My love of travel and my travel planning gig, all started with my first road trip at the pain-in-the-you-know-what age of 12. There was a lot of door slamming happening at home so as a way of connecting with me (and giving my mom a much need break, I assume) my dad suggested we do a weekend getaway road trip style.
There were rules (of course):
- Three Days total.
- No more than 500 miles one way.
- No more than 6-7 hours a day driving.
- We traveled the weekend before Memorial Day weekend.
- I had to plan it- all of it. (Since me doing the driving was out of the question for a few years.)
This meant using fold up maps, highlighters, and a ruler to measure the distance (one inch = 20 miles). I requested lots of travel brochures from the back of magazines. You know they have those cards that you fill out and request travel information... I filled all of those out. All. Of. Them. Didn’t matter where to.
Our first trip was Grand Teton and Yellowstone National parks--7 hours each way-ish. We made a loop out of the trip-- first stop was Jackson, WY, then Grand Teton National park followed by the lower loop in Yellowstone. ( Which in my opinion is the better of the two.) Then back home.
One of my fondest memories was how scarce radio signals were in the park, and we had forgotten the CD case. So we listened to the one CD still in the car- The Moody Blues Greatest Hits for the majority of the trip. Days Of Future Past, and Tuesday Afternoon are now embedded into my brain.
We lucked out on lodging as our only lodging reservation was in Jackson, Wyoming that first night and we totally winged it and didn't make one for the 2nd night. As luck would have it, we managed to get the last hotel room in Yellowstone Park (or so we were told) at Grant's Village. I think we paid $79 for two doubles.
We stopped at all of the Oregon Trail markers, and other historical markers. I ate at every stop and I had a steak at every dinner. The best one was at Louie's in Jackson, but it's not there anymore.
The weather totally didn't cooperate. We woke up to snow on the last day and we were not prepared wardrobe wise. (I brought one pair of jeans and one sweatshirt.) On our way home we stopped for breakfast at the Cowboy Cafe in DuBois, Wyoming and we managed to get our order in before the power went out. We just laughed and hoped breakfast came out warm and fully cooked.
My dad and I continued this annual tradition up until I had kids. Now these trips are more sporadic, but the two of us together have seen beautiful places in my great state of Colorado, as well as Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, Montana and a sliver of Idaho. These road trips sparked my love of travel and adventure. I would drive my dad bonkers by constantly talking his ear off in the months, weeks and days leading up to trip about the trip. (I still do this, to him and my poor husband.) These road trips helped me become the travel planner that I am today, and instilled that most of all we had to have FUN while connecting and exploring.
I welcome you to Your Travel Scout! I look forward to working with you and getting to know you. In these blog pages to come I hope to share with you a little more of who I am, and the travel tips that I have learned along the way. This way your trips are memorable, fun, and help you connect with yourself and those traveling with you. I would love to hear some of your most memorable travel experiences.
Here's to Happy Travels!