Sunday, March 29, 2009

Need Money for Exploring? Try Selling Thongs

In 15 years of covering expeditions, well, this is a first. The 50 Years - 50 States - 50 Speeches Expedition is raising money through sales of a wide variety of imprinted wearables, including this thong for $9.99. It gives new meaning to the term: expedition support.

Thong sales are the brainchild of Dr. David E. Guggenheim, the self-professed "Ocean Doctor." He launched a one-year journey of outreach, education, and discovery on his 50th birthday last October. The project aims to bring free programs about the oceans to schools in all 50 U.S. states. In April alone, Guggenheim has scheduled talks at five schools, from Washington to Texas to Florida and Maine. By its culmination at the end of 2009, the expedition will reach tens of thousands of students, sharing firsthand accounts of ocean exploration and important lessons about the oceans and their conservation.

The expedition is a joint project of The Ocean Foundation, the fiscal sponsor, along with 1planet1ocean, and is supported by tax-deductible donations to the Ocean Doctor’s 50 Years - 50 States - 50 Speeches Expedition Fund. An online store also supports the efforts, with imprinted products that include this thong. You just have to be brave enough to wear one. (For more information:

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Where Barbara Met Harry and Sally

Explorers and adventurers have been honored for years for their achievements. The Explorers Club has its Explorers Club Medal and Lowell Thomas Awards. But we daresay few have been honored with a photo on the wall of New York’s famed Katz’s Delicatessen, scene of the fake orgasm scene in the hit movie "When Harry Met Sally" (1989). There’s even a sign overhead to commemorate the table. New Yorker Barbara Hillary, 77, an adventurer who is reportedly the first African-American woman to ski any distance to the North Pole (see EN, March 2009), commands some choice real estate near the corned beef and rye. That's Barbara on the wall at 2 o'clock. The other image shows her when she reached the North Pole in April 2007. Learn more about her at

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Field Research

In order to research news about mountain exploration, from time to time it's necessary to unchain oneself from the laptop and actually get outdoors. While admittedly this recent visit to The Canyons in Park City was short on scientific exploration, it did provide an excellent opportunity to study snowflake propagation ... and the science of gravity. Photo above: The author engages in some powder therapy on Mar. 9, 2009. Photo credit: Michael Halstead,

Monday, March 2, 2009

The Monkey is Finally Off My Back

They say many of us have at least one book inside screaming to get out. Well, I finally got the monkey off my back. The manuscript for "You Want to Go Where?" has been completed, handed into my editor at Skyhorse Publishing. After numerous weekends chained to the laptop, banging out an account of past adventures and expeditions – and how explorers somehow found the necessary funding to achieve their dream trips - I'm finally done. It has been tough writing about the outdoors while sitting inside for hours upon hours. So hold my calls. I'm going skiing to celebrate.