Exploring southwest USA

Painted Hills, Oregon

Painted Hills, Oregon

After having such a fabulous time in 2012, we’re about to do it again – only this time for longer.

Eddie & I were enraptured by the grandeur of the scenery and the fascinating geology on our last visit and on the itinerary this time is Nevada (again – we really like it and this time we’ll do the alien highway), a thorough exploration of southern Utah, a few more places in southwest Colorado, Arizona (including both rims of Grand Canyon), maybe New Mexico (if time allows) and then we’ll loop back to San Francisco through southern California including the Mohave Desert and Death Valley.


Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado

We learned such a lot on our last visit including an appreciation of the vastness of the USA and the complexity of it. We were impressed by the quality of the camping grounds in national and state parks, how polite people were, the excellent visitor centres, the ancientness of the landscape and were especially moved by the very old native American sites and stories of their more recent hardships.

Surprises were the fact that the US has problems with introduced pests (including NZ mudsnails) and the impunity with which native animals are killed. We saw many celebratory photographs in gas stations and the like of people posing with cougars, bears and other animals that they had killed. In NZ our native animals are so vulnerable and we spend a lot of time and money looking after them (mostly) so killing native animals for sport seemed odd to us. I am cheered to see that California has just out-lawed trapping bobcats for fur.

After collecting an RV (no station-wagon for us this time) we’ll be heading across the Sierra Nevada mountains on our way to Nevada. I’ll be posting about the interesting things that we discover – I’d love you to join us.

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Left to right; Black Canyon of Gunnison NP, Yellowstone NP, Canyonlands NP, Eddie attacking a bear.

About Julia Bradshaw

Historian and writer living in Hokitika, New Zealand. Special interests are the goldrushes, the West Coast of New Zealand, crime and the stories of women and Chinese on the goldfields. Also keen on tramping (hiking) and involved in the Mt Brown Hut Community Project.
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3 Responses to Exploring southwest USA

  1. Frosty says:

    Sue, Helen, Christine & I are wondering if you made it and all’s well?!
    Cheers ears, Frosty

    • Hi, sorry not to have been in touch. We’ve been in the mountains & out of coverage area. Everything is going really well now that we gave over our bad colds. In nevada now. I Will post something soon I hope. Xxxx

  2. Joy Baker says:

    You have whet my appetite for another trip and to follow your advice of spending longer. Travel safe and enjoy.

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