Sunday, December 31, 2017

"Happy New Years..."

A very happy New Years to you all!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

"A Very Happy Holidays To You All My Friends..."

"My beloved is the mountains, and lonely wooded valleys, strange islands, and resounding rivers, the whistling of love stirred breezes, the tranquil night, at the time of rising dawn, silent music, sounding solitude..." St. John
A very happy holidays to you all my Friends! I am in from some quiet wandering and wanting to express my appreciation to all of you Fellow Placers who shared Summit Stones this year, to Blogger for supporting such a wonderful way for all of us to connect, and especially to the amazing adventurers who 'Adventured For Another Reason' these seasons. 
We have all shared in such a special year of wandering the wild places.
Now choose your present Dear Friends, as it is waiting for you out there someplace, as you dream and envision the horizons yet to be... The very best to you all! 

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

"Later Adventure Year Lingerings..."

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.

Monday, December 18, 2017

"Untold Treasures..."

"We must not fall into the trap of waiting so long
for the big things,
that we let numerous small chances slip right by us.
if we would lower our sights a bit,
we would see all the beautiful oppotunities
swirling at our feet.
If we would but humble ourselves
enough to bend down,
we could scoop up untold treasures,
into our hands...".
Deng Ming-Dao

Sunday, December 17, 2017

"A Farther Kind Of Gift..."

P. Stoltz & E. Weihenmayer said of some gifts: "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 gifts of purpose."

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

"Simply Profound Appreciations..."

makes immortal,
all that is best and beautiful.
It also exalts the true beauty of that which is beautiful.
It strips the veil of familiarity,
from the world,
and lays bare and naked sleeping beauty,
which is in the spirit of the forms of appreciation..."
P.B. Shelley

Sunday, December 10, 2017

"New Ways..."

"Our destination is never a place, but rather a new way of looking at things...".
 H. Miller

Thursday, December 07, 2017

"So Many Ways To Share And Give..."

"A wise woman who was travelling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream. 
The next day she met another traveler who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food. The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him. 
She did so without hesitation. 
The traveler left, rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime. 
But a few days later he came back to return the stone to the wise woman. 
'I've been thinking', he said, 'I know how valuable the stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious. 
Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me the stone'...". 

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

"No Matter How Small..."

"Acts of kindness:
A random act of kindness,
no matter how small,
can make a tremendous impact on someone else's life...".
Roy T. Bennet

Monday, December 04, 2017

"Giving And Gathering..."

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

Saturday, December 02, 2017

"We Who Adventure..."

We who adventure.
We seek and we quest, we wander and we journey.
So very far, up so high, for long enduring awe filled days.
Then we each seem to discover, the forever moments far beyond the elements, within our adventures way, way out there.
These, then, also become wonderous treasures within...
To be truly among the elements, is to become elemental ourselves.
To be as...
Resilient as stone and rock.
Enduring as the endless ocean waves.
Forever committed as the sun.
Persistent as all the winds.
To be as...
Wise and knowing as desert canyons.
Eternally strong as the glacial ice.
Quietly reflective as our campfires.
Lively energetic as the wild ones.
To be as...
Flexible as any winding river.
As far seeing as our chosen mountain summit.
Open and welcoming as a coastal island.
Sustaining as our northern lakes.
To be as...
Beautifully enlightened as the flickering stars.
Forever sharing as the revealing moonlight.
And as giving as the essence discovered within each and every wild place..... DSD 

Dedicated to you all my Dear wandering Friends, and to my so appreciated Partners In Placing who pass forward many smiles along the way.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

"A So Wonderful Musing..."

What would I have done without you...
Now, this is a pondering that I have often so intensely wondered about: what on earth would I have done without all of these adventures.
You glorious mountains and your elusive summits, with those cherished challenges, and endless subtle secrets that you have shared.
You memorable meandering rivers and northern lakes, reflecting all of what you have so generously given back, in proportion to our efforts to learn your ways.
You silently beautiful canyons, and those wondrous desert towers, with your contrasts, connections, and ancient stories about time and harmony.
You vast valleys and deep dark forests, with your slow, deliberate sharing of such natural power and mystery, from so far out there - only to then return me to the place I began, while teaching us all how to also finally then discover such magic back here as well.
It is very hard to imagine, what I would have done without Outward Bound, and the courses they set me upon of so many life directions those long years ago, when really, truly, introducing the wild places to one very young back then.
It is even more difficult to envision what would I have done without all that hard earned knowledge, shared with me by so many - the countless ways and means of navigating both the trails out there, and also those internal ones of our lives too.
What on earth would I have done without all of you elements, over these many decades, in the midst of my own trials of health and life, along with those forever cherished connections you also gave, in our close fellow adventurers as companions and friends.
Gratefulness is a concept we wanderers all deeply sense.
Gratitude is an experience that lingers longer than many others.
Thank you so very much, for what would I have done without you.....DSD  

Monday, November 27, 2017

"Untold Treasures..."

