I originally put white sands on the map because there are wile oryx, an African antelope, that were introduced and have been out there for a while. After asking around people started telling me that my chances of seeing one were pretty slim as there is so much desert and they are very shy. I also checked out some stone age ruins in the Chaco Valley. It's amazing to me that people lived in that high desert and were successful enough to build such large and elaborate structures. I think the builders would be proud that even today many walls are still standing.
Friday, January 1, 2016
This was a frustrating video because no matter what I did I could not capture the magnitude of the grand canyon. Nonetheless, I enjoyed finding my own little area on the edge of the canyon where I could sit and think away from all of the crowds. I stayed in the national park for a while and spent some time flint-knapping, which was really neat to do in such a sacred place. Grand Canyon ranked as one of my favorite, must-see, places on the trip. It's just so dang big!
Rattlesnakes are too cool! They're just such a unique type of snake and widely distributed throughout the USA. While visiting a childhood friend in Phoenix we hit the desert a couple nights and we turned up a few rattlers. I was especially excited to find the black-tailed rattler sitting on the rock. The Arizona desert was amazing and did not disappoint even though we only turned up a fraction of the amazing species that live out there. I'd definitely like to go back and be a little more thorough.
Southern California is weird. They have a giant saltwater sea, an off grip squatter's town, and mud volcanoes. Prior to visiting I had no clue about any of this. Probably one of the coolest things down there was meeting up with Rob. He is a man that just does things that he feels is right to do. I doesn't conform to what's normal and thinks independently. He had been back from Iraq and Syria a few months when I met him. He was over there fighting ISIS alongside the Kurds. We treat men and women that fight for our own country as heroes but to fight for another people in the name of justice is, in my opinion, indescribable. There is no greater love than to lay down your life for another. While he, of course, didn't die, he was wounded by shrapnel that got him in the face and much of his leg. He is well and healthy now. Everyone should go follow him on instragram @cavemanrob
This was one of the most magical places on the trip. I came here to see the world's largest tree but was met with much more than I bargained for. Within 15 minutes of entering the park I saw a bear and shortly after found another. Before this I had only gotten a glimpse at a bear in Yellowstone. These bears were all up in the oaks eating acorns. The next morning I got up early and B lined it to the General Sherman. I was uncontrollably excited and the path to the tree seemed to last forever. When I got there the forest was just quiet and there were very few people in the area. Before going I thought, if I got the chance it might be cool to climb this massive tree but upon arriving that thought was lost as I could feel it commanded far too much respect than to let the likes of myself to try clamoring up its trunk. The entire sequoia forest was absolutely mysterious and I loved every bit of it.
It's always a good time meeting up with new people that are interested in the same thing, especially when you are way out of your element. Having never been to California, I was basically clueless as to how to look for snakes there. I was fortunate enough to meet up with Demitri and we turned up this nice sized rattler. I have noticed that most nature lovers that you meet online are actually pretty cool.
I was fortunate enough to land a job as a valet in Tahoe and I ended up working there for two months. It was really nice to be in one place for a little bit after traveling for so long. I was able to explore around the lake on my weekends and discover some really sweet spots. In this video I take you around to some of my favorite spots and show off the beauty around this mountain lake.