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Washington State Master Thread I found a Seattle thread, but none for the rest of the state.  Any not-to-be-missed spots anyone can recommend?  Other tips?  Or a guidebook on par with the Revealed books for Hawaii? 
February 09, 2017, 09:43:47 PM
Re: Arizona Master Thread Here's a recommendation for those vacationing in the Arizona area (especially in the Page area in the summer):  pick a time and set an old style clock to it.  Sometimes the vehicle's clock is fine, but I'm not sure about newer model cars.  Between AZ not doing DST, NV in another time zone, and the Navajo nation on its own time (Antelope Canyon), we had a hard time knowing how much time elapsed between various things.  This can be important for medical and halachic reasons (we dealt with both).
March 06, 2017, 04:58:17 PM
Re: Maui Master Thread
Check the wiki for hotel recommendations. Also Haleakala doesn't require a hike, just fyi.
Depending on which parking area you're directed toward, it may.   [Remember to reserve your date(s).]

March 10, 2017, 07:03:26 AM
Re: Forum Games: Missing Link Gypsies
May 09, 2017, 08:25:22 PM
Re: Maui Master Thread
did anyone booked activities for Maui and Kauai through Groupon?
Whats is the best/cheap and nice activities u guys offer in Maui and Kauai ? I found snorkeling and zipline on groupon.
I'm going to be in Kauai (grand hyatt)Sun-Tue and Maui (Tue-Saturday night) Wailea Marriott. What are must to do things in these places? I'll appreciate all tips and tricks and best fun/romantic activities.   

Skip the helicopter tour on Maui, do it on Kauai instead, doors off if possible.

Regarding snorkeling, best place is Molokini.  Four Winds and Pride of Maui both offer Snuba, which I recommend if you're not SCUBA certified.  Four Winds stays at Molokini, while PoM spends some time there and some at Turtle Town, which is, as its name implies, a good spot to snorkel with turtles.

SUP or surfing lessons.

Regarding sunrise on Haleakala, make sure to make reservations if you plan on going.

Definitely do the RTH, it's nice, albeit overrated.

May 24, 2017, 02:45:31 PM
Re: Maui Master Thread
So do a beginner's scuba.
Snuba just seems gimmicky to me. How much cheaper is it?
I've done Snuba three times, I think (including Molokini).  Definitely was a good alternative for me, as I wasn't ready for even an intro dive.  SCUBA also required more commitment than I was willing to make, at least in my mind.

Will probably end up staying in the Marriot. Hmm, now not sure if I should do the Molokini trip....
Sounds like Dan had bad weather for his Molokini trip, but I don't think that is the norm.  From what I've heard, most people find Molokini breathtaking.  My kids found the water too cold (it was winter, don't know how it compares to summer), but the adults were blown away.  I wouldn't call it a tourist trap; to quote Maui Revealed, "Best to go in with a blank slate, and you'll probably leave full of wonder."

I still vote that Molokini should not be missed, but if you decide to forego a snorkel boat, for South Maui, Maui Revealed rates, "The entire point separating Po'olenalena Beach from Palauea Beach" as great, and for West Maui, "When it's calm, the right side of Slaughterhouse Beach is excellent ... Black Rock at Ka'anapali Beach can be superb."  These are the spots he seems to like the best.

CMIIW, but I think that the only place on Maui that Snuba can be done is at Molokini.

May 24, 2017, 05:49:01 PM
Re: Forum Games: Missing Link

May 29, 2017, 01:31:09 PM
Re: Iceland Master Thread Neither Skogafoss nor Seljalandsfoss are worth a trip out thataway, IMO, but I'd go anyway because of the drive.  Google maps says Skogafoss is just 26 minutes further, and you can see Eyjafjallajokull along the way.  There's a small visitors center on E15.  Just driving along the ring road gives you a feel for Iceland, that I enjoyed very much.  Looming glaciers, meltwater rivers, Icelandic ponies, a sod house or two.  I would definitely do this over Thingvellir, especially if you're not going snorkeling there.

I enjoyed the Geysir area, and wouldn't blow it off if you've got time.  You can get quite close and see the plumbing of Strokkur.  Not like in the US, where they keep you a "safe distance" away.  Gulfoss IS skippable.  Haven't been to Hveragerthi or Kerith.

The one thing I regret not doing, is checking out Viking World, or even the national museum (in Reykjavik?).  Iceland=Vikings to me, and most other stuff you can do/see elsewhere.

September 18, 2017, 06:37:05 AM
Re: Maui Master Thread
How about the full face ones?
I have one of those, because I have a very hard time breathing just through my mouth.  I had borrowed the larger size before I bought my own and it leaked quite a bit, so I bought the smaller one, and it still leaks a little.  Even so, it was nice to be able to do some snorkeling.  There are, apparently, safety concerns due to recirculated air.

December 09, 2017, 06:04:27 PM
Re: Grammar and Spelling Lessons 101 DEFINITELY / DEFIANTLY

Definitely: in a definite way: in a way free of all ambiguity, uncertainty, or obscurity.  Example: I will definitely be there.

Defiantly: in a defiant manner: in a way that is full of or shows a disposition to challenge, resist, or fight.  Example: She spoke out defiantly against the proposed law.


January 18, 2018, 10:32:02 PM
Re: Alaska Master Thread
2 is difficult anywhere   ;D ;D ;D ;D

We have done quite a few hikes with him, we did a 9-mile hike when he was 9 months, but he was mostly in a stroller. Last year we did northern California, we had him in a baby carrier, I think the longest hike we did was 3 miles though. This year he will be heavier and I am not sure if our baby bajorn which is a front carrier is the best. He can walk, but not more than a mile at a time...

No having been to Alaska, I just don't know about all the activities for him, will he be able to handle those rocky 8-hour cruise boats? A flight? Matanuska Glacier?

I would love to hear from someone who did Alaska with a baby... And from someone who has done hiking with a two-year-old what carrier they used. I tried on one of those back carriers where they sit, but it was really uncomfortable... Could be the brand
1) Check out for ideas on general things to do.

2) There are two main coupon books.  You can see what's included on their websites. (half price now) and

3) Call the places you want to do things with and find out their policies regarding 2 year olds.

4) Take a good stroller, with large wheels

5) Backpack carriers are good for 2 year olds.  We used a Kelty.  Just make sure it is adjusted well.  It shouldn't hang at all.

6) Shorter cruises are available, but if you want to do a longer one, do it early in your trip, when kiddo is going to be jetlagged and more likely to sleep through the boring parts.

July 13, 2018, 12:53:54 PM
Re: Next Vacation - Ideas
Couples first trip without kids in 10+ years.

Thoughts on this (Too much?):
I'm stressed just looking at that.  Can they just choose one island?  There is definitely enough adventure for a week on either Maui or Kauai.  If they want to see two islands, maybe Maui with day trip to Lanai or Kauai with day trip to Ni'ihau.

December 27, 2018, 09:44:32 AM
Re: Big Island Of Hawaii Master Thread Another option to see stars, but without a telescope:  drive up to the MLO, park in the lot right before the gate.  This is where people park their cars if doing the day hike to the summit.  It's at about 11,000 feet.  Make sure to acclimate at the telephone wires for half an hour.  The road up is more fun (winding, hilly, one lane) than Mauna Kea, and takes longer, but there probably will be no one around, and you'll likely be able to see lots of stars (there may be some lights left on at night; call to ask if that's a concern).  You might even be able to see Haleakala, but there are some wires that will detract from the view.  There is no visitor center, but there is an outhouse nearby.  No, this is not a touristy thing to do, but with the public stargazing suspended at the MK VIS, it's something to do.  If you are interested in actually going to the MLO, contact them in advance, and they will show you around, but most people are not interested in NOAA's climate monitoring.  (
February 14, 2019, 02:12:30 PM
Re: Ad Campaign for spreading awareness anti credit card swiping businesses! I like.
February 28, 2019, 06:40:43 PM
Re: Ad Campaign for spreading awareness anti credit card swiping businesses!
It does say on the top in small letterings: 'Urgent message from concerned members of our community' Isn't that enough??
I think it's enough.  To me, including a link says "hidden agenda."

March 03, 2019, 09:59:40 AM
Re: Hawaii housing for 5 near Honolulu? Don't listen to the naysayers if you've already made plans.  Waikiki is extremely touristy, less relaxing than the other islands, but there is loads to do.  You will not be bored. 
March 06, 2019, 08:56:12 PM
Re: Making Pesach For The First Time I think some of it depends on your minhagim.  Do you use any processed/canned goods? Do you eat milchig? Etc.  Also, the number of people and ages will impact what you need.

You'll likely need disposable plastic containers: 3 oz, 8 oz, 1 lb, 2 lb.  Convenient for *everything*.

More disposables: foil pans of all sizes, foil, plastic wrap, vinyl tablecloth, 5 oz. cups (for sedarim), larger cups, bowls, plates, knives, spoons, forks, Ziploc bags in quart and gallon sizes, plastic baggies, twist ties, paper towels, stove foil, soup bags, counter covers, etc.

Like someone said, every year you can buy some non-disposables to replace the disposables. This is our 20th year making Pesach, and we still add to our kitchen equipment one or two things each year.

At the very minimum, start out with a good chef's knife and cutting board. The knife, almost singlehandedly, makes Pesach food prep less burdensome.  Peeler, paring knife, two fleishig pots, frying pan, utensil to use with frying pan. That's the bare minimum.

March 12, 2019, 09:40:43 AM
Re: Making Pesach For The First Time
I use my food processor to whip the eggs and a hand mixer for the rest of the batter and then combine.  I don't have a Pesach stand mixer.  Although a simple one is not too expenseive.
My daughter makes a chocolate mousse cake that is absolutely divine with just a hand mixer, separated eggs and all.  We don't even own a food processor for year round.  (We *had* one, but gave it away after it sat mostly unused for the better part of a decade.)

General advice:  at the end of Pesach, when you are putting everything away, make a list of THINGS YOU NEED and THINGS YOU DON'T NEED for the following Pesach, and hang it up just inside your Pesach cabinet/bin.  We usually put away some consumables, so those we would include on the DON'T NEED list, but if we ran out of something, or there is something we see we can't live without, it goes on the NEED list.  The next Pesach, we can do our shopping before we are ready to unpack everything.

March 12, 2019, 02:14:54 PM
Re: Maui Master Thread
Even if I have the book?
Yes.  I would get both.

May 03, 2019, 01:14:17 PM
Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
If I spend a week+ in Maui, how much time is suggested to do the things that are not available in Maui or better in Kauai?

Suggestions on which of the small islands to try and drop in on?
They each have enough unique wonders that I'd split my time about even.  From Maui, looks like you can fly to Molokai, or take ferry to Lanai.  Or from Kauai, helicopter to Ni'ihau.  Been to Lanai, not interested in going again. Would love to go to either of the other two.  Might not be worth the time if this is your first trip to Maui/Kauai.

Secluded beach on Maui: Red Sand Beach in Hana.  Definitely stay the night in Hana if possible.

May 19, 2019, 09:12:21 PM
Re: Alaska Master Thread
Did anyone fly to Katmai/brooks fall? I am looking to go in the end of August and am seeing mixed reviews about whether there are bears at the falls at that time of year. Iím looking for first hand experience of someone who was there at that time.
Eh.  One person's experience won't give much info, which is why you're seeing mixed reviews.  Call and speak to a ranger, someone who has seen what it's like that time of year, over many years.  Or try the Katmai webpage, which likely has the info.


May 24, 2019, 10:59:30 AM
Re: Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park

June 13, 2019, 04:46:12 PM
Re: Grammar and Spelling Lessons 101
When quoting something ( not a sentence ), does the first letter need to be capitalized?
Quotes should be copied exactly, capitalization included.  Any changes should be indicated with square brackets.  E.g., "[N]ew capitalization for use at the beginning of a sentence..."

June 20, 2019, 04:09:46 AM
Re: 4 Day Trip Bryce/Zion/Grand Canyon Itinerary Question
You also have to book way in advance to get even the Lower Antelope Canyon, upper is likely all booked for the summer
This is almost certainly not true.  You may not be able to book online, but there are many, many "companies" that do the same tour, some more tech savvy than others.

August 01, 2019, 02:31:23 PM
Re: Big Island Of Hawaii Master Thread

plan is to arrive into maui on sun mid afternoon. so we can either leave to BI on thurs or sunday. I figured since more to do on maui with kids, better to stay till sunday early afternoon then take 1-way flight to BI, and from there fly back home. this gives us 48 hrs on BI to explore.
It sounded like you were going to be on Maui for two days. This makes more sense.  Why not spend that extra day on Oahu, exploring Pearl Harbor?  The BI is my favorite island, but doesn't make sense as part of your itinerary.

August 18, 2019, 11:22:40 PM
Re: Costa Rica Master Thread
2- would love to check out the easter part of the country. Anything going on in Limon? Any itinerary for that part of the Country?
The following, from the State Department website, led me to choose other parts of the country.

"Central neighborhood in Limon

Violent crime, such as armed robbery and assault, is common. Local police lack the resources to respond effectively to serious criminal incidents."

August 25, 2019, 10:33:51 AM
Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
Planning on doing Marriott 5th night free as my thinking is to stay on island #1 from Sun-Sun. Just need to decide which should Island should that be. Am currently leaning towards Kauai, as accommodations seem to be cheaper than Maui + can stay right near Chabad for Shabbos meal/davening (Courtyard at Coconut Beach).

