Posts in Travel
Camping and climbing in Joshua Tree

Third National Park of 2016 - check! (Although I was absent-minded and totally forgot to bring my annual National Park pass. Fail!) My best friend Yena had a dental research conference in LA, so I decided to fly down and meet her so we could go to Joshua Tree! And even better, my friend Emily and friend/colleague Chloe came along too.

Only a 1 hour flight and 3 hour drive away, it was a fairly easy long weekend getaway. Honestly, it was SO refreshing to completely unplug for a weekend -- with no service, we were forced to be present, without social media, work emails, and text messages to distract us from enjoying the moment. And with so much to do--hiking, climbing, and camping--it would have been a shame to be on our phones anyway!

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A four-day weekend: Bryce Canyon National Park in the winter

This is the last of a three-part post. Click here for photos from our day in Zion and a quick recap of our 48 hours in Vegas!

I was told Bryce Canyon looked like another planet, yet I was still mesmerized and awe-struck at the first sight of the canyon. I experienced this feeling of surprise at both Zion and Bryce -- I was (very pleasantly) surprised that the parks, in real life, exceeded the extremely high expectations I came with already, having obsessed and read about the parks for some time prior to our trip. The trip, especially Bryce Canyon, was a good reminder that there are some things in life that you just have to experience - no words or pictures can do justice to what it's like to actually soak up the experience in your own body and mind.

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A four-day weekend: The Narrows in the winter (Zion National Park)

This is the second of a three-part post. Click ahead for photos and more from our day Bryce Canyon, and here for a quick recap of our 48 hours in Vegas!

The Narrows hike in Zion National Park has been on my bucket list for the last couple years - I'm not even sure how I found out about it. On this hike, you wade through the Virgin River at the bottom of this deep gorge, surrounded by walls of over one thousand feet -- how could you NOT want to live this amazingly unique experience? So, when my friend wanted to go to Vegas for her birthday, I seized the opportunity to tack on a trip to Zion National Park and hike the Narrows.

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A four-day weekend: Vegas, Zion, and Bryce!

This is the first of a three-part post. Click ahead for the next two posts for photos and more from our days in Zion and Bryce Canyon

I'm so excited to say that my 2016 is off to an amazing start, and may potentially challenge 2014 as the best year this decade! I sometimes joke and say that I peaked early in life --considering that 2014 was the year I did Bike & Build, went to Patagonia on my first solo trip, and launched this website to pursue my passion of arts/crafts, writing, and travel -- but sometimes I actually worry that it's true! So, I am stoked to feel on top of the world and brimming with opportunities again.

In addition to camping a lot more (which I'll write about soon--I've been 3x just this year!), I'm also planning lots of small 4-day trips to national parks, and kicked off the year with a trip to Las Vegas, Zion National Park, and Bryce Canyon! Read on for details on my quick trip to Vegas, and read the next posts for some pictures from Zion and Bryce! 

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Autumn on the East Coast

A couple weeks ago, I was out in Boston and New York for a business/family trip. Up until then, it had been fairly warm in San Francisco, so it hadn't felt like autumn yet,  despite the fact that it was the end of October. Plus, in the city, the leaves stay green for a while and then just die, so I don't get to watch the foliage transition through those beautiful golden, orange, and crimson hues. So, when I went to the East Coast,  I soaked up all of the fall season I could, and wanted to share some pictures I took on my trusty old iPhone!

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A week in Oregon: the Coast and Sand Dunes

Driving to the coast was bittersweet; I was excited to go to the beach and say hi to the Pacific again, but I also knew it meant that my trip was coming to a close. Even though we drove almost 4 hours on each of my last two days, I enjoyed every single minute of it! Since we had been with friends or at Airbnbs for most of the trip, the three of us hadn't gotten many chances to enjoy each others' company alone, so I really cherished our last two nights. Something about camping makes everything more personal and meaningful; we spent hours chatting by our proud fire, indulging in the kind of deep conversations that you can only have with your best friends.

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A week in Oregon: Crater Lake

We looked for a campsite near Crater Lake the night before we would be there, but given the peak season and the fact that it was Saturday, we had no success. So, we again turned to the wonderful Airbnb, where we found this jaw-dropping log mountain home in a small town called Prospect, about 40 minutes from Crater Lake. We arrived at the lodge in the evening, and were absolutely stunned upon arrival.

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