Category Archives: North America

Fort Bowie National Historic Site – June 2020

Fort Bowie entrance

Another day trip! Feels so good to be out and about. The target of this trip was Fort Bowie National Historic Site, ruins of the Army fort that existed for 20+ years in the late 1800s. First stops included birding at the Benson sewage ponds (birders go to all the best places!) and the Twin Lakes Golf Course in Willcox. Then it was onto Fort Bowie, on probably the hottest day of the year. From the trailhead it’s a 1.5 mile hike to the ruins of the fort, with interpretive signs along the way. The visitors’ center was closed, but we were able to refill bottles there, and relax on their porch with our picnic lunch.

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Chiricahua National Monument – June 2020

At Massai Point

2020 has been a challenging year so far. We did enjoy a wonderful trip to Chile and Argentina in January, but then COVID-19 upended everyone’s existence. Planned trips to Portugal and Spain (April) and Colombia (June) were rescheduled to 2021, and staying home became the norm.Β And while we’re luckier than most, in that we live in a rural area and it’s easy to enjoy outdoor activities such as biking and hiking while social distancing, by June we were getting pretty antsy and just wanting to go *somewhere*. So, off we drove to the Chiricahua National Monument, a couple of hours away, on a much-needed day trip. Somehow, going to a national park just says “vacation”!

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Arizona and Utah Parks – Oct 2019

Robert, Liza, Joanne, and Mark in Bluff, UT

October we were on the road, once again with Brooklyn friends Mark and Joanne Guralnick, for more national and state parks, national monuments, etc. The main goal on this trip was to get to three in southern Utah that have long been on the bucket list, and somehow we’d never gotten there: Capitol Reef, Arches, and Canyonlands. But as always seems to happen on a driving trip, we tried to cram as many other locations in as we could! And we did much better on this trip understanding the geology along the way.

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Arkansas – Sept 2019

Alpha and Liza at Flyway Brewing in Little Rock

We finally managed a trip back to Arkansas in coordination with Liza’s mother Alpha, to spend some time with family, but also to see some sights that had escaped us on many prior visits. We met up with Alpha in Dallas (thank you American Airlines for neither flight being late) and continued on to Little Rock. After telling the rental car company no, we don’t really want the behemoth SUV to drive down the road (seriously, a choice between an Expedition and an Armada … what are we, the Spanish off in search of gold?) we stopped in for “dinner” at the Flyway Brewing Company in Little Rock before continuing on to Hot Springs.

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Princeton Wedding, Cape May, and More! – Oct 2018

Richard and Cindy / Emily Wren Photography

In October we were delighted to attend the wedding of Richard Wanerman and Cindy Drakeman in Princeton NJ. (Richard’s father Rob is Robert’s second cousin.) And since we were “in the area”, it was a perfect chance to get to another national park (Valley Forge National Historical Park) and to go birding down in Cape May, at the very southern tip of New Jersey, home to the famous Hawk Watch.

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Montana, Wyoming, and Utah National Parks – Aug/Sep 2018

Running Eagle Falls, Glacier NP

As part of our continuing mission of “let’s see all the national parks” (must use Robert’s volunteer park pass, after all!), in August and September we visited three more biggies: Glacier National Park, Yellowstone National Park, and Grand Teton National Park, finishing off in Wyoming with a national monument (Fossil Butte) and in Utah, a national historic site (Golden Spike).

If you want to skip the narrative and just look at photos, click here.

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Sky Islands of West Texas – May 2017

Mexican (Couch’s) Jay

Last year on a driving trip to Dallas, we made a whirlwind visit of Big Bend National Park, Guadalupe Mountains National Park, and Carlsbad Caverns National Park…and knew we had to return. This May we did, spending a few days in each place so we could truly enjoy the natural beauty, not to mention the birds and wildlife. (And the food, and the beer, and…) Read about the landscapes, birds and other wildlife.

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More Southwest Parks – Oct 2016

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Bryce Canyon National Park

This driving trip of the southwest started out as a planned visit to Las Vegas NV for the Conservation Lands Foundation’s Friends Grassroots Network Rendezvous (big name for a gathering of conservation minded folks; we were there representing the Friends of the San Pedro River). It soon turned into a chance to see more national parks and monuments in Arizona, Nevada, and Utah – not to mention visiting cousins Bob and Pam Deichmeister in Prescott, AZ.

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