Beautiful Day in Grand Teton National Park

Yesterday we drove into Grand Teton National Park. The mountains were even more magnificent close up. We took a hike around beautiful Jenny Lake and sat on a dock on Jackson Lake. We were hoping to see a bear (not too close though) but didn’t see any. We did see a herd of bison. Before we left the park I was happy to get a shower at one of the park’s campgrounds because I really needed to wash my hair and shave my legs, which is a little hard to do in my van sink😬 The last time I washed my hair was in a creek at our campsite in South Dakota (with biodegradable soap) which was very refreshing. The campground showers are coin operated and $5 for 7 minutes whether you are staying at the campground or not. So worth it. We then stocked up on fresh fruit and veggies in Jackson since we are doing a raw veggie and fruit cleanse. We enjoyed a nice sunset at our campsite when we got back to our homes in the forest where we have a spacious front and back yard unlike the small campsites we saw in the park 🌳

IMG_9074IMG_9079

Advertisements

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

A few nights ago we stayed overnight at a truck stop and then the next night free dispersed camping on BLM land on our way to where we are at now which is just outside of Grand Teton National Park on free dispersed camping in the Bridger-Teton National Forest. We have beautiful views of the mountains in the park from our campsite. We took a nice hike around the area. I found an old abandoned tractor to jump on. We tried walking up a steep hill trail with lots of little rocks on the trail but after slipping on the rocks (mostly me) we decided to head back down the trail in which I ended up sitting on my butt sliding down it, which made me laugh on the way down. The weather is cool here because we are at higher elevation now and we even receive cell service here. Often we do not receive cell service in the forests. However, the service isn’t that great from what we believe is because of a lot of people in the area (including in the forest) using the same cell tower as us so the only way I receive good enough cell service to allow me to post pictures on this blog was to post them right now at 2am. I woke up to go to the bathroom and decided to go online to post this. Headed back to bed now 💤

IMG_9022IMG_9025IMG_9028IMG_9040

Hobo Laundry Day

There is a nice fresh water creek that flows next to our campsite that we decided to use to wash our clothes. Mostly we just rinsed out our clothes and I used natural biodegradable soap for some of my clothes. It is kind of neat knowing that nature provides for our needs. There was a couple across the lake that was fishing while we washed our clothes yesterday that probably thought we were odd but thats fine with me😁 I drove down the road to another pretty lake where I am receiving a good enough cell signal to go online to post this and to get some work done.IMG_8999IMG_9002IMG_9006

 

Sturgis, Deadwood and Spearfish, South Dakota

I am posting this while sitting on top of a mountain that was a very steep climb but worth it for the awesome views. I am still camping in Black Hills National Forest. Over the last couple of days we visited Deadwood which is known for its lawless past and gambling and Sturgis which is known for it’s huge motorcycle rally. Today I enjoyed hiking to Spearfish Falls and hiking up the beautiful mountain that I am sitting on.

IMG_8951IMG_8956IMG_8958IMG_8987IMG_8990

Mount Rushmore and Black Hills National Forest

Yesterday we went to Mount Rushmore in South Dakota, which was pretty cool to see in person. I believe I went there when I was a kid but I don’t remember it so it’s nice to see it again. We are now camping for free in the Black Hills National Forest on a pretty lake. There is no cell service at our camping area so I am in town sitting in the library where I have cell service. I also wanted some air conditioning to get out of the heat. It’s cool here at night though which is nice. We are very close to Sturgis, South Dakota that has a huge motorcycle rally coming up with approximately 500,000 people attending, so a lot of motorcycles in the area. We’re going to check out Sturgis probably tomorrow 🏍

IMG_8909IMG_8910IMG_8944IMG_8945

Cool Cave and Cool Springs in South Dakota

Today we took a tour of part of the cave system at Wind Cave National Park which was very informative and interesting. I have been to several caves and they are all unique. The caves at Wind Cave National Park have these neat honeycomb looking formations on the ceiling. We saw prairie dogs at the park that were so cute poking their heads out of their holes to the homes they dug in the ground. They live in holes all grouped together in areas called ‘dog towns’ and they make cute chirping noises. We also saw a pronghorn antelope nearby. After we left the park we stopped at some crystal clear natural made springs that were refreshing at 67 degrees. If I lived nearby I would be at the springs all of the time. I will have to find more natural made springs while traveling 💦

IMG_8855IMG_8849IMG_8874IMG_8861IMG_8886

Dang it’s Hot!

We are camping in Hot Springs, South Dakota on Angostura Reservoir which has free camping on the West side of the lake. The camping area even has fire pits and toilets (not that I will use the toilets since I heard there are a lot of flies in there). The only downside besides the flies in the area is the heat. I am going to jump in the lake to cool off after posting this. There are hot springs here but in this heat I prefer a cold lake. It is 95 degrees right now but it is supposed to get down to a cool 65 degrees tonight which will be nice for sitting around a campfire and sleeping. We are only in the area for a few days to explore Wind Cave National Park (hopefully caves=cool temperature) and Mt Rushmore and then we are headed to higher elevation to cool down. We do get excellent cell service and therefore internet here which is great for me to get some work done and update my blog 🌼

IMG_8833IMG_8834IMG_8835

No More Hotels and Rocky Mountain National Park

There wasn’t any free dispersed camping in the forest near Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado except down forest roads that we were told were very rough and required 4×4 vehicles and the campgrounds I called were booked. I have stealth parked (hiding that sleeping in my van) at many hotel parking lots so I know I can always rely on that for staying the night. However, at this one hotel I decided to ask the hotel clerk if we could pay to park overnight. After talking to her manager she said we could stay overnight in the parking lot for free since no available hotel rooms there. However, my boyfriend wanted to stay in a hotel room so we each paid for one night for the weekend at a different hotel that had availability. I don’t like wasting my money on a hotel and I prefer my comfy bed in my van to a hotel bed but I tried sleeping in the hotel bed last night. At 1am I still couldn’t get comfortable in the bed and gave up and went to my van to sleep. I am in my van bed right now to sleep again for the night. I told my boyfriend no more hotels for me, only hotel parking lots😁 I did enjoy watching movies in the hotel room and using the shower though but I would much rather stay the night in my comfy little home on wheels😊 Today we went into the park and walked around some beautiful lakes. Colorado is one beautiful state. I plan on coming back here every summer. IMG_8790IMG_8797

Fire Ban, Lots of Rain And Beautiful Scenery

I am still camping in the forest near Denver. Today we explored more of the area. We went to a lake that is very popular with fisherman and we took a hike and saw beautiful wild flowers. When we arrived at our camp area a police officer stopped by to let us know there was a fire ban, probably because it was very dry here and there has been a lot of wildfires throughout the state. One night we sat around a lamp on the ground and another night we upgraded to sitting around a propane fire pit that someone brought. The last several days have brought a lot of rain so probably no burn ban anymore but too rainy out for a campfire so everyone has been hanging out in their vans and trailers and we have had several movie nights inside 🎥

IMG_8694IMG_8695IMG_8722IMG_8743

Forest Camping Near Denver, Colorado

I am camping for free in the Pike National  Forest about one hour outside of Denver, Colorado with about ten other people for a gathering someone posted on a forum for us nomads. Almost all of us travel full-time. Some of the people I am camping with I already knew and some I just met. I have a beautiful view of the mountains from the back windows of my van. I tried downloading a picture of the view but my cell service isn’t strong enough to download pictures. I am happy that I have cell service though since I need it for work. I may be here another week although the gathering is for two weeks. There are too many places I am excited to explore. My next destination may be Badlands National Park and Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota and then on to Yellowstone and Grand Tetons National Parks in Wyoming. I try not to plan too much though. One of the many benefits of this lifestyle is that I can just decide as I go as I don’t need hotel, campground or airline reservations. I usually just wake up one day and decide I want to move on and then just drive to a new destination. I can always find a spot to park my van in a forest, city street or parking lot, no reservations required 🚐