I have lived in Florida my entire life. Don’t get me wrong it has its perks, if you enjoy theme parks, sand in places you can’t imagine, or skin cancer. Kidding; well not really.
I got into photography about two years ago or so. I love it. Something that is subjective in how you see something is pretty great. There are no rules, there isn’t a status quo you have to follow, just you and your camera. Showing the world what your eyes see from their perspective. It’s an incredible outlet for someone that can focus on one thing at a time, it makes you slow down and wait. Either on a beautiful sunset, or waiting on clouds to remove themselves form a massive mountain.
I got a call from REI about two months ago offering me a job in Washington state. I was thrilled to finally be able to chase my dreams of snow and mountains while being able to afford food and housing and try to manage debt. Of course I jumped at the opportunity. Packed up all the necessities (camping and climbing gear) loaded down the Subaru and headed off on a grand adventure.
These are the places I stopped and explored along the way; with unexpected set backs.
So I powered through most of the driving in two days. Didn’t really care much for anything on the East Coast. I’ve been there my whole life, so there wasn’t much to see in my opinion. I made it to Colorado in two days (27 hours). Two hours outside of Boulder I blew head gasket and managed to coast in without destroying my car. That turned into three extra days in Boulder while my car was getting fixed. I got to spend a lot of time exploring Boulder and climbing at local gyms. Check out Movement Gym, and The Spot. They are incredible places to climb. Each with their own style. Spent most of my days walking around town, remember no car at the moment. I had a day to spend at the Flatirons. They are fantastic with some pretty easy hikes depending on how fast your body adapts to the high altitude. But while on top you get views of the entire town. After that hike on my way down I met a cool dude that was climbing the rock faces and he offered me a ride home, lets face it, that hike was killer and I was exhausted so it was a nice gesture (This is not Garrett saying take rides from strangers). Boulder is a wonderful place for food and beer as well. Check out Walnut Brewery, and Avery Brewery while you are there!
Finally managed to get my car back and I was off again. Next stop was Arches National Park in Utah. I didn’t have much time here because I was on a time crunch to get to my job. But above are a few pictures. The hour I got to spend there was a refreshing time to get out of my car.
I don’t have much more to add, I was really rushed because of my car and work being a few days away but just take time to see some of these rad places along the way. Don’t write of Wyoming either. I have been there a bunch in my free time so I bypassed it. The Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks are sweet!
I used my Fuji XT-1 in all the photos if you were curious about gear.
Get out there!
States: Florida, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, Utah, Idaho, Oregon, Washington.
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph.