Colorado, Colorado Destinations, Southwestern US, US National Parks

Colorado National Monument

I was sorting through some old posts on here recently and stumbled across this one from a few years ago about my 2010 trip to Colorado National Monument. I imagine many of you can relate to the cringey feeling you get when you read something you wrote so many years ago. And, of course, the… Continue reading Colorado National Monument

Southwestern US

A waterfall in the desert – Escalante National Monument, Utah

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is a hidden gem. Spanning two million acres of mostly undeveloped wilderness, this national monument preserves a vast expanse of red rock desert in southern Utah. The monument is part of the Grand Staircase… an enormous span of rock layers that represent nearly two billion years of geologic history. These layers… Continue reading A waterfall in the desert – Escalante National Monument, Utah

Southwestern US, US National Parks

Big River of the North – Rio Grande del Norte National Monument, New Mexico

With one day remaining of our Labor Day weekend getaway to Taos, we headed out of town to the west. Today, instead of climbing to the highest point, we would be descending to the lowest elevation area in the Taos Valley region: the gorge cut by the Rio Grande. Actually, we’d be descending and then… Continue reading Big River of the North – Rio Grande del Norte National Monument, New Mexico

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

Southwestern US, US National Parks

In the crater of a volcano – Capulin Volcano National Monument, New Mexico

Pat has been wanting to visit New Mexico since the day we arrived in Colorado. He didn’t really know anything about the state and, as a result, I think there was an aura of mystery surrounding it. I have to admit, I see his point; New Mexico rarely seems to be the topic of any… Continue reading In the crater of a volcano – Capulin Volcano National Monument, New Mexico

Colorado, Colorado Destinations, Colorado Hikes, US National Parks

Shadows of the Past – Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument, Colorado

When I mention giant redwood trees, Sequoia National Park and California are probably two of the first places that come to mind. But if I’d mentioned giant redwood trees about 34 million years ago, you’d most likely be thinking of Colorado instead! Thirty-four million years ago, what is now the Florissant Valley in the Rocky… Continue reading Shadows of the Past – Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument, Colorado