This is my journal from part of a longer Minnesota adventure that didn't quite go according to plan, when my backcountry travel buddy and I decided to canoe through the Boundary Waters rather than backpack the overgrown, hard-to-follow Border Route Trail.
Merriam Crater (aka Merriam Mountain) is one of the largest cinder cone hills of the San Francisco Volcanic Field surrounding Mt. Humphrey's. You can hike or drive to the top for incredible views of the San Francisco Peaks and Northern Arizona.
This journal entry is from my first climb up the Humphrey's Trail to the summit of Arizona's highest peak at 12,633 feet. I've done this hike too many times to count since then, in all sorts of conditions. This is not a 9-mile hike to take lightly, given the altitude and potential weather conditions
The Sunset Trail climbs gradually to a ridge where you'll enjoy great views of Mt. Humphrey's (12,633 feet) before continuing on to Mount Elden's summit plateau.
This is my journal from my 5-day backpacking (and bushwhacking) trip on northern Minnesota's seldom-used, 41-mile Kekekabic Trail. This was the first part of a longer backpacking trip.
This is my journal from my 6-day end-to-end hike of the 70-mile Laurel Highlands Trail in southwestern Pennsylvania, years ago.
A 9-mile out-and-back wilderness hike on the Kachina Trail in the Kachina Peaks Wilderness, Coconino National Forest, near Flagstaff.
My trip report from a 17-mile loop hike including the Weatherford Trail in San Francisco Peaks near Flagstaff, AZ
This is a story I wrote about my six-day backpacking trip in Wyoming's Wind River Range with five friends from Pennsylvania.
Zevia is a calorie-free soda made with stevia, a natural, no-calorie replacement for sugar that does not affect blood glucose. This product is available in many flavors and with or without caffeine.
Written by a member of the only family known to have survived the Holocaust intact. I met author Doris Martin here in Flagstaff, Arizona, where she lives with her husband.
A simple (and cute) little kitchen accessory for cooking eggs and other round foods, and a recipe to go with it. See also some other matching accessories with happy egg faces.
A light and chewy, low-fat and lower calorie version of a chocolate brownie
A lowfat version of chocolate chip cake
Burn extra calories and improve your circulation while you sit at your desk with this simple pedaler.
A light and fluffy pumpkin cookie recipe with suggested substitutions (to make them lower in fat and calories) and additions (to add some calories back in ... and make them taste yummier).
A review and overview of the Fenix headlamp I use for SAR, camping and hiking
When you can't think of what to get that special someone, give them something for their four-legged family member. Here are some ideas.
More than just a sugar cookie
An easy, tasty and healthy slow-cooker meal
Memories of Mad Libs, various occasions for and versions of the classic word game, and a little Mad Libs history
Improve your relationship with this fun, helpful and eye-opening book for all couples, married or not.
A review of the "revolutionary system for stress-free living" and the book called "The Tapping Solution," based on my personal experience with ETF
A buyer's review of the Copco Coffee Cab Rolling Countertop Small Appliance Stand.
A kitchen accessory review and other recommended products by Oxo
The campsite kitchen organizer by Camp Chef
An Arizona animal rescue organization bringing people and pets together ... carefully
Millions of Years Under Your Feet in the City of Romeo and Juliette
Sparkle and shimmer, Bohemian style
A fundraising event for the American Cancer Society ... and a fun thing to do. It's great exercise too!
Finding your way back with a small, simple device
What to see and do in Venice if you're staying for just a day or two -- some suggestions (and pictures) from our own short stay in this fascinating maze of a city
Unusual places on and off the beaten path, all over the state, and the guidebook that can show you the way to them all
Each year, the National Park welcomes plein air painters from near and far for a fundraising event. Other than the purchase price of paintings, the multi-day event is free with entry to Grand Canyon.
Stories from my father, who served aboard a flagship in the South Pacific during the second World War.
With our trip to Italy coming up, we decided to try some store-bought gelato here at home in Arizona beforehand, so we'd know what we had to look forward to overseas.
A fun and educational, worldwide pastime for children and adults -- a great activity for the whole family to enjoy together -- and the "tools" you'll need to go treasure hunting
About the world-famous fruit from the Mediterranean and a virtual tour from our own trip to these grove-covered coastal slopes.
True stories about SAR volunteers who come to the aid of those in need, around the clock throughout the year
There's a lot to like about this mountain town at the base of the San Francisco Peaks. Here are some reasons to appreciate—or consider—living here.
