the past 50 years, some of the cars are from other designers. You don’t have to be a car enthusiast to appreciate these vehicles, many of which were futuristic in their day. 

This museum has several historic buildings which house antiques, collectibles, and reproductions, to give visitors a chance to see what life was like in the late 19th century in Oklahoma. The Village opens in March for the tourist season. Check out the calendar for historic trade and craft demonstrations. 

Enjoy the games and entertainment at this casino not far from the lake’s shore. Venue 655 Restaurant is a great place to grab a meal, but the real excitement are the gaming machines. Come in, relax, and try to win big! 

Sin in the city - walking away.

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For some down-home cooking, Road Hog is the place to be. The décor is definitely unique. The motorcycle over the bar is truly an antique. The French fries are made fresh. The pork is smoked in-house. The burgers cooked to order. Get lunch here. You won’t regret it. 

Dinner after a nice day of Golf!

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If you’re not into camping, you’ll find off- and on-season accommodations at this lakeside resort. Stay in the hotel, or get a private cabin with all the amenities you’d expect. 

It's a beautiful day on Grand Lake. #nature #lake #lazyday #happycamper

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Plan a fishing trip with this fisherman who has 26 years of experience catching fish in Grand Lake. He can accommodate large parties, furnishes tackle and gear, and takes you to some of the best fishing spots on the lake. 

This golf course sits near the Pensacola Dam which makes a lovely backdrop while you’re teeing off. It’s a beautiful public course with tree-lined fairways and minimum water hazards. 

The Artichoke won the People’s Choice Award at the 2017 Taste of Grand event. It’s a charming restaurant, a renovated farmhouse that retained its style. The chef knows how to cook a steak to perfection. They use fresh, local produce, growing their own herbs and supporting local producers. The restaurant is eco-friendly and locally-owned. Make reservations for dinner, especially in the summer months, to make sure you get a table. 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/spotlight-things-to-do-in-and-around-bernice-state-park http://stepoutside.org/article/spotlight-things-to-do-in-and-around-bernice-state-park Fri, 02 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0500
SPOTLIGHT: Things to Do in and Around Gloss Mountain State Park From its magnificent rivers to its rolling landscapes, Oklahoma is one of the most naturally stunning states in the U.S. To best experience what this beautiful state has to offer, escape to Gloss Mountain State Park. With its opportunity for hiking, biking, fishing, and birdwatching, plus area attractions worth making a weekend getaway out of, you’ll have plenty to enjoy. Gloss Mountain is one of the true gems of Oklahoma. Here are the best things to do in and around the park. 

The Gloss Mountains are located near Fairview, Oklahoma. Sometimes, they’re called the Glass Mountains, because of the selenite content that makes these mountains appear to have a shiny, glass-like exterior. The park has restroom facilities, and public water and grills. Climbing to the top of Cathedral Mountain gives you a spectacular view across the landscape. Bring your camera to take home your memories! 

Gloss Mountain State Park near Fairview, #Oklahoma.

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The Wildlife Department recommends taking Loop 8 around the area to experience the mesas that glitter with bright hues of green, gold, and blue. Take Highway 412 between Orienta and Bouse Junction for a scenic route that is also a great birding route. You might see road runners, turkey vultures, and eagles. 

Park in the lower parking lot. Follow the trail to the top of Cathedral Mountain. The trail is 1.2 miles in length. The park has brochures available which point out the interesting facts, but you’ll see many rock formations, working oil pump jacks, ponds, wildlife, and stunning views along every step of the hike. There’s a stairway system in place to help you get to the top. 

About 30 miles northeast of the park, you’ll find a museum that was once a Harvey House. It’s a nice place to get some history about the area and see what it might have been like riding the train in the late-19th century. 

Santa Fe Railroad Depot, Waynoka, OK

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This authentic German restaurant is a great place to get dinner. It’s been serving Bavarian food, like jaeger schnitzel, pretzels and authentic German beers since 1998. While this is an Oklahoma favorite all year long, the German cuisine is particularly excellent during the colder months.  

