View from my beachside cabana this week at Magnificent Rock, Nicaragua. Sun, surf, yoga, salsa, repeat. It’s been a week to challenge myself in new adventures – learning to surf over a reef has been one of the most challenging sports I’ve experienced. Successfully pushing past the fear to the exhilaration of riding my first wave to the shore, the magic of watching the sunset over the sea as the full moon rose, & the adrenalin of successfully catching a larger wave were rewards well worth the effort.
My kind of travel: perfect mix of adventure sports, spa bliss, and farm to table delicious and healthy meals – all shared in an intimate setting of this magical 24 room boutique property. Wish all my photoshoot assignments were this much fun!
I don’t know why it’s so difficult for Americans to enjoy time off work to relax and rejuvenate without feeling guilty, but for the last 15 years I’ve found it necessary to escape the USA to a 3rd world country for this ‘indulgence’. When a last minute opportunity arose for a trip to Molokai and Maui, I decided to return to the islands I’d enjoyed with my family and rediscover the islands Aloha spirit.
Dewitt Jones, a National Geographic photojournalist, inspirational speaker, filmmaker, creator of “Celebrate What’s Right with the World (http://www.celebratewhatsright.com), and long time friend of colleague Robert Holmes offered us his guest house and the right frame of mind to recharge our creative batteries. Evenings were spent on his porch watching sunset over the island, and at dawn we explored the extensive natural wilderness of the Molokai land trust conservation.
As a self proclaimed adrenalin junkie, I’m constantly seeking out new adventures in far-flung places. I’ve recently helicopter – snowboarded in Canada and lept off a 440 foot bungee jump in New Zealand. I’ve also been a frequent skydiver, scuba diver, mountain biker, and rock climber, and avid trekker – for 18 months, I traveled vagabond style through the South Pacific and S.E. Asia hiking up Mt. Kinabalu in Borneo and to the base camp of Mt. Everest.
However I don’t consider myself an extreme athlete or adventurer. It’s all relative – especially compared to all the characters I’ve encountered on my journeys. For the ten years I worked at various sports companies I was continually amazed at the boundaries athletes could push and the obstacles those with limitations could overcome. As a photojournalist I’ve had the good fortune to illustrate stories by pioneers of the adventure travel industry such as Tim Cahill, founder of Outside Magazine, who has spent a lifetime forging his own path.
So how would my experiences in Puerto Rico compare? I found an ideal balance between easily accessible adventures and authentic culture. It was an easy way to dip my toes into both worlds during my whirlwind week visit.
Here’s the photo and video highlights:
18 months ago Fred Noble was diagnosed with ALS. Though he’s lost the ability to move his legs, he was determined to celebrate his 75th birthday much as he has for the past 38 years – heli-skiing with Canadian Mountain Holidays. Last week he made the first ever descent on a sit-ski at the Bugaboos. Stay posted for his story about this sit-ski adventure soon, here’s a teaser from the documentary film we’re helping him create.
So, here’s how the first descent on a sit ski heliskiing at CMH unfolded . . .