Well over a million people have read about ASC in the past month, since Men’s Journal included our founder Gregg Treinish on its inaugural “50 Most Adventurous Men” list. The honor seats Treinish alongside a slew of the world’s movers and shakers including conservationist M. Sanjayan, free solo climber Alex Honnold and big mountain snowboarder Travis Rice.
Calling him “an adventurer melding environmental activism with exploration, the article portrays Treinish as someone exploring new terrain—not only in the wilds of Africa and Mongolia, but forging new ground in conservation.
Watch a video of ASC Executive Director Gregg Treinish in a Men's Journal roundtable alongside free solo climber Alex Honnold, ski base jumper Mattias Giraud,
and expedition climber Mike Libecki:
The ASC Spring Giveaway is now live! Enter to win an amazing bundle of gear and goodies! Click here to throw your name in the hat:
The package includes Clif Bars, a Steripen Classic 3 water purifier, a pair of Sunski sunglasses of your choice, and either an Osprey Men's Osprey Talon 18 backpack, or a or women's Tempest 16. Giveaway open through June 10.
Story and Paintings by Emilie Lee
ASC Partner Artist
It’s 5 a.m., and I’m crammed in the back of a car with six strangers, rattling down a dirt road as we race to beat the sunrise. Sleep has overtaken me by the time we reach our destination, but I snap out of it when we step into the chilly air. The night sky is lifting, and a pale light illuminates the endless expanse of rolling grasslands that greet me.
It’s my first morning on the American Prairie Reserve, and I feel disoriented, but Elaine and Tim—the pair of Landmark wildlife researchers I’m following—consult their GPS and strike out with confidence, striding through the prickly sage brush and cactus. I hustle to keep up, as we have three miles to go, and we can’t be late for the big performance. As we hike, I notice patterns in the grass, a twisting rhythm that brings to mind flowing water. Further on, I see the abstract beauty of a singular cloud taking shape in the morning light and try to sear the vision in my memory.
I am an artist, not a scientist, and I’m observing my surroundings in terms of color, line and form. I’m aware that my scientist companions have a different perspective, so I wrack my brain for questions. What is this plant? What bird makes that call? Why is the land shaped like this? Why are there cactus growing here?
I’m hungry for information on my first prairie hike, and my hope is that this time spent shadowing the ASC Landmark crew will give me new insight into the land I will be painting.
Suddenly I become painfully aware of the unstoppable march of time as the sun, a molten red orb, rises with surprising speed from behind the perfectly flat horizon. We pause for a few seconds to witness this singular moment that marks the day’s birth and then hurry onward.
Tim checks the GPS with more frequency, warning that we should be there soon. The anticipation is thrilling. We move cautiously, listening and checking through our binoculars, until we hear the sounds of corks popping—the party is not far away. That sound, I’m told, is the mating call of the greater sage grouse.
Story and Photos by Joe Klementovich
ASC Microplastics Adventurer
I like to think the little things we do can add up to bigger changes, no matter how massive the challenge. So over the past few months, I’ve been chomping at the bit to get involved with and sample for ASC's Microplastics project. A photography assignment came up that involved several days in Florida Bay and the Keys, fly fishing and camping in and around the Everglades—a perfect location to start sampling. A quick look at the project map showed that there were little or no samples from the areas we were planning to go to, so with a quick email to ASC Partnerships Coordinator Alex I was signed up.
Photos and Captions by Elaine Kennedy
The American Prairie Reserve is composed of vast expanses of native prairie, and teeming with beautiful and unique wildlife. Being part of the ASC Landmark crew was a great way to experience the Great Plains ecosystem while contributing to an ambitious research and conservation project. Through photography, I hope to share some of the interesting species we’ve seen on the prairie, and encourage the public to appreciate and value wildlife and the environment.
By Alex Hamilton
Last Saturday, I climbed into a truck bound for Utah alongside ASC Program Manager Mike Quist Kautz, two mountain bikes, a motorcycle, three pairs of skis and a pile of maps. Our goal was to scout trailheads and camera trap sites for ASC’s Uinta Carnivore Study.
As with many good adventures, we had a mountain of gear and only the vaguest sense of what conditions would be like.
The High Uinta Wilderness is out there, and that’s part of its magic: The crest danced on the horizon like a mirage, always visible, always distant. After a mid-April snowstorm, driving access was limited to roads plowed for logging.
On the first morning, we wound through rain, snow and fog towards the Henry’s Fork trailhead, popping through to alpine sunshine around 9,000 feet, stymied by snowy roads at 9,200. We strapped on our fat backcountry skis and glided for 13 miles through breakable crust, slush and mud, rolling up the drainage. As expected, the lynx and wolverines didn’t come out to congratulate us on our effort. The moose and coyotes made appearances but gave up no clues.
“Try again later,” they shrugged. “Thanks for breaking trail."
To our surprise, we managed to use every piece of equipment we brought. In the Bear River Range near Logan, we mountain biked until we hit snow, then hiked and post-holed until we gained the ridge. While eating the last of our trail mix, we realized it was Earth Day. We’d been inadvertently celebrating all day.
ASC volunteers looking for adventure will find it on the way to their camera sites. Probably not the “wow-this-is-fun-what-perfect-conditions” type of adventure—although there will likely be some of that, too. Instead, they’ll find type-two fun. That’s what we encountered: Scrambles through downed trees, mud, creek crossings and fading trails. Our grinning hikes were interspersed with moments of deep longing to be back at the trailhead, only to arrive and think, “Hey, that was a good time!”
We’re excited for this summer.
Read the Landmark Notes blog: