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Grand Western Vistas

Readers share their favorite places with a view.

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Grand western views, Glacier peaks, Montana, image
Photo caption
The view from Big Mountain in Whitefish, Mont. is spectacular.


GLACIER NATIONAL PARK PEAKS from Big Mountain, Whitefish, Mont. "Winter or summer, just take the lift up to the summit," writes Lindsey Nelson of Whitefish. "Nowhere else can you get such a stunning view of the Rocky Mountains—south to the Swan Range and north into the Canadian Rockies."

MAUI COASTLINE from the highway near Hana, Hawaii. "Breathtaking scenery," promises Dave Taube of Eugene, Ore. "Beautiful tropical flowers growing on both sides of the road, tumbling waterfalls inland, and below you the expansive Pacific Ocean."

MOUNT HOOD from near Sandy, Ore. "From the Jonsrud Viewpoint on Bluff Road, off Highway 26, you look hundreds of feet down to the meandering Sandy River," says Jack Caldwell of Lake Oswego, Ore. "And straight ahead is the glacier-covered mountain in all its glory."

PUGET SOUND from northern Whidbey Island, Wash. "Park near the bridge at Deception Pass," says Susan Faulkner of Redding, Calif. "It's a narrow pass with rocky sides, swift water, and a 180-degree view of spectacular Puget Sound and, beyond, the snowcapped Olympic Mountains. It's wonderful in all sorts of weather."

SAN ANTONIO VALLEY from Mission San Antonio de Padua, Jolon, Calif. "In the spring the whole area is covered by flowers—blue lupines, pink owl's clover, yellow buttercups, golden poppies, purple larkspur," writes Ruth Hunter of Alameda, Calif. "It's as if God took big buckets of paint and tossed them over the landscape."

SAWTOOTH RANGE from Grandjean, Idaho. "The most beautiful scenery in America," writes Ed Riche of Boise. "The range is shaped like the edge of a ripsaw blade. Many peaks in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area reach skyward over 10,000 feet."

SIERRA NEVADA AND OWENS VALLEY from the White Mountains above Big Pine, Calif. "Absolutely spectacular!" writes Donald Lewis of Lafayette, Calif., about the vista from Highway 168. "One of the greatest California drives."

VEDAUWOO ROCK FORMATIONS from Interstate 80 east of Laramie, Wyo. "Magical—a natural wonder," says Kristin Espeland of Laramie. "You can see these massive formations from the highway, but the round, red-brown rocks deserve a close look. They're shaped like piles of eggs or stacks of giant baked potatoes. It's an eerie rockscape well worth a detour. You'll leave wondering how these massive bodies of stone stay glued together."

Photography by Lindsey Nelson


This article was first published in March 2007. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.