Our National Parks are a great example of how place connects us. They connect us to our collective past and to the majesty of the natural environment, but also to each other.
The first National Park that I ever visited was Yosemite. It came pretty late in the father-son trips that made up my childhood, but certainly took things to a whole new level. Neither of us had done any significant backpacking before this trip or spent much time in the mountain wilderness resembling anything close to the Sierra Nevadas.
It’s a good thing my dad is a planner by nature. Him being unprepared is a rarity. The planning phase of our Yosemite trip probably started a year from when we arrived. It included enough research to write a doctoral thesis and involved a strategy that felt more like preparing for battle than going on vacation. Continue reading