Sunday, January 27, 2013

"Time To Wake Up..."

Maybe the first time I heard this on Outward Bound, I was tired and a bit grouchy, but now years later these words echo out with so many more memories and meanings...
Our Outward Bound leaders said it only a few times to us, then expected us to do so for one another. Responsibility and owning the moments were a big part of the lessons back then. These same Outward Bound mentors said this too when it was now time to concentrate, to really focus, and to be vigilant as we climbed and crossed over those high mountains. They quietly stated this as well when we struggled with our attitudes & beliefs about the adversities we were facing, and how they inspired us to forever find more within than we ever first realized...
Those many other Mountain & Sea Kayak Guides who I am also very grateful for, said this too in so many ways, as they shared and mentored those essential skills and elemental perceptions for being safe and sure of ourselves out there.
"Time to wake up...".
An informed, centered, quietly yet lively expression for learning.
These words have also taken on such meaning, as a mantra from my teachers who gently taught us about meditation. Then invited and challenged me in particular to practice this while I was actually out wandering the wild places.
We each awaken in our own ways out there don't we my Friends. As when below the stars, or gazing up too towards the rainbows following us. We eventually see what we did not before, amidst all the storms and up among our summits. We become more sentiently inspired and aware, like about the wild ones and their vulnerable lives.
Then everything from the crux's, the solo's, to the winds and waves, the edges and efforts, from resting under our tarps & tents - all become possibilities. Also to the canyons, mountains, coastlines, and northern lakes - which all invite us to awaken and further perceive & understand, to now distinguish and truly begin to know...
Even when I notice I've felt like my adventure day did not go as expected, usually due to health complications, then it also a time for waking up and being aware of the whole journey. Because difficulties are relative, and endurance can be more than fitness - as each and every one of the links under my 'Giving Back & Passing Forward' section courageously show us time and time again. They give name to what it means to be mindful of what is really important within it all...
"Time to wake up...", echoes out those beautifully attentive meanings.
"Take notice", quietly says the wild places. "Let ourselves see...", then invites our adventures.
Such an important yet subtle message.
When we do become even a bit more awake, and we are also no longer 'sleeping' in those ways, then we seek further edges, the challenges are so full of fun, the journeys are farther freedoms, the trails will all surely lead towards connection, and our attention can be seen in our shared smiles and epiphanies.
Time to awaken, an echo long ago from Outward Bound, now a readiness to carry on..... DSD

My appreciation again Dear Friends for sharing your images with us all.

Friday, January 25, 2013

"From Where We Started..."

"We shall not cease from exploration, and at the end of all exploring, will be to arrive where we started, and know the place for the first time...". T.S. Eliot
On Outward Bound, on these many adventures, over all these long wonderfully full years, we share in learning more regarding what the mountains, the forests, the oceans, and the canyons are all really about...
On Outward Bound, through such adventures, over these endlessly amazing seasons, we then share in the knowledge too about who we are truly becoming as we are out wandering...
For we learn so much about all of what is out there.
Then we discover as well that there is so much more within than ever first realized.
For as Henry miller wrote too: "Our destination is never a place, but rather a new way of looking at things...".
From gazing back upon where we each started .
Look at where we are now..... DSD

Dedicated to all those about to undertake their first Outward Bound course this year.

"Sharing Your Wonderful Inspiring Images..."

Thank you once more my Friends for allowing your wonderful inspiring images to be shared here!
My intention with including such images & pictures of beauty and awe, is in support of all the links on my blog under 'Giving Back & Passing Forward'. There will never be anything commercial about these musings.
I have always acknowledged that the vast majority of the images shared here were not created by me, as I am not talented in that way. Many have been suggestions provided by fellow adventurers, so I am unable at times to give specific acknowledgements unfortunately. If I can do this it will always occur as best I can right when such images are posted. I will also certainly acknowledge others work if you let me know, and then I will attribute creative efforts where they clearly belong.
It is with deep appreciation that your sharing images in this way is felt in support of those who are Adventuring For Another Reason . My whole adventure blog speaks to these initiatives.
You have such amazing pictures and metaphors within them, reflecting these links who give back and pass forward with their ongoing enduring efforts.
Please accept my sincere gratitude for your sharing and understanding in allowing for such support of them.
Thank you all so very, very much! DSD

Sunday, January 20, 2013

"This Old Weathered List....."