Rules for flying, raising and lowering the United States flag
Recommended Flagstaff, Arizona, restaurants that offer outdoor seating
How to heal "happy tail"
Information and safety tips for hiking into the canyon during the hottest months of the year
A UNESCO World Heritage site in the capital city of Kathmandu
A trip down memory lane through the hairstyles of my teenage years
How to make homemade ice cream, frozen yogurt, sorbet and frozen drinks the easy way
A nutritious and delicious dish that's high in calcium and beta-carotene
Using leftover potatoes, stuffing and cranberry sauce the morning after
Shells from around the world -- what they are and how to identify them
Take a virtual tour of this geological, scenic gem, along with information, safety tips, and directions for making the trip yourself to this remote location.
Assisting a search dog handler: the ultimate test for a multi-tasker
A rainbow of kitchen gadgets, from mixers and blenders to coffee and ice cream makers in red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple
Making sense of all the features of handheld GPS units
Meet Dick, a northern Mockingbird in the Jefferson White House, along with information about the rest of Dick's kind and other presidential pets
Information about this somewhat unusual flavor, with recommended red velvet recipes
Springtime festivals, fairs and other festivities all over the state of Arizona
Get creative with Lincoln Logs
What to eat -- and not eat -- if your bad cholesterol and triglycerides are high
Organize the kitchen and reduce waste and save money.
August 8th is the day to celebrate this versatile edible. Here's some background on this beloved national holiday and suggestions for spreading the joy (and excess produce).
The building and the cow, then and now
Grand Falls, also known as "Chocolate Falls," is located on Navajo Nation land at the southwest corner of the Reservation about a 45-minute drive from my home in Flagstaff.
Healthier choices and tasty substitutes in the cheese department
Tips for getting hummingbirds out of the house safely
From Hootie and the Blowfish to a country solo artist, Darius Rucker is a great singer and fun entertainer. This is an overview and review of one of his concerts, his band, and his music.
Places to camp near the park if the campgrounds in Yosemite are full, or if you want to pay less
Tips and suggestions to make the world-famous walk to Machu Picchu the trip of a lifetime
Leave this gear at home when heading out on any long-distance hike and even most short backpacking trips.
A classic riding toy popular since the 1970s, now with more models to choose from, for boys and girls
The creative game for all ages, great for parties, family play, or even playing on your own
How to write effective dialogue that sounds natural, moves the narrative along, and is punctuated properly
A selection of photos from my own hikes in the Grand Canyon and suggested photographic books from this natural wonder of the world.
Suggestions for making your own geocaching containers from items found around the house, along with some cache containers available commercially.
Tracking how I drive with an automated device -- Will I save on my auto insurance? Find out here and share your opinions and experience with DriveWise or a similar program.
One hundred things just weren't enough.
Or is there a difference at all? Get the answer to this burning question here.
A simple but delicious breakfast bagel sandwich, and a lower fat/lower calorie version with Weight Watcher's points
Recommended tools, toys, t-shirts and other useful things for those who like to find and hide caches, all over the world
All about the Millennium Trilogy by Stieg Larsson -- the books, the films and the fascinating character named Lisbeth
How to make your own gift coupon book for all occasions.
One of my favorite games growing up (and then some), now in both the classic and new versions and a pocket-sized game too
A dayhike to the O'Leary Lookout.
The Conterra SCARAB: A lightweight, easy to use, multi-purpose piece of rope rescue gear
Meet some of the characters of Grand Canyon's human history.
Find out where to tango, two-step, salsa, samba and swing dance (and then some) all around town.
See Search & Rescue in action in actual video footage from missions, interviews and training exercises, from SAR teams around the world.
This is my secret bucket list ... so don't look!
Search and Rescue dogs and their handlers train in Flagstaff and Heber, Arizona.
A pictorial guide of one of my favorite (long) dayhikes from -- and back to -- the South Rim of Grand Canyon
Get transported back and forth in time through these popular (and some not-so-well-known) time travel films
A healthy, tasty meal or side dish
The answer to this question and other presidential trivia
Information about full and half marathons in the Rock 'n' Roll series, all over the U.S., and course videos
A product review and look at other It's a 10 options
Try taco soup -- or stew, more like -- for a hearty, delicious and nutritous slow cooker meal
Search and Rescue on horseback: a listing of teams and posses in the United States and links to their websites or other contact information
Photos and information about a class for those involved with technical, or high-angle rock) rescue
Exercise your mind and have some fun with verbal memory games and brain teasers. Here are some suggestions and instructions.
