Field Trip: Death Valley National Park

I don’t think I’ll ever be able to express how much I love my major and everything that it has allowed me to do. Geology has opened up a whole new world that I never knew existed. It makes me feel alive. It makes everything I do feel relevant. It has taken me to the most incredible places and has allowed me to build so many friendships.

My most recent field-trip was (ironically) with my plant ecology class to Death Valley National Park. I couldn’t believe how beautiful such a harsh environment could be. Its a different world out there. Time doesn’t exist.

Badwater Basin:

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This place was so different than anything I’ve ever experienced before (and I grew up in the desert).

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Artist’s Drive (while piled on the roofs of our vehicles):

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Ballarat, CA (the remnants a ghost town):

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Photos by Mikenna Montgomery and myself.

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Big Sur: Part 1

About a month ago, a couple friends and I drove up Highway 1 to Big Sur. With only ideas of the places we thought we’d find along the way, Kat, Katy, and I set off for what turned out to be one of the most amazing road trips yet.

Our first stop was at the breathtaking, yet inaccessible, Pfeiffer Beach. This natural wonder was created by a landslide in 1983 after a wildfire altered the stability of the slopes above the cove. Here, you can hike along a scenic trail above the cove giving great views of the waterfall cascading down the bluffs and panoramic views of the Big Sur coastline.

Pfeiffer Beach, Big Sur:

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Big Sur: Part 2 coming soon!

feat: Kat & Katy

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Photo Diary: This Was My First Weekend Off

Pismo Beach, CA:

You’d think it was summer.

 

Contracting frostbite:

Welcome to Iceland (jk it’s just really cold):

 

January in California.

feat. Kat

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Recap: Living on the West Coast

It’s been a while since I’ve had the chance to update this blog regularly, so I’ve decided to introduce a series of “Recaps” in order to document the past few months of my whirlwind of a life.

I currently live in the quaint, college town of San Luis Obispo, which is surrounded by the most breathtaking scenery (aka the ocean). Given the fact that I grew up in a place drier than the Sahara, I don’t think I could ever take my close proximity to the beach for granted.

The following pictures are an accumulation of my (countless) trips to local beaches:

Avila Beach:

 

Montana de Oro:

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(Recap: Part One)

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Day Trip: Ocotillo Wells

I’m back in the pits of hell for winter break and the first thing on my mind is getting my ass outside. Living the double life of a full-time college student and a part-time retail associate doesn’t leave much time for adventuring (although I wouldn’t change it for the world).

Anyway, this weekend I was invited to go on a Jeeping expedition with my dad and a few of his friends. We drove down to where the Salton Sea meets the Borrego badlands and explored the clay hills outlining the desert floor. Lets just say my geological dreams flourished and my need for thrill-seeking adventures has only elevated.

Have a look ~

Jeeping through the hills of the Anza-Borrego National Park:

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Sandstone canyons within the hills (I was in here for hours):

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We drove the Jeep up to an abandoned calcite mine:

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Veins of calcite embedded in sandstone:

The desert is anything but dead.

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Take a Hike

This week, I embarked on a solo-hike up the San Jacinto Mountains, in hopes of reaching Tahquitz Peak (elevation 8,846 ft). After almost five miles of steady, snaking incline, I was shut out by a sudden shower of pouring rain. I decided to turn around, with my final destination only a mile away (disappointing, I know).

Truly, I made this decision to please the two older, concerned woman whom I had stumbled upon, while on the trail. They were weathered hikers. “We can feel the storm in the air,” they told me and they were right. The storm was glorious.

 

 

  

Join me on my next ascent to the peak (I’ll check the weather, I promise).

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A Weekend Away: I Fell in Love with San Diego

Pacific Beach in San Diego, CA.

To our surprise, Francis and I witnessed a marriage proposal at the end of the pier – traveling pianist, a bottle of champagne, and all.

   

Beforehand, we had eaten sandwiches and milkshakes on the beach (feat. our very hip blanket).

feat. (my roommate + college companion) Francis Lara

This weekend was 10/10 a blast ~

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