NEW BLOG POST: Castelló D'empuries Costa Brava Photo Walk. Just like with people, there are places in the world with natural beauty, and some that have to work at being beautiful, or finding the beauty. As a photographer who is always photographing places, I’ll admit it – some are easier than others. But it’s the places that make you work and really put your skills and creativity to use that are the most rewarding.
Mammoth Lakes in the High Sierras was a breath of fresh air for us in the trip so far. A place to unpack our suitcases and breath for a while at 8,000 feet! Yesterday we focused on the extreme adventures they have around here, and today we put on the gear and did the beginner versions of adventure ourself! We biked paved trails around the lakes region with stunning views, then we even tried our hand at beginning climbing at Horseshoe Slabs; a bit nerve-wracking - but I survived! I'm terrified of heights - but I refuse to let my fears stop me so I put on the 'magic shoes', and climbed the slabs...slowly! It was a great reminder that adventure is accessible to all in #CaliforniaWild ! Visit Mammoth
Our #CaliforniaWild team on the American River with O.A.R.S. - Whitewater Rafting! It always amazes me that even though the water is cold...you have so much fun rafting that I don't even really think about it! A great, and refreshing morning!
Ski towns like Mammoth in the #HighSierras are not simply about winter! They have breathed new life into summer by running their gondolas and lifts up the mountain for mountain biking, hiking, and sightseeing. We got dirty today watching the incredible Kamikaze Bike Games. We perched ourselves all over the course to get a glimpse of these incredible bikers in action. Such a fun way to experience the slopes in the summer! We also went to the top of Mammoth on the gondola to do a little hiking and enjoy the incredible views of this surprising region! #CaliforniaWild
Jumping for joy in Yosemite National Park! #CaliforniaWild Photo taken by Stuffed Suitcase Family Travel
Our National Parks can be crowded, but if you simply go a little off the beaten track, you can find yourself all alone enjoying the solitude. Today we entered the High Sierra region and stopped at Yosemite's Olmsted Point. There were many other visitors milling around and we simply hiked up away from the parking area a little ways and found ourselves alone enjoying the views of Tenaya Lake! We also did a little frolicking around Tuolumne Meadows. A beautiful day in the #HighSierras ! #CaliforniaWild
When in Gold Country, you have to try gold panning! This was my chance to strike it rich...
#CaliforniaWild Visit Gold Country
Only 2 days left to enter to WN A TRIP FOR LIFE! And enter to win my Globetrotter Prize pack with a $500 gift certificate to Exodus Travels! Follow all sign up instructions here -> https://www.facebook.com/OttsworldTravel/photos/a.276459355778309.63911.265761520181426/1491406047616961/?type=3&theater
It's nearly harvest time in #GoldCountry ! California's history started here hand-in-hand with California agriculture. There's an old stigma that it's too hot to grow good grapes here, however wineries like Grace Patriot Wines are shattering that stigma and producing award winning wines! The food and wine culture they are cultivating is the real 'gold' in Gold Country! #CaliforniaWild Visit Gold Country
Welcome to the heart of California’s farming community where vegetables, fruit and cheese are as fresh as they come - California's Central Valley! We spent the afternoon at Séka Hills Olive farm. But don't make the mistake of thinking they just grow olives - they grow/produce everything! Honey, vinegar, organic asparagus, wine, hummus, beef jerky and more! It was a delicious afternoon driving around the farm, and doing a tasting. No need for dinner tonight! #CaliforniaWild #CentralValley
Most places deliver a newspaper in the morning, but at Mar Vista Cottages, they deliver fresh eggs in the morning! What would you rather have?! #CaliforniaWild