Fun turkey outfits for Halloween, Thanksgiving ... anytime you feel like dressing up as a gobbler
A short, beautiful Flagstaff hike with a lot to see along the way
Easy to moderate Flagstaff hikes, 5 miles or less
The best places to eat in Flagstaff ... according to me. But there's a poll for each restaurant for others to weigh in on these local eateries.
With firsthand knowledge of this phenomenon, I share the science behind and solutions to exploding eggs.
My sweet Sassafrass, the dog who was my best friend for 15 years. I created this page as part of a personal pet page content on another website.
Information about the little rock-and-roll singer with the big voice
A musical trip down memory lane
Also commonly known as deviled eggs, stuffed eggs are a favorite staple at potlucks, parties and picnics. But they're not all the same. Some recipes, like this one, have a little twist or addition.
Anyone can be an "expert" on Weegy.com and maybe even make some extra pocket change at the same time.
American trekkers who disappeared abroad. Some have since been found -- some alive, some not -- and others have never been located. Here are the stories....
Considerations and opinions about going solo in the backcountry -- what do you think?
True stories about search dogs and their human partners
Get away from the crazy, busy capital of Kathmandu and enjoy some R&R and outdoor activities in the smaller city of Pokhara in the foothills of the Himalayas.
Photographs of a colorful mix of cultures
It was years ago and more than 2,000 miles, but I remember the six-month journey in such detail. Here are some highlights from my thru-hike ... something I hope to do again someday.
Making our way through "The Jug," a slot canyon along Salome Creek: a trip report
Photos and information from a technical rock rescue training class for Search and Rescue personnel and other first responders
Sites for hikers, backpackers, campers and anyone else who loves outdoor recreation
Paddling a flatwater stretch of the Colorado River on the Arizona-Nevada border and the hot springs and other points of interest you'll find along the way
MSR Denali vs MSR Lightning Ascent snowshoes, along with snowshoe accessories
A collection of articles and information about Flagstaff and the surrounding area
A virtual tour of the highest city along the "Mother Road" and what you'll see and find along this remaining, rather short stretch of Route 66
My three-month adventure in Nepal: An invitation from the country's only Search and Rescue team
About getting a passport and travel visa, immunizations, currency exchange, airline travel and more information for travel to and within Nepal
Passing the first white blaze on January 1: What that would be like and some folks who've been there, done that, and kept going.
See geology at its best in the Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness in northern Arizona.
The annual gathering of Appalachian trail hikers, from those who dayhike to those who hike the A.T. from end to end.
Recommendations and reasons for wearing goofy and some not-so-goofy -- but still really cool (and warm!) -- fleece winter hats
Pranks and gags from my own years at summer camp and ideas from other masters of the art of the practical joke
How the device works, and stories of how the technology has been used and misused in the backcountry
Things to do when the mercury drops and the snow falls in Flagstaff
Sharing my own fears -- and others -- and what they mean
An annual long weekend of Search and Rescue classes and "tracks"
An overview of Art Walk on the first Friday of each month in Flagstaff, Arizona
Learn how to line dance at home before taking your moves to the local hitchin' post. Here are some suggested videos and tutorials and some tips.
Learn to follow footprints and other types of clues in all types of terrain.
Where to access online law enforcement and EMS scanners around the world to listen to and how to decipher some of the code talk
Part 1 of a four-part series on how to use a handheld GPS unit.
Part 4 of my four-part series on how to navigate with a handheld GPS
Part 3 of a four-part series on how to navigate with a handheld GPS
Part 2 of a four-part series on how to navigate with a handheld GPS
Tips for frugal living, budgeting and trimming the fat
Backpacking equipment recommended by some of the biggest gear-heads and most experienced hikers that I know
When lightning strikes and two young girls become separated from their older companion, an afternoon hike in the Sierras turns into a desperate struggle to survive.
Backpacking off Grand Canyon's beaten paths: My favorite rim-to-river hike on the South Rim
Incident, articles and information about being stranded in a commercial airline on the tarmac, and the travelers' Bill of Rights
Short fiction narrated by a girl called Mouse ... and the novel this short story came from
A coming of age story narrated by a girl called "Mouse" -- an excerpt from the novel "A Picket Fence in Pawpaw"
What to see and do in this water-based national park in northern Minnesota and other visitor information
Traveling back in time to the days of the Voyageurs' Rendezvous in northern Minnesota--an annual event
Information and photos of our trip half a mile below the earth's surface in a Minnesota mine shaft
Lots of "greenish-yellow" things--for you, for your home, and your yard
A fictional SAR story ... but a lot like the real thing
A harness, helmet, gloves, rappel device, and other rock/rope rescue equipment, especially for first responders
From Nashville to Phoenix: The plane ride I'll never forget and what happened afterwards
Our canoe-camping adventure in northern Minnesota's BWCAW, with tips and information for doing this trip yourself.
