Author: Tom Adkinson

WHITETOP MOUNTAIN, Virginia – If the weather is the least bit accommodating, bicyclists enjoy the Virginia Creeper National Recreation Trail in Southwest Virginia year-round. The 34.3-mile-long route, one of America’s most famous rails-to-trails projects, follows the route of a mountain …

Winter on the Virginia Creeper Trail Read More »

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By Tom Adkinson ALAMAGORDO, New Mexico – America got a very big present in the final days of 2019 — its 62nd national park. It is White Sands National Park between Alamogordo and Las Cruces, New Mexico, upgraded from national …

White Sands bumped to national park status Read More »

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NASHVILLE, Tennessee — One of Nashville’s more peculiar pieces of public sculpture is an ornament for passing bicyclists in Shelby Park, just across the Cumberland River from downtown. Shelby Park, with its bike trails, walking paths, lake and other amenities, …

Birdwatching in Nashville Read More »

ASHLAND, Oregon — Always keep a few dollars of folding money with you. Otherwise, you’ll not be able to reward a sidewalk busker who manages to pluck a banjo and make a didgeridoo moan simultaneously. This talented busker was in …

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CHICAGO — The Bean, whose formal name is Cloud Gate, is one of the most joy-producing attractions in Chicago. It is a massive work of art (33 feet wide, 66 feet tall and 42 feet high) built with 168 stainless …

Joyous Jumpers in Chicago Read More »

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CRATER LAKE NATIONAL PARK, Oregon — The serenity of a crisp autumn day, belies the origins of this stunningly beautiful lake fed only by rainfall and snowmelt high in the Cascade Mountains. National Park Service literature says the volcanic eruption …

Looking Down on Crater Lake Read More »

NEW YORK – Look for a good angle. That is sage advice from experienced travel photographers, even if it means lying on your back in the middle of a major city, as this tourist in lower Manhattan is demonstrating as …

A Matter of Perspective Read More »

BARBADOS, West Indies – A dramatic Caribbean sky seems to recall when Charles Fort helped protect this British outpost in the era of exploration and colonization. Charles Fort, built in 1650, actually predates the creation of the Kingdom of Great …

Dramatic Sky Over Barbados Read More »

NASHVILLE, Tennessee — It is the year of the pig on the Chinese calendar, and that is cause for celebration by pork lovers everywhere, but especially by pork lovers who know the proper way to put a pig to its …

Celebrating Chinese New Year 2019, American Style Read More »

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By Tom Adkinson CLEAR LAKE, Iowa – It’s understandable if you have a curious urge early every February to scout up recordings of Buddy Holly’s “Peggy Sue,” Ritchie Valens’ “Donna” and the Big Bopper’s “Chantilly Lace.” Feb. 3 is the …

‘The Day the Music Died’ Read More »

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