Wednesday, August 31, 2016

"Just Saying A Sincere Thank You Once More..."

Thank you once more my Friends for allowing your so wonderful inspiring images to be shared here!
My intention with including such images & pictures of beauty and awe, is in support of all the links on my blog under 'Giving Back & Passing Forward'. 
There will never be anything commercial about these musings. 
I have always acknowledged that the vast majority of the images shared here were not created by me, as I am not talented in that way. Many have been sent to me or have been suggestions provided by fellow adventurers, so I am unable many times to give specific acknowledgements unfortunately. In my enthusiasm about your artistry I can also be forgetful when saving them, to record their origin at that time.
If I can make amends for this it will always occur as best I can right when such images are posted. 
I promise that I will also certainly acknowledge others work if you let me know as well, and then I will immediately attribute creative efforts where they clearly belong. 
It is with deep appreciation that your sharing images in this way is felt in support of those who are Adventuring For Another Reason . My whole adventure blog speaks to these initiatives.
You have such amazing pictures, and resonating metaphors within them, reflecting these links who give back and pass forward with their ongoing enduring efforts. 
Please forgive my grey haired forgetfulness in not always following proper internet protocol when it comes to such things. I am a late bloomer in the blogging and social media worlds.
Please also accept my sincere gratitude for your sharing and understanding in allowing for such support of the links here.
Thank you all so very, very much!      DSD      

"If We Hadn't Journeyed..."

We wouldn't really be just here,
If we hadn't long journeyed way out there.
We would not have known this,
If we had not experienced all of that.
We could not share in these beautiful things,
If we hadn't adventured in such amazing ways.
We chose to walk over those testing coals,
Then to traverse these many trials and trails...
We wouldn't feel as intensely and so much,
If we did not ponder things so very far.
We would not grasp for those ephemeral heights,
If we didn't understand the contrast of those often dark depths.
The efforts and choices continue to be made right here,
Created by such wonders and gifts from way out there.
Adventures of contrasts and for seeking truths.
Adventures of paradoxes and enlightening perceptions.
Adventures of mysteries and musings await.
Adventures of wonders and cherished memories as well.
We would never have had them just here,
If we hadn't long journeyed so far way out there..... DSD 

Dedicated this adventure day to those hardy wanderers who "Adventure For Another Reason'.  

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

"A Simple Scar..."

There are many kinds of scars we bear. 
Some cannot be seen and heal so slowly. 
Others adorn the body and are worn proudly as any award or medal for our efforts.
There is a northern Rockies mountain, that has not one, but three unique and separate summits. each of which holds out its own challenges in style and their difficulty for climbing. 
While scrambling all three is possible, each also has their own technical routes that have been developed slowly over the years. 
Those who first ascended these summits, usually carry scars of various types as memento's.
Some are upon fingers, even elbows, a few written upon legs, even faces.
There seems to be an old tradition of sorts, in the bonding of blood and sweat and rock at altitude in our journeys up there.
On this particular summit, out on a day of a past summer solstice, I was finding the nature of that exposed rock to be quite unique, with its sharp and pointed edges, with a mix of fossils among them. 
I remember them well when I feel for the scar on my leg where that jagged edge tore through my pants.
I didn't feel nor notice exactly when the gash occurred and there was no time to stop anyway. It opened and closed a number of times throughout the day, as I added a bit of myself to the colors of that bright rock face. 
It was a challenging, rewarding, very long summit solstice day.
I fondly recall gathering and placing a few selected stones at the summit cairn, yet my more personal memento was the scar which was to later form on my lower leg. 
I'm not sure exactly why I cherish it so, especially as it was likely caused by inattention, yet it reminds me of so many things... 
Of friendship, being out under the sun, of rock and warm breezes, about losing oneself within effort, and those feelings we all have out there don't we Dear Friends, of emotions so intense and heightened that they can make us smile so many years later.
Over a simple scar.....  DSD   

Saturday, August 27, 2016

"Most Proud..."

