Rafting the Lower Youghiogheny with White Water Adventurers, Inc.

Ohiopyle State Park is Pittsburgh's nature hub. There are so many options to get out and explore, be it for hiking, outdoor adventure activities, and more. But of those, there is none that we love more than white water rafting in the Laurel Highlands.

We're no stranger to rafting the Middle Youghiogheny's Class I and II rapids (an easy trip out on the water), but what we really love is getting out on the Lower Youghiogheny's Class III and IV rapids for some excellent white water!

Recently, I was invited back down to the Laurel Highlands to be a guest of White Water Adventurers, Inc. in order to check out their new Taste of the Yough tour and catch some white water in a day trip from Pittsburgh. In this one, I wanted to share a bit more about what the experience is like. 

Note: Select photos and video clips in this article were provided courtesy of White Water Adventurers, Inc. I was joined on the outing with I've Been Bit travel blog and the Laurel Highland's Visitor Bureau. (Angie sadly missed this one.)

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Enjoying Camp Life at Bear Run Campground Near Moraine State Park

Camp life near Pittsburgh is a cherished thing. Everyone knows someone with a camper, and virtually every camp is about an hour away from home (at least, every camp we've ever heard of through friends and acquaintances).

We, unfortunately, never got to experience camp life until only recently, and our first outing brought us to Bear Run Campground near Moraine State Park as guests of the Butler County Visitor's Bureau. After spending two days at the property, we now fully understand why camp life is so popular!

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The Compass Inn Museum Preserves the 1800s in the Laurel Highlands

You may know a lot of what life was like during the early days of Pittsburgh's history thanks to the forts found nearby and famous battles that took place leading up to the Revolutionary War.

But the period after the war quiets down a fair bit (apart from the brief Whiskey Rebellion) until a few decades later due to the War of 1812. This triggered a rapid increase in iron production, which subsequently became the steel industry, and ultimately modern Pittsburgh as we know it.

One spot in the Laurel Highlands, the Compass Inn Museum, captures the history from this rather calm period, around the turn of the 19th century, and showcases what life was like for those living in (and more appropriately, passing through) southwest Pennsylvania around this time!

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Rosé All Day Offers Up an Array of Pink Libations to Sample

Rose All Day is a summer festival in Pittsburgh that features all things rose – ciders, beers, wines, and cocktails from dozens of vendors were featured in the inaugural event in August 2019.

With a mix of local and national wineries and breweries, an appropriately-sized venue for the crowd, minimal lines for drinks, and a good mix of non-alcohol vendors including food trucks and shopping, we can see this festival taking hold and becoming even bigger and better in the years to come.

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SYN Taqueria + Pizzeria Review – Build-Your-Own Style in East Liberty

SYN Taqueria + Pizzeria in East Liberty is a build-your-own pizza and taco restaurant at the neighborhood border of East Liberty and Friendship. Why no one has thought of this combination before is a mystery- tacos and pizza as a combo are a match made in heaven.  

We were invited to check this one out shortly after opening in July 2019, and share a bit about our meal including a few build-your-own tacos, pre-made pizza selections, and more in this one!

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Descending into the Earth at the Laurel Caverns in the Laurel Highlands

We are big fans of caves, and in southwest Pennsylvania, our options to go underground are a bit limited.

Closer to the city it is much easier to find an old coal mine to go deep into (like at the Tour-Ed Mine and Museum) than it is to find a cave. But for those who want to make the drive in order to explore a gorgeous cave system (and the largest cave in Pennsylvania), the 90 minute trip to the Laurel Caverns in the southern Laurel Highlands is for you!

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The Headkeeper Review – A Small Plate Tapas in Greensburg

The Headkeeper is a popular tapas bar located in Greensburg, PA- just about an hour east of downtown Pittsburgh.

The restaurant is acclaimed for its small plates/tapas menu, but also comes along with a large seating area (including an impressive outdoor space), a modest draft list, over 600 bottles of beer available in cans/bottles, and a lot more!

I visited this one while exploring the area with Westmoreland Heritage, and share some thoughts on our meal and the restaurant as a whole in this one!

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Bridges & Bourbon is Elevating Pittsburgh’s Craft Cocktail Scene

Bridges & Bourbon opened in Pittsburgh's Cultural District in June 2019 and was a much-awaited cocktail bar due to their strong lead-up on social media.

The bar focuses on high-end cocktails with some rather interesting flair and novelties thrown into the mix as well, making it rather unique in Pittsburgh's cocktail bar scene!

We were guests of Bridges & Bourbon for a media preview event and wanted to share some of the great cocktails we tried in this one!

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Being Transported to the Amalfi Coast at Vallozzi’s Festa di Limoncello

The kickoff of summer in Pittsburgh is marked by many events, be it through the traditional solstice or simply numerous outdoor experiences.

One relatively new event is a smaller one, but focuses on all things limoncello and ‘cello spirits at Vallozzi's. This is the Festa di Limoncello, and is designed to kick off summer with a trip to the Amalfi coast of Italy.

We were guest of Vallozzi's for this one in 2019, and share what the event is like below!

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Mission Mahi Review – A Food Truck Turned Restaurant in Cranberry

Mission Mahi started off as a food truck serving loaded “tacos” to hungry Pittsburghers. After driving the truck around the city for several years, they expanded to a dedicated restaurant in Cranberry where they now sling their staples in addition to the roaming truck.

But as it turns out, the mission part of Mission Mahi is an incredible story in its own right- one I learned more about when visiting the restaurant for a trusty meal.

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