Wednesday, December 31, 2014

"Our Year's End 'Finis'....."

On the last page of this little 'Adventure Muse' is one of my very favorite quotes by Viktor Frankl . He said "The Latin word for 'finis' has two meanings: the end or finish, and a goal to reach...".
Every time I, or a Friend places one of these small touchstone gifts, I think about why I've included it. It was put just there, in the last bit, for many reasons. Then it just might spark some musings about its endless meanings.
As adventurers, I think we all sense, then feel, and finally know, the truth of these words the further and longer we wander out among the wild places.
We may come to the end of a climb but really are only just beginning we eventually see.
The trail may seem to be completed, yet our path is only truly getting going.
That ridge route appears finite, but the vista's and perceptions opening up are clearly not.
A longed for adventure experience may be in its last stages, but the callings we then continue to hear are even more pronounced now.
Our efforts out there are over and done, yet the echoes of what these mean are simply getting started.
We attain a point on the map, accomplish an elusive objective, then we go on to discover still other sources, even further energies, and destinations yet to be revealed.
Such passages may feel occasionally like they are in their last phases, but now we realize too they are reflections of endless possibilities .
We bring together the days end by eventually closing our eyes out in a tent or under the stars . Then we dream about new beginnings and the meanings for why we do what we do when out adventuring among the wild places.
What appeared final, we now know to be primal. What seemed last, we sense now to be first. What looked as closure, we discover to hold amazing potential.
Then Frankl's quote echoes out yet again and promises us all so very many further wonders and farther adventures..... DSD
A distinct dedication this year's end day to all of those who are Adventuring For Another Reason this season.

Monday, December 29, 2014

"Gazing Within That Kindle, Crackle, And Sparkle..."

A little kindle in the beginning, just some initial enthusiasm at first, only a bit, but essential for the whole journey, as here we go, kindling our way... Then comes the energetic crackle, as the momentum takes us further, farther along our adventurous ways. Now the fires of intention, commitment, and motivation are burning more brightly, consistently so strongly, then there we are, within the firelight and its' crackle... Sparkle is the inevitable result, the gleam to be found in our eyes, the smiles there too upon our happily tired faces. We sparkle with bright memories, and powerful connections now as well, never to lose that ground, gained through these wonderful journeys... Kindle, crackle, and sparkle... From musings by this warm fire, looking up at stars, and deep into those flames, then across at close friends, with such warmth in my heart... DSD 

"Of Ending & Starting..."

"If the trail you are following ends, the time has come to start your own." Dean K. Miller 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

"Of This Year's Trail's End..."

"We shall not cease from exploration and at the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know it for the first time...". T.S. Elliot
That adventure day by the sea, when I could sense the end of the trail approaching, there was that deep emotion of contentment, and yet a gentle tired kind of sadness as well.
I recognize we all experience this occasionally.
When we each attain a really elusive adventure goal out there, with all of those so special celebratory emotions. Then at times we sense upon completion a touch of those other feelings of, 'Oh, Its over'...
Pretty natural it seems, to truly experience both, when we invest ourselves so intensely and purposefully within our journeys.
So, I did what we wanderers often do and pondered this a bit, while allowing myself to experience all those musings and emotions all at the same time.
Then much later, as I rested upon a further mountain, after having had that similar summit rush of these sensations, I reminded myself of that very old saying, 'that when one trail seems to end, another path always opens up'.
I reflected too on another old saying that, 'while we may shed a tear about such an experience being over, we can clearly smile as well for having lived those forever moments'.
There are many manifestations of these wise and wild old ponderings.
So, then, if we keep ourselves open to what is always out there on the horizon; if we accept that there is always more within us than ever first realized; if we blend with the truths that there is never an end to the creation of amazing memories, possible connections, and shared wonderful stories - then our trails will forever keep on going so much farther, higher, upward, onward, and inward...
Seeming endings always then become new beginnings and as Muir reminds us as well, "This grand show is eternal... It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never dried at once; a shower is forever falling; vapour is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal sunset, eternal dawn and gloaming, on seas and continents and islands, each in turn, as the round earth rolls".
Happy endless end of the year trails to all of you my Friends..... DSD

"If We Have Given..."