The best German food I've ever had. Seriously.

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At one time, sod houses dotted the Oklahoma landscape. This sod house in Aline, about 20 miles from the state park, is the only one remaining in Oklahoma that was built in the late-19th century. This museum has preserved early artifacts from a homesteader’s life. It’s a great exhibit to experience what life might have been like in early statehood. 

I love that piano!!!

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The state park doesn’t offer campsites, but this ranch, just a few minutes away from the park has campsites, RV sites, and a lodge. They have a stocked farm pond, just bring your license and equipment. From May to September, the wildflowers are in bloom and truly a sight to see. The light pollution is limited, making star gazing a great evening activity! 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/spotlight-things-to-do-in-and-around-gloss-mountain-state-park http://stepoutside.org/article/spotlight-things-to-do-in-and-around-gloss-mountain-state-park Fri, 02 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0500
5 Cool Spots for ATV Off-Roading in Oklahoma ATVs are popular in Oklahoma. The terrain makes for exciting rides, whether you’re in desert country in southwest Oklahoma, green country in the northeast, or near one of the lakes. Many communities have designated off-roading opportunities for ATVs, but make sure you know Oklahoma law before riding. All riders under the age of 18 must wear a DOT-approved helmet and double riding is prohibited on public land, unless the ATV is designed to carry passengers. Here are five great places to take your ATV for a day of fun! 

Lake Murray is a popular vacation site for Oklahomans. The ATV trails are on the northwest side of the lake. The trails area costs $10 per rider. It’s about 1,000 acres for ATVs, motorcycles, and dirt bikes. There are about 10 miles of trails with great sand. There is a campsite in the area to let you spend your time focusing on the ride, not on all the details. 

Little Sahara is probably the most popular spot for off-roading and ATVs with almost 1,500 acres of sand. The park is completely geared toward ATV riding, and you can even ride at night. Riders must pay a daily fee of $10, but there are miles of trails in the sand dunes, as well as open areas of sand. There are plenty of places to rent ATVs, gas up, and get drinks and food. You’ll also find over 200 campsites, first come, first serve. You’ll want to make sure you have the proper equipment to ride, so check their website for more details! 

S'gonna be a good weekend.

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There are about 33 miles of open road in the Ouachita National Forest open to ATVs year-round. During the summer, another 20 miles open up. You need a permit to ride in the area, and you have to make sure you stay on the open roads. Off-roading on the forest floor is prohibited. The rules are there to protect the environment. Read the rules before taking your ATV out, but the terrain is varied and challenging. 

Robbers Cave State Park opened to ATVs last year. It’s open only to ATVs, no Jeeps. There are 250 acres with trails for riding, and what makes this park unique is that it is mostly rocky and rugged terrain. It’s much different than the two other state parks where ATVs can ride. The terrain can be steep at times, but the views are amazing. It costs $20 a day per ATV, not riders. The park is open dawn to dusk. There are no rental opportunities in the area. 

Red River ATV Park is for those who enjoy mud and sun. It features over 400 acres of riding area, that is open all year-round on the weekends. You’ll find showers and bathrooms, as well as a vehicle wash station. You’ll need to bring your own ATV, because there are no rentals. It costs $15 per person per day, but if you love riding through the mud, this is one of the best spots in Oklahoma. 

I guess you could say I like you about as much I like mud😊

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*Note: Age restrictions, special licenses, and other requirements for off highway vehicles vary from state to state. Before heading out on your OHV, please consult your local regulations.

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Maciej Kopaniecki/Shutterstock.com http://stepoutside.org/article/5-cool-spots-for-atv-offroading-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/5-cool-spots-for-atv-offroading-in-oklahoma Thu, 01 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0500
5 Stunning Foliage Hikes in Oklahoma If you want to enjoy the colors of the fall in Oklahoma, you’ll want to head to the eastern part of the state. The climate east of I-35 is more conducive to leaves turning different colors, and will put on a display of color like you’ve never seen before. Here are five breathtaking foliage hikes in Oklahoma!  

