Wednesday, February 22, 2012

National Parks

This week's hodgepodge had a few questions that I didn't have any answers to so I just picked one to write about.

Do you make it a point to visit State/National Parks when you travel or even in your own hometown? What's your favorite?

National parks...that's what we do. I think I've been to almost all of the major ones (Rocky Mountain, Yellowstone, Tetons, Glacier, Great Smokey Mountian, Acadia, Olympic, Redwoods. Grand Canyon). The two biggies left are Yosemite and Denali. We'll get Denali done this summer and Yosemite will probably be in the next five years.

So what's my favorite? They are all so different. The first one is probably my favorite for various reasons: Rocky Mountain. I was pregnant and it was the first real vacation Dan and I took where we weren't seeing family. We've been back a couple of times and it still is beautiful.

Olympic was cool because it looked like a scary movie set with all the moss hanging everywhere and it rained which always we laugh at because of course it rained...its a rain forest.

Grand Canyon we were at in the winter and there was snow all around. Glacier was foggy so we didn't see much...may have to go back there.

Yellowstone/Tetons were very nice. We've been there a couple of times and Dan has fallen in love with Tetons. The wildlife is great in late May/early June. The buffalo were so funny; they were jumping (I had never seen anything like that before and we have buffalo everywhere here).

My least favorite was Great Smokey Mountain. We found it covered in graffiti, trash and just a general sense of lack of respect from the people visiting. Perhaps it was because we had been in the big mountains and these seemed small. Perhaps it was just an East Coast bias that we have and the touristic nature of surrounding cities. I know many people who love it but it isn't for us.

What I'm looking forward to: DENALI!!!!! I so hope that we have clear weather so we can see Mount McKinley and we see lots of wildlife. I can say that I've seen most of what they have there in national parks already except for the grizzly. The bears at Yellowstone were much smaller. We plan on doing a flight over Denali and hopefully the mountain too. I will have so many pictures it will be hard to narrow them down. But oh what fun that will be.

None of these pictures are mine but aren't they beautiful! 


  1. I love National Parks too, and Rocky is my fav because I love all things Colorado! Do you have your kids participate in the Junior Ranger Program? It's a great way to enhance the experience for the kiddos and they get a badge at the end. We also have a passport for my son and love to stamp in the cancellations.

  2. Oops, I just looked at your profile and saw your daughter is already grown. Another great park you should add is Zion National Park in Utah. Also in close proximity to it is Cedar Breaks NM, Bryce Canyon National Park, and Pipespring NM so you could make a big trip out of it!

  3. I grew up just 25 miles from Yellowstone, and visited it many times. I still love going back. This summer I am going to tour Olympic Natl park.

  4. We love the National Parks too and are hoping to visit more of them soon.

    We loved the Grand Canyon!

  5. National Parks are one of the very best things about the US. Now that I'm far away, I miss them even more.