North America ·
1608 Days ·
68 Moments ·
15 July 2018
Brian’s Bucket List Journey 2018. One last set of pictures. The reality is that there are WAY TOO MANY pictures & memories to pick any favorites....I’ll just treasure all of them forever...
Brian’s Bucket List Journey 2018. A few more of my favorite pictures.
BRIAN’S BUCKET LIST JOURNEY 2018. Some more of my favorite pictures.
BRIAN’S BUCKET LIST JOURNEY 2018. END OF THE ROAD...Well it has been QUITE a camping trip!! I have driven nearly 15K miles seeing & camping in just a sliver of America over the past 5+ months. Primarily the southern deserts north thru the Rocky Mtns. into Canada. Not only scenery but wildlife, waters, forests, deserts, canyons & people. Quite an extraordinary place we live in. The hidden campgrounds, quiet rivers, majestic mountains, wild trout, sunsets/sunrises, clean mtn. air bring peace to frenzied souls. We should all be thankful for these lands we have. We should each commit to get out & explore them more & protect them. Those daily, mindless tasks on the To Do list are not that important after all...!!
But it is time for me to take a break from traveling. I have seen many things & places that were on my personal list but have many more to find in the years ahead. Hopefully you have a chance to SEE some of yours. Leaving you with a few of my favorite pictures. Safe travels...
10 July 2018
BANFF NATIONAL PARK, Banff, Alberta, Canada. YIKES, getting fairly far north from Atlanta, TX. A BEAUTIFUL place with giant mountains & turquoise rivers & lakes. The mountain sediments ground fine by glaciers over MMs of years are in all the water here & reflect sunlight to produce the vivid hues. Banff NP is in western Alberta Province and would be like our Glacier NP to Canadians. Six immense NPs in region that would take several months to explore including Banff, Yoho, Kootenay, Jasper NPs. Good goal for another summer..! Canadian Rockies known for sheer size & ruggedness of mountains, glaciers, spectacular rivers/lakes, enormous amounts of snow. Banff is a very international destination & has many luxury accommodations. At the Banff Springs Chalet (see pic), top room is $2500/night! After touring chalet, for some reason my daughters wanted to stay there vs. my camper.. Bri even tried on a $10k coat! Everywhere extraordinary views. Only 4MM people in Alberta. VERY nice....
7 July 2018
GOING-TO-THE-SUN-ROAD, Glacier National Park, MT. Absolutely the most spectacular road you will ever drive in a lifetime!!! Death defying, white knuckles, paranoia, fear of falling into the abyss, severe anxiety, panic r all common symptoms of GTTSR travelers!!! A stunning, panoramic place. Crosses across GNP from east side to west side of park going over Logan Pass. Very Narrow road built in early 1900s, sheer cliff drop offs for several thousand feet, crazy panicked tourist drivers, so much scenery hard to watch road, guard rails of rock that were built 100 years ago & only seem like bumps! Not enough to stop a Burb...! When going west & down the rock walls are only about 2 feet from windows....Aghhh!! Getting anxiety just writing about it..To be honest, I chickened out & took the shuttle letting some other crazy person drive!! Actually easier cuz you can look vs drive. JUST DO IT....Go to GNP.
6 July 2018
HIGHLINE TRAIL, Glacier NP, MT. Fear has a new name after this.....HL Trail!!! One of the most famous trails in American National Park system. Not for faint of heart.. Trail starts with a few hundred yards of 3-4 foot wide trail against a sheer rock wall towering above you & dropping off the cliff into thin air below you. Wall has chains covered in garden hose that you hold onto if ur wimpy otherwise just hike!!! Winds gusts make you feel like just sitting down & giving up!! Agh!! Ultimate adrenaline rush I guess. Spectacular trail along the Garden Wall ridge in GNP with several segments hiking thru cliffs, snowfields, meadows, forests. First segment is 7 miles 1 way & ends @ a Swiss Chalet hut for views, hot chocalate & recovery. Spectacular to say least. Looks DOWN on GTTSR! Definitely a bucket list must do hike.
4 July 2018
ICEBERG LAKE Trail, Glacier NP, MT. UNBELIEVABLE! Fantastic hike & an incredibly rewarding experience. Pristine & solitude & towering peaks & glaciers! Over 10 miles round trip with spectacular views, wildflowers, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, wolves chasing bighorn sheep, our friendly marmots everywhere, great trail thru forest & above timberline, culminating in a beautiful turquoise colored glacial lake filled with floating icebergs!! And for the brave , a swim in 32 degree water to sit on an iceberg! One of those special places that will never leave your memory. So awesome to experience true wilderness as it should be...As you may note in the pictures, another great, wild place adventure where my 2 daughters & I celebrated the 4th of July 2018 - a family tradition we try to do every year if possible. Memorable adventures!!! Nothing like icebergs in July!!!
1 July 2018
GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, MT. Known as “THE CROWN OF THE CONTINENT “!!! Without question the MOST spectacular/wild of all the NPs that I have visited. If you r only going to one American NP in ur life, go to this one! And also allocate a LOT of time to c it all! Really indescribable. Better be hiking FIT! The mountains are so awesome hard to portray. Saw many mountain goats, group of 25 giant bighorn sheep rams, a wild wolverine (YEAH! Bucket list item as they r one of most elusive, secretive predators in N. America), spectacular rivers, waterfalls, glacial lakes, sheer cliffs, many bears, moose, glaciers, snowfields, Swiss chalets, icebergs in Iceberg Lake, weeping walls with springs, drove world famous, fear inspiring Going-to-the-Sun Road, hiked famous Highline Trail & Iceberg Lake trail. All awesome! Camped on east side park in Blackfeet Indian Reservation campground. GNP borders Canada on north side. Remote place, great campgrounds. I Will post several blogs on GNP cuz saw so much.
28 June 2018
YELLOWSTONE NP, NW Wyoming. LEGENDARY!! our first National Park established 1872!! Amazing!! Imagine foresight of President Teddy Roosevelt & all the conservationists who fought at that time 2 preserve this for future generations.. 2.2 MM acres. Over 50% of world’s geysers & geothermal features in YNP - basically a giant super-volcano that erupted MMs yrs ago. Geysers are other worldly with beautiful colors/bubbling cauldrons. Scenery varied, spectacular. Grand Canyon of Yellowstone River. But by far BEST of all is the wildlife! Everywhere & abundant - miles of habitat & giant valleys with 00s wild bison/elk/antelope grazing as if early 1800s. Saw 14 bears while there!! Sow grizzly with cubs playing @ 30 yards so cool! Black wolf. The Lamar River Valley is known as America’s Serengeti Plain (Africa). Fabulous. Went there multiple times. Many wildlife watchers set up all day there. My favorite part of YNP.
