I was born and raised in Las Vegas, NV. After graduating high school, I moved to central California to go to a junior college playing softball and basketball. From there I was exposed to Indiana University and was fortunate enough to get a softball scholarship so I moved across the country to Bloomington, IN.
In college, I met the girl I thought I was going to spend the rest of my life with. Our love was epic. She was the one worthy to come out of the closet to my family and friends. Our relationship was amazing in the beginning years. After college, me and my girlfriend moved back to Vegas with for a bit and I started a career in real estate. Within 7 years, me and my wife (at that point) desired to get out of the fast-paced city life and moved back to my wife’s home town of Monterey, CA where I discovered an untapped love for the ocean.
Unfortunately, my relationship ended after 13 years and a shit show of other tragic things happened to me in the year of 2015 – it really seemed like my life was falling apart.
In the depths of my sorrow and pain on June 1st, of 2016, I chose to go on a trip - A trip I had dreamed about for years, one with no agenda, no plans, no obligations, no responsibilities, just free road and seeking the spirit of adventure, inspiration and discovery daily.
This is what I called my Goddess Road Trip.
The Goddess Road Trip
For my Goddess Road Trip, I had absolutely no plans on where I was going to go. I was going to start in Monterey, CA and end up in Chicago, IL to visit some good friends from college. I figured I would travel for 22 some odd days before being expected in Chicago. I had ideas of where I wanted to go. I had always wanted to see the National Parks of the United States. Growing up in Vegas, I had enough of the bright lights, tourist attractions and man-made marvels. I desired to marvel at nature and find inspiration in the beauty of it and be EXCITED about life again through the adventure of not having any plans or agendas.
I packed some camping stuff, bought a map from REI, loaded my yoga mat, camera, GoPro and headphones so I could meditate every day. The only requirement I had for myself was to meditate and do yoga daily. In mediation, I heard a faint whisper of suggestions of my next destination. In my mind this was Goddess, the Source of all life leading me to my next adventure. That voice never seemed to steer me wrong and led me to the most epic places I’ve ever visited.
I started in the central coast of California, in one of my favorite most inspiring spots - Big Sur and camped for a couple of days in Limekiln Park. I meditated and hiked throughout the mountains of Big Sur that overlook the expansive Pacific Ocean where I watched Orcas migrate up and down the coast.
Next I headed down the coast to Morro Bay where I said my goodbyes to the Pacific Ocean. The ocean had grown apart of my daily routines and seemed to be a source of calming and healing for my soul and I knew wherever my journey was taking me, I wouldn’t see her for a while.
Then I headed to Kings Canyon and the Sequoia National Forest. Before entering into the forest, I asked an older gentleman in a Visitor Center where I should camp. He suggested Hume Lake so I drove there and found it was one of the most pristine, gorgeous lakes I had ever seen so I spent a couple days there hiking, exploring and meditating to figure out my next spot to visit.
From there the whisper suggested that I head up to Glacier National Park in Montana. This is where I felt that if God was going to live somewhere in the US, it would be Montana. The peace and serenity is profound!!! It’s like a totally untouched land, it felt like I traveled back in time before technology consumed and distracted our everyday lives (fyi there is no cell service in this area – you are totally in the woods and wilderness). This was probably my most favorite place I visited on my road trip. I camped for a week on a lake on the Canadian and US boarder called Kintla Lake. This place was the most healing spot I found on my travels. I was totally submerged in nature and peace. I woke up everyday in a state of zen to watch the sunrise over the mountains and lake. I hiked in the nearby meadows and forests and took afternoon naps (I never knew I liked naps before visiting this place). I would watch the afternoon storms roll in and roll out. It was truly magical.
After Montana, I started back down south to see Yellowstone. It seems like this is everyone’s idea of a National Park in the US, so I thought I might as well add it to the list not to mention seeing Old Faithful was one of my bucketlist items. Yellowstone was beautiful and kinda gnarly with all of the sulfur and geysers. My favorite part were the buffalos. They seemed to cause all the traffic jams in Yellowstone. They would just walk right through the highways taking their time, like they gave zero fucks about any disruptions they may cause. I loved it!
