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AFAR Explorer′s Wishlist
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71895 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
For such a remote region, Big Sur has more than its share of amazing places to stay. One of the most unique is Treebones Resort, nestled high in the foothills of South Big Sur overlooking the Pacific. The off-the-grid property offers 16 signature...
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In L.A., the land of Hollywood, fancy cars and fashion, there is a refuge for those trying to exist in the city. Located only three stops from Union Station exists the craziest hostel I have ever slept in. The owners have created a safe space for...
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778 Hawthorne St, Monterey, CA 93940, USA
After staying at a luxury hotel like the Portola, moving to a youth hostel seemed like a major down grade. But I forgot how hostels are meant for poor travelers to support their needs. Free pancakes, 25-cent coffee and wifi... this place is...
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1658 Front St, San Diego, CA 92101, USA
The Travelers Adventure Hostel is very unique in that they really want to encourage you to experience San Diego. When you stay here, just let them know the types of activities you enjoy and they will create a customized itinerary for you to make...
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Summit Lake, California, USA
Visited Lassen National Park in late July with the goal to kayak in Summit Lake but found it much too icy. Still had a great time hiking around the volcano.
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NW Glisan St, Portland, OR 97209, USA
You can catch a glimpse of Mount Hood looming on the horizon from the city of Portland, Oregon. Look through the Douglas firs and find it. If you're in Portland, seek higher ground—preferably a rooftop or balcony—crack open a Mirror Pond, Rogue,...
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Lozovac, Croatia
Skradinski Buk is the name given to the series of tiers of cascades and waterfalls located in Krka National Park. The water flows from the Krka River and the volume is so great that it literally thunders as it rages, full force, over the karst...
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Purdon Rd, Nevada City, CA 95959, USA
I just spent the weekend following the 4th of July up near Nevada City. It got over 90 degrees during the day, so we headed to the river. Although lots of people had similar ideas, I was with a local who directed us to this spot and we had it to...
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Presidio Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94129, USA
Artist Andy Goldsworthy's Wooden Line meanders its way through a grove of Eucalyptus in the Presidio, inviting all to take off shoes and balance beam through the forest. The sculpture, formed from the trunks of eucalyptus, gently curves its way...
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3901 Packer Lake Rd, Sierra City, CA 96125, USA

My wife, Robin, and I have been camping, fishing, and hiking in the Lakes Basin area, near Sierra City, since we met. These days, our usual home base is a tiny log cabin at the edge of Packer Lake, pictured here. From trailheads around Packer you...

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Supai, AZ 86435, USA
There’s a reason this is one of the most iconic spots along the Grand Canyon. Located on the Havasupai Indian Reservation and hidden deep within a 20-mile round-trip hike, Havasu Falls’ sparkling turquoise waters are a popular...
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4050 Red Rock Loop Rd, Sedona, AZ 86336, USA
The red rocks around Sedona are a trekker's dream, and if you know where to go, you can jump in a creek as well. Just to the southwest of Sedona, check out Red Rocks State Park. Take a short hike then cool off with a swim below Cathedral Rock. (By...
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Diablo Lake, Washington 98283, USA
In the summer, take at least a couple of days to drive the North Cascades Loop — four hundred miles of alpine splendor just to the northeast of Seattle, just south of the Canadian border. At Diablo Lake, pull off the highway and check out the...
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Garibaldi Lake, Squamish-Lillooet D, BC V0N, Canada
With aqua blue lakes, it is hard not to be tempted to hike into Garibaldi Lake Campground and explore the area of Panorama Ridge and Black Tusk. With phenomenal views, it is worth the work of getting there. Even though a day hike to Panorama Ridge...
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45500 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
One of my favorite campgrounds in Big Sur is the big open meadow at Andrew Molera State Park. It's great for large groups and it's one of the best bases for hiking and surfing in the area. More than 20 miles of trails run throughout the park's...
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Arizona, USA
If you know your flight path is going to go over the Grand Canyon, get a window seat. Even from thirty-some-thousand feet above, the chasms within chasms stretch on to the horizon...
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Yosemite National Park, 1 Ahwahnee Drive, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
Although a very popular hike in the Yosemite Valley, the hike past Vernal Falls up the mist trail to Nevada Falls is magical in the Springtime. Personally, I think this is the best spot to stop and have lunch. However, Be sure to check the signs...
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52801 California State Route 1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
After five hours in the car, I was more than happy to hop out and hike the 1.4 miles out to Pfeiffer Burns State Park and get the prize of a beautiful waterfall. The water's color is an unreal sea blue/green that I have never seen before. The best...
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Blue River, OR 97413, USA
A black, awe-inspiring lava landscape is the welcome mat to our trek into Oregon's iconic volcano reserve. The Three Sisters: Faith/North, Hope/Middle, and Charity/South are ringed by a trail network that includes a stretch on the infamous Pacific...
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Oregon, USA
Crater Lake is a must if you drive on the 5 through Oregon. Be aware that as the winter approaches the roads get icy, snowy and the temperature drops at least 10-15 degrees from bottom to top. It's a beautiful peaceful drive to the peak of what...