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Category Archives: Adventure

What is …………….

I thought things were getting a bit mudane of late thought I’d change it up some what.So down South America way there’s this town called Ollyanta (locals), or Ollyantaytambo (touri) veritable mtb mecca …. my Guide Chet suggested we hit up some Inca ruins up high…. Olly’s at 10 grand so 14grand seemed like it might be a nice good view destination to bivy at. So it was decided open bivy up high in the southern Andes. We had to carry overnight packs while the horse led by two brothers 8 and 10 carried the bikes.Clear sky night at Minus 10C at night with lots of frost and mega stars … and the big dipper is turned around. What can I say the downhill was long and very cool. Ever Mountain bike Peru?? Just do it and bone up on yer Spanish.



Well, when the light is good you gotta get out. I found myself alone, not that I found myself but I was in an interesting local area with a sunny day forecast before the sun rose, knowing that the sun also rises so I’ll take a walk with my camera. A pleasant surprise to find a tide ebbing and thinking that this would be a great place to practice some kayaking surfing before heading out to the west coast. Before long a couple surfers arrive and I wander over and crank a couple of shots. Funny this is only 10 minutes by car from downtown Vancouver. Enjoy the weekend.

I grabbed this shot rather quickly on slow film on a cloudy day with a bit of rapid motion happening.

Raft guide portrait. Where Alsek river Yukon near the BC border.

Adventure how can you find it? You don’t find it the mall.

Alsek River Yukon. Cruising by Grizzlies and Moose while bumping along on the water. The naked vein of grey churning glacial till, erosive and cold full of eddies and whirlpools great company wild land its Canada.

The environmental portrait. What is photography. Photography is light and how it is rendered. Photography asks questions.

Like whats the story here. Look at the people look at the terrain. This was a small Dene aboriginal girl near the arctic circle.

It’s after 11pm the light “magic hour” the photographer’s cinematographers dream light exists for hours. The weather is harsh here its alpine and trees are small. We traveled by bike on this trip part of a compilation of stories we did on the yukon and adventure.

On this iron-worker I used fill to bring up the detail in the facial shadows.

Bit of a tricky shot to light top of highrise in a breeze we were (and gear) tied in.

Watch the condensation on Camera Gear reduce the differential of hot and cold on camera will fog lenses when moving to a warmer place in extreme cold do not breath on camera gear it will ice up. And sleep with batteries on overnight trips.

In behind Whistler there is a bit of a secret ski adventure. The Spearhead Traverse isn’t a secret to the locals or coast mountain travelers but a secret to those that come from afar to ski the lifts.

The area is dangerous to skiers that have no backcountry experience. Unpacked steep slopes beckon but have their own secrets. Avalanches are common and happen frequently and without warning and the variety of snow conditions can be a challenge to ski. Wind pack, crust, slop, powder, ice just about everything can happen here, its usually a great 3-4 day trip but has been done in less by people that have usually skied it before.


And it’s great to sleep in the alpine open above 2000m and just roll over and see the sun rise.

One of the things I really like to do is play with shape and form in nature.

This struck me as being kinda cool snow melting into a tarn. Reflection too. What do you think??

Sun cups are formed by the sun radiation. Sometimes they provide great steps and on those early alpine mornings they freeze so you need crampons. If you look close you can see red algae in the snow its not blood from ski accidents but ….
… Red snow algae is a unicellular, photosynthetic plant which, in the spring, accumulates on the surface and within the upper 20 to 25 cm of old snow. It is concentrated in shallow depressions where its dark colour absorbs solar heat and further deepens the growing “sun cups.” Under a microscope each spherical cell is seen to be about 4 times the size of a human red blood cell. Their thick walls and bright red carotenoid pigment help protect delicate cells from intense ultraviolet radiation.

for more on red algae go here whistlernaturalists.ca are a great group with tonnes of info.

