Family Vacation Planning – 7 More National Parks

It’s been a while since I posted anything but that doesn’t mean the RegularGuy hasn’t been planning the next big adventure.   I am always in the planning phase of at least 4 to 5 trips.   It just so happens that my next trip is only 37 days away.

This next vacation is special to me in that it will likely be the last trip that the 5 of us all travel together as a family.   My oldest daughter is expecting her first baby in November and will be out of the vacation loop for a while.  We’ve had so many great adventures over the years, I am really excited to make this trip the most memorable trip to date.   The fact that my wife is working now as an ER nurse affords us the opportunity for the 5 of us to all fly together for the first time.   The kids are really excited.

As you can see from the map below, we will be flying into Las Vegas and spending the first day seeing the highlights of “Sin City.”  That evening, we’ll make the short 2+ hour drive up to Springdale, UT.   Starting the next day, we’ll make our way across Utah seeing all 5 National Parks.

Loop Map

While planning this trip, my sense of adventure got the best of me.   The original plan was to simply visit the 5 parks in Utah.   After some careful map study, why not drop down into Arizona and hit two more parks on the way back.  We will pick up Petrified Forrest and Grand Canyon as we head west back toward Las Vegas.   We may as well see Hoover Dam while we are that close.   (Just a glimpse into how my brain operates)  I have had some friends say that this is too much driving.   “That’s a long way to go.”  “You aren’t staying at one hotel?”    My response is, “I’ll rest when I get back.”   I’m sucking the marrow out of this life and have no guarantee of tomorrow.   None of us do.  If I’m flying across the country, I’m going to see everything I can.   My kids have been to 38 states and will be picking up 3 more on this trip.

I bought our plane tickets back in March and have been booking our hotels since February.   Many of these parks in Utah are quite remote and have only small towns nearby.  These towns primarily survive on tourism so the hotels book up early.  I like to book early knowing these places will all be sold out by now.  Nothing could ruin a trip like this more than assuming you could get a hotel room and showing up to find out they are totally booked.

I have been teaching myself photography over the past two weeks.   I am going to be practicing with my Nikon D5300 in the coming weeks in order to be able to capture some of the stunning images we are sure to see on this adventure.    Stay tuned for a full wrap-up on this trip coming in late June.

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4 thoughts on “Family Vacation Planning – 7 More National Parks

  1. Yes, I couldn’t agree more about sucking the marrow out of this life! What a wonderful adventure for you and your family. We took a similar trip 2 years ago, adding on Grand Canyon (though not Petrified Forest) and Yosemite and Sequoia, too. Looking forward to reading more about your explorations!

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    1. I was reading some of your blog posts too. Sounds like we share the same passion. I could travel, explore, fly fish, photograph full time but this darn regular job keeps getting in the way. My wife and I are trying to visit all 59 National Park. This upcoming trip will bring us to 16. I look forward to reading more of your posts too.

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  2. That’ll be a fantastic trip. You will be blow away by the scenery along Highway 12 in Utah. Enjoy! I recommend getting a Joby Gorillapod for family photo ops. Easy to tote around and there’s always something to set the little tripod on.

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    1. Ingrid, thanks for following me. A Joby Gorillapod is on my list of purchases yet to be made. I Have a small one but it wasn’t strong enough to hold up our DSLR camera. Clearly a new one is in order for a trip like this. We are decorating our house in photos of our National Park adventures. I love following your adventures, I think we have similar passions.

      Liked by 1 person

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