House of Hygge

I’ve never been anywhere that epitomizes the word “bucolic” like the landscape of rural southwest Wisconsin. I don’t really need to describe it for you. You’ve seen it. Picture every pastoral painting, every wide-angle shot of Middle America: the rolling hills of green grass and amber waves of grain, the fat, doe-eyed cows, red barn complete with silo. Continue reading “House of Hygge”

Find Your Snack: Grin and Bear It

Hiking in the Tetons in the dark is a little different than hiking in places uninhabited by grizzly bears in the dark, namely because of grizzly bears and the fact that they live there.

The National Park Service turns 100 years old in 2016, and dirtbags nationwide are finding creative ways to commemorate the NPS Centennial. (My favorite so far is the Dirtbag Diaries’Milepost series.) I, on the other hand, lack artistic sensibilities, and am thus marking the occasion in the same way I celebrate everything else: by eating. Without further ado, then, I present the next installment in this series about things I’ve eaten, or seen eaten (in this case, almost me), in national parks. Continue reading “Find Your Snack: Grin and Bear It”

Rise and shine

I guess I should rephrase: I’m a morning person once I’m up and at ‘em. Before I get out of bed, it’s anyone’s guess what might happen. It takes a lot of coaxing for me to drag my ass out of bed every morning.

I’m a morning person. I like watching the sunrise and drinking my first cup of coffee without being rushed. But it wasn’t always this way. I’m a morning person because my favorite things happen in the morning, or, rather, because morning is the time to do them if you want to beat thunderstorms and traffic. Continue reading “Rise and shine”

Who’s rooting for you?

“Did you send it???” My text message whooshes into the vast internet netherworld. Seconds later, I’m greeted by the familiar dancing ellipsis, and the anticipation builds as I wait for my friend Pat to tell me if he’s finally sent Sonic Youth, a route described on Mountain Project as “one of Clear Creek’s best climbs.”

“Did you send it???”

My text message whooshes into the vast internet netherworld. Seconds later, I’m greeted by the familiar dancing ellipsis, and the anticipation builds as I wait for my friend Pat to tell me if he’s finally sent Sonic Youth, a route described on Mountain Project as “one of Clear Creek’s best climbs.” Continue reading “Who’s rooting for you?”

A mid-season reflection: What are those turns worth?

As I’ve written before, I’ve spent a lot of the last handful of years thinking about death. Not in an abstract way—what is life; who am I?—but in an all-too-real, terribly concrete way: both professionally and for recreation, the pursuits I’m drawn to require us to undertake a great deal of risk, and lately I’ve read the accident reports of peers, colleagues, friends-of-friends, and role models who bore the consequences of that risk in the most catastrophic way imaginable. Continue reading “A mid-season reflection: What are those turns worth?”