"If you always give... You always have...". Proverb

Time for celebration and enjoyment,
Moments of such connection and remembrance,
Then out upon courses we all hope to set,
So renewed in our enthusiasm and commitment.

A very happy holidays, and season of sharing, to you all, Dear Friends, Dear Finders, and a very happy new year to all of us who wander..... DSD   

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

"Be Well......."

A simple saying discovered while distant wandering resonates nicely for this time of year...
'Be well my friends, be well...'
In this time of celebrations, connections, and fun,
During a season that may, like adventures, both invite us and also challenge us,
In the midst of our shared holiday spirits,
Be well...
As we remember to focus on what is truly important,
Even as so much grasps for our attention,
If the pace gets more than a bit hectic, as when that storm rolled in off of the ocean, or those winds whipped up across that lake,
Pause for your moments, like you did on that elusive summit,
And be well...
Recall your amazing adventure experiences these last twelve months,
Draw upon those many wonderful wild place moments these past four seasons,
Breath them all in again as you share laughter and love with family, friends, and fellows,
And be well my Friends, be well Dear Finders,
Be well..... DSD 

"The Giver Should Be Thankful..."


"It is written even still... that the giver should be thankful; only then is it a sharing... Somebody accepted you through your gift...". Osho
"In becoming a giver... we establish an affinity with all creatures in the world...". Dogen
My sincere gratitude to you all Dear Finders, and Partners In Placing , for your having allowed me to gift you with a small Summit Stone..... DSD  

Sunday, December 21, 2014

"The Wonderful Gift Of Experiences..."

Most of us bestow things upon one another during this season of giving.
I have often mused, and written about here, over the nature of another kind of offering. This is a deeper kind of present for another, or as an endowment maybe for ourselves, which holds out such potent and significant meanings.
What you felt so strongly during that river rafting trip; recall the energy and emotions when out on those trails of your favorite hikes; think for a moment about when you were sea kayaking to that coastal island you were sure no one had ever set foot upon.
Feel again those same sensations, that enchanting sense of wonder, when you attained that very first summit; go back and relive that special time when a certain spirit animal appeared in the trees before you, just when you needed it so.
All of these knowings, and so many more from out there, are the gifts of adventure experiences. These are the gifts that the wild places wrap up for each of us, that we give ourselves too when we head out, that we also present to others in so many shared ways - the gift of experiences...
So, remember too, that canyoneering day when you pushed so hard to get beyond yourself; that very long rappel into the the mists so memorable; the times lowering into the depths of those caves so dark and yet so illuminating. All are also such potent and powerful gifts of experiences.
We do give one another, and ourselves, such nice things at times - yet a gift of experience holds another level of enduring beauty within it.
That which we experience out there, and then weave into our experiences back here, are truly meaningful offerings - of smiles and laughter, of challenges and effort, of sunshine and tears - these are bestowed upon us through journeys within the wild places.
They become branded in our memories; they touch us in our very hearts; and they are always there to further inspire our spirits.
Such life defining moments we meet with and undergo out there, regardless of when solo or those shared in fellowship, is what is really at the end of any rainbow. Then if we pass forward these adventure experiences, they then become a gift twice given.
And that is a beautiful experience too.
So, in the spirit of this season of sharing and giving, do I wish for you Dear Friends, Dear Finders, that the gift of experiences becomes a bountiful cherished present within your lives..... DSD  

Saturday, December 20, 2014

"Of Gifts & Expectations..."

"A wonderful gift may not be wrapped as you expect...".  J.L. Huie

"Of Light & Giving..."

"As we work to create light for others, we naturally enlighten our own way...". M.A. Radmacher

"However Small..."

"No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted...". Aesop

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

"Your Muse's Gift..."

"The adventure of a mystery... Your adventure muse has her ways, she hides from you, comes to you in the middle of the night, at midday, at dawn... An elusive gift that can appear anytime...". M. Hart

"Gifts From The Sea..."

"One should lie empty, open, choiceless as a beach - waiting for a gift from the sea...". A. Lindbergh

Sunday, December 14, 2014

"Our Shared Gifts Within Adversity..."

It may seem very unusual to wish adversity as a gift for one another within this sharing season, but therein is the power of natural paradox... At times in my own struggles, I may stubbornly resist such uphill trials and have difficulty in reframing them as growth through challenge... Yet the natural world is truly a wild place of such challenges, of constant order yet chaos, of heightened perception about the clear unknown, of desires and elements that push and test an adventurer to and past preconceived limits...
We may not always think about it in these ways but what draws us, what we often seek out there for adventure and fun, is in many ways synonymous with that which adversity itself offers us in return...
When I recall the adversity gifts bestowed upon me for example, I remember... Fears of open ocean, wind and waves... Multi day distant treks and getting very lost... Continuously elusive mountain summits... Unexpected impacts of terrain and altitude... Fitness challenges of injury and age... 5.9 routes that always seemed just beyond my grasp... Caving and my surprising reactions within enclosed spaces... among so many others...
Yet as Goddard & Neumann write about the adventure of climbing: "Realize why you climb. Climbing is not rewarding in spite of its frustrations. It is rewarding because of the very factors that can make it frustrating." Such enduring words as this are gifts of wisdom and insight too...
A. Hobson also said: "Adventure by its very nature, involves overcoming uncertainty, fear, obstacles, adversity and the unknown." F. Youngblood mused too how, "To those who have struggled with them, the mountains reveal beauties they will not disclose to those who make no effort." While Grandfather, a Mountain Elder, said... "Yes it can be a trial. Fear, doubt, pain, discomfort - these can be part of the price to be paid. Yet the gifts you have bartered for with your blood and your breath - what wealth! They will resonate with your very soul."
Such an amazing gift is the adversity within adventure.....
The present is often in the unexpected, the surprising things we discover - most often about ourselves... The reward is in the act itself of being out there in the midst of both the sunsets and the storms. And then we know too with such real certainty of the unopened presents to bestow upon ourselves of other future possibilities still waiting to be found within our wild places...
P. Stoltz & E. Weihenmayer said of this gift: "May adversity become the pathway through which you flourish." S. Covey wrote also; "One key lesson is this: no challenge and adversity, no deeper sense of meaning and purpose."
Is this not a fundamental motive for why we cherish and wish to protect those wild places where we have devoted our precious energy, time, sweat, tears, hopes, and fears...
S. Covey himself acknowledges: "Adversity has inspired me to be an alchemist, to turn lead into gold." And that pot of gold waits for you out there at the end of a wonderful trail of tribulations...
Those who find themselves through adventure adversity are indeed gifted with awareness and abilities and memories so vivid and valuable... The tears we may experience of frustration can be alchemized into the tears we know within joy.
Because as E. Weihenmayer mused further; "Isn't there something incredibly riveting about the human struggle with adversity? Maybe it's because within the struggle lies the essential wisdom we all need to become the kind of person we hope to be".
So, wish upon those stars we may see within another sleepless night in the midst of trial by rock, water, wind and waves.
Trek towards a hard to reach horizon of your dreams.
Continue to seek out the possibility hidden in that alpenglow just before you begin your most difficult climb.
Keep looking for that rainbow wrapped summit that you have trained yourself for over so many years.
For within this season, all these things, and adversity too, do I hope and wish for you..... DSD

Saturday, December 13, 2014

"Giving Of Any Kind..."

"Giving of any kind... taking an action... begins the process of change, and moves us to remember that we are part of a much greater universe...".  M. Creazzo

"Getting And Giving..."

