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Adventure Activism, Diversity, Environmental Protection, Essays, Latino Outdoors, National Monuments, National Parks, Natives Outdoors, Outdoor Recreation, Public Land, Special Events / 06.11.2017

On the last night of the SHIFT Festival in Jackson, Wyoming the organizers hosted an after-party at the Organic Lotus Restaurant. By 1:AM a steady beat of house music still roused a group of at least 30 Millennials to dance away the night well into the morning. Damp with sweat I sidled over to the bar for a drink of water. Even after a double hip replacement it doesn’t take much to get this aging Gen-Xer out on the dance floor. Inspired by the energy and enthusiasm of...

Commentary, Diversity, Madison, Nelson Institute, Yosemite / 23.10.2017

Much of the past weekend I spent happily lamenting an embarrassment of excellent choices. It seemed that the third week of October 2017 was an exceptionally good moment in time to explore, discuss and celebrate the emergence of diversity within the environmental conservation movement. There were at least four events across the country that brought together people of color to share their efforts to make the outdoors more welcoming and accessible to a broader cross-section of the American people. Sadly I was only able to attend two of...

Environmental Justice, Film Review, Food, Gardening, Interview, Podcast, Sustainable Living, Urban Agriculture, Wisconsin / 20.10.2017

It was the summer of 2017 and I was just coming off a major reporting project. I’d spent the better part of a year working on series of stories about the private land owners, farmers and ranchers and their relationship with the natural world. Modern agriculture is such a big deal, because things like soil health and water quality directly impact the nutrition, physical health and wellbeing of people all over the world.  But farms no matter how big or small also have a profound effect on the...

Alpinist, Climbing, Diversity, In Memoria, On Assignment / 16.10.2017

  When my friend Aimee Copp, the director of the Adventure Film Festival invited me to come to Boulder to take part in this wonderful event she asked me, “So James, what are your working on?”. I immediately told her about an exciting story that I’m writing  for Alpinist Magazine about a French climber who died on Aconcagua in 1995. She asked me to appear on stage at the Boulder Theatre to tell this remarkable story. If you’ve read the memoir of the great American climber Lynn Hill you may...

Adventure Film, Alpinist, Appalachian Trail, Climbing, Diversity, Essays, Film Festival, Film Review / 13.10.2017

After a long day of watching movies and a late night of drinking, I slept with a man I love. Certainly no lapse of judgement, my friend Jeremy Collins invited me to share his bed in the Boulder Adventure Lodge at 1AM rather than drive twenty miles back to Golden through a sloppy storm of rain, sleet and snow. A few weeks earlier at another one of the many film festival events that we attend together, he joked with a crowd during a Q&A that we had shared...

Capitol Christmas Tree, Charitable Giving, Joy To America, Special Events, U.S. Forest Service / 02.10.2017

Every year the U.S. Forest Service is charged with delivering an 80-foot evergreen tree to the American people to serve as the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree. Chosen from a national forest somewhere in country the tree, commonly called the People's Tree is a symbol of our great national heritage of environmental conservation and preservation. For the past three years it has been my piviledge and honor to accompany the People's tree from the site of its harvest across the country to where it is delivered to the grounds of...