Category Archives: Hiking
My husband and I live in Missoula with our two boys, ages three and five. We are spending three nights in Yellowstone over Mother’s Day weekend, and it will be our kids’ first visit. Two questions: Any particular Y’stone books you recommend for kids? Also, this is a bit of a silly question, but are there any sites or activities that were unexpectedly or just especially fun? Continue reading →
Seeing wildflowers blooming in the backcountry always brings a smile. They enliven a landscape. Blooming only briefly, they signal our serendipitous timing. And beautiful wildflowers sure can make a photograph pop.
I’ve assembled this slideshow of my favorite wildflower photos, from places like Mt. Rainier, the Tetons, Glacier, Zion, the North Cascades, Joshua Tree, Alaska’s Glacier Bay, the Olympic Mountains, Oregon’s Eagle Cap Wilderness, New Hampshire’s Presidential Range and Carter Range, and Idaho’s Sawtooths, Smoky Mountains, City of Rocks National Reserve and Castle Rocks State Park. I’ve included photos from as far off as Norway’s Jotunheimen National Park and as close to my home as the Boise Foothills. The lead photo above shows Herb Robert on the Oregon side of the Columbia Gorge; other photos in this gallery are from Dog Mountain on the Washington side of the gorge, which puts on one of the best wildflower displays you’ll see anywhere every May and June. Continue reading →
Hearing the thunderous roar and walking through the rain of mist coming from some of North America’s biggest and most iconic waterfalls in Yosemite Valley. Seeing mountain goats, bighorn sheep, and one (fortunately unaggressive) sow grizzly bear with cubs in Glacier National Park—as well as incredible mountain scenery almost every step of the way. Backpacking through a landscape of multi-colored canyon walls and wildly sculpted sandstone monoliths in Zion National Park. Paddling a sea kayak past seals in Alaska’s Glacier Bay, while watching a mile-wide glacier with a snout 200 feet tall explosively calve bus-size chunks of itself into the sea. And backpacking through vast fields of wildflowers below jagged peaks on one of the country’s premier multi-day hikes, the Teton Crest Trail. Continue reading →
Below a deep gash in a 50-foot-tall cliff of golden sandstone, shaded from the low, late-afternoon sun of early spring, I scramble up a steep slab using in-cut holds carved into the soft rock. Ten or 12 feet off the ground, I pull myself over the lip of a ledge to peer into a narrow cut in the earth, a hidden geologic oddity that lures in a certain type of hiker for one reason: because it’s barely wide enough for humans to squeeze through. And I have to smile.
I’m grinning first of all because I’ve found just what we had hoped to see. Water sometimes pools in a couple of potholes near the mouth of this slot canyon, and the air temperature today feels a little too cool to soak ourselves in cold water. Today, though, the sandy-bottomed, giant stone teacups are dry. But secondly, touching me on a more personal level, this canyon’s entrance looks much as I remember it from the first time I hiked through here, 16 years ago this month.
In less than two hours, my impression of this place will be almost completely remade. Continue reading →
I am a Scout Leader in Anchorage, Alaska. I have been having a difficult time convincing other leaders and parents to allow their kids to participate in some sort of adventurous outdoor activity besides walking through town or at an established campsite but I haven’t had much success doing so. Continue reading →