Descent Into Beauty

The tail of the rope made a snapping sound as it hit the ground after being pulled from the anchor.  I glanced down canyon, a rush of excitement and anxiety mixed in my stomach.  Once that first rappel rope was pulled, the only way out was down and through.  We gathered the rope,...

Reflections

Without thought or agenda, the earth inhales and exhales, extends and breaks down, meanders and reflects. Glassy lakes naturally mirror the shore-side trees and mountain peaks, offering an alternate view of the leafy branches that reach over the waters’ surface, as roots navigate the soils beneath. An opposing view and a change of perspective: a way we can look down, rest our eyes and observe again. Slow down, reflect. The trees do not need to be reminded to be calm and think; they grow steadily and with purpose. The mountains are not told to remain steady and strong, but still dominate our landscapes. However, the importance of gratitude...

Weathered Woods

In the high country of Colorado, the weather affects everything–it is inescapable.  From the growing of crops to raising cattle, ranchers make nearly every move based upon the weather, taking it as it comes.  Where is the history of the seasons?  It’s in the leathery wrinkles...

Ode To A Season

The crackling sound of fallen leaves under foot seems deafening, each step threatening to give away my position. The moisture in my breath crystallizes as it leaves my mouth, just another reminder that the warmth of summer is quickly retreating along with the hours of sunlight. The quaking...

Above The Clouds

Up above the clouds there exists a plain, wooden sign. It is simple in nature, merely decorating the border of states conceived long ago in the heads of our forefathers. It also serves as an adequate landmark for a Kodak moment that one day will be forgotten. The states mentioned above are...

Max Patch, NC

Long ago, a patch was cleared on a 4,000 foot mountain in the Appalachians of North Carolina.  A horse named Max used to graze there and keep the forest from taking it back.  He also gave the place its name.  After Max passed on, biplanes used the bald as a landing strip, as it was the largest clearing anywhere around.  But for us, a band of dirty thru-hikers on the Appalachian Trail, it provided quite the place to spend one beautiful and rowdy evening. The Appalachian Trail runs 2,100 miles from Georgia to Maine and each spring thousands of hikers attempt it in one fell swoop, or a thru-hike as it’s known.  People shed their lives...

Golden Aspens

We set out on our journey to find aspens in their full glory . . . and find them we did.   We wander, basking in the hues of flaming gold.   “There is a profoundness in this beauty,” she says, “listen to their whispers.”   A river of gold.   The...

Pura Vida. Costa Rica.

In Costa Rica, the local ticos and ticas have a saying . . . Pura Vida!  That means the pure life, and it is the answer to every question.  It comes down to the fact that when the pace of life slows down and the beauty of the natural world surrounds, nothing can get in the way of being real.  Guide Juan Carlos Rodriguez has captured a glimpse of the pure life in his beautiful photographs from the old-growth Rain Forest, and the flora and fauna that call it home.  Enjoy.  And, Pura...

Moab, UT

We turned off our cell-phones just as we reached the city limits.  For the next two weeks everything that happened had nothing to do with technology—we were off the grid and driving straight into the desert of Moab, Utah. The rendezvous with the rest of the party was set for main street,...

Along The Riverbank

Cradled in the calm of spring, the sounds of the rising river move me. Savoring the grasses, wildflowers and honeysuckle that encircle me, I look out over the field and begin breathing again. I cross the lush green and enter into a small entrance encouraged by redirecting branches and vines. A...

The Desert Rats

We were wild maniacs coming down the valley, out of the barren desert above.  None of us had seen fresh water for almost a week, and the discovery of a spring gushing out of the rock forty feet above sent us into a frenzy.  We danced around in the mist, screaming like animals.  The...