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    Dirtbag Diaries: Tales of Terror Volume 3

    by Fitz & Becca Cahall

    DBD_Tales_of_TerrorEver walked through the woods late at night and felt like you were being followed? Had a strange feeling about someone you just met? Or had an encounter with the strictly inexplicable that led you, abruptly, to pack up and bail? Often, we rationalize these instincts – just a bird in the trees cracking limbs, just a strange fellow with good intentions, or, well, our senses simply must have failed us. But what about when these warning signals don’t go off? Today, Micah McNulty, Trey Johnson, and George Braun bring us stories of the times that intuition didn’t kick in when maybe it should have.

    Audio_graphic_20pxListen to "Tales of Terror Vol. 3"
    (mp3 - right-click to download)

    Visit dirtbagdiaries.com to hear or download the music from today's podcast. You can subscribe to the show via iTunes and RSS, or connect with the Dirtbag Diaries community on Facebook and Twitter.

    And just like last year, our cuddly receptionist, Joyce, is ready to greet you at Patagonia HQ today. Just don't make her cry...

    Continue reading "Dirtbag Diaries: Tales of Terror Volume 3" »

    Patagonia Books Presents an Interview with Audrey Sutherland, Author of Paddling North

    Sutherland_17_2

    Our good friend Dale Hope took the long drive from Town out to the North Shore of O‘ahu and sat down with Audrey Sutherland. While they sat on her deck (which overlooks the surf break named Jocko’s, named after her son Jock) they talked about Audrey’s new book, Paddling North, just out from Patagonia Books. Here’s that conversation.

    DALE HOPE: Tell me about your latest book, Paddling North.

    Pn_coverAUDREY SUTHERLAND: It’s a story of a trip I took from Ketchikan around Revillagigedo Island and then across to Prince of Wales Island. I then hitchhiked with my boat deflated and folded up from Hollis to Craig, and then continued on the water to Point Baker and across Sumner Strait. From there I went up to Kake and crossed over to Baranof Island, then on the outside of Chichagof Island. I ended up in Skagway via Icy Strait, Chatham Strait, and the Lynn Canal. That’s the actual boat right there, on the deck against the house.

    DALE HOPE: What inspired you to write about that trip?

    AUDREY SUTHERLAND: I keep journals on all my trips, whether the trip was to Moloka‘i or wherever. I have always kept a diary, even when I was a kid. I don’t know maybe it’s ego, but it helps if you want to remember something later. I’ve got diaries from way back, every trip I always kept a journal. Here’s one. What year is on there?

    DALE HOPE: Alaska Volume One. Wow, Audrey you wrote long stories, these are big journals.

    AUDREY SUTHERLAND: I wrote everyday in my journal: where I went, what I saw, what I ate….

    Continue reading "Patagonia Books Presents an Interview with Audrey Sutherland, Author of Paddling North" »

    Stand Up Paddling the Rivers of Australia with Zeb Walsh and Adam Colton

    Today we're featuring two rivers in Australia and two takes on stand up paddleboarding. First we'll hear about Zeb Walsh's (Patagonia Australia) one-day training run down the icy waters of the Snowy River. Then, Adam Colton (Long Treks on Skate Decks) takes us on a 30-day trip down the Murray.

    A Man In Snowy River 

    by Patagonia Australia & Zeb Walsh

    Snowy-river-paddle-705x466

    He was hard and tough and wiry — just the sort that won’t say die
    There was courage in his quick impatient tread;
    And he bore the badge of gameness in his bright and fiery eye,
    And the proud and lofty carriage of his head.

    Originating from the high mountain peak of Kosciuszko, and draining down through the Eastern Slopes, The Snowy River winds 352 KM before reaching the Bass Strait.

    In far East Gippsland, an athletic physique approaches the shores, lead by an ambitious spirit and determination. His kind eyes intercept the flowing waters. This land is a part of Zeb’s birthright and what better way to connect with the river than to follow its flow. Setting out on a stand-up, paddling from Orbost, 20km downstream but into a nasty head wind, all the way to Marlo.

    Continue reading "Stand Up Paddling the Rivers of Australia with Zeb Walsh and Adam Colton" »

    Dirtbag Diaries: Stepping Stones

    by Fitz & Becca Cahall

    DBD_Ep58Jessie Stone has a resume that would make any dirtbag proud -- raft guide, pro whitewater kayaker and member of the US freestyle kayak team. At the end of that list is medical doctor. And the director of the Soft Power Health Clinic in Uganda. She is a career shape shifter. who followed her passions and ended up in an unexpected place. How do you know when it's time to step out of the current and follow an alternative path? Trevor Clark traveled to Uganda to tell Jessie's story.

    Audio_graphic_20pxListen to "Stepping Stones"
    (mp3 - right-click to download)


    Visit dirtbagdiaries.com for links to download the music from "Stepping Stones" or to hear past episodes of the podcast. You can subscribe to the show via iTunes and RSS, or connect with the Dirtbag Diaries community on Facebook and Twitter.

    [Graphic by Walker Cahall]

     

    Misty Fjords and Whales - An Excerpt from "Paddling North" by Audrey Sutherland

    by Audrey Sutherland

    Pn_ch3

    Patagonia Books is proud to announce our latest release, Audrey Sutherland’s new book
    Paddling North, which describes her solo voyages along Alaska’s southeast coast in a nine-foot inflatable kayak. The book includes maps by Compass Projections and illustrations by Yoshiko Yamamoto and recipes by the author. Enjoy an excerpt from Chapter 3, "Misty Fjords and Whales."

