Giant tufas formed by mineral deposits rise from springs in Mono Lake. These amazing towers were hidden under the surface of the saline lake until the California Water Wars, when Mulholland re-directed the inlet streams to feed Los Angeles.
37 Chev at Bodie. California.
An estimated 10,000 people lived in this gold mining town in the 1880s. Miners were kept occupied with saloon bars and brothels, but had to watch their backs - the murder rate here exceeded 400 people a year.
Benton Range. California.
As one of the first towns in California, Benton has serviced the needs of miners and travellers for a long time. Accommodation included hot tubs fed from the local hot springs. Adopting many of Nevada’s laws, Benton also allowed gambling.
Alabama Hills, Lone Pine. California.
Movie Road runs through the middle of the Alabama Hills. The location for hundreds of Westerns and other films (including Iron Man), Lone Pine is the gateway to Mt. Whitney, the highest mountain in the contiguous United States.
Mammoth Lakes. California.
A beautiful location for the outdoor minded. A short drive off US 395, Mammoth Lakes has fishing, mountain biking, hiking and snow skiing. A fabulous resort town with roads and trails lead into the Sierras and the Devil Post Pile.
Lone Pine Lake
Whitney Portal. California.
This is an extraordinarily great hike, from the road end directly up the valley to this stunning little lake high in the Sierras. The trail continues to the summit of Mt Whitney, the highest peak in the contiguous United States.
The Mist Trail follows the Mercer River past Vernal and Nevada Falls, on its way to the Little Yosemite Valley and the summit of Half Dome. Yosemite is simply stunning, with its towering granite walls and breathtaking scenery.
Painted Hand is nestled in the Cutthroat Group of Hovenweep National Monument. It is also a perfect location for the night. The ruins run the length of this shallow canyon and include some of the finest masonry construction seen in America’s ancient sites.
Death Valley. California.
This is the lowest point in North America, 190 ft (58 m) below sea level, and a place of extreme heat. Nearby is Furnace Creek, with limited shelter from the heat under its trees, and Zabriskie Point’s multicoloured rocks baking under the intense heat of the sun.
Colorado Plateau. Utah, Route 163.
Part of the Navajo Nation and a defining feature of the West. This is the site of many John Wayne movies and the location of his cabin at Gouldings. This iconic viewpoint is where Forrest Gump stopped his run across America.
Arche National Park. Utah.
Sandstone Arch is hidden secretly between giant sandstone fins of rock. The sand is incredibly fine and soft to walk on as you approach this brilliantly lit arch under a noonday sun. Sunlight radiates from the rock on all angles.
Double ‘O’ Arch
Arches National Park. Utah.
If you follow the primitive trail through the northern end of the park you will pass many arches and rock fins of slick rock. The trail is a little technical and takes you through arches and along the tops of the rock fins.
Dazzling red rock encompasses the whole area. Land and building are skilfully merged together. Home of art, craft and spiritual minded people. There are fantastic hiking trails and stunning sunsets and festival of colours.
Navajo Loop trail. Utah.
Bryce Canyon National Park has many outstanding viewpoints along its access road, but the Navajo Loop Trail is an experience you’ll never forget. A walk among the Hoodoos is definitely something everyone should do.
The northern extreme of the Uncompahgre is the Colorado National Monument. An incredible Rim Road Drive introduces you to the Uncompahgre Uplift and the mountain ranges stretching to Telluride.
33 miles south of Hanksville. Utah.
The Bicentennial Highway crosses some hot and barren land, but it’s not without beauty. Cheesebox Canyon begs to be explored. The rocks become hotter and dryer - then out of the blue, a small seep feeds Hog Canyon with lush green.
Camping at Triangle X. Wyoming.
The Grand Tetons are a rugged highlight of the Rockies, and famous for their moose, bison and antelope. The resort town of Jackson is a short distance to the south, and Yellowstone an equally short distance to the north.
Yellowstone River. Wyoming.
The river carves its way from Yellowstone Lake down waterfalls into the Grand Canyon. It then passes Mt. Washburn and exits the park near Mammoth Springs. Huge numbers of deer and bison roam the park.
Cascades National Park. Washington.
Cutthroat Lake rests on one side of the park and a string of hydropower stations dot the other. Majestic mountains surround you on all sides. In their glory days, Newhalem gardens were illuminated by this local power.
Portland sits beside the Columbia River, where dozens of spectacular waterfalls cascade into the river. On the hills behind the city is Washington Park with its famous rose gardens, Japanese gardens and Pittock Mansion overlooking the city.
Mount Saint Helens
Spirit Lake Highway. Washington.
This volcano is immense. It used to stand 400m higher but in 1980 a massive landslide eruption left it with a 1300ft (1.6km) deep crater! Since then the volcano has been actively rebuilding, gaining about 900ft (275m) on one of the domes.
Glaciers National Park. Montana.
Even though the glaciers are in rapid decline, the park is a stunning place to visit. Home to a variety of mountain wildlife, including several hundred grizzly bears. Many hiking trails and the Going-to-the-Sun Road allow an adventurous pass across the mountains.
Adirondacks. New York.
The Adirondacks are a jewel in the heart of New York. Lake Champlain borders one side, and 46 peaks stand over 4000ft (1220m) in the preserve. It is home to hundreds of lakes, lined with summer camps brimming with activity.
The Chattahoochee abounds with fish as it runs through Helen, the quiet little beer-fest styled town. Tubing is possible the biggest industry on the river. The forested hills are at the southern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway.
1875 Ammonoosuc. New Hampshire.
Mt. Washington is the home of the world’s first cog railway (the second steepest grade in the world), transporting five million people up the highest peak in New Hampshire (6288ft/1917m) since 1868.
Presidential Range. New Hampshire.
This route passes through some terrific scenery, following the Saco River from Conway to the Presidential Range. The Appalachian Trail intersects with the train at Saco Lake where hikers begin their climb up Mt. Washington.
Statue of Liberty. New York.
I commuted into the city via the Staten Island Ferry which passes close by the statue, an iconic landmark greeting immigrants on their way to Castle Garden and Ellis Island to make America their home.
Dodge City. Kansas.
One of the greatest cowboy cities of the Western frontier. Home to the Santa Fe train, Wyatt Earp and 'Doc' Holiday, and immortalised in the phrase "Get the hell out of Dodge".
Stanislaus Forest. California.
Sonora Pass is a beautiful drive across the Sierras. With camping sites galore, remarkable scenery and huge contrasts, from the dry eastern basins to the lush green west, as well as changes in elevation.
Mount Rainier. Washington.
The name says it all. Though the road to Paradise may be narrow, winding and high on the south side of Mt. Rainier, Paradise is a simply stunning destination. Breathtaking vistas, with rivers and stream gushing down the mountain.