I love it when places surprise me with something unexpected. #NorthCoast California is not only home to all the great beaches and water adventures you would expect from the #CaliforniaWild Coast, but it is also a mecca for lighthouses! That's right - the East coast is not the only coast with lighthouses! We visited 4 different lighthouses in the region - all perched in stunning coastal landscapes! You had to cross through the ocean (at the right tide) to get to Battery Point Light. Point Arena Light is the tallest West coast light coast that you can walk to the top (and there are beautiful views up there!). Cabrillo Light rents out their lightkeeper cottages for vacation rentals! And Trinadad Light proves you don't have to be tall to be effective! Do your own lighthouse tour of the North Coast! #ThisisAdventure
NEW BLOG POST: Trollstigen Road is a Drive You'll Never Forget. I felt like Jack and the Beanstalk climbing into the unknown, dodging mythical trolls and wondering if I would ever make it back down. But this was one of the main reasons I wanted to do a Norway road trip, to drive this road of trolls. #VistiNorway Visit Norway
Want to feel like you've shrunk to the size of a mouse? Visit the Redwoods in California's North Coast! Today it was all about trees as we visited and hiked through the Redwood National and State Parks (NPS) and the Avenue of the Giant's Founder's Grove. Some are as tall as 370 ft! You can walk around them, through them, and even try to hug one if you'd like! But it's more than just trees, it's the whole incredible environment that these old beauties survive in. #CaliforniaWild #Thisisadventure
We had a long afternoon drive today -so it was great to spend the morning on the water at Whiskeytown National Recreation Area in Shasta Cascade kayaking and SUP'ing! They have free ranger led kayak/SUP tours daily in the summer. It was so lovely to be out on the lake surrounded by mountains and sunshine today! #CaliforniaWild
"The land is restless and one day, as sure as you can stand here, these mountains will roar to life once again." --sign at Lassen Volcanic National Park. This was my first visit to this lesser known park in the Shasta Cascade Region - and it was everything I was hoping for; beautiful views, great hiking, colorful landscapes, and just the right amount of people! #CaliforniaWild
Meet my #CaliforniaWild Travel partners and fellow storytellers (Border Free Travels, Kirsten Alana, Stuffed Suitcase Family Travel & Fun) ! The 4 of us, plus our great driver, Kelly, get on the road today in our Suburban packed like a Jenga game! Yes - we have lots of gear.
Our first region? Shasta Cascade - the Northeast corner of the state! Follow along -> https://www.adventure.travel/california/
Watch what happens when I put on overalls and become a goat farmer for a day! Visit Norway
Read the entire story here -> https://www.ottsworld.com/blogs/norway-itinerary-goat-farm-norddal/
Starting Today...8 regions in 19 days! This is going to be a really incredible 3 weeks to explore California! We'll be sampling the adventurous sides of California you've likely not heard about! Check out our stops on the map below! Or follow along on all of the social media from the whole #CaliforniaWild team at https://www.adventure.travel/california/
I can't believe it's September already! Tomorrow is my 11 year anniversary of leaving my corporate life behind and traveling the world. How time flies...
NEW BLOG POST: Add This Goat Safari to Your Norway Itinerary. “Do you want to take the baby goats to pasture, “ Farmer Petter asked me. My eyes lit up and I felt 7 years old again. “Yes, yes! I’d love to take the baby goats anywhere!” I replied. Oh happy day! I’m not sure what it is about farms, but no matter how old you are, you revert back to that kid that just wants to play with the animals. That was me…at 47 years old. #VisitNorway Visit Norway
Kicking off my next travels! I'll be taking you to California...to parts you seldom hear about! Get off the beaten path with me and see 8 rural regions of California in a new way; rugged, natural, unadulterated places that are prime for adventures. I'll be traveling for 3 weeks through #CaliforniaWild and be sure to follow along with the hashtag!
I'm giving away a travel prize pack from Exodus Travels (Exodus kit bag, Taste of Adventure cookbook, and a $500 gift card to Exodus Travels)! All you have to do to be eligible to win it is enter their Win a Trip For Life Contest - and ahem...who wouldn't want that?!
