Chasing the Aurora, Looking to the Skies of Alaska

September 30, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Gods of the Alaskan NightGods of the Alaskan NightChena River State Recreation Area, Alaska Gods of the Alaskan Night, Chena River State Recreation Area, Alaska 

I just returned from an 18 day trip chasing the northern lights across the wild, beautiful, and very BIG state of Alaska. Our first night spent just outside Talkeetna gave us a glimpse of The Mountain. Our last night in a hotel in Anchorage gave us our first shower. In between we camped at Chena River State Recreation Area outside of Fairbanks; Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge about 8 miles from the Canadian border; Moon Lake State Recreation Area near Tok; various sites along the Dalton Highway; and finally Denali National Park. Throughout the entire trip It was a challenge finding clear skies, but we were able to catch the northern lights a few times and we even saw some wildlife during the day (when I wasn’t napping after staying up half the night looking at the Alaskan skies!).

Clouds Can't Hold the Light of the AuroraClouds Can't Hold the Light of the AuroraChena River State Recreation Area, Alaska Clouds Can't Cover the Northern Lights, Chena River State Recreation Area, Alaska

Clouds: We love ‘em at sunset. We love ‘em at sunrise. They hold the light in and, when conditions are right, clouds allow the sky to burn. But for the Northern Lights viewer, clouds are the enemy. You see, the aurora dance high in the sky. The aurora shine behind the clouds. So if there are clouds, it’s likely the cloud cover will block the light. Unless it’s a really strong display, or you get a clearing window, and the lights happen to dance through. On those cloudy nights, you just have to embrace the enemy, hold them with hope, or call it a night and go to sleep…

Aurora NightAurora NightChena River State Recreation Area, Alaska Aurora Night, Chena River State Recreation Area, Alaska

The first three nights were too cloudy to even try. But I tired anyway, and set my alarm for 1:30 AM one night only to be greeted with rain. And on the following night— the night with the strongest KP forecast of the entire trip— I sat with hope in my heart, only to see the clouds swallow the light at 11:30pm. I went to bed, and set my alarm for 3 am. I would try again… 

While I set the alarm for 3 am,  I woke up at 2:28 because of the cold. It was cold that night then, too, I remembered. So cold that I couldn’t sleep on that night I saw the northern lights for the first time. It was so cold that I got out of the tent--  that night back in August 2016 when I saw the northern lights for the first time. Cold. Cold nights mean clear nights. Or at least clearer than it was when I went to bed. This could be good, I thought to myself as I unzipped the window of the roof top tent. I looked outside, towards the sky, and saw a green glow. "This is good", I said to Naomi. "It looks like it’s going off!" I hurriedly put on boots, jacket, puffy, big boy parka, gloves, and grab the camera and tripod. I set up at the waters edge and pointed the camera to the sky. I watched the lights dance in a rhythm akin to the gods. Yes, gods. These displays of light were Gods of the Alaskan Night.

Night PaintingNight PaintingChena River State Recreation Area, Alaska Night Painting, Chena River State Recreation Area, Alaska

Going to bed with wonder in my eyes, I fall asleep not knowing what is a dream and what is real. This is the effect of the aurora. It makes you question what is real. It fills you with wonder. It leaves you wanting to see her dance again and again. I open my eyes the next morning to heavy clouds and a forecast that looks bleak for the Fairbanks area. So we decide to break camp and go into town for lunch and research.

I primarily used the Aurora app, ExploreFairbanks.com, the Aurora forecast from the University of Alaska, and the weather app on my iPone to research KP forecasts, viewing probability, cloud cover and nighttime weather forecasts for a few select locations in interior Alaska. After consulting with these various apps and websites over coffee, we decided to drive towards the Canadian border and the Yukon Territory, hoping that we would find a north facing campsite on a body of water. One of the shots that I envisioned before traveling to Alaska was the aurora and reflection. I felt like I came close the night before, but wanted a more balanced composition, one that evoked a sense of wonder balanced by calm.

