Page 68 - Discover America
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For all its stunning city skylines, hundreds of miles of golden beaches and fun-filled theme parks and attractions, there is nothing which epitomises the great American outdoors more than its National Parks, each presenting a unique landscape of incredibly diverse natural beauty, ideal for hiking, biking, riding, rafting and camping. No trip to the western states of the US would be complete without visiting at least one of these magnificent areas and with so many options, this is our guide to those that should be high on your agenda.
Rocky Mountain, Colorado
Just 11⁄2 hours’ drive north of Denver, Rocky Mountain National Park’s claim to fame is its 72 named peaks which stand higher than 12,000 feet tall, the park justifiably tagged the ‘roof of the world.’ The gorgeous alpine scenery is the habitat for wildlife such as moose, bighorn sheep, and elk, any of which you may see as you travel through the park, and although you are far less likely to spot black bear, mountain lions, or bobcats, they also have their home in the magnificent Rocky Mountains.
Yellowstone, Wyoming
The world’s first national park, Yellowstone flaunts more than 10,000 thermal features, these including mud pots, hot springs, fumaroles and, of course, geysers. Iconic Old Faithful is the most famous landmark, a cone geyser that doesn’t live up to its ‘faithful’ billing; spouting every 35 to 120 minutes. The magnificent V-shaped Canyon of the Yellowstone; the grandiose peaks of the Rockies; Yellowstone Lake, and vast forests, including one of the world’s largest petrified forests, add up to Yellowstone’s singular majesty, all inhabited by the largest concentration of mammals in the continental USA.

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