"We make a living by what we get... We make a life by what we give...". W.S. Churchill

Dedicated this adventure day, within our shared season of giving, to those Partners In Placing who pass forward smiles all along the way... DSD

Friday, December 12, 2014

"Of Mountains And Gifts..."


"We were two men in a land of stone and we walked toward the same star...
That... was the gift of our mountains". G. Rebuffat

Stones and stars,
Rock and sky,
Wind and waves,
Wild wonders to ponder,
Elemental gifts while we wander...

"Within The Gift Of Joy..."

"There are souls in this world who have the gift of finding joy everywhere, and leaving it behind them where ever they go...". F.W. Faber

Dedicated this adventure day to all of those Partners In Placing who adventure so very far and also share smiles all along the way.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

"Of Giving..."

"The heart that gives, gathers...". Tao Te Ching

"Truly A Gift....."

Each and every time out there is a gift,
Amazingly beautiful gifts within our journeys,
Every journey holds gems hidden within,
Hidden only though at the very first...
From the first time there are always endless wonders,
True wonders discovered as we long and far wander,
Our wandering adventures then become forever longings,
Forever moments from seemingly only simple steps.
Every step then a dearly and cherished memory,
Then all such memories are truly a gift..... DSD

Dedicated this adventure day to all those wonderful wanderers who are 'Adventuring For Another Reason'

Saturday, December 06, 2014

"The Greatest Gift..."


"The greatest gift you can ever give another person, is your own happiness...". E. Hicks

"The Best Gifts Of All..."

"Memories are perhaps the best gifts of all...". G. Gaither

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

"Gifts Within The Four Directions..."

"Remember... The gifts of the four directions. The East is the new day, renewal, innocence, hope, joy, and new beginnings. The South is learning, preparing, strength, sensitivity, goals, and reflection. The West is the unknown, of dreams, meditation, going within, and a place of testing. The North is about wisdom, moderation, teachers, elders, fulfilment, and memories. There is no ending in the journey of the four directions...". Grey Wolf

Sunday, November 30, 2014

"Still Listening..."

We were not talking so much at this point way back then. A very long hike to an elusive high place that day, with much laughter and discussion about life's journeys all along the trail. We almost hadn't gone, such was the weather and the other distractions back here. But out there now, in those moments, I found myself not saying as much, but rather simply listening more attentively again...
Just simply hearing through my memories - for what our Outward Bound Leaders, those old wise Mountain Guides, and especially for that so very experienced Sea Kayak Instructor, who all seemed to be saying one clear thing: "Take time to listen", they all said in their own unique ways...
'Listen' for those so quiet voices from out over the waters and waves; for those voices of encouragement and commitment.
'Listen' for those special personal sounds among the trees and the winds; for whispers of motivations yet to be discovered.
'Listen' for your own music within the storms; as they will always share their wild secrets.
We each will surely experience our own adventure audibles, as we quietly listen in those many ways with our ears, our minds, and our spirit too. We each will truly hear personal messages as well from deep within our individual desires, dreams, and intuition.
I guess that I am very glad, just so happy that in remembering to hear their voices echo in my mind again, now I am simply listening yet once more...
Because I sense that if we stop listening so, then we might just lose our way.
We might possibly miss our wild callings, then not really hear the whispers of our adventure longings, for why we go, and why we do what we do within our wild place wanderings.
So grateful we are all still simply listening..... DSD  

Friday, November 28, 2014

"Of Listening..."

