Catherine Parker has a passion for travel that’s driven her across North America. She’s visited all 50 U.S. states, seven Canadian provinces, six Mexican states along with several islands in the Caribbean. As a former flight attendant with one of the largest airlines, she’s landed in nearly every North American airport at least once.
Since clipping her professional wings, Catherine has combined her love of the open road with visiting national parks, historic sites and cultural icons. Logging over 55,000 miles behind the wheel, Catherine has explored 43 of the 63 U.S. national parks and 10 Canadian national parks along with national parks in Mexico and the Dominican Republic
From Acadia National Park, Saint Croix Island International Historic Site and the Women’s Rights National Historical Park, Catherine has explored the National Parks of the East. With the promise of a view, Catherine climbed the Statue of Liberty, rode a pod to the top of the Gateway Arch National Park and hopped aboard a helicopter to see Mount Rushmore from above. From Big Bend National Park, Chiricahua National Monument and Petrified Forest National Park, Catherine has hiked through the National Parks of the Southwest.
With Death Valley National Park, Lassen Volcanic National Park and North Cascades National Park, Catherine enjoys the dramatic scenery of the Western National Parks. A cruise to Alaska had her floating through Sitka National Historical Park, Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park and Wrangell-St. Elias National Park. Hawaii’s USS Arizona Memorial and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park were highlights in a trip to her 50th state. And don’t forget the Midwest, Catherine has explored the National Parks of a the Dakotas, like Theodore Roosevelt National Park, the parks in the Black Hills, like Badlands National Park, and Scotts Bluff National Monument.
When people ask which is her favorite, her answer is Yellowstone. From the geysers to the rich wildlife and the iconic Old Faithful Inn, it was love at first sight back in 2000. Though Grand Teton National Park and Glacier National Park are favorites as well.
Some of her favorite stays are nights in National Park lodges. So she makes a point to stay and enjoy the quieter side of the parks. To date, she’s stayed at Old Faithful Inn and three other Yellowstone lodges, lodges in Olympic National Park, Crater Lake National Park, Oregon Caves National Monument, Glacier National Park, Badlands National Park, two properties in Death Valley National Park, Redwood National and State Parks, Kings Canyon National Park and both rims of the Grand Canyon. She camped in teepees, yurts and cabins across the U.S. too.
As an award-winning journalist, Catherine is a contributor to U.S. News and World Report and Lonely Planet, among others.
In addition to an active roster of publications, she publishes a family travel website, CarfulOfKids.com. In her free time, she restores old houses, tends her cottage garden, and corrals a menagerie of animals. She raised three adult-sized kids who love to travel as well.