Edward and Margaret Gehrke, a childless couple from Lincoln, Nebraska, began traveling together to the national parks in 1915, when they stopped at the Grand Canyon on the way home from a trip to San Francisco.
For the next quarter century, traveling first by rail and then in a succession of new Buicks, the couple would visit all of the national parks that existed at the time. During each summer journey, Edward snapped photographs and Margaret recorded their adventures in her journal. The journals and photographs were eventually given to the Nebraska State Historical Society.
In the 1930s, Edward built a “house-car,” but he died in 1939 before they could drive it to a national park. In 1948, Margaret traveled once more by train to Rocky Mountain National Park, the couple’s favorite destination.
The National Parks: America’s Best Idea (PBS)
Gerhke’s journal pages from Nebraska Historical Society
Mr Chiots and I enjoy traveling, especially by car. We tend to go camping, hiking and all those kinds of activities while vacationing. We favor traveling on the back roads and talking to local people. A while ago we decided that we were going to visit all the National Parks. I visited many of them growing up, as my family enjoyed long driving/camping vacations seeing all the wonderful things this country had to offer. There are a few parks that our minivan never made it to, so I’m excited to add those to my list, especially Crater Lake. Mr Chiots is super excited to see all of them, but is especially looking forward to Mr Rushmore.
We have visited the Smoky Mountains several times and were able to visit Acadia on our trip to New England this past fall. We live fairly close to Cuyahoga National Park and have spent a lot of time hiking/driving around it.
This summer we will be spending a week in Seattle with friends, so we decided to drive out through the Northern States, visiting Theodore Roosevelt, Glacier and North Cascades National Parks. Our friends will fly out and meet us in Seattle. While there we’ll visit Mt Rainier and Olympic National Park. On our way home we’re planning on coming down through Oregon to finally check Crater Lake off my list and then head back through Idaho and Montana to visit Yellowstone, Mt Rushmore, the Badlands and any others we can fit in.
Of course we’ll be driving our MINI and hopefully pulling a little teardrop trailer we’re hoping to build this spring. We’re planning on starting a new blog just to document our travels, a journal of sorts and we may make a video diary our trips, since that’s what we do for our day jobs. I’ll be sure to let you know when that is up and running so you can check it out and see what we’re up to.
The only problem with taking three and half weeks off in the summer is that it severely cuts into my gardening time. But driving out through the northern states isn’t an option in the winter. Since you all had such great tips for our trip to New England, I figured I’d ask for any great tips, restaurants, places to see and things to do on our trip. We have yet to nail down our exact route home and we’re pretty flexible with time on that portion of our trip.
So any great suggestions for things to see/do while in Seattle? Any great recommendations for our travels to out west and back?Filed under Miscellaneous | Comments (37)