"It is from the small things that the larger events of life are composed.
You may be capable of great things, but life consists of small things.
We must not fall into the trap of waiting so long for the big things, that we let numerous small chances slip right by us.
If we would look at this differently, we would see all the beautiful opportunities swirling at our feet.
If we would humble ourselves enough to bend down, we could scoop up untold treasures into our hands...".   D. Ming-Dao

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

"Our Own Mountains To Climb..."

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  

Sunday, November 19, 2017

"An Old Friend..."

"As I look for the route, a silhouette descends the skyline. A grey figure, quiet as memory, settles on a large block, pulls his ropes, then notices me... The climber wore an old style of clothing, I think, or was that the effect of dimming clouds...".  J. Auld

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

"So Many Years Of 'Mixing In'....."

It is not a well known practice within the ages old lore of painting, yet it is though an especially endearing and timeless tradition among some artists. 
One that I have learned over time to so appreciate. There is such a process of trial and error to it. 
It begins with the selection of just the right paints, and is then blended only with certain other elements. 
But though the results may not be apparent, the hidden meanings of these mediums feel so very profound.
This is the practice, the painters slow artistry and discipline of 'mixing in'. Where select very small amounts of silt or earth, tiny particles of desert or coastal sand, maybe bits of crumbled leaves, possibly ash or charcoal from old campfires, even pure rain or ocean waters, or the strands of some wild ones' fur - among other unique elements, are gathered from chosen wild places, and other power places. 
Then they are very carefully mixed in with these paints. This technique makes the paint come alive; with a brush that takes to this blending, and is then applied so slowly in swirls and layers and coatings.
Within my own naive renditions of mountain ranges, forests, waters, sky's, and fires are often found such mixings. They then become an elemental part of these Summit Stones that I am sure the Finders can sense when they are held closely.....  DSD  

Monday, November 13, 2017

"Of Expressions..."

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

Friday, November 10, 2017

"We Have Our Tomorrow Because Of What They Gave..."

"Politics can be messy.
Democracy may have its flaws.
Freedom is not free.
Many have paid for this with their lives.
Yet it is better for all than what has been before...".  Winston Churchill

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

"On the other side of every fear,
is a freedom...".
Marilyn Ferguson

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

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

"Just Beyond The Surf..."

"Just beyond the surf.
From our vantage on the backs of the waves,
we couldn't see the break.
But we could hear the roar.
As waves dropped onto the beach,
churning sand and rocks in their turbulence...".
Jon Turk

Friday, November 03, 2017

"Wandering Epiphanies..."

Out among the summits that day, I was reminded how adventuring is not just about the endless vistas, nor only about the brilliant sunrises and sunbeams we see out there for example, as wonderfully amazing that they always seem to be. So many times we also sense certain kinds of beginnings, those previously unknown ways and means for seeing, in developing formative perceptions about all of what we experience in so many new ways as well.
This is what was unfolding that hiking day out with close friends, to the headwaters of a great river, near an ancient glacier, and right by the immense waterfall that shares in the stories within all that mountain history. What eventually manifests on such adventures we can never really predict. One of the many reasons we go, as I'm sure we all sense, is the seeking of such inspiration out there - the hope for discovery of new things, different ways to see, and for even more meaningful ways to be.
This is reflects the phenomenon of the epiphany.
That nexus of awareness and effort, energy and adversity, attitude and perspective, connection and projection, all within our past, present, and future. This all allows the elements to blend, and then unfold, in so many kinds of amazing revelations.
Three such epiphanies were gifted to me that hiking day.
First was an energetic youth, whom we saw moving along the trail up ahead. His gait was uneven, almost as if he was unsure. But that was not the case at all, for he was hiking with a prosthetic leg, yet more surely than many we have met out there. His pace, his intention, that smile, and determination, all shared so much about discovery.
Then later, was an elder. A woman out with her family, who surprised us when we were to catch up. Her energy was endless, her enthusiasm contagious. I asked as politely as I could of her son how old she was. "Seventy eight", he said so proudly, "and she's not slowing down at all". There again was that wonderful appearance, of both perception and inspiration, hiking out ahead of us, so gracefully amidst that later time of life and yet in this wild place too.
Finally, most profoundly, at the far portion of our hike, near the base of that very high waterfall, was another of that adventure days epiphanies hiking slowly towards us. I had been gathering up old rocks that would surely later have a bit of paint splashed upon them. Through the mist surrounding me, I looked up to see one of my friends talking with a couple. The gentleman looked about my age, but it was his face that caught my eye. He looked tired in a different way, yet a smile and happy gestures were there as well. When approaching them, as I needed to place the stones I had gathered up in my pack over by my friend, I was then able to listen in a bit to the conversation. "What a wonderful waterfall", they were saying, and "a gorgeous trail we've hiked over", they were sharing about too. I don't know how the topic then came up, but as we do chat about so much with others out on the trail, then this person shared about what this day out there meant to him. His cancer had recently returned. There would be no treatments this time around, he said, while decisions now needed to be made, and hiking this whole trail this day was one of these.
The mist on my face hid the tears in my eyes as I listened quietly to the rest of his story. Then later with a wave and a smile, they carried on and I waved back, then watched them hike on further.
I am sure you all share in the same revelations that came to mind right then my friends.
Three epiphanies appeared, and were gifted us that long adventure day, and we will not ever forget them..... DSD  