But the few dollars I might save + Shabbos meal/minyan is not enough reason to make definitive choice unless it's really a case of "Six Of One, A Half Dozen Of The Other".
At this point it sounds like you want someone to make the decision for you.  Neither option is significantly better than the other, but might depend on where you plan to stay on Maui.

September 25, 2019, 03:12:47 PM
Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
If flying interisland on Hawaiian Airlines out of OGG/LIH, how much before the flight should I be at airport if have precheck/global entry? Wondering if can make the 9pm flight after Shabbos if over around 730pm.

On the assumption it's not doable, is a 4:30pm interisland arrival into LIH on erev shabbos too close for a 6:30pm sunset (candle lighting 6pm ish)? would stay at Marriot coconut beach (6.7 miles from airport) and take Uber/taxi.
Once did something similar to your first option and I absolutely would not want to do it again.  Don't think we had PreCheck back then, but the hold up was at check-in.  We were flying J(?) so were able to use the Priority lane, and made it to the gate just as they started boarding.  Your other option is even worse.

Not to say these aren't doable, but a Hawaiian vacation is usually to decrease stress, not increase it.

October 11, 2019, 06:00:36 AM
Re: Alaska - 8 days - August 2019 Amazing!  Trying to plan a return trip incorporating two modes of transportation you mention: the RR and the ferry.
November 20, 2019, 10:02:32 AM
Re: Forum Games: Missing Link
Word 1 Pool
Word(s) 2 Not Profound

December 11, 2019, 11:10:59 AM
Re: From East Coast to the West Coast in a week and a half. Not what I was expecting from your title, but looks like an amazing trip!
January 15, 2020, 02:47:05 AM
Re: Forum Games: Missing Link Garner
January 21, 2020, 08:01:40 PM
Re: Forum Games: Missing Link From the wiki:

The Poster of the correct Missing Link gets to post the new word2 in the following format:
word1= "old word2"
word2= "OP's new word"

January 24, 2020, 01:14:57 PM
Re: Prepping for COVID-19 In preparation, NYS should go back to plastic bags.  A bagger bags your groceries in your brand-spanking-new 50c bags, except that they had just picked up the virus.  Instead of tossing the bags, you keep them to reuse, spreading the virus.

Plastic is used in hospitals and other medical settings precisely because it is disposable, and helps prevent the spread of disease.  Now is not the time to force us away from it.

March 04, 2020, 06:35:25 PM
Re: How much is COVID-19 affecting your life now? How to make a cream cheese and lox sandwich, e.g.
Old way:
Wash hands
Make sandwich
Wash hands
Wash hamotzi

New way:
1. Wash hands 20 seconds
2. Get out bag of bagels, cream cheese, lox. Open all packaging.
3. Wash hands 20 seconds
4. Take a bagel out of the bag
5. Holding container of cream cheese in left hand, use knife in right hand to get some cream cheese.
6. Smear cream cheese on bagel...what? Are you holding the bagel in place with your left hand that just touched the container of cream cheese?!
7. Throw out bagel.
8. Sanitize container of cream cheese.
9. Wash hands 20 seconds
10. Get a new bagel.
11. Smear cream cheese
12. Put on lox
13. Wash hands
14. Wash hamotzi
15. Eat

March 05, 2020, 11:35:26 AM
Re: Tweets, Pictures, And Videos That Are Coronavirus Related
This was done way before Covid-19 came around.
Yes. It was irrelevant then, and unhelpful now.

March 09, 2020, 03:56:29 PM
Re: saw50st8 Louisiana and Missisippi TR @saw50st8  Your TRs are some of my favorites, as they're most like trips I'd take.  Any chance you can continue?
May 04, 2020, 08:42:08 AM
Re: Which US national parks have you been to? Which was your favorite?
My question if focused on your statement "you have to be willing to hike to experience and appreciate all of its beauty, not just drive..."

The problem is, that's not possible for families who travel with very little children and/or babies.

Hence my question to you and to everyone else here who's been to many NPs like you. Can you please list your top ten or twenty NPs (or even state parks for that matter, if they're nice enough), in order of your favorites, but specifically keeping in mind someone who can't go on any long or strenuous hikes, or any hikes impractical or unsafe for small children.

With that in mind, would Glacier still be your favorite? Or would that alter your order of preference entirely?


I'd like to go back to most of them, though Glacier is also high on my list. But at this point in life it's gonna have to be with little kids in tow.
Out of the 30 National Parks I've been to, 25 have been with kids 5 and under.  We just don't do long hikes, and that's fine...

