happy 100th, grand canyon.

In the summer of 2017, I did my first solo road trip from Dallas, TX to Portland, OR. It included the Grand Canyon National Park.

I drove over over 3000 miles in twelve days. I slept in a tent for four days, stayed in a hostel, booked three different Airbnbs (I needed to shower), and slept in my car all of the other days. I’ve never traveled alone, so the idea of doing so for almost two weeks was slightly terrifying. But… it was one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself and I had an absolute blast! I learned how to be resourceful, self-aware, flexible, and most importantly, I learned how to trust myself. I slept in super sketchy areas, but I’m happy I did. Sometimes traveling isn’t always so glamorous, but it still can be a great experience. I know I wouldn’t trade it for anything else. 💛

Michael also had to do his road trip alone because he left for Portland one month before I did, and his road trip was totally different from mine (our maps below!).

Here’s the route of most of the places I visited. ☺️

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My general route!

And this is Michael’s general road trip route below.

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Michael’s map. 💙

Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

In 1919, the Grand Canyon became a national park. In honor of its 100th this year, I wanted to just share a few of the photos from my first visit there! It was breathtakingly beautiful and incredibly hot. On my hike down Bright Angel Trail, I believe the temperatures reached over 110 degrees.

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Happy 100th anniversary!
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I only did about six miles of the Bright Angel Trail. It got way too hot for me to continue, so I turned around! Once I got back, I took the Rim Trail and it was much easier.
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Ran into some horses along the way. 🐎
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There’s something about the desert climate that I really love. (I still prefer the pacific northwest, though, don’t worry.)
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My tent set-up! I slept with the rain-fly off so I could see the stars at night.

When I was camping here, I didn’t have any service, so I couldn’t tell anyone if I made it safely or not. However, when I got into my tent, I had one tiny bar of service for a smallest of moments. So I called Michael to see if it could reach him. I remember I could hear him say “hello?” and “.. love..” and “… guanabana”. It was all broken up in parts, but it was nice to hear his voice for a second. ❤️

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Map reading and a good ol’ mountain house dinner. I love their chicken and dumplings.
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So happy I got to check this place off my national park list!


Beautiful doesn’t begin to describe it. A flower is beautiful. But this is beautiful the way that a person is beautiful- terrifying with its jagged edges, yet seductive with its crevices that hide so many secrets. Jeri Smith-Ready

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