27 June 2018
BEARTOOTH HIGHWAY, Silver Gate/Cooke City, Montana. WOOWW!! Super NICE, outstanding! Rated #1 most scenic drive in America by On The Road with Charles Kuralt/ Motorcycle Riders of America Assoc. Winds over 60 miles from NE entrance YNP thru Silver Gate/Cooke City to Red Lodge, MT. Thru pristine forests, giant mountain vistas, waterfalls, spectacular valleys, big Montana skies, wildflower meadows, alpine lakes some with ice still on them, headwaters of Clark’s a Fork Yellowstone River. SNOW everywhere & cold on 6-27-18! HIGH altitude road with switchbacks & overlooks - vertigo! Great campgrounds along the way (some no tents allowed - grizzlies) & general store near top named Top of the World! At top can see > 20 12k ft. peaks. Bucket List quality no doubt! Road is only access To NE entrance to YNP, the most scenic part of Park. DRIVE IT!!
2 June 2018
AMERICA - ITS OURS! Pictures worth a thousand words. Some would say this place is in the Best of the Best bucket....I have to agree. A stunning, humbling landscape. And visual reminder honoring the legacy of those before us with foresight to protect something for future generations - America’s wonderful public lands that we all own & should carefully steward. All Americans should spend FAR more time, effort & energy in their lifetimes to see them live in person.....GTNP!!!!!
30 May 2018
WILDLIFE. THE WEST. Really hard to get good, close-up photos of all the fabulous wild creatures in the Rockies/ GTNP/YNP with an IPhone! But at least u get a taste of a few of the inhabitants of the wild world here from some lucky encounters (due to hard work hiking & lots of windshield time!!)....Cow moose, marmots, bears, Fox, antelope, bison swimming across Yellowstone River in YNP!
29 May 2018
FABULOUS GREEN RIVER! Near Pinedale, WY. A pictorial that doesn’t do justice to the river with my amateur photos - the scenery, peacefulness, changing colors, greenery of spring that strains your eyes with all the shades of green, wildlife around every corner, quiet running of the river as it finds its way to the oceans, eagles perched in trees, old barns that have withstood decades of winter, rebirth of a place after long winter, camping where ever u want to stop. It starts in glaciers of the Winds, drops into glacier carved Green River Lakes, then flows 000s of miles to the mighty Colorado near Moab, Utah. So full of history as much of the settlement of the West started in this area by mountain men trapping beaver in upper Green River basin. I drove a quiet dirt road along the Green 4 for over 25 miles...What a paradise. I’ll be back!
GREEN RIVER LAKES, Bridger Wilderness, Pinedale, WY. OUTSTANDING! Spectacular Scenery much like Canadian Rockies. Headwaters of famous Green River. Great drive to hidden gem that few know about or visit. 56m from pinedale incl. 22 rough dirt. Located in beautiful, ragged Wind River Range which has more glaciers than anywhere in lower 48 states. Known as “The Winds” locally. Area was considered 4 another national park. Road follows green river for miles climbing thru pristine valleys/sage brush steppes, meadows, capped by aspens,firs, giant granite peaks. Wildlife everywhere - eagles, ospreys, cow/new born calf elk, deer, hundreds antelope! Area gets huge amounts snow, still much up high, duh! Glacier country. Excellent campground @ end road. WINDS are backpacker/photographer/camper Mecca with few people vs. CO/other famous wildernesses. Great trails on pristine lakes unscathed by human development. Place could b deemed “perfect outdoor paradise”!! I have my chair placed, got yours?
27 May 2018
PINEDALE, WY. Great town & region. Population 2000 & near amazing world class recreation in all directions. Big ranches, amazing views, longest mammal migration corridor in N.America(mule deer, pronghorns, elk) other than Alaskan caribou. Pinedale is winter range. Super clean with town welcome slogan “All the civilization you ever need”! Jackson Hole about 1.5 hours away, no crowds, Wind River mountains right outside town, home of mountain man Rendevous since mid-1800s, excellent trout fishing, 4x4 trails, wildlife everywhere. Great camping in many places close to town on glacial carved lakes. I camped at Soda Lake north of town 5m with amazing views, free, trout swimming along bank in cold clear water, quiet. Note pic of house I purchased. Holidays in Wyoming this year!!!! Bring snow gear...
19 May 2018
BECHLER RANGER STATION/ CAVE FALLS; SW corner YELLOWSTONE NP. Hey, look what a guy can find if he explores off beaten path! Found small road leading into remote, unvisited SW corner YNP. Area famous for solitude, no people, many waterfalls, great river hikes, high concentration grizzlies. Can only access this part of park from Idaho, not from main YNP roads. Note how small road is..Cave Falls has cave behind water u can go into during summer low water, High now as YNP had 170% avg snowpack this yr. Beautiful drive to region. Saw nesting pair white trumpeter swans with graceful long necks; pair Canada geese nesting on rock in swamp! Crazy. Visited with good guy ranger @ remote Bechler outpost who gave me lot of info. He laughed about my quest to see WILD grizzly in park cuz they r very elusive beasts! He has worked in YNP for 13 seasons & only seen 4; 3 from road 1 on hiking trail. No prob, I’ll just look harder with more windshield time/boot steps! Great campground with bear boxes.
GHOST TOWNS. Virgina City, MT. You can hear the old wagon wheels squeaking & the far off train whistles here when walking around. Eerie place..from a bygone era. I wonder if our generation could have survived? Not sure we’re tough enough mentally. Just another wild stop along the scenic byways of southwestern Montana...a person could spend a summer traveling all the off beaten track roads here & seeing history, scenery, wildlife. I stayed the night right in Nevada City & once dark, only one small light could be seen...while the winds blew & stars shown above mountains. U could feel & imagine but didn’t want to hear the sounds of the vigilante posse coming or hammering of nails to build the gallows...Weird place!!!