"Two voices are there; one is of the sea, one is of the mountains". Wordsworth
"We climb to hear - whispered in the wind, echoed in the stars - strains of that mysterious music". E. Bernbaum
"I heard nothing except the music that had seemed to accompany me throughout my climb". R. Messner
"On this sun-consumed rock pile, eternity is trying to speak - no, sing to me". R. Schultheis
"Listen... Listen to the songs of the mountains; the songs of the forests and the river... Then listen more closely, for you may see that it is you that has been singing". Grandfather, Mountain Elder

It always seems to be, when now adventuring and wandering, intentionally slowing my steps, I am listening more quietly and closely, for both the meanings of the words within these wonderful quotes, then too for the songs and echoes from so far out in the wild places..... DSD  

Wednesday, November 26, 2014


"If you lie out flat on the stones - it seems odd to try, I know, you will feel - here; that's it - the warmth of the sunlight emanating from the stones. Turn your head to the side, ear to rock, and you will hear the earth revolving on its axis and an adjustment of stones in the riverbed...".  B. Lopez

Monday, November 24, 2014


Now, this is not so much about storm chasing, as it reflects elemental storm questing experiences.
I especially enjoy the intense adventure of it when my intention is to both appreciate, and then to write about, what musings this whole experience sparks.
There is much immediacy, and potency, deep within the midst of a mountain or coastal storm. I haven't met anyone out there who is not both inspired, and yet also feeling a respectful awe, of the power of these darkly, then brightly clashing elements.
I am also a very careful wanderer who watches the weather patterns closely. Who is looking for safety of location as soon as any thunder voices itself, and ensures I am not by any means the tallest object around.
There are no metal hiking poles with me those days, no large single trees or boulders about. Although being close to treeline still does make sense.
The highpoints, outcrops, and overhangs, of the terrain are avoided. The lower points distinctly embraced.
My sleeping pad becomes a cushion I can crouch low upon too, as I tuck myself away when the sky and clouds deeply darken, and the winds begin to endlessly bellow.
When the lighting dims, the music begins, and the energy of it all is then so wonderfully released...
The sights and sounds are like no other.
The inherent inspiration to compose something becomes as momentous.
The blending of it all into both memories, and then words, is an amazing lasting adventure itself.
The little cobblestones I then always discover are truly a gift as well.
Seeking out those elements of thunder and lightning, then wandering, pondering, and composing musings while out there among them - is such a very enlightening experience..... DSD 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

"Farther Meanings..."

"We seek an experience that adds meaning and perspective to our lives... Something that brings more meaning to everyday life... We will also find hardship, both in our wilderness excursions and in our life journeys, and if we don't open ourselves to it we cannot go far in our search for meaning... We may learn to see time, evolution, and life itself with new eyes; we may come to better know ourselves; we may place knowledge and truth in a broader perspective; we may become open to that heightened combination of awareness and aliveness called contemplation, and possibly experience a sudden flash of insight, an epiphany. All have helped me see the boulders in my river of life, and have shown me the surest route to the distant, shining sea... All are trusty guides, and true wilderness companions...". D. Backes

Sunday, November 16, 2014

"Just My Pack And I....."

Such very old friends we are,
Good companions for quite long.
We've shared so many wild experiences,
Within endless days well out there...
We've journeyed far and wide together,
Carrying things for each other.
Me toting these old packs,
Then them carrying me as well...
No one else about this day,
Nothing more needed for our hike.
Just our own company yet once again,
As we begin the trail and the pathways up...
I so enjoy these adventures which we share,
Such moments seem simpler and then more clear.
Nothing technical to be done this time,
Only the essentials will we both carry...
I am always very happy to see again,
These old cherished well worn partners.
Much like their siblings from the past,
Who have become special for me as well...
Such very old friends we are,
Great companions for so long.
One more lovely day out there,
For just my pack and I..... DSD  

Friday, November 14, 2014

"Farther Blue Mountains..."

"The acid test of a true adventurer, if presented with certain anonymity, is whether each of us would still have made the journey beyond the last blue mountain...". M. Clark

"Big Blue Mountain..."

"Big blue mountain spirit,
Away in the home made of blue clouds,
I am grateful for that way of goodness there,
That sets my heart free...".
Aboriginal Saying

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

"Of Remembrance And Freedom....."

"A mountaineer is one who seeks the freedom of the hills, full wilderness citizenship, with all its privileges and rewards, its responsibilities and demands."
The Mountaineers
The freedom of the hills we all love and know,
Echoes with many brave voices now long gone,
So let us pause wherever we are on our shared trails,
To listen quietly in remembrance.......

Monday, November 10, 2014

"That Which Lifts Hope..."

"While seeking the secrets of nature I have watched the salutary effects of stillness and peace on human hearts and minds. I have seen the overpowering beauty of dawns and sunsets reach into troubled breasts and heal hurts that were thought beyond medicine and philosophy. And I have seen those burdened with grief take on the silence of the forest aisles until they could hear that still, small voice which lifts hope and faith with wordless assurance...".  S. Campbell

Sunday, November 09, 2014

"Of Freedoms....."

"Forests are made for weary men,
That they may find their souls again,
And little leaves are hung on trees,
To whisper of old memories,
And trails with cedar shadows black,
Are placed just there to lead men back,
Beyond the pitfalls of it all,
To boyhood, peace, and happiness...".  Mary Carolyn Davies

"When you go home, tell them of us and say, for their tomorrow, we gave all of our today...".  John Maxwell

"All we have of freedom, all we use or know.
This our fathers bought for us.
Long and long ago...".  Rudyard Kipling

Saturday, November 08, 2014

"Of Rememberings..."

"Remember... These great cathedrals of the Earth, with their gates of rock, pavements of cloud, choirs of stream and stone, altars of snow, and vaults of purple traversed by the continual stars." J. Ruskin

Friday, November 07, 2014

"Like Anthems....."

"Through woods and mountain passes.
The winds, like anthems, roll...".   Longfellow

Sunday, November 02, 2014


I am not sure what 'time' and the other elements were doing, but my adventure day back then was unfolding in a wonderfully surreal way...
It was almost as if what we often experience deep within our dreams was playing out upon that mountain.
I noticed that the very early morning valley winds were gusting much faster than usual. The clouds far above were moving by more speedily as well. The way the warming air shifted, and the movements of a few other adventurers on that most often quiet trail, were fast in an unusual way.
Now I know that as we age and grey, that things do seem to move along quicker than we might. But this ephemeral kind of engaging deceleration was unique and very different...
It was like I had touched upon that secret pace. That hidden rhythm of movement. That was not just about a body going forwards and upwards - but was an expression of those depths of unconscious consciousness that we all have more within of, than we ever first realize.
It was so wonderfully surrealistic...
Everything around me was moving or shifting or changing so slightly more speedily. While I seemed to become even slower, distinctly more reposeful, almost anachronistic. It felt as if time's usual sense of rules no longer applied in those lengthening unfolding elemental moments.
The clouds continued to speed up. The breezes gusted further. The nearby waterfalls kept subtly shifting unusually as well. Yet my renewed slowness of movement did not hinder my pace nor my climbing. My vision, perception, breathing, and heartbeat had all found their own natural tempo.
A surreal phenomenon it was.
The elements about me speeding up.
While the elements within me had slowed to such a leisurely, energetically, wonderful place.
I think it was a brief , but forever, meaningful expression if you will. From those depths of subconscious consciousness we all have. In how we are truly meant to blend with the wild places while we wander..... DSD 

Friday, October 31, 2014

"Of Hauntings..."

It is not what some may first think about that which haunts lots of us during the long, sometimes too quiet hours... For many adventurers it is not the darkness and depth of the night that makes us shiver; nor the risks inherent within all adventures which catches our breath at times. Not even the moments of trial and anxieties, and those real tests to one's determination and endurance that shake us on occasion. Fears about the unknown aren't foreboding to such explorers as we. Worries of keeping up or about competition simply are not there anymore for us elders either. The wild places are too welcoming for such wraiths to severely bother those who wander endlessly out there.
What really haunts many of us in those exposed contemplative moments; what truly may keep us up at night sometimes, are not so much these ghostly worries, but more so those ponderings and wonderings of what could have been...
We all have them. Those wishes for what might have been, for what we did not do... Maybe sadness or deep disappointment for dreams not put in motion; and even at times possibly for the loss of the desire to go...
What may in reality haunt many adventurers in those long, quite hours are more the shades of lost moments, unused opportunities, when we may have been distracted by something other than what could have been truly meaningful moments out among the wild places. These are the spirits that may really haunt us if we do not exercise them..... DSD 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

"Nothing More Need Saying....."

"It is only in the intentional silence of vigil and meditation, or in the quiet places of nature, that we encounter the song of the universe. Like the wind... this song echoes along the pathways of the cosmic web; it includes the celestial spinning of the planets, as well as the hum of insects and the dancing song of the grass; it includes the song of all the ancestors and spirits as well as the beating of our own hearts...". C. Mathews

That endless valley, the late time of day, the end of an amazing scramble upon quite an elusive mountain...
Back then, all of this unfolding nexus of experience and emotion, got me to pondering, as I rested by the trailside on my way out.
We all surely share in such moments, I was musing, when so thankfully tired and fulfilled, from a long day out in the wild and high places.
I look up and around. Gaze down towards each end of this valley. As I try to compose in my mind, what all is now being reflected within me.
Then with a flood of memories and feelings. With last light shining on all of the summits surrounding me that I have been up upon. Only a few certain clear words come to mind, as my eyes glisten over:
Nothing more needs saying.
As each of you Dear Friends also know, as we all then wander home, with the quiet setting of the sun..... DSD

Dedicated this adventure day to all of the wonderful wanderers who are linked under my "Giving Back & Passing Forward" section. Please take a few moments to have a look over their amazing sites that reflect their even more engaging efforts.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

"To See..."

"To sit on rocks, to muse...
To slowly trace the forest's shady scene...
To climb the trackless mountain...
To hold converse with nature's charms,
And to see her stores untolled...".  Lord Byron

"Of Fullness..."

"Mountains are to the rest of the body of the earth, what muscular action is to the body of man. The muscles and tendons of its anatomy are, in the mountain, brought out with force and energy, full of expression, passion, and strength...".  J. Ruskin

Sunday, October 19, 2014

"She Knew It Was Me....."

Way back then, I was just finishing a very challenging endeavour, by finally wandering back into the parking area, mid-morning on my last day out...
There was only one other person there. A much younger, energetic, and determined woman who clearly looked like she was just starting out.
I couldn't help but notice the contrasts between us... The same route chosen to adventure upon, yet real differences between us, of finishing & beginning, of older & younger, of tired & energetic, one a bit more experienced, one a novice of sorts, one who wanders and meanders, one who was moving with focused intention, one quite worn by time, and one so full of youth. Even one stooped in bearing, and one standing tall with anticipations.
But, as is the way with most of us adventurers, such contrasts and differences only seem to add to the spice and the great 'mixing in' of connections we usually experience out there.
Having just completed what she was now starting out upon, there were a lot of questions for me, and excited energy about the journey yet ahead. I could see from her fairly new gear, again in contrast to my worn old stuff, and in the way I looked and felt - so dusty and tired; that we were viewing our adventure's from very different waypoints.
Yet in chatting about what was done, and what was yet to be, we shared in that wonderful wild place synergy. That real fun of exchanging information and ideas. Each then gaining as much from the other through sharing energy and perspectives. Even if only within those brief moments.
From contrasts to connections, such is the way within our wild place adventures...
As I drove slowly away, and as I waved with my window down, we each had such great expansive smiles on our faces.
An ending...
A beginning...
Maybe all one and the same...
When she reached down in that moment to pick up her pack and start out, I saw her find the Summit Stone & Adventure Muse, I had placed right there. She looked up in surprise, as I waved again and was on my way.
I'm not sure, my Dear Friends, but I think she knew it was from me..... DSD 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


"Something of our personality has gone into every mountain on which we have spent our strength and on which our thoughts have rested, and something of its personality has come into ours and has its effect on everything that has come within our influence...".  R.L.G. Irving

"The Mountain And I....."

