Category: Back Roads

B.P.O.E.Rocky Mountain National Park, CO

Rocky Mountain National Park sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Probably the most spectacular thing about Rocky Mountain National Park is the alpine tundra landscape above the treeline. The Tailor and I found a well-marked hiking trail up there and struck out, hoping to catch a glimpse of a pika or two among the glacier-strewn rocks. What we got instead was a little more than… More

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Fish talesKenora, ON, Canada

Husky the Muskie sketch by Chandler O'Leary

When I lived in Minnesota, people used to tell me hair-raising stories of going fishing “Up Nort’” for muskellunge, and catching specimens that measured in feet, rather than inches. It’s no surprise the muskie is the stuff of legends—but imagine my delight when, without even stepping foot in a boat, the Tailor and I “caught”… More

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Sailor’s warningHeceta Head, OR

Heceta Head Lighthouse sketch by Chandler O'Leary

I have never yet managed to visit Heceta Head in anything other than a raging gale. (Thank goodness for the car overlook where I could park and sketch in comfort while the Pacific threw bathtubs of icy spray at my windows…) But then again—what better way to see firsthand exactly what lighthouses are for?

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Sailor’s delightLudington, MI

Lake Michigan lighthouse sketch by Chandler O'Leary

As a lifelong landlubber, I don’t often get to see lighthouses from the side they’re designed to face. So as you can probably imagine, not only was I gleefully waving back at the folks on the breakwater—I was also practically hanging off the side of the boat to get a better look at the beacon.

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Duck diningIpswich, MA

Ipswich Clambox sketch by Chandler O'Leary

A “duck” is kind of the architectural version of “you are what you eat”—at least in this case. Hey, if you’re looking for good roadside food, it’s hard to go wrong with a place that gets a blue ribbon in the atmosphere department.

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Seeing the Elephant*West of Cut Bank, MT

Montana sketch by Chandler O'Leary

I have a particular love (and lots and lots of sketches) of treeless landscapes and endless plains. But I have to admit—after driving cross-country over more than 2,000 miles of the flat interior of the continent, seeing mountains again, at last, feels like a kind of reward. * “Seeing the Elephant” was a popular (and… More

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