Butter Melting in the SkyButter Melting in the SkyMoon Lake State Recreation Area, Alaska Butter Melting in the Sky, Moon Lake State Recreation Area, Alaska

The Space Ship AscendsThe Space Ship AscendsMoon Lake State Recreation Area, Alaska

The Space Ship Ascends, Moon Lake State Recreation Area, Alaska

To view on a full moon or not to view on a full moon. That is the question. There’s different ideas as to whether or not the full moon should be avoided when chasing the northern lights. One side believes that the light of the full moon interferes with one’s ability to see the aurora. Another side believes that while the light of the full moon may inhibit the eye’s ability to pick up the aurora, the camera is unaffected or just slightly affected by the moon’s light. And for pictures, some think that it may be good to have part of the landscape illuminated— especially if there is no snow to brighten the scene with reflected light. I decided to chase the aurora a few nights before the full moon and a few nights after. But I had the added advantage of a few days when the moon was approaching full phase but would remain below the horizon because of the extreme northern latitude of our location. So this would give me a few dark nights and a few bright ones. Here are a few photos from when the moon was out, but remained low along the horizon nearly all night long.


Staying Up Late on a Near Full MoonStaying Up Late on a Near Full MoonTetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska Staying Up Late on a Near Full Moon, Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Fall Colors of Tetlin National Wildlife RefugeFall Colors of Tetlin National Wildlife RefugeTetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Fall Colors of Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Did I Dream This?Did I Dream This?Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska Did I Dream This?, Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

We retraced our steps and camped at a familiar spot on our way back to Fairbanks. Stayed up with the flames of our campfire and enjoyed hot chocolate and snacks while we waited for the light show to begin. And when it did it was all business. It was Just click, click, clicking away. Nature is awesome.

Red Squirrel Aurora, Chena River State Recreation Area, Alaska

The Arctic Circle. An imaginary line on the top of the world. 66 33. Maps mark it. A sign says you are there. But other than that it looks pretty much the same as anywhere else. Except it’s at this imaginary line where magic happens. Or at least it happened for us. Around 2 am a line of vertical light appeared in the middle of the sky. It was like a knife edge cutting into the darkness of night. And from the slit, from that thin hole in the sky, the aurora entered the Arctic Circle, that imaginary line where we stood. For 27 minutes— from 2:02 to 2:29 she danced. And JOY is the only word that I have to describe it. Her performance was joyful. The sky was full of joy. I danced with her. Joyful. Smiling. Dancing. Jumping. Just pure, ecstatic joy that night at The Arctic Circle, that imaginary place of unimaginable, yet somehow very very real, joy.

Magic Tree 1Magic Tree 1The Arctic Circle, Alaska

The Magic Tree 1, The Arctic Circle, Alaska

Spools of Joyous LightSpools of Joyous LightThe Arctic Circle, Alaska

Spools of Joyous Light, The Arctic Circle, Alaska

And She Danced. That Night, She DancedAnd She Danced. That Night, She DancedThe Arctic Circle, Alaska And She Danced. That Night, She Danced, The Arctic Circle, Alaska

It was as if we were in a great amphitheater and the lights danced all around us. Like keys being hit on a xylophone the colors jumped green, white, purple, green all up and down the night scale. We looked on in wonder. Mouths agape and smiling. We looked at one another with joyful eyes, as if to say, “Can you believe this!???”

XylephoneXylephoneThe Arctic Circle, Alaska Xylophone, The Arctic Circle, Alaska

The road continues north and north we go, leaving this crazy night behind we drive on wondering if it was all a dream. The drive takes us over mountains of the Brooks Range and ends at a river bed in Happy Valley where we watched a momma grizzly bear and cub cross down river about a 100 yards away from our camp. Before bed we thanked the animals we saw that day: thank you red fox; thank you moose; thank you golden eagle; thank you musk ox; thank you grizzly bear; thank you little cub. And we thanked all the animals that saw us only we just didn’t see them: thank you to all of the unknowns and unseens


The Road NorthThe Road NorthThe Arctic Circle, Alaska The Road North, The Arctic Circle, Alaska

Chasing the AuroraChasing the AuroraTetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Chasing the Aurora, Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

 

