Spontaneous Adventure Travel

words and photos by Lindsay Kuczera ::

On a quest for tall peaks and new territories, I flew to Denver with three outdoor women, embarking on what we dubbed our “National Park Backpacking Road Tour.” We carved out a semi-circle route from Colorado to South Dakota, bought one-way tickets, and reserved a rental car for two weeks. We were ready for adventure travel.

Beyond that, we only planned to plan nothing.

As someone who loves to plan ahead, this philosophy was stressful. The most exciting part of a trip was when I had the chance to research, schedule, and book. But by the time I returned home, I learned that letting go, having no agenda, and following intuition could allow for the most exciting and carefree of experiences.

Spontaneous Adventure Travel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rocky Mountain

Our first stop, Rocky Mountain National Park, welcomed us with an hour-long hailstorm. We waited it out in the car before beginning our hike to the backcountry site. During our two-day excursion, we passed lush plant life in the lower wetlands and hiked steep sections that reached elevations of more than 10,000 feet. From these heights, we were rewarded with views of evergreen forests and mountain lakes.

Two women hike with backpacks along a rocky trail

Kelly and Carly, two of my companions, turn the corner of the trail on our backcountry hike in Rocky Mountain National Park.

A sunset in the desert

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Arches

Driving from Colorado to Utah put us in Arches National Park after sundown, but we awoke to see it rising over the red rock from our tent site in Devil’s Garden Campground. Later, we found a secluded section of trail that wandered through mixed grasslands and expanse of barren rock.