National Parks

Diversity, Essays, Grand Canyon, National Parks, Public Land, Whitewater / 03.09.2018

Several weeks ago a travel magazine contacted me out of the blue. The senior executive editor of  HereMagazine.com very graciously invited me to contribute to an upcoming issue dedicated to the theme of freedom. She was particularly interested in a story from me on the National Parks and the role that spending time in nature plays in my personal pursuit of happiness. It just so happened that I had given that topic a great deal of thought in recent months and I accepted the assignment with the intention...

Commentary, Deserts, National Parks / 10.08.2018

It’s a rare travel day when I can sleep past 6AM. On this particular occasion I had more than four hours to kill before my flight was scheduled to depart. As the dogs padded circles around our bed I heard the click, click, clicking of their nails on the hardwood floors. Mekela, our blond Great Pyrenees, leaped up on to the bed between us, snuggling her face close to mine, licking at my nose until I rubbed her furry belly.“That was your last night in a bed for...

Ask James, Letters, National Parks / 03.08.2018

Just back from the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market the business of adventure is very much front of mind. With a major push underway within the industry to expand the diversity of outdoor recreation and environmental conservation I am especially thinking about how a person might begin a career. After almost 30 years steeped in the community of outdoor professionals it’s hard to fathom where to begin turning your passion into a vocation.I recently received an email from a reader who asks the same question: [dropcaps type='normal' font_size='72' color='#f78e0f' background_color=''...

National Monuments, National Parks, New Century Vision, Politics, Public Land / 08.05.2018

Within minutes of my flight touching down at McCarran International Airport I felt that unique buzz of kinetic energy. Like a force of nature the city of Las Vegas, Nevada seems to vibrate with the thrum of living creatures writhing in a primeval forest of tall buildings. Throughout an ecosystem whose atmosphere teams with the smell of cigarettes, the sound of slot machines and the fuzzy glow of neon lights, the temperature was relatively cool, even pleasant on this day in early spring. A gentle breeze wafted across the...

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...

#ORSummer, Charitable Giving, National Parks, philanthropy / 30.07.2017

The most exciting thing I saw this year at the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market was an old fashioned outhouse. That’s right. Surrounded by aisle after aisle of the latest in camping equipment, technical clothing, action footwear and flashy accessories, this sturdy wooden structure with a crescent moon carved into its door, set my mind and heart racing as I imagined all that it might accomplish. In a prominent spot at the Outdoor Research booth this no-tech privy was a display that symbolized the company’s efforts to do good things...