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Recharging In Yellowstone & Grand Teton National Parks

While my personal and professional life is focused on Arlington, VA, I also love to travel. This summer I was able to visit my former real estate mentor and partner Tracy Walczak at her beautiful home in the Bitterroot Valley of Montana.

It was a great opportunity to catch up and recharge.

Tracy is now a Realtor® in Montana and lives with her husband Paul in Darby, MT. And the view from the deck of their home is amazing (see photo in gallery above). And, just a little different from when they lived in the Yorktown neighborhood of Arlington!

And, since I was in Montana, it was also a great chance to visit Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks.

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is simply amazing. More than 3,500 square miles full of wildlife (grizzly bears, buffalo, elk, wolves and much more) and wild sights (geysers, boiling mud pots, vibrant colored hot springs and much more).

The Grand Prismatic Spring’s rainbow of colors (see photo in gallery above) are so vibrant they seem like they can’t be real. It was a favorite of both my husband Jon and I. Smithsonian Magazine has a great article on the science behind the Grand Prismatic.

We also were lucky to see Steamboat Geyser, the world’s tallest geyser at about 300 feet, erupt while we were in the park. It’s been very active this year, erupting about a dozen times. But there have been periods where there were 50-year gaps between eruptions.

And Yellowstone offers so much more: Old Faithful, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone with the spectacular 308-foot tall Lower Falls (see photo in gallery above), Yellowstone Lake, Mammoth Hot Springs and so much more.

Grand Teton National Park

Not far (in Western distances) from Yellowstone is another fabulous national park, Grand Teton.

Grand Teton National Park is a hiker’s paradise. We were able to take many hikes and each offered spectacular views. Whether it was at Hidden Falls above Jenny Lake, up into Cascade Canyon or the Cirque Trail that starts at 10,450 feet at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, there was always amazing views.

We also stopped at the Mormon Row Historic District (see photo in gallery above), an early homestead settlement from the early 1900’s.

Getting away from home always give me new perspectives and a broader view. Where’s your favorite place to get away?

All photos (C) Jon Ross 2018
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4 Fun Off Leash Dog Parks In Arlington, VA

Want to take your pooch for some frolicking run-around amusement with other dogs? Here are 4 fun off leash dog parks in Arlington, VA, where you’ll find amenities such as water fountains, play areas, and nearby dog friendly restaurants and bars.

Benjamin Banneker Dog Park

Benjamin Banneker Dog Exercise Area, 1680 N. Sycamore St., Arlington, is .06-acre fenced exercise area with a year-round water supply. The area includes a small-dog enclosure with a separate entrance.

The exercise area is part of the well-shaded 11-acre Benjamin Banneker Park that includes a playground, picnic tables and grills, a stream and nearby access to Four Mile Run, W&OD and Custis Trails.

Arlington County is currently in the process of renovating the park, which is near the neighborhoods of Falls Church, Madison Manor and Westover. You can see the planned dog park improvements – including adding synthetic turf and new seating at the county’s Benjamin Banneker Park project page.

Fort Ethan Allen Dog Park (Madison Dog Park)

Fort Ethan Allen Dog Park, 3829 N. Stafford St., Arlington, is part of the 15-acre Fort Ethan Allen Park. This dog park is also known as Madison Dog Park to the regulars from the Arlingwood, Chain Bridge Forest and Rivercrest neighborhoods. The fenced-in dog park features mulch ground cover, drinking water and benches.

The park includes Madison Community Center and is surrounded by the earthwork berms of the Civil War-era fort.

James Hunter Dog Park

James Hunter Dog Park, 1230 N. Hartford St., Arlington, is a roughly half-acre fenced dog park that features a deep fine gravel play area with a waterfall, small splash pond and drinking water spigots for our four-legged friends and separate shaded sitting areas and gardens for all.

James Hunter Park is close to the Lyon Village and Clarendon neighborhoods and is open from sunrise to 9 p.m. Being two blocks from the Clarendon Metro station means you have easy access to the many restaurants with outdoor pet friendly sidewalk seating areas along Wilson Boulevard including Liberty Tavern and Northside Social.

And, on Sunday, June 10, enjoy live music and free food from Smoking Kow BBQ from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Bark In The Park.

Shirlington Dog Park

Shirlington Dog Park, 2710 S. Oakland St, Arlington, is a 2.4-acre gated park along Four Mile Run that is recognized as one of the top dog parks in the Washington, DC, area.

This large dog park in Arlington, VA, has a separate area for small dogs, drinking water and tables for dog owners. Situated along Four Mile Run, it’s easy for dogs to get down to the creek and frolic in the water.

There are plenty of dog-centric stores right near the park including Wag More Dogs and The Muddy Mutt. And for dog owners, New District Brewing offers nearly a dozen beers on tap. You are also close to the Village of Shirlington and the many pet-friendly restaurant patios including Copperwood Tavern, Guapo’s, and Palette 22 (Yappy Hour Tuesdays from 4 to 7 p.m.!), plus Dogma Bakery offers treats for your pet.

You can stay-to-date on Shirlington Dog Park through Shirlington Dogs monthly newsletter.

Please note that the best entrances to use for the dog park are off S. Four Mile Run, either at the end of S. Oxford Street (near Wag More Dogs) or at the end of S. Nelson (near the baseball field).