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The 6 Best Camping Places In The US That You Shouldn’t Miss

The 6 Best Camping Places In The US That You Shouldn’t Miss

For nearly 100 years, the National Park Service has been connecting us with nature. From sea to shining sea our national parks represent all the natural splendor and rich heritage of America. One of the best ways to experience these beautiful landscapes is to spend some time exploring all their crevices. Without the distractions of technology and work, you and your family can escape the mundane every day and see some truly unique scenery. The following list describes 6 of the best camping places our nation has to offer.

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Yellowstone National Park

    (Photo Credit: Flickr)

    No guide for camping in a national park would be complete without mentioning this iconic location. As the first national park, Yellowstone National Park offers gorgeous natural settings. Bison and elk graze the majestic plains as in the days of covered wagons. Guests can take advantage of the historic setting with horseback rides through the back country. The park offers 12 campgrounds; five available for reservation and seven on a first-come-first-serve basis. With over 2,000 sites, prices range from $15-$27 a night. Year round options are available for RV, primitive and established sites.

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    Acadia National Park, Maine

    Acadia National Park, Maine

      (Photo Credit: Flickr)

      If the smell of sea salt and chance encounters with marine life excite you, then this is the park for you. Located on the scenic shores of the northeast, this park offers excellent exploration of tide pools. These small pools created by receding tides each day provide an exceptional opportunity to interact with starfish and sea urchins. Not to mention the occasional whale sighting off shore. The Seawall campground offers sea-side camping between the months of May and September. While primitive camping is available year round at Blackwoods campground sites. Pricing at Blackwoods varies depending on the time of year — $10 a night from April to November and $30 a night between May and October. Prices at Seawall range from $22 to $30.

      Olympic National Park, Washington

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      Olympic Park, Washington

        (Photo Credit: Flickr)

        This gem of the northwest offers a chance to camp in three different ecosystems, including a rain-forest. After a relaxing night under the stars, guests are welcome to explore the world’s largest Sitka Spruce tree. If the sea draws you in, then be sure to check out the state’s most northern beach. La Push beach has been one of the best places for whale spotting during migration season. The average cost of staying in one of the park’s 16 campgrounds is $20 a night. Offered on a first-come-first-serve basis, these sites have a variety of primitive, walk-in, hike-in, drive-in and RV accessible spots. Although most sites are closed in the winter months, primitive camping is open year round.

        Arches National Park, Utah

        Arches National Park, Utah

          (Photo Credit: Flickr)

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          Whether you enjoy the sun or have an affection for road runner cartoons, this park is a delight. Home to over 2,000 natural red stone arches, this park could double for a Looney Tunes backdrop. Devil’s garden is the sole campground in this park and is open all year. However, reservations are recommended for the most popular months of April to October. Prices range from $20 to $25 a night and include RV spaces. There are also sites for large groups of up to 50 that are priced at $3 a person, per night.

          Pisgah National Forest, North Carolina

          Pisgah National Forest, North Carolina

            (Photo Credit: Flickr)

            This forest haven is a must for hiking enthusiasts. It offers a wide range of trails and even connects to the famous Appalachian Trail. While on the trail be sure to take in one of the numerous waterfalls. The nearby area was given the name “land of waterfalls” because of these pristine towers of water. There are 11 established camping grounds in the forest. Most site are closed in the winter months; however, there are several that remain open year round. There are also a number of dispersed sites located near the majestic Blue Ridge Parkway.

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            Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska

            Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska

              (Photo Credit: Flickr)

              The name of this park says it all. Glacier Bay is a true national treasure, one of the last true frontiers left. This park really defines the idea of roughing it. The lack of established trails provides the perfect chance to break out your paddle and hit one of the park’s two rivers. Once you reach shore at Bartlett Cove, the park’s only campground, your real adventure begins. Bartlett is a primitive camping area available completely free of charge to guests. However an orientation session is required for your stay. Or if you desire the “call of the wilderness,” you can strike out by kayak for backcountry camping.

              Like America, these parks are diverse and wonderful. Anyone one of them would be a great place for a camping adventure.

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              Paisley Hansen

              Freelance Writer

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              Last Updated on July 10, 2020

              How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

              How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

              We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

              We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

              So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

              Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

              What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

              Boundaries are limits

              —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

              Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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              Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

              Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

              Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

              How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

              Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

              1. Self-Awareness Comes First

              Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

              You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

              To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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              You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

              • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
              • When do you feel disrespected?
              • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
              • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
              • When do you want to be alone?
              • How much space do you need?

              You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

              2. Clear Communication Is Essential

              Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

              Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

              3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

              Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

              That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

              Sample language:

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              • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
              • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
              • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
              • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
              • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
              • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
              • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

              Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

              4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

              Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

              Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

              Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

              We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

              It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

              It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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              Final Thoughts

              Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

              Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

              Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

              The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

              Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

              Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

              They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

              Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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