Hearst Castle, a California State Historical Monument

We love to be active and enjoy the outdoors, but hiking is not necessarily the activity of choice when we get together with grandparents. No problem, there are plenty of outdoor activities we can all enjoy. One of our favorite excursions that we took with my in-laws was a trip to San Simeon on the central … More Hearst Castle, a California State Historical Monument

How About Celebrating Thanksgiving at the Grand Canyon?

I know it’s kind of early to be thinking about Thanksgiving. I mean, we still have our holiday memories still lingering around in our heads. But, if I may, I wanted to plant a tiny seed, an idea to file away for the future. How about celebrating Thanksgiving at the Grand Canyon with your family? … More How About Celebrating Thanksgiving at the Grand Canyon?

How to Navigate a National Park Visit During the Holidays

I am not an expert on travel or national parks by any means, but having traveled around the holidays for the last 4 years, I wanted to share an observation that we made. That is, the days before the major holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas, the parks are very sparse. Like ‘everyone is busy getting ready for the holidays so no one … More How to Navigate a National Park Visit During the Holidays

Death Valley (and Star Wars) in December, part 4

Day 4: Exploring the area south of Furnace Creek Location: Death Valley National Park Points of Interest: Artist’s Drive, Golden Canyon, Badwater Basin, Zabriskie Point Hike: Golden Canyon (1 mile, one-way, up to Red Cathedral Junction, start at Golden Canyon parking area) Lodging: Furnace Creek Inn Trip Date: December 2015 Final part of the Death … More Death Valley (and Star Wars) in December, part 4

Death Valley in December (Christmas Eve), part 3

Day 3: Mesquite Springs campground to Furnace Creek Inn Location: Death Valley National Park Points of Interest: Mesquite Springs campground, Mesquite Sand Dunes Campground: Mesquite Springs Campground, $12/night, first come first serve Hike: Mesquite Sand Dunes to highest dune (about 1 mile, one way) Lodging: Furnace Creek Inn Trip Date: December 2015 When I told … More Death Valley in December (Christmas Eve), part 3

Death Valley in December, part 2

Day 2: Furnace Creek to Mesquite Springs Campground (north of Furnace Creek) Location: Death Valley National Park Points of Interest: Harmony Borax Works Museum, Salt Creek, Ubehebe Crater Campground: Mesquite Springs Campground Hike: Salt Creek boardwalk (0.8 mile loop trail on boardwalk) Trip Date: December 2015 After putting a cap on how many pictures of this roadrunner … More Death Valley in December, part 2

Salt Point State Park

Location: Salt Rock State Park, California (off of Hwy 1, about 90 miles north of San Francisco) Campground: Lower Woodside campground, $35/night (first come first serve during non peak season, reserveamerica.com up to 7 months in advance during peak season May-Sept) Hike: Prairie loop trail (4 miles) Trip Date: November 2015 We love to travel right before … More Salt Point State Park