The truck is all packed, Willow the Wonder Mutt is loaded up, and I am off on an official Destination Adventure road trip. I’m serious, it’s official…I have the Destination Nature magnet on the back of the truck to prove it and everything! I don’t have much of a plan, and honestly, that’s the way I prefer it. I’m excited to invite you all along for the ride though.
I’m spending my first few days “up north” in Wisconsin. If I stay up here any longer than that I might not ever leave, so it is best to keep moving. Next I’ll head west. Although I haven’t lived there in a number of years, Wyoming will always be my home state. My family roots run deep there, and I’m eager to visit the landscapes that I grew up in. I have friends from coast to coast, so who knows where I’ll head from there. Or maybe I’ll just hunker down and ride out the summer in the campsites of my childhood.
It is interesting to me that a sense of place can run so deep. I have fond memories of so many areas, and when I’m lucky enough to revisit, it always feels like I’m catching up with an old friend. I really want to check in on the stump that looks just like a coyote when the campfire glow bounces off it. There is an individual tree in Grand Teton National Park that needs a hug. Perhaps more accurately I need a hug from that tree. No other tree will do. My buddy Scott is doing a repeat backpacking trip that I’d love to join him on. In high school well pulled it off in 3 days. We’re wiser now, and he’s planning on spending about a week exploring the plants and ponds we raced by.
I’m also excited to check out new places. I certainly love to experience nature in my own backyard, but this is a road trip. I want to explore a few of those blank spots on the map that Aldo Leopold spoke of. Some of my favorite moments in nature have been spontaneous “I wonder what is over there?” moments.
As Robert Earl Keen signs, “the road goes on forever”, so here I go!