Last I posted was at the beginning of this Pandemic almost one year ago. We were in Bali at that time having the most amazing trip. The tough decision was made to leave early. We came back to the United States and started our journey of self discovery in quarantine. As a nurse I was still working like usual but my husband was now working from home. Future plans of travel were off the table. We felt stuck and in a rut without the opportunities to travel.
I began the journey of becoming a better cook during quarantine. While I classify myself as a baker already, it was time to learn how to cook really good meals as well. My husband and I learned how to make sourdough bread which was probably a highlight for us both. Other ways we kept busy was my husband surfing, zoom chats with friends and eating, lots of eating. I started to dive into photography more and did photoshoots for some co-workers. Then we started recreating our travel experiences at home, like making dishes we ate in Bali or Disneyland food and rides. Here are some examples but for a full post of all the cool things we did click HERE.
As summer passed we needed a trip away, we needed to sleep somewhere else and see something new after months of the same thing. We decided to head to Utah again and then meet my husbands family to explore Yellowstone. We had one week to fit so much in and as usual we packed the trip tight!
Having already been to Utah the previous year we decided just to explore the Moab area. We landed in Salt Lake City and drove down to a town called Helper for our first night.
When my husband and I travel we love to find unique places to stay when possible. It makes the experience that much better and makes the trip more memorable. Surprisingly, Helper had some finds that were unlike anywhere we have stayed before. First night here we stayed at the Historic Conoco Filling Station. This Airbnb was located at the south end of the towns Historic Main Street. They restored this old Conoco gas station and the Western Auto Parts Store it was attached to. The actual sleeping quarters were located in the Auto Parts Store. The place was spacious and had everything we needed.
After resting up we drove two hours down to Moab to start exploring. We only had two days so we decided to spend most of our time around Arches National Park. We visited Devil’s Garden to see Landscape arch, Double arch, The Windows and saved Delicate arch at night for night time star photography.
After a full day of hiking around we grabbed some dinner in Moab at Moab Brewery and got ready for our night time hike to Delicate Arch. We started at dusk and had head lamps for when it turned too dark. As we walked up the mountain we passed by a lot of people. I thought it would be empty at the arch but to my surprise there were already photographers staking their spots. We found a spot to set up shop and started shooting away. It was nice to be able to listen to the other more experienced photographers and learn small tidbits. We only recently taught ourselves how to shoot the night sky (which is still and will continue to be a work in progress) and work with pretty midline gear, nothing too fancy here.
For our second night in the area we found some glamping tents on Airbnb. We stayed at Off Grid Canyonlands in the mountain tent. The owners, Erik and Keshia, are still building up their new glamping campsite. When we arrived they were finishing up the bathroom. Crow and Raven, the owners dogs, gave us a warm welcome too. I can’t wait to stay here again and see how they grow this glamping experience. While here we enjoyed the most comfortable beds with tons of blankets to keep us warm. We had a running toilet and hot shower which are a plus when camping. Removed from nearby towns, their location gave the best night sky.
Canyonlands National Park was next on our list to see. We did a few short walks to see a variety of sites. Then we went to Cave Springs trail which had pictographs and artifacts and was an easy but fun hike with 360 degree views at the top. Lastly, we visited Murphy point to see the Green river and Big spring canyon overlook.
Now it was time to head up to Yellowstone. We spent the night again in Helper, Utah at The Lincoln Hotel-Suite 2 which we found on Airbnb. The outside was so cute as you can see from the pictures. Inside we went up a flight of stairs to our studio. The studio has an updated kitchen and bathroom with a comfortable bed. The washer and dryer was the perfect amenity to have almost halfway through our trip. The morning before the long drive to Big Sky Montana we ate at Balance Rock Eatery and Pub. They offer your normal run of the mill diner food and it was just what we were looking for.
We met up with my husbands family and stayed at this amazing house located in Big Sky. It had a hot tub on the deck which was perfect to soak in after long days driving and hiking around Yellowstone. One morning we were greeted by this cute fella.
From here we explored the park, went on an off road experience and saw a lot of wildlife along the way like deer, bison and even a bear.
The day we went off roading was so much fun! We rented these 2 seater Polaris off road vehicles and drove in the snowy mountains for a few hours.
We got to drive around as it was snowing and drive on fresh snow that no one had driven through yet. There were a few mud puddles that we also could not resist splashing through. We saw some beautiful views and stopped at a partially frozen lake for pictures.
On the last day we visited some of the geysers, the Grand Prismatic spring, Artist Point and Mammoth hot springs. I am in awe of all of the different landscapes you can find when exploring Yellowstone. From mountains and valleys to fields and geysers.
While we only got a taste of what Yellowstone has to offer, I know we were able to see a lot of the highlights. Hopefully we can come back again soon to do more exploring!