mountains

Superior, Arizona

A funky little mining town along state highway 60, easy to ignore as you drive into the beautiful Superstition Mountains and Tonto National Forest. But it’s worth a stop, particularly for the Boyce Thompson Arboretum…

Superior, Arizona

The Ruins of Ani, Kars

Any list of the must-see spots of northeastern Turkey in my mind has to include the ruins of the city of Ani, which you will find in the Kars region, right along the border with Armenia. There are two parts actually, the former city overlooking a river valley, and a countless cave dwellings below along the river...

The Ruins of Ani, Kars

Uzungöl, Turkish Mountain Retreat

During my 2014 Come See Turkey experience, after visiting Sümela, we traveled from Trabzon to Kars, and we stopped for a bit in the town of Uzungöl, a lovely mountain retreat in the Çaykara district that would be at home in Switzerland...

Uzungöl, Turkish Mountain Retreat

Driving in Turkey from Trabzon to Kars

Leaving Trabzon after our adventures there, we in the Come See Turkey group made our way through the Pontic and Kaçkar mountain ranges toward Kars. It was amazing to see the changes in environment, topography, and culture as we traveled through river valleys, snowy alpine passes, and down into steppes... 

Driving in Turkey from Trabzon to Kars

Opal Creek and Jawbone Flats, Oregon

In January 2015 I explored Opal Creek and the quasi-ghost town of Jawbone Flats (population 5) in the central Cascade Mountains in Oregon. The area is thick with gorgeous fir trees, and the water in the creeks and rivers is crystal clear.  It's so clear in fact that when it pools, it looks insanely, surreally blue...  

Opal Creek and Jawbone Flats, Oregon

Icelandair Stopover Buddy Adventure with ATV – Óbyggðaferðir (Post 1 of 2)

As part of my trip to Iceland for Canopy by Hilton in November 2016, the Stopover Buddy service from Icelandair took us out of Reykjavík for an incredible adventure riding ATVs around Three Horn Mountain near Lambalækur, Iceland. Unnar Gardarsson of ATV – Óbyggðaferðir was our leader at the site, and I must admit he took us on one of the best trips I can remember as we slid through snow banks, forded icy rivers, admired waterfalls and volcanos, and then ate a wonderful lunch in an eighth-century monk's cave on a cliffside. On the first part of our adventure...

Icelandair Stopover Buddy Adventure with ATV – Óbyggðaferðir (Post 1 of 2)

Lakes around Mount Hood, Sept 2016

After a tough week with a very, very tough photoshoot at a hospital, I took a day off to just grab my swimming trunks and head off to some of the fabulous lakes south of Mount Hood in Oregon. By the time I arrived, a lovely morning fog had burned off and bright sunshine warmed the air. I hit Trillium Lake, Little Crater Lake, and Timothy Lake in Clackamas County, and briefly Clear Lake in Wasco County... 

Lakes around Mount Hood, Sept 2016

Drive Through Central Idaho, May 2016

While visiting a sick friend in Boise in May 2016, I had a free morning and decided to take a drive up into the mountains of central Idaho to visit the places of my childhood. It was a quick blast of nostalgia that was met with a rainstorm and then blizzard at the high altitudes...

Drive Through Central Idaho, May 2016

Rainier Day 2: Sunrise, Washington

After our stop at Eunice Lake, we traveled onward to Sunrise, Washington, which is the highest spot in the park you can drive to. From its lodge, hiking trails spider off in all directions for easy hikes that all offer truly breathtaking views of Mount Rainier and its surrounding foothills. Cascade beauty! As we drove up to the site, a thick layer of clouds sat around the mountain, but as we started hiking the cloud cover quickly burned off.

Rainier Day 2: Sunrise, Washington

Rainier Day 2: Eunice Lake

Early in the morning of our second day on Mount Rainier (after the actual sunrise, but on our way to the area named Sunrise), we stopped for photos at Eunice Lake. It was a little too windy for good reflections, but still so lovely!

Rainier Day 2: Eunice Lake

Rainier Day 2: Crystal Mountain Gondola to Summit House

For lunch on the second day in the Mount Rainier National Park area, we rode the Crystal Mountain gondola to the Summit House restaurant. The views from atop the sky slopes were breathtaking, particularly Rainier itself. 

Rainier Day 2: Crystal Mountain Gondola to Summit House

Rainier Day 1: Sunset Drive to Crystal Mountain

We ended a packed day of fun in the Mount Rainier National Forest by driving through incredible scenery to our hotel, the Alpine Inn at Crystal Mountain. The room was pretty small, but I had my own bathroom, and hey, we closed the bar that night. One thing that is for certain: the location is spectacular. Plus, we were a short walk to a host of ski runs. I'd love to return in the wintertime. 

Rainier Day 1: Sunset Drive to Crystal Mountain

Rainier Day 1: Reflection Lake

Reflection Lake is nestled in the foothills below Mount Rainier. There was just enough wind when we visited to send ripples across the water and prevent reflections of the mountain. Oh well! It was still absolutely gorgeous. 

Rainier Day 1: Reflection Lake

Rainier Day 1: Hiking in Paradise

Near the end of Day 1 in the Mount Rainier National Park, we stopped at the satisfyingly appropriately named Paradise, Washington, for some hiking and then a picnic dinner. The views were beyond description! And the weather for us was perfection, as the fog burned off Rainier just as we started on the trail. When you visit the park, Paradise is a must-see!

Rainier Day 1: Hiking in Paradise