Welcome to RaD photo bombs! We decided to try a little experiment. We picked a photo at random (above) from a recent adventure (our Labor Day exploration of Mount Moriah Wilderness), and then we each wrote about it for 5 minutes. The results are this post. We hope you enjoy. This was a super fun way for us to interact with our explorations in a new way and so there might be more photo story bombs in the future. Create some yourself and share them with us!
Through the field we walk, climbing higher into these distant mountains, a place we’ve dreamed about since before Larry joined our crew, but he cheerfully agreed and comes along smiling with us as we pass through the canyon bottom pines. Going up. Toward Moriah. It is a sparkling morning and we have no hurry and have no need to rush through a day, just to be in it, now, in this moment neither past nor future.
Little dog on the trail. Winding, walking, exploring this Earth. Little puffy clouds floating effortlessly in the soft blue ocean of sky. Life and death engulf us as we pass by. Tall ancient trees tower above, dwarfing us in both space and time. This is where I love to be.
by Daniel Montero
We have made a little spot alongside Pyramid Lake’s Monument Rock. The water level is very high now. there is almost no beach, and we have spread out our picnic in the shade of some trees along the shore underneath the bulbous northernmost of the two monument tufa structures. We settle in and Renee reads from Michael Branch's new book, How to Cuss in Western, to me.
We have been sick all weekend, irritable, if not grumpy, and the apartment a little too small but the states of ourselves a little too degraded to want to be outside. So we’ve hung on, but then, not sure if we’re feeling better or not, but not really caring either way because we are stir crazy, we decided to excursion out to Monument Rock on Pyramid Lake. It is one of our favorite Pyramid Lake places, high up on the northeast side with great views of the whole span of the lake from the Pyramid and Anaho Island, up to Tohakum, and the Needles up on the north end catch the light. Not only is it a beautiful place, it has a rich personal history for us as well, we’ve camped here many times, on bike tour or just for a night escape from Reno. We saw Perseids here one year with a group of friends, lying in our sleeping bags on the (much larger then) beach watching flares of space rock trace across the sky all night long.
But for one reason or another we haven’t stopped for a few years and it was a great pleasure to see the lake up high and the dry tree skeletons in the water again. There was a car when we arrived but the people left immediately and we had the rest of the afternoon to ourselves. We had our picnic and then left our things in the shade and wandered down along the shore, walking more in the lake than out.
Tufa is for me an extraordinary structure. It is hard, but appears soft. Fully mineral, but with a sense of movement to it that seems organic. It has geometric structure, but geometric structure as imagined by Gaudí, not by Euclid. Speaking of, I don’t know if Gaudí ever saw tufa, but if he had, I bet he would have loved it. The water was clear and the lake almost entirely still on a windless afternoon and so walking in the water with the tufa below was textural overload, a sense of walking in a dreamscape. We stopped out near the favorite of the tree skeletons that have been in that place for years, high up on the sand when I last walked by, but now protruding appendages from an otherwise still water. I've found a child's swimming kickboard along the shore, almost new despite its journey here, and when I resolve to go out to my favorite of the skeletons, Renee tells me I should use it. I don't think the water will get deep, but it does, and I do end up following Renee's directions and kicking myself out to the tree where i climb up onto its bone white truck and balance on its smooth surface. Pyramid is like that, a place whose very austereness is a sort of sensory overload when the mind tries to make sense of it. The whole overwhelms the particular almost completely. At least until you start to see the detail, and then you realize that all of this giant landscape is equally overloaded and you are just a little part of if, tiny, nothing.
We wandered among the afternoon, read in the shade and generally played on a Sunday afternoon. Toward sunset we climbed up on the tufa mounds and watched shadows ascend, filling the places the light had left for the day. Just another play, another day. From away the Monument Rocks look like full masses, but both of them have open spaces on their tops. Up over the lake, under a dome of open sky with the lake ranges as the audiences to our play in the amphitheaters, we are consecrated, ethereal.