Campgrounds of the Trip

Denali South Viewpoint

Rosehip, Chena River State Recreation Area

Red Squirrel, Chena River State Recreation Area

Moon Lake, State Recreation Area

Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge

Whitefish State Recreation Area

The Arctic Circle, The Dalton Highway

Happy Valley, dispersed camping, The Dalton Highway

Mike and John's hunting site, dispersed camping, The Dalton Highway

Denali National Park

 

Aloha, 

Lee

 

To view more images of the Aurora dancing in the Alaskan skies please click here, Aurora Chasing.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Spring Snow in a Wild Land-- Yellowstone National Park April 2022

May 01, 2022  •  1 Comment

Rising SunRising SunYellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
Sunrise in a Wild Land of Wild Life, YNP, Wyoming

I just returned from an amazing trip to Yellowstone National Park. I've been 7 times now-- in the heat and smoke of summer; in the crisp cool air of the fall rut; in the brutal cold of deep winter; and now, in the springtime of change. Of all the trips that I have made to this wild land of wild life, spring has been my favorite. More roads are open, giving more opportunity to explore and spot wildlife; bears are out of their dens and hungry; temperatures are still cool to cold, allowing the wildlife to active for longer periods of the day; birds return to the park and fill the morning and evening air with their soaring song. Here are a few images from Yellowstone in Spring.

Brindle Wolf StareBrindle Wolf StareOne of my top 3 all time wildlife encounters. Two wolves just crossed the road. This one trailed behind and stopped in the meadow to look and howl. Soon, there was a wolf call and response sing-a-long as the white wolf that had crossed earlier stopped to howl, along with wolves in the hills on each side of the road. The entire encounter lasted little more than 5 minutes, but it will provide me with a lifetime of memories.
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
Brindle Wolf Stare, YNP, Wyoming

We were surrounded by wolves. Two had just crossed the road into an open meadow filled with snow and I thought the encounter was over. But the brindle wolf stopped and howled and soon other wolves appeared. One on the hillside across from us; one in front; one white one walked behind us 10 feet from our disbelieving eyes. 7 wolves in total, and while the encounter lasted only five minutes or less, they gave me a lifetime of memories in just a moment.

The Other SideThe Other SideThis brindle wolf stayed came out of the snowy woods and watched us with the intensity of the wild. He howled a few notes and then leisurely walked up and over the other side. I never saw him again. Till next time my wild friend.
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
The Other Side, YNP, Wyoming

Big Bad Wolf Stepping OutBig Bad Wolf Stepping OutYellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022

Stepping Out, YNP, Wyoming

A Beautiful Grey WolfA Beautiful Grey WolfA big, beautiful grey wolf stands over a bag of bison bones and looks at me with wild eyes in the early morning light.
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
A Beautiful Grey Wolf, YNP, Wyoming

You never know when or where the next wildlife encounter will occur. In this wild land the only thing you control is your attitude and effort. The day you give up, is the day you will not see anything. The days you persevere are the days you are blessed. 

Big BearBig BearWe saw a long silhouette strolling through the white meadow. It's long strides were covering the distance with ease. This bear was huge! I drove further down to clearing in the same direction the bear was walking. I waited. And waited until I could see the bear foraging in the woods. After about an hour of waiting he came out, long confident strides plowing through the snow. He was a big bear.
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
Big Bear, YNP, Wyoming

ScoopScoopA giant grizzly bear stops in the snow and takes in the scene. Notice that this grizzly has only one ear. The right being tossed in a fight some years ago.
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
Scoop, YNP, Wyoming

What Goes Up Must Come DownWhat Goes Up Must Come DownSub-adult grizzly in Yellowstone descends a tree after not catching any ravens at all.
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022

What Goes Up Must Come Down, YNP, Wyoming

Stare Down, YNP, Wyoming

Bears! Bears! Bears! Yellowstone in the spring gave great opportunities for bear viewing. While I didn't see any COY (Cubs of the Year or Spring Cubs) I did see 5 grizzly in 2 weeks. Four grizzly were seen on the newly opened roads of the park, roads that are inaccessible in the winter. Incidentally, this road was also where the amazing wolf encounter happened as well. Yellowstone in spring? You can count me in. ;-)

American BadgerAmerican BadgerYellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
American Badger, YNP, Wyoming

Red Fox HuntRed Fox HuntI have come to really like red foxes! They are so cute and their coat so colorful. One day I'll get a good pounce! (Add it to the wishlist!)
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 2022
Red Fox on the Hunt, YNP, Wyoming

Mountain Bluebird On the Wing, YNP, Wyoming

***

All photos were taken in a safe location and with a 600mm lens or with a 600mm lens + 1.4 ext (840mm).

