Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Bucket List/An Extreme Adventurer is Born

In my first blog post, I mentioned my “Bucket List.” Many people are familiar with this wonderful concept, and many probably saw the Morgan Freeman/Jack Nicholson movie with the same title. It was that very movie that planted this idea in my life. My younger brother loves this movie, and made his own five-month-bucket-list, and I decided to make it lifelong. Unlike the Bucket List movie, I’m young and healthy, and I hopefully have more time to complete mine.

For those of you who don’t know what a “bucket list” is, it’s a list of things that one would like to accomplish before they “kick the bucket” (die). My bucket list has a few items that are not really related to my hunger for adventure, for instance, “have a library of 500 or more books”—though a really great book can take a person on an extraordinary adventure. The majority of my bucket list contains goals related to adventures. These include: stand under a waterfall, hike Angel’s Landing (in Zion National Park), visit all of the National Parks in Utah (Zion, Bryce, Canyonlands, Arches, Capital Reef), go rock climbing. Some of these I’ve already done, but I wouldn’t mind doing them over and over again.

The first item crossed off my bucket list, happened before I was even old enough to fully comprehend that someday I would die. I was about nine-years-old, in the summer of 1996, when my parents planned a trip to Zion National Park. This is where my desire for adventure was born. My mother grew up believing that Zion was “her park”. Her parents, my grandparents, were engaged there, and her family spent every Easter weekend of her childhood there. My five siblings and I grew up hearing these incredible stories about Upper, Middle, and Lower Emerald Pools, Weeping Rock, West Rim, East Rim, and Angel’s Landing. We were all so excited to finally get to see these places for ourselves.

They were all everything we had ever dreamed of. Our first visit to Zion did not include Angel’s Landing because my parents didn’t dare take an eight-month, two-year, five-year, 6-year, 9-year, and 11-year-old on such a dangerous hike. We eventually hiked that notorious trail, thirteen years later, but that story is for another time.

A lot of the trails we hiked had tadpole ponds, and we all had fun chasing them around the ponds. We left each trail soaking wet and covered in the infamous reddish-orange dirt that southern Utah is famous for. Weeping Rock must have been somewhat happy when we went, because it wasn’t weeping as hard as usual (according to my mom).

Emerald Pool was my favorite trail because I was born in May, making the emerald my birthstone. In my nine-year-old mind, I imagined a pool of little green gems. When we arrived at Emerald Pool, I didn’t see any green gems, but I did see a beautiful waterfall pouring into the most beautiful, bright-green pool below.

My first experience enjoying hiking in the great outdoors occurred in the summer of 1996, and during that summer adventure in Zion National Park, the Extreme Adventurer was born.

Until next week!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Simple Things

Adventures are all around us, everyday. Often people just don’t take the time to appreciate the beautiful backdrop of their everyday life. When you are stuck in traffic, do you stare at the license plate and taillights of the car in front of you? If so, next time, LOOK UP! Some of the most beautiful landscapes are observed by just looking up.

Oftentimes, our lives are so busy that we get depressed and feel that there is nothing beautiful left in the world anymore. We are so focused on the buttons of the car radio, the little beep telling us that we got a new e-mail, the vibration in our pockets informing us of the new text message, the clock making us aware that we have two minutes before we will be late for work (or that we are already five minutes late), the magazines telling us the newest diet secret we need to follow in order to look like the Photoshopped people on the cover that we forget to appreciate the extreme beauty in the world around us.

When we were children, we enjoyed lying on the grass trying to decipher the shapes of the clouds. We were not too busy to take the time to count the stars in the sky. We looked forward to weekend days spent hiking a short trail or enjoying the outdoors at the park. I challenge all of my readers to remember, once-in-a-while, to shut off your cell phones and computers, take off your watches, close your magazines, and enjoy the simple things that you did as child. Also find time, amongst the hustle and bustle of life, to JUST LOOK UP! Below, are some pictures that I’ve taken just by looking up.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The First Blog

Hi All!
This is my first blog, and I don't know how many people will actually read what I write. For those of you that do read this blog, I promise you detailed stories of adventures and beautiful pictures of the extremely awesome places that I visit.

I've lived in Utah all of my life, and nearly every morning when I see the sunrise over the Rocky Mountains, it takes my breath away. I love to hike in these beautiful mountains, and no matter how long I live, I will never tire of the majestic background of the beautiful mountains in Utah.

This Blog was inspired by a quote that I read from the homepage of (c). It says, "It's just a sport, I make it extreme!" Under this quote is an array of pictures featuring extreme sports--most of which I've never tried before, but have since been added to my "bucket list." also has a variety of sports clothes of the extreme kind, and after buying nearly all of them, my adventure fire was fed.

I promise to try and update this blog with at least one post a week.

Until Next Time!