5 Incredible Things to do at Mt Rainier National Park

5 Incredible Things to do at Mt Rainier National Park

The 5 most incredible things to do at Mt Rainier National Park, one of the most beautiful places in Washington.

I’m a sucker when it comes to beautiful nature landscapes, lush forests, waterfalls, and, in general, Pacific Northwest vibes. Don’t believe me? Just check out my Instagram! When I received a recent invite for an InstaFam trip in Washington, including exploring the many things to do at Mt Rainier National Park, I said yes immediately.

I had heard about the magic of Mt Rainier for awhile and I’d been wanting to visit the national park for myself before I left Portland.

Life gets in the way sometimes though, and I thought I had missed my opportunity to visit the park, at least this time stateside. When I realized I would not only get to finally see the mountain up close, but to see the best things to do at Mt Rainier with a guide from Visit Rainier, I was beyond excited for the trip ahead.

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My First Visit to Mt. Rushmore & the Black Hills

Mt. Rushmore in the Black Hills of South Dakota - USA

I’ve been taking advantage of my time stateside for the last year or so. I’ve managed to travel to a handful of new states – including Hawaii, Florida, Montana, Illinois, Michigan, Idaho, Wyoming, South Dakota, and North Dakota – and in the process I’ve hit my fair share of Americana sights and monuments.

One of the most iconic ones I finally got to see this summer was Mt. Rushmore. Yes, it’s just a bunch of white dudes carved into a mountain, but it also represents 150 years of American history.

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A Scenic Idaho Road Trip: The Best Places to Visit in a Week

idaho road trip - one week

The best places to visit for a week-long scenic Idaho road trip, from the state capital to waterfalls, hot springs, and river floats.

As I mentioned in my last post about Boise, it was my first time in Idaho this summer. It’s not a hugely popular place for tourism, compared to other states around the US, and I found it to be highly underrated as a destination. Idaho is lovely in so many ways.

I did one week Idaho road trip and found myself amazed at the scenery and natural beauty everywhere. All of the Idaho license plate slogans say “the scenic state” and I could see why as soon as I hit the road.

Sadly, I didn’t get to try any potatoes, or potato ice cream (yes, that’s a thing) while I was there, but I did get to see a few sights that made me want to come back to the state soon for a longer adventure.

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The 5 Best Things to do in Grand Rapids, Michigan


The 5 best things to do in Grand Rapids, Michigan to get the most out of a lovable Midwest City that has so much history, good beer, and art.

I didn’t know what to expect with Michigan, or I should say, the Midwest in general. I wanted to explore a new area of my home country, a new city for my birthday (Chicago!), and discover a few unique all-American locales along the way.

Grand Rapids ended up being one of my favorite stops in my two weeks of travel in the region for a variety of reasons.

This past year has been all about discovering the US from the perspective of a traveler. I’ve loved seeing Montana and Florida for the first time, living in and exploring the Pacific Northwest, going back for family & friend visits to California, and now overflowing memories of my journey through the Midwest.

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Experiencing the Haleakala Crater Hike in Maui

Experiencing the Haleakalā Crater hike in Maui

Experiencing the Haleakala Crater hike in Maui. This was my experience tackling one of the most breathtaking hikes on the island.

As soon as our plane leaned towards the windswept palm trees on our descent down to Kahului Airport in Maui, I had a feeling of instant joy spread through me. A small sigh of relief escaped my lips when we landed on the tarmac with little to no turbulence, a feat for the windiest airport in Hawaii.

Coming into Maui from above, I was able to look over the landscape and see exactly what activities were in store for me – most notably, conquering Haleakala Crater hike – the largest dormant volcano in the world.

The volcano stands at over 10,000 feet and is one of the major adventure activities to do in Maui. There are bike tours at sunrise, hikes, or even bus loads that quickly take you up to the top and back down if that’s more your style.

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The Ultimate Snow Experience: Big Sky

The Ultimate American Winter Experience - Big Sky Resort

I’m still new to this whole snowboarding thing. I finally learned how to properly snowboard last month outside of Portland, at Mt. Hood Meadows, but other than that my experience in the snow has been close to nilch.

This is partly why I felt so honored to have heard back from Big Sky Resort during my recent trip to Montana with an offer of an all-access lift ticket to enjoy their slopes for the day. I would be able to improve my skills in the snow while experiencing the biggest skiing in America. Yes, this was going to be the best kind of adventure.

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The Best Ways to Enjoy Portland in Winter

The Best Ways to Enjoy Portland in Winter

Being in Portland in winter doesn’t have to mean holing up at home watching the rain outside. There is plenty to keep you busy in this city, even in the colder months!

It’s my first true winter living in a colder climate.

I grew up in California, where it generally never dips below 40 or 50 degrees in winter.

When I made a visit to NYC for New Year’s Eve a few years back, that was probably the coldest weather I experienced, but that was just for a week.

Melbourne was potentially the coldest place in winter from my time abroad, mainly due to the intense wind, but I’ve never before experienced freezing temperatures as I do here in Portland in winter.

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A Review of Mt Hood Snowboarding Lessons

A Review of Mt Hood Snowboarding Lessons

A review of Mt. Hood Snowboarding Lessons. Discover what it is like to learn how to snowboard for the first time at Mt. Hood Meadows, near Portland, Oregon.

The last time I was standing before a mountain with a board strapped to my foot was when I was 18. I was still unsure of myself and didn’t quite know the meaning of getting out of my comfort zone. This was a major reason why I wanted to take a Mt. Hood snowboarding lesson.

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