Road Trips

Roadtrip to SW National Parks: Arches, Canyonlands, Grand Canyon in Utah and Arizona

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If you frequent this blog, you probably know I am obsessed with road trips. There’s just something about being stuck in a car with an infinite supply of music, snacks, and long stretches of roads that puts me in my happiest mood. Last week, Dillon and I were trying to stay in good spirits by finding a mid-week hike off mountain loop highway, before someone mentioned the weather forecast… Of a week straight of RAIN.

We weren’t having it.

So we flipped the car around and drove back to service to start planning the fastest route out of the PNW. We talked about wanting to visit the Grand Canyon soon so we decided, hey. Let’s just drive there!

A few hours later, we had my Mazda CX 5 packed up for her first big road trip, and for this trip we weren't leaving Meadow behind! (She stayed home back when we went to Idaho in February.)

We drove about 14 hours straight and decided on this Itinerary after finding The Mangagies blog. They helped us create the best trip ever and I am so thankful and inspired by them. Be sure to give them a follow!

  1. Canyonlands National Park

  2. Arches National Park

  3. Monument Valley

  4. Grand Canyon

  5. Page, Arizona

  6. Bryce Canyon

  7. Meadow, UT

  8. Goldbug Hot Springs

  9. Coeur D’Alene

Canyonlands National Park looks like it was a replica of an old western movie set. Deep canyons carved by the Colorado river are found throughout the park, and we had such a great time exploring places like Mesa Arch before heading to our first campsite. We used iOverlander to find some sweet free sites on BLM land.

Gilly suit or mossy shrub? you decide. Canyonlands national park Mesa Arch
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Campsite at Canyonlands National Park
Making a fire at our campsite at Canyonlands National Park

Dillon grilled us some steaks for dinner, set up camp, and we enjoyed a rainfly-free tent and watched the stars before falling asleep. We woke up to a few raindrops in the middle of the night— but it was worth it! We packed everything out, and continued on to Arches National Park!

This was one of my favorite days. Everything about Arches is so stunning! These nature-made sculptures seem like they can crumble at any moment!

I really loved the walk to Sand Dune Arch! Check out how insane this is!

When flipping through our park map, I marveled at the photos of Landscape Arch, but was concerned for Meadow at this point— because dogs aren’t allowed on most trails at the National Parks we were taking turns staying with her in the car or leaving it running with the A/C. So Dillon hung back while I did the 1.2 mile walk and saw this beauty for myself. It didn’t disappoint!

We wrapped up this part of Utah with a Navajo Taco and headed down to the Grand Canyon South Rim. We were debating which entrance we could go to but since we decided to skip camping at Monument Valley so we can get to Page, AZ we decided this was ultimately the easiest stop on our route. We heard from some bikers that the North Rim is much more interesting to visit— so keep that in mind if you are deciding North Rim vs. South Rim for the Grand Canyon.

Personally I thought this place didn’t compare to the beauty of Bryce Canyon National Park. But we had fun stopping at all the viewpoints and finally checking it off our Bucket Lists! This picture I took of Dillon and Meadow makes my heart melt. <3

Cute boy and cute dog at Bryce Canyon National Park

I loved all the hoodoos casting shadows in the early morning light. We did a part of the Queens Garden Trail and I highly recommend it.

On the drive back home, we stopped at two hot springs in Meadow, UT and in Elk Bend, ID. We had both of them to ourselves because I talked Dillon into driving while I entertained myself with taking countless photos of Meadow and growing our roadtrip playlist on Spotify.

The crazy amazing thing about Goldbug was that this was the hot spring we DIDN’T get to see on our Idaho road trip— and I’m so happy we decided to take this route so I could finally see this place. Everything was pure magic.

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One of our favorite parts about the road trip was finding this post about 101 things to ask your friends on a road trip. We we’re inspired to make up some of our own questions and post our favorites, which you can find below!

Questions to uncover on a roadtrip with friends

  1. What accomplishment are you most proud of?

  2. Favorite movie of all time? (Check out some of my favorite adventure movies here!)

  3. Which of your friends are you proudest of? Why?

  4. Have you ever been skinny dipping?

  5. What’s the most beautiful place you’ve ever been?

  6. What’s your favorite snack to eat?

  7. If you were a cloud, what shape would you be?

  8. If you could live in any TV home, what would it be?

  9. If you were a tough guy/girl (opposite sex) what would your name be?

  10. What’s the first thing you do when you get home from a trip?

  11. Who would you love to punch in the face?

  12. How different was your life one year ago?

  13. Auntie Annie’s or Cinnabon?

  14. What was the best toy of the 90s?

  15. What has been your most expensive Uber ride?

  16. What is your go-to dance move?

  17. What has been your favorite photo you’ve taken?

Read the full post here!

Portland Must Do's: Food. Drink. See. Mississippi, Alberta, and SE Neighborhoods!

Portland Must Do's: Food. Drink. See. Mississippi, Alberta, and SE Neighborhoods!

Dumping ground for all the best places to eat, drink, see, do, hike in Portland! Here are some of the best spots to get coffee, get your happy hour on, play a game on a date, or adventure around the city of bridges and beer!

