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Published: April 17th 2008
I’m retroactively blogging a trip my brother and I took around to some of the National Parks in the US in August of 2005. I wanted to put some information out about these amazing places, as they are, in my opinion, the highlights of the US.
The drive from Moab to Rocky Mountain National Park, north of Boulder Colorado, takes you straight through the heart of the Rockies, and some of the highest peaks in the continental U.S. Driving through the park you constantly see huge herds of elk, some beautiful birds, and the occasional moose. We did a few small trails that were fairly unremarkable the first day, but on the second day we ended our month long trip through the national parks of the U.S. with a fifteen mile extravaganza. We covered an amazing amount of ground, hiking up to see a high altitude glacier and it’s lake in the morning. Descending half the altitude we gained, then turning back up a different valley and regaining the entire amount we had just gone down. We probably could have kept climbing and just taken the mountain goat paths over the ridges, but decided it might be better to stick
Tiny glacier and its lake
Not sure how it qualifies as a glacier anymore, but I bet it used to be more impressive.
to the paths we are sure of. All the hiking finally caught up to me, and the final thousand feet down the slopes were really hard on my knees. I came limping across the finish line and was glad to say that the hiking was done.
My brother and I went back to our campsite to prepare super, but didn’t have the energy to cook for ourselves. We decided to head out of the park and see what we could scrounge up. As we were driving through the local town, we had a craving for Mexican food; but not for legitimate Mexican food, for horrible, greasy, Americanized, processed, fatty food. We headed straight for the Taco Bell. It was the most disgusting feast ever; my brother and I combined for a twenty-five dollar meal at T-Bell, with each of us return for seconds and thirds. It was horrible, but I’m still proud of that meal.
The last night of the trip, we drove down to my college roommate’s parent’s house in downtown Denver, and spent the night in a beautiful house and ate our first home cooked meal in a month. We both took one of the longest
Elk in the mountain meadows
The front one has a tag around its neck for tracking purposes. Kind of sad looking...
showers of our lives getting the past few weeks grime off our backs and eating one of the best tasting steaks of my life. The next day we got up early and started on our fourteen-hour drive back to the Midwest.
All in all, I would say that the National Parks we visited were some of the most beautiful places the U.S. has to offer. If you are looking at going out to the U.S., I would strongly encourage you to spend several days in Zion National Park if you are in the southwest or any part of Idaho or Montana if you are in the north. It is a hard country to travel if you don’t have a car. But, after that initial investment, take your tent and a portable stove and you can do it on the cheap pretty easily.
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