“The pessimist resembles a man who observes with fear and sadness that his wall calendar, from which he daily tears a sheet, grows thinner with each passing day. On the other hand, the person who attacks the problems of life actively is like a man who removes each successive leaf from his calendar and files it neatly and carefully away with its predecessors, after first having jotted down a few diary notes on the back. He can reflect with pride and joy on all the richness set down in these notes, on all the life he has already lived to the fullest. What will it matter to him if he notices that he is growing old? Has he any reason to envy the young people whom he sees, or wax nostalgic over his own lost youth? What reasons has he to envy a young person? For the possibilities that a young person has, the future which is in store for him?
No, thank you,' he will think. 'Instead of possibilities, I have realities in my past, not only the reality of work done and of love loved, but of sufferings bravely suffered. These sufferings are even the things of which I am most proud...".   V.E. Frankl 

"In Perspective..."

"A great man is always willing to be little...".   R. W. Emerson

Thursday, August 25, 2016

"A Different Height..."

In early Fall, a few seasons back, on another solo traverse of Mt Edith's three summits, I was on my way out late in the day. It was then I was to enjoy a unique experience when meeting two other mountaineers. They seemed very tired, yet very content. They were moving quite slowly and also in a quiet manner.
We were to share the next few hours on the trail together; talking when it felt right; passing snacks back and forth; each of us reflecting upon our own adventure experiences just passed. I sensed that theirs had been a much greater challenge than mine that summit day.
They stopped and looked back on occasion; I believe it was to catch the last glimpses of the mountain which had just tested them. Finally, I asked, "Was it Mt Louis", and then they just smiled.
Great big, full, meaningful, tired smiles that told the rest of their story as few words can...
"I know...", I said, as I had touched the stone of Mt Louis some years ago.
And I did 'know' as Louis is a distinct wild place, so memorable for any adventurer who has chosen to embrace the rock there.
They shared a bit more about the route taken, the exposure, that so small summit, and the challenging descent. What they mused more about though was what I leaned forward to more closely listen to.
Their day had started with the energy and ego and confidence we all display at times out there - things that can carry us forward and through the trials, yet can also be occasionally, paradoxically limiting at the same time.
Their day had ended on a different height... 
While clearly enjoying their accomplishment, the tone of their voices changed and the substance of their words did too, as they shared further.
There was no pretense at all, only a more modest account that mirrored an experience of being humbled.
A part of them had moved past any ego or bravado, now too there was a deeper respect for the mountain, for the ones who first bravely ascended that route; also a shared feeling of companionship with all others who have gone up that so distinctly vertical rock face.
There is a secret strength to be found in being humbled in our adventures.
When paired with our success and the confidence our elusive wild place objectives allow us to create, such earned humbleness gives us clearer perspectives; even allows more connectedness, and like certain precious metals, we go through a higher level of tempering.
What remains is significantly more enduring.
These two quiet climbers had indeed attained their adventure summit that day, yet what they found out there had impacted them more deeply and was worth so much more.....  DSD

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

"Even Then..."

"On the highest throne of the world, we still sit only on our own bottom...".   M. De Montaigne

"Lingering Lessons..."

"Life is a long lesson in Humility...".   J.M. Barrie

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

"Adventuring Nobility..."

"There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self...".   E. Hemingway

"Of Seeing Further..."

"If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants...".  Sir Isaac Newton

Monday, August 22, 2016

"Dream Arches..."

"Dream arch shimmers in storm clouds.
A bridge between heaven and earth it is said.
Yet its entrance is hard to find...".  D. Ming-Dao

We glimpse them. We know they are truly there.
So we continue to adventure and wander to seek them out.
Then, as we do, and when we finally rest.
We discover that our rainbows, now have found each of us... DSD 

Sunday, August 21, 2016

"Rainbows 'Mixed In' For You Dear Finders, Dear Friends..."

This has become such a unique adventure in itself over these long years...
There have been so many wild places I have gathered up these little polished cobbles. So many techniques learned among endless lessons, to then splash a bit of paint upon them, in a Naive Artistic way, to try and make them into touchstones of sorts.
Now these last many years I have found myself chasing rainbows too, and smiling as I realize that, and then trying to sense how to 'mix in' those wonderful experiences into these Summit Stones created afterwards.
Discovering the endless kinds of rainbows out there is a very special part of our adventure experiences. One that often marks powerful moments, emotions, and meanings.
Rainbows are a unique combination of the elements in their composition, structure, color, and how long they endure. 
There are many tales and legends about the meanings to be found among such natural artistry. Then even more mystery may be revealed within them too, we all sense at certain times within our wanderings.
Over many seasons I have gathered up selected stones, water, crystals, sand, and other elemental substances, found at the 'end of a rainbow'. 
Many times after a storm out among distant coastal islands, as the rain came and went ,creating one beach rainbow after another. 
Also when hiking to an endless number of hidden waterfalls, with the countless rainbows found within their mists, created in the early mornings there.
Then too on many elusive summit experiences, among the comings and goings of unsettled weather, where double rainbows appear, which illuminated the rocks up there with the shifting and changing of the colors and light.
All of which now has been 'mixed in' as best I can, so hopefully you can feel it too, in the little Summit Stone now in your hand Dear Friends.....DSD     

