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The Andes

I was a couple of years along in university. The shine of new adulthood was fading. I went through a hard breakup. My band kicked me out. I was struggling at school. I felt alone, sad, and tired. I found solace in the mountains. The insignificance I felt among them was liberating. They had stood for millennia….

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Single Mothers Foundation

While traveling around Uganda I received a message from our friend Mira Seewald. “Are you going to Fort Portal?” “I think so.” “Well, if you do can you do me a favor and give a donation to Jonathan at the Single Mothers Foundation for me?” I was intrigued. We would visit Fort Portal. We met…

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A Quick Update

Oh my poor neglected blog! How has it been so long? Well, life has been busy, and it still is. After so many months of silence it seems a small summary, at the least, is due. I’ll start one year ago in March of 2017. We felt the crisp air of Patagonia for the first…

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El Chalten

The Fitzroy Massif, outside of El Chalten in Argentina, offers what is probably my favorite mountain skyline on earth. The world’s high places have always captivated me and the desire to see them has led to many strange corners of our planet. Southern Patagonia is home to such wild and iconic peaks. The golden granite…

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Torres del Paine

The 120 kilometer (75 mile) trail around Torres del Paine in southern Patagonia is one of the world’s best treks. It attracts all types. For those seeking comfort there are lodges, guides, restaurants, and even horses. That’s not really our style though and, as usual, we skipped having a guide and carried all of the…

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Puerto Natales

Once again we were back in Chile. This time near the famous Torres del Paine National Park. It was the final stop for my parents. We drank great wine, ate succulent seafood, and enjoyed friendly Chilean hospitality. We rented a car and drove through the park. Valerie and I were preparing to trek the 9-day…

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El Chalten

I have been dreaming about Patagonia since I was a boy. It has always held a mythical power in my imagination. It is a place of scoured earth, wind, and stone. My parents never thought they would go there. Even for me it took nearly thirty years of whispers before I put foot to ground….

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Valparaiso

Valparaiso is Santiago’s bohemian cousin on the coast. It is a beautiful, crumbling bastion of contrasts. Rickety funiculars rise up steep hills and ancient busses ply down clogged arterials. The architecture is beautiful, but the true star of the city is street art.

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Santiago

Santiago is an eminently livable city. It’s full of great food, the public tansportation is fast and efficient, and the people love to have a good time. It was a short stopover for us, but we reveled in the view from our high-rise apartment. My mother, father, Val, and I did our best to immitate…

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Arequipa

We came to Arequipa, Peru’s white city, to eat.  We wanted find out what Peruvian food was all about. We ate ceviche, grilled lamb, soups of all kind, and roasted chicken accompanied. We particularly loved a restaurant called Tupac – a seafood focuses Peruvian-Thai fusion restaurants. The epicurean delights didn’t stop with the food. We…

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Lake Titicaca

Homestays are always an interesting experience. It can be awkward, it can be transcendent, and it sometimes dizzily sways between the two. My parents, Dan and Terri, had recently joined us in Peru. We spent a comfortable week in and around Cusco, Peru’s frenetic and beautiful tourist city. We had eaten international food, shopped, had…

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Machu Picchu

It’s not easy to find a traveler, or anyone really, that hasn’t dreamed of visiting Machu Picchu. I had the pleasure of sharing my visit with my parents and Valerie. My father was not blessed with a strong ability to pronounce unfamiliar words, (in fact listening to his attempts is one of the greatest sources of…

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Cuenca

Cuenca is an exceedingly comfortable city in southern Ecuador. After spending a few weeks with the predominantly indigenous populations of the central part of the country we immediately notices a difference when we arrived. People were taller, had lighter skin, and dressed in western clothing. We met up with our friend Elliot and Stephanie who…

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Guamote Market

As the weather in Ecuador continued to spoil our trekking and climbing plans we shifted course and focused on humans. There is a small town about an hour away from Riobamba, it is called Guamote. It is not a puebla that is commonly found on the itinerary of travelers. That is exactly why we wanted…

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Riobamba

We had come to see mountains and trek through hillsides. Clouds, rain, and stomach problems kept our wanderings contained to the urban aspect of the Riobamba. We saw few other visitors and instead spent our time with the locals, it turned out to be a fascinating and nuanced few days.

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The Amazon

The Amazon touches 11 countries and is the defining feature of South America. By its very nature jungle is difficult to access. Rivers are the highways of the amazon and usually the only means of reliable transportation. We knew that we would visit the Amazon at some point on our trip through South America. The…

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Quito

After a wonderful time in the Galapagos we headed for Quito. As the oldest city in the Americas Quito is full of colonial charm. It sits some 10,000ft above sea level, quite a change from our lazy beach days. We arrived at the airport without any semblance of a plan. It was raining and the…

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Galapagos: Above Water

The Galapagos Islands are an almost mythical travel destination. When the naturalist Charles Darwin visited the flora and fauna prompted him to develop the theory of evolution. The landscape varies from barren wastelands to lush highlands, and all manner of steps in between. To say that islands are “otherworldly” is an understatement. Valerie and I…

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On the Road Again

Our lives are a repeating cycle of feverish work and long-term travel. Since returning to the USA in 2013 it has taken us three years of double shifts, penny-pinching, and austerity to be ready to travel again – but that time has finally come. I’m writing this from a guesthouse in Quito, Ecuador. Last week…

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Pusser’s Rum

In a fast-paced, ever-changing world it is refreshing to find something that hasn’t changed in a long time. Pusser’s Rum is a company based on tradition. They blend and distribute from five stills in Guyana and Trinidad. It has been made the same way for hundreds of years. Andrew Spurgin LTD and Snake Oil Cocktail…

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Arriana, Jordan & the Twins

Just a few weeks ago I photographed Arriana and Jordan before their twin daughters, Mia and Julia arrived. The twins are now a month old and were definitely ready for their first photoshoot. Here are a few selects from the session. My cuteness quota is used up for the year 🙂

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David & Felix

Few things are more beautiful than witnessing two people commit their lives to one another, especially when Bali is the setting. David, Felix and thirty friends and family made the journey, coming from three continents, to this small island at the center of the Indonesian archipelago. Bali oozes with its own unique charm. The smiles,…

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Elizabeth & Alfredo

Fifteen years is a long time to wait, but it’s worth it for your soulmate. Alfredo and Elizabeth knew this. They are truly destined for each other and their wedding expressed that perfectly. From the whimsical comic book details to the beautiful Catholic ceremony at the Immaculata Church the character of these two bright souls…

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Barrel Smoker Dinner III

On a sleepy Thursday morning I received a text from chef extraordinaire Andrew Spurgin, “can you shoot an event tonight?” I’ve learned that when Andrew invites me to an event it behooves me to make it happen, no matter how short the notice. The third instalment of the Barrel Smoker Dinner Series was no exception….

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