Category Archives: beautiful places

One Year of Sobriety Today

What a year…
I’m feeling quiet lately, but all is well.
Oliver Lee State Park is beautiful.

Strange Places in New Mexico

“You should go to Three Rivers”
Sitting in the small cabin that serves as check in lobby for the resort where Susan is working, I’ve told the retired owner we’re caravaning to White Sands National Monument the next morning. Selected from my 1,000 Places to See Before You Die! book, he suggests that instead of camping [...]

Remembering Things

Walking through the ruins of the ancient Pueblo people’s homes in Bandelier National Monument, I was thinking of Dan’s  comment about our attachment to items that function as placeholders for our important memories.
When I felt the urge to give away my things, it was only with regard to meaningless items that felt like [...]

Girls Gone Wild

“I know you!” we say in unison.
The woman walks around the check in desk and, despite having never met before, we instinctively hug.
Susan (of Minnie Minerva) is workcamping at a luxury hotsprings resort in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. With me being unsure of where to head when I hit the road, and feeling inspired [...]

Nomadic Simplicity, deconstructed

What do I love about it?

material simplicity – the psychological freedom this provides cannot be exaggerated
breaking out of the consumer culture
escaping the suburbia trap
a sense of endless adventure and frequent immersion in beautiful natural spaces
flexibility to visit loved ones
always having my private space with me

What do I not like about it?

lack of community, or the [...]

The Trailer

As I started to get well last year, the first realization that something had fundamentally changed in my life was clear as I spent the summer rehabbing a run down mobile home that my family used when I was a child.
(That healing experience was also the first post that prompted me to start this blog.)
My [...]


“Did the entire building just shake back and forth?”
The woman on the other end of the phone line speaks to me with emphatic calmness, “Yes, we just had a little earthquake, but everything is fine.”
Alaska keeps your ego in check.  Up here, you never forget that Mother Nature has the upper hand.
Still, I’ve had a [...]

End of the Dempster!

I’ve finished the Dempster! I’ve got a busted tail pipe, broken exterior steps, and maybe one slow leak in a rear tire, but I finished it!
I am exhausted.
I will head to the airport tomorrow to find out about flights. I’m only 60 miles from the Arctic Ocean!
Here are some pictures and videos of today’s drive. [...]

The Arctic Circle!

What a drive today. That was tough.
I had no idea what six and a half hours of washboard, potholed, slick, muddy road driving was like.
And, now, I do.
I get to do that three more times and I think I’m done for life!



After the first 100 miles, I didn’t think I was going to make it. [...]

Can you believe this? On the drive to Watson Lake.

Through the Rockies: Fort Nelson to Liard Hot Springs

It was during my drive from Fort Nelson to Liard Hot Springs that I first had the frightening sensation of being alone in a vast wilderness.
I’ve been in the forests of Upper Michigan, in natural places far from any city, but I’ve never had such a sense of being alone in a place that seemed [...]

A quick post…

Glacier National Park was extraordinary. I had a five day stay, but could spend weeks there.
I’m in a rush because I’ve driven over to Spokane, Washington this evening. Tomorrow morning I fly to Scotsdale, Arizona to meet up with my husband for a planned three week point and pre-USA departure visit. (We’re meeting in [...]

Yellowstone and Freezing Rain

Maybe it was the freezing rain. Or the acres of burned forests on my drive in. Or the piles of greasy black gravel mixed in with dirty snow. Maybe I came too early in the season.
I didn’t enjoy Yellowstone.
After an unexpectedly spectacular drive up from Casper, Wyoming to the East Entrance, the sky turned a [...]

Lost in the Rockies

“You can’t go up there. There’s snow,” a neighboring camper advises me.
“What do you mean? The roads are bad?”
“Oh no, the roads are fine. There is snow on the trail.”
Confused by what is so perilous about snow on the trail, I decide to stop by the visitor center and ask a park ranger.
“Oh, you’ll probably [...]

Slowing Down

It started to feel like a journey yesterday. Somewhere in the middle of the Comanche National Grasslands I exhaled (and noticed).
I was anxious to get through Texas. The route from the Gulf to the border is too-familiar and I’m sure most of you would agree that the I-35 corridor is not the right starting point [...]