The answer lies hidden in the American wilderness. These iconic personalities are linked to places — some easy to look up, others darn-near impossible to find — with legends, stories, and little-known facts that bring history back to life. Here are five destinations for hiking, backpacking — or just plain old looking — that might stir feelings of intrigue, inspiration, and awe.
Overhanging Rock, Glacier Point, Yosemite, CA For history buffs, this perch of granite (left) has a storied past. In 1903, rough-riding president Teddy Roosevelt met with Sierra Club patriarch John Muir at this very rock in Yosemite, where the two camped out for four days and (along with posing in this very famous picture) talked conservation, environmental protection, and better park management for Yosemite. And they couldn't have picked a better spot than Glacier Point — a lookout high above the Yosemite Valley that beholds a condensed paradise resplendent with Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, and Yosemite's high country.
Cather Prairie, Redcloud, Nebraska Eco-tourists can visit the 608 acres of wild American prairie that were dedicated for a Pulitzer-winning forerunner of modern American literature, Willa Cather, a name deeply rooted in the land. Moving from Virginia when she was 11 years old, Cather trekked with her family across this very expanse of Redcloud's sprawling prairie: a fenceless source of inspiration for Cather that allowed her to pen American classics like Death Came to the Archbishop, O Pioneers! and My Antonia.