To see more of this wild land of wild life, or to order prints of Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park, please visit the online collection  Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

Aloha, 

Lee

 




 


Winter Views-- The Cosmic Dunes and the Bad, Bad Basin-- DVNP

August 25, 2021  •  Leave a Comment

Joshua Tree and High Desert Snow, Death Valley National Park, California

Descending Death Valley Road I am soon surrounded by Joshua Trees and snow in this is high desert. After an hour of winding roads I turn right onto a bumpy, gravel road and drive straight until I see the Eureka Dunes. I arrive late in the afternoon and pop the roof top tent. I'm not going anywhere tonight. Sunset session will be right here. I grab a beer and set up the tripod and chair. Now I just have to wait for the show.

Mocha Mountain, Death Valley National Park, California

High Desert Sky, Death Valley National Park, California

Pyramids beneath a Pink SkyPyramids beneath a Pink SkyDeath Valley National Park, California

Pink Sky Above, Death Valley National Park, California
 

***

The Eureka Dunes are the highest sand dunes in California and the second highest in the US. They lie in a seldom visited corner of Death Valley National Park. I dry camped here for a couple of nights and photographed these majestic dunes in fierce wind and calm dawns.

Windblown, DVNP, California

Windblown (black and white), DVNP, California

A Fierce Wind Blows, DVNP, California

***

The windblown sand stings, but it covers up foot prints and leaves perfect curves in the dunes. A day following a wind storm is perfect conditions for photography as the landscape appears untouched and new. In this state I can see the Light and the Dark. The Known and the Unknown. And it is likely that neither are what we think them to be.

S Curves of the Summit, DVNP, California
 

Brainwaves of the Cosmic Dune, DVNP, California

Eureka Dunes, DVNP, California

***

Dawn in the desert is cold, especially in January. The mountains that surround me offer no warmth as they block the sun deep into the morning. The sand is cool to the touch. 

Calm Dawn, DVNP, California

The sky alights pink and then a kind of winter grey settles in. I hike the 45 minutes back to my truck, make coffee, and sip it as I pour over a map of Death Valley National Park. I decide to go to Badwater Basin next and I'm soon back on the bumpy "road".

***

Sunset at Badwater, DVNP, California 

Badwater Basin is a salt flat in Death Valley. It lies 282 feet below sea level. It is one of the earth's lowest points and harshest environments. Perhaps it is in these extremes that one can find clarity...

Salty Shards, DVNP, California

Clarity in the Chaos, DVNP, California

The Convergence, DVNP, California

 

Aloha, 

Lee


 


Winter Views-- Lassen NF, Alabama Hills, and Ancient Bristlecones: Back to Cali

July 31, 2021  •  Leave a Comment

Winter Morning (Dawn and Cold Stone), Alabama Hills, Alabama Hills National Recreation Area, California

From Oregon I return to California, where (eventually) I'll make it to the desert sand dunes of Death Valley National Park. But for now I'm full moon chasing across the cold country. I was supposed to be in Yosemite on my birthday, but my camp reservations were cancelled due to COVID protocols by the park service/state of California. So instead of Yosemite I went up to Crater Lake and Painted Hills. I camp in the Lassen National Forest under this full moon.

Full Moon Nears, Lassen National Forest, California

A Full Moon Sets above Eagle Lake, California

From the Lassen National Forest I'm making my way to the Alabama Hills. I knew before setting out on this photography trip I would need to be flexible. I often thought about what I heard in the Marine Corps— Semper Gumbi. It's a take on the Marine Corps motto-- Semper Fidelis or Always Faithful. Semper Gumbi means Always FlexibleIt still makes me laugh... Anyway, I stopped alongside this frozen lake and photographed the moon as it was falling behind the hill where I camped on the crisp, dry snow the night before.

