Experience Insignificance

Seems I only write after an extreme experience like hiking to the Maroon Bells alone in the winter, or jumping off cliffs into an ice cold mountain lake. Why don’t I write about the rest of my adventures like downhill mountain biking in Telluride, or surfing in California? They are pretty awesome stories too, but it’s weird writing about my life all the time, like I’m bragging or showing off or something. Maybe it’s because I’m picky, with unreasonably high expectations of myself. Or maybe it’s because I’m simply too lazy to sit down and do it. I think it’s a combination of all three, but I realized that each and every adventure is epic in it’s own way. The short bike rides in the woods, the intense sprint sessions by the river, even the quiet moments on top of a mountain I just climbed – every adventure has a story. That being said, not every story needs to be shared. Some I keep only for myself.

Too often I’m reminded of how short life is, and that it is meant to be lived with passion, not to be predetermined by guidelines or rules, and definitely not to be lived in fear. While maybe I’m never meant to fully understand why, I believe I seek adventure to feel like part of something bigger than myself. And maybe that’s what people seek in God… I’m not sure. Moments like being alone with the bears in the Aspen Wilderness in 4 feet of snow, exhausted, sunburned, sore and hungry give me a sense of insignificance. Feeling small and unimportant allows me to see my life from a greater perspective. This also explains my fascination with astronomy and the universe.

Ok, yes, hiking alone in those conditions was reckless, but I was pushed past every limit I thought I had, and it changed me, just like CrossFit did when I was training. Powerful experiences like these remind me that there are bigger and more important things than the petty situations I call “problems.” The most important thing I can do is live my life my way, not waste time on things that don’t matter, or people who don’t care, and to make my mark on the world. In other words, I don’t just want to play the game, I want to change the game. 

So even though I am going to keep most of my stories for myself, here are some pictures of what I’ve been up to.

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My Life Lately

The past year has been a series of epic adventures and life changing decisions. Though I’m always striving for the next level, I created this video to remind myself of how far I’ve come already. If I die tomorrow, this is my story, my art, my message to the world. This is My Life Lately. 

“Each one of us only gets to experience a small piece of forever. What will you do with yours?” 

I have some incredible people by my side and I could not have done this without all of you. You know who you are…  Thank you for helping me find my way to the amazing place I am today. 


Initiate Authenticity

“Experiencing the world through endless second hand information isn’t enough. If we want authenticity we have to initiate it.” – Travis Rice

I have been working too much lately. While usually this is a good thing because I am trying to stay busy and save up some cash, working 6 days a week for 12 weeks straight was starting to burn me out. I needed a day to ground myself.

With off-days being so rare for me, I couldn’t decide how I wanted to spend my time. I could go to Breckenridge and see some friends, go to Boulder to see my family, be lazy at home for once, or I could find a random adventure and just go with it. Well, if you know me at all then you already know what I did. I drove up to the mountains in pursuit of a fun, random, wilderness adventure.

After an hour of driving through aspen-filled canyons and up steep, windy roads I got to Brainard Lake Park, about 30 minutes Northwest of Boulder. On a recommendation from my mom, I tried to follow her vague directions to a place she loves called Blue Lake, but it was a long shot. There were so many trails and lakes in the area I figured I would never find Blue Lake and I should just check out another place; so I kept driving.


See the face in the rock? It’s Chief Niwot/Lefthand.

Up and up I drove as each parking lot I passed was full. Finally I reached the top and was pleased to find that there were only a few other cars there. “Now this is more like it,” I though to myself. I drove an hour and a half from Denver to get away and spend some time alone in the mountains.

I grabbed my GoPro, water, a sandwich, a poncho, a hoodie, and some pants, then began my journey up the mountain.

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I had given up on Blue Lake and figured I would just find a new cool spot.


Besides, I was having fun river hopping and looking for wildlife along the way to wherever it was I was going.


If I would have read the sign at the bottom of the trail head I would have known that I was on a direct path to Blue Lake and didn’t even realize it.


An hour and a half or so later I reached the top of the trail.  After passing several small ponds, admiring grassy green meadows filled with butterflies and wildflowers, and climbing piles of rockslide debris, I came to a majestic blue lake backed by Colorado’s Indian Peaks.


I was in the most beautiful place, and I was all alone. Exactly where I wanted to be.

I stayed at the lake for at least an hour wandering around and taking random GoPro pictures of myself doing handstands. I was having a blast and for a brief moment in time, I was not just in a place I could go; I was in a place I could just be.

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Four hours after leaving my car, I was back. Within 10 seconds of starting my engine, it began to down-pour! It had been threatening to rain all day, and I got sprinkled on a few times, but all I could do was laugh at my perfect timing. Today was my day.

Next, I went to Blue Sky, my family’s cabin a few miles down the road. I ate lunch on Diane Mountain, a nearby cliff named after my Aunt Diane who was killed by a drunk driver. I stayed until I was scared off by the nearing lightning storm.


By the time I got back home to Denver I was exhausted, happy, relaxed, and inspired. I need to take days off more often. 🙂