Tag Archives: California

May 11, 2015 Hamilton Lakes, High Sierra Trail, Sequoia National Park.

Photo Gallery: 15 Nicest Backcountry Campsites I’ve Hiked Past

In Backpacking, Family Adventures, Hiking, National Park Adventures   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   1 Comment

By Michael Lanza

It is one of those unfortunate inevitabilities of life, like death and taxes: Occasionally on backpacking trips you will hike past one of the most sublime patches of wilderness real estate you have ever laid eyes on, a spot so idyllic you can already see your tent pitched there and you standing outside it, warm mug in your hands, watching a glorious sunset. But it’s early and your plan entails hiking farther before you stop for the day—not camping there. Or even worse, you are looking for a campsite, but someone else has already occupied this little corner of Heaven. Continue reading →

April 2, 2015 John Muir Trail view overlooking the Cathedral Range, Yosemite National Park.

Ask Me: Tips On Backpacking Glacier National Park and the John Muir Trail

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[Note: I recently received these similar questions from two different readers]

Michael,

I wrote you last year about the Teton Crest Trail and my buddies and I completed it back in July. It was amazing. We are starting to plan our next backcountry trip and were thinking about Glacier National Park. What do you recommend for a 5- to 6-day, 35- to 50-mile trip in GNP? What about on the John Muir Trail? We are considering both. Thanks for the info, always helpful.

Justin Continue reading →

March 26, 2015 Grand Ronde River, Oregon.

Ask Me: Can You Recommend Rafting Outfitters and Trips?

In Ask Me, Family Adventures, National Park Adventures, Paddling   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment

Hi Michael,

I just found your blog today after starting my research for a summer guided rafting tour for families. In my next life I’d like to come back as one of your offspring! My husband would like to take our eager son on a guided, overnight rafting trip this summer to celebrate his 10th birthday: father-son trip, but someone else does the heavy lifting so dad and son can focus on enjoyment of the river, campfires and overall one-on-one time. We live in the Bay Area but our son is keen to travel for this trip—Idaho, Utah, Oregon, or Colorado, to name a few suggestions. Can you point us toward some well-regarded guiding companies and provide any insight to consider when we comparison shop?

Kind regards,
Catherine
Lafayette, CA

Continue reading →

March 9, 2015 A hiker on "The Visor" on the summit of Half Dome, Yosemite National Park.

Ask Me: Hiking Yosemite’s Half Dome

In Ask Me, Backpacking, Hiking, National Park Adventures   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   1 Comment

Hi Michael!

I contacted you a while back about hiking and backpacking with my toddler. Your advice was amazing and my two-year-old is getting better and better when it comes to distance. He is walking two miles straight and absolutely loves nature. We recently hiked the Mist Trail in Yosemite to the top of Vernal Fall and we all enjoyed it—the best hike we have ever done so far. Now I am contacting you because my husband and I decided we wanted to make Half Dome our next year’s challenge. As soon as I saw the Half Dome from the Glacier Point I knew I wanted to be on the top of that rock. It has always been in my bucket list, but I think I am ready to check that off. I don’t know if you have done that climb or not, but wanted to ask about tips for a long trip (we plan on making it a three-day backpacking trip), gear and “training.” Continue reading →

March 3, 2015 Wonderland of Rocks, Joshua Tree National Park.

One Photo, One Story: Exploring Joshua Tree National Park

In Hiking, National Park Adventures   |   Tagged , ,   |   2 Comments

By Michael Lanza

On a recent, balmy morning in the sprawling and primordial Wonderland of Rocks area of Joshua Tree National Park, my friend David Ports and I had just climbed a route called Mental Physics when I captured this photo of him scrambling down through a maze of boulders below the climb, overlooking a signature Joshua Tree landscape of granite monoliths. Continue reading →

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