10 May 2018
MADISON RIVER VALLEY. Cameron/Ennis, MT. Perhaps the most scenic, peaceful, pristine place I have found in my travels. Pure Montana, a paradise valley & legendary river. Valley has vast, unspoiled vistas, bordered on each side by spectacular mtn ranges (Madison & Gravelly), miles of sagebrush grasslands, abundant wildlife, grizzlies, mighty Madison flowing thru it - teeming with trout. Over 60m long from Reynolds Pass to Ennis/Beartrap Canyon. Madison river headwaters in Yellowstone & flows 125m to confluence with Missouri River (Lewis & Clark expedition). Landscape much like historical with only few summer cabins, large high $ ranches, 1 small community. popular place summers for fishermen, campers, hikers, YNP region, big sky ski resort (bill gates house here!). Camped on river for 1 week+, caught lot of fish, toured Earthquake/Hebgen Lakes, local towns - twin bridges, divide, Ennis, Nevada city, Bozeman, big sky. Earthly paradise found! Weather cold/snow sunny/warm. Summers nice!!
8 May 2018
BEARS!! MT, WY, ID. Basic tutorial for u flatlanders on bears..really big deal here, primarily due 2 grizzlies. As Grand Teton NP ranger put it so well “just way of life here when outdoors in bear habitat 2 be vigilant watching for bears & where you go, carry bear spray and/or weapons at all times. Usually 1 canister for every 2 people or 1 for everyone. Although black bears can b dangerous with cubs, near their food or surprised, folks seem 2 be much more concerned re: grizzlies. There are > 600 in Yellowstone ecosystem alone. Yikes! Many more in MT & GNP. Great recovery from near extermination over last 100 years by ranchers, hunters, & habitat loss. photos/info show they can be 1000 lbs/aggressive in their territory. have even read info says no tuna while camping..bear favorite treat. Haha.Joke here is how tell black bear from grizzly poop? Grizzly poop has shoelaces, bear bells, sunglasses, etc in it. Aghh! Note pic of my bear spray. Need xtra underwear 2 if attacked. GREAT BEASTS
MISSOULA, MONTANA. Spanish word for mountain is Montana. Think state was named that by early explorers & lives up to it! Mountains everywhere, big ones with lots snow. Relief is great from valley floors to peak tops so Mtns seem larger. generally a lot lower elevations than CO but massive ranges. Many big rivers with great names: Blackfoot, Madison, Clark Fork, Yellowstone, Beaverhead, Bitteroot. movie “River Runs Though It” filmed in MT. Great frontier character arnd state so far with friendly people. There is just a certain cache about saying “I live in Montana” that really no other state can match. imaginations of most see Montana as last great frontier & wilderness in lower 48 states with enormous amounts public lands, few people. I did road trip over to Missoula from W. Yellowstone to check out.Spectacular country everywhere, rivers raging with snow melt, U. Of MT here with about 15k students, 2 hours to Glacier NP, in far west MT near Idaho. GREAT laid back town!
5 May 2018
JACKSON HOLE, WY; GRAND TETON NP; NATIONAL ELK REFUGE. Absolutely THREE of my favorite places! So much pretty scenery, wildlife, wide open spaces, part of Yellowstone ecosystem as GTNP borders YP south boundary. TETONS recognized worldwide with rugged peaks/large relief from valley floor to top -7k ft. Pics show giant peaks from both WY/ID side. GTNP certainly in top 10 USA. Wild Snake River flows thru park/JH with superb fishing, rafting, wildlife watching tours. Elk Refuge best visited Jan-March when 8-9k elk there, big bulls & lots of predators. U tour refuge in horse drawn wagons/sleighs in the snow! Beautiful! Most elk have left refuge 4 summer ranges but u see them everywhere now. Lots Bison/moose too. JH like Telluride or Aspen with world class skiing, snowmobiling, 2 NPs, scenery, galleries, shops, restaurants but still old west feel..Went searching for grizzly pics as several seen recently @ Pilgrim/Pacific Creeks. No luck. Only here 1 day, back in few weeks! OUTSTANDING!
3 May 2018
YELLOWSTONE NP, AMERICAN BISON. A pictorial/ode to America’s most iconic animal! What majestic legendary wildlife. Yellowstone’s wild free-ranging bison herd only remaining wild herd living in its historical range since prehistoric times. Although grizzlies/wolves get all the press, the bison give Yellowstone its character. Seeing them up close in their land is awe inspiring. Must have been humbling when MMs inhabited plains N. America....Stoic, powerful, quiet eyes, massive, enduring, tough. So peaceful 2 watch them eat/nibble grass, walk few steps, eat, walk..Their post-winter skinny bodies reflect the hard struggle, happy 4 spring. Bulls loners til summer rut/2k lbs. cow herds nearby; calves due any day. Thick, matted hair 2 withstand 30 below temps. Park is theirs incl. roads. REWARDING 2 c them!
YELLOWSTONE Nat. Park. More pics from my 1 day in the Park. Likely will go back again over next 1-2 months to different area.
YELLOWSTONE NAT. PARK. World famous/America’s 1st NP! West entrance (W. Yellowstone, MT), early season 5/3/18, park just open few days. Much of Park/roads still CLOSED due to snow & grizzly bears exiting hibernation. Different feel than summer season....SNOW, SNOW! fewer people, not as green, park “waking up”from long winter! Park 2 giant 2 c in 1 day so touring west side (need 5-6 days). Beautiful drive along Madison, Gibbon & Firehole rivers; huge meadow systems, great fly fishing another summer trip. Excellent scenery, heavily forested, MAJORITY world’s geysers, steam vents & geothermal features(10k total). wildlife spectacle: end of winter/1 day only/small part of park - >75 bison, moose, 4 swans, elk, bald eagles, sand hill cranes, coyote, kingfisher, Canada geese nesting everywhere, mule deer, blue heron, many duck species. No bears/wolves yet. Will go to Lamar Valley north side park next 30 days much better chance 2c wolf packs/black/grizzly bears in open. EXCELLENT!
29 April 2018
MONTANA, West Yellowstone. YEAHHHH!!!! Finally made it to God’s country with grizzly bears, wolf packs, wolverines, wild untamed land, big elk, giant mountains & wilderness areas, many legendary trout rivers, home of mountain men, few people, world class snowmobiling, Yellowstone ecosystem & Glacier Nat. Park (many view GNP as most stunning scenery in lower 48). Plus sobering reality that outdoor recreation here comes with potential life threatening grizzly bear encounters...Just have to learn the bear rules, take the precautions & recognize now in another realm. And be glad there are still places left much like they were in pre-colonial times. Largest town MT - Billings @ 110k, 2nd largest Missoula @ 70k. Camp host warned against fishing up Warm River again til get bear spray as bears just out of hibernation & hungry/grouchy/Cubs! Campground just 8m from SW CORNER Yellowstone. Winter BARELY over here, low 25 this morn. Agh!
