The Cleanest Line

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    Spring Gardening

    by Crystal Thornburg-Homcy


    My husband Dave and I started our garden about five years ago. Now our garden operation is called Crave Greens. The name was inspired by the combination of Crystal and Dave. Our love for the natural environment and passion for cooking inspired us to get our hands dirty by growing as much of our own food as possible, and wanting to know exactly where our food was coming from. With the desire to bring fresh organic produce to the tables of friends and family, we hope to inspire others to start a small garden too.

    We hope to show others in our community that you don't need a big space to grow your own food, or to give up your daily life either. If anything, growing an organic garden will only improve your well-being. Currently we have two, raised garden beds. One is 6x10 feet and the other is 8x12 feet. We spend an average of 4-8 hours a week in the garden.

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    Back to Patagonia - Part 4

    by Crystal Thornburg-Homcy


    Crystal_Chile (5)


    After more than a week camping in Patagonia with Jamie Sterling, Jack McCoy, and Mel and Kenny, founders of 1% for the Planet member Sol Raiz Organics, along with their crew, we regrouped and repacked for the coast. While we were in Santiago packing our surfing gear, we heard that the nearby ski resort, Valle Nevado, still had snow and was closing for the season. We decided to make a day trip to visit the over 10,000-foot-high mountain.

    The drive up the mountain was as thrilling as hearing the “Wild Bull” breathing outside our tent. The sharp turns and steep cliffs with no guard rails looked down onto car cemeteries. With no coca leaves to chew on the altitude was getting the best of me; I closed my eyes and tried to relax. Our whole drive we didn’t see one patch of snow, just dirt. We were all wondering if there would actually be any snow at the top. I was ecstatic to get out of the car finally to discover a white-capped mountain with patches of mud. It had been almost eight years since I’d been snowboarding, a sport that I’ve love to do at least once a year my whole life growing up. I guess I had been so focused lately on traveling to other coastlines in search of waves that I neglected visiting snowy peaks.

    Continue reading "Back to Patagonia - Part 4" »

    Back to Patagonia - Part 3

    by Crystal Thornburg-Homcy

    I made my way through the Pumalín Park area in Patagonia. Fjord Quintupeu was my next destination along with fellow surfer Jamie Sterling, Sol Raiz Organics, and filmmaker Jack McCoy. We paddled our kayaks into the wind with the sun warming our faces while refreshing splashes of freezing water hit our faces. We had a day of paddling, passing by waterfalls, isolated ranches, salmon farms, and seal colonies. When we finally made our way to the entry of the Fjord Quintupeu, the sun was starting to slip behind tall peaks that were blanketed with deep emerald forests, revealing heaven-high waterfalls.

    [Above: Crystal Thornburg Homcy+Chile from The Wave Journal. Video: Jack McCoy & Erik Derman]

    We navigated through the fish farm to get to our resting point at the base of a waterfall in the Quintupeu Fjord. The crew was ready to warm our bones as the temperature was dropping fast. Our escort boat was far behind back at the port, hours away with the warm gear. We attempted to stay warm by gathering wood, putting our girl and boy scouts skills to work. We finally got a flame going on the soaked logs. As we began to warm up, we passed the time waiting for our boat by doing yoga on the beach, and keeping our fire alive. The clouds began to seep into the Fjord, and the darkness was setting in. Our boat was finally spotted on the horizon. This time, we set up camp under the stars with the rumbling sound of a waterfall instead of the “Wild Bull.”

    Continue reading "Back to Patagonia - Part 3" »

    Back to Patagonia - Part 2

    by Crystal Thornburg-Homcy


    As I packed my bags for my trip to Patagonia, reminiscing about my last visit over four years ago, I remembered the sudden shift of weather patterns from cold to hot, to snow and even rain. My activities would range from surfing, kayaking, hiking, snowboarding, to relaxing in the natural hot springs, and a few film festivals in the cities, so I had to pack accordingly. For my trip to Southern Chile, I had this Patagonia gear list in mind.