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

"Elliot's Echoes..."

"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

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

"Happy Halloween..."

Happy Halloween My Friends!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

"Your Beautiful Images..."

"A heart of gold is where the rainbow begins.”   Tammy Kubasko

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      

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

"Looking For Mystery..."

"Allow mystery, which is to say to yourself, 'There could be more, there could be things we don't understand'..." 
Barry Lopez

Monday, October 23, 2017

"Only Those Eyes..."

There is a time of day, hours before first light, when adventurers - climbers in particular; rise to set out upon the earliest alpine start.
These are hours of the deepest darkness; where the intense mystery and the quiet may close in upon you in either comfort or anxiousness.
On my solo scramble that particular very early day, I was following the old saying of adding time to your day by being earlier up; rather than hoping for extra hours at the end when energy and weather are more unpredictable.
I was moving on the trail before three am, amidst that crispness and cold air the mountains are known for.
It was so very pitch black; such an intense quiet, only the crunch of my boots and uphill nature of my breathing was apparent.
What I saw I was not sure; not sure at all.
A sense of something, a glimmer of not one but two small points of light.
Just two small points of light - and then they blinked; closed for a short second and then turned and looked more directly, very intently, upon me.
I was no longer alone on that trail, maybe never was, but whatever was now sharing the path, of it all I could see were its eyes.
Only its eyes.
Eyes with a light behind them; reflecting an intelligence of another kind; wisdom of another nature. I do swear they shifted color ever so slightly as they watched me watching them.
After a few moments of quiet stillness my fears and anxieties diminished, were no longer as intense, and were replaced more now by curiosity and a feeling of kinship.
It was a moment of reminder; of looking back to our ancient selves and where we have all come from.
I was reminded too that our four legged fellow companions are always out there, we most often simply do not see them as they view us.
In a playful way as I have often done with my own furred companions, I made myself blink in a long, slow manner, as this is what many animals do when first meeting each other, deciding neither is a threat, and are then prepared to begin to trust.
And these two bight eyes blinked back just as slowly.
It was a connection; an understanding of sorts that I sense may have passed between us then. I moved further along the trail to see what would happen next, feeling clumsy in my movements and the noise I made.
This creature moved along with me, yet only the eyes could I see, and it moved in total and absolute silence.
We continued to share what I believe were a few more moments where each of us was wondering about the other. And then with a wisp of what may have been grey.
It was gone.
Many say or write that the eyes tell all.
When I looked into those eyes I saw our wild past. It affirmed for me yet again that we are not so far from our other family out in the wild places as we may think.
I will never forget those eyes..... DSD  

Friday, October 20, 2017

"One Of Our Secrets..."

"Distance changes utterly when you take the world on foot.
A mile becomes a long way,
two miles literally considerable,
ten miles whopping, 
fifty miles at the limits of conception.
The world, you realize, is enormous in a way
that only you and a small community of fellow hikers know.
Planetary scale is your little secret...".
Bill Bryson

Thursday, October 19, 2017


Listen to the songs of the oceans and mountains, the songs of the forests and the rivers. 
Then listen more closely. 
For you may see that it is you that has been singing...". 
Grandfather, Mountain Elder

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

"Watch For The Stars..."

"Dwell on the beauty of life.
Watch for the stars.
And see yourself running with them.
Marcus Aurelius

Sunday, October 15, 2017

"Of Seeing..."

"The real voyage of discovery consists not only in seeking new lands, but in seeing with new eyes...".  M. Proust

Friday, October 13, 2017

"Look Up And Dream..."

"The Greeks pondered the causes of things. If you had asked them, 'Why are there mountains' they'd give you four causes. The Material cause is the ground has the potential to become a mountain. The Efficient cause is that mountains are just elevated earth standing up. The Formal cause is the earth raised them up. But the Final cause is where it gets interesting. They'd say the Final cause of mountains is they exist because humans need to look up and dream..."
"I've always been fascinated by the why . You know, the oldest questions in the world...". J. Auld   

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

"A Favorite Story..."