This park marks the start of the Talimena Scenic Drive, which takes you through the Ouachita National Forest. There are many different hiking trails in the state park, for hikers of all levels. The area is known for its spectacular fall foliage. 

This park was once a hideout for outlaws, such as Jesse James and Belle Starr. In the fall, it’s a beautiful place to hike and enjoy fall colors. You can go hiking in the Sans Bois Mountains or take a walking history tour through the park. Some of the best trails are near the lakes, where you can find a lot of wildlife and foliage. 

Green Country is a great place for fall colors. In the forest at Osage Hills State Park, you’ll see vivid shades of yellow, orange and red, dotted with green leaves that haven’t turned. Osage Hills has plenty of hiking trails along the water, and it has a walking historic tour. You’ll want to drive to each location, then hike to the viewing station. The Hollow Bridge is a beautiful example of keystone construction. 

Travel OK lists Beavers Bend State Park as one of the best bets for fall foliage in the state. The towering trees turn shades of yellow and red in the fall. Mixed with the pine trees that never turn colors, it’s a beautiful sight. Highway 259 is one of the best driving spots in the area, but within the park, there are many different trails for hikers of all levels. The Cedar Bluff Hiking Trail is highly recommended. 

This lake, just north of Claremore, is close to the birthplace ranch of Will Rogers, famous Oklahoma humorist. You can walk through the grounds of the Dog Iron Ranch and enjoy the fall colors, or take a hike on one of the trails tucked away near the lake. The oak and hickory leaves can change into stunning colors, depending on the fall temperatures. Spend an autumn afternoon enjoying the cool breeze off the lake and the gorgeous forest. To top off your day, stop by Claremore’s Route 66 Nut House for some homemade apple butter with the delicious flavors of fall. 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/5-stunning-foliage-hikes-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/5-stunning-foliage-hikes-in-oklahoma Thu, 01 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0500
ATV Off-Roading Adventure at Keystone Lake Oklahoma has some great areas with excellent off-roading trails. But why stop at a day of riding your ATV and going home? Enjoy a whole day of fun and adventure when you start out at Keystone Lake. Sand Springs is a small-town with a ton of history and some great local restaurants. Stay overnight at a dude ranch to really relax and enjoy some downtime. It’s time to start your adventure.  

Hickory House is on the northwest side of the lake. Grab some coffee and breakfast before your day of fun outside. It’s a traditional diner with good home-style cooking. 

Appalachia Bay Recreation Area is the only one at Keystone Lake open for off-roading, but it’s a popular site for off-roaders. Go 12 miles west of Sand Springs on Highway 64 to the Bear’s Glen exit. Take a right turn, after the overpass, turn right again. Then take the first left to the end of the road.  This particular area has picnic tables and restrooms. There is a fee for daily use, $4 per vehicle. The area can close when the waters are high. It’s an urban wildlife refuge, with plenty of birds. Bring a camera and binoculars to enjoy nature. In some seasons, you might even see eagles. 

The Steer Inn is a locally-owned family steakhouse that serves lunch and dinner. On Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, they offer an all-you-can-eat buffet, but the steaks are highly recommended. They hand bread their onion rings too, so don’t miss out on those!  

Meadowlake Ranch is a bed and breakfast, dude ranch, and event center nestled among spring-fed lakes, waterfalls, bluffs, and gardens. It’s the perfect place to stay after a day of off-roading. You can soak in an oversized Jacuzzi tub and then relax in the tranquil evening. In the morning, you’ll be treated to hot coffee and a delicious southern breakfast. Ask about their “Dude for a Day” if you’d like to try your hand at ranch activities. 

