"A glimpse into my world" worldtrekker's Profile
Travel is a passion of mine. I guess that's not surprising since you're finding me here. My mother was born in Germany and her first time to the USA was just after she married my father who is an American. They met as pen pals by the way. Since she left her family behind, we would make a trip to Europe every summer to visit. I was lucky in that way! I grew up bilingual and this was a definite advantage in getting one of my future jobs.
Before going away to college, my travels had mainly been with family. During my junior year of college I studied abroad in Heidelberg, Germany and then in Queensland, Australia. Definitely my best year of studies! After graduation, I really started to do the type of traveling I wanted to do, which was adventure traveling. When I travel now, I seek out naturally beautiful places; National Parks, off the beaten path, and anyplace where I have the chance to see wildlife in its natural environment and take part in some type of outdoor sporting activity. Being active when I travel is important and this could include hiking, mountain biking, cycling, sea kayaking, horseback riding, white water rafting, skiing, etc. I'm pretty much open to doing anything active in the outdoors. I'm generally not a city guy, although there are some cities which I have enjoyed including Vancouver, San Francisco, and Prague.
The photo is of my friend Jana from Germany enjoying a peaceful moment on the southern coast of Western Australia. This was off the beaten path and you need a 4x4 to get here. It was definitely worth the effort!
Photography is another passion of mine. It is something I've been interested in for as long as can remember.
This photo is of a reflection in a puddle just after sunrise in the Bungle Bungles of Western Australia.
I worked as an adventure tour guide based out of Los Angeles from 1995 - 2001. It was an unbelievable experience! I traveled all over the USA, Canada, Alaska, and Baja in Mexico. Although it was a ton of responsibility leading these tours, it was worth it. I met so many fantastic people and experienced some pretty incredible places and at the same time I was being paid! Not a lot mind you, but enough since there were virtually no expenses for the guide. The company I worked for was Crossroads Adventures. This is where my German fluency came in handy since most of my guests were German. Photo is of me waiting to load the tour van at Camp Run-a-muk in Hyder, Alaska. This particular tour started for me at the Mexican border in Arizona and ended in Anchorage, Alaska 6 weeks later. For some of the tour participants however, the trip began in Patagonia, Argentina 7 months earlier!! This tour was organized through Dragoman in the UK.
I really enjoy observing animals in the wild. I could watch a moose and it's calf for an hour without getting bored. The way animals live their daily lives in order to survive just fascinates me.
In 2002, I was also looking for a job and actually found one as a wildlife caretaker at the Theodore Roosevelt Sanctuary and Audubon Center in Oyster Bay, NY. This was only part time and entry level but I've had the opportunity to work with some really interesting animals - various owls, red tailed hawks, a bald eagle, a peregrine falcon, American kestrels, a cormorant, and some reptiles among others. It's not glamorous, but I've learned a lot. What I enjoyed even more was working as an intern at the sanctuary that summer banding songbirds. I was fascinated with the types of birds that actually live here on Long Island or that pass through here on migration. Getting a close look at them in hand is also a very interesting experience. In the fall we also did raptor banding on Fire Island. This was on a volunteer basis and I went down there to help out one day. While I was there, we caught 4 sharp shinned hawks in our mist-net. Pictured here is one of them in-hand. During the summer I also got the chance to help band Canadian Geese with the Department of Environmental Conservation.
Observing animals in the wild is a major highlight for me on trips. This bear was hanging out on the side of the road not too far from Stewart in British Columbia (Canada). I pulled up beside it with my tour group and we watched it for about 20 minutes. Each time a logging truck roared past, it would stand up and watch it go by. Maybe it knew that its forest was being cut down... :-(
The best places to observe wildlife that I've found are in Alaska (Katmai, Hyder, Denali, Kenai Fjords, Chena Hot Springs), Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, Jasper and Banff National Parks in Canada, Glacier National Park in Montana, and in Australia (Wilson's Promontory, The Grampians, Mon Repos Turtle Rookery, Eungella N.P., Flinders Ranges). Of course wildlife can show up anywhere but these places are all pretty reliable for sightings.
I love to go exploring in the mountains. It's also often prime wildlife habitat! This here is Denali (formerly known as Mt. McKinley); the highest mountain in North America.
Another incredibly scenic mountain range is the Canadian Rockies between Banff and Jasper.
Colorado is another great place to visit if you like mountains. I lived near Vail for 5 months during ski season one year. Colorado has excellent skiing and beautiful mountain scenery.
This beach in Australia is one of my favorites. We stopped here while sailing around the Whitsunday Islands. Australia was by far the best trip I've undertaken outside of my tour guide life. I spent 5 months traveling the entire continent with a 4x4 Landcruiser. It's one of those life experiences that you think back on and wish you were there again.
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