Let me first say that this piece will not really be political. At least, I don’t think so. What it will be is a defense of our national parks, which […]
Why are the outdoors and so many of its brands so white? In this essay I ask those questions, and try to provide a couple of answers.
What happens when a society stops valuing thinking as work? What happens when commodities become more important than the people that produce them?
Why do people go outside? I mean, besides the obvious, like having to go to work or move from the house to some other point in the world. What draws […]
I was running down the mountain as fast as I could, while still being safe, trying to quickly return to the car to retrieve water so that I could hike […]
Dear Readers, As I continue to try to find a work life balance that works for this blog, as well as the time to keep original content coming, please check […]
Last night I had the strangest dream. I was driving in an SUV, ran over a lovely flower bed on some private land and momentarily got stuck in a man-made […]
In Ben Montgomery’s eye-opening profile, Grandma Gatewood’s Walk: The Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail, readers encounter the real life folk heroin Emma Gatewood. On the […]
(A quick note: while the gender of the speaker remains undetermined, I sometimes use the masculine for the sake of simplicity and consistency. It seems easier than having to repeatedly […]
I had to stop to breathe; this mountain was kicking my ass. The slopes at the base of the cliffs were talused, debris-filled, and more resembled sand than soil. Trees […]
(Cover Image: Fred Beckey) Virtually anyone who climbs, has ever picked up a climbing magazine, seen Reel Rock, or any YouTube video on climbing, knows the term “dirtbag”. The general […]
I never pictured myself as a blogger. After graduate school, most of the writing I did, when I did it, revolved around literary criticism. That was the original plan: get […]
Change. Life’s great constant. Humans possess a remarkable ability to shape their circumstances in life. While there is no doubt that there exists a great many factors in life over […]
As a brief note, this article often uses the term climbing in a broad sense to include everything from rock climbing to mountaineering and hiking. As I rediscover climbing in […]
Civilization and its Discontent: Reviewing Michael Finkel’s 2017, The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit
On the other hand, Finkel does not gloss over the more unsavory aspects of this story: the fact the Knight was a terror to the local population of North Pond. Debbie Baker, one of the person’s interviewed for Finkel’s story and quoted at the top of this piece, perfectly highlights the fact that this is not some romantic narrative about one seeking refuge from the monstrousness of civilization. Rather, Knight was the horror. To Baker’s children Knight was the monster in the closet and under the bed, the boogeyman, the thing that goes bump in the night and every other unsavory beast that children dream up in the deep dark of their minds—except he was real. Knight had become the reason children need night lights. Knight himself acknowledged as much after his arrest in 2013.
You don't need the majesty of mountains or the glory of a Californian coastline to reap the benefits of being outside; you just have to get out there. "I'd rather be outside on a rainy day than in the office on a bright and sunny one". Unknown.