Sand Springs was a planned industrial town, and it has a rich history. Page is fondly remembered in the community today. The museum was built to honor him. It’s a lovely example of Art Deco architecture and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places in America. It houses many exhibits which illustrate Sand Springs’ history. It’s the first stop on the self-guided historic tour map. When you leave the museum, take a walk around town to visit some of the most interesting places that tell the story of Sand Springs. It includes a Native American Cemetery, St. Patrick’s Parish, and the springs. 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/atv-offroading-adventure-at-keystone-lake http://stepoutside.org/article/atv-offroading-adventure-at-keystone-lake Thu, 01 Nov 2018 00:00:00 -0500
5 Perfect Fall Camping Spots in Oklahoma Oklahoma has great temperatures in the fall, ideal for camping and enjoying the outdoors. The nights get cooler, but not so cold that it’s unpleasant sleeping in a tent. The days are warm, but not so hot that it’s uncomfortable hiking along a nature trail. The best places for fall camping are in eastern Oklahoma, because the trees are deciduous and the leaves change color. Here are five perfect fall camping spots where you can have a relaxing weekend watching the stars, building a fire and eating s’mores. 

This campground is located along the Talimena Scenic Highway at Mile Post 23.7 on Okla. 1. It’s a peaceful setting with several miles of trails that aren’t too difficult or too easy. It’s the perfect place for fall camping because this stretch of road is known for its beautiful fall colors. This site is ADA compliant, has vault toilets, and can accommodate campers. 

Red Rock Canyon is a favorite campsite all year long for rappellers, hikers, and fishermen. In the fall, the foliage does its best to provide a show. You’ll see stunning shades of red, yellow, and orange from the Caddo maple tree, which is native to the park. This park was once a stop along the California Trail, and you can still find wagon wheel ruts left by the settlers who were trying to find a better life. 

The trees in northeast Oklahoma are beautiful in the fall, and one of the best places to enjoy them is at Keystone State Park. The park has many places to camp, but it also offers water activities, such as boating and fishing. Make sure to plan one meal on the floating restaurant at the marina. 

Grand Lake offers even more fall foliage, and if you’re lucky, you’ll catch sight of white pelicans who are migrating south. They start to fly through in late September until October, and it’s amazing to see flocks of these stunning birds. This area has some excellent fishing spots, tent sites, boat ramps, and more. You’ll have easy access to supplies in Langley or Ketchum, along with a few restaurants when you’re too busy playing to cook. 

Greenleaf State Park was built by the Works Progress Administration in the 1930s. The original buildings are made of native stone, but there’s more to this park than its history. You’ll see spectacular scenery, anytime you visit. In the fall, expect the leaves to change colors, providing even more beautiful views. At this park, you’ll find cabins with satellite television, if you want an upscale camping experience. It even offers one handicapped-accessible cabin on the lake. Pets can stay in the cabins for an additional fee. Go hiking. Take a boat, kayak, canoe or raft out on the lake. Play volleyball. Watch birds. Just get outside and enjoy the fresh air. 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/5-perfect-fall-camping-spots-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/5-perfect-fall-camping-spots-in-oklahoma Tue, 30 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0500
10 Best Archery Outfitters in Oklahoma Whether it’s for bow hunting or target shooting, Oklahomans know a thing or two about archery. Maintaining your equipment and staying up to date on the latest in great gear is essential, and this deeply-rooted sport has a variety of excellent local shops all across the state. Whether you’re looking to get your bow serviced or you’re in the market for something brand new, you’ll find all of the best brands and expert advice at these 10 local archery outfitters in Oklahoma.  

Archery Outpost has a pro shop, a range and league opportunities. Beginner shooters can rent bows to use on the range. The pro shop features trained and certified technicians who can repair and maintain your bow to peak performance. 

"I feel like you are more of a man, once a bow is in your hands." @jonathan_dickey

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Pat’s Archery bills itself as Oklahoma’s largest and oldest archery pro shop. It’s been in business since the 1960s, locally owned and operated by avid hunters and outdoorsmen. It has six indoor lanes where you can test new equipment, practice and enjoy the comradery of friends and fellow archers. 

Ordered my bow! #newhobbiesarefun #tryingnewthings

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Arrowhead has an indoor range where kids under age 12 can shoot free with a paying adult, and it has opened a 3D outdoor range at Crystal Lake, complete with a 14-foot tower with four shooting stations. The pro shop features trained technicians who can help you find the right equipment for your needs. 

