On August 25th of this year the National Park Service will officially celebrate its 100th birthday, meaning it’s been about 100 years since Woodrow Wilson created the NPS, and well over 100 years since Ulysses S. Grant made Yellowstone arguably the first national park on the planet. Since then the National Parks have grown to be considered one of America’s “Best Ideas,” and are respected globally for their feats in conservation, historic preservation. and of course, adventure. In honor of “America’s Best Idea,” we’re sharing some Clymb stories from time spent in the National Parks.
Oh and don’t forget, entrance to every National Park is free the weekend of August 25th-28th.
Karina Salgado – Brand Designer Manager
Bryce Canyon, Arches, Zion, & Canyonlands National Parks
“I went on a road trip through Utah last spring, we had one week and tried to cram as much as we could into 7 days. We made it through Bryce Canyon, Zion, Canyonlands, and Arches, with a lot of great pit stops and sights in between. The first park we hit was Bryce, driving into the the park the canyon kind of sneaks up on you, you’ll come in at the top of the canyon with tree’s all around, but it’s not until you park and get your legs moving that the canyon’s true beauty is unveiled.”
“We spent the day hiking in and around the canyon, taking it all in– the hoodoos, spires, fins, grottos, walls, bridges, all unique. The orange and red warm tones that made up the rocks contrasted so perfect and beautifully with the brown trunks of the trees and the lush green pines. Everything felt so rich, alien and unbelievable (especially coming from the PNW) and we felt lucky to be in the middle of this magic. Time passed too quickly, and as we made our way out of the canyon with the sun, tired and refreshed all at the same time, we were already bartering with time to somehow expand our week of vacation into a month.”
Suzie Gotis – Photographer/Production Designer
Kenai Fjords National Park
“With only 48 hours to explore Alaska I wanted to make sure to visit a National Park. After landing in Anchorage, and a two hour drive to Seward, we arrived at Kenai Fjords National Park. We hiked the Harding Icefield Trail, leading to views of Exit Glacier. There were avalanche warnings, seeing as it was late spring, so our hike was cut short due to snow, but it was breathtaking nonetheless.”
“There were tons of people at the visitor center, but surprising to see few were hiking Harding Icefield trail. It’s a short hike with a really rewarding view. We also experienced a bit of wildlife on our trip, from a porcupine encounter to a face to face encounter with a Moose calf in the middle of the trail.”
Colin Houghton — Copywriter & Editor
Sequoia National Park
“Years ago on a road trip I spent some time in Sequoia National Park. On the way into the park, we decided last minute that the best way to see it was not by car-camping, but by trying our hand at an 18-mile backpacking loop in 2 days. It was immediately clear that we were terribly unprepared, three of us had never backpacked before and we didn’t even own a portable stove. In addition, we had no water filter, and our sleeping bags were the size of most people’s packs. Nevertheless, we set out on the trail, much to the rangers chagrin.”
“After two days of scrambling through the woods on nothing but Cliff bars, we somehow managed to make it all the way out and back. I’m not sure there was a better/more idiotic way to experience Sequoia’s wilderness.”
Michelle Linton – Director of Adventure Travel
Grand Teton National Park
“On a cold May morning, the day we eloped, my husband and I rode through Grand Teton National Park. The mountains were shrouded in fog and the lakes were as glassy as I’ve ever seen them. Everything felt deserted and beautifully still. As we turned a corner nearing the park exit, lo and behold, we saw a family of grizzlies – a mama nosing around in a meadow while her two cubs wrestled with one another. 2 humans, 3 bears. No one else in sight. It was by far one of the coolest wildlife encounters I’ve experienced.”
“Grand Teton National Park is one of the most spectacular outdoor destinations on the planet. The craggy shapes of its peaks, the fluorescent blue of its glacial lakes, and the sometimes startling proximity of wildlife, are a constant reminder of a place that is hopelessly wild.”
Guz Reister — Operations Coordinator
Arches National Park
“We didn’t get into Moab area until after dark the first night, but were finally able to find our friends’ campsite after an hour or so of driving aimlessly through a canyon. We woke up the next morning to people BASE Jumping off the cliffs above our campsite. The days were full of mountain biking, cliff jumping, and climbing around the park.”
“Arches is so amazing because you can go over one hill and feel immediately in the thick of it. The park is so expansive, and offers countless ways to have fun, from mountain biking, to BASE Jumping, to plain old hiking, the red rocks never fail to inspire. The colors are truly amazing and offer some of the most unique geological shapes on the planet. Don’t miss it.”
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