Lake Nacimiento Camping Trip

Lake Nacimiento is a popular camping resort for people from all over California. Luckily for us college students, it is only about an hour outside of San Luis Obispo! There are many options for staying at this resort, you can either stay in the cabins or camp at the campgrounds.

The lake offers rentals for all different types of water toys and boats so you are guaranteed to have a good time! The weather gets really warm during the summertime so the cool water feels amazing on a hot day.

Some advice for your trip:

  • bring lots of water and food
  • bring sunscreen, it gets really hot during the day
  • bring lots of blankets for the cold nights
  • camp at the Pine Knoll campground, it’s closest to the water

Check out this video of my camping trip to Lake Nacimiento. It gives some tips and testimonials and shows some awesome water sports. You have to make sure you cross this camping trip off your SLO Graduation Bucket List! You will have a good time no matter what.

Coming to the end of the SLO Graduation Bucket List

Unfortunately every list must come to end, and I’m afraid that time has come for the SLO Graduation Bucket List. There will no longer be weekly posts on this blog of fun things to do in San Luis Obispo. Although, there may be sporadic posts when I find something that absolutely needs to be told to the world.

Creating this blog has been one of the best class assignments I have ever done. I got to do so many fun things and have so many new experiences that created amazing memories. Being able to blog and write about these experiences was a great way to reminisce on them.

Jenna Alvarado at Avila Beach. Photo by Nina Martin.

Jenna Alvarado at Avila Beach. Photo by Nina Martin.

I can truly say there was no bad part of this blogging experience, it didn’t even feel like I was doing homework the whole time. I hope that current and future students, or even just people staying in SLO for a while, will use this bucket list to create wonderful memories for themselves.

Overall, I had 281 views and four comments on my blog. The comments were all of people doing a “pingback” to my site, which is when they use my blog as a reference on their own blog or website.

By far the most interesting work I did for this blog was when I did my interview with the Assistant General Manager of Tobin James Cellars. This was such an awesome experience because I got to learn so much about wine, something I had no knowledge of previously. It was so cool to get to see how a tasting room works and where all the wine is made.

Entrance to the Tobin James Tasting Room. Photo by Nina Martin.

Entrance to the Tobin James Tasting Room. Photo by Nina Martin.

Peers from the class who viewed my blog said they thought it was really cool and they loved all the new ideas they got from looking at it. Katie said she liked the layout of my blog and that she would really like to try a lot of the things on the bucket list. Dylan said that he learned about a lot of new places to go in SLO and liked all the tips and suggestions that were given.

Thank you for visiting my blog and I hope this list will give you some ideas of really fun and adventurous things to do in SLO! Be sure to visit the site and watch the video of a great camping trip to Lake Nacimiento which is coming in two days.

Get ready for the ultimate camping experience!

Are you the outdoorsy type? Do you like spending all day on the lake and camping waterside? Well then the video that I am going to post next week is going to be perfect for you! The video next week is going to be a full profile of Lake Nacimiento.

Lake Nacimiento is about 45 minutes to an hour outside of San Luis Obispo and is a perfect place to spend your weekend camping! They offer tons of lakeside campsites that are all first come first serve, except on holiday weekends.

You can also rent all different types of boats out on the lake, including house boats, speed boats and boats with towers. They also offer rentals of water sport gear, such as water skis and wake boards for a fairly cheap price.

Lake Nacimiento. Photo from flickr.

Lake Nacimiento. Photo from flickr.

The video will include interviews with a camp host from Lake Nacimiento as well as interviews with SLOcals (San Luis Obispo locals) who frequent the lake every summer for water fun! You will also get to see footage of lake-goers showing off their skills on wake boards and water skis.

As a bonus, the video will include footage of tips and suggestions to help make your camping experience better. I’ll show you how to set up the best campsite possible and tips for picking a good camp spot on the lake!

Check out this video for a little preview of what you can do at the lake!

So if you’re interested in watching some extreme water sports and experiencing a super fun camping trip, tune in to my blog next week and watch the video on Lake Nacimiento! I guarantee the video will make you want to go out to the lake and cross it off your SLO Graduation Bucket List!

If you have any suggestions or tips for this ultimate camping experience video just comment on this post!