Saturday, August 20, 2016

"Back In The Day Interview By Clayton Kessler..."

Just recalling... Thanks Clayton.

Mystery,  magic, peace and awe of the great outdoors is realized in the DSD’s writing. Here is a quote from Summit Stones and Adventure Musings Blog, “It’s not about escaping from something back here, its more about working it out by embracing the wonderful elements and rainbows out there…”
In adittion to informative and thought provoking commentaries about the outdoors from an outdoor expert, DSD Stones, has a fantastic collection of outdoor blog links that are full of unique outdor information.
“Today, I hold a single rock in my hand, from such a circle, remembering one meaning from within a thousand… Now, I think I will splash just a little bit of paint upon this stone, and place it somewhere special just for you…”

Summit Stones
Relax, reflect and enjoy DSD’s interview below.
How and where were you introduced to the outdoors?
My earliest experiences about the outdoors, our wonderful wild places, and the adventures we may have out there, were through the engaging literature that is available to us all. I read so much about climbing, hiking, kayaking, canyoneering, and exploring when I was very young. Very exciting stuff! In later years I headed out with family and friends to many of our northern lakes to learn the art of canoeing and camping. After that came years of hiking with fellow adventurers, courses with Outward Bound, and especially great experiences with backcountry Guides, Mountaineering & Climbing Guides, among others. There is nothing like being out on such journeys with an experienced mentor who can share not just about outddoor skills, but also so much about what it ‘means’ to be out there, and the value of those perceptions and memories such can have for the rest of our lives. Now I continue to be introduced to new things about the wild places through the amazing websites now available and time out with young folks whose energy is great to be around.
What has been your favourite outdoor recreations area?
This is a challenging question… Propably my favourite wild place is the one I am in at that very moment… Then there is the adventure activity that I am engaged in within that place. I would have said in the past that the Rocky Mountains were my very favourite, and they still are for certain kinds of climbing, hiking, and solo time away. But it is hard to say that any other outdoor area, such as our northern lakes, our coastal islands, or the deep canyons of the desert are any less meaningful as they are so very different and unique in what they offer to us… Places like Yosemite have made powerful impressions upon me too. Each has such vivid meanings and memories. There has not been a single wild place we have journeyed to over the decades that has not provided us with such gifts… This is likely one of the distinct reasons I believe so strongly in Stewardship, in giving back, and passing forward regarding these vulnerable areas for others to also experience. Maybe… I might say that my favourite wild places these days are the ones I’ve yet to wander in… the ones I now dream about visiting, the ones I so enjoy reading about, checking out the maps, looking over the websites on, and looking forward to about the fellow adventurers whom I’ve yet to meet out there… Such anticipations are priceless too…
Please share an outdoor story related to one of the above areas.
My whole blog on ‘Adventure Musings‘ is about sharing such experiences. I hardly ever talk about the skills needed to wander, except maybe the ones that have to do with the psychology behind why we do what we do out there, and that which has to do with the inspiration, motivation and spirit that are the essential elements of any adventure… One kind of story I could share, has to do with my affinity for visiting the same wild place in all the seasons. I find this to be a very exciting way to wander and have done so in the mountains, the desert, and to many coastal islands. When way up north, this can such a wonderful way to experience a northern lake. Each and every season offers gifts of variety and unique perceptions. One mountain out here near Lake Louise I have hiked all the way around mid-summer, climbed most of its’ routes in early fall, been on snowshoes near for long winter days, and then hiked again when spring was just emerging. That mountain and I have become great friends…
Have you ever experienced a wilderness medical emergency or been lost in the wilderness? If so please describe this adventure and any lessons learned.
I have learned that preparation is everything when out there… Over the years we have experienced everything from being underprepared physically, in not having enough water or food, not carrying the appropriate medical gear – as every wild place can have its own kind of medical emergency, in not being prepared for the navigational challenges that would be needed, and in underestimating what kind of preparation may be asked of us mentally and emotionally… The last two seem to be the most important. Handling adversity out there is not just about understanding the weather or the altitude or an injury, it is also as much about the way we train ourselves to handle these things before they actually occur… If we each journey out there often and long enough, every one of us will likely look back and shake our heads about what we see now that might have happened, and how we were probably not as prepared as we could have been.
I am a bit cautious with technology too. Nothing wrong with carrying a GPS, and I often do, but making sure we know how to do a resection with a compass for example can be invaluable as well.
No time in preparation is lost, but we might be if we do not have in place the knowledge, skills, abilities, and especially the hardiness to respond to such emergencies. One of the best reasons then to head out with experienced persons who can teach each of us about potential mistakes that can be made, and share their wisdom about how such mistakes may instead be opportunities for developing our own earned wisdom for safe and fun adventuring…
Can you share any unique encounters with wild animals?
I often post about this on my blog ‘Adventure Musings’ as well. Experiences with the wild ones themselves are often fundamental reasons why many of us adventure in the first place. These can be elusive, yet powerful and meaningful encounters… I have enjoyed immensely touching moments with wolves and whales, ravens and mountain sheep, among others. The notes from my journals have many memories of these. I think we often hope to not only experience this but also then to develop our own understanding of the symbolism that such encounters may mean to each of us…
If not previously mentioned, have you ever completed a thru-hike or multi-day backpacking trip and what nuggets of wisdom did you glean from it?
While much may be gleaned from day trips, being out for lengthy time periods allows for unique perceptions and experiences. Time becomes very relative, the pace and rythym of everything changes, priorities and how we orgainize oureselves changes, moments become something else… Be it out with a pack or in a kayak, we may learn some very interesting things about ourselves, our companions, and the especially the wild places when we wander for a longer time out there… A friend once wrote, “Going out is a way of going within”… and time can be an important element of that…
What is your favourite outdoor website?
I would have to say that the links I have on my blog are all my favourites. There are many there that are profoundly inspirational, distinctly informational, and so many that provide such wonderful connections with fellow adventurers. Each is very unique and I have tried to be quite selective as to including ones that seem to provide real adventure purpose and meaning in what they present.
What is your favourite outdoor hiking gear store?
Years ago, and I’m dating myself here, it would have been Early Winters. I also like the local specialty shops that have many unique items we may want for caving, climbing, canyoneering, or for journeying out on the water,
I am always on the lookout for new and innovative gear. Many of us who wander become ‘collectors’ if you will. The fun of discovering a new peice of gear and imagining where & when we might utilize it can be an adventure in itself.
Nowadays, I would say MEC, REI, TaigaWorks, Cabella’s, LLBean, and Sierrra Trading Post have all been great resources for whatever we might need.

