On Assignment

Climate Change, Commentary, Destinations, Environmental Protection, Expedition News, National Geographic, On Assignment, The Adventure Gap, The Arctic / 08.01.2018

Even after many years of adventure travel I still agonize over the purchase of a new piece of equipment. With my finger hovering over the “buy now” button at the Baffin.com web site, I weighed the prospects of full commitment to this latest project. The outlay of serious cash for a pair of three-pin ski boots was the first step in putting together an ambitious kit capable of withstanding the harshest cold-weather conditions on the planet. Five years now after a double hip replacement and well into my...

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 Activism, Books, Capitol Christmas Tree, National Forests, On Assignment, Public Land, Special Events / 15.12.2016

The Joy Trip Project has published a small book of photographs depicting the events surrounding the 2016 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree Tour. Although many of these images were widely distributed online via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter I am very happy to be able to share the work of this latest project in printed form. This book in two formats (7X7 and 10X8) is available now at Blurb.com as a lasting reminder of the many special people I had the pleasure to meet and photograph on this wonderful adventure. In...

Commentary, Diversity, National Parks, New Century Vision, On Assignment, Yosemite / 07.09.2016

[dropcap]A[/dropcap]s fate would have it, I was heading to Yosemite any way. It was just a few days in advance of my departure on a two-week Joy Trip with stops in California then Utah, a sharp right turn to Washington DC and back to California. I had already arranged a few interviews to gain some additional perspective on the role that people of color play in efforts to protect and preserve the natural world. So when a travel editor from the Guardian newspaper in London contacted by email...

Capitol Christmas Tree, Charitable Giving, On Assignment / 23.11.2015

The first significant snowfall of the year was apparent as my plane touched down on the tarmac of O’Hare International Airport in Chicago. Once again I had dodged the weather. Having fallen the day before I was happy to see the ice and snow melting in the sunshine of a clear afternoon that would not delay my return flight home to Madison, Wisconsin. After almost four weeks on the road and more than 6,000 miles of travel this was just one of the many wonderful things in my...

Capitol Christmas Tree, Charitable Giving, On Assignment / 18.11.2015

Chillicothe Ohio, population 21,899, likely drew the most inspiring crowd we’ve seen so far. The Capitol Christmas Tree cruised to stop in front of Mount Logan Elementary School. To the sheer delight of several hundred children the massive semi-truck arrived driven by a man in a bright red coat that bore an uncanny resemblance to Santa Claus. The moment John Schank, 2014 Alaska Truck Driver of the Year, descended the steps of his customized Kenworth big-rig the kids swarmed around to get their pictures taken with him and...