Saturday, September 27, 2014

Summer Escapades: Lobsters, Turtles and the Central Asian Survival Guide

This is a long post. I'm sorry. If you get to the end of it, I applaud you. But there are lots of pictures and some stories mixed in. Pull up a pint of beer or ice cream and get to it. Most of it's about Central Asia (think Borat and donkeys and guys in weird hats), but there are a few other places scattered in here or there. This is by no means a detailed account of what happened, but more of the highlights. Enjoy :)

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Yemen: Chameleons, Lion Cubs and Military Checkpoints

So you may be wondering how I ended up in Yemen. Or how I got away with not telling my parents where I was going for 4 weeks. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Bugaboos: Pikas, Gushers and Honey

Hari and I met for the first time in a coffee shop about two days before we went climbing in the Bugs. I had caught a ride to the airport with one of his friends when I needed to get from a climbing day in California to a business trip in Minneapolis, who suggested I contact him. And so, another climbing partnership was born through the power of the internet and some deductive stalking (I had to find his email somehow) and some-guy-who-gave-me-a-ride's reference (thanks Brad!).

Squamish: Pies, Crimes and #3 Lies

Picked up H from the airport, departed from Lodi for Seattle, then drove to Squamish for a few days of climbing. I climbed with H for one day before he left for Peru with V when they let me tag along on a Tuolumne weekend of theirs. For some reason he decided I would be a decent enough climbing partner for Squamish, and that is the story of how I found a partner for this adventure. I don't know why people trust me this much after only climbing with me once, but I'll take it.  

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Penguin Huddles, Annie's Mac N' Cheese and Waffle Wednesdays

Mark and I by our campsite for the night
 This post will be an overview of the past several weekends. A lot of climbing jargon may be used. I apologize. The summary is: I'm slowly getting better at trad climbing. Much progress has been made since this past October thanks to patient, knowledgeable mentors.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Hazing, Walk-in Closets and the Art of Free-Soloing

It's been a while since I wrote a blog post, mostly because I'm based in a very 'normal' location this summer (read: not the Arctic or a glacier or a Colombian coffee plantation). Quick update for those of you I don't get to see or talk to. I just finished a year of engineering at Dartmouth. No, I haven't graduated yet. I'll be graduating from both Middlebury and Dartmouth in the next 2 years. The parents are happy about that and surprised I haven't run off to be a trapper, gold miner or bush pilot somewhere in the Siberian tundra as of yet (just you wait, there's still time).
Photo Cred to the lanky Russian Vitaliy, as well as a thanks for bringing me his down jacket to wear while belaying Hamik on Table of Contents

Friday, December 21, 2012

Spelunking, Strawberry Mini-Wheats and Salsa Containers

After that whole Bozeman climbing icicles adventures, I met up with a friend in Vegas to rock climb at Red Rocks. I would say our stay was defined by brief sporadic bursts of luxury and then utter hobo shenanigans. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

An Old Acquaintance, Drinking Games and Scratching up Icicles

I am crashing at a friend's house and sleeping on her dog's mattress. For the past 8 days it has been wake up, pack up, go climbing, get home, make bread, eat, sleep, repeat. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Hitching: Commies, Pizza Boxes and Kiwis

I have an extended winter break to play with this year, so I hitchhiked from Seattle to Bozeman, MT to do some ice climbing at Hyalite Canyon.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Fire Initiations, Pocahontas and Cats

Things are winding down around Coldfoot, Alaska. A few more pallet fires, guitar jams and hitchhikes before I head south to college in Hanover. Also it snowed last night. In August. I guess it's the Arctic. 

Tent Fever, Hobbits and Howling.

My boss dropped me off for a  couple-week backpacking trip, that got inadvertently extended because of weather issues. I didn't mind. He flew me onto his pioneered landing strip on the Canning River drainage in ANWR---about 200 miles into the refuge----and then promptly left.   

