National Parks

The US National Park System contains some of the most spectacular natural sites in the world.  Here are some examples that we have visited over the years:

 

south-rim-of-the-grand-canyonGrand Canyon National Park click here – we’ve been there 3 times:

  • 1st visit to the North Rim in 2001
  • 2nd visit to the North & South Rim in 2008
  • 3rd visit to the South Rim in 2011

It has to be seen through a person’s own eyes to be truly appreciated; still pictures & videos can’t do it justice.  It’s an awesome, jaw-dropping experience to see it for the 1st time.

South Rim is open year around.  North Rim is open mid-May through mid-October, because the site’s remote location requires a 40-mile long access road that isn’t maintained through the winter months.

The Park is located in northern Arizona in the western US.

cherokee_hiking_1133_522_80_s_c1Great Smoky Mountain National Park click here – straddles the North Carolina/Tennessee state border in the Appalachian Mountain chain in the eastern US.   Part of the Appalachian Hiking Trail is on the ridge that forms the state boundary.

The Park is relatively close to major population centers & as a result is the most visited park in the System.
delicate archesBArches National Park click here – has arguably the most vivid examples of wind/water erosion in the world. Different formations depict the gradual erosion of sedimentary rock over eons of time.

“Delicate Arch” is the most iconic of the many arches in the Park & is the symbol on the Utah license plate. You can reach it in a 3 mile [4.8 km] hike up slick rock – with an elevation change of 480 ft.  It’s well worth the effort, but pack plenty of water for the trip! The trip takes about 2.5 hours.

The park is located north of Moab, UT.