Many moons ago, when I was in my early 20s (pre-kids), we did a ranger-guided hike to Iceberg Lake in Glacier National Park.  That's a 7-hour roundtrip hike, mostly uphill on the way there, mostly downhill on the way back.  The most memorable part was the knee pain on the way back.  Each step downhill sent shooting pain to my knees.  When we got back to the car, I wanted to sit for a year.  In retrospect, we were in terrible shape and should not have done the hike.  Having young kids actually keeps us from doing hikes we are not prepared for.   :-[  My new approach to hiking is that the payoff has to be something truly unique.  7 hours to hike up close to lava, I'll get through it somehow.  7 hours for a view?  Not a chance.

To answer your question, here are some NPs with nice hikes even kids can do/other activities for kids:

Indiana Dunes NPsand dunes
White Sands NPsand dunes
Great Sand Dunes NPsand dunes
Carlsbad Caverns NPcave
Mammoth Cave NPcave
Wind Cave NPcave
Hawai'i Volcanoes NPlava tube/cave
Sequoia NPhike to the General Sherman tree
Olympic NPHall of Mosses, beaches
Grand Canyon NPwalk up to great views
Yellowstone NPlots of short walks on boardwalks
Bryce NPshort walk among hoodoos

Almost all national parks have ranger-led activities that are appropriate for kids.

I have a friend that runs the Grand Canyon rim-to-rim-to-rim every year as a birthday present to himself, so he likes long hikes.  When his son was a year old, they did a cross-country road trip hitting up about 20 national parks.  He carried his son in his arms everywhere, so obviously no long hikes, but they still managed to see and enjoy quite a bit.

May 17, 2020, 11:16:39 AM
Re: COVID-19 (Wuhan Novel Coronavirus) Pandemic Master Thread In the five boroughs of NYC:

1 out of every 333 people in the Bronx has died of COVID-19
1 out of every 378 people in Queens has died of COVID-19
1 out of every 400 people in Brooklyn has died of COVID-19
1 out of every 510 people in Staten Island has died of COVID-19
1 out of every 590 people in Manhattan has died of COVID-19

(Based on estimated population for 2019, so actual numbers may be slightly lower.)

May 19, 2020, 09:54:24 AM
Re: RV/Motorhome/Camper Master Thread
is it wishful thinking to try to get a good rate for a one-way rental during august? Does anyone have experience?
How far is the one-way? Do you plan to do a route that many people do in both directions?  You may get a good rate on the rental itself, but one-way fees could be quite expensive.  Also, are you prepared to disinfect all surfaces?

May 20, 2020, 04:45:14 AM
Re: Tweets, Pictures, And Videos That Are Coronavirus Related
Why not lower it to 20 mph as that would reduce almost all fatal collisions?
DeBlasio has done better, reducing the speed limit by a middle school near me to 15 mph.  I'm not sure how these kids are going to survive to adulthood if they're taught that cars will stop for them.

May 21, 2020, 07:38:50 PM
Re: Violent protests erupt across the country
And the Democrats want to take away guns I counted thousands of black reasons to have one.

The second amendment should include because planet of the apes is real.
Wow. Racist much?

June 01, 2020, 05:16:36 AM
Re: COVID-19 Travel between Boston and Los Angeles You've mentioned before that you were a physician, and you're one of the regulars that I've noticed was missing.  Glad to hear that was due to a cross-country move, not anything worse, although sorry it's been as challenging as it has.
June 01, 2020, 05:57:35 AM
Re: North to the future. A promise fulfilled! Conquering the Last Frontier Every time I read an Alaska TR it makes me want to go back.
June 01, 2020, 06:29:19 AM
Re: Tweets, Pictures, And Videos That Are Coronavirus Related "Have you heard the joke about the cure for covid?  It's a riot."
June 10, 2020, 07:31:23 AM
Re: Life Hacks, Post Your Favorites! Quarantine hack:  push a popsicle stick through the foil top of an OJ SunCup, freeze.  "Instant" ices.
June 15, 2020, 09:32:57 PM
Re: Tischler Made It It's sad to me that we are contributing to this country's descent into anarchy.
June 16, 2020, 09:24:50 PM
Re: Out Of Control Fireworks Reminds me of my pre-Giuliani childhood.
July 04, 2020, 11:42:02 PM
Re: Is the need to feel safe white privilege? Not all of us grew up feeling safe, and to be told that because of our skin color we should be forced to feel unsafe again, is really triggering.  People of Color hardly have a monopoly on feeling unsafe.
July 13, 2020, 10:08:51 AM
Re: COVID-19 (Wuhan Novel Coronavirus) Pandemic Master Thread
Didn't CA do that yesterday?
Could very well be. I'm looking at worldometer numbers.

July 24, 2020, 10:45:23 AM