Peter Olsen Photography/Getty

Sunset editors make New Year’s resolutions, too. Here’s what we’re looking forward to doing more of in the West in 2020

Sunset Staff  – January 6, 2020

Opening the Book on 2020

Opening the Book on 2020
Jasmin Perez

Aside from the usual resolutions—drink more water, work out regularly—this year I want to focus on doing creative things that don’t require a computer screen. I can’t think of a better way to get my mind active than picking up a good old-fashioned book. I have a stack of books I never cracked open, so my goal is to start with those and work my way up. —Jasmin Perez, digital strategy director

Saving the Earth One Bag at a Time

Saving the Earth One Bag at a Time
Rosley Majid/EyeEm/Getty Images

I already exercise and eat fairly healthfully just as a habit, so every year I optimistically set some other noble (but somewhat arbitrary) resolution like “read more books.” (I know I should keep trying that one, but c’mon, watching TV and playing video games is more fun! To be fair, I do at least read magazines and the major newspapers.) Anyway, this year I’m setting a goal that can involve my whole family: buy/use less plastic crap. Yes, that means I’ll have to wash my spinach instead of buying it pre-washed in a tub, and will have to cut carrot sticks instead of reaching for bags of the baby ones, but I think it’s totally doable. Just for good measure, I’ve added a stretch goal of bringing my own take-out containers when I eat out. I know it’s all just a drop in the bucket, but the way I see it, even small steps can make big impacts. Doing something is better than doing nothing. —Heather Arndt Anderson, garden editor

Stainless Steel Bento Box, $22.88 from Amazon
   

Hiking Across Los Angeles

Hollywood Sign Tram
Getty Images/rodolfo_salgado

I moved from San Francisco to Los Angeles last year, and I’ve been slowly exploring the city and all the different things it has to offer. One of my favorite things about L.A. is the amazing number of hikes throughout it (and no bridges to cross to get to them!). This month it’s my mission to take on some of the treks that I’ve been meaning to do since arriving. Number one on my list? Hiking in Griffith Park—hopefully all the way to the Hollywood Sign! —Nena Farrell, Associate Home Editor

Seeing More of the West

Wildflower Super Bloom in Death Valley
Trina Dopp Photography/Getty Images

I love to travel, but somehow it seems that other things (hi there, rent and car repair) always seem to eat up my resources. But not this year. I want 2020 to be the year I check off some of the items on my Western travel bucket list. Unlike some resolutions (you can’t tell, but I just Hoovered up a piece of chocolate between sentences), I know I’m going to make at least a little progress on this one, because I already have a trip to Death Valley planned for April. I’m not sure how much further my resolve—or my credit card—will stretch, but my dream is to fill in a few more glaring blanks before the year is out, including Banff National Park, the island of Kauai, and, embarrassingly, the entire state of Montana. —Nicole Clausing, digital producer

Vacationing in a National Park

Thomas J. Story

Call it an occupational irony, if you will: I’ve only been to a grand total of two national parks, yet I know quite a bit about these natural treasures from all the extensive research and reporting the Sunset team has done over the ten years I’ve been on staff. 2020 is the year I’m going to bump up that sad little personal record with a trip to Zion National Park in the spring. It might still be too chilly to wade across the Narrows, but I can’t wait to take in the sight of it—and more of the majestic canyons, red rock formations, iconic trails, and other wonders the southern Utah park has to offer. To sweeten the pot, I’ll be bedding down in an Under Canvas glamping tent, another Sunset-inspired experience that’s been on my travel wish list for a while. —Jessica Mordo, associate digital director

Glamping Experience
   

Eating More Tijuana-Style Tacos

I’m always on the hunt for off-the-beaten-path delicious gems, from very good noodles to secretly incredible sandwich shops. I’m hoping to cram as many of these as possible into my year. One such gem is Tacos El Tucán, a taqueria serving Tijuana-style tacos just North of Berkeley, in Richmond, CA. The restaurant has been open just a couple of months, but it’s already become hugely popular for its flavorful adobada (Tijuana-style al pastor) cut from the trompo; and quesatacos, which are tacos that include a layer of crispy cheese that’s been toasted on the flat top. All tacos come with onion, cilantro, and avocado salsa, and the salsa bar offers more spicy options, including a very fresh curtido with red onion, cucumber, radish, and jalapeños. Located within a former A-frame hot dog stand, it’s got just 18 seats for dining in and lines have been growing daily, so plan accordingly. —Ellen Fort, food editor

Heading North

Grinnel Glacier at Glacier National Park off Highway 89
Courtesy of NPS

If 2019 saw me gorging on the Big City parts of the West, 2020 means a focus on out-of-the-way locales, or regions that I’ve left woefully unexplored. And most of those, for me, lie to the north. Take British Columbia, for example, or the Lost Coast of California, or the Oregon Coast. I’ve also left Glacier National Park on my to-do list for far too long, despite trips to the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, and Yellowstone, among others, in the rear-view. Most of these trips, I’ll be taking my truck. And I’ll be unplugging: targeting weekend or week-long backpacking trips to try to immerse myself in nature, rather than pesky notifications and news alerts. —Matt Bean, editor in chief

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