Blogs

Van Living: 13 Feet of Love

Van Living: 13 Feet of Love

Life with Olive By Lynn Kennen About a year ago I decided to change my life. I quit my reliable ‘normal’ job as the general manager of a restaurant in Tahoe City to be a nomadic guide for various adventure sports full time. I rented out my home in Tahoe City and moved into a succession of “van-life” vehicles: first a van, then a 4-Runner, and finally the 13-foot ’72 Bell travel trailer I call “Olive.” In those first several months with Olive, I lived, worked and played “on the road” throughout the western US, including mountain bike guiding in the Tahoe area with Tahoe Adventure Company, mountain bike and river guiding with Row Adventures in Idaho, Oregon and Washington, personal riding adventures in the Lost Sierra and Shasta areas, and my 12th annual trip to Burning Man. It wasn’t long before I realized I didn’t need much of...
Profiles in Courage: Jocelyn Judd

Profiles in Courage: Jocelyn Judd

Profiles in Courage: Jocelyn Judd By Domenica Berman Jocelyn paddling out on her first surf trip to Launiupoko, Maui with the High Fives Foundation in 2015. Photo: Trevor Clark Photography On the morning of April 19th, 2014, Jocelyn Judd donned her fat suit and hit the slopes. “Yeah, I think I bought the fat suit for Halloween the year before and never ended up wearing it, so I don’t know, I thought it would be funny to wear it skiing.” It was closing weekend of the season at Grand Targhee, Wyoming and everyone was goofing around. “My friend was videoing because I thought it would be funny to see what happened with the fat suit and my hair when I did a backflip,” Jocelyn chuckled. “I thought you know, I’ve been doing back flips since I was like 12, no big deal and then I just picked up way...
Mountain Monday: Halloween in the Hills

Mountain Monday: Halloween in the Hills

Adventures on All Hallows’ Eve By Meggan Wenbourne A dragon ascends the cliffs in Joshua Tree. As the years go on, I find myself losing the holiday sparkle and flair that I once felt when I was younger. Halloween is one of those holidays for me and I find myself making every excuse in the book to not participate. I loathed the idea of being caught outside in clothing that is not appropriate for the weather conditions with people I did not know … until I started climbing. Climbing really has been a lifestyle change for me beyond the normal smelly shoes, short fingernails and language of arm motions type of life most people think of when they the think of a textbook climber. I have found myself looking forward to the holidays again because it usually means longer chunks of time off work to go play somewhere outside...
Mountain Monday: Tahoe Basin Adventures

Mountain Monday: Tahoe Basin Adventures

Altitude training is not something to be rushed, but with new techniques and know-how, it can be sped up By Meggan Wenbourne A view of Cascade Lake from my run up to Maggie’s Peak. This last week I spent a majority of my time in the Tahoe Basin climbing, running and hiking with new friends from all over the world. With strong cups of coffee in our bellies and bluebird skies above, we found ourselves working hard every day against altitude and steep faces with smiles and kind-hearted banter. The objective was simple: expose ourselves to training for high altitude ascents. Sounds simple enough, right? Wrong. I live at sea level and I felt it … a lot. With the use of some of the best equipment on the market and the training regiments of some of the fastest speed ascensionists in the world, we learned that there is...
Profiles in Courage: Roy Tuscany

Profiles in Courage: Roy Tuscany

Profiles in Courage: Roy Tuscany By Domenica Berman Roy’s infectious energy shows as he gets out of the water at Duke’s Ocean Fest. Photo: Trevor Clark. “Holy shit, first place!” Roy Tuscany exclaimed at the scoreboard minutes after his third heat of the day. He’d won first in his heat and advanced straight to the finals the next day in the Ventura Paddle Surfing Championships on October 7th. The Paddle Surfing Championships include“open” events for all athletes and also“adaptive” competitions for athletes who are disabled in one way or another. The adaptive athletes use waveskis, which are a mix of a kayak and a surfboard for maximum paddle power and maneuverability. When I asked Roy how it felt to win his heat he said with a laugh, “It’s really fun to win something again! It’s been a long time.” He went on to explain, “Ever since my injury, competition...
Mountain Monday: Quick Chat About Safety

