I have tent camped most of my adult life. Personally, I like the tub method of sorting and obtaining supplies. One tub for the kitchen, one for the tent/air mattresses/blankets or sleeping bags and all the gear that goes with that, one for light, electric and emergency supplies. This has worked well for us until I went on Pinterest. I never knew I was packing so wrong and missing so many creature comforts of the camping experience. But I did go there and now I will need a separate vehicle just for supplies!
I have a strange relationship with Pinterest. I am the owner of 42, yes, 42 boards of various things that have caught my interest over time. I don’t know whether to be ashamed or proud that I have 42 boards. But be that as it may I was searching camping, supplies, hacks and whatnot. To tell you the truth my head hurts.
We have tent camped from Virginia to Washington State to LA and back home again. Haphazard as it was, it was minimalist, it worked, and it fit in the Trail Blazer. Now I must go to the store and get a bucket and pool noodles for a toilet, kid foam flooring and a fold up kitchen to lug across the country. Rugs to keep dirt out of your tent, poles for your lantern, a hand washing station separate from the spigot that we have been using for years. Hanging dishes in a mesh bag, belts for you cookware to hang from the trees and pool noodles attached to your tie downs so you don’t trip in the middle of the night. How did we ever make it in the wilderness?
I know, Pinterest is for ideas. You have to pick and choose what makes sense for what you’re doing, where you will be going and how long you will be on the road. Since this trip across the US will last a few months I can’t be a camping “junky” and really need to think about how we will use the stuff , multiple uses and how economical it will be. Decisions, decisions!
My Pinterest boards.
There are 59 National Parks in the US, I have visited 18 of them. That leaves 41 for me to complete my bucket list. As I am doing research for our US road trip I have learned that there are 417 national park sites but only 59 have the actual “National Park” in their name. There are battlefields, memorials, parkways, reserves and seashores and much more than just parks. The best information regarding the national park sites is from the NPS website, here. What an awesome legacy we leave to the younger generation that rarely goes outside anymore. As I write this President Trump has made efforts to take some of the land from Bear Ears and the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument. Two places that I haven’t seen but will make sure to include them in our trip before they no longer exist. The world has become smaller and I fear that the land is too valuable for the greedy to “waste.” That, of course depends on your definition of waste. So, I will attempt to see as many of the national parks as I can with this trip.
We will travel through 25 states, more or less and the Yukon territory of Canada if everything goes according to plan. Starting in Virginia we will make out way down the East Coast to Florida, follow I 10 until we get to Texas. We will spend quite a bit of time in Texas, going to Big Bend, Guadalupe Mountains National Park, and the Rio Grande Scenic River. I am most excited about Big Bend. Before my mother died from cancer we had made plans to go there so that will be a tribute to her. We will then head to San Diego, California and head north through Northern Arizona, Utah, and Wyoming to Alaska. It will be an adventure of a lifetime!
Yosemite National Park
We did make it Florida and down the coast, over 600 miles! I lived! Man, what an adventure that should have been put to words. I didn’t. I was busy trying to cycle, trying to make miles, trying to live the experience. I do have some grand memories to write about! I found out that I love my brother and would be his friend even if we weren’t siblings. I realized that I could do anything I wanted with a little preparation and training. I will relate these experiences in the days to come. I am also planning my and my husbands trip to Alaska. Four months of working hard and then we’re off. This is going to be a super budget trip, camping, glamping and hotels along the way. I hope, I hope to be better disciplined with writing especially since we will be in a car. I love planning trips almost as much as I love taking them. Since my husband has no interest in the planning phase I will be making most of my notes here. At least it will be in one place!