Where We've Been: American Road Trip
Earlier this summer, our Web Merchandiser Melissa M. decided to mark a milestone birthday by crossing a big item off her travel to-do list. She tells us, "I turned 30 this year, and decided that it was finally time to take the coast-to-coast road trip that I'd always wanted to go on. I asked my brother to go with me-- we've always been close, but never taken a trip together." They picked out a week's worth of destinations across the country, then flew to San Francisco to get started. The first leg of the trip took Melissa to Redwood National Park, home of the famous, towering trees. "The hike through Redwood was amazing," she says. "We didn't see any other people along the way, and the forest was just unreal-- a mossy fairyland."
From Redwood, Melissa headed north along the Oregon coast, stopping at Thor's Well on craggy Cape Perpetua. She turned inland next, cutting across Washington and Idaho to reach Montana and Glacier National Park. "We spent the most time at Glacier, and it was definitely a highlight of the trip-- just an amazing landscape where every view is better than the last. We boated, hiked, and drove the length of Going to the Sun Road, a route that travels east to west across the mountains. Thanks to an insider tip from a friend, we also stopped by Polebridge Mercantile to try out a Montana speciality- huckleberry bear claws!"
After saying a reluctant farewell to Glacier, Melissa turned south toward Wyoming and Yellowstone, where she took in sights including the Grand Prismatic Spring and-- of course-- Old Faithful. "From Yellowstone, we crossed the Badlands in South Dakota and stopped by Mount Rushmore, where we got to sample ice cream made using Thomas Jefferson's recipe." She adds, "It was great! My brother is going to try making it at home."
The final stop on the trip was a long way east-- Kentucky's Mammoth Cave National Park. "Mammoth Cave is the largest cave system in the world," Melissa explains. "It's over 400 miles long and they're still finding new areas! It was, honestly, a little scary how huge the caves were." After Mammoth, it was finally time to make the rest of the drive back to the East Coast. The grand total for their trip? An impressive 4,936 miles!
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These photos are amazing, so glad you got to celebrate 30 with such an epic road trip!
What an adventure! I did a cross country drive, not so leisurely though. Dealing with a cross country move and a pageant mom (my husband) calling non-stop to see if I hit my milestone. I did venture off to the Grand Canyon for a nice little hour. My avocado plants didn't make it even with the windows cracked and pageant mom was upset I delayed. Happy Trails.