Colorado, Colorado Hikes, Colorado Summits, Rocky Mountain National Park, US National Parks

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Flattop Mountain and Hallett Peak

It was a long time coming, but 2021 was the year Chelsea and I finally stood atop Hallett Peak! I don’t remember when we originally decided we wanted to do this hike, but it was a while ago. The first time we made plans for it, Chelsea had to cancel. The second time, I was… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Flattop Mountain and Hallett Peak

Montana, US National Parks

Montana road trip, part IV: cowboys, old cars, & the prison museum

Next up on our Montana history tour: Deer Lodge, a small town with a surprising amount of history! We arrived mid-morning and our first stop was Grant-Kohrs National Historic Site. This is an old cattle ranch that’s still semi-active. They have horses and cattle on site and park workers give tours, talks, and demonstrations of… Continue reading Montana road trip, part IV: cowboys, old cars, & the prison museum

Montana, US National Parks

Montana road trip, part II: Fort Benton & the Missouri River Breaks

If you know me – or you’ve been following this blog for a while – you know I’m a planner. Some might say I’m an overplanner. I usually have a lengthy and well-researched list of things to do at each destination. Such was not the case for these first couple days of my mom’s and… Continue reading Montana road trip, part II: Fort Benton & the Missouri River Breaks

Colorado, Colorado Hikes, Rocky Mountain National Park, US National Parks

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Sandbeach Lake

In Colorado, one can find sand in the most unexpected and/or unusual locations. Much like the aftermath of a day at the beach. Case in point: Great Sand Dunes National Park. Case in point #2: Sandbeach Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park. The trail to Sandbeach Lake departs from the parking area immediately to the… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Sandbeach Lake

Southwestern US, US National Parks

Riding the rapids in Split Mountain Canyon – Dinosaur National Monument, Utah

After spending the other days of our long weekend exploring Dinosaur National Monument from above, a guided whitewater rafting expedition now afforded us the chance to see the Utah side of the monument from below. Our one-day trip took us along 9 miles (14.5 km) of the Green River through Split Mountain Canyon. The geology… Continue reading Riding the rapids in Split Mountain Canyon – Dinosaur National Monument, Utah

Colorado, Colorado Destinations, Colorado Hikes, Southwestern US, US National Parks

Canyon Country – Dinosaur National Monument, Colorado

By far, most people who visit Dinosaur go to the Utah half of the monument. It’s the side with the dinosaur bones for which the monument is most famous. It’s also the more accessible part of the monument, with developed campgrounds and easy river access. However… what the Colorado half lacks in dinosaur fossils, it… Continue reading Canyon Country – Dinosaur National Monument, Colorado

Colorado, US National Parks

The Land of Prehistoric History – Dinosaur National Monument, Utah

(Gold star to anyone who can figure out the random inspiration for the title of this post. Hint: it came from the TV show I was bingeing at the time I sat down to write this.) If you’ve ever heard of Dinosaur National Monument, you probably specifically heard about the dinosaur quarry… a building that… Continue reading The Land of Prehistoric History – Dinosaur National Monument, Utah

Midwestern US, US National Parks

The Devil’s Corkscrew – Agate Fossil Beds National Monument, Nebraska

After exploring Scotts Bluff and learning the history of the Oregon Trail, Chelsea and I continued north to our next stop: Agate Fossil Beds National Monument. Here, we would learn about a very different time in Nebraska's history. With my semester wrapping up just a couple days prior to our departure, I hadn’t really had… Continue reading The Devil’s Corkscrew – Agate Fossil Beds National Monument, Nebraska

Midwestern US, US National Parks

Landmark on the Oregon Trail – Scotts Bluff National Monument, Nebraska

Back in May, Chelsea and I headed to the Dakotas for a long weekend to do some highpointing. Since we were driving all the way up there, we decided to take advantage of the opportunity to detour through Nebraska along the way and visit some national monuments in the western part of the state. Our… Continue reading Landmark on the Oregon Trail – Scotts Bluff National Monument, Nebraska

Colorado, Rocky Mountain National Park, US National Parks

Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Estes Cone

Estes Cone was not plan A for Chelsea and me on this particular weekend. But April and May in Colorado are part of what we Coloradans call the “spring of deception.” No matter how warm and sunny it is, no matter how many days in a row the nice weather endures, make no mistake: it's… Continue reading Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes: Estes Cone