Enter at this website link - https://winatripforlife.com/ - AND let me know you did so by commenting on this FB post below!
You must do BOTH to be eligible. You will then be entered for my travel prize pack AND the Trip for Life Contest!
Entry ends September 15th. Winner notified Oct. 1st
Win A Trip for Life Contest Terms and Conditions apply. US and Canadian Residents Only!
Fishing means you spend a lot of time just soaking up the landscape around you; it’s meditative, calming, and quiet. And there are few places as beautiful as the Norway Fjords to have to stare at for a day holding a fishing pole! See what I caught and learn more about fishing in Norway here -> https://www.ottsworld.com/blogs/norway-fishing-with-guide-romsdalsfjorden/
Who wants one?!!
Last night I went to the First Friday art walk in Denver. Saw some fascinating and strange art. But my favorite was this - poetry as you wait on the streets. You provide a topic (mine was nomadic), and they write a poem, right there on the spot. I loved my smoking poet Abigale - how do you think she did?
You know those great pairings of people that work well together...Lucy and Ricky, Snoopy and Woodstock, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. I just was introduced to another great pairing tonight in Denver - pickles and beer. And I'm not just talking about eating/drinking them as a pair - but actually making them in partnership! The Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project Sage Beer ingredients were used in the The Real Dill's pickles! I went to a little launch party for Colorado Wild Sage Pickles - part of the Briners and Brewers Series. But all you really need to know is that it was a pair made in heaven...and I walked away with a jar of pickles!
Would you eat pickles and beer?
NEW BLOG POST: Norway Fjord Fishing. I am not a very good fisherman and tend to catch super small fish (which I believe are the hardest fish to catch), I figured Norway would be the perfect place to fish and hone my skills. Fishing means you spend a lot of time just soaking up the landscape around you; it’s meditative, calming, and quiet. And there are few places as beautiful as the Norway Fjords to have to stare at for a day holding a fishing pole! #VisitNorwayUSA Visit Norway
Visit the best fjords in Norway by car! A road trip of Fjord Norway takes Michaela Potter and me through the region on some of the world's most beautiful and nail biting drives. See where we went and what we did outside of the car throughout the region! And use this to plan your own trip to Visit Norway!
What happens when you hold a Great Horned Owl? It dances of course! It was a bit imtimidating when it would look me in the eyes...those big yellow eyes!
An incredible 'up-close' day visiting the Alberta Birds of Prey Foundation!
A little 'comfort camping' aka Glamping in Writing On Stone Provincial Park was just what the doctor ordered. A great alternative for those who don't want to pack along all of their camping gear! We grilled out, made s'mores, hiked, and enjoyed our little pocket of canvas paradise! #MyBadlands
A week in the Badlands of Canada was a combination of open spaces, rural living, incredible landscapes, cowboy culture, ancient history, ranches, spirituality, and it left me speechless. Speechless because it's a hard environment to describe. This underdog of the Alberta Province is special, so special it's hard to put into words. It's the heart of the province, and I think the best word I can find is freedom. The freedom you feel when you look out on a never ending horizon is powerful. Can't wait to share more of it with you in writing! But for now - check out these pics of the landscapes I experienced! #MyBadlands
Today we went to the pinnacle of corn events - the Taber Cornfest 2017! Taber is known for producing the best corn in Canada - super sweet and tender! They even have a corn eating contest, but sadly we couldn't attend the contest - so we held our own! Watch as Susan from The Insatiable Traveler and I go head to head...or should I say cob to cob! Who wins...oh the suspense! #MyBadlands Taber Chamber
It's called Badlands for a reason...The name "Badlands" is an exact English translation of French term "les mauvaises terres" (bad lands), by which in 1743 French Canadian explorers described this terrain when on their travels through the Prairies they first had encountered the landscapes of mesas, buttes, canyons, coulees, and gullies. They found the area to be arid land unsuitable to farming and thus they retained the appropriate term "bad lands." #MyBadlands