Travelin' Jo, 2018

Click on any picture to see it full-size.

In 2017, I was looking at maps, and that is when I realized that Glacier, Yellowstone, Grand Teton and Rocky Mountain National Parks are all pretty close together (relatively speaking), and that if you drove from Spokane to Denver, you could go to all four parks within a 900 mile or so drive.

And so the plan was born to do this in a two week period in 2018.

But how was I to get to Spokane? Why, I'd drive up through Oregon and Washington, visiting friends the whole way. And then I'd drive home from Denver, taking a week or to to do so, and having more camping and traveling fun.

Then I looked at a calendar. I know that the only month I would be happy going that far north was August, because I hate cold and snow. I had also made reservations in mid-2017, for Comic-con in San Diego (July 18-22) and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon from September 6-10. So I had to fit this summer trip in between the two of those.

Doug was interested in the Oregon week ending in Spokane, so that would have to start on a Friday to go in with his work schedule. And I wanted to be home by September 2 to have a couple of days to unpack and sleep before we left for Ashland.

Plus I was going to camp in Death Valley for a few days before Comic-con, and spend a night in Riverside with my friend Jo Nell on the way home from San Diego.

So this became the plan:

  • Sunday, July 15 to Wednesday, July 18 camping in Death Valley
  • Wednesday, July 18 to Sunday, July 22 at Comic-con in San Diego
  • Drive home Sunday and Monday, arriving the afternoon of Monday, July 23.
    three days of sleep and laundry and repacking
  • Friday, July 27 to Saturday, August 4- Oregon and Washington with Doug, flying him home on Saturday, August 4
  • Sunday, August 5 to Saturday, August 18- driving from Spokane to Denver, visiting Glacier, Waterton (in Canada), Grand Teton, Yellowstone and Rocky Mountain National Parks, camping for a few days in each, and a couple of motels in between for showers and laundry and sleeeep
  • Leave Denver on Sunday, August 19 and go home, arriving no later than Sunday of Labor Day Weekend
    two days of sleep and laundry and unpacking
  • Leave for Ashland on Wednesday, September 5, have a wonderful time, and get home on the 10th.

And it just got more complicated and fun...

So here is the whole thing, broken up into manageable pieces for your delectation, pictures, maps and stories and all

Part 1
Camping in Death Valley
July 15-18
Jim and JoAnn camp, hike, and generally have a good time in the hottest place on earth in the middle of summer.
Part 2
Comic-Con San Diego
July 18-22
JoAnn and Megan in Geek Central.
Part 3
Oregon and Washington
July 27-August 4
Doug and JoAnn drive north through Oregon to Spokane, doing stuff and visiting friends and family the whole way.
Part 4
Montana, Wyoming and Colorado
August 5-18
JoAnn and Kelly visit five national parks and do other fun stuff for two weeks. Special Guest Appearance by Ellen for Grand Teton and Yellowstone NPs

 • Glacier and Waterton Lakes • Yellowstone and Grand Teton •
• Rocky Mountain • 

Part 5
Six Days in Colorado
August 18-24
JoAnn, Jo Nell and Chris drive, hike, climb all the stairs on the planet and see a lot of great stuff, with much eating, drinking and laughing included.
Part 6
Utah, Arizona, Nevada...and home.
August 24-September 2
JoAnn and the Squirrel Lady camp, hike and kayak all over the Southwest.


I have a wonderful Panasonic Lumix ZS-50 that I love love love. I am very hard on my cameras and seem to destroy one a year. This is getting pretty expensive, truth to tell, but there it is. Everyone else who took pictures gave me copies and I credited them either in the text of the web pages (if it's just a couple of pictures) or by adding an initial to the end of the photo name if they gave me a lot of pictures. Many people used their iphones; Jim also used his ipad, Kelly had a very old Lumix (a ZS-25, I think, and I heard it's now given up the ghost.) I think Jo Nell has the same kind of Lumix I do, and the Squirrel Lady had both her phone and a Canon camera.

Photo credits: j for Jim, k for Kelly, e for Ellen, c for Chris, n for Jo Nell, and s for Squirrel Lady. The pictures are named [letters][sequential numbers]. The thumbnails have an a on the end. Pictures by the above people will have their initial after the sequential number, and (in the case of the thumbnail) before the a. mwc01ka.jpg means it's from the montana/wyoming/colorado section, picture number 1, kelly took it, and it's a thumbnail. Oh, and the kayak guides on Lake Powell took pictures and shared them with all of us, those are labeled kayak(number). Yes, I am very organized.