    1. Primo Down Jacket
    2. Fiona Parka
    3. 3/4-Sleeve Diviner Top
    4. Merino Sweater Coat
    5. Tranquila Leggings
    6. Expedition Weight Merino Hiking Mid Socks
    7. Rain Shadow Pants
    8. Lidia Jacket
    9. Rain Shadow Jacket
    10. Merino 3 Midweight Crew
    11. R4® Hooded Front-Zip Wetsuit
    12. Woolly Hat

    Editor's note: Patagonia surf ambassador Crystal Thornburg-Homcy follows up on her recent post, Back to Patagonia, with today's entry.

    I was invited to be part of the crew from 1% For The Planet member, Sol Raiz Organics, to head off on an adventure with world renowned cinematographer, Jack McCoy, and big-wave surfer, Jamie Sterling, to explore the path of our hero, Yvon Chouinard, and to experience the area that inspired him to name his outdoor gear company Patagonia.

    Continue reading "Back to Patagonia - Part 2" »

    A Weekend In Baja with Save The Waves Coalition


    It had been over five years since I was in Baja, experiencing its vast coastlines, colorful culture and fine tequila as part of the “Bend To Baja” crew; and what a great way to reunite with Baja than a perfect, sunny swell-filled weekend with the Save The Waves Coalition, a global nonprofit organization whose mission is to protect and preserve the coastal environment, with an emphasis on the surf zone.

    Editor's note: Patagonia surf ambassador and Hale'iwa store employee, Crystal Thornburg-Homcy, returns to the Cleanest Line with a story about a trip she took this summer with fellow ambassador Liz Clark.

    I brought along my longboard, 6’6” single-fin, bodysurf fins and rounded up, like-minded friends Liz Clark and Jon Swift for the trip. My goal was to discover more about what Save The Waves has accomplished this past year and what was in the works for the near future.

    [Northern Baja local surfers join our crew for the beach clean-up. All photos by by Crystal Thornburg-Homcy and Save The Waves Coalition]

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    Surfers for Cetaceans Chile Tour - Part 2

    _mg_5263_2 Patagonia surf ambassador Crystal Thornburg has sent another update from the road in Chile. Check out part one first if you missed it.

    [Showing off the Visual Petition in Valparaiso, Chile. Please consider adding your own photo to the petition if you haven't already. Photo courtesy of Surfers for Cetaceans]

    We are continuing our journey south with the EL MAR, ME ALMA tour in Chile for SURFERS FOR CETACEANS.

    Heading to Valparaiso we drove through the countryside watching the sun beams shine in between the grape vineyards extended to the horizon. Valparaiso is one of the largest port towns in Chile, and is known for its colorful murals and mosaics on every street corner. The town itself looks like a mosaic from afar with all the different colored houses lining the hillside. Artist and surfer Chris Del Moro joined the crew to contribute to the creative quiver. We made our way to the city center to unravel our Visual Petition banners to display in front of the “Armada De Chile” which drew a curious crowd.

    Continue reading "Surfers for Cetaceans Chile Tour - Part 2" »

    Caring for the Waimea Valley with Crystal Thornburg

    Img_1733_2 We all play in our local environments, but how many of us take the time to help care for them? Patagonia surf ambassador Crystal Thornburg shares this story about how she and some of the crew from Patagonia Hale'iwa have been volunteering to help restore a portion of the Waimea Valley.

    [Hale'iwa store manager Paul Carson, conservationist Laurent Pool, and Crystal Thornburg clear an invasive plant species from a pond in the Waimea Valley to make way for the 'Alae 'ula. Photo: Kelly Perry]

    Throughout the past several years, I have been volunteering in Waimea Valley on the north shore of Oahu, Hawaii with other Patagonia staff as part of the Patagonia Employee Internship Program. Just down the road from the Haleiwa store, Waimea Valley is known for its natural beauty surrounded by native, endangered, and indigenous plant and bird species.

    Continue reading "Caring for the Waimea Valley with Crystal Thornburg" »

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