Posts Tagged With: Sunset

Just Add Water

I’m not a huge fan of wine. The swirling, the sniffing, the swishing – they’re all unnecessary distractions that keep you from actually getting down to the business of drinking.

My girlfriend is half Italian. She studied abroad in Italy during college, has Italian citizenship and currently guides cycling trips through Italy’s wine country a few months out of every year. She knows wine. She knows how to pair wine. She digs it.

Paddleboarding Lake McDonald

Just add water

You see my problem, right?

Sunday night we hopped in my car and headed up to Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park for a little sunset paddle. I brought the paddleboards, she brought the dinner and drinks. And by drinks I mean wine.

Already craving a beer, I pushed out from shore, watching our paddles cutting cleanly through the water as we pointed our boards north and headed for the middle of the lake, the glassy surface perfectly reflecting the surrounding mountains and setting sun.

Paddleboarding

Lauran, her wine and her paddleboard

No people. No boats. We had the lake to ourselves as we sat down on our boards and busted out some salami, pesto and cheese sandwiches followed by a bottle of white wine. Before I knew it, the sandwiches and the bottle of wine were both gone. Not a crumb or drop to be seen. What the hell just happened?

You might assume that I cheated on my first love, beer, and now consider wine my main squeeze. You’d be mistaken. In all seriousness, I realized that all you have to do is add water. That night, sitting in the middle of Lake McDonald, surrounded by pure, mountain water, I lost track of everything else. There were no distractions. I wasn’t thinking about whether I like or dislike something, There were no other thoughts. I was simply enjoying the moment.

Water has that affect on me. Or maybe it was because we were drinking the wine out of the bottle?

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Solitary Sunset SUP

Where the hell is everybody?

It was Sunday in Glacier National Park on the shore of Lake McDonald. Canada Day was the next day. The Fourth of July “weekend” would be kicking off mid-week. The weather—too hot if you ask locals—felt perfect as the sun started its descend for the evening.

Lake McDonald SUP

SUP on Lake McDonald

Paddle board under my arm, I followed the trail through the trees to the shore. My first view of the lake stopped me in my tracks: 10 miles long and nearly a mile wide, Lake McDonald stretched in front of me with its glassy surface reflecting the setting sun and the surrounding mountains, begging me to jump in. … Not a soul to be seen.

My paddle cutting into the water was the only sound I could hear besides the low hum of cars on the road miles away. I headed north across the middle of the lake, my sights on the signature peaks that guard McDonald’s far end. Still, not a soul to be seen.

With no reason to rush and nowhere to be, I sat down on my board with my feet dangling in the clear, cool water and enjoyed the sun’s final rays as it dropped over the Apgar Mountains.

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Oregon Coast-ing

With our hoods up and hands stuffed deep in our pockets, we made tracks down the beach towards the tide pools. The sand was damp, spilling over the soles of my sandals, making me wish I’d worn shoes. The wind whipped at our backs. The driving rain soaked us from behind. Jeans were a bad idea.

Fifteen minutes later I stood on a rock, as far from shore as I could possibly get, looking out over the Pacific Ocean. The tide slowly came in around me, doing its best to cut me off from shore. The wind – gone. The driving rain – done. And that sun that was nowhere to be found 15 minutes earlier was now steadily drying me out.

This is the Pacific Northwest. More specifically, this is the Oregon Coast. Rain, wind and clouds. Sun, humidity and heat. If you’re not liking the weather, wait five minutes. Chances are a complete wardrobe change will be required.

I met my family in Lincoln City, Oregon this weekend for some much needed beach time. Here’s a look at a few of my favorite shots. If you’d rather ride the Instagram train, find my photos here.

Flying Montana

Portland bound over Montana

Kaden Lincoln City Oregon

My nephew Kaden exploring the beach

Sunset

Sunset

Beer in Lincoln City Oregon

10 Barrel Brewing Apocalypse IPA with a view

Sunset

Sunset

My nephew Kaden at sundown.

My nephew Kaden at sundown.

Sunset

Sunset

Lincoln City Oregon

Nature’s tunnel to the beach

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Sunsets

What is it about sunsets that are so fascinating and appealing?

Looking through my Instagram photos, a collection that features a variety of different subjects, there’s clearly favor shown to the shots of sunsets by those doing the viewing.

Is it based solely on the visual stimulation created by the complex combination of Mother Nature’s colors? The oranges, reds, yellows and blues making magic on the horizon.

Or is it something more emotional? The satisfaction, uncertainty and excitement that goes along with knowing that another day in this thing we call life has come to a close, with another about to start.

Sunset

Sunset. Columbia Falls, MT.

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