2015 Road Trip – Wrangling in the National Parks


If you can’t tell by now my family loves road trips. Our last trip was in 2013 since we took a break in 2014 due to my pregnancy. For this trip, my husband and I both wanted to go to Yellowstone National Park. He hasn’t been there since the 90’s and I haven’t been there at all. This trip would be different than the last with an addition of a 9-month old. On top of that, though our Toyota 4-Runner has served us well over the last two road trips, the upgrade to our family called for an upgrade in vehicle – the Nissan Quest. We are officially a minivan family.

Our plan was to hit up a few national parks and monuments:

  • Zion National Park (UT)
  • Yellowstone National Park (WY)
  • Devils Tower National Monument (WY)
  • Mt. Rushmore National Memorial (SD)
  • The Badlands National Park (SD)
  • Dinosaur National Monument (UT)

For the last part of our trip, we planned on ending the trip with a little more comfort by staying at cabins and then a little luxury at Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, NV. When mapped out, our route looked very much like a lasso. 

Even though we had some type of lodging for the last few stops of our trip, we are primarily a tent-camping family. We love camping for several reasons:

  • It connects us with nature
  • It strengthens our family through learning how to work together for a common goal (setting up a tent, making dinner, showers, etc.)
  • You meet great people (fellow campers) from different places
  • You find out what’s important and how many things you really don’t need (try packing a van with only the essentials for two weeks!)
  • You realize that God really does take care of us!

I received a 2015 camping report from KOA (Kampgrounds of America) and learned some interesting facts: 

  • When US campers were asked what has made the most impact on their decision to camp more this year, spending time with family and friends, seeing new destinations and lower fuel prices are the top three most impactful reasons to camp more.
  • 50% percent of campers have been introduced to camping by their parents.
  • People value technology more than toilet paper. A greater number of campers see their smartphones as an essential camping tool.

Now on to the good part… Our 2015 Road Trip Report!

Let’s start with Zion National Park


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