Grand Canyon Adventure at St. Louis Science Center

I took two of my kids and my nephew to see Grand Canyon Adventure: River at Risk at the St. Louis Science Center Omnimax Theater this weekend. There are some places in this world that are just made to be featured on a wrap-around screen like that if you can’t be there in person, and the Grand Canyon is one of those places.

I have been smitten with the Grand since I got my first awe-inspiring look at it years ago. Four years out of college, I made the decision to get out of my chosen profession of sports journalism. I planned a two-week trip spanning the continental U.S. and drove my trusty little beater Chevy truck for almost 4100 miles across swampland, plains, mountains and desert. And this was how I came to be driving up the road from Flagstaff completely unprepared for a hike in the high desert. Working for an outdoor retail company now, I realize just how lucky I was not to suffer a serious case of dehydration. But at the time, I was just exploring and my mind was not on water in my camera case. It was on the thin sliver of river running a mile below through the canyon.

And I’m not sure my mind has ever left that river.

Many of us have a “life list” or as the recent movie featured, a “bucket list.” Well, paddling the Colorado River through the entire Grand Canyon has been on my list from that day. And I can say this after the movie this weekend: I think I may be closer to getting my family on the river than I have ever been in my life. The first words out of the kids’ mouths to my wife and me after the movie were: “Can we go?”

Oh yes we can.

Now I’ll be the first to concede that this might not be happening for a few years, but I can’t help but get excited about this now. Thanks to this movie my family is getting excited about an adventure again. My kids are the ones pushing for an adventure now. I guess that means we have been successful in instilling a sense of wonder and a sense of exhilaration at being in some of the world’s most gorgeous locales.

I can just picture it now: my family’s faces as we hit a massive wave in the middle of Lava. I can’t wait.

What’s on your life list?

Great Canoe & Kayak Event Moved to March

In the best interests of the company, Alpine Shop made the decision to move the 9th Annual Great Canoe & Kayak Event from February 7-8 at the Kirkwood Community Center to March 27-29 on site at Alpine Shop Kirkwood.

We hate to mess with these schedules as much as anybody; but in this economic climate, it doesn’t make much sense for us to concentrate on paddling during the first week of February. There’s still too much skiing and boarding to do. So we’ve pushed the paddle event to the last weekend of March. For all of you that have offered to host clinics and trip reports, we hope you can make it back with us then. If you can’t, we surely understand why not.

For our customers, we hope we haven’t inconvenienced you too much. And we promise we won’t be moving the dates – or the location – on this event for the next few years.