Building an Itenerary

Public health officials across the country are arguing that camping is the safest thing to be doing during covid. I built a moving cabin in order to do more camping and spend time away from other people.
Since everything is work-from-home, including school, there is really no reason to be anywhere in particular. I decided not to waste this opportunity, and to hit the road and safely see the country while the apocalypse unfolds.
What else am I going to do this year? With satellite internet and cell phone service, I can work from home anywhere on the continent just as easily as being here at home bored out of my mind and staring at a screen all day every day.

National Parks

Randy Olson developed and published the following route for visiting all the national parks (In the 48 states) as efficiently as possible;

I will be basing my trip on this route, with detours for other interesting destinations I want to visit. Because I am going to be visiting so many national parks, it makes sense to get a park pass rather than paying separate daily fees at all the parks.


About ten years ago, I drove across the country in order ot move my grandparents to California. Everywhere we stopped was basically truck stops and hotels. The food options were boring so I always ordered the same thing, a club sandwich. This was funny and meta but in retrospect kind of boring. This time, I am interested in sampling the local flavor.

Here are the guides I will be looking at:


Mostly Free

It may come as a surprise but it’s actually very easy to camp for free and there are lots of great free places to camp. BLM/USDA sites are usually free, and there are millions of acres where dispersed camping is free.
I recently did a completely free week-long trip to the Mammoth Lakes area in California. On this much longer trip, I’ll also be staying mostly at free sites.


Tentative Itinerary

Here is my full working-list of places and things I want to visit and see. Camping has been arbitrarily banned in California for the next few months despite being the safest thing to do right now according to public health departments across the country, therefore I will be skipping the California parks until the end of the trip.

  • January 1 – February 22
    • Mammoth Lake Hot Springs, California
    • Salton, California
    • Slab City, California
      • Oasis Club
      • East Jesus
      • West Satan
      • The Range
      • Slab City Hot Springs
      • Salvation Mountain
    • Quartzsite, Arizona
    • Arcosanti, Arizona
    • Saguaro National Park, Arizona
    • Meteor Crater, Arizona
    • Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
    • Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona
    • Earthship Biotecture, Taos, New Mexico
    • Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico
    • Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas
    • Big Bend National Park, Texas
    • Yosemite National Park, California (I know that doesn’t make any sense right?)
    • Take a break at home
  • March 2 – May 10
    • The Very Large Array, New Mexico
    • Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas
    • Everglades National Park, Florida
    • Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
    • Biscayne National Park, Florida
    • Congaree National Park, South Carolina
    • Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee
    • The Garden, Lafayette, Tennessee
    • Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky
    • New River Gorge National Park and Preserve, West Virginia
    • Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
    • Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia
    • Yorktown Battlefield, Virginia
    • Washington DC
      • Capitol Mall
      • Trowbridge House
    • Philadelphia
      • Liberty Bell
      • Independence Hall
    • New York, New York
      • Statue of Liberty
    • New Haven, Connecticut
      • Trowbridge Park
      • Yale Campus
    • Acadia National Park, Maine
    • Northeastern Point
    • Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio
    • Tribal Revival, The Farm, Lafayette, Tennessee
    • Isle Royale National Park, Michigan (Closed)
    • Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
    • Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota
    • Badlands National Park, South Dakota
    • Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota
    • Devil’s Tower National Monument, Wyoming
    • Take a break at home (May 10)
  • May 24 – August 2
    • (This leg of the trip goes in the reverse direction because it just seems to make more sense that way.)
    • Great Basin National Park, Nevada
    • Zion National Park, Utah
    • Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
    • Antelope Canyon, Arizona
    • Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
    • Cedar Breaks National Monument, Utah
    • Navajo Lake, Utah(?)
    • Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
    • Arches National Park, Utah
    • Canyonlands National Park, Utah
    • Monument Valley, Arizona
    • Four Corners
    • Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado
    • Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, Colorado
    • Pagosa Springs
    • Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado
    • Denver, Colorado (?)
    • Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
    • Take a break at home (August 2)
  • ??
    • Burning Man(?)
  • September 13 – December 31
    • Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
    • Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
    • Glacier National Park, Montana
    • North Cascades National Park, Washington
    • Mount Rainier National Park, Washington
    • Olympic National Park, Washington
    • Tree of Life, Washington
    • Jantzen Beach RV Resort, Portland, Oregon
    • Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
    • Mount Ashland Campground, Ashland, Oregon (The Dyrt)
    • Redwood National and State Parks, California
    • Lassen Volcanic National Park, California
    • Yosemite National Park, California
    • Pinnacles National Park, California
    • Channel Islands National Park, California
    • Kings Canyon National Park, California
    • Sequoia National Park, California
    • Death Valley National Park, California
      • Saline Valley Hot Springs, Death Valley, California
      • The Racetrack, Death Valley, California
      • Ubehebe Crater, Death Valley, California
      • Zabriskie Point, Death Valley, California
      • Aguereberry Point, Death Valley, California
      • Dante’s View, Death Valley, California
    • California City, California
    • Joshua Tree National Park, California
    • Done!