HENRYS FORK/ Northeastern Idaho. More pics & BEAR info. Camped & fished on Warm River, tributary HF. Very nice. Island Park & Last Chance, ID r very scenic small communities nestled on Henry’s Fork river on way to west entrance to Yellowstone Park. Harriman State Park there which is 11k acres donated by railroad tycoon Mr. Harriman/Union Pacific. It was his family summer estate & has miles of HF flowing thru it. People come from all over to fish dry flies in the park HF. All this country still at end of winter with no leaves yet. Likely very beautiful in summer with all the rivers, grass & wildlife. My travels just started too early & I went north too early for green.... will slow down northward journey & wait on the sun/green/warm......! Plus rivers swollen with snowmelt soon so bad fishing for while....
27 April 2018
HENRYS FORK of the SNAKE RIVER/ EASTERN IDAHO. Beautiful land, mountains, region. Both SW WY & E. ID. Headed to HF to fly fish. Another famous river. Camped on both Warm River & HF. Near Ashton, ID. Region western gateway to Yellowstone/Grand Teton Nat.Parks plus SW MT. Giant west side of Tetons visible; still huge amount snow & Still coooold! Agh! Caught nice trout on dry flies but rivers have high water due to snowmelt. Fishing tougher for next 4-6 weeks. Seen near camp: moose, bald eagles, osprey catching trout in river, 15 PILES BEAR POOP on my fishing trail, geese/ducks nesting, sand hill cranes, muleys, beavers, bear sighted near campground......
BIGGEST change: now in Grizzly country. VERY different feeling in woods/fishing now as not top predator. Apprehension. Signs everywhere bout Bear Safety, food storage, camping rules, hiking in bear country, carrying bear spray at all times, what to do if attacked, etc...Probably will buy bear spray soon since I’m a walking fish mkt.!
26 April 2018
FOSSIL BUTTE, Nat. Mon., Kemmerer, WY. Stopped here 4 night on way 2 Idaho. Really cool place. Learned lot about fossils, how formed, what formations they’re in & where in USA located. WY has many fossil locations of different types of prehistoric animals. Beautiful, open landscape around FB. Mule deer! No people this time year. On my nature hike got 20yds from cow/calf moose laying down. Excellent but didn’t take phone. Agghhh! SW Wyoming/SE Idaho beautiful area where the Oregon Trail from 1850s traversed. U can stop @ historical sites & even see wagon ruts ground into rock.
Fossils primarily found in sedimentary rock formations formed in ancient seas where mud/silt settles on top dead creatures that HAD not been disturbed/eaten by predators & scavengers. Different layers were from different times. Layers exposed over MMs yrs thru erosion then u see fossils. FB has Green River formation exposed from 52MM yrs. fish/animals arnd lake/swamp. C pics, layer at top. Dinosaurs in 65MM layer.
22 April 2018
GREEN RIVER, FLaming Gorge. Unfortunately fishing success wasn’t as good as I expected - cold freezing weather, snow, high winds, springtime people crowds all along river, fast, high water & difficult to wade fish. Just a few feet from shore water gets deep & is dangerous @ 42 degrees with current. So hard to cast to where fish are. Hiked up & down river a lot though, saw nice scenery, everyone had tough fishing, # of times pods of big fish rising to surface right by me but they would not take any of flies thrown to them. SMART, EDUCATED TROUT that hand lowly fishermen their hats. Just so many types of bugs with different life cycles it is VERY hard sometimes to present everything right so they bite. Oh well, nice place. Always another year. Some extra pics of area. I hung on the river but lake & surrounding snow mountains (High Unitas) are a whole different world to explore some day....
17 April 2018
GREEN RIVER, FLaming Gorge NRA, Dutch John, UT. Awesome, beautiful place far from rat race. Incredible 15k trout/mile - that’s all needs saying. Definitely bucket list. Emerald green crystal clear water, aquarium watching big trout swim with 10-15 ft visibility, giant red river canyon walls. Drift boats everywhere. Named FG by Lewis & Clark expedition mid 1800s due to rock colors.Green River damed made lake, famous tailwater below dam. Looks like I gotta win lottery soon so can buy cabins @ ALL these famous fishing rivers. And a drift boat too. Little town Dutch John mainly fly shops, couple lake/river resorts. Lots of river tubers boat rentals summer. Fun! Dam sometimes releases 9k cfs water depending on snowmelt which is staggering..now bout 1800 cfs. Most people fish river from drift boats cuz river deep, hard to wade & they can fish miles of water in a day but I’m a lowly DIY wade/walk fisherman. Guided flyfish trips $500+/day or drift boat rental $200/day but need ptr. 2 row/fish
8 April 2018
SALUTE TO TRIP PEOPLE. Traveling for 7 weeks now, worth noting some interesting friendly helpful folks met along way...PLUS few extra Lake Powell region interesting photos
Whitney wildlife tour guide king ranch; Wayne fishing guide port Mansfield; Bill rancher Langtry; Ed park ranger big bend; Steve/Elian British Columbia travelers GMNP; Joe/Mark 25k acre ranch owners Chiricahua; Felix forest firefighter Gila Nat forest; Jeff grader driver/elk hunter/shed collector Luna; Betty volunteer watching bald eagle nest Alpine; 6 Michigan college kid campers Big Bend; Albert US Marine married to Navajo owns farm bottom Canyon de Chelly; Steve volunteer Historic Fort Bluff; Corey fisherman fishing/fly tips SJR; Eric propane guy who herds cows in Norwood/Brian’s elk hunting area Blanding UT; yacht owner Lake Powell from Silt, CO;
LAKE POWELL/Henry Mtns/Hanksville, UT. Drive from Bullfrog LP-Hanksville 1 of most scenic roads ever driven. Wild, inhospitable, desert sandstone, snow capped rugged Henry’s. Elev 11.5k. Literally outdoor paradise. VAST is word..Hard 2 describe. I b back 2 explore.Hanksville 1 of strangest places ever been-cross tween desert oasis, shantytown, forgotten lost in time 75 yrs ago, pop few 00, close to Robbers Roost Canyon expect Butch Cassidy/Hole inWall gang ride in any moment. Yesterday/this am highest stress day of trip, self-induced, took burb/camper far up narrow steep high road on way 2 Escalante on top of massive spectacular Waterpocket Fold. Deep Chasms, no guard rails, 1k ft drop offs, roller coaster road, spectacular views no turn arounds, 30 mph winds... near panic attack up & down & no sleep stressing on how get down.Agh! Take week 2 recover,carpal white knuckle grip. CRAZY. Need ATVs, endless off-roading. UT MUST be broke cuz no guard rails in state! Time to go find more FISH
7 April 2018
LAKE POWELL, UT. Entire region STUNNING scenery, vast red sandstone canyons & slickrock everywhere, clear blue deep water, 00s big houseboats in water & dry docked, 00s nice expensive yachts, many nice marinas (me @ Bullfrog & Halls Crossing ), few people now off season til mid May, great weather 40/80 spread but windy afternoons. LP 186m long, formed daming glenwood canyon/ CO river, 2k miles shoreline, geologic marvels every direction, 96 large named side canyons in lake, coral colored sand dunes, 4k elevation, 00 mile views, ferry crosses lake, isolated empty central UT, 80m to nearest town of 3500, giant boating rec area; folks camp on shoreline, anchor houseboats & take 20-30m daily/week trips. Water temp 57 now 75 summer; summer air temp up 2 110; high altitude sun cooks! Grand Canyon starts below LP. Surrounding vast canyonlands would take lifetime to explore. Many BLM dirt roads need high clearance 4x4s/ATVs; intimidating roads w/ dropoffs. Ferry ride grt! Good park facilities.
2 April 2018
SAN JUAN RIVER. Few more pics of area, lake, campground, ospreys & culture....I stayed in Cotton wood campground RIGHT on river. Nice & $14/nite makes price right!! Note no leaves yet. Come on spring, tired of cold nites, temp spread still 28-60 sunny. Cool osprey nesting platforms & roosts. Many installed along river, chicks r hatched & u can watch parents feed them. A lot of ospreys flying every day. Large raptors that eat mainly fish & almost as big as bald eagles. Very long wings. Cool to watch them swooping above water looking for fish rising to grab in their talons. One circled close above me once while I was landing trout. Thought it was going to grab my fish..!! very majestic birds of prey....the drift boats r main boats for flyfishing western rivers; one person rows & 2 fishing; lake is beautiful, cold, deep, blue water, houseboats, summer paradise, nice marinas/ campgrounds.
1 April 2018
SAN JUAN RIVER, Aztec, NM. SJR on all fly fishermen’s bucket list! grows giant rainbow trout - 4m gold medal section below Navajo Lake dam. All catch & release/single barbless hooks. Avg. trout 17-20 in.,3-5 lbs. Some 25-30 in. 8-10 lbs. All fight hard! Very tough 2 catch cuz water clear, fish smart, seen every fly 1k times. Must use small line (2.5 lb test)breaks easily. Much skill needed 2 hook/land trout. Not for beginners. Tiny flies cuz bugs trout eat r tiny. SJR is tailwater fishery, i.e. below dam super cold water @ 42-45 degrees. Grows MM bugs that trout eat & get fat!! Extremely hard 2 wade river cuz slippery slime, frozen feet, rocky bottom, miles of canyon shoreline.
Caught 60 of my largest rainbows ever in 4 days. They jump, zing line off reel, run in fast current, take 15 min 2 land while standing in river. Beautiful colors. Ospreys too..Outstanding! No fish pics cuz alone, phone swims if u do. Most peaceful & greatest joy in life - flyfishing western rivers!!
25 March 2018
MONUMENT VALLEY, Bluff, Utah. Few more pics....
24 March 2018
MONUMENT VALLEY, Mexican Hat, UT. Stunning valley! An ICONIC place known worldwide. Just like our memory recalls if u ever saw a western movie or envisioned the real old West with spotted ponies & bare-chested warriors whose eagle feather headbands defined a people....A MUST see on anyone’s lifetime bucket list..17M dirt road loop; John Wayne’s movie cabin/Goulding museum; he loved it here, many movies filmed here, Forest Gump hill, all the spectacular named monuments, the grandeur...Got here @ daylight, sunrise on monuments, spent all day touring, hiking, museum. Excellent! No camping allowed as Navajo Tribal Park. Go at daylight or dusk for magical light & see it as if 150 yrs ago. Favorites: John Ford point & Artists Overlook.
23 March 2018
VALLEY OF THE GODS, Mexican Hat, UT. Outstanding !! From a purely dramatic natural spectacle perspective & sheer magnitude of humbling scenery shaped by the eons - like sands in an hourglass.... magnificent place to camp!! VofG Rd winds an 18 mile loop thru secluded valley with MMs of wonderful views & light shades/changes on the prehistoric sandstone formations eroded for millennia. Dispersed campsites everywhere with few inhabitants. Perfect for tents or trailers. Go east entrance @ sunrise for morning colors. West entrance late afternoon for sunset orange color explosions.....my meager pics can’t translate the awe...March/April off season in canyon country but perfect weather no people....Girls the B&B biscuits were fabulous - ate 10 of them! Monument Valley next!
UTAH; Bluff & Mexican Hat, UT. Finally made it across UT border to God’s country!!! INFAMOUS SE Utah canyonlands/wild places. Humans only allowed to visit not alter. This is geologic time land, not our blink & it’s over lifetimes. Weather wonderful, cool sunny 35/65 daytime spread/10% humidity. Bluff sign says it all -Founded 650 AD! Roads r long, straight & empty. High elev. desert world. Views r endless snowcapped La Salles/San Juan Mtns. San Juan River flows thru here, oldest river N America 2nd largest sediment load behind Nile. Ends Lake Powell. 2 yr wait for rafting permit!! I’m Headed upstream SJR next week into NM for world class trout flyfishing. Google Gooseneck SP pics! WOW. Bluff =old fort outpost \early Mormon settlement near Four Corrners. Navajo\Ute tribe country. Grt hidden town close to vast fabulous landscape. Bought a stucco desert bungalow here to escape, permanently! Blue endless skies. Can u figure out how MH got its name?Also burnt orange primary color here GO UT
22 March 2018
CANYON DE CHELLY NM. Chinle, NM. AWESOME DAY! CDC definitely one America’s WOW places. Spiritual feel due to Navajo history, cliff dwellings & natural splendor. Toured 8 overlooks & did unreal White House Ruins trail descending 1.5M down into canyon. Pics attempt but fail to do justice to descent. Wonderful place. Ansel Adams photographed where I stood! Met local Navajo man farming blue corn in canyon bottom. Can only go into the CDC with Navajo guide except White House trail. Free ranging Navajo horses everywhere. Tribes people very poor, struggle to live in 2 worlds- western & historical Navajo ways. A wild, wild place. Glad it’s here....