Frozen, California

Mono Lake and 395, California

US Route 395 is one of the most scenic roads in America. The eastern Sierra Nevada and the adventure towns on the flats and foothills are truly spectacular. A photographer, hiker, climber, skier, nature lover of all kinds could spend a lifetime here, happily exploring. Some of my favorite places are Bishop, Lone Pine, the Alabama Hills, and the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest. 

When traveling for a couple of months at a time the days and places run together. When I review the trip in my mind I tend to remember where I was with memories of the full and new moon. Full moon photographs with a new landscape, and stars on the new. On this trip I chased the full moon in Lone Pine, Grand Canyon, Nashville, and White Sands National Park. 

Bowling Ball (A Full Moon Falls Off the Sierras), Alabama Hills National Recreation Area, California

Walking through the frozen snow. Crunch, crunch, crunch..., Alabama Hills, California

First Light Spreads over the Alabama Hills in Lone Pine, California

***

It's the first week in January and I heard that the road up the mountain to the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest was still open. This was surprising to me as I expected the road into the White Mountains to be completely impassable at this time of year. I had no idea how bad the road would be, but I decided to give it a try. I only encountered a few pockets of frozen snow on the shaded turns along the lower section of the pass. The upper portion was completely snow covered, but the gate wasn’t locked. In May 2016 or 17 I made it to this point, but was forced to turn back by a locked gate and a mountain of snow. This time I had better luck and was hesitant, but happy because I wanted to see the old trees that live up there.

I Love these Old and Gnarled Trees, Ancient Bristlecone Pine National Forest, California

As I climbed the mountain the snow became deeper and the corners became more than a little sketchy. I even rescued a Prius that had slid off the road on an icy curve. I would continue onto the Schulman Grove, but I decided that I wouldn’t stay long. Something about a road that climbs 9,000 feet without guardrails makes me more than a little cautious.

Sky of Light, Mountains of SnowSky of Light, Mountains of SnowInyo National Forest, California

Red Sky at Night, A Photographer’s Delight, Sierra Nevada Range, California 

I am standing near the summit of a mountain pass and a song by Incubus plays in my mind. The refrain sings “...and I am happy...” Watching the light blaze through the winter sky I take in the warmth of the moment. I am full of happiness and gratitude. I am reminded— amidst this mountain scene—nay, by this mountain scene-- of my incredible smallness. Awesome is the power outside of me. Outside is a good place to be.

Some Sunsets are Hard to Walk Away From (Last Look for the Night), the Sierra Nevada Range, California

The light show continued the following morning as I descended the mountain and continued onto Death Valley Road. Leaving the Mountains of Light behind I felt a tinge of sorrow. It was such a beautiful place and one that I know so little about. New scenes and locations— especially ones as gigantic as the Sierra Nevada— are intimidating. Where to begin? What can I expect? How will it go? What lies hidden in the mountain and the valleys below? Daydreaming of explorations to come, I wind my way down one road and up another.

Soon Joshua Trees will be all around me and it will be clear that I have indeed left one place and have entered into another.

And in Death Valley I might as well be entering into another dimension.

From the Mountains of Light to the Valley of Death (A Good Morning Drive), California

Aloha, 

Lee
 


Winter Views-- The Painted Hills, Oregon

July 26, 2021  •  Leave a Comment

The Painted Hills, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon

The forecast called for a snowstorm to hit the entire Cascade range around Christmas day so I escaped to the Painted Hills on Christmas Evee.

Here’s the sky that welcomed me to this magical landscape of colored stripes and gentle hills.

Christmas Eve at the Painted Hills, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon 

After the light show I searched for a campsite and found one off a dirt road at Priest Hole. It was right along a river and would make a peaceful place to welcome Saint Nic. I celebrate the season with a delicious dinner of Beyond Meat Italian sausage, spinach, tomato sauce, pasta, and one of the best beers of the trip-- Dark Reckoning Imperial Porter from Morgan Territory Brewing.

Clouds above the Painted Hills, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon

Christmas morning 2020. I’m standing on a hill in the dark, waiting for a sun that will not appear until the late afternoon. Clouds fill the sky above, and the gently rolling landscape slowly comes into view. The land awakes, and in the muted light of an overcast morning the badlands that surround me become filled in with color. Burgundy and beige. Soft browns and golden yellows. Hues that seem rich and sophisticated.

