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What is your favorite national park and why?

What is your favorite national park and why?

Old Jun 17, 2015, 6:55 pm
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What is your favorite national park and why?

When I was a teenager, my parents took up tent camping. They organized several trips around visits to national parks. I've seen a few as an adult, but not many. Suddenly, I find myself immersed in organizing visits to several of them.

Yellowstone - went two years ago and loved it, both the varied scenery and the range of animals. I want to return.

Yosemite - I just visited for the first time. We live in San Diego so it is only a six hour drive or so. (We flew into Fresno using BA Avios on the AS flight for just 4,500 points one way.) Stunning! Absolutely breathtaking scenery. I can't believe we never visited before.

Death Valley - we plan to visit late fall when the temperatures drop. We've driven thru some 40 years or so ago when it was 120 plus.

Zion, Bryce and Capital Reef, all in southern Utah - went 20 years or so ago and were blown away by their stunning beauty, each different from the other and yet geographically so close. We always meant to return and will finally do so next year.

Here is a list of all the US National Parks. Which do you think should be on everyone's sightseeing list?
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Old Jun 18, 2015, 8:49 pm
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Big Bend.

Arches.
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Old Jun 18, 2015, 9:02 pm
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I've been a Rocky Mountain Nat'l Park many times and love it.

One of the most peaceful, to me, is Acadia. I love hiking miles and miles there.

So many other great ones....
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Old Jun 20, 2015, 4:39 pm
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Wind Caves. It's an incredible thing to tour underground caves and the guides there are great. Plus, the scenery around it is stunning and you can see bison and numerous other animals. It's also really remote and as long as you stay away from Mt. Rushmore, you won't encounter many other people.

If we can count National Monuments I also really liked Organ Pipe.
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Old Jun 20, 2015, 4:55 pm
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Been to quit a few; the image of Crater Lake sticks in my head most. It looks like the story book home of a sorcerer.

Last edited by Fleck; Jun 20, 2015 at 5:18 pm
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 2:18 am
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I've done a few of them across the country (Acadia, Badlands, Glacier, Grand Canyon, Grand Teton, Great Smoky Mountains, Hawaii Volcanoes, Kings Canyon, Sequoia, Shenandoah, Yellowstone, and Yosemite) but two of them stand out for me.

Kings Canyon - Was traveling with a high school classmate to Yosemite and we decided to stop at Kings Canyon on our way back to my place in Palmdale. We could have spent all day there due to the beautiful scenery. Actually, we spent so much time there we zoomed through Sequoia though I had seen it a few months earlier myself. We just saw so many beautiful vistas with the water flowing over the rocks.

Shenandoah - Used to camp on Skyline Drive every October at the peak of leaf season with former work colleagues from Lynchburg. Was the absolute best time to do it.
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 2:44 am
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Originally Posted by Fleck
Been to quit a few; the image of Crater Lake sticks in my head most. It looks like the story book home of a sorcerer.
Can't believe it's been 5 years since I was last there. Maybe I'll drive up this year after the summer is done and combine it with Lassen.





More Crater Lake National Parkphotos here: http://tom911.smugmug.com/Travel-USA...Park/i-CrqmqFG

I still hit Lassen Volcanic National Park every couple years. Used to camp there or at nearby Burney Falls State Park pretty regularly. Didn't make it up to the top of Lassen Peak last time, but then I'm getting a little older, too, making it more of a challenge than years past.





More Lassen Volcanic National Park photos in two galleries:
http://tom911.smugmug.com/Travel-USA...onal/i-HRQF3kf
http://tom911.smugmug.com/Travel-USA...onal/i-Hfvn4sx
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 8:39 am
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I have been to many of the National Parks.... but three truly stand out:

1. Glacier Bay, Alaska. Cruising through Glacier Bay is one of the most awe inspiring experiences. We will be doing it again in August.

2. Hawaii Volcano. If you are fortunate enough to be there when lava is flowing.... it is truly amazing. Such power from nature.

3. Haleakalā. The drive up/down this volcano gives many amazing vistas. The view from the top is so beautiful that you forget where you are for a moment!
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 9:03 am
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Checked the list, and have been to 25 of the listed parks.

I think the top 5 for me (in no particular order, and because I just could not narrow it any further) would be Kenai Fjords, Denali, Yosemite, North Cascades and Yellowstone.

Kenai Fjords -- incredible glaciers and biodiversity, birds, mammals, eagles, etc.

Denali -- again, for the animals almost as much, if not more so than the physical beauty.

Yosemite -- the most physically spectacular place I have ever been.

North Cascades -- the closest to a completely unspoiled wilderness I have ever experienced. Close encounter with a wolverine - one of the rarest animals in North America.

Yellowstone. No place like it on earth. other-worldly.
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 12:58 pm
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I really appreciate everyone's posts. I'm picking up some ideas for where I should travel. King's Canyon is driving distance for us. Yet I've never visited. We tried to visit Glacier, but it was closed by snow. Looking at tom911's pictures, we should try again, paying better attention to weather. And there are others further afield we should visit again or for the first time. We are so blessed with the diverse nature we have in this country.
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 2:14 pm
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The national parks are truly America's treasure. My favorite is probably Grand Teton National Park. Its amazing to me that size-wise, it really isn't that big compared to many of the others and yet there's so many different experiences you can have there, from serious climbing to kayaking Jenny Lake to a 5 day backpacking trip to skiing. GTNP is one of the only reasons I look forward to visiting family in Eastern Idaho each year.
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 2:19 pm
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I grew up in Alaska so have a special place in my heart for Denali, Kenai Fjords, and also Glacier Bay. Some of my best memories of my dad come from visits to Denali every summer.

Also loved Hawaii Volcanoes.

I still have a lot of other National Parks I need to visit so I'm taking notes too.
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Old Jun 30, 2015, 2:46 pm
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One of the big holes in my NP experience so far has been the Utah parks -- Arches, Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef. Hoping to get to those sometime in the next couple of years.

There are incredible national monuments too, worth visiting. (First visited Pinnacles, in CA, when it was still a monument.)

Unfortunately, I live in NJ, which has no NP or NM.
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Old Jul 1, 2015, 1:18 pm
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North Cascades (The US's version of the Swiss Alps)

Sequoia & Kings Canyon (I'm more partial to the Sequoia side myself)

Yosemite

Grand Tetons
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Old Jul 8, 2015, 10:38 pm
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Grand Canyon - North Rim

Far more secluded and less crowded than the South. Quieter, less polluted, more spectacular viewpoints. Cape Royal is one of my favorite spots on Earth. Even the drive south to the rim along Hwy 67 is breathtaking. We even saw buffalo grazing alongside the road last summer.
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