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Grande Ronde River – 4 Days by Packraft

Grande Ronde River

Join us on a 4-day packrafting trip down the Wallowa and Grande Ronde Rivers in NE Oregon and SE Washington. The Grande Ronde is a National Wild and Scenic River, administered by the BLM, Oregon Parks and Recreation and the US Forest Service. Four of us paddled Alpacka packrafts. We put-in on the Wallowa River […]


John Day River – 5 Days by Packraft & Canoe

Floating John Day River by packraft and canoe

The John Day River in central Oregon made for a great 5-day paddle with friends last week. The John Day is a national Wild and Scenic River, an Oregon Scenic Waterway, and is the second longest free-flowing river in the continental United States. Three of us paddled Alpacka packrafts, and one a Clipper canoe. We […]


Solar Charge Your Photo Expedition – Part 1

Thumb-backyard-songbird-photo-shoot

Going on a multi-week photography expedition in the wild with no place to recharge your batteries? In this post, we test a solar charging system for keeping your camera batteries charged up and ready to go on your next long wilderness adventure. Read below, or watch my 20 minute YouTube video. WARNING: This post is […]


More Backyard Songbirds

Male spotted towhee perched on red flowering current branch

With the caronavirus lock-down keeping me home, and a red flowering currant bush in full bloom in the back yard, today was a perfect day for photographing songbirds. I moved my suet block feeder next to the flowering currant and set up my Tragopan pop-up photo blind about 10 feet away.  In minutes the birds […]


Photographing Backyard Songbirds from Photo Blind

Female dark-eyed junco in winter plumage perched on vine maple branch.

I have been having fun this winter shooting backyard songbirds from my new photo blind.  The pop-up photo blind sets up in less than 2 minutes and allows me to get within 10 feet of the birds as they feed from a suet feeder or perch on nearby branches.  Waterproof construction means I can leave […]


Great Blue Heron – Fir Island

Great blue heron standing at edge of muddy irrigation channel, Fir Island, Skagit County, Washington

A great blue heron (Ardea herodias) watches for fish or frogs in a muddy irrigation canal in a field on Fir Island.


Pine Siskin

AEF1-pine-siskin-winter

Spotted this little finch eating seeds in a shrub alongside the Nooksack River. Pine siskin live year-round in Washington State,  and are seed-eaters closely related to gold finch.  This little guy can increase its metabolic rate by 5X in order to survive overnight temperatures as low as -85F.  They store extra seeds in a portion […]


Frosty Morning in Snohomish River Estuary

Sun rises Union Slew and Spencer Island, Spencer Island, Snohomish Country Parks & Recreation, Everett, Washington

It was a frosty early morning of bird watching on Spencer Island in the Snohomish River Estuary. An extremely high tide (12.0 feet) flooded through breaches in the dikes and into the estuary, providing great fishing habitat for great blue heron and bald eagles. The sun rose in a spectacle of color and began melting […]


Skyline Divide Trail – Washington North Cascades

Magenta paintbrush and other alpine meadow wildflowers blooming on Skyline Divide, North Cascade mountains, Washington State, USA

If you the to do some hiking in Washington State’s North Cascade mountains, consider the Skyline Divide trail.  This classic ridge hike is accessed from a 4400 foot altitude trailhead that quickly gets  you up into flower-filled sub-alpine meadows.  Mount Baker’s north face dominates the view to the south, while Mount Shuksan fills the eastern […]


Venice Grand Canal

Morning breaks over the Grand Canal, viewed from Accademia Bridge, Venice, Italy

A few shots of Venice’s Grand Canal (Canal Grande or Canal Grando), Venezia’s primary transportation corridor, from my recent trip to photograph the Venice Carnival.  All photographs made with a Fujifilm X100T, some with long exposures to make boat traffic disappear. Grand Canal, Palazzo Cavalli-Franchetti and Santa Maria della Salute, Venice, Italy.  Exposure:  30 sec. […]


Venice Carnival

Man dressed in traditional mask and costume for Venice Carnival standing in Piazza San Marco in front of Saint Mark's Basilica, Venice, Veneto, Italy

He struts his way across Piazza San Marco, sauntering painfully slow through a crowd of thousands of photo-snapping carnival goers.  Step … pose for some photos … step … pose … step …  His pale expressionless hollow-eyed mask contrasts with his black and red feathery tricorne hat and deeply folded black robes. I estimate his […]


Mountain Heather, Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington Cascades

Pink mountain heather in subalpine meadow, Mount Daniel in background, Wenatchee Mountains, central Washington Cascade Mountains

“Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread.” — Edward Abbey


Viking Ship Vallhalla, Petersburg, Alaska

Replica of Viking ship Vallhalla at Bojer Wikan Fishermen's Memorial Park, Petersburg, Alaska

“The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward


Seaplane Hanger, Petersburg, Alaska

Seaplane at dock hanger, Petersburg, Alaska

“What if i fall? Oh, but my darling, what if you fly?” — Erin Hanson


Mountain Ridges, Glacier Bay National Park, Southeast Alaska

Forested mountain ridges shrouded in fog, Glacier Bay National Park, Southeast Alaska

“In the presence of eternity, the mountains are as transient as the clouds.” — Robert Green Ingersoll  


Camping on Sermilik Fjord, East Greenland

Camper's feet and view out door of tent onto icebergs on Sermilik Fjord near settlement of Tiniteqilaq, East Greenland

“We do not remember days, we remember moments.” — Cesare Pavese


Liberty Bell Mountain, Washington Pass, Washington

Pond below Liberty Bell Mountain, Washington Pass, Hwy 20, Wenatchee National Forest, North Cascades, Washington

“In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.” — Thomas Jefferson  


Wasenegg Ridge, Swiss Alps

Woman and girl hiking on Wasenegg ridge on Schilthorn mountain, Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau in background, Switzerland

“The mountains are calling and I must go.” — John Muir


Rialto Beach, Olympic National Park, Washington State

Sea stack at sunset, Rialto Beach, Olympic National Park, Washington State

“In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” — Abraham Lincoln


Western Red Cedar, Cascade Mountains, Washington State

Western red cedar, Cascade Mountains, Washington State

“It is not so much for its beauty that the forest makes a claim upon men’s hearts, as for that subtle something – that quality of air, that emanation from old trees, that so wonderfully changes and renews a weary spirit.” — Robert Louis Stevenson


Seal Launching into the Kananaskis River, Alberta, Canada

Male whitewater kayaker seal launches into the Kananaskis River just upstream from Widow Maker rapid, Kananaskis County, Alberta, Canada

“If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine, it’s fatal.” — Paolo Coelho


Snowshoeing in the North Cascades, Washington

Snowshoeing in the North Cascades, Mt Baker in Background, Washington Cascade Mountains

“To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold.” — Aristotle


Downey Creek Trail, Cascade Mountains, Washington State

Trail through old growth forest, Downey Creek Trail, Cascade Mountains, Washington State

“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.” — John Muir


Girl hiking Schilthorn mountain, Switzerland

Girl hiking trail on trail from Grauseeli to Wasenegg ridge on Schilthorn mountain with the Lauterbrunnen Wall in background, Switzerland

“Only as high as I reach can I grow, only as far as I seek can I go, only as deep as I look can I see, only as much as I dream can I be.” — Karen Ravn