The Art of Exploration · a diary of day trips, natural places, and miscellaneous adventures

About This Here Blog

Last updated Friday, September 8th, 2017
Hiking in red dirt, somewhere in Arches National Park.

Hi, I’m Laura and this is my blog, The Art of Exploration. The Art of Exploration is a virtual scrapbook, a photo journal, and a trip diary all wrapped into one. It’s where I stash my (occasional) artwork, travel writings, and miscellaneous thoughts about being outside, seeking new sights, and exploring new landscapes.

But The Art of Exploration isn’t just about finding new places to explore. It’s also about revisiting favorite spots and retracing well-worn paths time and again to see familiar places in fresh light.

Taking pictures, somewhere in Zion National Park.

Exploration for me isn’t an endeavor confined to foreign locations—it thrives in the most ordinary of places too. Exploration is about the way you look at a place, the things you notice and the timing of your visit. Nature is always changing our surroundings—weather, seasons, growth, and decline all affect the composition of natural communities and human landscapes alike. And just as places change, we change—our response to our surroundings is rarely the same twice.

Catching my breath, somewhere near the top of Flattop Mountain, Rocky Mountain National Park.

For me, art is a natural extension of exploration. The creation of art offers us a way of capturing those special moments when we encounter something that moves us. Art allows us, in our own unique way, to convey the great value of exploration.

Keeping this blog helps to remind me that every time we step outside, we have the opportunity to explore. All we have to do is open our eyes to something new, something different and allow ourselves to be surprised by how much there is to discover.

Biking to Old School Forest Preserve, somewhere in Illinois.

Assortment

Lower Yosemite Fall Trail
There are so many things to do and so many sights to see in Yosemite, I found it a challenge to know where to start. We flipped through our guide books and studied our maps and decided that the Lower Yosemite Fall Trail seemed like a good opener.
Mesa Trail
Today is the second day in a row of cool mist, light showers, and autumnal temperatures. I venture out mid-morning hoping to log a quick local hike before the trails turn too slop. I begin my hike at NCAR and trek northward along the Mesa Trail—two miles out, two miles back.
Moments
Another week is underway and again I find myself knee-deep in duties and deadlines without having been able to fully enjoy a weekend to myself.