All posts filed under: Essays

Eating Crickets and Climbing Bug — I mean, Big Walls

As the population of our world increases and the amount of space decreases, there seems to be a growing concern regarding sustainability. Movies, such as Food, Inc., and books, including Michael Pollen’s An Omnivore’s Dilemma, have increased awareness about the unsustainable practices of modern farming. Many people choose to lessen their impact and contribute to a more sustainable future. While some subsist on a vegetarian or vegan diet, others buy locally raised meats. And then there’s Meghan… Meghan Curry is a 29 year-old entomologist from Texas who eats bugs. That’s right – from Mealworm Pizza to Spinach Salad with Ant Larvae, this women isn’t afraid of a few extra legs. However, Meghan hasn’t always been a proponent of eating insects. After an academic debate about global nutrition and food sustainability turned her on to the idea, she has refocused her career from studying insects to promoting and educating the West about edible insects as a serious food source (also known as entomophagy). These new goals resulted in the birth of her LLC and website Bug Vivant. …

2015 Yosemite Facelift: Finding Beauty Behind the Trash

Yosemite Facelift is about showing our commitment to this important place and the experiences we have as a result of this place. People of all abilities and backgrounds are connected to this landscape. They travel from all over the world to have intimate experiences with the park. They learn and grow, not only as climbers, but as people, and somewhere along the way the granite walls and towering trees start to feel like home. What an incredible opportunity it is to be a part of a community willing to dedicate their time to preserving that experience for others. To read more about this year’s event head over to Rock and Ice Magazine to check out my article: Finding Beauty Behind the Trash

A Tour of our Tiny House on Wheels

Living in a tiny house is somewhat of an art. Every space has to have a purpose. Every item within that space must be carefully scrutinized as to whether it is truly necessary. At less than 60 square feet, a good deal of thought went into the design and set up of our van in order to make it a live-able space for not one, but two people. The design is extremely customized to our own personal needs, which we have dialed in over time and are constantly improving and tweaking. Our bedroom is accessible by the sliding door on the side of the van or through a sliding door in the wooden divider that separates the front seats from the rest of the van. Our bed, made of two crash pads and a piece of foam, sits on a raised platform, which allows ample room for gear underneath. While limited head room is definitely the biggest downside of our van, the amount of time we spend in bed is fairly limited (and almost entirely spent laying down), so the amount of gear …

Converting our GMC Safari

As the van slowly puttered up the hill, I watched the needle on the temperature gauge steadily rise higher and higher. At the top of the hill the Pontiac collapsed on the side of the road in a state of utter exhaustion. We knew the routine by now. Adam opened the hood in an effort to cool the engine, we waited for the temperature to lower, and then we continued on our way. A mechanic had already broke the bad news to us – it wasn’t worth fixing. There was no telling how long it may hold on for – could be a week, a few months, or even a year. After 15 minutes Adam closed the hood and we pulled back out onto the highway. Our Pontiac Montana wasn’t your average minivan. It’s metal frame contained years of memories. It carried Adam and I across the country three times, survived numerous pot hole covered dirt roads, and somewhere along the way, it had evolved into ‘home’. But, as we drove down the highway headed for Jackson, Wyoming, we …

Redefining Success

I tied into the rope and sat down to lace up my climbing shoes. I clapped my hands together and a cloud of chalk hovered in the air before me. I began picking my way up the steep limestone wall, placing my feet precisely on the tiny edges scattered like pennies on a sidewalk. The steep wall fueled a fire that had slowly started burning within my forearms. I paused as I reached a blank stretch of rock that blocked my next solid hand hold. I became acutely aware of the last bolt I had clipped, now just below my feet. My fingertips grew sweaty and slowly started peeling off the small edges. Shit, I’m going to fall. All hope of making the next move was lost as my body became rigid with fear. As I half-heartedly reached up for a sloping groove, gravity took hold and ripped me from the wall. At that moment I lost the one chance I had to onsight the route – but I was okay with that. When it …