A Walk in the woods at Muir Woods National Monument

Giant Coastal Redwoods rise up around me.  I stand in awe that less than 30 minutes ago I was standing among the skyscrapers of San Francisco. A short drive across the Golden Gate Bridge is a wilderness oasis near one of the US’s largest cities in the most populous state.  These coastal redwoods aren’t a hidden.  They stand proudly in the Muir Woods National Monument. Continue Reading . . .

The United States’ National Parks are Under Attack

I am a national park junkie in every sense of the word.  I have been to 41 National Parks and over 150 of the other National Park units.  My love of the national park system came at an early age.  I was to my first national park before I was a year old.  It is no secret that I love our national parks.  I am forever thankful for the efforts of early environmentalists.  Their tireless work saved many of these magnificent places from destruction.  The U.S. National Park system is often called ‘America’s Best Idea.’  I firmly believe this statement.  Over the last couple of years, I have realized out park system is under attack. Continue Reading . . .

Recipe for Disaster in North Cascades National Park

Kayla and I emerge from the forest and arrive at my car. We look at each other. Joe still hadn’t caught up with us. I unlock my car and pull out my phone. Kayla keeps glancing at the trailhead as I turn my phone on. Finally, it turns on. No signal, that isn’t a surprise given we are in the North Cascades Mountains in North Cascade National Park in northern Washington. Kayla looks at her watch. “It’s 5:30,” she states. “Sunset isn’t until at least 9,” I respond. We have over three hours of sunlight. “He should have realized we were going to make it to the top by now, right,” her voice wobbles. I hesitate for a moment, but respond, “Yea, he should have caught us on the way down.” With that statement, the nagging feeling that I have had the whole way down comes back. Continue Reading . . .

My No Plan Plan failed in Yosemite National Park

I stare at the campsite full sign.  This is the last open campsite in Yosemite National Park, California. My travel without a plan plan just failed.  I am still in shock.  This has never happened before and I was sort of at a loss for what to do.  I could usually find a walk up campsite when I arrived in a National Park.  It was the middle of the week during  late October and I wasn’t expecting camping to be an issue. Continue Reading . . .

Spotlight Thursday – Meerkat Manor (or Round-Tailed Sround Squirrel Manor) of Arizona


Every Thursday, I will be posting a photo from my travels and a spotlight on the location. Today’s Spotlight Thursday is of the .  I took this photo is of a pair of round-tailed ground squirrel from my cross-country US road trips.  On my way from Tennessee to Colorado, I stopped and spent a couple of days in Saguaro National Park.  This park is around Tuscon, Arizona.  The park has two regions split by the city of Tuscon.  I spent time in both the Rincon Mountain District (Saguaro Park East) and Tucson Mountain District (Saguaro Park West). Continue Reading . . .