"Our Vision..."

"We climb upon our vision of ourselves...".   O. Marden
To dream, to envision, then to wander.
Has there ever been as many opportunities for adventure..... DSD

Friday, August 19, 2016

"The Smallest Things..."

"Sometimes, said Pooh, The smallest things take up the most room in your heart...".  A.A. Milne


"For Fur, Feathers, And Fins Friday's..."

"Some people talk with animals.
Not many listen though...
That's the problem...".  A.A.Milne

Thursday, August 18, 2016

"Farther Criteria For Success..."

"The spirit of the experience is what hangs in delicate balance... Success... might not be judged by whether someone reaches the summit. It should be judged by whether or not the time spent on the mountain upgraded the mountains beauty - rather than degraded it. A mountain's beauty is 'upgraded' by virtue of the spirit that is infused into its slopes by those who pass near it... The word is replenish, to give back. If we hope to draw into our spirits the beauty... we must return to it whatever is, or should be, some of the beauty that hangs from the edges of our souls. The inner feelings and ideas of those who visit the area are what is left there... Sometimes those attitudes and spirits are every bit as much garbage as piles of discarded oxygen bottles... The criteria for success should be measured by whether the experience has been one of integrity, pristine awareness, and love for one another and the mountains...".     P. Ament

"In The Long Run..."