Monday, July 30, 2012

Slaughter House X, Pirogi and Killer Showers

I confess. I'm a cold-hearted butcher. I have slit the throats of 25 innocent chickens, bled them till their feet stopped quivering, scalded them with hot water, wrung them through a plucker and then threw them into an ice chest.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Reunions and Orwell

I'm mostly a solo-going person. Surprise, surprise, who would've guessed. Some call me antisocial, but that being said, I tell a lot of my friends to come visit me, and if I extend an invitation I really mean it.

Friday, July 27, 2012

The Arctic Luau

The evening dishwasher rethinking his career options. 
Coldfoot is like any other place, and that includes hanging out at the beach (in 40 degree weather) and having ourselves an Arctic-style luau----complete with rainbow grass skirts, coconut bras (specially imported from Hawaii by our very own Cory), and whiskey Mai Tai's. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Kevin, Oysters and Bear Shit

I've been flying around with my boss lately to the Noatak, Canning, Koyukuk...It never ceases to amaze me how he can land and take off on a strip that's maybe 200 feet long. 

Generation π: This Game Has No Name

Don't let them fool you... they are out for blood.
 Pictured above are the cannibalistic fowl that my boss kindly named the "Franken-Chickens". We are slaughtering them in 10 days. Yesterday they killed one of their own and devoured it: feathers, bones, beak and all. So watch out for blood-thirsty chickens. Otherwise, here's a glimpse of what life is like above the Arctic Circle.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Bush Pilots, Goslings and Anaphylaxis

I'm in Coldfoot, Alaska working for a Bush Plane company in the Brook's Mountain Range. It seems like I can't get away from spending my summers up north somewhere, so if I get to learn about flying and engines then all the better.

Solstice at around 2:30 am

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Run up Rainier

 I've been in Seattle for a little over a week and am about to fly out to re-start my studies in Vermont. It's been great not wearing 5 layers to bed every night and having a shower and fridge full of food at my disposal.

Climbed Rainier, did some scuba diving in the Puget Sound... all in all, a relaxing time before I get swept up by college life.

Mt. Rainier---14,400' 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Calm Before the Storm: Grizzlies, Guns and Denali

My last several weeks in Alaska are almost over. Below are some pics of what I've been up to in the latter half of the guiding season. Soon I'll be flying to Seattle and then back to college in Vermont. I'm trying to enjoy my last moments of freedom as much as I can. 

Friday, July 29, 2011

White Russians, Cobras and V-threads

Life has been steady here at MICA. Below are some pics from the season so far. My tent (with the two broken, duct-taped poles) is still holding up, I haven't been trampled by the moose that visits my tent at night, and my anchor-building skills are improving.


a long, overhanging route that's killer---one of my favorite

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Life of an Alaskan Guide

Quick update so the chronology of the following post makes sense: I flew to Seattle from Borneo, took a 10-day Wilderness First Responder course in Bozeman, MT, visited Yellowstone (i'm not a fan of the crowds of people everywhere), packed everything back into my backpack and flew up to Anchorage to start my summer job.

Pacific NW

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Borneo: Cheap Rum, Pirates and Treasure-Hunters

Oh Kudat.... what a town. Up until the early 60's, Malaysia still had head-hunters, and cannibalism was an accepted practice. They just pulled a Japanese WW2 tank from the jungle two weeks ago.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Borneo: The (non)Tsunami


Borneo: The flight and the Beginning

Moscow: Vodka, Scarecrows and Uno

Masha and I (Photo courtesy of Dmitriy Sharmorov)
The Mike Horn Project booked me a flight to Moscow for some reason, so I decided to use the free ticket and flew over four time zones to visit my aunt, uncle and grandparents. 

Siberia: Evil Communists, Salt Shortages and the Russian Psyche

My dad's old shoes, that I found while rummaging in a cupboard

Siberia: Dating Shows, Ice Skating and Piroshki

Finally drying out my soaked boots

Switzerland: The Magnetic North Pole Selection Camp

I'm the one in the back chatting with Martin about Russian women.

 Tires, Treadmills and Photoshoots: