Off Yonder – Adventure Travel Stories - Seeing the world for what it is

Five Fingers Time Lapse
Adventure Unlimited Ranches, Buena Vista, Colorado, United States

While at Christmas camp, I set up my camera to take 30 second exposures for as long as the battery would last. Then I put another battery in and kept going. You’ll see the frame shift now and then, that’s probably a new battery going in. It’s not the most exciting video you’ve seen, but then again, this is my experimentation laboratory. Welcome to it. I’ll try to get a better one another time. Stay tuned.

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Weekend: Music & Planes
San Diego, California, United States

Alex Cook is out here on his West Coast CD release tour with a box of 300 “Tree of Life” CD’s. I made it to his show in Encinitas where the producer of the album, Jason Froese joined him to play bass. Andrew set up two video cameras to record the whole thing and I snapped a few stills, see below. The music is awesome and should be available to all via iTunes and the such soon. If you want to see Alex live yourself, check out his tour schedule at http://myspace.com/alexcookmusic. If your area isn’t on there, drop him a line and have him come out your way!

The next day, Dad and I headed to the Miramar Air Show. I’ve been to a few air shows, including this one years ago. But this was the best way to do an airshow: be on the Air Crew for a static display aircraft. Dad helped Pamala bring her T-34a Mentor over on Thursday and it’s one of the planes on display for folks to check out. As Air Crew, we got passes to the Air Crew Chalet, a little section of the flight line roped off where they provided us with meals, snacks, drinks and a place to sit and watch the air show in the sky. Dad and I got in early to get good parking in the special Static Display Crew Lot and really enjoyed the day. After the Blue Angles did their thing, we had to hand tow the T-34a past the public access area to the active ramp. Dad fired up the Mentor and flew it back to Gillespie while I drove the car over to pick him up. Select photos of the air show also below and on my Facebook Page and in my gallery.

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Sierra Adventure: Hwy 395
Sierra Mountains, Mammoth, California, United States

A little adventure up the Owens Valley and into the Sierra Mountains. Mammoth, Devils Postpile & Mono Lake. And some night photography! Click below to see more images.

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Focus UK 2009
Warsash, United Kingdom

Focus UK 2009I’ve just returned from a really great few weeks in England where I was part of a program called Focus. It’s a 10-day camp for Christian Scientists that only happens every four years. I worked as a house parent for the 8 under 18 boys and they were all great.

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Ausangante Trek
Nevado Ausangate, Peru

Our main objective in the two days we were back in Cusco was to get ready for the Ausangate trip. This included getting plenty of rest and getting our gear together. I needed to rent plastic mountaineering boots, crampons, an ice axe and a harness. Martin found Alfredo, a guide with Andean Destinations, who had everything I needed including a set of Asolo boots that were well worn. Nay, beaten – these boots had chunks of foam missing, delaminating Velcro, packed out liners and they stunk to high heaven. But they fit perfectly.

Dave and Martin went shopping to get our rations for the trip sorted out and now that the trip has passed, I can say they made some excellent choices. Though, most of the credit goes to our trip cook, Jose. I noticed he did some shopping along the way on the trek. Picking up fresh veggies and fruits from farm stands along the way and whipping it all up into multi-course gourmet meals each time we sat down to eat.

Instead of departing Cusco early in the morning as planned, we left late the night before for two reasons. First, the solstice celebrations were on the cusp of jamming up the city and second, the rumors of a farmers strike that we started hearing about in Patacancha were getting louder. They have been known to roll massive boulders out into the middle of the road in the wee hours of the morning just to jam things up to make their point. We wanted to avoid this so we made a late night escape out of the city to the small town of Tinki.

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CS Sentinel Interview: Beauty
Boston, Massachusetts, United States

I was recently interviewed by Kim Shippey, a senior editor at the Christian Science Sentinel about my views on beauty. It stemmed from my work as a photographer, but as you’ll see if you read the interview it gets deeper than that.

Anyway, requests have been made to get prints for the photo published in the Sentinel, so here it is. Just click on the photo and it will take you to where this photo can be purchased along with a gallery of images that were either mentioned in the interview or considered as candidates of ‘beauty’ as I saw it.

The full article appears in the 20/27 July (double issue) Sentinel on Beauty. It may eventually be available on the Sentinel website: http://www.spirituality.com/sentinel/

Feel free to leave comments below, but if you want to let the Sentinel know they’ve done good, drop them a line.

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Peruvian Peaks
Ausangate Trek, Peru

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I took a deep breath of the thin 5,500m (18,000 ft) air, scanned the beautiful scene of jagged rocks, sparkling white snow and deep blue glacier ice around me and slowly became more comfortable in my thought that we would not reach the peak. This is always a hard decision for any climber to make but when it’s the right thing to do, pushing against it can lead to very uncomfortable and sometimes disastrous situations.

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Larrabee Paddle & Bike
Larrabee State Park, Bellingham, Washington, United States

On a whirlwind tour to the beautiful Pacific Northwest, I ended up in Bellingham with the objective of getting some biking and paddling shots in Larrabee State Park. These are all available for sale as prints. If you like one click on it!

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Caribbean Sailing
Caribbean Sea, Nassau, The Bahamas

Ten days of sailing from Nassau, Bahamas to Panama City, Panama through the Panama Canal. Over 1700 miles covered, seas were fair, sunny most of the way. Crew: Shawn Griffith (Captain), Amy Griffith Redfern, Sasha Gates, Cameron MartindellLike || Tweet || More Photos || Purchase Photo

A pod of dolphins escorted us out as we sliced through the electric blue waters, departing Paradise Island near Nassau in The Bahamas. With 15 knots of wind, our jib was enough sail to pull us along through the small swells of water as we headed out to sea. The joy and thrill of embarking on a 10-day, 1,700-mile voyage across the Caribbean Sea glowed from each of the four of us delivering this beautiful 65-foot catamaran sailboat to Panama City.

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Atlas Trans-Sierra Snowshoe Trek
Independence, California, United States

The Sierra has truly been blessed this year with record snow fall. So, although the weather this spring and early summer has been warm, there is still plenty of snow in the beautiful backcountry. With that in mind, some colleagues at Atlas Snow-Shoe Company came up with the wild idea to do a traditional skiing route across the Sierra-Nevada mountain range on snowshoes. While this was admittedly for our own personal fun, we could justify it as a work trip to test the snowshoes.

The result was a 45 mile trek across the breadth of the Sierra. We started just east of Independence, off Highway 395, and hiked up Symmes Creek. After 12,000 feet of vertical gain and traveling and camping for six days above 11,000 feet, we arrived at the Wolverton Ski Area in Sequoia National Park. The route is usually done on skis with a few mountaineering sections to get over the highest passes, including Milestone Col on the Great Western Divide at over 13,000 feet.

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