CANYON DE CHELLY NM. Chinle , AZ. AMAZING place. Central Homeland of Navajo people for centuries. Lived/farmed/hid in the labyrinth canyons miles long. Still do. Ruins r from their ancestral Puebloan people arnd 1275 AD. Dizzing heights from canyon rim > 1000 ft sheer cliffs. Intimidating close up few guard rails/wind. Ravens squawking/soaring BELOW u. Cool 2 watch. Raven sounds one of most distintive in nature. Hogan = traditional houses natural materials 5-8 sides dirt flr. Sandstone Colors SO rich. Historical Navajo tribes smaller stature people - poorer diet, only subsistence food levels & when grnd corn sand in their systems. Avg life 25-30 yrs. Tough lives in desert....but beautiful canyons....people lived here for 5k yrs.
20 March 2018
PIE TOWN, NM. OMG!!! Yipee!! blackberry pie was worth a $MM, 2 scoops ice cream!! May camp here for week. Can’t believe middle nowhere & I find homemade pies & pies & pies. Girls too bad u r slaving away in school. 3 different pie cafes...So funny. Even pie festival in Sept. Also last pay phone on planet! Beautiful central NM country. P-Pines. Quiet, No people. John Wayne had ranch nearby. Headed toward Canyon de chelly Park AZ.
Three pics from Bosque NWR in Socorro, NM. Very cool. 20k Sandhill cranes winter there. Famous with wildlife photogs..stayed Socorro few days waiting for warm up...
14 March 2018
LUNA ,NM & ALPINE, AZ. Amazing ponderosa pine forests/rugged canyons. Gila & Apache NF. Giant trees for miles, no understory like park, can walk thru forests without trail for miles - carpet gold grass underneath. So quiet ...7k/8k elevation respectively. Beautiful little mtn towns. NO people. Towns only 12 miles apart; west central NM. Land of Giant bull elk. Famous place very hard to draw tag. Saw lot elk. Met local hunter lived there all his life. Big thing here - elk shed hunting mar/apr. Walking woods looking for big antlers that drop off bulls now. Very valuable @ $15/lb. so nice 6x6 bull antler sheds @ 30 lbs. worth almost $500!! I might come back next yr shed hunt for while. Cool! People come scour forests for 4-8 weeks. Met conservation lady watching new bald eagle nest @ Luna Lake, chicks hatched, cool huge birds with big wood nests. Oldest nesting pair in NM. So cold 21 Thur nite 3/15 camper water froze; snowstorm coming so moved down mtn to Socorro, NM
13 March 2018
MULE CREEK, NM. Gila Nat. Forest/ Mogollon Mtns. What a beautiful quiet landscape of pine forests & grasslands. Few inhabitants in this hidden enclave in western NM. Near mighty Gila Wilderness of West/central NM & Gila/San Francisco rivers. Sooo glad to be out of desert & FINALLY back into mtn forests again for change. Giant old Ponderosa pines with red bark & history.....just like Ben Cartwright & the Ponderosa. One of my favorite trees. To hear the wind thru the pines, smell fragrant air & listen to the silence is refreshing.....came here cuz of MC name & it is very nice. Good hiking, sightseeing. Chatted with postal lady at MC Post Office. She has 57 mailboxes rented for locals..Dry @ 10-15 inch rain/yr, little snow. Lots of public land. ELEVATION >5000. Many Louis L’Amour novels & other great Western books r set in this country. Riders got lost in the Mogollons....Headed N to Canyon de Chelly NatMon in NE AZ soon.
P.S. Hard to keep days & nites straight so no more nite counts.
12 March 2018
FORT BOWIE CEMETERY. What a haunting, humbling place in Apache Pass near the fort. The record of some who lost their lives in the struggle to tame the wild land. Including the 2 yr. son of famous Apache chief, Geronimo. I’m Standing where folks had their hats off with a few words said for those who passed 150 years ago....And the water, the spring, Apache Spring which flowed 12 gal/min & was the water source for all - Apaches, US Army & the wildlife....
11 March 2018
FT BOWIE NAT. HISTORICAL PARK. Near Bowie, AZ. REALLY interesting. Army Fort ruins in mtns in Apache Pass. It defended the stagecoach route from El Paso to Tucson, wagon trains, prospectors & pioneer settlers from Apache attacks. 1862-1894. Route went thru Apache Pass in the Chiricahua Mtns. Nearly 150 yrs ago. > 100 soldiers. Wow. Made from Adobe brick, juniper/oak wood & rocks. Next to Apache Spring, only water for miles. Saw old rock walls, Apache camp replica, the spring, the old wagon ruts on the road thru pass, & cool artifacts/historical pics. Had the old fort cemetery with tombstones from 1870s incl 2 yr old son of grt Apache chief, Cochise, who surrendered near here. So much history in the desert Southwest!!!! Climate is so dry here that things don’t rot much. From old pics of land/desert mtns arnd fort, land looks much the same....but Apaches knew it & met all there food/water/shelter/clothing needs. Rains come in July-aug.
10 March 2018
CHIRICAHUA NM. 2nd photo group. Apaches called it the “land of the standing rocks”.
CHIRICAHUA NATIONAL MONUMENT. Willcox, AZ. Very COOL place! Last stronghold of Chiricahua Apaches & their famous chief, Cochise. Beautiful hostile land at high elevation 5k+ far SE AZ close to Mexican border. Apache Pass stagecoach route. Landscape is desert grasslands & desert “sky island” mtn ranges. Some snow on peaks! Yikes! Park known for eerie wild rock outcroppings & hiking trails thru them. Temps 40-60s. Met rancher, Joe, who let me camp on his ranch near park. 25k acre ranch here & another big ranch by Big Bend. Desert Dry with only .5 inch rain since August. Desert wildlife saw some deer. Foreboding feeling when in this land- imagine the fear, isolation, backbreaking work, struggle to survive, constant quest for water/food & mental anguish of settlers trying to make it daily in 1854 in this desert land of the Apaches....don’t think we can comprehend it but u can feel it here...last Apaches surrendered in 1888 & were moved to reservation in Oklahoma. Sad legacy of white men
8 March 2018
CARLSBAD CAVERNS NP. 2nd photo group. Wow!
7 March 2018
CARLSBAD CAVERNS NP. Carlsbad, NM. Excellent! Other worldly, quiet reverence, humbling, journey to center earth, discovered late 1800s. Drove to Mesa top, Hiked 1.2 steep miles down into earth/cavern then another 1 mile arnd cave in Great Room once there. 300-400k bats there summer. Indescribable formations - stalactites, stalagmites , curtains, lily pads, columns. Formed over last 20MM yrs. surface water seeps thru cave to make formations over eons. Dark underground, constant temp 56, man made trails, some rooms 150ft ceilings. Low artificial light to help see. Super cool. Originally lowered visitors by rope in big buckets. Not crowded this time yr. cave is 33 miles long with much still unexplored. All visitors speak in whispers due to awe struck. What a national treasure!
5 March 2018
GUADALUPE MTNS NP. Pine springs, TX. Nite 15-16. Nice park,far smaller than Big Bend. Isolated part of TX on NM border. Stayed in pine springs Campground Elevation 5700ft but still desert. Has desert/mtn components. Known as “sky island in desert” cuz 10k yrs ago climate changed in SW US. Drier hotter which changed lower elevations from grass/forest to desert. Animals changed to adapt to desert. At higher elevations forest, cool, moisture remained. highest peak in TX @ 8700ft. Saw mule deer, manzanita tree, Park even has band of elk at top. Lot of trails but fairly tough with lots of elevation gain & rocky. Hiked Bowl trail & McKitrick Canyon. Both nice. MC has a running water creek & old cabin. Most hikers bagging Guadalupe Peak since high point but tough with 3k elevation gain & 8 miles RT. I didn’t make it to Bowl top but probably best area. A 2 mile long bowl of forest & grass at top after hiking thru desert to get there. Tent & RV campgrounds @ $8/nite. Beautiful west TX vie
4 March 2018
ALPINE, TX. Just out of B.B. this morning. Been wandering arnd that desert for 5 days now! Headed north toward Guadalupe Mtns. NP on New Mexico border. B.B. super nice & wild!!! Can b Some tough weather- cold, hot 92, wind/dirt storms, rain. I did grt in my rolling cave but some tenters suffered. Motto: b prepared! Some more highlights: upper burro Mesa trail, upper burro Mesa pour-off (waterfall), sunrise @ chimneys trail & Sotol Vista, Sunsets @ desert mtn overlook & The Window, chisos mtns. The UBMT pour off very intimidating even for me. U could hear the water coming...
Without DOUBT B.B. is best seen daylight to about 9:30 and 5-dark. Colors, heat, visibility, animals, no people early. I mainly did SW side park -less visited. Vast, epic place.....few more B.B. pics added.
28 February 2018
BIG BEND NP. Cottonwood Campground. Nite 12-14. Sooo nice & quiet on banks of Rio Grande under the trees. Lawn chair feeling right. Girls u need those hammocks & books...Aghhhh! Look up photos. Will use as base camp for few days for day trips in burb only. RG & Mexico about 50 yds away. Crazy
GREAT DAY! Headed into BB 5:45am in dark this morn. Full moon...Super eerie...landscape like another planet! As got light - WOOOWWW! Prehistoric, awesome, hostile, MM colors of rock, wild shapes, sheer walls, weird cactus. 1st one @ campground @ 7am when opened. Got best spot. Best: 35 mile drive down maxwell scenic dr., vermillion flycatcher, sunrise & moonrise over chisos, javelinas/roadrunners, 3.5M hike Tuff Canyon & desert. Tough! Temp 40-85. Super clear skies...sun intense...lotta pioneers bound to have perished in this desert. Silence here is disconcerting. One word-Magnificent Treasure!
BIG BEND NP (west entrance). Nite 11. Wow what a place! No way to see it one trip. Since so many great photos of avail, I’ll take only few - too many locations. See BB photos on web or Nps.gov. Great morn Marathon then south to B.B. Long haul > 75 miles to park HQ. Busy season - nice weather/spring break/spring desert flowers. As result, NO campsites available in park today. Needed to arrive by 9am even then a scramble. So drove all way thru park to west entrance & camp on side of road. To Viva Terlingua! Some options tomorrow - up early & roll!
Cool places I’ll visit/hike next few days: famous chisos basin/mtns, mule ears spring, st Elena canyon, cottonwood campground, hot spring Rio Grande (then jump in river to cool off!), south rim trail, window rock. Elevation in park - from 1850’ to 7800’ in chisos mtns. Excellent desert plant communities. Helped some Michigan college kids today. Tenters @ primitive campsite. Wind high couldn’t cook Mac cheese! Used camper. So happy!!
27 February 2018
MARATHON, TX. Nite 10. EXCELLENT TOWN!!! Gateway to Big Bend. Stayed here last nite. Headed to BB this morning. Hiked arnd Marathon this am. Like it here. Good place to winter in future since close to the wild BB country? Wild sleeping last nite as parked real close by railroad tracks - > 10 trains went by & it seemed like I was dreaming trains!
Pop. 700, elevation 4000’, not hot summers or cold winters; cool dry big vistas old west feel; great old hotel Gage Hotel; walk a few blocks on old town roads & ur @ edge town looking for wagon trains or stagecoach; no commercialization; QUIET; filmed famous movie Last Picture Show here > 50 years ago; beautiful town gardens; housing architecture old stucco with real tumbleweeds in yards. Cool! Tough living since 150 miles to big grocery store but has small town market. They let me use WIFI. Met interesting folks in hotel, on the dusty streets & art galleries.
Time for B.B.! Hasta la vista!
LANGTRY, TX. Home of Judge Roy Bean of western legends. The “Law West of the Pecos River” in the 1800s. He lived here & held court in his saloon. On way to Marathon, TX. Known as far west Texas. A wild place to say least. Saw no houses for 50 miles it seems...old windmills..some goats & sheep...wild canyons & million kinds of cactus...sat in middle of highway for almost 30 min b4 car came. Great that places still exist virtually untouched by the city rat race.....just the history of the struggle to settle the West. People lived very, difficult & likely shorter lives. Met 2 local ole timers while walking the streets.... their stories & history were amazing.. like when steam engine trains rolled thru town...hear the whistles in the crisp evening air???