The sun gone but our spirits balmed we started back toward Reno, toward our conceptions of the future, while behind us the lake slid into night.
by Daniel Montero
It's a little hard to believe that it is almost Labor Day weekend and summertime explorations are going to turn into fall explorations! It has been a wonderful, busy, hectic, nonstop, marvelous, and, well, in the words of Sublime, "it's summertime and the livin's easy."
The biggest, most hectic, and most marvelous event of the summer was that there was a RaD wedding! Renee and I tied the knot, with Larry as our ring bearer and at Chicken Creek, a camp on the family ranch, and the place where Renee and I first kissed! We'll post more about the wedding, but it was such a fun time and I'm so proud to wear Renee's ring (she made me my wedding ring, it's made out of wood!
I hope your summer was full of fun explorations as well and here's to another full fall, winter, spring, and beyond!
I was just chilling, hanging out on my sofa between my work shifts. It was a dreary spring afternoon. The sky was gray and threatening, then it started rumbling and thundering overhead. I opened the backdoor so I could have a better listen. I sat back on the couch, closed my eyes and listened to the rolling booms.
Slowly at first, the rain moved in though it quickly gained intensity and turned into an outright downpour. I got so excited, jumped up off the couch, grabbed my camera and ran to the front door to get a bit of video of the awesome rain storm. I opened the door wide, stepped out and started filming.
I filmed for a few moments then heard a large bang behind me. My first thought was “whoa that was loud thunder,” then quickly realized not thunder, but door. Next thought, “oh shit I didn’t unlock the door when I opened it,” I had planned to leave it open. But, as I forgot, the backdoor being open, will blow the front door shut. Oops!
Yes, I locked myself out of the house, in my socks, in the pouring rain, and I caught it all on film.
Thankfully awesome Dan came to my rescue.
Written by Renee Aldrich
Happy Birthday to this awesome fella! I’m so happy we found each other and we get to explore and play together in this crazy, beautiful world of ours.
Have a a great day, I love you so much!
For the most part we had a great 2017. Lots of Kayaking, hiking, riding, friends, family and more! We hope you had a great year and enjoy this video of our year. It's roughly 11 minutes long and even though it's mostly silent, the videos have some noise or us talking in it.
Written by Renee Aldrich
We are spending Christmas week in one of our favorite places, the northwestern corner of Nevada, at the base of the Pine Forest Range.
So far, we’ve enjoyed beautiful skies on our drive up, my mom and sister came to spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with us, on Christmas Day we all went up to one of our favorite spots—Chicken Creek, and on the day after Christmas we hiked up Bartlett Peak, a peak in the Black Rock Range. It’s now Wednesday morning and there’s still a lot of fun and adventure to be had!
We hope you all had a great Christmas and Holidays!
For those of you who don't know, this is us! A couple of midlife wanderers, desert rats, lovers of the unknown. We love exploring the dusty, less traveled paths that exist in this beautiful, crazy world we all call home!
Most anyone who knows us will know that Renee loves to handstand in all sort of funny/crazy locations and I love to take pictures of her (check out the Instagram hashtag #reneehandstands to see many of them). It is so amazing that we can be exhausted climbing a peak or swimming a river somewhere and yet—always—at the idea of a handstand, Renee is ready to go.
And the Internet teaches you all sorts of things, and one it taught us this year is that June 24 is International Handstand Day. So Renee was determined to celebrate it, and I was a more than happy accomplice. It fell on a day that we were slated to ride all day helping my family move cattle from one summer pasture to the next. A long, hot, incredibly exhausting day. But we were determined to play along, despite the incredulous comments of my mom, especially, who said I should do the handstands (to hilariously terrible results, although one day I will learn to at least approximate a handstand). So on a day that we were moving about three or four hundred cattle across the high desert mountains we stopped again and again for Renee to do handstands. I am so filled with fortune to spend the days of my life with a life-partner-in-crime so full of life and the fun of it.
This blog is dedicated to stories and ideas from our explorations. We hope you enjoy!
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.