Balabanova All Over

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[Rocky Mountain National Park, Jul 29, 2022] The crappy weather the day before turned our hiking plans around quite a bit. We did not intend to hike a strenuous 10.5-mile hike the day before our half marathon, but we didn’t have much of a choice. The hike to Sky Pond is one of the most popular ones in the park. Sky Pond is the ultimate destination but there are three more lakes… Read More

Big Bend National Park is in southwest Texas and includes the entire Chisos mountain range and a large swath of the Chihuahuan Desert. Due to the remote nature of Big Bend, two of the days are travel days and two of the days are fully spent in the park. Fear not, the two travel days allow you to explore plenty of things along the way! Should you have more time, consider adding… Read More

[Boise, ID, Sep 3, 2021] Despite Boise’s small size, there is plenty to do to fill a full day. Breakfast at Bacon We started our day with breakfast at Bacon (they’re only open for breakfast and lunch). As you’d expect, bacon features heavily on the menu. We couldn’t resist the bacon tasting, which came in these five tall shot glasses! I opted for the shrimp and grits, with a side of bacon…. Read More

[Brussels, Belgium, Dec 19, 2019] Visiting the European Parliament and the area around Grand Place took up most of my morning. I decided to spend the second half of the day in the upper part of town following a 90-minute walk described in my guidebook. It started at Royal Place, a square just a 15-minute walk uphill from the Maneken Pis statue, where I had ended my lower town sightseeing. I had… Read More

[Brussels, Belgium, Dec 19, 2019] Armed with Rick Steves’ Belgium guidebook, I left my hotel shortly after 8 am. It was still dark – sunrise wasn’t until 8:43 am. I stopped for a coffee at the cafe right next to my hotel and headed for the European Parliament on the east side of the city, about 25 minutes away from the city center by bus. The European Union as you know it… Read More