No billboards. No brochure. No web site or Twitter feed. We had to do some sleuthing to track down Pando, the 106-acre aspen grove that ranks among the oldest and biggest living things on Earth.
How far would you travel to commune with some of the oldest trees on Earth? We traveled via “the loneliest road in America” from The Coastside on the San Francisco Peninsula to Nevada’s highest peak to have a look. Continue reading “Strolling among Nevada’s Bristlecone Ancients at Great Basin National Park”
Sometimes less is more. Consider the drive through Nevada on US Route 50, a stretch of highway Life magazine once dubbed “The Loneliest Road in America.”
Part 5 in a Series: The hike across Estancia Lazo to Mirador Las Torres was easy. The mile-long descent down the slippery schist-strewn bluff beneath the million-dollar view of Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park was not. Bring your trekking poles.
Part 4 in a series: Everyone needs to be alone sometimes, especially The Geek and even MontaraManDan. In Patagonia we each found a slice of solitude in the steep meadows and forests that rise above Estancia Helsingfors, a remote ranch at the edge of Argentina’s Los Glaciares National Park.
Part 3 in a series: If you want a selfie with the Patagonian peaks that make up Argentina’s iconic Fitz Roy massif, you have to earn it. Expect wind, rain and steep ascents. Watch out for stinging caterpillars and feral cows. Photo bombs by meandering cloud banks may drive you mad. Continue reading “Playing Hide & Seek with Fitz Roy in Patagonia; Beware of Stinging Caterpillars”
Part 2 in a series: Looking for a penguin colony with a view? Try “the end of the world” at the southern tip of Patagonia.
Part 1 in a series: Buenos Aries feels like a European city, but the only “palace” we toured was a 20th century office building inspired by “The Devine Comedy.” You won’t find grand cathedrals holding royal remains. Instead, look for the late political diva Eva Perón in a tiny rented crypt. Street protests, a legacy of 20th-century political upheaval, are a Plaza de Mayo staple. Beef? It’s what’s for dinner.
Part 3 and last in a series: No one visits North Carolina’s Outer Banks to go hiking. The narrow string of sandy barrier islands runs for 200 miles but never measures more than 3 miles between sound and sea. At 91 feet, Kill Devil Hill is the highest peak. Most nature trails stretch for less than a mile. We gave hiking a shot anyway. Continue reading “Meandering the Outer Banks with Ghost Crabs, Forest Spiders and Dread Pirate Diane”
Part 2 in a series: The iconic lighthouses standing watch along North Carolina’s Outer Banks protect a coastline known grimly as The Graveyard of the Atlantic. They are as beautiful as the coastal waters are deadly. We climbed three!
Part 1 in a series: How would you picture roving harems of wild mustangs on the beach at North Carolina’s Outer Banks? We visualized equine muscle and sinew stampeding across sun-drenched sand, hooves flashing to fend off predators and rivals, fiery eyes, flaring nostrils. We were wrong!
The innovators at the Djerassi research compound in the mountains above Palo Alto have little need for lab coats or goggles. You won’t find them crafting code in a bean bag chair or doing deals on napkins at Buck’s of Woodside. Djerassi is about innovation in art.
There’s nothing quite like perambulating the Crissy Field Promenade at The Presidio to lift your spirits, especially when San Francisco’s Wave Organ lets you down.
Continue reading “Crissy Field Promenade Rescues a Grand Day Out in San Francisco after Wave Organ Falls Flat”
Every mighty river has a humble beginning. The Mississippi runs wide, deep and muddy for most of its 2,300 miles, draining 31 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces. Yet it begins as a babbling pour-off suitable for wading at Minnesota’s Lake Itasca. Who knew? Continue reading “Bond of Brothers at the Headwaters of the Mississippi; Mom would be Pleased”
Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary was escape-proof back in the day. Now ceded to tourists, it’s impossible to get into the maximum security relic without a reservation. May we recommend nearby Angel Island instead? Continue reading “Alcatraz booked? Try San Francisco Bay’s Angel Island Alternative”
Yosemite National Park shows best in the spring. Winter storms yield to warm sunshine. Streams and waterfalls run full. Flowers begin to bloom. Pterodactyls prowl the trails and overlooks. Continue reading “The Pterodactyl that Ate Yosemite: A Preschool Pterosaur Adventure”
The @GoldenGateNPS Twitter feed promised “inspiring” wildflowers at Dias Ridge, but nearly six miles and 106 FitBit flights later we were drawing most of our inspiration from the pub at the end of the trail. Continue reading “A Wildflower Hike Becomes a Pub Crawl on Marin County’s Dias Ridge Trail”
Not content with our backyard blossoms in Montara, we made a quick trip to Big Sur last week to experience Calla Lilly Valley. The day was sunny. The valley was lovely. But the 110-mile drive took four hours. Oof. Was it worth it? You be the judge. Continue reading “Rugged Big Sur Coast Cradles a Floral Fairyland Called Calla Lily Valley”
We’ve never had much interest in birding beyond gawking at pelican squadrons and solitary raptors common to The Coastside. Too fussy. But our recent visit to Pescadero Marsh Natural Preserve may have changed our minds. Continue reading “Pescadero Marsh Shelters a Coastside Birder Paradise; Bring Your Binoculars”