October 1, 2021

Costa Mesa, Ca.

Greetings Family & Friends:

I hope you had a great Summer and your Fall has started with great promise for the future.

My last post was in May of this year. The time seems right for an update.

My last big adventure was a through-paddle of the Mississippi River in late 2019 from its source in Lake Itasca, Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico. I had great plans for 2020. Then, Covid-19 struck and those plans were dashed. As conditions improved, I scheduled two trips in 2021: a through-paddle of the Missouri River in the Spring of 2021 and a pilgrimage walk on the Camino de Santiago in the Fall of 2021. Those plans were also interrupted when Sharon encountered some health issues requiring surgery in June of 2021. She faces another surgery in the late Fall of this year. Your prayers will be appreciated.

Here is a list of adventures I am considering, not necessarily in order of time or priority:

Retrace the Lewis & Clark expedition in reverse by solo canoeing the Missouri River from its source in Three Forks, Montana to its convergence with the Mississippi River near St. Louis. The distance is 2,321 miles. Once I reach the Big Muddy, I’ll ride on her back (for the second time) to the Gulf of Mexico.

Walk the Camino de Santiago on the Camino Frances route https://caminoways.com/camino-de-santiago. The Camino Frances starts in France and proceeds across northern Spain to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, which is said to contain the remains of the Apostle Saint James the Great. I will then walk from Santiago to the Atlantic Coast, first to Finisterre and then Muxia. The total distance of this pilgrimage is over 600 miles.

Ride the rugged TransAmerica Trail, cross country, on an off-road motorcycle.https://www.transamtrail.com

Take Ollie on a road trip in a motorhome to visit national parks in the Western United States and visit special needs families along the way. Film the trip and produce a documentary to bring awareness of the challenges faced by special needs children and their families.

Participate in the Great Pacific Ocean Rowing Race from San Francisco to Hawaii-2,400 nautical miles. https://greatpacificrace.com

Serve as a deckhand on a Mississippi River tow boat.

Join the Highpointers Club by climbing the highest mountain in every state. https://highpointers.org. I have already summitted the most difficult peaks on the list: Denali in Alaska, Mt. Rainier in Washington, Mt. Whitney in California (19 times) and Gannett Peak in Wyoming.

Climb Mt. Everest after my 80th birthday (I turn 80 in March of 2022).

Jen Murphy writes two wonderful columns for the Wall Street Journal. They are titled “What’s Your Workout?” and “Anatomy of a Workout.” Here is her What’s Your Workout? column (featuring yours truly) published on September 28, 2021. I am especially pleased that Ollie’s photo made it into the Wall Street Journal.

God is good.