National Parks

The Positive Effects of the Junior Ranger Program

How the Junior Ranger Program Teaches Children to Become Advocates for their Environment The first time I set foot in a National Park, I was 18. After all, living in the flatlands of Chicagoland, I didn’t know much about the parks. I only knew they were mostly located on or near the coasts, and I was hundreds of miles away from the closest one. The second time I set foot in a National Park, I was 28, married, with two daughters. This was when I saw Yosemite for the first time. Here, I immediately fell in love with…

Seven Amazing Southwest Adventures

  Hiking in the southwest offers some of the most beautiful scenery on Earth. Deep canyons, roaring rivers, majestic rock formations, desolate valleys, and tight slot canyons are just a few of the wonders you can experience in the southwest. Everywhere you turn there seems to be a new place to discover and explore. Our friend, Mitch Stevens, lead guide and founder of Southwest Discoveries, has compiled a list of 7 grand adventures in the southwest. As a tour guide and avid hiker, Mitch has hiked through numerous southwest environments and has decided to share with us his favorites…

Distinctive Lodging in Utah’s Parks

This is a guest post from Mitch Stevens, founder and lead guide of Southwest Discoveries. Based out of Tucson, Arizona, Southwest Discoveries offers multi-generational guided tours of the Grand Canyon, Sedona, Horseshoe Bend, the Tortolita Mountains, and more. Visit Southwest Discoveries for more information, and click here for Mitch’s original online post. As our readers know, we often spend a lot of time writing about the splendor and majesty we outdoor enthusiasts find when visiting and hiking the Utah parklands. However, an integral part of the trip – and often shortchanged when articles of the journeys are written…

Visiting Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

  Back in 2009, I was able to finally cross something big off my bucket list – to see an active volcano. I traveled to the Big Island of Hawaii and I saw Kilauea, an active volcano at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is about a 45 minute or 30 mile journey from Hilo, Hawaii. Located on the Big Island, the park encompasses a large portion of the southeastern part of the island.  As soon as we got close to the national park, I was amazed at how wet and dense the vegetation was so close to…