What is Adventure Travel?

Adventure Travel - Val in Real Life

I’ve been in full-tilt travel mode the last few weeks between three different events. And guess what? Much of that time has been spent riding in the rain, sleeping in a soggy tent, and finding creative ways to extract my motorcycle from mud bogs. It’s been extraordinarity difficult. And I’d do it all again. But make no mistake about the …

Joining Progressive for Bikes, Blues, and BBQ

Bikes, Blues, and BBQ - Val in Real Life

A couple of weeks ago, I partnered with Progressive Insurance to ride to my first major motorcycle rally. Since my motorcycling interests skew towards adventure travel, most of my experience has been with events of the overlanding variety. I knew Bikes, Blues, and BBQ in Fayetteville, Arkansas would be a completely different beast than my typical haunts of Overland Expo …

Parenting Teens

Val in Real Life

This week when I shared the nuts-and-bolts of visiting Bandelier National Monument, I had to think back to why I enjoyed camping there so much. Certainly it’s a very agreeable campground in a technical sense but really it was that the time with my sons went well. There are so many challenges to traveling in a small car with two …

Foundations

val in real life

Back in March I wrote about why it’s important to keep your bucket full. But I realized my thoughts at the time were an incomplete picture of the tools needed to weather unfortunate life events. A full bucket is actually about creating a foundation. When your bucket is full or close-to-full, it means you’ve been mindfully living your life. That …

2014: Real Adventure. Real Life.

Seems it’s that time again… to review one year before beginning another. With the 2015 calendar staring at us and inspiring introspection, I marvel at what 2014 held for me as well as my boys. 2014 Recap… Overall, 2014 was a year that began in lots of excitement but ended on a mellow note. The bulk of our adventures were …

Overland Expo West 2014

My first official destination of the Pacific Northwest Tour was Overland Expo 2014 at Mormon Lake in Arizona. This was my second year attending and after my first visit last year, I knew this event would be something I’d want to return to year-after-year. The largest reason part behind that is the reunion with some of my favorite outdoor folks, …

48 Days

This past Sunday, I wrapped up the Pacific Northwest tour my longest road trip ever, 48 days. Given the type of people I often associate with, the overlanding and dirtbag sorts, my trip is small beans. Even so, returning from an extended trip has it’s challenges whether it’s seven weeks or seven years. The longer you’re gone, the longer it …

Milestones

I had an entirely different postcard written for today but I’m scrapping that in favor of getting a little bit sentimental because today marks a pretty big milestone for Camp Granola. Today we find ourselves in Washington on the Pacific Northwest Tour, rounding out the lower 48 for us. We technically arrived in the Evergreen State last night but we …

The Liebster Award…

So my Hell Hike and Raft crew buddy, Adam, at Hiking the Trail tagged me in this Liebster Award thing. Apparently it’s been around for nearly a decade and the idea is to tag bloggers to learn more about them and their blogs. So here goes… The Rules: Link the person who tagged you. Answer the 11 questions that the …

Postcards from Real Life: Overland Expo 2014

Greetings from Overland Expo 2014! I’m currently surrounded by a sea of about 7,000 travel enthusiasts and experts which means I’m immersed in a fantastic travel community for the weekend. One of the things I love about attending events like this is the opportunity to expand my perspective on travel. Everyone here has different motivation driving them to explore and …