LANGTRY, TX. The Wild West. No doubt!!! No law west of the PECOS River. Cool ghost town with 11 inhabitants.....right on the Rio Grande in far west TX. Eerie place but has great visitor center for all the history...you can feel the fear the settlers must have had in late 1800s expecting Commanches coming over the ridge!!!! I walked around & talked to couple of local old timers...they r not concerned about the outside world. Hot dry desert with < 10 inches rain/yr. Temp in 70s now nice
PECOS RIVER. Awesome place & views where the mighty PECOS, originating near Santa Fe, meets the Rio Grande on Mexican border. Saw flock wild turkeys, antelope, vast vistas & deep, forbidding canyons....bridge is 274 ft above water cuz floods so violent washed out last three bridges over the years. wow!
25 February 2018
DEL RIO, TX. Aimistad Lake area. More photos of campground,area & park visitor center....
24 February 2018
AMISTAD LAKE. DEL RIO,TX. Nites 7,8 &9.. On the border now. Stayed @ Laredo TX rest stop on way to Amistad from coast. At Amistad dam went to border crossing where you can go into Mexico. Wild place down here. Very Spanish/Mexico feel. Just like Lonesome Dove...how it really was in the late 1800s. Amistad means “friendship” in Spanish. Hostile, giant land full of heat, rattlesnakes, big views, thornbrush, cactus, amazing archaeology history of native Americans living in south Texas along Rio Grande river for 000s of years, deep canyons, white limestone outcrops, pictographs, clear dry weather. On eastern edge of Chihuahuan desert. Even saw flock of sandhill cranes > 5’ tall!
Amistad created in ‘66 by daming Rio Grande, Devils River & Pecos River. Beautiful lake with clear cold water, miles of shoreline, can boat into Mexico side of lake & famous for Giant bass - up to 15 lbs!!! Stayed two nites at campground here for $4/nite - yippee! Shows you can live cheaper if u want to
23 February 2018
PORT MANSFIELD, TX. Third photo group.
PORT MANSFIELD, TX. Second photo group.
22 February 2018
PORT MANSFIELD, TX. Nite 5&6. Three diff photo sets for PM. 1st shows PM “rabbits”! everywhere/cute. PM @ end of road; isolated on Laguna Madre - west side south padre island. Fishing village, quiet, cool boats, interesting people, not developed, few yuppies, some winter Texans, home to much wildlife - land & ocean. Cool place, liked it. Good place to escape to or hide....Crazy windy this time year @ 25 mph! Very Humid, tropical feel, didn’t see many people looking stressed. Yeah! Stayed at nice RV Park(RVP) for $30/nite. Talked to fishing guys in marinas - lot of fish. One fishing guide’s boat cost $93k. Yikes! hot already with 92 degrees one day and only February!
Trip looking up as staying @ good place. Can see my journey will evolve daily. With highs & lows. Seems like key is to lower expectations, eliminate scheduling, only drive as far as u want, stop anywhere u want & chill! Two mantras to live by on road 1) nowhere to go and all day to get there! 2) Crisis? What crisis?
20 February 2018
KINGSVILLE, TX. Nites 3&4. Got to Kingsville Tues.Near south TX coast. interesting town. Miles of impenetrable brush!! Highlight = wildlife tour of famous King Ranch; C running W brand. 3.5 hr tour driving ranch. phone dead so no pics. saw many giant whitetail bucks, giant longhorns, javelinas, alligators, beautiful tropical birds, etc. Awesome!! Ranch largest in US @ 825K acres. home to > 356 bird species. Excellent outing. While here saw jets @ naval air training base for carrier pilots, Baffin Bay on coast, renown for redfish/speckled trout fishing, exhibits history King Ranch (town named after King) & TX A&M Kingsville. Ugh!! 2 nites again @ WallyMart cuz easiest, free, closest to town. Other RV’ers there. RVPs on ocean too far/expensive. Headed to Port Mansfield from here -ON coast. yeah!!
In honor of military folks, got buzz cut today! WOW, Cooler.
TIP TO READERS: 4 places u like GOOGLE photos/info. No way I can take as good pics @ best locations. See nps.gov for National Park
19 February 2018
AUSTIN, TX. Nite 1 & 2. Headed to Austin for rest afternoon after Dallas. First nite @ Rest Area Georgetown TX in rain - 2/18/18. Already can see rest stops, Walmart parking lots, etc. are RV’er’s friend when traveling vs. having to find, deviate to & pay for bonafide RV Parks. Kinda loud, weird & unnerving to spend 1st nite on road parked next to the big rigs....is this really how Bucket List journeys r supposed to start?..
Made it to Austin next day. Good hike in Zilker Park with Bri. Grabbed dinner @ famous Magnolia Cafe near Lady Bird Lake in downtown Austin. She is doing great in nursing school so had to go study. Grt to c her & Lauren.
2nd nite in Wally parking lot (ugh!) in RAIN as had to wait on FEDEX the next day for Brian new phone/IPad for trip. Trip not so glamorous so far.......
18 February 2018
DALLAS, TX - Bass Pro Shop on I-30. Raining!!! Aghhh! All way to Dallas today. Real pain pulling camper trailer on freeway in this weather. But great lunch & catch-up with Lauren at best store on planet - Bass Pro Shop! Then headed south toward Austin for rest afternoon.
My “new to me”used camper trailer is a 21’, Shamrock 19 by Flagstaff (Forest River) hybrid. It has 2 queen drop down bunk beds, a couch, a dinette, full kitchen & bath, nice sound system & good layout. What an upgrade over my tent camping for 50 years! So far so good, all comforts of home.
18 February 2014
O’FARRELL, TX. It’s time to go. If not now, when......See places I haven’t seen. Do things I haven’ done. Drink coffee in new towns. Leaving the old family homestead of 53 years, Crooked Creek Ranch,O’Farrell, TX on Sun 2/18/18 - but keeping all the memories close at hand. Heading S then W then N for rest of year hopefully to follow the warm weather. Final destinations unknown. But likely Montana, Pacific Northwest & Canada. But first to Dallas & Austin to see my special daughters!!
Just spent 2.5 months wintering @ CCR, doing ranch clean-up, chillin, fishing & R&R. Then bought myself a camper to go see America & western US. And work on my bucket list! Such as: fly fish as many of the famous western rivers as possible, like the Yellowstone, Madison, Missouri, Clark’s Fork; see a wolverine & grizzly in the wild while hiking in wild places like Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Glacier National Parks; hike to bottom of Grand Canyon; see southern Utah, the redwoods,etc. Carpe Diem-seize the day!