When you find your way up to the glorious summit of the Beehive Trail in Acadia National Park, Maine, realize that a million years ago it was under 10,000 ft of water which explains a lot about the formations. Most of the exposed surfaces are smooth and the fissures have been gracefully carved by a millennia of rushing Atlantic tides.
What does a 39-day American road trip of 7,600 miles look like? The call to go to Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park and the Black Hills of South Dakota and everywhere in between was too loud to be denied. I wrote recently about the "how" of the trip, so now I'd like to include you in on the details of Part I - North Carolina to Kansas - where we camped, places we stopped, and things we saw. Hope you enjoy the ride and let it inspire you to make your own road trip adventure!
Our family road trip across South Dakota remains a favorite vacation. South Dakota offers outdoor beauty from the vast prairies to the rolling Black Hills as well as nonstop wildlife viewing. From stunning state parks to awe-inspiring national parks, South Dakota should be on everyone’s must-see destinations.
If you've spent any time planning a vacation in Yellowstone National Park, you'll realize that it is too massive to take in all at once. With over 400 miles of paved roads, our camping strategy was to break the park into three sections and build an itinerary for each. Madison Campground, near the West Yellowstone entrance, served as our basecamp to explore the awe-inspiring thermal area of Yellowstone National Park.
April 18, 2020
The dramatic landscapes of the secluded South Dakota Badlands National Park serve as a backdrop of one of the most unearthly camping adventures you might ever experience. The prairie region's steep canyons and towering spires, its remoteness and geologic formations, all make this an extremely rewarding – and challenging – terrain to explore.
October 3, 2018
Camping at Skidaway Island State Park is just the beginning of a great coastal Georgia vacation. If you can manage to pull yourselves away from camp, Skidaway Island State Park offers convenient access to romantic downtown Savannah, the quaint beach town of Tybee Island, two lovely lighthouses, a historic military fort, easy nature hikes, boating, and fishing.
June 3, 2019
Nestled in the crook of the far western reach of North Carolina, we stopped at Deep Creek Campground in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as a convenient one-night camping and hiking stopover on the way to Cloudland Canyon State Park, Georgia. Even though we only stayed a day, believe us when we say that you could easily make Deep Creek your basecamp and cook up a complete Smoky Mountain holiday without ever having to go any further.
May 29, 2019
The first inhabitants, the Cherokees, called this mountain paradise "Shaconage" or "The place of the blue smoke." Haze from the abundant trees emitting volumes of water vapor into the air creates this famous smoke for which the Smokies are known and named. To experience the beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains, we chose Cades Cove Campground for our camping and hiking base.
October 20, 2019
Everything you've ever heard about the iconic Blue Ridge Parkway is only made better with the turn of the seasons. October, with its cooler temperatures and lower humidity, ratchets up the vibrance of an already beautiful time of the year for camping and hiking in western North Carolina's Julian Price Campground.
October 21, 2018
Nestled at the base of Mount Mitchell and close to the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina, Black Mountain Campground in Pisgah National Forest serves as a great camping base to explore the area with plenty of on-site adventures.
September 28, 2018
Looking for the best campground in Custer State Park, South Dakota? Reserve early and pitch your tent in six of the most charming creekside campsites. Not all of the nine campgrounds in the 71,000 acres of Custer State Park are created equal, and the same can be said of the sites in Grace Coolidge Campground.
November 6, 2018
Looking for pirates, shipwrecks, massive sand dunes, lighthouses, and, oh, by-the-way, just a little bit of history that changed the world? Only a short hop from your beachfront campsite at the Oregon Inlet Campground on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.
September 28, 2018
There is a good reason that the Avalanche Peak Trail makes the short list of must do hikes on a visit to Yellowstone National Park. Situated on the eastern border of Yellowstone, the Avalanche Peak Trail is a deceptively short 5-mile roundtrip hike that'll have you forever asking first about elevation gain rather than distance.
February 16, 2019
A whirlwind of 15 stops in America's 14th state that will give you a taste of the unique culture, rich history, and natural beauty of the grand state of Vermont. Prepare yourself to be captivated by this incredibly diverse state with 15 best places to visit and to wish you could call the Green Mountain State home.