On the Wild Side
Read up on featured locations and activities as well on how to best preserve our precious Wild Spaces.
some of the more popular trails. That's not to suggest that you should strike trails like Angels Landing and Half Dome from your bucket list. But often times there are amazing hikes that don't get nearly as much publicity as the paths [more] traveled. Making time for the path less traveled can as the poem claims, "make all the difference".
Take the Devil's Garden primitive trail in Arches National Park for example. This some what more challenging trail is not as popular as the hike to Delicate Arch or "Main" Devil's Garden trail, but it's perhaps one of the best hiking experiences within the park. The primitive trail offers a number of lesser known arches, a better opportunity for solitude, and an incredible sandstone playground that most visitors will never see.
What's particularly nice about the "primitive" trail is that it can easily be combined with the more popular "main" trail and include a visit to Landscape Arch, considered the largest natural arch in the world, as well as other popular arches, while still enjoying a unique and less trammeled section of Devil's Garden. Together there are more than seven miles of trails through the world class sandstone wilderness called Devil's Garden.
A few things to know before you go
1. The primitive trail is considered "strenuous" by the national park service, and includes a number of obstacles which require sure footing a bit of climbing, and occasionally wading through water.
2. The [time] less traveled may be even more important than taking the path less traveled. If possible, align your visit with the off season or weekdays. Avoid holidays as well as spring and fall breaks. Arches in particular can become very crowded. If these times are not compatible with your schedule, then try hiking early. The big crowds won't be up until later.
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Make time to get outside. Have fun. Enjoy the coming year with family and friends -- and reserve some quiet time for meditation and introspection. Perhaps to get you started; here's one of our favorite videos. It contains many scenes from our Wild Spaces travels as well as a song that has come to mean a great deal to us.
Happy New Year!!!!!!!
Landscape arch is an incredible 290 ft long which would have been impressive enough by itself, but it is also a mind-bogling 6 ft thin at its narrowest point. It's hard to believe that such a massive and delicate stone structure could be suspended over such a great distance. In fact, in 1991 a 76ft chuck fell from Landscape Arch and reduced it's delicate crest from 8ft thick to its current 6ft.
Eventually, time and erosion will win out and Landscape Arch will collapse and be little more than boulders and memories. Whether Landscape Arch's remaining time is measured in months, years, centuries or millennia is impossible to know, but while it stands it will remain a truly spectacular natural wonder.
If you want to see Landscape Arch in person (we highly recommend it), then make plans to travel to Arches National Park in Utah. This incredible landscape is home to more than 2000 natural arches. The highest concentration of such arches in the world. You'll find Landscape Arch less than a mile along the Devil's Garden trail. This portion of the Devil's Garden is accessible for all skill levels and features a number of other incredible arches and sandstone formations.
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Before Yellowstone was Yellowstone, it was called Wonderland. The stories of steaming earth, filled with strange spouting wells and painted pools sounded so fantastical to many 19th century americans that it reminded them of a popular novel of the time, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
Just like Alice and her travels in Wonderland many visitors may ask themselves, "Which path should I take?". "Well that all depends on where you want to go". There are paths a plenty in Yellowstone with countless little treasures to discover along the way.
Take Mystic Falls for example. This beautiful cascade is only a short introductory hike into Yellowstone's back-country. Watch the video for more information. It's a perfect hike for just about any skill level, and a gateway to even more wonders. Just remember Yellowstone is bear country. Be prepared. Know how to handle bear encounters, make noise when hiking. Travel in groups and carry bear spray in a very accessible location.
Make sure to stay tuned to At Home in Wild Spaces for more featured locations and travel tips, including bear safety. And check out the rest of our website. There's tons here for any lover of Wild Spaces.
to decorate their walls and patient's rooms with photographs and paintings of natural scenes in order to facilitate healing. But what of the rest of us who aren't currently recovering in a hospital? Are we in need of healing? -- Of course we are.
Depression and anxiety are unfortunately on the rise in our modern world. Some have contributed this development to the growing urbanization of our society. More than half of the world's population now lives in cities, and many of us are slowly becoming more and more isolated from the healing power of nature.
We've all heard the saying "When Life Gives You Lemons - Make Lemonade". Well, the answer of how to make the lemons of modern life into "healing lemonade" may be as simple as going on a hike, and allow our local, county, State or National nature parks to do what they do best and heal our weary modern bodies and minds -- Even in the colder months.
Just make sure to wear a jacket and start small. And check out our NEWLY LISTED, "When life gives you Lemons..." T-shirts by clicking the link below!
But it's not all good news. Mortality rates among wild condors remain extremely high for many of the same reasons which led to their near extinction in the 20th century. Loss of habitat, diminished food sources, lead poisoning, trash ingestion and poaching continue to frustrate condor restoration efforts.
They remain one of the rarest animals in the world. So rare, that they are one of relatively few species where each and every individual is numbered, and tagged.
Against the odds condors have come back from the brink of extinction, but they are far from in the clear. Condors are still hugely dependent on captive breeding programs and continuing conservation efforts. But there is hope that with greater awareness and continuing efforts to preserve and restore these birds to what is left of their historic range, that condors may once again soar through our skies on their 10ft wings.
Condors remind us that it is possible to bring a species back from the brink. But it requires continual effort and dedication. We've been fortunate to see four wild condors in our Wild Spaces travels, and each time it has been a huge thrill.
Check out the stunning footage we shot of these massive birds in Zion and Grand Canyon National Parks. And make sure to check out our store for our new Condor T-Shirts!
Today as part two of our on-going scaled comparison series where we highlight two structures; one wonder of nature and one man-made structure. Today, we're highlighting two icons of North America: The Statue of Liberty (305ft tall) in New York harbor and Rainbow Bridge (290ft tall) located in the desert canyon lands of Southern Utah along the shores of modern day Lake Powell.
One serves as an icon of freedom and liberty to a nation comprised mostly of relative new comers, the other an icon of natural beauty, and a sacred site to a people with ancient and deep spiritual ties to the land. Together they represent a diverse set of ideals and history which sometimes clash. We invite you to consider the contrasts and compliments of these two iconic locations and share your thoughts with us in the comments section.
Anyone who says Summer is over, clearly doesn't know what their talking about. Now is one of the best times of the year to get outdoors. Let your inner Wild Child loose this weekend, and show everyone that summer is only over when we say it is over. Help us keep summer alive all year long, by supporting us on Kickstarter. http://kck.st/1UacC65
We just love this video. Just as beautiful as the places which have been preserved, is the idea which ultimately became law.
"In order to ensure that... Expanding Settlement, and Growing Mechanization does not occupy and modify all areas within the United States, for this purpose there is established Wilderness Areas... where man himself is a visitor who does not remain, where the land retains its primeval character and influence."
-Wilderness Act of 1964
What do you think. Is the primeval character of the land worth protecting?
Here's a diagram we created a little while ago which illustrates a perhaps less thought of contrast between our modern world and the Wild Spaces we love so much. Angels Landing is one of our favorite hikes, and not a trail to take for granted, but for those of you who haven't hiked Angels Landing yet, perhaps you've been to the top of one of these other structures.
We've been to the top of three of the four (One World Trade Center the exception), and Angels Landing is our pick for the best. Just a side note. Angels Landing though imposing, is far from the tallest structure in Zion National Park.
On the Wild Side-Travel Blog
Everything from featured destinations and activities, insider info and traveling tips as well as current events.