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NATIONAL PARKS 101 – Deciphering NPS designations, maps and stats

When we cooked up the idea for visiting all the U.S. National Parks we had no clue how many National Parks there actually were, much less how the National Park System was organized. Then as we described our idea to others, we realized that many of them were as clueless as we used to be…. Read more »

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WHY U.S.?: Our Goal to Promote Traveling Close to Home

As we prepare to take off for a year, we have been carefully considering the kind of ideas we want to stand for and promote to others. We will be sharing, sharing, sharing and we want our message to be clear. So what is our message, exactly? We believe firmly in a few things surrounding this trip,… Read more »

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MY TOUR OF CHINA IN 22 TWEETS THAT NEVER HAPPENED

OK, I admit, this post doesn’t technically relate to any of the subjects this blog is about. But it’s also about pushing your boundaries and having adventures. And I did plenty of that during my tour of China!  I just got back from 2 weeks in China where I was on a volunteering trip sponsored by First… Read more »

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VIDEO: Meet the Switchback Kids

If you’ve been reading our posts, you probably know a little about the two crazies that make up the Switchback Kids team. You know that we love to hike. You may know that we are going on a year-long tour of all 59 of the U.S.’s National Parks. And you may even know how we decided… Read more »

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5 TRAILS IN 5 DAYS CHALLENGE {& MY TRAINING PLAN!}

In just a little over a month, Cole and I will be officially taking off on our journey of a lifetime. The journey will include biking, kayaking, photography, and climbing, but above all – hiking. We want to have the energy and stamina to pull 10-mile hiking days often enough to make the most of… Read more »

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WHAT THE HECK IS A SWITCHBACK KID?

It didn’t take us long after coming up with the idea for traveling to all 59 parks over the course of the NPS Centennial year before we had designs on making this trip more than just a personal adventure. One of the things we immediately decided was to keep a blog to document the triumphs… Read more »

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5 WAYS WE GET CHEAP QUALITY GEAR

As most of you know, a huge supporting pillar in the National Parks adventure ahead of us is our budget. I think it’s the most common question I’ve gotten when I tell people about our trip: how will you afford that? Cole and I are young — about to turn 26 this summer — but I like to think… Read more »

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MAKING THE MOST OF A TOUGH SITUATION: OURAY, COLORADO

I can’t believe we haven’t shared the story of last year’s summer vacation gone so, so wrong. We had planned an amazing week-long road trip through the southwest, taking us up and down our second fourteener, through Monument Valley and Antelope Canyon, in and out of the Grand Canyon (my first time!), and culminating in… Read more »

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VIDEO: Our Someday

In many ways, Cole and I feel lucky to have the opportunity to travel the country starting this August. Blessed to have the resources. Grateful for the freedom. But in other ways, we feel like it’s simply the stride toward clarity and the return to simplicity that we (and probably many other people) need to take. A grand… Read more »