The Adventure Gap

Commentary, Diversity, Everyone In A Park, Hiking, Ice Age Trail, National Forests, National Parks, Outdoor Recreation, Public Land, ReThinkOutside, The Adventure Gap, Wisconsin / 21.09.2020

Immediately after breakfast, our little group sat discussing what would happen next. A steady rain had been falling since late the night before and the prospects of the hike we had planned appeared grim. Holding up my iPad I showed everyone an image of the local weather radar map.“As can see there’s a bit of window opening up,” I said pointing to a clear spot in a mass of swirling colors ranging from yellow/orange to deep red. “If we start now, we should be OK for a little...

An American Ascent, Commentary, Diversity, Essays, Grand Canyon, Magazines, National Geographic, National Parks, Public Land, The Adventure Gap, Yosemite / 14.07.2020

  HALFWAY INTO OUR two-week paddling trip through the Grand Canyon, my longtime friend Jim Moss had a sudden realization. After a thrilling day exploring limpid blue pools and towering waterfalls beneath the desert rim, we sat in beach chairs drinking ice-cold beer along the banks of the Colorado River.“You know? I’ve made more than 40 commercial guiding trips through this place,” he said. “In 25 years, I think you’re the first African American I’ve ever seen down here.”There’s a statistical reason for this: Although Black Americans represent 13.4...

#BlackLivesMatter, Adventure Film, Alaska, An American Ascent, Breaking News, Diversity, Film preview, Outdoors For All, The Adventure Gap / 02.07.2020

Thursday, July 9, 2020 will be the 56th Anniversary of Charles Madison Crenchaw’s historic summit of Denali. As the first Black person to reach the highest peak in North America this remarkable event is particularly significant because it occurred just seven days after the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed into law. Crenchaw’s climb of Denali personified the dream described a year earlier by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the March on Washington. Through his skills as an alpinist and his strength of will, Crenchaw ascended...

Commentary, Diversity, Environmental Justice, Essays, Nelson Institute, Outdoors For All, ReThinkOutside, The Adventure Gap / 24.04.2020

Through the  hive-mind of social media I was reminded this morning on LinkedIn that yesterday was my third work anniversary at the University of Wisconsin, Madison Nelson Institute For Environmental Studies. It just so happened at that moment I was deep in thought on a series of 12 sessions I am preparing for my summer class called Outdoors For All. Over the course of four weeks my students and I take a long look back in time at the racial disparities that separate those who spend time in...

Cycling, Expedition Denali, Madison, River Restoration, The Adventure Gap / 06.09.2018

In 2014, Mary Ann Thomas bicycled solo across the US and Canada. In 2017, She peddled across India with a travel partner and connected with local bike communities in cities across the nation. Accessing these cycling havens in India provided examples of community that she, a brown queer daughter of Indian immigrants, had only rarely seen in the US bike world. On September 15, 2018 her remarkable experience is the subject of a most compelling evening of community story sharing in Madison, Wisconsin at Café Domestique and the...

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...