Adventure in the Yukon in Canada’s north. We Mtb -ed a portion of the Canol Road a great trip in wild tundra land with caribou and the Grizzly. Lots of river crossings most shallow. You have to resourceful and independent. Rescue is difficult. A sat phone might be nice … we did not have one. Few people in a vast tundra-ed landscape.

The Canol was put through in 1942 as an access road for an oil pipeline that was barely used. Cost millions of 1942 dollars. There are some remnant leaks and dumps of military vehicles enroute we just about made it half way and the were beset with a broken derailleur.

It seems a bit odd but in Eastern Canada today its warm on the west coast its snowing.

So I thought I’d post this contrasting shot today … Manatee echos warmth, the mammal is found in Florida, they may even be a threatened species there I can’t remember. I do remember seeing pictures of them with prop blades etched into their skin. They are slow moving and come to the surface every-once-in-a-while to get air. And get hit by boats towing water skiers
They like warm water

So the Manatee Range in BC west of Pemberton just north of Whistler got its name because a few of the peaks looked like the beasts + the first people that skied into this area named the peaks in the 1960’s had a very cold trip so it may of reminded them of warmer climes.

Coast Mountain explorer John Clarke a modern day John Muir who my friend Lisa Baile is writing a book about ….. was on that trip his first expedition … he went on the trip with one of those old fibre fill/cotton sleeping bags you know the ones with the duck hunters on the flannel interior… and froze his butt off. He said it took him a week to warm up after he came home from the trip.

This photo was from a climbing trip into the area, we used skis to get around notw the suncups. A tarn is a small alpine pond. Note also in the photo where some of the cornices have melted off probably causing avalanches earlier in the season. This area is used by heli-skiers in the winter.

Here’s some recent news from my geologist buddy Marco.

The plate displacement during the recent Japan quake was roughly 27 metres, of which 7 metres were vertical movement, so the starter wave was already that high. The wave made it more than 10 miles inland in places. A wave traveling through deep water will not change its wavelength while its traveling, but only once it hits the shallows. The travel time is quite extreme, pretty well 1000 kph, or slightly less, so in the case of the Cascadia fault, the wave would arrive only 5 minutes later on the West Coast of Vancouver island. The Japanese fault is pretty close to the same distance the Cascadia Fault lays from Vancouver Island. Kind of sobering if you think about around the campfire on Vargas Island in the Clayoquot.

This is a valley. It is glacial. Carved out eons ago. A big U-shaped valley. It’s called Tchaikazan.

Super Crack of the Desert

“so singular so unique” symmetric cleaving the desert

This climb really inspired me. The art of nature aesthetics of the line and the excitement. This line was true, pure.

I had this picture, from a calender, in my room for years. The guy in the red t-shirt with the yellow Scottish lion on his back approaching the overhang it was adventure. This film is great.
Wiggins Webster Becker

Its an iphone app to make your iphone photos look square in a good way with some colour shifting that that puts an arty hit on your creation. Without of course going into Pshop to do it by an action or manually.

Many journalists are using this type of documentation as either backup or to augment their assignments in addition to the dslr.

Checkout Burn magazine

Hosting another workshop in May Weekend 25 Gabriola Island

Golden Ears Provincial Park

Rain January. The thing about the East side trail is that it follows Gold Creek till it becomes braided and meandering about 6km from the parking lot before it peters out.

The thing that’s great about it, is that no one is on the trail especially in the winter months.
In the summer the park is pretty busy ……. now no one.

Ride your bike like the shot shows. You can not ford this this tributary stream without taking off your boots if you’re hiking … with a bike you can power through…. don’t lose your balance though or you’ll get wet.

It was fetid but great with mist and rain enveloping us, mossy understory and some storybook settings deep in the trees where you expect a gnome or a hobbit to peer out. Ride it, I think its in my book mtb adventures in SWBC.

I rarely capture stills from video but I liked this one. Photos don’t have to be sharp to convey the atmosphere. I masked a couple of copies and digitally crafted the colour this what I got.

just posted this 2 months late filmed in a rainstorm camera d7000 in ziplock bag, marcus and I on a tear over rock water and trail.