Archery Traditions has a super-knowledgeable staff. The business is family-owned and operated. It has 21 very wide lanes, and welcomes all bow types on the range. One brand they have is Martin, but they also carry youth equipment. 

Archers Corner carries Genesis bows and arrows, which are the official school archery equipment. Purchase a bow from the store and get special range rates. You’ll find bowhunting equipment for adults and service from expert technicians. 

Call me Katniss #avpfea

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This archery store not only carries traditional archery equipment, but also bowfishing equipment and information. If you’ve ever thought about combining a love for shooting with fishing, it’s a sport you need to check out. 

Buckhorn Archery is locally owned and operated by bow hunters who want to pass on their love of the sport. These folks will help you fit a bow to your needs, which can make the difference in how much you enjoy archery and want to get out and shoot. The store carries many different brands of equipment, including Hoyt

At Bow Pro Shop, you’ll find all kinds of equipment and accessories for archery, including Gold Tip which are said to be some of the most accurate. 

Murf’s Guns is a third-generation owned business that has a great selection of archery equipment in addition to guns. You’ll find the popular Mathews brand, along with other accessories to make your archery game its best. 

Whether you’re into recreational archery, target shooting or hunting, you’ll find a great selection of archery equipment in this locally-owned store that offers excellent customer service. Find Carbon Express arrows, plus many other popular archery brands in this store. 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-archery-outfitters-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-archery-outfitters-in-oklahoma Mon, 29 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0500
10 Best Bait and Tackle Shops in Oklahoma Oklahoma is home to hundreds of lakes stocked with bass, catfish, crappie, and more. If you’re an angler, there are numerous opportunities for a top-notch fishing experience. But before you head out to your local fishing hole, you’ll need to stock up on some gear. From live bait to rods and reels, the 10 best bait and tackle shops in Oklahoma will give you everything you’ll need.  

This store is Oklahoma City’s only locally-owned and independent fishing tackle retailer. They advertise competitive prices with excellent customer service. 

This bait shop is near the main boat dock at Tom Steed Lake. Find all varieties of bait at Tom Steed. In addition to bait, this shop features beer and burgers. What’s better than that? 

Grand Lake has many great places for fishing, all year long. The owners at Ketch-Um Bait Shop can point you in the right direction and have all the equipment you need to toss a line into the water. Make sure to grab a bite at Bobbers Café, which features some excellent home cooking.  

TJ’s went through a remodel earlier this year. It’s been updated to include a restaurant, but it still carries bait and fishing equipment. It has friendly service from locals who know the area and all of bait you could ever need! 

One reviewer on Facebook says that this bait shop feels like visiting your grandma and grandpa’s house, and we think that’s pretty special. The owners know the area and carry a large selection of fresh and frozen bait for the best catch of the day. 

Tonja drove down from Ponca City for our world famous green worms!

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Nabatak Outdoors has been serving fishermen in the Claremore area since 1967. With that kind of history, you know they’ll be up on the best fishing holes. This store is more like a sporting store, with all types of apparel and equipment for a day on the lake. 

At D/J’s, you’ll find live bait, cold drinks, and more for your fishing outing. The owners are active in the community and have a lot of knowledge about the best fishing locations in the area. 

At Big Al’s, you’ll find custom fishing lures and tackle. The store gets live bait in from Louisiana and Texas each week, so it’s really fresh. But you’ll find frozen bait like chicken livers and gizzard shad, if that’s what you want. It also has rods and reels, plus years of experience to help you find the gear that works for you. 

At this full-service marina, you can find live bait and tackle, plus get your boat serviced by certified techs. You’ll find Bass Cat boats, Polar Kraft boats, and even used boats for great deals. 

The Mountain Fork River is one of the best places for fly fishing in Oklahoma. This tackle shop not only carries the gear and equipment you’ll need, but can also offer guides to help you hone your technique and find the best spots to catch some trout. 

