Happy first day of winter! Is it snowing where you are? It’s raining here and going to be 55 degrees, which is unusually warm for my part of Washington state this time of year. Feels odd. It’s supposed to start getting chillier tomorrow.
The shot above was captured 3 years ago, in January, along Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park. I was trying out new snowshoes (and having a devil of a time with the straps), and of course lugging a loaded camera pack with me, so I ultimately did not get too very far. The view, nonetheless, was pretty nice. There were a few cross-country skiers who zipped on past me that morning, but overall, not many others venturing outside, which was just fine by me.
Even though it’s a Monday, I hope your first day of winter is a good one.
Good morning! Where is the road going to take you, today? To work? To home? To a national park? To adventure and places unknown? Where ever the road takes you, please drive safely.
The road, in two weeks, will take me to the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument in Oregon. I’m looking forward to that as it will be my first long trip of the year. I don’t know if any part of the road will be as misty and mysterious as this road leading through the Quinault Rain Forest in Olympic National Park, but I do believe there will be some interesting scenery along the way.
I haven’t been to Oregon in probably 30 years, give or take, so it will be nice to see that beautiful state again. My father’s mother lived for many years along the Oregon coast. It was her favorite place – her happy place, just like living near the mountains is for me. When she died, my parents poured her ashes on a beach along the Oregon coast, then put moss agates around the ashes in a circle, since Granny was an avid “rockhound.”
As for this image, well, you know I like photographing leading lines. And leading lines don’t have to be straight. They can be curvy, too. A leading line is whatever takes your eye from one part of the photo to another, like a fence, a treeline, a line of buildings, a trail, or a boardwalk.
Here’s a little bit of trivia for you on this Fun Fact Friday:
Workers blasted through 5,613 feet of vertical sandstone rock to create the 1.1-mile Mt. Carmel tunnel on the Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway in Zion National Park. There is, indeed, light at the end of the tunnel and it’s spectacular.
The road to the desert, Big Bend National Park, Texas
And just where will that road take you this weekend? Perhaps some of you have taken Friday off to make it a nice, 4-day weekend? Certainly enough time for a short visit to a national park like Big Bend National Park, in Texas. It’s in a remote part of southwest Texas, but it’s definitely worth a visit, with great landscapes, interesting desert and mountain ecosystems, neat birdlife, and wonderful geology. Just take plenty of water with you.
I’m headed off, myself, to Stehekin, WA, this weekend, for a few days exploring Lake Chelan National Recreation Area and North Cascades National Park.
The long, dusty road through the park, Denali National Park & Preserve
Happy Monday! Hope the beginning of the workweek for the majority of you doesn’t feel like a long dusty road toward the next weekend.
This shot was taken a few years prior, during a trip I took to this national park. This was captured on a bus at the end of my stay there, on the day we were heading back to the visitor center. The road through the park is 92 miles long and gravel for most of the way, so the trip itself takes about 3-4 hours, including any stops along the way for photos.
Twenty-one years ago, I moved from Washington State down to southeast Texas to be with my aging parents. Found a job, found a nice (but old) apartment right next door to my parents, got really involved in photography and did a fair amount of traveling to see and photograph many neat things, thanks to the salary from that job.
I never really felt like Texas was home, though. I was born in Montana; I’m a mountain gal. I told Mom and Dad when I moved that I would never spend the rest of my life in Texas and ultimately, I would move back to the mountains.
In 2 days, I’ll be hitting the open road from southeast Texas *back* to Washington State. I’m done with Texas. And I’m pretty certain Texas is done with me; I am not a Texan.
My home is packed except for a few items that I’ll box up before the movers arrive. I’ve scheduled all the disconnects. I will have to return my ATT internet equipment (insert sad-face emoji). I need to run a few other errands. But, I’m ready! My cameras are ready! My car is ready – well, it should be ready after a tuneup, replacement of some things, new tires, and a new windshield (don’t ask, it’s one of those unforeseen things that happened the other day).
I have a road trip itinerary mapped that will take me almost 4 weeks to complete (provided nothing unforeseen occurs). It will be like the 4-week vacations my family used to take in the camper every summer when I was a little girl. I’m stopping at national parks I’ve never visited and a national park I have visited. I’ll be seeing a couple of friends along the way, as well. I’m calling this Becky’s Big Road Trip.
I’ll be taking you all along with me via my photos, so stay tuned.
A view of Going-to-the-Sun road from the Highline Trail in Glacier National Park
Yahoo! Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park is now officially cleared of snow and open for the 2018 summer season to vehicles in all of its 50-mile stretch, as of June 23rd, 2018.
For those of you who have never visited Glacier National Park and driven along this National Historic Landmark for views of some of the most stunning scenery within a national park, it’s quite a feat to plow the snow from this road every year, starting in early spring. Usually, the road is open either at the end of June or sometimes, in early-mid July. So June 23rd is pretty early.
The history of this road is quite interesting, and if you want to read about it, click on the photo above. The article is a little dated, but the history and trivia remains the same.
Roads get us to and through the national parks we love to visit, like the Going-To-The-Sun road pictured here, that bisects the park from east to west (or west to east) and takes us through some of the finest mountain scenery in the Lower 48 (imho).
Speaking of roads, if you are of a mind to read the latest national park news, such as the coming opening of the Tioga Road in Yosemite National Park, or the latest explosive activity at Kilauea in Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, or where you should pitch your tent or park your RV within a national park, then go on over to the National Parks Traveler and read all about it.
Just a little reminder that the Chihuahuan desert can be a dangerous place. I was driving toward the Chisos Mountains and noticed ahead of me what looked like a traffic jam. As I got closer, I noticed the truck was a National Park Service truck. I drove slowly and glanced to the right side of the road to see one very angry snake lunging at my car as I passed by (look at the lower left of this photo).
In my single-minded pursuit to photograph the beauty of the park, this was a reminder to me to be ever-observant of the more venomous side of the desert.
All images on these posts are the exclusive property of Rebecca L. Latson and Where The Trails Take You Photography. Please respect my copyright and do not use these images on Pinterest, Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram, Snapchat or any other business, personal or social website, blog site, or other media without my written permission. Thank you.
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