Recent Family Road Trips
Our 2004 trip across 48 states was a unique opportunity that won't come around very often. Most of our road trips are closer to home, but they are still a lot of fun. Here are some road trips we have taken over the past three years.
Southern Utah Tour Spring 2007, 510 miles
In 2007 we were living in Northern Utah, and were anxious to explore the many National Parks in Southern Utah. In May, we headed south and spent a few days visiting Arches National Park. We then went to Glenn Canyon National Recreation Area (Lake Powell) and rented a speed boat and a pull toy for the day. We then headed east through Capitol Reef National Park and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument to Bryce Canyon National Park. The drive between lake Powell and Bryce Canyon was a pretty rugged for us pulling a trailer, but it was beautiful. After some time in Bryce Canyon National Park, we headed down to Zion's National Park, then made the trech home. We had lots of memorable hiking adventures on this trip.
Chesapeake Bay Exploration Day Trip Summer 2006, 510 miles
In the summer of 2006 we were living in Northern Virginia on a temporary work assignment. We were expecting to be there for about 4 months, and it was important for us see as much of this historic part of the country as we could. Vacation days were getting scarce this year, and there were several things we wanted to see that were 100-200 miles each from where we lived. One day off we decided to cross several off our list at once.
On this trip we started by visiting historic Jamestown and colonial Williamsburg. We then cut over to visit the eastern shore and played on the beaches of the Chesapeake Bay. One of the cool parts of the trip was the road that goes across the mouth of the bay, as it alternates going over and under the water.
The highlight of the trip was Assateague Island National Park. We enjoyed seeing the wild ponies on the Island and the neat interpretive center run by the park service. The best part, however, was the beach. Our kids love to go swimming, especially at the beach. 510 miles is a long way to go on a day trip, but to our children the beach trip made it all worth it.
Disneyland Trip Winter 2005, 2600 miles
Our family loves Disneyland. However, at about 1000 miles from Portland, there is a lot of time if you are driving. Usually on a family road trip, the getting there is half of the fun. When going to Disneyland, the destination is the focus. This time we decided to mix things up a little bit by going to see family in Utah for Christmas on our way home. The Utah stop added a lot of mileage to the trip, but it was fun to travel home by a different route. Besides, the extra miles are just extra family togetherness. We did this trip without our trailer and stayed in Hotels and with family.
Oregon Exploration Trip: Summer 2005, ~700 miles
This is the way we like to spend a summer vacation. On this 10 day trip we spent some time on Oregon's beautiful coast. We then headed inland, and stayed near a wildlife safari park. We then headed up into the mountains to see Crater Lake, Oregon's only National Park and the deepest lake in North America. We finished the trip by spending a couple of nights on Lake Billy Chinook and renting a boat to explore the lake.
It was fun to go explore the state we have called home for so many years. After traveling the United States, this one is still our favorite. On one trip we were able to see many of the neat things to see in the state.
We like to plan our road trips in a loop to keep a feeling of exploration in the trip. Traveling back on the same road you left on can make for a boring and seemingly long return. This trip is an example of that. We were seeing new territory on that trip almost the entire way.