The Art of Exploration · a diary of day trips, natural places, and miscellaneous adventures

Archive for 2015

The Art of Exploration archive is where you'll find my past writings and thoughts. You are currently viewing a list of articles that were published in 2015.


Warning: Use of undefined constant desc - assumed 'desc' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/customer/www/artofexploration.com/public_html/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/sort-query-posts/sort-query-posts.php(57) : runtime-created function on line 1
The Lizard
The Lizard
Today, we visited The Lizard, the most southerly point of the British mainland. The weather continued to be unpredictable but for several hours the cloud cover broke and we enjoyed stunning blue skies.
New Year in Cornwall
New Year in Cornwall
In an effort to avoid losing our hard-won vacation time, we booked a year-end holiday in Cornwall to celebrate the New Year, relax at a cozy cottage on the coast, and to recover from a very busy year.
South Bank London
South Bank London
Today, for the first time since I arrived in the UK a dozen days ago, the clouds parted and slivers of blue sky peaked through. It was a welcome change from the endless layer of thick grey clouds that have otherwise prevailed. Then it went dark.
Autumn Hues
Autumn Hues
As the seasons change, the landscape is redrawn in a whole new palette of colors. In recent years, I have been too busy to enjoy this beautiful transition, but that’s about to change.
Snow At Elevation
Snow At Elevation
It snowed in the high country last night so today I cleared my schedule and drove up into the mountains to get a closer look at this season’s first snow.
Roadtrip Santa Fe
Roadtrip Santa Fe
This past weekend, I took a roadtrip to Santa Fe to visit a former high school classmate of mine who moved there several years ago. On my journey southward, I followed US 285 instead of I-25, the more traditional route from Denver to Santa Fe.
Altitudinal Attitude Adjustment
Altitudinal Attitude Adjustment
On a hike from Bear Lake to Emerald Lake, I discover that adjusting my attitude is the best way to deal with high altitudes. Because if you mope about being a bit breathless in thin air, you’re probably overlooking the spectacular views.
Boulder Fall Fest
Boulder Fall Fest
Today I went to the Boulder Fall Fest, an annual street festival that features a mix of local foods, microbrews, music, and art. The was an assortment of sculptors, jewelry makers, fiber artists, photographers, and painters.
Summer Winding Down
Summer Winding Down
The beginning of autumn is just a few days away and there are signs of the new season everywhere. Rocky Mountain Pumpkin Ranch is already gearing-up for Halloween and it’s barely the Ides of September.
Smoke Season
Smoke Season
About ten days ago, a shift in the jet stream delivered a thick layer of smoke to the Front Range, cutting the visibility (which normally exceeds 35 miles) to less than 10 miles at times.
Horseshoe Park Overlook
Horseshoe Park Overlook
Today I made a quick trip up to Rocky Mountain National Park to renew my annual pass and to drive around the park for an hour before heading back home to catch up on laundry and cleaning.
Remembering Rethymno
Remembering Rethymno
Recently, a coworker of mine returned from a trip to Greece and shared some of his many wonderful photos with me. There were images of breathtaking Aegean coastlines, scenic gorges, the Acropolis, the Parthenon, the Temple of Zeus.
Balanced Rock, Lumpy Ridge
Balanced Rock, Lumpy Ridge
First, a bit of local wildlife news. One night last week, a bear broke into the Colorado Cherry Company pie shop — a popular eatery in the quiet mountain community of Pinewood Springs.
An Explosion of Wildflowers
An Explosion of Wildflowers
The 4th of July weekend caught me by surprise. Where the hell did June go? A whole month—gone in the blink of an eye. And one of my favorite months of the year, no less! This is not excellent.
A New Pixel Catcher
A New Pixel Catcher
Over the past several months, I’ve been struggling with the little Canon Powershot S100 compact camera that I take on my hikes, as there are repeated signs that its sensor is failing.
The Gathering Storm
The Gathering Storm
Today I went for a quick lap around the Eagle Wind Trail at Rabbit Mountain. At the beginning of my hike, I noticed the storm clouds building over Boulder but thought little of it.
Roxborough State Park
Roxborough State Park
For some time now, I’ve been wanting to explore some of Colorado’s state parks. Finally, today, we visited our first: Roxborough State Park, a 4,000 acre park that lies just southwest of Denver.
Gem Lake
Gem Lake
This past weekend Phil and I went up to Estes Park to hike the Gem Lake Trail. For most of the hike, it was sunny and mild but as we approached Gem Lake the clouds took over and the temperature dropped.
Finding Winter
Finding Winter
This past week, a large, slow-moving storm system passed through the Front Range. At lower elevations it started out as snow, but the temperatures warmed and the snow gave way to copious amounts of rain.
Nighthawk Trail
Nighthawk Trail
Near the Hall Ranch trailhead, you have the choice of either following the Bitterbrush Trail or the Nighthawk Trail. In the past, I’ve hiked the Bitterbrush Trail many times but I’ve only followed the Nighthawk Trail once, for a short distance.
Lichen Loop
Lichen Loop
Today I made a quick exploratory visit to Heil Valley Ranch. This was my first visit to this park and I was pleased to find that it is yet another nearby area that offers plenty of beautiful landscape, interesting geology, and many miles of trails.
Better Pictures
Better Pictures
I’ve been trying to get in shape in prepartion for some higher-elevation hikes that I’m hoping to tackle this summer. I feel like I have a lot of work to do just to restore my fitness to what it was last fall. My legs are stiff and weak after a long winter.
The High Sixties
The High Sixties
It certainly hasn’t felt like February lately. We’ve had a generous stretch of mild weather and it feels more like spring than … what’s the word I’m looking for? Winter! Yes, that’s it.
Sunshine and Snow
Sunshine and Snow
Last week, Phil and I went for a hike in the Lumpy Ridge area. This was our first hike of the New Year and the first time this winter that we ventured out onto proper trails that were covered in snow, even if it was just an inch or two.
A New Year
A New Year
2014 was a busy year. In fact, it was more than just busy—it was at times surprisingly productive. The first part of the year was filled with big decisions and, as a result, was riddled with stress.