Travel

In the Fortress of the Bear: Brown Bears and the Legacy of Stan Price

The dark bear marches towards us, her powerful front legs swinging in a bowlegged walk. A large, lighter colored male follows her. The corners of his mouth curve upward in a sort of permanent smile. But the foam on “Smiley’s” lips and his clacking teeth make the situation less amusing. The large hump between their shoulders leaves no doubt that …

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Notes from the Arctic Circle Trail

The Arctic Circle Trail (ACT) is a hundred-mile overland trek from the airport town of Kangerlussuaq to the fishing village of Sisimiut in west Greenland. It traverses from the edge of the Greenland ice sheet to the outer coast over a rolling landscape of Arctic tundra. We hiked it in August 2018. Here are a few notes from our journal …

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Indian Heaven by Horseback: A Return to the Great Outdoors

Hopefully, better times are coming for outdoors lovers. Washington governor Jay Inslee hinted at the end of April that his stay-at-home order may soon be loosened a little. Presumably, among the edicts to be lifted are those restricting outdoor recreation. The wilderness beckons, offering healing for the soul while honoring the objectives of social distancing. Enthusiastic horseback riders are eagerly …

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August Allen’s Greenland

In August, 2018 Photographer August Allen and hiking partner Abby Sussman hiked the Arctic Circle Trail, a 100-mile trekking route in West Greenland, starting on the edge of the great ice sheet; crossing tundra, passing still, silent lakes and watching muskox, caribou and arctic hares along the way, eventually arriving on the shores of Baffin Bay. Greenland is the most …

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Do they really say “Mush?”

“Why in God’s name would you do that?” The Peace Arch border agent stared at me like I’d lost my mind. I just told him that I was traveling to the Yukon. It was January 7th. “Do you how cold it gets? They don’t call it the Great White North for nothing.” Then he looked at my car. “Tell me …

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The Magic of Cascadia on Horseback

Experiencing the great outdoors on horseback is an incomparable experience. The feeling of symbiosis with a powerful animal adds to the sense of being one with nature. Challenging your physical endurance is enhanced by developing a bond with your steed. Conquering steep mountain trails requires quite different skills than racing, as speed offers a different kind of adrenaline. If the …

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The British Columbia Effect

Happier. More creative. Less stressed. This is what even a short stay in BC can do for you, Destination British Columbia is telling a growing audience of wellness-minded potential tourists. Quoting scientific studies, a recent promotional short video of theirs informs us that immersion in nature improves short-term memory by 20%, boosts creative problem-solving by 50% and decreases cortisol level …

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The Endless Chain

There it was: The Endless Chain. Tall, long and slender. Like a rocky red carpet laid out before me, I approached the soaring ridge with confidence, containing my excitement, knowing that this would be the first time a paraglider would ever fly along that perfect spine. But as I neared the sheer face, I found myself pummeled by gust after …

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Field Trip: The Painted Hills

Way out in the middle of north-central Oregon, the Painted Hills are one of three discontiguous units of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, an under-appreciated gem in our inventory of public lands. All three are worthy of exploration, but the Painted Hills are something special. Located near the weather-beaten hamlet of Mitchell (population: 130), the Painted Hills are …

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Field Trip: Stephens Passage

We leave No Name Cove in early morning sunlight. No other boats are in sight, and the only sound is the clanking of the anchor being pulled up, and then the distinctive ka-chunk ka-chunk of the M/V David B’s engine. As we motor into Stephens Passage, mist blurs the spruce forest along the shore, and dense fog obliterates all but …

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