Taken Saturday, September 25, 2010, at sunset at Delicate Arch, Arches National Park.
Delicate Arch is Entrada sandstone. It’s 52 feet high. This vantage point is reached via 1½-mile trail with an elevation change of about 500 feet. There were approximately 200 people there Saturday, all with the courtesy to stay away from the arch during sunset (prime time for photographers). Six-, soon to be seven-, year-old Sofie made the trek with ease. Grandpa made the trek.
The British-published Rough Guides lists these 30 places/events as things not to miss in USA. How many have you checked off?
Follow above link for photos.
- Monument Valley, AZ • Massive sandstone monoliths stand sentinel in this iconic southwestern landscape.
- Redwood National Park, CA • Soak up the quiet majesty of the world’s biggest trees, wide enough to drive through and soaring upwards like skyscrapers.
- Skiing in the Rocky Mountains • The Rockies make for some of the best skiing anywhere, with their glitzy resorts and atmospheric mining towns.
- Pike Place Market, Seattle, WA • Piled high with salmon, lobster, clams and crabs, the oldest public market in the nation is also home to some great seafood restaurants.
- Savannah, GA • Mint juleps on wide verandas, horse-drawn carriages on cobbled streets and lush foliage draped with Spanish moss; this historic cotton port remains the South’s loveliest town.
- Ancestral Puebloan sites • Scattered through desert landscapes like New Mexico’s magnificent Bandelier National Monument, the dwellings of the Ancestral Puebloans afford glimpses of an ancient and mysterious world.
- Yellowstone National Park, WY • The national park that started it all has it all, from steaming fluorescent hot springs and spouting geysers to sheer canyons and meadows filled with wildflowers and assorted beasts.
- Going to a Baseball Game • America’s summer pastime is a treat to watch wherever you are, from Chicago’s ivy-clad Wrigley Field to Boston’s Fenway Park, the oldest in the country.
- Graceland, Memphis, TN • Pilgrims from all over the world pay homage to the King by visiting his gravesite and endearingly modest home.
- Sweet Auburn, Atlanta, GA • This historic district holds the birthplace of Dr Martin Luther King Jr and other spots honouring his legacy.
- Niagara Falls, NY • The sheer power of Niagara Falls is overwhelming, whichever angle you view the mighty cataracts from.
- Driving Highway 1, CA • The rugged Big Sur coastline, pounded by Pacific waves, makes an exhilarating route between San Francisco and LA.
- Crater Lake, OR • Formed from the blown-out shell of volcanic Mount Mazama, this is one of the deepest and bluest lakes in the world, and offers some of the most evocative scenery anywhere.
- Crazy Horse Memorial, SD • A staggering monument to the revered Sioux leader, this colossal statue continues to be etched into the Black Hills of South Dakota.
- Las Vegas, NV • From the Strip’s erupting volcanoes, Eiffel Tower and Egyptian pyramid to its many casinos, Las Vegas will blow your mind as well as your wallet.
- Hiking in the Grand Canyon, AZ • Explore the innermost secrets of this wondrous spot on many of its superb hiking trails at the heart of one of America’s best-loved parks.
- Walt Disney World, Orlando, FL • Though each of Orlando’s theme parks strives to outdo the rest, Walt Disney World remains the one to beat.
- Glacier National Park, MT • Montana’s loveliest park holds not only fifty glaciers, but also two thousand lakes, a thousand miles of rivers and the exhilarating Going-to-the-Sun road.
- San Francisco, CA • Enchanting, fog-bound San Francisco remains bohemian and individualistic at heart.
- Hawaii’s volcanoes • Hawaii’s Big Island grows bigger by the minute, as the world’s most active volcano pours molten lava into the ocean.
- The National Mall, Washington DC • From the Lincoln Memorial to the US Capitol by way of the towering Washington Monument – this grand parkway is an awesome showcase of American culture and history.
- Mardi Gras, New Orleans, LA • Crazy, colourful, debauched and historic – this is the carnival to end them all.
- New York City, NY • With world-class museums, restaurants, nightlife and shops aplenty, the Big Apple is in a league of its own.
- Yosemite Valley, CA • Enclosed by near-vertical, mile-high cliffs and laced with hiking trails and climbing routes, the dramatic geology of Yosemite Valley is among the country’s finest scenery.
- Miami’s Art Deco, FL • This flamboyant city is deservedly famed for the colourful pastel architecture of its restored South Beach district.
- Driving US-1 to Key West, FL • Travel one of America’s most tantalizing highways from sleepy Key Largo to heaving Key West, cruising over the sharks and rays on giant causeways and bridges.
- BBQ • Perhaps no other cuisine is as essentially American as BBQ – smoked ribs, pulled pork and brisket – with the Carolinas, Texas and Kansas fighting it out as the nation’s top pit masters.
- Venice Beach, LA, CA • Combines wacky LA culture with Muscle Beach, surfing, sand and good food, all a short drive from the glitz of Beverly Hills and Hollywood.
