24 Hours in Cologne: Does It Stink?

✍️ 🕑 • Series: Western Europe 2018 • Tags: germanykölnchilean foodsacred placeschurches • Places: Köln

If you remember what was going on last time (which seeing as it's been a little more than a year since my post in this series on 2018 West European travel you probably don't), I had just arrived at a sudden and startling realization.

I had forgotten that Saturday was a day, and had no plans and no reservations. Everything that could be booked for one night in the country of Belgium (on a sunny weekend in the middle of August) was booked.

And that's why I ended up spending the day in Köln, a place between other places I was visiting anyway.

One of the prettier angles of Köln's city center
One of the prettier angles of Köln's city center

A Lazy Day of Mountain Hiking at Sheep Mountain, WY

✍️ 🕑 • Series: Go West, Young Lad • Tags: mountainsbird photographydams • Places: Wapiti Campground Sheep Mountain, Snoshone National Forest Buffalo Bill Dam & Visitor Center Fat Racks BBQ, Cody, WY

Hello, friends!

Welcome back to another exciting episode of Go West, Young Lad in which our intrepid narrator, "Steve" makes their way from Pennsylvania to Seattle, alone in a station wagon.

A pickup truck makes its way into the Cody Mountain Tunnel on US Highway 14/16/20
A pickup truck makes its way into the Cody Mountain Tunnel on US Highway 14/16/20

Last time, "Steve" did probably a solid 500 miles of driving in a single day. This time "Steve" decides it's time for some R&R.

Except, for this "Steve" character, R&R actually means... climbing up a mountain.

Mom, you are welcome to skip reading this one.

Anyone else, read on.

Bear's Lodge & Bighorns: a Long Day (& a Long Drive) in Northeast Wyoming

✍️ 🕑 • Series: Go West, Young Lad • Tags: sacred sitesnational forestsnational monuments • Places: Devils Tower Frida's House Mexican Food Medicine Wheel Lovell, WY Greybull, WY

Waking up in the Black Hills, I could already feel the throngs of tourists encroaching.

I opted to skip stopping at Mt. Rushmore, and bought a coffee and bagel in the highly patriotic town of Keystone. Neither were stellar, but they were both adequate insofar as things inside my belly go.

Onward, I drove for two-ish hours into Wyoming, and onto my first destination, a certain famous butte.

The sun shining behind the tower
The sun shining behind the tower

Little Si

✍️ 🕑 • Series: Steve in Seattle • Tags: black and white photography • Places: Little Si

Little Si was my choice for a first post-COVID hike.

Doing a bunch of hiking, then lazing around ill, and then trying not to push myself too meant that this was the first post-COVID mountain I'd climb, and I'd say it was a good choice.

The trail provides a very pleasant, early viewpoint.
The trail provides a very pleasant, early viewpoint.

It was fairly short, fairly moderate (though it has some steep and rocky sections), and.. only fairly crowded on this particular drizzly Saturday in February. I had thought about going elsewhere, but I had hoped the weather conditions would help ensure that the hike would be less crowded.