Some time back, Kraig at 'The Adventure Blog' posted about: Video: A Story For Tomorrow , I was intrigued, then so very inspired... 
Here was a very powerful video story of two young adventurers and their journey through Chile, from the Atacama Desert in the north, to the mountains of Patagonia in the south. The images are amazing, the music so very engaging, the voice of the narrator so inviting. 
These few quotes resonated and echoed out each time I played this:
"A long, long time ago, there where two people who looked very much like yourselves, and as with you, they were on a journey, a quest if you will, to find what we all seem to be searching for. For reasons they may never know... They entered... A place where time and direction don't exist. Yet they still pressed on... Each day a new door, a new direction, a new way to be... Until time simply faded away. As with all those who have come before you... They only found me - their future, quietly waiting, and I asked them the same two questions I will some day ask you: Is it possible to be happy with this life? And then I will ask as I do to everyone else: Did you enjoy your story?" 
My thanks again to Kraig for this special past post, and our gratitude for this gift from these two young adventurers at Gnarly Bay, who shared about their wonderful wanderings... 
Please visit and enjoy: ..... DSD  

Sunday, October 08, 2017

"Of Thanksgiving..."

Let's all take a few moments, to simply reflect upon our appreciations, and the gratitude we each have, for having one another in our lives.
A thanksgiving homage for all of you my Friends.

"Deeper Within Our Moments..."

Back in those initial moments,
During all of that intensive preparation.
We each dreamed of eventually being on our way,
Towards a longed for journey of adventure - and then we began...
Up there in those unfolding moments,
Upon that long winding ridgeline,
Over rock we were not sure of,
We felt there would be so much energy and excitement - and there clearly was...
Amidst those very challenging moments,
Throughout the route, and then the crux of this chosen mountain.
We thought there would be those engaging sensations of such focus and concentration - and there certainly were...
Then deep within those forever moments,
Finally upon our so elusive summit.
Within that calmness of winds, clouds, and perceptions,
We hoped for those gentle emotions of contentment and connection - and now there always will be..... DSD 

Thursday, October 05, 2017

"Enduring Silence..."

"Much silence has a mighty noise...". Swahili Proverb
"The quieter you become, the more you can hear...". Ram Dass
There are many voices being raised far out there. 
The one voice we each need to hear. The many voices of the most most vulnerable ones.
Often the quietest one, is that which speaks from within such silence.
Nature and our Mother Earth are a silently powerful, yet vulnerable, entity that also must be heard.
Wild place adventures embrace a silence that must be listened closely for too.
Why is our quiet time of musing in nature of such value?
Pythagoras said, "Learn to be silent. Let your mind listen and absorb".
When we wonder in this way, we come closer to discovering our motives; our own personal why's.
When we ponder such, we begin to then create meaning.
These become the very essence for our motivation - for why we go, and for what we do out in the wild places.
Then in understanding what as Nietzsche wrote, "Our greatest experiences, are our quietest moments".
We will then stand up for, and protect, that which we see as important and at the foundation of our intentions and meanings.
All of this provides us with a sense of true purpose.
And that is much to gain from the silence of a quiet moment of musing out there.
A silence that must be heard..... DSD 

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

"Your Spirit Stone..."

From the very moment I saw it, in those minutes right when I gathered it up, that stone had a wonderful story to tell.
It is truly a beautiful rock, one whose form gives you a sense of its' ancient history. No way would it have been right there in that wild place; no way would it have been as shaped and as polished so finely - unless its motions over the millenia, among all those boulders, from within a nearby glacier, had taken it on its' own timeless journey. 
From the very moment I turned it over and over in my hand, I was beginning to envision what this stone's essence would express. You could sense from its' shape, from the lines upon and within it, from the small chips, even the tinier cracks, and especially from the smoothness over most of its' surface- what its' temperament, strength, and vigour was sharing.
Here, in my hand, was truly a spirit stone...
One whose character had endured all the elements had placed upon it. 
A stone's spirit is an essential thing, one I try to look so closely for and understand. Some have travelled so very far. Many have such unique virtue in the way they have survived the forces over so long that have attempted to break them. We adventurer's can identify dearly with these meanings. 
Right from the moment I gathered it up I felt I knew what this stone wanted to reveal. I sensed I knew where it wanted to be later placed. So right from where I found it as well, I gathered up small particles of every other element, to be 'mixed in' within the bright paints to be layered upon it. 
Now, in your hand, you may have this very stone. 
When I gathered it up I hoped you would find it. I hope too you sense the essence there, those wonderful intrinsic components that made it, the virtue reflecting where it has been, the meanings of the elements in the paints, and the symbolism hopefully it also represents from within your own adventures...
Like Ceremony Stones and Scholar Rocks , your Summit Stone has a spirit and a story all of its' own, always calling to your longings..... DSD