Fly shop. #beaversbend #flyshop #statepark

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http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-bait-and-tackle-shops-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-bait-and-tackle-shops-in-oklahoma Mon, 29 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Best Places to Fish in the South This Fall Redfish are starting to move inshore and set up at the mouths of bays, inlets and deltas as their annual spawning run commences. The bottom line for fishermen is outstanding fishing from late September through November in the northern Gulf.

Likewise, bass fishing is starting to pick up again as the weather begins to cool. Huge schools of threadfin shad are starting to filter away from open-water ledges into bays and tributaries where feeding conditions and water temperatures are more optimum.

Bass follow the food, first setting up on ledges at the mouths of inlets and creeks to waylay shad, then migrating back toward shallower water to keep up with their quarry.

Fall Script for Southern Bass

Bass rule in Dixie and cooler weather brings out an army of anglers who go after them. Whether largemouth, smallmouth or spotted bass, they’re available in most waters and sometimes all three varieties are present in a fishery, ready to aggravate or gratify those who seek them.

Hot Spots To Fish: When it comes to the South’s best lakes for fall fishing, the big TVA impoundments fit the bill. Because this is bass tournament country, dozens of YouTube videos and Facebook sites of pro anglers offer useful advice on where and how to catch autumn largemouths. Likewise, guide services are plentiful; just Google “fishing guides” for the lake you’re visiting or type in the town nearest the lake you wish to fish on the interactive map on this page.

Tackle You’ll Need: A 7-foot medium/heavy rod such as the St. Croix Premier Cranking, a baitcasting reel like the Abu Garcia Revo Winch and 10- to 14-pound-test monofilament makes a good combination to fish downsized lures.

Quick tip: This is strictly a match-the-hatch deal. Use lures that are about the same size as wandering shad. If young-of-the-year threadfins are on the bass menu, try small swim baits fished on drop-shot rigs.

 

Best Lures/Baits: Shad-colored, shallow- and medium-diving square-billed or coffin-billed crankbaits are autumn standouts. Popular lures include the Strike King 6XD, Bandit 100 or 200, Duo Realis M65, Livetarget Magnum Shad BaitBall Squarebill, Megabass S-Crank, Lucky Craft Squarebill 2.5, Storm Arashi and Rapala Shad Rap.

Fish them around shoreline cover and on the flats between creek drop-offs and the bank. Other fallback baits include spinnerbaits like the Booyah Super Shad, Stanley Vibrashaft and Nichols Pulsator. Good buzzbait options can be found from Lunker Lure, Damiki, Santone and Dirty Jigs.

Rendezvous With Redfish

Along the northern Gulf Coast from Carrabelle, FL, to Grand Isle, LA, the redfish season begins in late September and continues in stages through December. Some anglers fish in the surf with cut bait, while others station themselves on area piers or in boats on relatively shallow flats near channel cuts.

Hot Spots To Fish: For boating anglers, a couple of spots stick out. Pensacola Bay Pass is a must-fish for boaters. Anchor up on the broad flat between old Fort Pickens and the channel, set out lines as the tide changes to incoming, and hang on. Need more help? Redfish University Pensacola Fishing Charters (850-748-4368, redfishuniversity.com) specializes in the big drum.

At Grand Isle, LA, book a trip with Gotta Go Fishing Charters (225-921-3642, gottagofishingcharters.com). The marshes and inshore waters around Venice, LA, are primo redfish haunts as well. Captain Mike Frenette (504-782-0924, laredfish.com or (mike@venicefishing.net) is a top guide here.

Photograph Courtesy of Strike King Lure Company 
Louisiana’s coastal waters are ground zero for the hottest autumn redfish action along the northern Gulf Coast. A variety of natural baits and artificials get the job done.

Tackle You’ll Need: “Rat” reds of 3 pounds and up, or real bruisers weighing in excess of 20 pounds require a range of tackle options. Bass fishing tackle – whether spinning or baitcasting – is perfect for handling smaller fish and for casting jigs or swimbaits that weigh less than an ounce. A Shimano Stradic spinning reel and 7-foot medium-action Shimano Compre rod with 14-pound-test monofilament.