Our Idaho Hot Springs Road Trip that Demands a Redo (Thanks Snowpocalypse 2019)

Our Idaho Hot Springs Road Trip that Demands a Redo (Thanks Snowpocalypse 2019)

We drove out of Seattle’s Snowpocalypse to escape to some warm hot springs in Idaho. We visited Gold Folk Hot Springs, Weir Hot Springs and Jerry Johnson Hot Springs. Thankfully the road to Gold Fork is pretty well-plowed so the snow didn’t make it too difficult to get up 4 miles. Admission is 10 dollars—make sure to bring cash! They have four different pools, with the top being the hottest around 108°. The sun even came out for a bit here, and we soaked until I turned into a Raison and we headed back to McCall for some lunch at Southside Grill.

Huacachina, A Desert Oasis in Peru

Huacachina, A Desert Oasis in Peru

We had just spent a week trekking in Peru we were ready for some relaxation, so we decided to fly to Huacachina, a desert oasis! Once we arrived at the Lima Airport we used their free 30 minute airport wifi to figure out how to get to Cruz Del Sur Bus Terminal to Ica, and six hours later we made it to Huacachina!

The Yoga Culture: Should You Plan a Trip to Nusa Penida? Spontaneous vs. Planned

The Yoga Culture: Should You Plan a Trip to Nusa Penida? Spontaneous vs. Planned

Sometimes travel really does need planning ahead of time and putting in a little bit of extra time researching your destinations to make the memorable adventures seem as seamless, safe, and dreamlike as they really are. Here are some tips when planning a trip to Nusa Penida, including the Kelingling Beach hike and most importantly… HELMETS!

Bend Roadtrip: Broken Top Crater and Smith Rock State Park

Bend Roadtrip: Broken Top Crater and Smith Rock State Park

We took a road trip from Portland to Bend to explore, brunch, climb some mountains, and finally explore Smith Rock State Park. We hiked Broken Top Crater to No Name Lake, be warned this road is definitely an adventure of it’s own. 4x4 vehicle is RECOMMENDED!

Austrian Alps: Road Trip to Hallstatt from Prague

Austrian Alps: Road Trip to Hallstatt from Prague

Official Hello Adventure Co. Guide to Roadtriping in Austria! In February 2018, we rented a cute little Skoda and drove from Prague through Austria and Germany, visiting the beautiful towns of Halstatt and Rothenburg ob der Tauber.

Our Weekend in Colorado: Denver, Boulder, Golden and More

Our Weekend in Colorado: Denver, Boulder, Golden and More

we found a lot of reasons to fall in love this weekend. Four days wasn't enough time to try everything and we will definitely be back. If you're looking for cool restaurants to eat, fun bars to dance, or places to explore around Denver this is the post for you.

New Zealand Feelin: Avalanche Peak

New Zealand Feelin: Avalanche Peak

If you can't tell, I'm missing travel like crazy. I would give almost anything to be back in the southern alps with these stunning views. #newzealandfeelin is something I wanted to start for adventurers of all stages to collect inspiration for future travels, or if you just want to relive your favorite memories. Share with me your favorite photos and help cure my wanderlust. 🙏🏼

Olympic Peninsula

Olympic Peninsula

We took the ferry to Kingston and drove passed Port Angles up to Hurricane Ridge. We had a beautiful 17 mile drive up the mountain road with plenty of places to stop and appreciate the scenery. We weren't quite ready to wrap up our trip, so we looked up other nearby places and I discovered WTA (Washington Trail Association) which allows you to access trip reports and nearby trails and parks.

Montana Road trip: Olloclip adventures

This weekend was purely brilliant and I am still in a daze from it. I packed completely wrong and slept most of the car ride, while the boys jammed to heavy metal and rock music. (I'm a very heavy sleeper.) Nevertheless here are some great photos on the drive up there. We stopped quite a few times to take some photos. (Okay, maybe more than a few) I also got to try out my new Olloclip, which is so neat! It's a lens you attach to your iphone to take fisheye, macro, and wide angle shots. Really highlights the beautiful camera power that Apple has designed. Here is a photo of me using it:

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And here are some shots I liked:

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Our next stop was near spokane area, right off the highway the sun was going down and we found brilliant shadows created by the trees. These are some of my favorite shots, ever.

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This is my glamorous friend, Nick.

I'll post our adventures that we had when we got to Montana later on. In the meantime I am still trying to locate all my essentials that got lost in Pete (the rabbit) on the car ride back home. This was after as we were leaving. Pretty huh?

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Mount Pilchuck Jeep Adventure

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Spur of the moment, "lets go on an adventure" with three of my friends. Blasting Blink 182, uplifting dirt and exploring the good old PNW.

My cute bestie and her guy!

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I no longer have the video file, but this video I posted on this day never fails to take away my stress, I revisit it all the time. http://statigr.am/viewer.php#/detail/499564507990920868_198208138

Finished up the evening with a large dinner at an unknown mexican restauruant with a gay waiter who bought my friends boyfriend a margarita.

Reminscing the Past: Crescent Bar

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One of those memories that was purely awesome primarily because of the people you were with. This was last summer, when all of my best friends went on a roadtrip to Crescent Bar to see John Mayer at the Gorge.

We stayed at Wild Horse Campground in George, Wa. I was pretty impressed with how our campsite turned out (Photo below). A tip for you all: DON'T FORGET LIGHT. We spent every night in the dark because someone forgot the lantern. (Not pointing fingers though!)

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The drive down was amazing. We took the scenic route, stopping at Snoqualmie Falls. Also drove passed these awesome wind towers. Live it.

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Overall was an awesome trip. With awesome friends!