It's Beginning

April, 1 2018

Been thinking a lot about my next step to take. I've come up with so many different ideas and directions I could go. It's super exciting, yet overwhelming. Each direction could drastically change my life. Then, I hopped on Nala and started paddling around Mead Lake, during my road trip. Something happened. Was it the start of the 2018 season?! Yes, but there was something else. Something bigger. More like, a complete calmness overcame me. Everything just turned off and I had this deep feeling, this is right where I am supposed to be.

I have known for sometime, I need to be out in nature fueling my passions. What I didn't know is how badly I really need that in life. Clearly, I am addicted to adventures and traveling, but want to have a reason to travel. Not just travel to travel. I need a project, direction, and purpose to my travels. All of this was racing through my mind, as I was searching for a spot. A spot to take a photo, but not any photo. A photo that speaks to me. One that showcases scale, layers, and with me paddling.

Love the scale of this!

Got it! This was the photo I was hunting for. One that shows the scale and beauty of our amazing planet, yet with me doing what I love. See the fun part is how that person could be anyone, which was my vision behind the shot. You, Me, or someone else. To inspire you to get out and do what your love! When you are doing what you love, who cares about all that other crap. These are the kind of photos I want to continue to capture, but something needs to change. My current path is holding me back.       

I am at a fork in the road. I have multiple paths, but torn between them. Let me narrow them down a bit to 3. 3 very reasonable options I can potentially go in the near future. 

1) Staying in my job, staying in Minnesota, and continue to do what I have been doing. - Burnt out on MN and tired of corporate world/mindset.

2) Staying in my job, getting more flexibility to work remote (?), travel around North America - Up to my work, but would be like having best of both worlds.

3) Quitting my job, hitting the road on one massive adventure around North, Central, and South America doing what I love, searching for a new place to call home. - Unknown, unpredictable, and a list of ? to answer. 

The first options is not really an option for me. I need to mix it up. I need to move onward. Push myself more, raise the stakes, and make harder challenges for the passions I love. One of my next projects is hunting alpine lakes to paddle, which option 1 is just going to hold me back. Clearly there are no alpine lakes in Minnesota, so I would have to use PTO. However, I already max out every day of PTO I get as is. I end up wasting so much time just getting to places, instead of being able to spend more time in remote areas achieving my goals. This is why option 1 is not going to work. The second options, at least allows me to be working remote out in those areas. So travel time is drastically cut down to pretty much nothing. I would still end up maxing out my PTO and I would still have to deal with all the corporate crap. The only real upside is the money. Is it really worth it? The last option is a complete unknown. I would leave my job spring/summer 2019, pack up Lana with all my gear,  and hit the road. Seeing where the adventure takes me. Yeah I have some Xs I want to hit, but leave a lot open. Just see where life takes me. End goal is to find an amazing destination to establish a unique Airbnb experience for others to come visit.

Now that was a great way to kickoff the season!

One thing is for sure, clearly I have a knack for documenting adventures. This has to be one of my favorite things to do! Documenting the journey, adventures, and people doing what they love. It incorporates all of my passions into one, which is exactly what I should be doing on this planet. I know I will be documenting my adventures one way or another. I just see the greater picture and know the last option would allow me to do this full-time. Plus, it would allow me to continue to meet some amazing people, see some fantastic places, challenge myself, and expand my skillset.

  • Trying out a different rig
  • Love this!
  • Untitled photo
  • Love this!
  • Love this shot!
  • Hello my love. I missed you. Ready for our first paddle of 2018?!
  • Lana even loves the views!
  • Just around the corner

So now what?

What route do I go?

Ha yeah welcome to my world. Those thoughts are racing through my mind daily. I do know what route I am leaning towards, probably noticeable from what you just read. But is there another way? How can I smooth out the transition? Where would my money come from? Those are just a few questions that I ask myself, ha others ask me too. Yes, there is another way. Combine 2 and 3. Wait what? Well I can start off on the path of 2, pending I get the approval to be remote full-time or most of the time. This would allow me to knock out a whole heck of a lot, as long as I keep my performance up (not really an issue). Ok, so now I am on the road, working remote, chasing my goals/projects. I would be making good money and could leave at any time really, if shit gets worse. I would also have time to save more, which would allow me to go longer and not worry about money too. At the same time, beef up my Print Shop more, would love to sell more prints too. Transitioning 2-3 years later, no matter what I am leaving the corporate world in a few years. Ideally, before I head into Central/South America. 

And so it begins. Keep on keeping on for a few more months to see how things pan out this summer/fall. My work is in a transition and moving locations to an open work environment, this summer. So a ton is about to change. Late summer early fall, I should have a better idea what my flexibility will ultimately be. If not in my favor, then around this time next year I would be putting in my notice. I can hold out for a little while longer to see what happens, but ultimately I need to pursue my goals and dreams in the world! I was not put on this planet to work in a cube, I am meant to document amazing adventures around the world. To push myself to unlock my hidden potential. But most importantly, to inspire others to do what they love in life.

In the meantime, I will keep working on my photography skills, continue to build out Lana, and start planning my master route. Well more so some the details of my route. Don't want to plan it all out now, save some of the fun down the road. As for Lana, I have some changes I want to make on the interior to better my living/working environment. Along with some other upgrades like suspensions, brakes, recovery, and maybe an engine swap. I am also going to get a motobike! Little 200-400cc something I can cruise, yet carry my SUP or bike on too. That way, Lana is a base camp and my motorbike is my way to get around and explore. Needs to handle pavement and off-road (two track) terrain. Have lots of bikes in mind, just waiting for more to pop up this spring. Not looking to break the bank, ideally get more of a project bike so I can tailer it to my needs/likes easier. Lastly, of course take tons of photos throughout the year. Get on some fun shorter adventures, due to limited PTO. Also see if I can land that gig with Wilderness Inquiry to be a photography intern, aka document their trips. I would be going on 3-5 this year to take photos and document, like I do for my personal trips. That way they have more content to promote their programs and all that. I will learn more about that later this month. 

Lots going on and that means I might have to miss some stuff. Again, nothing personal but if it sets me back from the directions I want to go, I'll probably skip out of it. Now is the time to keep this momentum going, stay on track, and get this big ol adventure going!