Beautiful Places

If you visit Maine there are two places that you will definitely not want to miss. We had already planned on staying in both of them, but especially after being told by many of the locals that they are the must see places in the state we really had to see for ourselves. These two places are Acadia National Park and Baxter State Park. Both of them were beautiful and we are so glad we had the opportunity to experience them. Not only were the places themselves beautiful, but we found some great campgrounds to stay in and made some new friends too. I feel fortunate to have had the chance to visit Maine, it is such a beautiful and natural place.

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Exploring Maine: Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park has a lot to offer and we enjoyed exploring it! Visiting Jordan Pond, Hiking Precipice Trail, and visiting the beach were fun, but the real challenge was taking the kids to the top of Mount Champlain. Watch us climb Bar Island, go on a scavenger hunt at the Wild Gardens, and then … Read more Exploring Maine: Acadia National Park

School on a Dam and a Troll Under a Bridge

The best part about our visit to north west img_4140Washington was the family. It was great to see everyone we got to see during our short visit. Our hosts were great and we were able to stay a little longer without hook ups than we normally can by using their kitchen and bathroom. (I will refrain from mentioning names since this is a public website and no one gave me the OK to mention them.) Someone amazing brought a bunch of food and a bunch of beers for us to feast on for our visit. One night we were able to get with different family members for a great dinner. Our kids had a blast with the animals, fort building, and meeting their relatives. When it was time to go, everyone was sad we couldn’t stay longer. We had reservations in San Diego though and it was going to be close getting all the way down the coast in time.
We managed to visit North Cascades National Park while we were in the area.

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Volcanic Tour

IMG_0545      There is a very large section of this country that is covered with evidence of many different volcanic eruptions, including lava tubes, caves, and miles of volcanic rocks.  Luckily many of these areas are also federally protected lands.  It is important to keep these areas protected as they help geologists to reveal so much about the history of the Earth as well as it’s formation and how it has changed over time.  Some of these areas include Northern California, Southern Oregon, Eastern Oregon, Central Idaho, and into South West Montana, and North West Wyoming.  We unintentionally happened upon this trail without really knowing that it even existed.
Our first national park visit was to Crater Lake.  This huge lake was IMG_0501created by a volcanic explosion that left it inactive.  It was amazing to see how big and clear it is, and it is also the deepest lake in the United States.  The island that is clearly visible on the western side of the lake still looks like a small volcano rising up from the depths.  There is only one place around the entire lake that you can hike down to the water because the sides are so steep.  We would have liked to take this hike, but did not want to have to carry a four year old all the way back up to the top, so we had to forgo this particular hike.  Fortunately, there are many other hikes within the park that are more kid friendly that we enjoyed.  The kids really enjoyed the Castle Crest Trail which took us through a meadow and over a stream where we walked along rocks through the water.  This was the first stop on the volcanic tour we still did realize we were embarking on.

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