For bigger fish, consider a Penn Battle II BTLII5000 with 20-pound-test monofilament or 40-pound-test braid, and a 30-pound-test fluorocarbon leader. A 7-foot medium-heavy spinning rod (such as the Penn Battalion BATIN1220S70) should handle any bait rigs or lures and wear down a bull redfish in short order.

Quick Tip: Incoming tides in late evening or at night are primo times for reds as the fish free-spawn then in the mouths of coastal bays and estuaries. If you can’t fish any other time, make sure you fish the incoming tides.

 

Best Lures/Baits: Redfish aren’t particular about their dietary requirements and will eat anything from blue crabs to halved mullet. Swimming spoons such as the Johnson Sprite (johnsonfishing.com), swimbaits and jigs or even topwater poppers, such as the Heddon Saltwater Spook, will elicit strikes.

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Photograph Courtesy of Strike King Lure Company Photo By Garrick Dixon Shallow- to medium-running crankbaits probably account for more bass than any other lure in the fall when the fish are on the prowl for shad in feeder creeks and coves. http://stepoutside.org/article/best-places-to-fish-in-the-south-this-fall http://stepoutside.org/article/best-places-to-fish-in-the-south-this-fall Thu, 11 Oct 2018 00:00:00 -0500
7 Best Outdoor Fall Activities in Oklahoma Whether you love or hate pumpkin spice lattes, you’ve got to admit that there’s something special about fall. It might be the leaves transforming nature into colorful artwork. Maybe it’s the cooler temperatures that make you want hot apple cider while you’re watching your hometown football game. Autumn is probably the perfect season to get outdoors and have fun. Here are seven of the best fall activities in Oklahoma. 

This conference and festival is a fundraiser for the Bigfoot Scholarship Fund, but it’s a blast if you’re into myths and legends of Bigfoot. In the evening, bigfoot encounter stories are told around the campfire, all are invited to share their stories. During the day, opt for a hike the forest where Bigfoot is thought to live. Saturday morning offers a 5K/one-mile run. There is plenty of excitement to go around and activities to do!

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With its magnificent red canyon walls, challenging hikes, and ample campsites, Red Rock Canyon is a fall camping dream. If it’s warm enough, you can camp with a tent for $14 per night. Guests are more than welcome to hook-up their RV for $22-$25 per night, as well.

This scenic highway was designed to be a beautiful drive in the fall when the leaves change. You can pick your adventure, whether you’re a history buff or want some adventure in the great outdoors. If you’re making it a weekend trip, try to stop for dinner at The Rock House in Talihena. You’ll need to make reservations, but the views of the mountains from your dining table are breathtaking.

Oklahoma has dozens of haunted houses that are only open in October, and Trail of Fear has to be one of the best and longest-running attractions in the state. It has almost 20 years of terror. It’s open every weekend in October and typically the weekend following Halloween.

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The season opens in mid-September with a corn maze in a design to honor a local hero. In October, the corn maze gets haunted when the sun goes down. Don't forget to sign up for the Monster Trail 5K and one-mile fun run. There are a lot of events going on in the fall months so be sure to check out their event page for more details.

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This family-owned stable offers trail rides for new and experienced riders. Get the whole cowboy experience by planning your vacation to sleep under stars, cook over an open fire and relax in the peace and quiet of nature.

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The Broken Bow Trout Guide Service is owned and operated by experienced fisherman Steve Branson. If you’d like to learn a thing or two about trout fishing, it’s best to get some hands-on experience with an expert! Branson offers trips for spin casting and fly fishing as well as a special Rainbow Trout Package which includes four hours of fishing for rainbow trout split between fly and spin casting. 

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http://stepoutside.org/article/7-best-outdoor-fall-activities-in-oklahoma http://stepoutside.org/article/7-best-outdoor-fall-activities-in-oklahoma Wed, 12 Sep 2018 00:00:00 -0500