Road Tripping with Trish

Most people travel long distances by plane, often never setting foot in what is called “Flyover Country.” It’s not a secret that I’m not a fan of flying. I tend to travel by train or car, and recently I took a couple of weeks to drive to Montana to see my sister and see some sights along the way there and back. So I thought I’d share some of the highlights today, photo essay style. After perusing, let me know if you’ve been to any of these spots, or what some of your favorite park visits have been.


I’m a “collector” of units of the National Parks Service, hoping to one day visit all 401 units. The first new one I added on this trip was Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield in Missouri, a Civil War battlefield.


My next new NPS unit was George Washington Carver National Monument, also in Missouri. Carver was such a talented and interesting man. This site marks his birthplace.


One of my favorite stops was Fort Scott National Historic Site in Kansas, despite the fact is was bloody hot that day. I spent a good bit of time there exploring the many buildings around the old parade ground, including these barracks.


Firehole River in Yellowstone National Park. Yellowstone is one of my favorite places. My sister worked there for a year when she was younger and just last year moved back to within easy driving distance of the park.


Old Faithful Geyser, the most famous landmark in Yellowstone though there are many other geysers and thermal features. Old Faithful isn’t as “faithful” as it used to be. Eruption times can now be anywhere from 10 minutes before to 10 minutes after the posted time.


My sister, two nieces and I found a kind tourist who took a picture of all four of us together.


My nieces and I decide to goof off a bit at the entrance to Grand Teton National Park. Then we ran for the car because the mosquitoes were about to eat us alive.


I tend to take lots of pictures of flowers in my travels. You can see a lot of them on my Pinterest board devoted to them.


The Tetons across Jenny Lake.


Small bison herd in Yellowstone National Park. Not at this spot but another, we actually reported some folks for being too close to the bison. Many people have been gored, either resulting in serious injuries or death, in the park because people got too close to them despite signs that say not to approach the wildlife. I’d rather have people upset than dead.


One of the most beautiful spots in Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River. This was taken from Artist Point, made famous by painter Thomas Moran.


Yes, it was June, but my sister and I had a snowball fight up in the higher elevations. We had to dive for the car soon after this because it started raining, mixed with snow. Yellowstone — where you can experience all four seasons in one day.


On my way home, I stopped at Little Bighorn National Battlefield even though I’d been there before. The last time was in 1995 with my mom. I thought of her a lot while touring there this time. This photo is of the infamous Land Stand hill. The marker that has black on it marks the estimated spot where Custer fell.


Another new addition to my national parks visited list was Devil’s Tower National Monument in Wyoming. Neat place, and I didn’t see any flying saucers. 🙂


My last national park stop for the trip was another place I’d visited with my mom and sister in 1995, Mt. Rushmore. Poor Mom could never remember what it was called, so she called it “the place with the faces.” That’s how I often think of it.


Fort Fetterman State Park in Wyoming. This location was so remote that it was known as a hardship posting and many soldiers deserted via the nearby Bozeman Trail. It was super windy here.



  • Jane says:

    Hello Trish,
    Cool picks. I really admire Carver and saw an exhibition about him at the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit. I’ve been to the Grand Canyon, but Yosemite and Mt. Rushmore are on my list of places to visit.

  • Amy Conley says:

    Wow Trish, you like to travel the same way I do. I would stop at every marker along the road if I could get away with it. LOL
    I haven’t been to most of the states you went to, only Missouri and Kansas. I did get into a snowball fight while visiting the northern part of the Grand Canyon during June of one year.

    • Yeah, I’m totally the stop and read those roadside exhibits type of person. There’s a lot of interesting tidbits and history there that people never see or know.

  • Trish, what a fantastic trip you had and what wonderful photos. I particularly lovely that one of the Tetons across the lake. That’s like something out of a calendar. You put me onto the Nevada Barr books set in a series of national parks and as a result, I’ve got a yen to see a lot of them. Maybe one day!

  • flchen1 says:

    How beautiful, Trish! Have yet to hit any of those–will definitely have to plan a road trip and take the family to see these!

  • Helen says:


    Thank you so much for those lovely pictures i have never ben to any off those beautiful places but I have been to a few National Parks here in NSW and they really are peaceful and beautiful spots

    Have Fun

  • Trish –

    Looks like a great trip. I’ve never been to any of those places but plan to one day. It really looks beautiful. Thanks for sharing with us.

    • Donna, have you been to Hopewell Culture National Historical Park up in your neck of the woods? I visited there when I came up to speak to your chapter a few years ago.

  • catslady says:

    Looks like a wonderful road trip. It’s not something we’ve really done although we have taken some long trips but with the main theme of getting somewhere. My husband did a few while he was young and I think that was enough for him lol. I would love doing it. Who knows – maybe some day.

  • Becke says:

    Great snapshots.

    I love the west and have traveled extensively through it in addition to have lived in Wyoming. The saddest thing to me is when I hear US citizens who have traveled in Europe, but have never visited the west.

    Those of you who haven’t gone, go. It’s a great road trip. If you like the outdoors, be sure to buy a National Park pass. It will more than pay for itself. My favorite is Utah. However, I love the Tetons.

    • My husband and I really want to visit all those wonderful parks in Utah.

      I was stunned when my sister told me that some of the people who live near her have never been been to Yellowstone and expressed no desire to go. They are only about an hour and a half away. I couldn’t imagine.

  • Shannon says:

    I grew up in Idaho, so I got to travel the west extensively but not really the mid-west. I fondly remember Glacier National Park, Yellowstone, Mount Rushmore, and the Tetons. The pictures bring back lots of memories about long family road trips. My brother had a wedding in Yosemite, so I got to explore there. It’s not a national park but the Olympic Forest in Washington was neat; it’s considered a temperate jungle. My father was from Bemidji. MN which is not far from the source of the Mississippi river.

    The thing that I remember from my travels is the different shades of green and brown vary from one place to another. A green forest in Idaho is very different from one in the Appalachians. The browns of Utah are very different than those of the desert in Egypt.

    • You’re so right about the colors, Shannon. Another thing is that mountains out west are much different from the ones in the east because of their difference in age.

      I’d love to go to the Olympic forest to explore. I went out to the Washington coast once, but it was just a day trip out and back to Tacoma.

  • Trish, how fun! Despite not being generally an outdoors person, I love the national parks. They’re just so wild and beautiful.

    And you know I like visiting battlefields. When the boy and I went to DC last month, we drove by signs for several Civil War sites I wished we had time to go see.