We all slept hard, and it was time to pack up the camper and start covering ground towards home. We stayed at Arkansas River Rim Campground, and we had to take a moment to walk down to the river to take in the beauty of the area one last time before we spent the day in the car.
We departed beautiful Buena Vista, Colorado and began our trek back east. It is bittersweet to pass by many places that we might have stopped at if we had more time, but alas our time is spent. The scenery went from beautiful mountain peaks and streams to flat and sometimes stinky Kansas and Nebraska, cutting up from I-70 to I-80. I knit a bonnet, and took a snooze as Andy powered through hours of driving while we listened to Lord of the Rings on audio book.
When the kids finally stopped fighting and fell asleep, Andy and I got to share some thoughts on the trip. It’s still a bit surreal. We’ve spent a month on the road in a camper that had hardly left the driveway with no real plans or reservations, only a desire to make memories as a family. We still haven’t given the trailer a name!
I’d like to return to Utah and hike more of the Red Rocks, visit Staircase Escalante, spend more time in Moab at Arches, Zion as well as a few other surrounding parks that we didn’t make it to. Andy feels like there is much more to Yellowstone we didn’t experience, including driving Beartooth highway and many hiking trails. I’d love to do an overnight hike at Grand Canyon. We talked about a trip down Route 66, a trip to Glacier, and other future camping adventures that I look forward to planning. What a blessing this house on wheels is to us!
I’m so proud of the kids. They have been brave when even I was uncomfortable on some of our hikes, they walked hundreds of miles with us (most times in unrelenting heat and sun), and they completed numerous Junior Ranger programs which helped them practice writing, researching and learned about our national treasures. All this with little to no screen time, save a few movies we watched as a family in the camper.
We are all looking forward to cuddling our kitties and seeing familiar faces. It’s been a long day of driving and we are all anxious to be home!