Forty-Seven: The Most Important Question

great sand dunes - val in real life

So long 46. It’s been another wild ride around the sun. As always, I indulge in a good bit of navel-gazing as I celebrate my personal new year. I have a habit of looking back and considering what the previous year was about. It’s a sort of mental wrap-up that allows me to put the year in a box and …

The Motorcycle Conundrum

bmw f700gs - val in real life

There’s a saying in the motorcycling world that the perfect number of bikes is always one more than you currently have, also known as the “N+1” formula. A lot of time it’s a matter of having different bikes that serve different purposes. Sometimes it’s simply that each machine is its own special joyous unicorn of form and function—embracing the different …

Standing in the Rain with Wild Horses

wild horses nevada - val in real life

Four months without a rain drop. Now a storm was finally coming in. A big one. Soft, diffuse light begged to be honored, courtesy of the now-unfamiliar cloud cover I hadn’t seen in months. I hastily packed up my photography gear and told myself I needed to get in a few hours of shooting. The textures of historic Virginia City and …

Skills Entropy

I pulled into the campsite completely stoked. We’d scored a fabulous site on a busy holiday weekend. It was my first camping trip with George in years. In fact, it was our first-ever camping trip with just the two of us. It was also my first car-camping trip since moving to Nevada. My camping systems were in complete disarray from the …

For the Love of Taco Trucks

We had angered the taco gods. Now they were withholding their beneficence. We believed that the last taco truck we had passed would be the last taco truck that we would see. We were dehydrated and it was affecting our ability to make decisions. The afternoon heat was more than we had expected for the day’s ride. Especially after nearly perfect …