Virtual National Park Tours

Did you know that you check out and take a virtual tour of some of the most popular national parks online? I know that I need an escape from everything going on right now and wanted to share it with others.

The National Park Service (NPS) has a great website with a ton of tours, videos, webcams, photos, articles, and other excellent resources.

First, I have to share my favorite national park, Yellowstone National Park. Click here to virtually tour parts of Yellowstone like the Mud Volcano area, the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Mammoth Springs, and some other areas. 

You can also check out another one of my favorites, the Grand Teton National Park, by clicking here.

Who has seen the 1977 movie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind?  The film used this unique tower in Devils Tower National Monument in Wyoming. You can visit it virtually and check out this distinct tower by clicking here.

I have always wanted to visit Denali National Park in Alaska. Click here to take a virtual tour of this national park.

Take a virtual tour of the Statue of Liberty National Monument in New York by clicking here.

The national park service has a ton of other online opportunities to virtually explore our national park treasures. Click here for NPS’s main page and search your interests.

Take a minute and enjoy our country’s beauty and treasures online. It will do wonders for the soul during these tough times right now.

 

 

National Grammar Day

Happy National Grammar Day! Yes, this is really National Grammar Day!

This particular holiday is only 12 years old.  Martha Brockenbrough created National Grammar Day in 2008. She is the founder of the Society for the Promotion of Good Grammar.  The English language has over a million words. Our language has some set rules and also has some debatable rules in it as well.  We have a holiday to celebrate this sometimes crazy grammar.

How do we celebrate this holiday?  It is quite easy.  Use proper grammar today! 😉  Or be crazy and purchase a style guide or grammar resource today!

Enjoy your words and Happy National Grammar Day!

America’s 1st

Happy 148th birthday to America’s first national park, Yellowstone National Park!

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“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page.” – Saint Augustine

Check out some of my previous posts about Yellowstone by clicking here and here.  There are more blog posts about Yellowstone on here that you can find by just searching my blog by Yellowstone if you’re itching to read more!

To celebrate, take a minute and mark a visit to this amazing national park on your calendars. Check it off your bucket lists as it is a must vacation in your life!

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Cheers to 148 years!

101!

Happy 101 years to the Grand Canyon National Park!

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President Teddy Roosevelt urged Americans to protect this great canyon, “What you can do is keep it for your children, your children’s children, and for all who come after you, as one of the great sights which every American should see.”

For more information on this park, check out a previous blog by clicking here.

If you visit Las Vegas or Arizona, take the time and check out this grand national park! Definitely worth the time and journey!

Cheers to 101 years!

Wishtree

I just finished reading Wishtree written by Katherine Applegate. Fantastic book! I’m not surprised as I loved The One and Only Ivan also authored by Katherine Applegate.

In this novel, the author uses nature to tackle prejudice through the most beautiful use of words.

Red is the neighborhood oak tree that people place their wishes onto via a tie and cloth once a year. Red and his animal buddies have seen a lot over the years. In fact, Red has 216 rings on him.

I love the voice the author gives Red and his buddies to help out a new family to the area and grant a wish.  As I read this book, I felt the oak tree’s feelings and wanted to give him a wish that I could grant.

“But sometimes things happen that aren’t so good. When they occur, I’ve learned that there’s not much you can do except stand tall and reach deep.”
― Katherine Applegate, Wishtree

After finishing the book, I stared at my own oak tree for some time wondering about his thoughts, memories, and wishes.

Highly recommend picking up this quick, but really beautiful read!

Charles Dickens

Happy birthday to Charles Dickens! This great novelist was born today in 1812.

He brought us with some of the most memorable fictional characters of all times and known as one of the greatest novelist of the Victorian Era.

My personal favorite Dickens classics is A Tale of Two Cities. I remember vividly reading this book in high school (many years ago) and struck by his use of the language and words. In particular, I love his opening! The images, the pace, the words just ring magic.

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”
Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities

To celebrate his birthday, pick up one his classics and enjoy it! Maybe enjoy it with a cup a tea!

 

Dreaming of…

On this February day, I sit distracted by thinking about bison jams. Yes, I said bison jams.

Last summer, we visited Yellowstone National Park and experienced (more than once) bison jams. If you ever visit this national park (while I highly recommend), you are bound to encounter this unique situation along on the park roads. It is literally what the name suggests – a bison (or many) strolling along the road causing traffic to pause or stop for some time.

These large animals will walk in front of your car, next to the car, or behind your car. They don’t have watches, so do not care about their pace or time of the day. They might play follow the leader or might butt heads. They might pause for a bite to eat next the road. They might even sit down for a nap.

Bison are amazing creatures. One of my favorites! American male bison weigh around 2,000 pounds!  Also, did you know that these huge mammals can run up to 35 mph? I wrote a previous blog about bison last year that you can read here if you’re interested in more bison information.

As I sit at my computer here, I keep picturing those bison jams from last summer. It’s a really amazing experience to have such a mammoth creature stroll by your car.

You can hear them breathe and snort. Our children could not believe these animals surrounded all these cars and just kept on their hike down the road.

I wonder what these animals think seeing all these cars with people inside holding some rectangle gadgets by the windows. I wonder if the bison like the paved roads or miss the entire area being unpaved. I wonder what bison dream about.

Back from my wonderings and dreams, go check out these unique visitor experiences in Yellowstone National Park. Trust me, it will stick with you beyond the moment.