In two weeks, on September 11th, the Farm To Table Cycle starts. An opportunity for everyone to look at the vibrant food ecosystem that exists throughout the country and especially in New England. Follow along here, on Facebook and at www.farmtotablecycle.com.
I often ask myself how can I make a difference. How can I use the skills and the passions that I have, to affect a change for the positive. Over the last several years, as I have traveled the world, I have come to believe in the power of the lone traveler to break down barriers and in the ability of imagery to open our eyes to the world around us.
With these brief thoughts, I am super stoked to announce my first effort to proactively make a difference in a cause that I feel strongly about. In conjunction with Wholesome Wave, I will embark on a Journey through New England this September documenting the rich and vibrant local food systems and how this organization is reshaping the way we all have access to fresh foods.
It is my and our hope, that by using a simple bicycle, along with my camera, I will be able to tell the story of the people, the organizations, the communities and the farms that are working so hard to bring all of us, but especially the undeserved, fresh, locally grown food.
The story will unfold at our new Micro Site -- www.farmtotablecycle.com and on my stories site. I hope you will follow along, contribute to the cause where you can, and if you are in the path of this trip, come out and join me at any event or cycling leg.
We all have the power to make a difference.
This is just a quick post on what a high desert packing kit can be. For this trip, we carried up to two full days of water and food and planned for zero precipitation. For me, this was one of my lighter loads with minimal extra kit. Water was carried in a camelback Mule, a spare water pack that could be lashed wherever was practical and a feedbag on the handlebars which always held 24 ounces of water. The trip was on a FS Spearfish thus minimizing any 'frame' bag space, an obvious location to store mucho water.... Since this is a quick post, fire questions and I will attempt to expand where needed:
Front Roll Bag
- Bivy (UL Cuben)
- Pad - Neo Air
- Small Food Bag
- Cap 4 top
- Wool knickers
- Spare socks
- Rain Jacket/Wind Break
- Sleep bag
- Down sweater
- Tool bag
- Co2 kit
- Light headlamp **
- Fuel (Alcohol)
- Stove (Trangia)
- V1 in feed bag
- Snacks on top tube
- Snacks, water in feed bag, makeshift
- Light **
- Cam batteries and filters
- Electronic ditty (Batteries, cables, etc)
- Warm Hat
- Warm Gloves
- Arm Warmers
- First aid
- Shock pump
- Snow peak pot
- Bib Shorts
- Over Shorts
- Sidi Shoes
Food was stuffed wherever. The Camelback Mule did not provide the flexibility to carry food. I would not choose that pack again. Also, as noted, this was on a Spearfish. With a Frame Bag, spare water would go there and lighter, bulkier items would go in the backpack where applicable. Carrying 1 or 2 platypus bags as backup water storage along with your choice of straps for lashing them in different spots is critical.
Logistically or philosophically, I carry only what will be used. Therefore my on bike clothing is my camp clothing with the obvious exception of my bibs. Get to camp, take off bibs, add puffy, gloves, hat and I am set.
Below is an image of a similar load out on the Oregon Outback. With the addition of a full size frame bag I was able to ditch the backpack. Camera gear was carried on handlebars using a makeshift camera bag lashed to the bars.
It is easy to get caught up in all that exists around us. The rush of day to day life can overtake us in the blink of an eye. I know that for me, the switch to Leica has enabled me to slow down even more with my photography; to become even more contemplative in what I am trying to accomplish. The simplicity of the range finder and manual focus lenses just lends itself to slowing down.
Applying the same principals to other aspects of my life is paramount to long term peacefulness. Recently I found myself making coffee in the ho-hum bulk way of a big drip machine. The coffee, even with fresh grounds, just never tastes as good as it does when I brew it one cup at a time.
Yesterday I received my little kit from Stumptown Roasters that included the travel Porlex Grinder; a travel drip kit from Snow Peak; a small ceramic cup; and a bag of their lovely beans. Learning to slow down in all facets of life is good, but especially with your morning cup of coffee....
I always find that my adventures teach me more than I could ever have imagined and that my images are the words and the memories of all those lessons. The path, that which we follow, always leads us to new and beautiful places. Trusting in it, giving in to it, is the way I choose to live my life.
Here, Josh and Erik, contemplate the fact that we see no end in sight.
The power of a bike, not only as a form of transportation and recreation, but as a tool to help cleanse the soul. We climbed hard that day and were rewarded with a vista that required no words to describe -- we simply sat, in awe of the natural beauty.