“Don't aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one's personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one's surrender to a person other than oneself. Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. Then you will live to see that in the long-run—in the long-run, I say!—success will follow you precisely because you had forgotten to think about it”.   V. Frankl

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

"Our Shared Compass Points..."

Standing on that high summit I focused on my position, ensured I knew and sensed where the edges where, and then gazed out, one at a time - upon the four points of the compass.
In the North I could just make out, encased in clouds, a mountain climbed decades ago with a friend no longer present. It was a summit of the past but one that has never let go of us, such a challenge it was.
I turn and in the West I could not make out a coastline yet could envision it in my mind, and feel the motions of my kayak, the sensations of the paddle, and the gentle rolling of the waves.
I turn again, and to the South flows one of the rivers I admire out here. They are the veins and life blood of the land. Inviting in their energy; demanding respect for their power, allowing us to touch them by kayak, canoe, or raft.
I pause for a moment to muse how we all have such points of the compass in our own adventures and life... 
They point out from us yet reflect the desires, inspirations, and memories within us.
Then I turn once again, and in the East, I spend more time gazing, upon looking, within wondering, as I could just make out the course of a future trail yet to be taken. It will be a long journey of another kind. 
Along that point of the compass.....  DSD  

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

"To Intently Wander..."

Oh, to plan and ponder, then to also intently wander.
What will these seasons gently bring.
What gifts will be discovered way out there.
Who will we then meet upon our trails.
Whom will we honour with our efforts...
Oh, to plan and ponder, then when also far to wander.
Among the valleys and mountains of our dreams.
Along those coastlines reflecting of our visions.
Through the distant deserts and canyons too.
Such amazing adventurous embracing quests we will surely find...
Oh, to plan and ponder, then to stand in awe and wonder.
Upon an elusive summit up so very high.
Shared with you yet once again.
The dream now become so real.
Among ancient inspiring rock, snow, and ice...
Oh, to plan and ponder.
Forever moments for us to endlessly wander..... DSD  

Dedicated this adventure season to all those wonderful wanderers who are Adventuring For Another Reason... 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

"Musings That Always Linger..."

We all have our own mountains to climb and our own 'summits' to achieve. Our quest for these 'summits' is as important as attaining them... The arduousness of our quest is part of how we come to understand our motivation. Creating and recreating our own enthusiasm and motivation is the very essence of adventure experiences. There are many kinds of 'summits' and many 'adventure ways'. When we push our own limits at a level, and in an activity, that is right for each of us, with a focus on safety and especially fun; we journey along paths of freedom, happiness, beauty, and truth. The 'path' could be up a mountain, along a coastline, down a river or canyon, along a trail or ridge line, under the earth, across a lake or ocean, through any wilderness. The 'means' could be by going solo or in a group, with boots, runners, rope, crampons, bike, ski, snowshoe, kayak, canoe, raft, or... Achievement is determined by our own efforts and not just results. How will you arrange the elements in your life? What will your next 'adventure summit' be?   DSD  

"Broken Pebbles..."

"Having nothing to offer but broken pebbles, I have nevertheless tried to express myself with sincerity..."

"All Told..."

"For every place that we've visited there are dozens more where we would like to go. Every map or chart depicting our meandering coastline draws us in, leading us to ask what's down this stretch of coast, what can be found paddling into this estuary, up this inlet. And then there are the places that we have visited, the places we swore we would return to: bays with untouched beaches, abandoned villages with their ceremonial poles, the jagged cut of untouched rocky coastlines. All told, a true paddler's paradise, inviting us back and compelling us onward...".  G. Rasmussen

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

"Ever On And On..."

“The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say”    JRR Tolkien

"From Memories..."

"Eastward the dawn rose, ridge behind ridge into the morning, and vanished out of eyesight... it was no more than a glimmer blending with the hem of the sky, but it spoke to them, out of memory, and old tales, of the high and distant mountains."    JRR  Tolkien

"Companions Among Snow & Stone..."

"We journey far and farther.
Then become friends with the winds.
Companions among all that stone.
Yet it was within the mountains we began to share in spirit...".  JRR Tolkien

"A Tolkien Treasure..."

"Not all those who wander are lost...".   JRR Tolkien

Sunday, August 07, 2016

"To Wander Is To Be Alive..."

