National Trails Day

Happy National Trails Day today!  Today kicks off the Great Outdoors Month of June!

Did you know that there are over 18,000 miles of trails in the national park system? And did you know that there are 158,000 miles of trails in national forests and grasslands? So, we have lots of trails to explore in the United States!

Enjoy this day and month and find a trail to enjoy!  Happy National Trails Day! 

Wildflowers!

Last Sunday, we checked out the wildflowers blooming out in here in Northern California and the flowers did not disappoint!

Located about 10 miles north of Oroville, California, the North Table Mountain Ecological Reserve provided the amazing views along their trails of these wildflowers.

These 3,300 acres created by ancient lava flows provide beautiful vistas of these wildflowers, waterfalls, lava outcrops, and a rare type of vernal pool, called Northern Basalt Flow Vernal Pools.

It’s a popular area right now due to the blooms, so be prepared to park a distance and to take a ton of photos.

Loved seeing these wildflowers in bloom and getting out in nature with the family!

Day Trip!

Last week, we journeyed to Yosemite National Park for the day. The kids had last week off and we needed a day out in nature! And nature did not disappoint!

We took the kids on four hikes and the lucked out on the last one with no crowds. We started the hike to Mirror Lake around 4pm and owned the trail. It can be hard to get away from people in Yosemite, but staying later paid off!

We had a really great day and loved spending a long day in a national park!

For a recent blog post about Yosemite National Park, click here.

New Backpack

A few weeks ago, I discovered a company that creates colorful backpacks. I love color! I am so drawn to anything colorful and it always makes me smile. I was that little girl always drawing rainbows. Don’t tell anyone, but I still draw them! 🌈

Cotopaxi makes these colors backpacks (and other colorful items). As I scrolled through their web site, their backpacks all made me smile. While I love the colors, I also love the uniqueness to each one. They’re all different. I had needed a new backpack and found a ton of choices.

I fell in love with Cotopaxi’s Del Dia Collection. This collection uses fabric leftover from other companies’ large production runs made in the Philippines. I love that this keeps perfectly good materials out of the landfill and reuses them for something fun.

After many clicks and moments of indecision, I decided on this one.

Once I received it, I tested it out on a hike with my dog and really enjoy it! It’s comfortable and has all the needed pockets. Most of all, I love all the colors!

It’s a rainbow day every day! 🌈😊

National Trails System Act

The National Trails System Act created the National Trails System back today in 1968.  The Act created national trails to promote the enjoyment and appreciation of trails while encouraging greater public access.

The Act established four classes of trails: national scenic trails, national historic trails, national recreation trails, and side or connecting trails.

The first two national scenic trails established under the Act were the Appalachian and the Pacific Crest trails. These two trails cover almost 5,000 miles between the two trails and go through some of our nation’s most beautiful areas.

IMG_6701

Today, the system consists of 30 National Scenic and Historic Trails and over 1,000 National Recreation Trail and two connecting-and-side trails, with a total length of more than 50,000 miles.

I love maps, so had to share one! Click here for a map of all the trails in the system.

To celebrate this 52nd anniversary, go and get out on a trail today!

IMG_3415

Wilderness Act

On this day 56 years ago, Congress established the Wilderness Act in 1964. Congress wanted to protect undeveloped and wild areas as an enduring resource for the American people. Today, this act protects 111 million acres of wilderness preserving more than 750 wilderness areas in states from Alaska to Florida.

This act created the National Wilderness Preservation System (NWPS) and immediately designated 54 areas into this system.  Some of the first wilderness areas created included Bridger Wilderness in Wyoming, Ansel Adams Wilderness in California, and Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in Minnesota. Today, the National Park Service makes up about 56% of the land under NWPS with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, and Bureau of Land Management areas making up the rest.

Many benefits exist today from this land conservation including providing habitats for wildlife; clean air; clean drinking water; boosting local economies with tourism and recreation; and providing some really amazing places to escape and appreciate this great land here!

Go enjoy this anniversary and get out in the wilderness today!

Hiking Stick

Since March, we have spent lots of time at home. And spent plenty of time dreaming of hiking and traveling again. To help get excited for future hikes, I made this fun hiking stick.  I have some real hiking poles, but thought it would be a fun activity to paint my own hiking stick.

My kids found this stick in our yard and discarded it for being too big for their project at the time.  I checked out the stick and it was a perfect size for hiking.

This stick was pretty smooth and didn’t need sanding, but some others might need to be sanded. I painted the sections and later sprayed it with a sealer. I opted with a colorful, rainbow look, but you could do any colors and patterns. You could even add stickers, ribbons, or other decorations to make it your own style.

Just thought I’d share a fun (and easy) hiking activity to do at home!

Muir Woods

Happy 112th anniversary to Muir Woods National Monument!

On January 9, 1908, President Theodore Roosevelt created the Muir Woods National Monument named after conservationist John Muir. Muir Woods became the 7th National Monument and was the first one created from land donated by a private individual.

Muir Woods lies in the middle of the redwood’s latitudinal range that spans from the California/Oregon border to Big Sur, just south of Monterey. And it is quite easy to get to from San Francisco!

Muir Woods is a great place to see some amazing redwood trees, check out the history here, and take in a few hikes! If you’re in the Bay Area, I highly recommend that you check out Muir Woods National Monument!

muir woods

Devils Postpile National Monument

A couple of weekends ago, we headed away for the weekend to Mammoth Lakes in California.

Fall in the mountains just rocks! I love the cool, mountain, fresh air and cold temperatures once the sun goes down.

While there, we originally talked about doing a day in Yosemite. But, we decided to check out Devils Postpile National Monument instead and could not be more happy with our decision!

We started our day there enjoying a hike to Rainbow Falls. Gotta love a 101 foot high waterfall and one that reflects rainbows! 🌈

The trail intersects with the PCT and JMT which is pretty cool to see a tiny bit of those two iconic trails.

After the hike, we took a bus over to the Devils Postpile ranger station. Our kids got their junior ranger books there.

We hiked to see the Devils Postpile. Pretty cool to see the lava formations in the mountain and know how many years ago it all happened. It reminds you of the magnitude of earth and time here compared to us little humans.

Established as a national monument in 1911, this is really cool to see in person!

Our daughter’s little stuffed friend joined us in the national monument as well!

While lesser known than the nearby Yosemite National Park, Devils Postpile National Monument is definitely worth a visit!

National Trails System Act

The National Trails System Act created the National Trails System back today in 1968.  The Act created national trails to promote the enjoyment and appreciation of trails while encouraging greater public access.

The Act established four classes of trails: national scenic trails, national historic trails, national recreation trails, and side or connecting trails.

The first two national scenic trails established under the Act were the Appalachian and the Pacific Crest trails. These two trails cover almost 5,000 miles between the two trails and go through some of our nation’s most beautiful areas.

IMG_6701

Today, the system consists of 30 National Scenic and Historic Trails and over 1,000 National Recreation Trail and two connecting-and-side trails, with a total length of more than 50,000 miles.

Check out this video made last year for the 50th anniversary. It’s less than a minute! Click here.

I love maps, so had to share one! Click here for a map of all the trails in the system.

To celebrate this 51st anniversary, go and get out on a trail today!

IMG_3415