TIME correspondent Jay Newton-Small and photographer Dima Gavrysh followed Sarah Palin’s bus tour of historic sites up the eastern seaboard nearly 400 miles from Washington DC to New York City via Gettysburg and Philadelphia. Along the way, the former Alaska governor (in leather!) and her family met fans at Rolling Thunder, the annual motorcycle parade to draw awareness to the plight of prisoners of war and missing in action, toured Mount Vernon and Revolutionary and Civil War battle sites and visited the Liberty Bell. All along the way the No. 1 question people asked: will she run for President? Though she was careful not to bill the trip as part of any kind of exploratory campaign, she did say she’s got a “fire in my belly” and is weighing getting in the race. Her daughter Piper, however, didn’t appreciate all the media attention. “Thanks for ruining our vacation,” she said to our photographer.
Jay Newton-Small has been following Sarah Palin since the 2008 election: