• Browns Gap Hike @ Shenandoah National Park || terragoes.com
    Adventures,  National Parks,  U.S.A.,  Virginia

    Jones Run & Doyles River Waterfalls at Shenandoah National Park

    IT HAPPENED, Y’ALL! After two attempts to scamper along the trails and explore the waterfalls of Shenandoah National Park, I finally made it. AND IT WAS GLORIOUS! Shenandoah is, in a way, my home park. I was born in the mountains that it protects and I grew up driving up and down the Skyline Drive, but I think I took it for granted and, as a kid, I was restricted to whatever the adults wanted to do, which mostly wasn’t hiking. Plus, I’m a very different sort of explorer than I was growing up, and so, I’ve promised myself I’ll be better about visiting Shenandoah this year, that I’ll hike…

  • Saguaro National Park || terragoes.com
    Adventures,  Arizona,  National Parks,  U.S.A.

    A Beginner’s Guide to Saguaro National Park

    When three coyotes ran across the road in front of me I knew I was in the right place. I knew I was supposed to be there, that waking up early after a long day of travel was the right answer, that starting my Arizona national park adventure in Tucson, at Saguaro National Park was exactly, perfectly correct. I’d ended up there by chance. The original plan had been to fly roundtrip from Phoenix, spending a night or two there before heading north to Flagstaff for the Grand Canyon, Petrified Forest and some of the smaller national monuments in northern Arizona. When rental car prices topped $400, I called foul…

  • Bandelier National Monument || TERRAGOES.COM
    Adventures,  National Parks,  New Mexico,  U.S.A.

    Finding Solitude at Bandelier National Monument & also a Tarantula

    It’s been four months since I went to New Mexico. It was the first solo trip I’d ever taken and I can’t stop thinking about it, especially lately as I put together my next adventure, this time to Arizona for my birthday in March. I keep coming back to the way I felt while I was there, to these specific moments that seem suspended in my memory. They’re glowy, like an old television flashback, with a certain amount of sparkle around the edges. In New Mexico, I visited my two favorite parks on the same day. I started at Valles Caldera, arriving just after the gates opened at 8 a.m.,…

  • Life,  National Parks,  Tennessee,  U.S.A.

    A Waterfall, the Great Smoky Mountains & How We Said Goodbye to Us

    We broke up six months ago, but there we were, driving south from Richmond to Gatlinburg, Tennesse, toward the Great Smoky Mountains. It was an unintentional farewell tour, a trip hatched months ago, planned and booked right before things broke again and executed defiantly and stubbornly because that’s who we are, defiant and stubborn humans with an excessive amount of love for one another and hopelessly divergent viewpoints. On Thursday I pulled up the trip planner for Great Smoky Mountains National Park and gestured to a list of waterfall hikes.

  • Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts || TERRAGOES.COM
    Adventures,  National Parks,  U.S.A.,  Virginia

    Backstage at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts

    Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts in America’s one and only national park dedicated to the performing arts. It’s located in Vienna, Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C., and is super close to where my grandmother used to live. I grew up knowing about Wolf Trap, but for some reason I never realized it was a national park. Wolf Trap, as it’s full name suggests, is a venue for the performing arts. It’s an outdoor venue, with its main season running April – October, and it hosts a variety of performers, from musicians to dancers, symphonies to comedians. Wolf Trap’s main stage, the Filene Center, is an amphitheater, with room…