Mountain Monday: Quick Chat About Safety

When you take off into the mountains, sometimes bad things can happen – be prepared! By Meggan Wenbourne A photo from one of my skills classes, learning how to build multi-point anchors- yet another way to be prepared! A friend’s recent experience in the mountains has reminded me that going out into the wilderness, even if it is just for a weekend warrior trip to get some climbing in, can turn into a life or death situation in a split second. Sometimes the only option you may have is to depend on the trained skills you and the people around you have received to lessen the severity of the situation until alternative help arrives. That being said, I am a firm believer in being prepared for all types of situations and I work hard to make sure I always have a plan. I’m the type of person who always has...
Fat Tire Tuesday: Callin’ It Quits

Fat Tire Tuesday: Callin’ It Quits

When smiles are more important than miles By Sarah Hansing Well, okay, ain’t nobody quitting here. But who doesn’t love a silly selfie with SMILE written all over it? !! Photo: Jenni Shafer The best intentions.   It is truly always with the best intentions that I begin a bike ride. I mean, I LOVE riding bikes. It’s just that … it’s been a long day at work, and maybe I’m feeling just a bit run down. BUT. My attitude has had a serious talking to and my zen / flow state of mind has been informed that it’s on-deck, and should start warming up. It’s game time. Aaaannnnddd….. No. See now, I got home from work. I shimmied into my lycra, I put my helmet light on. I got my bike out of the garage. I pumped up my tires. (I gave myself a pep talk). I forgot my...
Learning to Fly: Entry Log 5

Learning to Fly: Entry Log 5

Pretty in Pink By Sequoia Schmidt Photo: Skydive Perris Flying does not come naturally to me. Believe it or not, flying does come naturally to a few people, I’m just not one of them. Failing level 2 of my AFF (Accelerated Free Fall Program) was an important lesson for me on my journey of “learning to fly.” Since I failed the second level, I had to spend more time training in the tunnel and preparing myself mentally for each jump. Rather than carelessly throwing my body out of the plane, as I did in jump 2;   I was re-directed to focus and visualize specifically about each skydive, before I exited the plane. Continual repetitions of “presenting myself to the wind”  were required instead of simply jumping out of the aircraft. It has been two weeks since my last jump, so I want to ensure that my mind...
Fat Tire Tuesday: Déjà Vu

Fat Tire Tuesday: Déjà Vu

Back to basics … back to SMILES By Sarah Hansing Mountain biking. It’s damn straight something to smile about !! Sigh.   And here we are again. It seems like a terrible case of déjà vu, sometimes, really. Get fit. Get stoked! Get injured. Get *ahem* slightly (but seriously – let’s be realistic here. It’s WAAAYY more than “slightly”) unfit.   Get bummed.   Get avoidant about riding (cause getting back on the bike is gonna hurt, let there be no doubts about THAT).   Get determined.   Get BACK on the bike (even though you KNOW it’s gonna hurt). Get a reality check. Really REALLY dislike that reality check.   And now comes the really really important parts: decide what to do about that reality check. It’s kind of hard to separate action and consequence from mental fortitude, sometimes …  but it’s important to try. We can tend to blame ourselves instead of...
Mountain Monday: Beneath the Shade of the Big Trees

Mountain Monday: Beneath the Shade of the Big Trees

Hiking through the sempervirens and swimming in the Stan By Meggan Wenbourne Could it be Abraham Lincoln? Many Sempervirens have been named throughout the park. Sometimes all you really need is a trip to the mountains to swim in fresh water. I am biased, I much prefer fresh water to salt water. I like being able to open my eyes underwater and enjoy seeing shorelines covered in trees. There is something special about swimming up high in the mountains in the summertime and this weekend was no exception. My partner and I found ourselves up in the mid-elevation Sierra playing in reservoirs and floating in the Stanislaus River. With ospreys circling overhead and little fish nipping at our toes, we were in complete heaven and could have stayed for a few more weeks. 😉 To me, this area has always held a special place in my heart. It is...
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