Everyone’s first question…
Montana – Spanish for Mountains. Josh and I have been venturing to the mountains together since 2012. Our first mountain vacation together was to Gatlinburg, NC. Gatlinburg is a gateway to Smoky Mountain National Park. It was then that we knew we would be venturing to the mountains for every vacation after that. We can’t get enough of them. By total chance, we planned our trip in late October, right as the leaves were changing. Me, being the planner and a naive Floridian, had NO IDEA that this would happen. But it was fate telling us that “Hey, seasons are pretty cool if you give them a try.”
Then, 1 year after being married and many other east coast Smoky vacations, we went to the Colorado Rockies… And they are literally a different type of mountain. Over twice the size of anything on the east coast. This blew our minds. The beauty, the wildlife, the majesty. We were convinced everyone was right, “The American West is amazing.”
Colorado was amazing, but it wasn’t until our next trip that we were convinced that we needed to leave the flat muggy mosquito filled limestone lands of Florida, let alone the touristy town of Orlando.
In May of 2016, Josh and I RV’ed from Chicago to Salt Lake City with the main event being a four day stop being in and around Yellowstone National Park (we got a crazy deal from CruiseAmerica.com. They do Factory Delivery Specials where you get a deal for delivering brand new RVs to where they are needed across the country. Another side note being that I won $500 in a photo contest on this trip for another RV trip. I’m super proud and not so humble. Thanks Wally for letting me borrow your Canon 60D).
The award winning photo:
Before departing for Yellowstone, we just knew we would fall in love with it. Josh and I both love wolves (and all wildlife for that matter). Yellowstone is working to rebuild their wolf habitat and this is what first drew us to it. Needless to say, if you haven’t been to Yellowstone, it is one of the most diverse places in the USA (and maybe the world -we don’t get out much). From the mountain views in Lamar Valley, to Old Faithful and 60% of the World’s Geysers in Yellowstone’s Upper Geyser Basin, to the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, to the huge Yellowstone Lake, and to all the valleys and plains where the biggest heard of our Nation’s Mammal, the Bison, live… We are obsessed. To seal the deal, there was a wolf den on the side of a mountain that was in view of the main road. We woke up every day at 4AM to travel an hour across the park to see them.
Ok, I promise this post isn’t about Yellowstone, however we knew we would want to move somewhere within driving distance.
After our trip, we were absolutely miserable to come back home… The only thing for us in Florida were our kids/dogs, Jack and Walter (Raymond came later) and of course our family and friends. We needed to get out, but where?
To be honest, my first thought was Colorado. More people = more jobs = more feasible. Then I actually thought about those things. 1. More people- one of the reasons we hate Florida. It’s overcrowded. Traffic is a nightmare. People are rude. Crime is high. 2. More jobs- we are leaving our jobs in Florida in the hopes of not doing the same thing somewhere else. We want to work for ourselves. At least that is the plan. We shall see… However, Colorado is still beautiful and has a special place in my heart.
So we got to thinking, where else? When my first thought was Colorado, Josh’s was always Montana. I never even gave it a shot because I thought it would be too cold (so silly… that’s what clothes are for). But upon research and following every Montana Instagram page… I was captivated.
Every road is a scenic byway…
So Montana it is. It’s a pretty large state. 4th largest in the US behind Alaska, Texas, and California. So where in Montana shall we call home?
I’ll continue to narrow in our next Blog!