The Landscape is Patient and Calm, Holding Time and Mysteries in these Little Valleys of Painted Hills, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon

The Land is Wise and I Wish to Know Her, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon

***
From where I am standing I can easily see a girl with a dog a little further up the hill. She has been sitting on the hillside since before I arrived, well before dawn. Who travels alone into nature on Christmas morning? We talk. She’s from the east coast and couldn’t travel home for the holidays so she decided to find solace. Out here. I hope she finds it. I hope, too, that the pandemic will end and all will feel safe to travel home. And all will feel safe to travel away. To places both far and near. May all beings be happy and free.

There was still quite a bit of snow on the mountain pass leading from the Painted Hills to Bend so I decided to hang around the John Day Fossil Bends National Monument a little while longer. I drove to the Sheep Rock District and hiked the Blue Basin Trail in the morning, returning to the Painted Hills late in the afternoon.

The Painted HillsThe Painted HillsI heard that there was still quite a bit of snow on the mountain pass so I decided to stay in the Painted Hills a little longer. I spent Christmas in this landscape, and later on Christmas Day I was presented with a gift of light as the clouds broke and the stripes in the hills shined.
John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon
Later Christmas Day the Sun Came out and Presented M a Gift of Light, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon

Sea Change in the Oregon Hills, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon

Moon Over the Oregon Landscape, Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon
 

***

On my last day in the Painted Hills, the morning was one to remember. The heavens filled with pastels, delicate hues of pinks and blues spread across the sky. I watched in wonder, happy to be here. Happy to be in nature. Happy to see the sky change and the landscape come to life. The Painted DreamThe Painted DreamJohn Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon

To Talk with Mother Earth and Father Sky (Wisdom for the Ages), Painted Hills National Monument, Oregon

The picture above, To Talk with Mother Earth and Father Sky, is my favorite photograph from Oregon and one of my favorites from the entire 4 month trip. it is definitely top 5. For sure. I think it it 8 vertical photographs stitched together. I used a nodal slide to help keep the horizon line straight for maximum balance and resolution. There's so much that I like about this landscape: it's gentleness and flow, the many curves and elevations, the light and dark colors and the lines imbedded in the hills. The pastel sky of first light, too, helps to tie it all together. Yes, one of my favorites. 

Painted Hill and Morning Sky, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon

Snow on Distant Mountains, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon

Sky, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon

***

I left the Painted Hills and that amazing last sky and make my way south. While driving through Oregon down into northern eastern California I saw almost as many MAGA and Trump signs as I did Red Tailed Hawks. Needless to say, I stopped for the Hawks and not the signs.

Red Tailed Hawk, Oregon

This was back in late December so the November elections— and electoral qualms— were still fresh in everyone’s mind. Voter issues--ranging from fraud to count-- were in the public dialogue daily so at the time I could understand the prolonged support for the outgoing President. Fast forward to March and April and I’m driving through Florida, Tennessee, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, and Arkansas and I am still seeing Trump signs and flags. Some of the flags even had Trump’s face on Johnny Rambo! Those always made me take a second look just to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating. Keep in mind this was five months after the election, and three months since the current administration took office.

Take Off, Oregon

In my lifetime I have never seen a four year President retain such popular support. And after speaking with several people during the trip who believe that President Trump is the greatest President of their lifetimes, I am convinced that the 2024 elections will be just as interesting and important as the 2020 and 2016 elections were.

Sometimes I feel that living on Kauai I’m in a little bubble. But this road trip across the US— 18,000 miles and 23 states— showed me a lot. Or I guess I saw a lot and had a lot of time to think. About the land, the environment, the people, the politics, the news, the conversations I shared at cafes and campfires. America is a beautiful place. I just hope she’s not broken, but I think she may be. If she is indeed broken, as I suspect, I hope we can fix her. Together. Yes, I hope we can.

Fly Away with Wings Flapping, Oregon

 
Feel free to comment on any of these topics if you like. I will read each comment with the same respect in which it is written. We can agree and we can disagree. And both are OK because that's one way we can learn about each other.

Aloha, 

Lee

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