"Flocks of birds have flown high and away.
A solitary drift of cloud, too, has gone wandering on.
And I stand alone with this mountain peak, towering beyond.
We never grow tired of each other, the mountain and I...".  Li Po

Sunday, October 12, 2014


That brief, unfolding, play of light at first.
Then, maybe a gentle sparkle of sunbeams as well.
There is an adventure alchemy to be found out there, within all of the glistening wonders of our long journeys...
There is the shine off the leaves, which are fully reaching out in the spring, as we begin to hike our first trails. Then the breezes make them shiver and then gleam in that ephemeral light too.
Wet grass does this as well, as do the spider webs woven in the air across our trails. Being the first one down that path, means seeing the glimmer of refracted light reflected off of those silken strands.
There are the amazing gems of light from the mixing of the desert sun, upon waters unexpectedly discovered deep within those inviting canyons.
The gleamings of our shared rivers, which shine out when rafting or kayaking them at the very moment of a days sunrise.
I especially enjoy the flashes of magical light through the ocean waves, at those times of day where the sea and the setting sun embrace one another.
I also so appreciate quartz rock, and other such stone, found up high upon a mountain ridge, which emits its' own very special glistenings.
As adventurers we all love the forever glittering stars, peppered way above us, around the shine of a full seasonal moon.
Then, when, blended with our efforts, all of these ornamental elements, will always transform into such enlightened bright memories.
Just look across that glacier your next time out, at the reflections in the sunglasses of your companions too, then also the smiles and tears of joy upon that elusive summit - to discover your own forever glistenings as well my Dear Friends..... DSD

"As With Truth And Dreams..."

"A climber ascends, descends, and traverses... References are lost. Yet the strangeness somehow is a match of the climbers inner existence. The mountain is the color of places the climber knows, and doesn't know, and finds sacred, and can't quite get to, as with truth and with dreams...".  P. Ament

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

"During Any Climb..."

"During any climb we all have to fight those demons lurking on the mountain itself and those inside our minds...".   C. Bonington

"A New Edge..."

"Though the days were few, they seemed to last longer than he had ever known. Time took on a new meaning. Each day, each hour even, was experienced with a new intensity. They really lived, and this gave life a new edge that made his previous existence seem as though he had spent it half asleep...".    Anon

Sunday, October 05, 2014

"Drums In The Distance..."

I think they have always been there.
Possibly even from before my Outward Bound experiences those many years ago.
These 'drums in the distance'...
Drumming has always been a very moving music for me to listen closely to. Those endless varied beats reflect our pulse it seems, the rhythms our pacing, and its' engagement our excitement.
So when I dream, ponder, and muse; then especially as I train, plan, and prepare - I often hear them building. These resounding drums in the distance.
The farther we go, the more clear they begin to feel.
The higher we climb, the more they resonate so strongly.
The longer distance we cover, the more distinct this music evolves.
The harder the experience we endure, the more pronounced the moving memories become.
I know I am not the only one who has sensed them..
There are many others who nod their heads, and slowly smile, when we quietly discuss hearing such music amidst our shared inspirations.
These drums in the distance echo off the highest mountains, within those endless ocean waves, from across the tallest desert towers and deepest canyon walls, even from beyond the farthest northern lakes.
These distant drums particularly resound from the long awaited anticipations, the real excitements, the epiphanies & wonders, and the unfolding awe we experience when beginning, and then enjoying, our journeys far out there.
The pulsing is really an inner music we know. The beat reverberating from our own hearts and songs.
But they are always there.
Never really silent.
Those slowly building, powerfully resonating, rhythmically feeling, forever echoing - our drums in the distance..... DSD

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

"Your Wild Spirit..."

"Create your wild spirit and then be true to this... You are a Storm Rider with the soul of a Trail Dancer...". Grandfather, Mountain Elder