Other than snapping a pic of Bigfoot, scoring a permit to hike The Wave may have been one of the toughest items to do on our bucket list. I say this in past tense because, in mid-January, we checked it off, hiking to The Wave that is. We still need a pic of Bigfoot.
Only 20 people each day get the opportunity to visit The
Wave, a unique land formation in a remote location near the Utah/Arizona
border. Located in an area called Coyote Buttes North, it’s a small part of the
112,500-acre Paria Canyon Vermillion Cliff Wilderness, managed by the Bureau of
Land Management. And it’s a spectacular natural wonder; well worth the effort
to secure a permit.
Growing up in Kansas, whenever my family’s summer vacations would
take us east on I-70, it was always a thrill to spot the St. Louis Arch from
the car. The tallest monument in the U.S., it stands prominently on the edge of
downtown St. Louis, towering over the Mississippi River. Back then, the arch
was called the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial, but in 2018 when it
became our nation’s 60th national park, the name was changed to Gateway Arch
The thrill at White Sands National Park in southern New Mexico is to see one of the most unique landscapes on the planet. Not only does the park protect a massive area of sand dunes, the dunes there are snow white. Made up of gypsum rather than quartz-based crystals, which is what most dunes are made from, the endless sea of white will trick you into thinking you’re at the North Pole rather than a remote desert setting.