Next I drove through Grand Teton to head to Colorado, which was my next destination. I spent over two weeks in Colorado. I started in Dinosaur National Monument (which is an actual camping site and outdoor recreational area, not a Dinosaur Museum fyi) then traveled to Grand Junction to actually go to a Dinosaur Museum. Next I was off to Telluride. It happened to be the week of the Blue Grass Festival so I stayed one day in the Lodge then camped on the side of a cliff a couple of days. One of the days I went Mountain Bike riding which was stellar!
Next I was off to Ouray where I stayed a week in Angel Creek Campground. This was my second favorite spot I stayed on my roadtrip. I hiked almost everyday. One of my favorite hikes was the Blue Lakes. Ridiculous! I’ve never seen water so blue and beautiful. My last stop before leaving Ouray and heading to Chicago was the mineral pools in downtown Ouray. It was an amazing, refreshing experience to relax in this mineral pool and be surrounded by the canyons of the Colorado Mountains.
After 22 days of traveling, camping, hiking and processing through the tragedies and changes of my life, I continued my trip to Chicago to meet college friends. Overall I drove through 14 States, visited 5 National Parks and only got one speeding ticket lol. Once I emerged from my Goddess Road Trip, I felt like a new person. Someone with deep confidence, trust in my intuition, a strength that I never knew I had, and a belief in love and miracles that keeps expanding. This trip truly changed my life forever and I’m so grateful every day for the time I took out of my life to go on it.
My favorite part of the trip was Montana. No tour guides, I just drove to Kintla Lake and camped. It was amazing and life changing. Next favorite was Ouray/Telluride area. The Lodge in Telluride is one of the best in Colorado and really beats any of the resorts near Denver (like Vail, Breckenridge and Keystone). The Blue Lakes Hike is a must in Colorado. It’s a little tough. At 10,000 plus feet it’s a little difficult to breath but well worth it.
I felt safe overall. No issues with any LGBTQ discrimination or challenges.
The only times I didn’t feel safe was when there were bears near. I saw my first grizzly bear in Montana. Pretty terrifying how big they are and even more terrifying how fast they can move. I saw the grizzly early in the morning from my car, it was about 100 yards away and that was close enough for me. Also, two bears raided the campground in Angel Creek Campground in Ouray, CO.
I would just suggest that travelers be cautious of that and know how to store food to keep away from bears and what to do if you run into a bear (FYI they sell bear spray).
Anything you would like other LGBTQ+ travelers to know...
Throughout my life I have accomplished a lot of things, I received a full ride to Indiana University, graduated from one of the best schools in their area of expertise from college with degrees in business and management, I have been voted one of the Top 40 Realtors Under 40 Years Old in Las Vegas NV, I’ve been a top real estate agent and apart of award winning real estate teams for over a decade, I have a designation which is similar to a “PhD of Real Estate” - NONE of the things I have experienced professionally comes close to holding a candle to the experiences I had on my Goddess Road Trip. I may not be able to add this adventure to my resume but my Goddess Road Trip not only brought the essence of life and excitement back into my life, it also inspired me to move to Colorado Springs for 6 months where I continued my adventures of hiking, traveling and snowboarding throughout the Rocky Mountains. Then I was inspired to move to Kauai, HI where I am now which my days consist of swimming in the ocean, hanging out with sea turtles, hiking, biking and surfing.
This trip was truly a trip of a lifetime and it seems to just be getting better and better the more I follow adventures, love, and inspiration!
This was the most magical experience snorkeling with sea turtles (aka Honu in the Hawaiian culture). They were so peaceful and didn't even mind me near them. Simply Magical!!! Aloha+Mahalo (Love+Thank You)! #GoddessRoadtrip #BeTheAdventureYouSeek
Follow Along With Kristine's Journey: @betheadventureyouseek
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