2019 Rookie Roadsters Recap

Now that we’ve finished all our travels for 2019, it’s time for a recap!!!


# of miles Woody traveled:

10,323 miles

# of places Woody parked:

36 including……

2 Harvest hosts (FL, AZ)

2 National Rec areas (Lake Powell, Lake Mead )

6 State parks (LA, TX, UT, CO, UT, WY)

1 county park (FL)


15 Independent parks

1 National park (CO)

1 private park made just for us (Gramma Peepa)

# of States we touched: 28

# of National Parks visited: 12 (in alphabetical order Arches, Big Bend, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Canyonlands, Glacier, Grand Canyon, Great Smoky Mountains, Joshua Tree, Mesa Verde, Petrified Forest, Yellowstone, Zion)

# of Junior Ranger Badges earned: 35 each

# of steps walked: 3,000,000 ish (so double that for the girls!)

# of inches the kiddos grew taller: 14 combined between the 3!

# of truckers who honked for us: after all those tries only 2 — both when we were back in NC!

# of hours of Adventures in Odyssey listened to: 35

Seasons of the Walton’s we streamed to the computer on some dark/cold nights: 3

We really didn’t eat out a lot or experiment in foods around the country. But our fave food finds were: beignets in NOLA, Mexican Mi Tierra at the historic market in San Antonio, Fresh tortilla wraps off the conveyer belt at HEB, huckleberry ice cream in Montana and Yellowstone, Blaze Pizza in Palm Springs.

Fave new franchise finds:

Panda Express & Five Guys

Most consistent franchise across the nation: Texas Roadhouse

Least expensive “rent” per night: $20 (such a great place in CA — so great we don’t want to tell anybody about in haha)

Most expensive “rent” per night: $91 (Moab, UT) and $98 (Yellowstone)


Fave “full-time families” we met:


Love On The Bumpy Road

Let’s Travel Family

The Curious Cotters

Fave vacationing family we crossed paths with:

Our best friends for a few days (in Moab) from Switzerland! Hi friends! 🙂

Fave animal sightings :

  • Moose in Glacier!
  • Mountain lion in Yellowstone!
  • Sea lions at La Jolla
  • Kit fox at Joshua Tree
  • Hawk at Yellowstone
  • Bull elk & bugling at Yellowstone
  • Baby goats in Monticello, FL
  • Crane and dolphins sunset in FL
  • Yellow-bellied marmot Yellowstone
  • Owl – FL
  • Honorable mentions since they weren’t wild encounters: Sea World…. and giraffe, kangaroos, and prairie dogs at Brevard Zoo

Fave hikes:

  • Glacier NP – Virginia Falls Trail, Avalanche Lake Trail
  • Big Bend NP – Lost Mine, Balanced Rock, Santa Elena Canyon
  • Arches NP – Delicate Arch & Double O Arch in Devils Garden
  • Grand Canyon NP – Kaibab, Bright Angel
  • Joshua Tree NP – Ryan Mountain
  • Ouray, CO – perimeter trail
  • Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP – Warner Trail


  • There are only 2 things you can find anywhere you are in the US, no matter how far out in the middle of nowhere you go! Canadian Geese and Hispanic radio stations. Now isn’t that ironic? Lol !!!!
  • Places we felt like we were not on the planet earth anymore: Yellowstone – geothermal basins and also mammoth hot springs, Antelope Canyon in AZ
  • Best roads: Utah
  • Worst roads: Navajo nation, western Louisiana, South Carolina, Indiana
  • Friendliest place we visited…I would also say place with hardest workers and cleanest place overall from the roads, grocery stores, even fast food places: San Antonio
  • Least friendly area: northwest Utah & Cortez, Colorado, NOLA on Super Bowl Sunday
  • Best public bathrooms: Louisiana welcome center
  • Worst bathrooms you could ever imagine in your life: 4 corners monument and Yellowstone morning glory trail pit toilets
  • Unexpected awesomeness: our National Park Service Park Rangers! They were amazing! Great communicators, patient, friendly, knowledgeable. We loved them all. Canyonlands and Arches stand out as the best of the best. I have to write a letter!
  • Food the kids officially dislike because we ate it so much: grilled chicken
  • There are a lot of horses in Colorado
  • New Mexico surprisingly has a lot of cows

Beautiful, spiritual moments with the Lord and each other:

  • E journaling at Wickham and sensing the Lords presence
  • Learning about and being truly astonished by the stars in the Marathon, TX black sky
  • Teary-eyed first look at the Grand Canyon and then the gospel displayed in creation with Canyon Ministries sunset tour
  • Moon rise at Lone Rock – Lake Mead
  • Special godly encouragement from our immediately-close friends in our dry desert time in Holbrook, AZ

Special experiences:

  • Girls falling in love with dolphins at Sea World
  • Seeing a baby kangaroo come out of his Mommy’s pouch – it was only the 2nd time in his life!
  • Listening to jazz up close and personal at Preservation Hall in NOLA
  • Banner day with a true feeling of teamwork and victory after 17 miles on the bikes in San Antonio
  • Soaking in the natural hot springs and then jumping in and floating down the Rio Grande
  • Girls first MLB game in San Diego!
  • Rafting on the Colorado – the true pure joy and thankfulness RR felt and expressed
  • Stars at Arches
  • Sunset on the Pacific Ocean
  • S’Mores, the sweetest horse ever, at the views. Watching the sunset and enjoying the campfire with him. Then him running home when he heard coyotes.
  • Off-roading at Big Bend and Potash
  • Visits from MomMom, Pa, Gramma, Peepa, Irelyn!!!
  • The Lord sending us friends to celebrate with us for AB and RR birthdays on the road!
  • Horse back riding in the Smoky’s
  • Snow days with cousins in Jersey

Coming up next ….. if I can try to get it expressed in writing…lessons learned on the road!

6 thoughts on “2019 Rookie Roadsters Recap

  1. suppidan

    Wow, what a big journey you’ve made this year with lots of rich experiences. I think that you saw and visited more places than many people do not see in their whole life.

    … and what a big honor to be mentioned on your recap list, too:-)!

    Greetings from Switzerland

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