We're almost ready. After numerous small trips (of escalating difficulty and complexity), skills work, planning sessions, gear shakedowns, shakedowns, and more shakedowns, we're on the homestretch. Within 72 hours, we'll all be headed for Colorado, and then New Mexico, for a two-week expedition. The training has paid off. We've managed to get a bunch of…Read more New Mexico or Bust
Long Overdue – A Camping Weekend on the Chesapeake
A gentle breeze blows through the tall pines that line the edges of the cliff. Waves lap against the cliff several hundred feet below, as the Chesapeake Bay slowly carves into land which once formed the bed of an inland sea, and still releases Miocene fossils onto the beach below. Canada geese erupt with a…Read more Long Overdue – A Camping Weekend on the Chesapeake
First Day of Spring, 2021
Happy to start to see some glimpses of normal human interaction again. These guys sure were happy to see each other. A great (but cold!) two nights out camping.
Times are strange. Even though a lot of what I like to do is, by its nature, remote - backpacking, canoeing/kayaking, sailing, etc - all these activities became extremely popular as soon as we started getting guidance not to congregate. The bars closed down and the trailheads clogged up. Add to that the challenges of…Read more COVID Camp
Campfires Make Everything Better
We had a pretty dreary weekend. Fortunately, we made the right call, with young, poorly equipped boys, to skip Friday night - that would have meant setting up and camping in a Nor'Easter. An inch and a half of rain, 30 mph wind, and 40 deg. Not a good first experience. Even with the decision to…Read more Campfires Make Everything Better
Sailing Intro, Under Harsh Conditions
We had the opportunity this weekend to get some boys out on a Pearson 37 sailboat, the designation 37 referring to its overall length, in feet. Weather was not great - 20 knots sustained, heavy rain which came at you horizontally, and 3-foot swells. Despite that, we went sailing! Two reefs in the main, a…Read more Sailing Intro, Under Harsh Conditions
It's not a big cat, but it's the first cat this guy has ever caught!
Early Morning Smoke
Morning sun shines through smoke from the breakfast campfire.
You can't have a true adventure without a little bit of risk. It's the exploration of something new and getting out of your comfort zone that builds memories! Don't turn back because something is a challenge - just understand and make sure you can accept the consequences of failure (like getting everything wet during a…Read more Boundaries
Pond Run (or… What Happened to Those New Backpackers)
It started off a little ominously. The morning was dreary, with a foggy overcast that threatened rain. We had assembled a team of 6 new backpackers, one with a few trips under his belt, and three experienced leaders, including myself. One of the crew lost a split ring off a cotter pin on his older…Read more Pond Run (or… What Happened to Those New Backpackers)
Imagining the Possibilities
Happy December, everybody! It's hard to believe we've come all the way around to the end of the year again, but happy to have completed the journey. For whatever reason, this time of year always stirs a wanderlust in me for getting out on the trail somewhere. It may be a conditioned response - with…Read more Imagining the Possibilities
This may be a little to exact for this week's challenge, but hey, it's Science Fair season! One of my sons has been experimenting with the chemistry that creates cool light - along the bioluminescence capabilities of fireflies (lightning bugs), jellyfish, and our own man-made glow sticks, generally referred to as chemiluminescence. After several iterations…Read more Experiments!
Lunch and Learn
One of the reasons I haven't been posting a lot lately is that I've had another outlet, and I wanted to take a moment to thank St. Mary's County Public Schools and the wonderful staff that keep school programs going over the summer. (And for giving me pretty much ALL the Twitter traffic I've had…Read more Lunch and Learn
Berries, Snakes and Schools
Last weekend, as we were finishing our quest for blackberries, leaving the farm shop with buckets in hand, we met a middle-aged couple walking in from the parking lot. The woman asked, "Were they easy to pick?" We had to say yes to that - we'd picked far more than we intended, actually. The berries were big and ripe,…Read more Berries, Snakes and Schools
Bear! (Stories from Summer Camp)
If you've seen some of my recent photos, you know I enjoy supporting Scout summer camp. It's a great learning experience for the boys, a great opportunity to bond, become a team, and learn skills like shooting, boating, first aid and lifesaving, pioneering, orienteering, etc, etc. During the week we were there, we were fortunate…Read more Bear! (Stories from Summer Camp)