Pine Mountain Trail

Pine Mountain Trail is located in Atascadero, which is just about 20 minutes outside of San Luis Obispo. This hike is fairly short, only about 25 minutes, but is pretty much a constant incline the whole way up, which makes the way down almost a sprint. Although, the view at the top of the mountain is amazing, you can see all of Atascadero and beyond. If you’re looking for a short hike with a great view take this hike and cross it off your SLO Graduation Bucket List! Check out my Vine video for a view from the top!

Mustang Lanes

Mustang Lanes is the on-campus bowling ally at Cal Poly, located in University Union. As the only bowling ally in San Luis Obispo, it attracts tons of students and community members daily! The bowling ally has a full arcade and is right next to the delicious pizza restaurant Ciao! So next time you are on campus cross going to Mustang Lanes off your SLO Graduation Bucket List!

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Paso Robles Wine Country-Tobin James Cellars

Paso Robles, about 30 minutes north of San Luis Obispo, is rapidly becoming one of the most well-known cities in the country for wine. Otherwise known as “Wine Country“, Paso Robles has hundreds of cellars and vineyards producing some of the best wine that gets distributed all over the world. With the Paso Robles wineries being so close to SLO they are a great option, for those college students over 21, to go to on weekends and broaden their minds in an exciting and tasty new culture.

Tobin James Cellars is one of the oldest and most famous wineries from Paso Robles. I was lucky enough to talk with the Assistant General Manager of Tobin James Cellars, Ben Lunt, who gave me some insight of the history of Tobin James. Check out this slideshow of the cellars and my interview with Ben Lunt and some his Tobin James customers. Make sure to go and visit this amazing cellar and cross if off your SLO Graduation Bucket List!

Also follow Tobin James Cellars on Twitter @tjcellars!

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Top 5 Reasons College Students Should Use the Groupon App!

Ever find yourself looking for something new and fun to do but can’t seem to scrounge up the cash to do it? Well, this is normal for college students who are looking to expand their life in many different realms for a low price. The Groupon App is perfect for students looking for just that! Groupon gives you amazing deals for 50-90% off the best things to do, see, eat and buy in your town.

This app can be downloaded on the iPhone or Android phones and will bring you a load of fun! Here are the 5 top reasons to download this app:

  1. It’s free to download- can’t get any cheaper than that!
  2. You can buy and redeem the coupons directly from your phone- this saves you time and makes it easy for spontaneous adventures to be had!
  3. You can share Groupon deals with your friends and family via social media- makes it easy to get more people in on the fun and make new friends!
  4. The coupons are customized to fit your preferences- Groupon tracks your searches and interests and delivers you coupons based on these preferences. This makes it quick and easy and a guaranteed good time!
  5. Downloading the app saves you time…and ink- by not having to print out your coupons you save time, are able to use them on-the-go and saves you money on ink, which any poor college student knows is not cheap!
Screenshot of some of the deals for San Luis Obispo on Groupon.com. Photo by Nina Martin.

Screenshot of some of the deals for San Luis Obispo on Groupon.com. Photo by Nina Martin.

So why not download the Groupon app? It’s free and will save you tons of money while giving you great experiences that will expand your life! Download this app to help you cross of all those fun things on your SLO Graduation Bucket List! You can find this app on the Apple App Store and Android Market.

Wildflower Triathlon

Wildflower Triathlon is one of the largest triathlon events in the world held at Lake San Antonio, about an hour away from San Luis Obispo. With thousands of eager student volunteers and competitors looking to have a good time, this event is one you must cross off your SLO Graduation Bucket List!

Wildflower has over 7,500 athletes and 30,000 spectators each year. It is one of the most difficult and well-known triathlons because of the particularly hilly and grueling courses.

In order to participate in the race participants just need to sign up online at the Tri-California Events website. Most students prefer to volunteer at the triathlon through the Cal Poly Wildflower Committee which you can also sign up for online at the Wildflower Committee website.

Brooke Felger, a member of the Wildflower Committee, says that being a part of the committee is one of the best decisions she has ever made. Through the committee she was given a lot of responsibility before and during the race.

We start planning for the next year with Tri-California as soon as the race ends,” Felger says. “There is a lot of work to do as far as getting the volunteers signed up, talking to sponsors and setting up the event.

There is so much work to do before the event but the payoff is worth it, Felger says. All my hard work and time spent is rewarded when I see how grateful the athletes are of all our help.

View of the starting platform for Wildflower at Lake San Antonio. Photo by Nina Martin.

View of the starting platform for Wildflower at Lake San Antonio. Photo by Nina Martin.

The race takes place on the first weekend of May every year, but volunteers don’t sign up until December the year before. Many Cal Poly clubs and organizations sign up and send big groups out to the lake each year.

Jillian Syftestad, a junior at Cal Poly, signed up for the Wildflower Committee with her WOW (Week of Welcome) group.

“I became really close with my WOW group so we decided to do Wildflower together,” Syftestad says. “It was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had.”

The best part was camping with my group, Syftestad says. It was so much fun because we got to know each other so well, as well as the other clubs camping around us.

Student volunteers camp at Beach City the weekend of the race where there is always a party, but facilities are limited so if you’re volunteering make sure you’re prepared.

Here are some things to be sure to bring:

  • lots of blankets
  • clothes for layering
  • sunscreen and shade
  • baby wipes, there are no showers
  • snacks

Participating in the race can be just as, if not more, rewarding as being a volunteer. There are three different courses offered including the Long Course, Olympic Course and Mountain Bike Course.

Competing in Wildflower is one of the highlights of my year, Matt Barksdale, a third time Wildflower athlete, says. This was my first year doing the Long Course and it was extremely difficult, but I felt so accomplished when I crossed the finish line.

Matt Barksdale crossing the finish line at Wildflower. Photo by Nina Martin.

Matt Barksdale crossing the finish line at Wildflower. Photo by Nina Martin.

“The volunteers are so encouraging and always motivated me to keep going even when I felt like giving up,” Barksdale says.

There is a reason Wildflower is such a famous triathlon. The demanding courses, determined athletes and excited volunteers make it an incredible event.

This video shows what all the hype is about!

If you haven’t signed up already you need to get on it! Cross this amazing event off your SLO Graduation Bucket List!

Big Falls

College students have got to be some of the hardest working people in our society. With the countless hours of studying, multiple cups of coffee per day and 15 pound backpacks full of books, a college student can build up an immense amount of stress. This is why a little fun on the weekends is more than essential in the life of a college student.

For college kids craving adventure, one of the best places to go in San Luis Obispo is Big Falls by Lopez Lake. The hike up to these awesome waterfalls and pools is about 20 to 45 minutes, depending on how far you want to go, and is fairly easy. Once you reach the pools there are a bunch of surrounding rocks that you can relax and lay out on.

Jenna Alvarado jumping off the small cliff at Big Falls. Photo by Nina Martin.

Jenna Alvarado jumping off the small cliff at Big Falls. Photo by Nina Martin.

If you are the really daring and adventurous type then you can climb up to the cliffs, ranging from 10 to 45 feet, and jump off into the deep pools of cool water below. This is  the main attraction for college kids to the falls. The rush of adrenaline after jumping releases all the built up stress from the previous week. It’s just a bonus that you look like a badass if you jump off the highest one.

Matt Barksdale jumping off the highest cliff at Big Falls. Photo by Nina Martin.

Matt Barksdale jumping off the highest cliff at Big Falls. Photo by Nina Martin.

The drive out to Big Falls is a little over an hour but make sure to bring a car that can manage going through shallow rivers. There are about five small rivers on the way out there, but this is part of what makes the trip so fun!

Other things to be sure to bring:

  • bathing suit
  • towels
  • good shoes for hiking
  • sunscreen
  • portable music player
  • and of course, beverages!

Big Falls is one of those places that not a lot of people know about so it’s never too crowded and there’s never a line to jump. This place has got to be crossed off your SLO Graduation Bucket List! Just be sure to watch our for Poison Oak!  

Three things you must do in San Luis Obispo!

We all have those weekends where we have no plans and find ourselves bored and looking for something fun to do. Well now you don’t need to look any further! Below is a Google map showing three exciting activities to do in San Luis Obispo, all of which you should cross off your SLO Graduation Bucket List! Included in the map are descriptions of Hearst Castle, Bishop Peak Trail and the Farmer’s Market. All these activities are either free or relatively cheap, but all are guaranteed to show you a fantastic time! So check them out and enjoy!

Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle. Photo by Nina Martin.

Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle. Photo by Nina Martin.

Roman Pool at Hearst Castle. Photo by Nina Martin.

Roman Pool at Hearst Castle. Photo by Nina Martin.

Cheyenne Sommo doing a backbend at the top of Bishop Peak. Photo by Nina Martin. Edited with Instagram.

Cheyenne Sommo doing a backbend at the top of Bishop Peak. Photo by Nina Martin. Edited with Instagram.