    “Suddenly there was a big water sound ahead. It was not the sound of a salmon jumping. It was not a seal spotting me and doing an instant up-and-over dive. This was a huge volume of water. Coming toward me were two whales, heading south down the channel. Not the humpbacks that I knew from Hawai‘i, these were pure black, with a high narrow dorsal fin and a 10-foot span between spout and fin. Killer whales! I spun away and paddled fast toward the cliff, but there was no place to get ashore. The critic on my shoulder scolded the yellow-bellied paddler. “You don’t have to carry the yellow color scheme that far.” I turned and stroked parallel to them, but they had already passed.

    Disappointed, I turned back to the search for a hot spring. Five miles south of Saks Cove, said the USGS thermal springs book, and 200 feet inland. I came to a cove and landed. The major stream was farther south than the map indicated, but I found a smaller one that seemed possible, of a size that might have bubbled from just one spring. Its water was icy, but it would chill fast on this ground, so I crawled upstream, through the spiny devil’s club, under logs, through the water. Finally I stopped; 300 feet in half an hour. No steaming vapor showed ahead, no sign of the red algae that often grows near hot springs. I had no assurance a hot spring was still bubbling. The Geological Survey report was from a 1917 observation, and the 1980 NOAA report on hot springs of Alaska didn’t mention it. Until further reconnaissance, it will remain a mystery. I paddled on.

    Continue reading "Misty Fjords and Whales - An Excerpt from "Paddling North" by Audrey Sutherland" »

    Dirtbag Diaries: Live From 5Point Vol. 3

    by Fitz & Becca Cahall

    DBD_5PFF5Point Film Festival invited us back for another live Dirtbag Diaries. And of course, we said, "Yes!" We invited four people up on stage to to talk about a moment in their lives when it all seemed to go wrong. And where those moments have led them, as the effects have rippled through their lives. Today we present the first two stories. At 23, free skier Josh Dueck overshot the landing of a jump and fell 100 feet out of the air. He returned to skiing the following winter in a sit ski. And he rips! You owe it to yourself to watch The Freedom Chair and Josh hucking a backflip.

    Kayaker Chris Korbulic was nearing the end of a 7 week trip through central Africa with Ben Stookesberry and Hendri Coetzee. After paddling the difficult stretch of the Lacuga River, a crocodile pulled Hendri underwater. The film Kadoma (full version available on iTunes) tells the story of their trip. Chris has continued to return to Africa pursuing the rivers that brought him together with Hendri.


    Audio_graphic_20pxListen to "Live From 5Point Vol. 3"
    (mp3 - right-click to download - contains some expletives)


    Visit dirtbagdiaries.com for links to download the music from "Live From 5Point Vol. 3" or to hear past episodes of the podcast. You can subscribe to the show via iTunes and RSS, or connect with the Dirtbag Diaries community on Facebook and Twitter.

    [Graphic by Walker Cahall]

    Dirtbag Diaries: Origins

    by Fitz & Becca Cahall

    Editor's note: Hard to believe it's been five years since The Dirtbag Diaries was born onto the Internet. There have been so many good stories, so many inspiring people. Now, we can't imagine an Internet (or this blog) without them. Thank you Fitz and Becca for all your hard work. And thank you to the fans of the show for your passionate support. Here's Fitz and here's to five more years:

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    The Dirtbag Diaries turns five. This also happens to be our 100th episode. To celebrate the occasion, we reached out to our collaborators, our contributors and our friends and asked for ideas. I pitched them a bunch of ideas. They shook their heads. Their response was resounding. "We want to hear your story, the story of the Diaries," they said. Our intern, Austin Siadak, stepped forward to do the interview and relay the story. The tables were turned. By nature, we like our creation stories simple. An idea appears in the void.  A light bulb goes off. The apple hits Sir Isaac Newton on the head. In reality, creation stories are messier, more complicated and more interesting than abbreviated elevator pitches. They are a sum of parts. So here goes.

    Audio_graphic_20pxListen to "Origins"
    (mp3 - right-click to download)

    Visit dirtbagdiaries.com for links to download the music from "Origins" or to hear past episodes of the podcast. You can subscribe to the show via iTunes and RSS, or connect with the Dirtbag Diaries community on Facebook and Twitter.

    [Graphic by Walker Cahall]

    Mokelumne River – Filming and Fighting for Wild and Scenic Designation

    by Mike E. Wier

    Mokelumne River 2

    For years, my brother and I had to sneak into one of our favorite sections of our home river, the mighty Mokelumne. The land surrounding both sides of this section of the river is owned by the East Bay Municipal Utility District. They had big “No Trespassing” signs up along their barbed wire fences.

    We, however, strongly considered the river to belong to everyone. So every once in a while we would float down through the rapids on inner tubes and stop in the beautiful and secluded pools to swim or try catch-and-release fly fishing. Along the way we’d check out the old miners’ trails and wild flowers, or stop at the ruins of the historic mining town of Middle Bar, or imagine we were Mewuk people catching Salmon in the river and admiring the giant blue oaks that produce so many acorns.

    Continue reading "Mokelumne River – Filming and Fighting for Wild and Scenic Designation" »

    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" »

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