Posts Tagged ‘Multnomah Falls’

 “A woodland in full color is awesome as a forest fire, in magnitude at least, but a single tree is like a dancing tongue of flame to warm the heart.” – Hal Borland

Travels With Maggie

I came across an awesome blog this week. The Cool Hunter, http://tinyurl.com/7uop6kk .

Sylvan Lake in Custer State Park located in South Dakota's Black Hills. -- Photo by Pat Bean

 It’s creator listed, with photos, some of the places he thought most beautiful in the world. I was delightedly satisfied that I had seen four of the five places that were on the North American continent, and thrilled that the fifth, The Hamilton Nature Preserve, is located in Texas’ Hill Country near Austin. .

I’ve added it to my travel agenda for April, when I will be attending Story Circle Network’s “Stories from the Heart” http://tinyurl.com/yzc585o memoir writing conference for women in the city.

A nursing buffalo calf halted traffic when I visited Custer State Park. I thought it was a "beautiful" sight. -- Photo by Pat Bean, taken through the front windshield of Gypsy Lee as rain drops began to fall.

The other four awesome places in North America favored by the Cool Hunter are Lake Moraine’s Valley of the Ten Peaks in Alberta, Canada; Multnomah Falls east of Portland in Oregon; The Wave in Arizona’s Vermillion Cliffs; and the Lower Lewis River Falls in Washington.

I agree 110 percent with Cool Hunter’s choices, but I could also name a hundred plus other places in America that are just as beautiful. If I could, I would make “America, the Beautiful,” this country’s national anthem. The lyrics move me every time I hear them.

While I would love to visit some of the many places around the globe whose photos I drooled over when I read Cool Hunter’s blog, I do know that my own backyard is every bit as beautiful – and I’m thankful that I can still hear Dr. Seuss’ words – “Oh the places you’ll go and the things you’ll see” — singing in my mind every time Maggie and I take off down the road in our RV, Gypsy Lee.

Like Custer State Park in South Dakota’s Black Hills, located not far from Mount Rushmore.


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A Southern Arkansas sunrise provides a magical moment to all within its view. -- Photo by Pat Bean


“Each day I live in a glass room unless I break it with the thrusting of my senses and pass through the splintered walls to the great landscape.” Mervyn Peake

Travels With Maggie

I’ve seen hundreds of awesome landscapes since I began living and traveling in my RV, Gypsy Lee, seven years ago.

Whenever I visit an area, I take time to search out historic sites, lakes, parks and all the fantastic landmarks someone found important enough to write about in some guidebook.

What’s amazed me is that I find locals who have never taken the time to visit the places travelers come hundreds of miles to see.

“Always been meaning to go see that waterfall,” said an Oregon waitress when I was telling her about my morning visit to Multnomah Falls just east of her Portland home.

Pink life springs from beneath a carpet of dead leaves. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Then there was the Amarillo, Texas, grocery clerk who noted my Palo Duro Canyon T-shirt and asked me if the place was worth visiting?

“Lived here all my life and never seem to get the time to visit,” she said of the spectacular gorge that lay hidden only 30 miles away.

“Have you ever visited Yellowstone National Park,” I asked.

“Marvelous place.” She beamed as she chatted about seeing Old Faithful with her husband and two children.

I find it strange that people feel a sight isn’t worth seeing unless it’s hundreds of miles away. When I lived in Utah and work kept me close to home most of the year, weekends would often find me out exploring nearby landscapes.

Yellow pansies soaked with morning dew. -- Photo by Pat Bean

One Saturday it might just be a 20-mile journey on an unpaved canyon road to view “Tea Kettle” rock. Or on a Sunday, I would take a 150-mile round trip drive to board the old Heber Creeper train for the half-day ride through incredible scenery to Bridal Veil Waterfalls up Provo Canyon.

But while I’m addicted to the travel and the wonder that goes with it, I still know that most days all I need to do is step out my door to see something magical.

Yesterday it was a colorful sky with rays of sunlight streaming down toward earth. Today, as I walked Maggie, it was the magic of pink flowers poking up through a bed of last fall’s leaves.

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