"Wandering is the activity of the child, the passion of the genius; it is the discovery of the self, the discovery of the outside world, and the learning of how the self is both 'at one with' and 'separate from' the outside world. These discoveries are as fundamental to the soul as 'learning to survive' is fundamental to the body. These discoveries are essential to realizing what it means to be human. To wander is to be alive...".     R. Payne

"Gathering Explorations..."

"In wisdom gathered over time I have found that every experience is a form of exploration...".          A. Adams

"Our Tonic..."

"We need the tonic of wildness... At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us... We can never have enough of nature...".  H.D. Thoreau

Saturday, August 06, 2016

"J.K.M. August 2015..."

I wanted to share again a Poem that Jonathan M., 'cobbled together' that reflects many of our shared experiences from out wandering in the wild places:
"Once again, I have failed..."
I have failed once again
to make the summer days last
I have fallen miserably short
of preserving the garden
in a freshly mowed, trimmed
and manicured condition.
That lush fragrance
of orderly satisfied green shades
lingers – suspended
in the evening air -
just so long.
I have failed to halt
the ripening saskatoons
on their whiskey branches
or to hold their exuberant flavor
in my startled mouth.
I was unable to enfold
my dearest family and friends
in an everlasting embrace.
I could no more accomplish this
than I could disguise myself
from their recognition.
I could not cling to the final
resonant reverberations of our music
before they faded into perfect
I was unable to linger
any longer on the rocky ridges
the mountain pinnacles
the shadowed valleys
nor the starlit meadows
dashed with meteoric streaks.
I could not tolerate
the stinging iciness
of cascading mountain streams
any longer.
I did not retain
the pair of gangly deer
with their unusual coloration
in my gaze long enough
to learn their names.
I have failed
to preserve
the diamond bright sparkle
in the eyes of my grandson.
Or to capture his dancing
joyful motion by some device
to be carried in the palm
of my hand.
I could not stare endlessly
into the dancing flames
of firelight.
Or linger forever
on the mysterious drama
played out in the
glowing embers.
I could not prevent his
from blowing
in the gentlest of Summer’s
sighing breeze.
Once again
I have utterly failed.
Failed to squeeze
to cajole
to in any way elicit
even one additional tick
from the relentless
unblinking clock.
I have failed to grasp
one solitary grain
of Summer’s Sands.
They have all trickled
through the gaps
in the fan
of my out splayed
imploring fingers.
Yet… . . . . . . .
I have examined a few
in their exquisite
minute detail
as they tumbled by.
JKM  August 2015
Thank you my Friend for sharing in the passing forward of so many smiles over these long wonderful seasons and years..... DSD 

"Lingering Longer..."

A long ways back, after often finding myself the last one up, I slowly began learning of the wonderful moments to be discovered in also being the last one off, or the last one down, even the last one to launch depending on the kind of adventure day. 
Here was the experience, the natural lessons, when learning to linger out there...
Like within those special minutes when we put off the departure of our sea kayaks from finally leaving those secluded distant coastal islands.
Many of us also want to drag out those cherished moments upon an elusive summit, as so much has been given to get us up there.
The protracted time in a desert canyon becomes precious beyond words too, so we stay as long as we can amidst the eternities present there.
It all seems so natural. We can't wait to get out there, and are also then reluctant to come back. Kind of as I find myself moving even more slowly at the end of an adventure day, not only because of my age and an earned tiredness, but much more so as I don't want to leave that wild place just yet...
I want to grasp, and embrace more closely, all the lingering perceptions and emotions that have been gifted to us on our journeys.
For such determined, disciplined, and goal oriented adventurers that we all can be at times - there is such a positive tardiness we can also practice too. We are so wonderfully, naturally, paradoxical at times aren't we my Friends..... DSD 
Thank you once more for sharing your timeless images my Friends.
Dedicated this adventure day to all those who are Adventuring For Another Reason this season.

"To The Moment..."

"If the whole world I once could see,
On free soil stand, with the people free,
Then to the moment might I say,
Linger awhile,,, so fair thou art...".   J. Wolfgang von Geothe

Friday, August 05, 2016

"Sublime Depths..."

"It was in the sublime depths of this stony domain that ancient canyon dwellers, explorers, surveyors, and river runners helped define the modern concept of canyoneering. And it was from this canyon realm that I gleaned lessons and perspectives...". J. Annerino

Gazing, always gazing, forward towards further, forever moments, out among those endless canyons... DSD  

"For Fur, Feathers, And Fins Friday's..."

