9 minutes to read — 1845 words
Posts Tagged: united-states
Once the capital of Russian Alaska, Sitka is now a gorgeous town nestled among the islands of the Inside Passage. Surrounded by green hills, then larger mountains and icecaps to the east, and the ocean and smaller islands to the west, Sitka is usually listed among the prettiest towns in Alaska, and often among the prettiest in America. I was supposed to visit on my last trip to Alaska, but bad weather delayed our flights, and we had to skip the town altogether.
11 minutes to read — 2245 words
I’ve spent two summers in Alaska, and a week on the Inside Passage, but I still jump at any opportunity to return to the state. The early summer of 2021 was an unusual time to visit, as much of the state had reopened after the COVID-19 pandemic, but the cruise ships that bring most of the state’s tourists still weren’t permitted to sail. We arrived in Skagway on a Wednesday evening and checked into the Black Bear Inn.
4 minutes to read — 765 words
Hawaii is an incredibly special place. Those lucky enough to visit are overwhelmed with far too many excellent options, but one of the best is Kona, also known as Hawai’i or the “Big Island.” Its combination of volcanoes and beaches is unmatched. I visited with my family in the winter of 2020. One of the early highlights of our trip was the hike out to Kīholo Bay. The walk takes you past the Queen’s Bath, a freshwater pool bored dramatically into the volcanic rock.
9 minutes to read — 1789 words
I’ve always been curious about Maine, but I’d never had an opportunity to visit. I’d planned a trip to Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic for the fall of 2020, but then the COVID-19 pandemic struck. Americans weren’t allowed to travel to Europe, and our vacation fell through. Maine seemed like a good alternative: the state required that visitors be tested before arrival, and it had implemented safety policies at hotels, restaurants, and bars.
7 minutes to read — 1342 words
Tucked away in a corner of the John Muir Wilderness, Red Slate Mountain isn’t climbed all that frequently. That’s a shame, because it’s a fun climb, and the summit offers amazing views—at 13,129 feet, the only higher Sierra to the north is Mount Ritter (though some sources list Red Slate at 13,163’, which would make it higher than Ritter), and the next higher peak to the south is nine or ten miles away.
13 minutes to read — 2607 words
Contents Idaho Bend and Sunriver Oregon Coast Olympic Peninsula Orcas Island Idaho Landing at the small airport in the town of Hailey on an overcast Friday evening, I was reminded of just how beautiful Idaho’s mountains and valleys are. I hadn’t visited the state since a backpacking trip in 2004. That trip had been further north, in a much more remote region. This time I visited the charming town of Ketchum, near Sun Valley Resort.
6 minutes to read — 1206 words
I spent a weekend in late October touring two battlefields of the American Civil War with my wife and in-laws. We left Washington on a sunny Saturday morning and drove to Gettysburg. Fought from July 1 to July 3 of 1863, Gettysburg is often considered the turning point of the war. Robert E. Lee brought his Army of Northern Virginia, composed of about 75,000 men, to meet George G. Meade’s Army of the Potomac, with about 104,000 men.
6 minutes to read — 1091 words
Lying between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians, the Shenandoah Valley is a stunning place brimming with natural beauty, historic towns, wineries, and breweries. I visited twice during October 2017, on two different fall weekends. My first stop was the Purple Wolf Vineyard. The vineyard lies on the White Oak Lavender farm, a delightfully pastoral spot west of Shenandoah National Park off of Highway 81. The vineyard has both indoor and outdoor seating, and sitting outside was perfect on an unseasonably warm October day.