"Fortunately, more distant summits are always being discovered... Man throws a stone - his desire - into the unknown, then throws himself in pursuit." T. Cesen
Here is this weathered list I see before me. This very old weathered list. Just some scribblings on worn paper, but a precious thing it has become...
The ideas started long ago, even before my Outward Bound experiences. Sparks of thought, notes from being inspired, longings I was yet to really even understand.
This old well worn weathered list. But still does it always engage me. Especially when a new year dawns and during the beginnings of each kind of adventure season. Every spring too does it seem to call gently, yet invitingly and persistently as well. It almost feels at times too, that this old weathered list, has been like another kind of map and compass. Always there for navigation, for setting course, to keep oneself on track.
This weathered, folded, even a bit torn old list. It has aged, evolved, and shows the wear much as we all do. From objectives, to totals, check marks, and completions. Now it is changing once again more to an endearing tally.
This long old weathered list. Seemingly, wonderfully, amazingly endless. A never completed process it is. So happy am I that this is so. For a list like this is as much an adventure journey as our actual wanderings out among the wild places...
This old, composed, weathered list. I hold it in my hand, but it really has been what has supported me. Always full of hope, inspiration and wonder, enjoyment and awe, and endless enduring forever possible moments. For as J.B. MacKinnon wrote too: "A life list is, in the end, nothing more than a tool to look back on our lives and consider how we spent our brief moments on earth. And what if, in those final breaths, you realize - I never gave anything back...".
An old parchment of sorts is this listing. It has charted what was wanted from out there. Then pointed gently to so much more than was ever first realized from within ourselves here..... DSD

Friday, January 18, 2013

"Of Bearings..."

"We all have our own inner compass... The bearings are such that we can only read our own...".  Anon
An old compass, my even older weathered list, a new map, and now to follow the inspiration... DSD

Sunday, January 13, 2013

"We All Start Low..."

To have those people in our lives is so profoundly special. Our mountain Mentors, wild place Guides, and heroes too - whose experience, enthusiasm, wisdom, and perceptions become such examples for possible wonders for us to reach out and up for...
Yet, just as often, I am reminded that even with all their adventure achievements and heights attained, our wild place Mentors all started their outdoor lives on the valley floor as well. They all started their climbs towards personal goals as low as we each have.
Those we admire had humble beginnings much like ours.
We aspire to be so like them, and we are in many ways, because we all began down here. We all have shared in those lower levels of inexperience, and within the challenges of being a novice as well.
We are more alike than not.
We share in so much more than we ever may first realize.
They have gone so very far, been up so amazingly high, went for such long enduring distances too. And now they knowingly look back, and wonderfully encourage us on, as we set out on our own courses and bearings...
More is being shared here than the summits of our own adventure experiences.
To keep on going together in order to attain such meaningful wild place experiences, it can be important to gently realize, that we all start low..... DSD

Friday, January 11, 2013

"This Is What They Mean....."

"It was the emptiness... The vast, quiet solitude that caught and held me.
I thought: This is what they mean by wilderness.
The word took on a new dimension...". Colin Fletcher

We all still very much miss you Colin.
Every new dawning year, I look over your many books, and am so inspired yet again. Thank you Old Friend..... DSD

Sunday, January 06, 2013

"Stand Out Like Stone..."

"Life is mostly froth and bubble.
Two things stand out like stone.
Kindness in another's troubles.
Courage in your own..."  A. Lindsay

Lindsay's new years poem rings out true for us all... DSD

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

"In The Quieter Moments....."

Of course, there is the endless wonder among the summits, the thrills of the rafting, the intensity of lowering into those deep canyons, the anticipation of beaching our kayaks on an untouched coastal island. Countless special times of exhilaration, and excitement; so crystalline and amazing in their intensity and memory. Of course, they are very much a major 'why we do what we do' in our wild place adventures...
Yet, we very much know, we feel deeply too, that when we pause in between such wonderful stimulus and our euphoric responses, when we linger among those subtle quieter moments - that we just as often touch upon other elements within our longings, and for why these experiences call out to us...
These are the softer seconds, those more gentle moments of rest and repose, like when after our summit has been achieved, and we simply sit quietly within our elation, then surprisingly find that we may have tears too upon our smiling faces...
There are those slow pleasurable peaceful times, among the eddies of a river, even as the waters continue their fast journey, where we find a stillness among all this motion, and sense something else profoundly there too...
These are the moments within the calm we feel after the adrenalin has passed, once that cliff face has been climbed, and while our muscles and mental focus are still so resonating from all the energy and excitement. We notice an unruffled peace of mind there as well, even while still on the very edge of it all...
There is a deep tranquility that we touch then too as our sea kayak begins to slow , just before we beach, at the end of a very long day of wind & big waves, and endless paddling - finally, so finally, on that secluded coastal island, so far it seems from everything else...
These are our motionless moments out there. Among whatever trails and paths we have chosen, as we realize we are free from so much, and more free to do and feel and experience and then to know so much more, even without trying so hard...
Then there is that very special silence, of the deepest undisturbed desert canyon, or after those wild summer storms, or in the middle of a truly crisp cold winter night, or after the stirred ocean settles, or atop the apex of the peak of our most elusive summit. A silence that is so compelling, so very embracing, that it quietly, softly, speaks a language of its own to our heart, our spirit, our very being...
There is also the soothing sensation when resting in our sleeping bag, within the shelter of a tent, among the gear we each have carried, knowing the modest comfort of managing this small world we each have chosen to journey in...
There are the moments after the rainstorm and thunder, after so many days out on a long distance trek, on that last bit just before the trailhead, when the breeze of a quiet wind caresses our own and our partners faces - and when we share a smile much later across the warmth of a campfire...
So many beautiful, subtle sensations of quiet moments and memory.
So many eternal seconds of soothing stillness.
Patiently, quietly, awaiting for our return.
A very happy new year to you all my Friends..... DSD