Tag Archives: Wilderness Ethics

Writers in the Woods: Award-winning outdoor adventure writer to share his experiences

A chronicler of the outdoors, an award-winning travel writer, and a part-time Grand Canyon river guide, Kevin Fedarko will speak at Sierra Nevada College at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 7, as the next guest for the Writers in the Woods Literary Series.

Kevin Fedarko bwKevin Fedarko’s work has appeared in Esquire, National Geographic Adventure and has been anthologized in The Best American Travel Writing of 2004 and 2006. His first book, “The Emerald Mile,” won the National Outdoor Book Award in 2013.

 “The Emerald Mile” tells the story of three guides who attempt to propel their boat down the Colorado River, which is swollen from a massive snowmelt that even threatens the safety of the Glen Canyon Dam. Their mission: to be the fastest boat to ever navigate Colorado River as it goes through the Grand Canyon.

The Emerald MileThe National Outdoor Book Award website says “Author Kevin Fedarko focuses on the three guides, but at the same time, he adeptly weaves into his narrative the broader story of the river itself, and the clash of two opposites:  those who love the wild untouched river – and those who desire to use the river for economic benefit.  Like the small wooden boat flung down the river, Emerald Mile is a riveting ride through history, politics and big dreams.”

The talented writer and journalist is a contributing editor at Outside magazine and known for his travel narratives. He was a staff writer at Time magazine from 1991-97, where he helped cover the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, according to Simon & Schuster’s biography on Fedarko.

“We’re excited to host an adventure writer who is so clearly aligned with what is characteristically SNC: someone who cares passionately about the environment, an entrepreneurial thrill-seeker who values the power of language and is committed to sustainable practices,” said English Program Chair June Saraceno.

The literary speaker series, Writers in the Woods, brings acclaimed authors, poets and screenwriters to Incline Village’s four-year, private university for readings and workshops throughout the academic year.

Fedarko will speak on the campus at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 7, in the Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences building, Room 139, and will follow with a morning workshop from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Nov. 8. The Friday reading is free, while the workshop will cost $50 for nonstudents. More information and sign-ups can be found at sierranevada.edu.

“I am currently reading ‘The Emerald Mile’ and it resounds with everything I love about the world of rafting and rivers in general. His writing really captures the soul of the river and I am excited to get a look at the process that went into writing such a powerful book,” said Junior Sage Sauerbrey, a New Media Journalism major who guides rafting trips in Idaho during the summers.

Writers in the Woods features a year-long line-up of well-known writers. Upcoming authors include:

Feb. 6-7 – Saeed Jones
Saeed Jones’s critically acclaimed poetry collection, “Prelude to a Bruise,” went into a second printing just months after its 2014 publication. He is an editor at BuzzFeed, and his poetry has appeared in publications like “Hayden’s Ferry Review,”  “West Branch,” “Weave,” “The Collagist,” and “Linebreak.” His chapbook, “When the Only Light Is Fire,” is published by Sibling Rivalry Press. He blogs about writing, contemporary culture, and the potentialities and limits of the “black gay poet” identity at For Southern Boys Who Consider Poetry.

March 6-7 – Mark Maynard
Mark Maynard is the author of “Grind,” a collection of short stories set in Reno. His short fiction has been widely published, and he is the fiction editor of the literary journal, “The Meadow.”

April 17-18 – Gailmarie Pahmeier and David Lee
Poet Gailmarie Pahmeier has published the poetry collection, “The Rural Lives of Nice Girls,” as well as several other books. She teaches at the University of Nevada, Reno. David Lee was Utah’s first poet laureate and is the author of 15 volumes of poetry.

 

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Have you ever? ODAL students reflect on life lessons in and out of the field

By Eliza Demarest

 “We have been learning to take care of ourselves in places that really matter. Crazy kids on the loose, but on the loose in the wilderness. That makes all the difference.”  -Terry and Renny Russell

By the time an Outdoor Adventure Leadership (ODAL) major at Sierra Nevada College reaches his/her senior year, each one has learned and mastered a variety of leadership skills and experienced amazing outdoor adventures.

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Corey Donohue guides a raft during an ODAL adventure.

Those adventures range from white-water rafting on the American River, to end-of-summer and mid-winter backpacking expeditions in Desolation Wilderness, to sea-kayaking in Tomales Bay, to rock climbing at Dinosaur Rock and an extended backpacking course in Utah’s Canyonlands.

Near the end of their Interdisciplinary Studies experience, all ODAL students are required to take Wilderness Ethics, ODAL’s capstone course. This semester, Rosie Hackett, ODAL program director, chose for her students, a “Have You Ever” prompt by Terry and Renny Russel from their book, “On the Loose.”

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