Tag Archives: Everglades National Park

January 25, 2015 Mangrove tunnel, East River, Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park, Florida.

Photo Gallery: Paddling the Everglades

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By Michael Lanza

I confess: Everglades National Park was not near the top of my adventure to-do list before I went there the first time, during an all-day layover in Miami waiting for a flight to Chile to trek in Patagonia. After a short hike in the park, I knew I had to return for a longer visit with my kids. My family spent our first day there paddling through a series of long mangrove tunnels on the East River, watching scores of exotic birds fly just overhead: snowy egrets, white ibises, black anhingas, tri-colored herons, brown pelicans, great blue herons (everything seems to have a color in its name). And we saw alligators—several of them, up to 12 feet long—floated listlessly on the river’s surface. Continue reading →

January 19, 2015 Jacob Hamblin Arch, Coyote Gulch, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah.

10 Tips For Keeping Kids Happy and Safe Outdoors

In Backpacking, Family Adventures, Hiking, National Park Adventures, Paddling, Skiing, Skills   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   7 Comments

By Michael Lanza

Some people might say my wife and I are bad parents. We’ve repeatedly and deliberately placed our kids—at young ages—in risky situations. And I’m not talking about letting them ride their bikes without wearing helmets (which, admittedly, would be insane) or frequently taking them to McDonald’s (and what kind of parent would do that?!).

I’m talking about setting out with seven- and four-year-old kids to cross-country ski through a snowstorm for hours to a backcountry yurt. Tying a six-year-old into a rope and letting him or her rock climb a cliff. Rappelling into slot canyons. Backpacking into the remotest and most rugged wildernesses in the contiguous United States, from the Grand Canyon to the Tetons to Glacier National Park. Continue reading →

January 13, 2015 Cross-country skiing the Rim Trail, Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, Yellowstone National Park.

Photo Gallery: 11 National Parks, One Year

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By Michael Lanza

Backpacking in the Grand Canyon, Glacier, Mount Rainier, Rocky Mountain, North Cascades, and Olympic national parks. Hiking to Yosemite’s waterfalls. Paddling the Everglades and sea kayaking Glacier Bay. Rock climbing in Joshua Tree, and cross-country skiing in Yellowstone (lead photo, at top). In one magical year, we took 11 national park adventures with our kids, sharing experiences that expanded their understanding of their world, times filled with joy and wonder. Continue reading →

December 17, 2014 Crater rim, Mount St. Helens.

My Top 10 Family Adventures

In Backpacking, Family Adventures, Hiking, National Park Adventures, Paddling, Skiing   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   7 Comments

By Michael Lanza

How many outdoor trips do you have on the calendar for 2015 already? I have four, with others in active planning stages. For me, this is the time of year for pulling out maps and guidebooks and poring over my list of adventures I want to take. My document slugged “Trip Ideas” is now 15,234 words long, and growing. I need to get busy—and so do you. To help you out with ideas and inspiration for next year, here are my Top 10 Family Adventures at The Big Outside, ranging from climbing Mount St. Helens to backpacking in the Grand Canyon and cross-country skiing in Yellowstone. Continue reading →

April 23, 2014 Backpackers on Clouds Rest, Yosemite National Park.

Photo Gallery: Celebrating National Parks Week

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By Michael Lanza

Are you planning to visit a national park this week or this year? National Parks Week reminds me of writer Wallace Stegner’s famous quote: “National parks are the best idea we ever had. Absolutely American, absolutely democratic, they reflect us at our best rather than our worst.” Continue reading →

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