I wake up to the bubbling voices of my coworkers/compatriots, but as I’m wont to do on mornings where we’ll be departing, I spend the first bit of the morning packing everything up – all I’ll have to do is have my coffee, say goodbye, and then Spesh and I are off on the solo part of our adventure. By the time I’m satisfied with the progress I’ve made, I zip open the tent to find that I’m alone, all the cars gone but ours. Um.
The Park Formerly Known As Mukuntuweap
Despite the warmth in the tent, the morning outside is clear and fresh and fucking freezing, and it takes barely a quarter of an unzip to tell I’m gonna have a bad time if I don’t put on pants. Well. Summer’s coming. I hope. Continue reading
Miles 0-312: Training Wheels
One of the first things I learn about my new job – after driving in our new ride for the first time and meeting the other teams for the first time and making a family dinner that, despite the fact that it is the first time, actually feels like a family dinner – is that everyone, across the board, is an early riser. For the returning teams, this seems to be partially a function of the relative earliness of events, and for the other new team, it’s more a function of coming from the East Coast and attempting to maintain a
normal-for-them rigorous exercise regime; for Spesh, it seems to be a function of either insomnia or his ability to effortlessly fit in. Aaaand then there’s me.
Start Your Engines
Spesh and I are about to emerge from our training cocoons as Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer butterflies, so I thought I’d just give a bit of an update before the longer updates begin:
- I’ll be doing updates at least once a week from here on out; rather than labeling these by days/weeks, as is my wont, I’m gonna label them with real-time mileage from our Subaru. So don’t get confused if you see I’ve “hiked” 1000+ miles in a week. I’m not that awesome.
- Part of the job is to travel cool places and do cool things, so I’ll have plenty of adventures to tell you about, starting tomorrow. I’m going to try to make Thursday publishing day; anything I publish any other day will be bonussssss awww yisss.
- More information on the job and what it entails, including links and such, can now be found on The Route page; any questions that doesn’t answer you can ask here in the comments, or hit me up through the Contact page.
- Also Snorkel wrote a book that I (and many others) contributed to; it’s called Backpacker Long Trails, and it’s already been favorably reviewed on Reddit. It’s ENORMOUS and has all sorts of rad information in it for both beginners and folks who’re looking to refine their technique or go ultralight or or or. I think it’s a boss resource that basically mimics my introduction to backpacking – as very straightforward tips from a variety of people with a variety of styles who all want to see you succeed.
- Also also apparently they named a dinosaur after Zuul. Real life has conspired to bring together my trail name and my trail shenanigans. (That it’s apparently the ‘Destroyer of Shins’ is just a bonus.)
Tomorrow it’s fun fun fun with a post about training and physical sickness and metaphysical sickness – see you then!
One of the bonuses about my upcoming foray into more teaching and professional road-tripping as a Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer is that the region we’ve been assigned is the region where I spent my formative years. It’s so strange to think that after all this traveling, after living on two other continents and in a boatload of other states to boot, I’m gonna wind up right back where I started. Kind of. Sort of. Continue reading
After months of stasis, things are finally starting to come alive again. And it’s not just the winter, which felt shorter than usual – it’s been rare that I’ve worn a coat in the last two weeks – but after a dearth of work, a dearth of purpose, things are finally picking back up on the life front. Continue reading
Interlude: Well, That Happened.
It seems that Donald Trump was just sworn in as the 45th President of the United States.
I’ve seen a lot of posts to the tune of “this can’t be happening”/”this can’t be real”/”this must be a bad dream” after the election and in the weeks since, particularly given the influx of cabinet appointments of people who are either unqualified or have incredible conflicts of interest.
Y’all. This is happening. This is real. This is not a bad dream.
But you’re right in feeling that something’s not right. It’s not right that Congress has made it easier to transfer public lands to states, and easier for states to sell those public lands to private interests. It’s not right that Congress wants to make it harder for federal agencies to do anything about climate change or to classify species as endangered, regardless of what scientists have to say about either matter. It’s not right that Congress wants to gut the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, and make it harder for similar laws – that protect all of us and our public spaces – to get on the books. As people who enjoy our outdoor public spaces, none of this should feel right.
But as today and tomorrow are days of action around the country, today I’m going to focus on concrete action. Here are some things you can do to try to protect our wild spaces: