3 Days of Wonder and Nostalgia in New England’s Only National Park
New England, and certainly Acadia National Park, has always held a special place in my heart. I grew up in coastal New Hampshire and some of my fondest childhood memories center around family trips to the park. It was here, my brother and I took our first flight, soaring silently above the rounded mountains of Mt. Desert Island in a glider, and to this day, a clock hangs in my parents house with a photo of my brother, myself and our cousins atop Cadillac Mountain from a trip in the early 90’s. It was here too, that I took Bryn for her first trip to New England, before we were even dating, now 20 years ago, and here we returned two years later as part of our honeymoon. And so, after a far-too-long time away, we returned again this summer to Acadia to introduce our own children to a park that holds so many of our treasured memories.
A Park Frozen in Time, Nestled in the Heart of Urban Ohio
As we have come to discover as we’ve embarked on a few of these National Park survey trip over the years, there never seems to be quite enough time. Of course, this is a product of how we plan our road trips – with a desire to sample as many parks as possible – and more often than not it leaves us with hopes of revisiting these parks on an extended or dedicated trip in the future. Such was certainly the case with Cuyahoga Valley National Park.
Finding Quiet in the Smoky Mountains on a Very Busy 4th of July Weekend
So… When we were planning our trip early this year, we knew many of the parks we visited can be busy during the summer, and while we planned around much of the busyness by visiting the most popular parks during mid-week, we weren’t so lucky with the Smoky Mountains. While our first park of the trip, Mammoth Caves, was relatively quiet, The Smokey Mountains were quite the opposite. Yet even so, the park is big by eastern standards and we were able to find spots of quiet respite along the way.
Exploring the largest cave system in the world and the park above it
This summer, we had the great privilege of escaping the sweltering Florida heat and spending five weeks on the road, photographing most of the national parks east of the Mississippi, as well as a half dozen or so other National Park Service monuments, memorials and battlefields along the way. Our first stop was Mammoth Cave National Park.
Celebrating World Ranger Day with Fond Memories from our National Park Travels
Over the years, we’ve had the privilege of visiting nearly 50 national parks, monuments and memorials. Often, we’ve done this with our family, and with virtually no exception, we’ve encountered friendly, kind, helpful and passionate rangers who have been eager to make our visit memorable and enjoyable. Here’s just a few fond ranger memories from our trips to the national parks.