Tag archives for mountains

Good travel surprises us. It teaches us new things, it changes our opinions, and helps us see the world in a new way. Until now, I’ve always associated fall with the northeast and the foliage brilliance of New England, but traveling through Utah in early October showed me the other side of autumn–one with red…

Hiking in Skye

There are two secrets to happy hiking in Scotland: waterproof clothing and lots of time. Show up in the Highlands with a plan to reach such-and-such peak on such-and-such day, and Scotland will laugh in your face and spit rain at you. Better to draw a big circle around a set of calendar days and…

After days and days of driving across some of the flattest terrain in America, I was keen to see the parts of Texas that are not flat, namely the highest point in the state. I should know by now never to plan a hiking excursion without leaving some extra days for weather contingencies, especially in…

I love toponyms (place names), because they reveal so much—and yet so little—about the places they are meant to typify. It was snowing in Minneapolis (Sioux Mni = “water”; Greek polis = “city”) when I boarded a flight for Kalispell, and briefly imagined that Kalispell was the name of some flaxen-haired, rose-lipped pioneer beauty in…

The Kauai Coast

I am drawn to the uninhabited places of the world, a kind of strange pull on my person which is likely what led me to Antarctica, to the middle of the Atlantic, and way out Woop Woop. In Hawaii, my search for wilderness took me to Kauai, Hawaii’s Garden Island, a place so steep and…

I flew into Calgary yesterday afternoon and then caught the first bus to Banff. The 90-minute drive starts out straight, flat, brown, and boring–but soon, the bare white wheat fields ripple into true hills that roll into the western distance and its promise of great mountains. And then, before you have time to guess when…

Québec is not a land of low calories. Rather, this is the place that invented poutine (a proud feat, really—to triple the calories of french fries in single serving). I’ve also noticed that as a people, the Québecois are dedicated to dousing random things in maple syrup. At this point in my journey, I am…