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LWCF ProtectionIn a bipartisan approach to land protection, the House Natural Resource Committee on Thursday advanced a bill that would permanently reauthorize the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund. This is great news for the Pacific Crest Trail. With the committee vote, the legislation to renew the country’s most important land conservation program has a real chance of passage. Work continues on the bill, and it will still take a big effort to get it through both houses of Congress before the program expires on Sept. 30. Hikers on the Trinity Divide, an ongoing PCTA project to protect 17 miles of the PCT using the LWCF. The Land and Water Conservation Fund is a federal land protection program crucial to the long-term protection of the PCT and the experience it provides, as well as to the other scenic, historic and recreation trails in the National Trails System. Over the last 17 years, almost $36 million from the LWCF has been used to acquire and permanently protect about 23,000 acres along the PCT. Much of that work has been done since 2015, when the Pacific Crest Trail Association expanded its Land Protection Program. “Ten percent of the Pacific Crest Trail still lacks...
This past weekend I explored a new hike in Yosemite National Park! I hiked to two beautiful lookout spots off of Glacier Road: Sentinel Dome and Taft Point.
“Yesterday we went on a 7.2 mile hike and on the way down the mountain we ran into a little problem. A random hiker’s dog was struck with heat exhaustion with 3 miles left to go and couldn’t make the rest of the hike."
I found out about the Pinnacles National Park back in 2013 when it was officially declared the newest National Park in California (it had previously been a national monument) and I have wanted to visit ever since.
The modern reality is that kids are going farther away for continuing their lives after high school than their parents’ generation did. Whether it is the 45-minute drive to the state university or taking the dream job on the opposite coast, any distance can be enough to change many dynamics. However, just because the frequency or duration of time spent with loved ones isn’t the same doesn’t mean the bond has to deteriorate. Growing up in the suburbs of Cleveland, my dad and I were always close. I started Scouting in the first grade and he was involved every step of the way, even after I left home for college. There is something about camping every month and going to work with each other that creates a unique bond between father and son. The bond that my father and I have is special, but not unique. Nearly everyone can stop right now and think about a family member or best-friend that they wish they had more time to spend with. So here is my advice to making sure that bond stays strong, create tradition. Creating Tradition Moving four hours away put an end to camping every month, but it didn’t take...
For the common budget traveler, buying your food from stands and supermarkets can be a great way to minimize expenses and give yourself the flavors of a region. However, most markets these days carry many similar items to what we can find at home and, as creatures of comfort, we’ll tend to buy what we know. One way to get around this pitfall of human behavior is to get an idea of how the locals use their ingredients. Here in Argentina, it was immediately apparent that meat was the central basis of all important meals. More so, we found that the style of cooking it mattered as much, or more, than the quality of cut you used. So for this first post in How to Grocery Shop in Latin America (a 4-part series), we’ll talk about the Argentine Asado and what you’ll need to have a successful meal with your new culinary insights. Let’s start by defining what this term means: Asado is a term used both for a range of barbecue techniques and the social event of having or attending a barbecue in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay and Uruguay, where it is an exceptionally popular dish. In these countries, asado is a traditional...
To my wonderful mother: Thank you for teaching me to love the outdoors. While most of my friends grew up with Disney Land and Six Flags, I grew up with weekend trips to Rainier with my family, scraping my knees on mountains instead of concrete. I have my mother to thank for that, who dragged my dad, my 2 brothers and I to nearly every national park in the Northwest USA (and Alberta) by the time I was 11. That’s right- In addition to my birth, these great genes, and thousands of dollars, I also have some of my best memories to thank my mother for. Now that I’m close to graduating college, I’m hoping it’ll be my turn to treat her and drag her all over the world. Take your Kids Exploring- even if they initially might not want to. I’m not going to lie- when I was younger I didn’t appreciate campouts nearly as much as I should have. Did I whine about the long car rides? Yes. Not being able to shower for 3 days? Yes. Waking up with the first crack of sunlight? Oh, absolutely. To anyone who’s experienced Mother Nature full force, you won’t be surprised to...
Stand up paddle boarding has spread like wildfire, and grown enormously in popularity in recent years; and why not? It looks like crazy awesome fun! From oceans to rivers and lakes, adventurers are taking their paddle boards on all kinds of water for beginners to SUP masters. Homo sapiens have been paddling crafts of this design for thousands of years, and tracing the exact history of SUP can differ depending on which dude brah is telling the story. Ancient cultures from South America and Africa used canoes and long boards to travel up and down rivers with long poles to propel and steer themselves. These homemade crafts were used for travel, fishing and hopefully picking up dates for a night out! Surfing however is typically linked with Polynesian ancestry, and the story of Captain Cook first encountering native Hawaiians “hanging ten” in 1778. Paddle boards today come in all kinds of unique shapes, sizes, designs and price ranges for anyone who’s ready to give it a go. Lots of outdoors stores and SUP shops will even let you demo a paddle board before buying. Here are some tips to guide you on your journey to SUP nirvana! Obviously your board...
Positivity and Perspective Growing up, my dad used to tell me ‘…train your brain to think positive thoughts instead of negative ones.’  Of course, being a teenager, I would let his advice go in one ear and right out the other! Guess what? It was actually a good suggestion. There is more than one way to view any situation you encounter.  It is vital as you enter each one, to challenge yourself to search for the positive. Your attitude is the most important aspect of your life; since it shapes all that you encounter. “Whatever happens to you belongs to you. Make it yours. Feed it to yourself even if it feels impossible to swallow. Let it nurture you, because it will.” –Cheryl Strayed   Meaningful Relationships Into the Wild, is a true story about a young man who gave up everything to go into the woods, alone. He strove to understand life’s meaning and redefine the true meaning of friendships and relationships. Christopher McCandless had it all, in terms of success in today’s world. He had two loving parents, a degree from Emory University and lots of money.  Unfortunately, for some reason his life was missing something. He took a venture into...

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