- South by Southwest, TX • This thriving ten-day festival in Austin is one of the nation’s best music festivals and plays host to bands from around the world – and Texas, too.
- Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, OH • Housed inside this striking glass pyramid is an unparalleled collection of rock music’s finest mementoes, recordings, films and exhibitions.
Previously Rough Guides included —
- Aurora borealis, AK • Winter visitors to Alaska just might see the skies ablaze with the shimmering veils of the Northern Lights.
- Chicago’s modern architecture, IL • The history of modern architecture is writ large on Chicago’s skyline, site of the world’s first skyscraper.
- Burning Man • Every summer a temporary community takes life in the middle of the Nevada desert and hosts an art and music festival wholly unlike any other.
- Swamps • From the steamy Everglades of Florida to the ghostly bayous of Louisiana’s Cajun country, America’s swamplands are hauntingly beautiful.
- New England in the fall • The Northeast’s breathtaking fall foliage presents an ever-changing palette of colour and light.
- Rodeos • Relive the Old West with cowboys and cowgirls at rodeos like Cheyenne Frontier Days and countless smaller ones.
… was authorized by Congress on this date in 1962.
Padre Island National Seashore separates the Gulf of Mexico from the Laguna Madre, one of a few hypersaline lagoons in the world. The park protects 70 miles of coastline, dunes, prairies, and wind tidal flats teeming with life. It is a safe nesting ground for the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle and a haven for 380 bird species. It also has a rich history, including the Spanish shipwrecks of 1554.
Padre Island National Seashore is the longest stretch of undeveloped barrier island in the world. In addition to its 70 miles of protected coastline, other important ecosystems abound, including rare coastal prairie, a complex and dynamic dune system, wind tidal flats teeming with life, and the Laguna Madre, one of the few hypersaline lagoon environments left in the world. The National Seashore and surrounding waters provide important habitat for marine and terrestrial plants and animals, including a number of rare, threatened, and endangered species.
Situated along the Central Flyway, Padre Island is a globally important area for over 380 migratory, overwintering, and resident bird species (nearly half of all bird species documented in North America). Thirteen of these species are considered species of concern, threatened, or endangered.
National Park Service
. . . was established on this date in 1961.
Set in the rugged beauty of the Davis Mountains of west Texas, Fort Davis is one of America’s best surviving examples of an Indian Wars’ frontier military post in the Southwest. From 1854 to 1891, Fort Davis was strategically located to protect emigrants, mail coaches, and freight wagons on the Trans-Pecos portion of the San Antonio-El Paso Road and the Chihuahua Trail, and to control activities on the southern stem of the Great Comanche War Trail and Mescalero Apache war trails. Fort Davis is important in understanding the presence of African Americans in the West and in the frontier military because the 24th and 25th U.S. Infantry and the 9th and 10th U.S. Cavalry, all-black regiments established after the Civil War, were stationed at the post.
National Park Service
… was authorized on this date in 1937.
The area now known as Cape Hatteras National Seashore has a long and rich heritage. The islands that make up the seashore have been home to Native Americans, farmers, watermen, slaves, lighthouse keepers, surfmen, and many others who continue to shape the heritage of the area. The people have witnessed events that include hurricanes, the death of Blackbeard the pirate, Civil War battles, the construction of its now famous lighthouses, the birth of the USCG in the lifesaving stations, hundreds of shipwrecks, Billy Mitchell’s test bombings, Reginald Fessenden’s first radio broadcasts, the building of dunes by the CCC, scientific strides in weather forecasting, u-boat attacks, and much more.
Cape Hatteras National Seashore, the nation’s first national seashore, was established to preserve significant segments of unspoiled barrier islands along North Carolina’s stretch of the Atlantic Coast. Barrier islands are narrow, low-lying, dynamic landforms which parallel ocean coasts, are separated from the mainland, and are constantly moving and reshaping in response to storms, ocean currents, sea level changes, and wave and wind action. These processes continue to influence the islands today through the processes of erosion and accretion of the shoreline; overwash across the islands; and the formation, migration, and closure of the inlets.
National Park Service
… was designated a national historical monument on this date in 1935. It became a national historical park in 1954.
Walk the old country lanes where Robert E. Lee, Commanding General of the Army of Northern Virginia, surrendered his men to Ulysses Grant, General-in-Chief of all United States forces, on April 9, 1865. Imagine the events that signaled the end of the Southern States’ attempt to create a separate nation. The National Park encompasses approximately 1800 acres of rolling hills in rural central Virginia. The site includes the McLean home (surrender site) and the village of Appomattox Court House, Virginia, the former county seat for Appomattox County. The site also has the home and burial place of Joel Sweeney – the popularizer of the modern five string banjo. There are twenty seven original 19th century structures on the site.
Appomattox Court House National Historical Park
Photo shows two brothers, often at war, making peace with a hug outside the McLean home in Appomattox Court House. It’s not known whether Grant and Lee hugged.