Travelers, here are some things to think about before closing the door behind you.
Things to think about before you take your first step on the A.T. bound for the other end of the trail
Technical rescue training with Search & Rescue: Learning to belay
Outdoor public murals, sculptures and other art you'll see around the city of Flagstaff
What to see and do in the heart of downtown Flagstaff, Arizona
Tips and techniques for using hiking poles, and recommended brands and models, from a hiker who's used them for thousands of miles.
All aboard this pictorial review of this scenic train ride from Durango to Silverton, Colorado, and back.
Recommended hiking trails in and around the mountain town of Ouray
Free fresh air vacations for inner city youth
As an A.T. thru-hiker (and section- and day-hiker too), these are the Appalachian Trail guides, firsthand accounts and documentaries I recommend to anyone planning to hike this infamous footpath.
Read the first chapter of my second novel, a story of small-town secrets and youthful innocence giving way to adult wisdom.
A Jazzercise taping at La Quinto Resort in California -- an overview and review of the event, the classes and the location
Photos and costs of our home renovation on a budget
Technical rescue training with Search & Rescue: mechanical advantage, pulley systems, and packaging the patient for a raise.
My favorite keepsakes and their stories about us
Don't touch that thermostat! Warm up your feet first with soft and toasty down booties like these. There are sizes and styles for men, women, unisex, and children.
Fleece for your bod', fleece for your head, fleece for your feet and fleece for your bed. Fleece for your hands, fleece for your face, fleece for your pet and any ol' place.
My favorite movies that have something (or a lot) to do with submarines ... and a bunch more where those came from
This is a coming of age story about a small town's family secrets. This book is suitable for both adults and young adults alike.
Canoe-camping and portaging in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota
Information, tips, and suggested gear for section-hiking the CT based on our hike from Silverton to Durango, Colorado
SAR in 140 characters or less
Technical rescue training with my teammates from Coconino County Sheriff's Search and Rescue team.
Potentially life-saving gear hikers and other backcountry users should carry—some of it in the "just in case" category—whenever they hit the trail.
Join me in looking at the bright side of life, starting with these 100 things I'm thankful for.
Work/living arrangements with one main thing in common: free housing
Technical rescue training with my Search & Rescue team.
Theories about the disappearance of artist and poet, Everett Ruess
How to navigate on land without the use of instruments or anything but a map and some common sense skills.
From fine arts and festivals to the outdoors and great places to eat, these are just some of the activities and destinations I recommend when you're hanging around in Flagstaff.
Tips and ideas for improving the look of your produce stand or farmer's market table and for increasing your sales
Literary fiction at its best: a chronological list and summaries of Anne Tyler's novels
Within the boundaries of a world peopled by the troubled souls who come to 4991 Hopewell Street, and by one devoted assistant, a tale of self-discovery and redemption unfolds....
A 24-hour pack for Search and Rescue personnel (and anyone else who wants to be prepared for twenty-four hours in the backcountry).
Besides the big event of the day--me making my appearance on the world stage--other things actually happened on 3/28/69. Here are a handful of them and other highlights from that year.
See how we make this classic Mexican meal, including the quick and easy way and the totally DIY method from the ground (that is, our garden) up.
Information and remedies for flatulent pups (and some accessories too!)
Information about long-distance footpaths around the globe, grouped by continent. Have you hiked any of these trails or routes? Want to?
Recommended gear for preparedness on the trail, from a member of a Search & Rescue team, who sees a lot of people who could have avoided (or at least alleviated) problems with proper equipment
How to navigate with a map and compass, with an overview of types of maps, compass parts, declination, intersection and resection.
Tips for keeping track of your cell phone and what to do if it does turn up missing
Read the pros and cons, the polarized opinions, and weigh in on this bit of English grammar.
Things to think about before venturing into the backcountry, brought to you by a Search and Rescue volunteer who sees a lot of people who made one or more of these mistakes.
From south to north—or north to south—in one day, one week, or more.