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What 7 Weeks of Travel Looks & Feels Like

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What 7 Weeks of Travel Looks & Feels Like

The beginning of my year has been amazing so far. I've gone on 7 consecutive trips to climbing destinations across Texas and the southern United States. It can be tiring to constantly go go go, but I take my opportunities when they arise because I never know if they'll show themselves again. Because of this I plan on being gone every weekend usually, and I tell people I'm not free from Friday - Sunday night, simply because I delegate that time for myself. Something new this year is the importance i've put on photography and using it to help tell my stories in a way that people can appreciate from a quick glance, and I'm loving it so far. 

Denis and our guide checking out a "Hueco" (an indentation in the rock) 

Denis and our guide checking out a "Hueco" (an indentation in the rock) 

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Traveling at the beginning of the year usually means grabbing your lowest degree sleeping bag but this year the south has seemingly skipped our winter haha. It's made my travels to Oklahoma, New Mexico, and El Paso (All more cold than my native Dallas) not so bad temperature wise. Last year this time I was freezing my toes off in a 40 degree bag in Horseshoe canyon ranch with temps as low as 22 degrees...AND it rained on us! Needless to say God has smiled on the south this year and the coldest I've endured so far has been low 40s and maybe some high 30s at night. 

"Trent, don't you ever get tired??" something my friend Mo said to me while we were hiking through the massive boulder field on the side of upper Mt. Scott. I replied like Bruce Banner (The Hulk in Avengers) "That's my secret Mo....I'm always tired" as I turned into the incredible human hiking machine. All jokes aside, yes I do feel fatigue hahah.. It can be exhausting to hike to a climb, climb all day, and then hike back up the mountain to the camp site, like we did in New Mexico. The key is to not let it consume you, a lot of the time before I leave on a trip, I'm feeling exhausted from the week at work and school. I'll attribute making myself push thru usually to already having solid plans in place, but also to the fact that I keep my psych level HIGH!!!! I'm always hyped to get outside. 

Feeling a little tired after a 70 foot 5.12b at Sitting Bull Falls, NM

Feeling a little tired after a 70 foot 5.12b at Sitting Bull Falls, NM

Partially what I look forward to on these trips is the connections that are made. On the way to New Mexico, Doland, mentioned that he was interested in Rope Access work, and Denis just happened to know a guy who owned a company who need Rope Access workers. I kid you not, Doland called the guy as we shopped for food in a Carlsbad, NM Walmart and got hired on the spot. Later on in the trip when we went to Hueco Tanks, Doland and I would find ourselves sat around a campfire with two other guys. We sat and talked about the "soul of rock climbing" and a bunch of other hippie stuff haha. As we talked with the guys we found out that our plan to "walk on" to Hueco Tanks wouldn't work because all the spots would be filled before we could talk to the rangers. As luck would have it one of the guys we were talking to was a certified guide for Hueco Tanks, and would end up being our guide the next day. The guy was super awesome, and actually knew Denis from Baltimore when Denis worked at the climbing gym there. It was really cool to see how we're all connected in ways we don't even know, unless we connect with others.

Doland (Left) Denis (Center) and our Guide, looking at a few warm up routes in Hueco Tanks.

Doland (Left) Denis (Center) and our Guide, looking at a few warm up routes in Hueco Tanks.

Alec feeling good after a full day on the wall.

Alec feeling good after a full day on the wall.

The whole purpose of this website and me writing is to inspire people to get outside and be bold. I want to inspire adventure, because I've seen what it does for me and how rewarding it is. So far i've taken 4 people out this year who have never climbed outside before, and we had a blast. You don't need to be on my climbing level to enjoy climbing outside with me, or for anyone for that matter. A good attitude, willingness to learn, and persistence is all it takes to enjoy climbing or doing anything really. 

I love the life I live. I love sharing my passion with others through my writing and photos. If you ever want to learn how to climb, go camping, take cool photos, plan a trip, or just talk, we have a "Contact Us" page or you can just message us on Facebook!

Onto the next adventure!

Onto the next adventure!

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The Importance of a Road Trip

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The Importance of a Road Trip

I've done a LOT of road trips in the last two and a half years, mainly because of rock climbing. It's a lot cheaper to take my car that can go 400 miles on $20 of gas, than spend $400 to go to Colorado on a plane. As a kid, I would go on road trips with my dad to Kansas city to visit my aunt for the 4th of July every year. I spent my time watching movies on my portable DVD player while the hours passed by. Fast forward 15 years, I take a road trip every week to different climbing destinations across the Southern states. 

everywhere I  drove  in 2016. 

everywhere I drove in 2016. 

Road trips are sort of a special time for me now. I usually have 1 or 2 friends in the car with me and we'll talk from Dallas to Arkansas and not even realize the time that's passed. It's a super important part of the traveling experience for me now. If you sit and think about it, when was the last time you sat and talked to someone for 4 hours.. I know exactly when that was for me, it was last Saturday driving from Austin back home with my friend Frank. A lot of the time we go through life taking a few minutes every hour or so talking to someone and moving on with our day. Even your boy/girlfriend or spouse, I doubt you've spent 4 hours talking to them in a long while. I've discovered friends in people I disliked previously, found a gentle person behind a tough exterior, and all while behind the steering wheel of my Ford Focus. 

Myself on a 5.13b in Austin.

Myself on a 5.13b in Austin.

I also enjoy the road trip time because it helps me appreciate my final destination. Being from the concrete jungle that is Dallas, I don't have any outdoor climbing within 3-4 hours. I spend most of my time training in the gym with my outdoor goals burned into my brain. When I'm on the road to Hueco Tanks, New Mexico, Colorado or Arkansas (they're all 5hr + drives) I know that I've only got my short time in these places and then I've gotta go back home on Sunday. This can be one of the best motivators, knowing that you've got limited time in a place and you've got to make the most of your time there. And this can be broadened into a super deep "We only have a limited time on Earth so make the most of your short trip" analogy that rock climbing is FULL of, but I won't get TOO sappy on ya. Basically my hours in the car make me calm down and think about how fortunate I am to be where I am, and to be able to do the things I do. 

Besides all the warm fuzzy parts of talking with people on road trips, uhh I need people so I can stay awake. Despite what anyone tells you "OH bro I can drive forever at night, don't even worry." everyone gets sleepy driving, and especially at night. If you get in my car for a road trip and you plug in headphones and expect me to chauffeur you to our destination, you're gonna be paying me for it. Unplug from your devises and plug into the people around you, because it's incredibly unique to be able to have someone's attention for hours at a time without having to pay them. 

Road trips are about relationships, learning about your friends and partners, and appreciating your time. I think everyone needs a good road trip in their life to escape the go go go way that most of us live. There's no rushing the trip, we'll get there when we get there, just enjoy the ride. 

Horatio, Mario, Myself, and Denis 

Horatio, Mario, Myself, and Denis 

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