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Friday Five – Five Difficult to Reach US National Parks I’m Dying to Visit

Friday Five – Five Difficult to Reach US National Parks I’m Dying to Visit

Isle Royale NP

I love US National Parks.  Whether I go to see them by myself (like Katmai) or we all go as a family (like Great Smoky Mountains), I just love to see the natural beauty of our fine country.  I really would like to go to all the national parks.  However, some of them are just difficult to get to.  Here are the five of the most difficult National Parks  to reach that I’m dying to visit.

#5 – Isle Royale, Michigan

While I’ve been pretty close to Isle Royale NP while on the banks of Lake Superior, I have not been to the island.  I definitely regret not making this trip before I moved away from Minnesota.  I think we might need a family adventure here in a couple of summers, before bounding off to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness for some camping and canoeing fun.

Only reachable by plane or boat, Isle Royale is in northwest corner of Lake Superior.  Once you are on the island, you have to travel by foot.  All wheeled vehicles are prohibited!  The island has a rich ecosystem that the NPS would like to preserve.  (Photo by David Cornwell)

Dry Tortugas NP

#4 – Dry Tortugas, Florida

No roads to this National Park either.  Dry Tortugas is accessible only by boat or sea plane.

The large draw is the snorkeling, which I’d love to do.  The water is crystal clear and contains lots of sea life.  But there is also a 19th century fort on the island.  Fort Jefferson was a massive fort built by the US in the mid 1800’s.  Well, partially built.  By the time they reached completion, advances in weaponry had rendered the poor fort obsolete.  Tell me that doesn’t sound like a fantastic thing to explore? (Photo by vladeb)

American Samoa NP

#3 – American Samoa

Located in a remote part of the south Pacific, it is best reached by taking a plane out of Honolulu for most Americans.  Its shear distance from the American mainland makes this a hard to reach National Park.  There are only a couple of flights each week, so that makes it even more difficult.

American Samoa contains three volcanoes, which I would LOVE to visit.  It also has tropical rainforests and beautiful beaches.  The culture of the Samoan people are also highlighted in this rarely visited park. (Photo by ajdemma)

#2 – Lake Clark, Alaska

Lake Clark National Park, Alaska

Another roadless park in Alaska, this one might be the easiest of these parks for me to reach.  It is relatively close to Anchorage, but it requires a seaplane or boat to access.

It offers glistening lakes, volcanoes, the always beautiful Alaskan mountain scenery, and of course wildlife.  I’m thinking that a week of camping and kayaking would be in order. (Photo by catalinamarr)

#1 – Kobuk Valley, Alaska

Kobuk Valley National Park, Alaska

Ok, this National Park is ridiculously hard to get to.  But it may be the coolest place I’ve ever heard of.  It is above the Arctic Circle, and there are freaking sand dunes there.  SAND DUNES!  Isn’t that nuts?  Half a million caribou saunter through here on their annual migration, and I think that would be just amazing to see.

There are no roads, no campgrounds, and basically no service of any kind here.  It is not near any city.  You can arrive by plane any time of year, snow mobile in the winter, or boat in the summer.  I can’t imagine anything I’d rather do than float the 350- mile Kobuk River and experience this fantastic national park. (Photos by AlaskaNPS)

Kobuk River, Alaska

  1. Lorenzo 15 February, 2013

    Wow! All these places are amazing.

  2. How to Get to Alaska National Park Sites - Everything Everywhere Family Travel 23 July, 2013

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