"Everything in the world has a hidden meaning... Men, animals, trees, stars, are all a kind of hieroglyph. When you see them you may not understand them. You think they are really men, animals, trees, stars. It is only years later that you truly understand...". N. Kazantzakis

That we begin to understand at all is amazing and so wonderful... DSD

Thursday, August 04, 2016

"A Whole Different Kind Of Responsibility..."

I remember, there was this one Instructor from my first Outward Bound course, who was something of a wandering enigma.
It was a challenging course, with much inclement weather of cold, wind, and rain.
Long days out, among people who were slow to connect.
We didn't make our first summit attempt either.
This Outward Bound mentor had a unique style. One of quiet confidence. A person who chose their words carefully, and often unexpectedly laughed loudly.
One comment in particular sparked a mystery that lasted throughout the course and lingers still.
During a day of rock climbing, one phrase was quietly said a number of times, almost so quietly as to see if we were really listening.
One of us in the patrol was having real difficulty, then real success, with the climbing. After each experience, and the resulting group feedback, all this Instructor said was 'Mea Culpa'.
That simple comment prompted much discussion, both then, later over meals, and at night under the stars.
That Outward Bound mentor whispered that same phrase a few dozen more times throughout our course.
What was also espoused as many times were comments about 'not telling us, but showing'. Then 'not showing', but 'letting us do'. 'Not explaining' but 'allowing us to experience'. 'Not giving us meaning' but ensuring that the circumstances let us 'create our own'.
During each further such experience we would again hear that quiet comment as well; 'Mea Culpa', and would also come to expect it, even while we didn't know exactly what was meant.
I have since come to understand a bit more about experiential learning within the wild places.
During that course and in communications after with my course mates, we would discuss, even research, those two softly spoken words.
The popular Latin meaning typically reflects implied aspects about personal 'fault'; much other literature emphasizes the nature of individual responsibility instead of fault.
Our Outward Bound Instructor's meaning was demonstrated by the many teachings passed forward to us.
This was a gentler 'Mea Culpa'. One of lessons reflecting a more useful personal accountability, and not one just of blame.
Those experiential Outward Bound learnings taught us about such responsibility without criticism; about natural consequences; about creating one's own enthusiasms and motivation; and how to then personally integrate such wild place adventure experiences back within each of our everyday lives.
Over the course of my life I have mused over these two words, that simple phrase, and realized how profound it is.
That Outward Bound mentor never did define what Mea Culpa meant, instead the intention was to let each of us be responsible for creating our own personal meanings, memories, images, and values to live by.
I have always been grateful for that...
So on your next summit day; during your own kayak trip; or when the sun is setting on that canyon., ponder, then say it aloud - and discover a "Mea Culpa' moment for yourself...  DSD 

Dedicated this adventure day to those wonderful 'Partners In Placing'who share in the smiles all along the way.  

"Your Adventures Are Art...".

"Your art is what you do when no one can tell you exactly how to do it.
Your art is the act of taking personal responsibility, challenging the status quo, and changing people...".     S. Godin

"Keep Going..."

"There are no shortcuts to any place worth going...".   B. Sills

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

"Experiences Awaiting You..."

Whatever that wild place goal. 
However you define that adventure project out there. 
That 'summit' is quietly awaiting you.
It knows you are pondering its beauty and the many challenges too. It patiently and quietly calls to you in your thoughts, through your dreams, and among those images that resonate deeply inside of you. 
This elusive goal, that 'adventure summit' has become one of your callings. 
It is a call for new experiences, a call towards a long journey, a calling that will fulfill a longing...
Your 'summit' experience awaits patiently for you, as you expand your awareness of what is possible out there, as you begin your adventure plans and preparations, and especially as your enthusiasm and desires reach out towards it.
Some say as we become focused like this, we also develop a mystical connection between ourselves and the experiences we dream about. I also believe your 'summit experience' can sense your keenness; just as you do its' presence.
There is a karma, a sharing here, that is both powerful and predictive.
Your 'summit' quietly and excitedly awaits as you will always take something to that adventure, just as the experience will always share something with you to bring back home.
No matter how you define your adventure 'summits', no matter what choice that may be - be it mountain, ocean, canyon, northern lake, or other adventure experience.
It is most surely, yet quietly, awaiting you.....   DSD