September 3, 2016 by Eric Hanson General, Uncategorized 0

A Plea for Wild Places

To the decision makers in the Navajo Nation Council, I understand you are considering the future of a portion of the Grand Canyon, one that would irrevocably change not only the physical landscape but the spirit of the canyon as well. I know that you will weigh your options, and choose the course that is in your people’s best interests. But I ask that you consider my voice, as well as the voice of many outsiders, who believe that the Escalade Project would be nothing short of a tragedy. Just last week, I was at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. Upon my return to the bustling world above the rim, I learned of the news that the Escalade Project has officially been proposed. My name is Eric Hanson. I am a photographer in Flagstaff, Arizona. And the Grand Canyon has played a significant role in shaping who I am. I wrote the following as a response to learning the news about the Escalade Project. A Plea for Wild Places For eight days, life was as beautiful as one could ask for. I fell asleep each night under the stars as the Milky Way passed overhead. Each morning I woke […]

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A Muddy Thanksgiving

When many people were at home with their families for Thanksgiving, watching football, eating turkey and stuffing and cranberry sauce and pie, I was camping amidst the red rocks of Utah. I was working for ten straight days in the wilderness. I was already disappointed to be working over Thanksgiving, but what made it worse was that a massive storm walloped us for three days. This was a doozy of a storm too. With air temperatures around 38 degrees, the wind was howling, blowing rain sideways and destroying our tarp shelters. Trying to staying dry, or warm for that matter, was futile. Not only were we cold and wet, but the loose red earth quickly turned into a muddy soup. Anywhere I stepped my boots sank deep into the mud. I was miserable.

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September 24, 2013 by Eric Hanson General 1

Reconciling Risk

How likely is it that I will survive this? Will I get injured? Stuck? Will I fall? Get caught in a flash flood? Get hypothermia? Is this worth the risk? As someone who works in the wilderness and spends a huge portion of my time engaging in outdoor activities, I am constantly calculating risks, weighing them against the rewards of an activity. It is the nature of being an outdoorsman. The wilderness is a domain outside of our control. What might be a pleasant stroll one day could be a life-threatening experience the next. The fact that the wilderness is outside our control is exactly why it is so alluring. The wilderness is wild.

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