I'm sitting at a bustling coffee shop in downtown Bentonville, Arkansas called Onyx Coffee Lab. Their other location, Apple Store-esque, looks like it could have existed in pre-pandemic San Francisco. If you've ever been to Sightglass where the roasters uniforms seemingly appear to be denim, slicked back hair, and tattoos - here you're more likely to see a mullet probably covered in a hat, among other middle of the country vibes. I've just finished up a 4 night stay at a room I rented through Airbnb. It was a beautifully kept 3 bedroom 2 bath home in Cave Springs, AR. Mark, the host, was very welcoming, and on top of the comfortable place to crash and relax, there was Archie. I'm embracing this nomad life and I wonder why I didn't do this sooner. Over the last month I've gone on the most epic road trip of my life driving through 11 states, tent camping for 6 nights, lodge 3 nights, hotel 2 nights, and having slept in my car a few more nights at truck or rest stops to maximize the speed at which I could travel. It was exhilarating. It all started with a stay at The Bike Inn, which I shared briefly in my last update. I was inpsired to get my own mountain e-bike and travel the country exploring national parks and riding their trails. My first stop on the trip was in Kansas City, and then a couple of nights in Nebraska and Wyoming before I made to the world famous Yellowstone National Park. The first national park. It was massive and could have been the size of a small country.
I can't express enough about how beautiful Wyoming is, at least in the summer. The caldera that Yellowstone exists upon has created such rich natural features from geysers to waterfalls all nestled in the high country. Here's a short video I put together from my time in Yellowstone.
The beauty of Wyoming doesn't stop there. On my last day in Wyoming I decided to spend it in Grand Teton National Park. The park felt like a smaller, more intimate, bougie place with expansive flat lands to view the picturesque Tetons. I rode my bike over 20 miles to experience it. And the bike riding continued. After departing Wyoming I headed to Utah. The bottom of the state. It feels and looks like Arizona. I spent 3 nights at Zion National Park. The most visited portion of the park is nestled in a red rock canyon with the virgin river streaming through it.
And then there was Vegas. An unexpected diversion from touring national parks, but I had to see Jimmy Eat World and my buddy Patrick. We had a blast and all the comforts of modern civilization. After 2 nights doing all the things in Vegas I was ready to head to the mountains. From there drove out to Colorado to experience some hikes and tent camping in Rocky Mountain National Park. Alpine lakes, tundra, and trees as far as the eye could see. It was a different mountain experience that I was so happy to have had. Next up is establishing my home base in the Bentonville, Arkansas area. This mostly involves moving all my stuff to a storage unit for easy access while I live nomadically and use the area as a central point of all my travels. I'll be dreaming about where to travel to next.