27

September

0

John Muir Trail Thru-Hike Recap

For 18 days we backpacked from a parking lot in Yosemite Valley to Whitney Portal—a total of 223 miles—211 of these were on the John Muir Trail. Obtaining this difficult-to-get permit which starts at Happy Isles in the Valley, and finishes at the top of Mt. Whitney at 14,505 ft (4421m), is considered a win of “The Golden Ticket”, as thousands apply for this particular route each year. I had fast-packed most of the trail prior, but my 4 companions had not, nor had they backpacked in the wilderness for more than a few days at a time. At an age range of 56 to 60 years, we were all first-timers at doing the whole trail in one fell swoop. […]

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Category: Adventure

16

February

0

My (reluctant then jubilant!) Gardening Initiation

 I’m 56 and I’ve never really gardened. I’ve grown plants, sort of. Including an attempt at a tomato plant or two. This isn’t due to lack of interest perse, it is because there is only so much time in a day and I’ve never been lacking in finding other awesome ways to max out that time. But gardening is a grand way to commune with nature, you say. Prior to literally playing in the dirt, I’ve not had a shortage of getting down and dirty with nature! So gardening has always been on the back burner. Even though its February, ‘it’ thinks its spring here in Santa Cruz, so for the past month or so in the evenings I’ve headed […]

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Category: Adventure/Reflection

14

December

0

The Gift of Travel—Bhutan

     Its been 5 years since I first set foot in the iconic country of Bhutan. Significant events have transpired since that first life-changing day; Expedition Bhutan experienced the entire country west to east, a film was made of our journey—Crossing Bhutan, an international marathon and half marathon was created continues to thrive, two Bhutanese Expedition Bhutan team members have visited the U.S., fundraising efforts have supported women entrepreneurs in the country as well as the Bhutan Olympic Committee, and I’ve twice ridden one of the most grueling one-day cycling events on the planet. Over these past 5 years I’ve spent over a year living and volunteering in the country, making life-long friends while co-creating ever more initiatives which will help the country grow […]

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Category: Adventure

01

September

0

The 8th Tour of the Dragon (TOD), Pre-Race Thoughts

This years 160 mile mountain bike event across the country of Bhutan has 32 riders from multiple countries toeing the start line, including myself and one other woman. This number is down from past years registration numbers, which have averaged around 50. This is due in part to the conditions on the course this year—a lot of local riders have been scared away due to the possible odds not finishing. Bhutan is in the process of widening their main road that runs through the country. Right now about 70% of this road, that we’ll be riding on, is torn up and under construction. During monsoon season, which means daily rain, that equates to; land slides, mud bogs, and hard pack […]

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Category: Adventure

01

September

0

Tour of the Dragon Pre-Race Festivities Filled with Sacred Things

Today all the riders, in the audience of His Royal Highness Prince Jigyel Ugyen Wangchuk (HRH), went to a puja ceremony and toured two monasteries and temples, dating back to the 10th century. We then rode out to a sacred lake so HRH could light butter lamps, blessing the riders and praying for a safe passage on bikes across this geographically formidable country. It was a time for well wishes and bonding among riders. As I write this I am getting choked up—feeling so fortunate that I can take on this event in this country that I love so deeply. There are only two women in the race this year, a young Bhutanese rider and me (the one old enough […]

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Category: Adventure

28

August

0

Back in Bhutan

After dealing with a flight mix up (which involved calls to various embassies by friends in Bhutan and US to try and sort out where I was!!!) and a typhoon I have arrived in my beloved Bhutan, again. While on the drive from the airport to Thimphu I felt so much joy to be back in this beautiful, peaceful place. My heart is full. It was fitting that the first familiar face and hug was from Secretary General of Bhutan Olympic Committee! Bhutanese love to joke so I threw down my first at the airport when they did what is so common here—collect several people to do one task. “How many Bhutanese does it take to put a bike case […]

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Category: Adventure