Travel Archives

Bucket List — Yellowstone National Park

Last year I wrote a post called “What’s on your Bucket List?” Last week I went on a trip with my husband to check off an item on his bucket list — Yellowstone National Park, America’s first national park. . Unfortunately, entry to Yellowstone required a four-wheel drive vehicle and our rental car did not fit the requirement. Hence, we put “Plan B” into action. Not being able to get into Yellowstone gave us a unique opportunity to see other parts of Wyoming and Colorado that we had not included on our itinerary.

One of the most interesting things about the trip was that while citizens of Wyoming and Colorado live in the same country as I do, the weather and terrain can dictate how they live. We drove about 500 miles from Denver to Jackson Hole, Wyoming and saw houses/farms that were miles apart from each other. I can’t imagine a life with my neighbors being miles away.

In our long drive we constantly saw signs that read, “Road Closed When Flashing” on major highways. Can you imagine trying to get to work and having to turn around because a major artery is closed? Or, you’re happily cruising along and you see a sign that says, “Turn off cruise control. Reduce speed. Strong wind gusts possible 45+ mph.” We even experienced a wind storm while driving in Wyoming and that night as the winds picked up, it felt as though the hotel roof could be ripped off at any time. Being in a corner room on the top floor was even more frightening. The next morning we heard on the news that a semi-trailer had over-turned on Interstate 25 due to the strong winds.

Then a couple of days later while in Denver, a strong spring storm came through causing extensive hail damage and canceled flights. We were at the Rocky Mountain National Park just north of Denver and saw dark skies, but no rain. We considered ourselves very fortunate. We know how hail can damage cars and we had no desire to return our rental car covered with hail damage.

So although we failed to get to Yellowstone National Park on our “Bucket List,” we had many memorable experiences (including temperatures that ranged from the 30’s to the 90’s) that more than made up for our disappointment. As a retired senior, I’m fortunate to be able to not only travel but to allow flexibility in my life as well.

What’s on your Bucket List?

Pacific Coast Highway

Pacific Coast Highway courtesy of National Geographic

Sooner or later, we must depart this earth. But before we do, many of us seniors have travel on our “bucket list.” A couple of years ago, the founder of Bottom Line/Retirement published a little booklet called “Get the Best From Life After 50.” In it, he cites Patricia Schultz, author of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die and 1,000 Places to See in the United States Before You Die. He says the following truly stand out as breathtaking and inspiring — 7 natural wonders.

  1. Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Arizona
  2. Denali National Park, Alaska
  3. Pacific Coast Highway, California
  4. Middle Fork of the Salmon River, Idaho
  5. Glacier National Park, Montana
  6. Gettysburg National Military Park and Cemetery, Pennsylvania
  7. Northeast Kingdom, Vermont

I’ve only been to Gettysburg and part of the Pacific Coast Highway. I would love to go to the other parks on the list. My husband and I have our senior pass to National Parks. It’s one of the best deals around.

What’s on your bucket list of places to see in the United States? Even if you’re not in the best of health, travel is still possible. However, travel (and life!) can only be truly enjoyed when you are in the best of health. Agree?  Vascular and circulatory issues? Check out these special vitamins. Click here for information.