What to Expect at the Alta Lodge

Alta Lodge Winter

I’m always on the prowl for hangouts with local flavor. Even though Steve and I ski at Alta most of the winter, I had yet to visit a single business other than the on mountain cafes. Finally a few folks got wise to my single-minded visits (powder skiing) and invited me to spend the night. […]






Finding strength on Lone Peak

View of Lone Peak From the Ridge - TheActiveExplorer.com

Success is achieved by developing our strengths, not by eliminating our weaknesses. – Marilyn vos Savant Utah’s Lone Peak tops at out 11,263’ and is considered the most difficult 11,000+ peak in the Wasatch Rage due to the mileage and vertical gain. It is an imposing peak, visible from Salt Lake City to Provo. With […]






Hiking Utah’s Mount Olympus (and telling Asthma to stick it)

Summit of Mount Olympus

You’ll never find a better sparring partner than adversity. ~Walt Schmidt Step pause, step pause, each one just little higher than the last. The trail seemed to have no end of “up” and I was struggling. About that time, and hiker training for a rim-to-rim-to-rim run of the Grand Canyon lapped me for the second […]






Red Butte Gardens Loop: A trail and patient friend

Red Butte Gardens Loop Trail 1

I’ve written briefly about this hike in my post, Five great early winter hikes in Salt Lake City, but I didn’t discuss it in depth. I didn’t share how this simple, beautiful, trail has helped me feel and process my emotions. It’s odd to think of a trail as a friend, but I do. I’ve […]






Five great early winter hikes in Salt Lake City

Mount Van Cott View

We’ve already had a good amount of snowfall on the Wasatch Mountains covering some of the higher trails that I haunted throughout the hot summer months. I’m not giving up hiking just yet however. Now is a perfect time to hike some of my favorite trails along the “Front Range” of the Wasatch. These are […]






Playtime at Snowbird Ski Resort: Oktoberfest and epic views

Active Explorer on top of Hidden Peak

Seriously overworked with a case of sleep deprivation, I drove up Little Cottonwood Canyon for a needed break at Snowbird Ski Resort. My plan…meet with fellow blogger Joshua Riggins for an afternoon of Oktoberfest fun, connect with the Ski Utah crew for dinner on Hidden Peak, enjoy drinks at Aerie, and spend the night in […]






Finding a clear view: Butler Fork to Mount Raymond

Mount Raymond Utah View

It is not the eye that understands, but the mind. ~ African proverb A rocky knife-edge rose up ahead of me like the spine of a large monster. Okay, I’m being a little dramatic because I really don’t like heights. I stood there alone, wondering if this really was the trail to Mount Raymond. “Seriously, […]






Wildflowers overtake Alta Ski Area – photos document colorful invasion

Sign and wildflowers at Alta Ski Area

An invasion of plant life dressed in bright uniforms of red, purple, yellow, pink and white took over the Alta Ski Area this summer. A contingent of hummingbirds and bumblebees provided additional support to the assault… Okay, I’ll stop with the silliness. “Stunning, vibrant, and off the rails,” are a few of the terms I’ve […]






Solo expression: Challenge Buttress

Winky and Waxman go bolting

Rarely do we get to express ourselves as purely as we’d like to but when it does happen, it’s truly a thing of beauty! Recently, many things have been put into an intricate perspective for me and I am continually learning how grow with them. It seems all too often we get trapped in a […]






Photo escape: Solo climb swing

Brandon Aegerter solo climbing

The outdoors has long been my place of solace, the place where I go to work through emotions or simply revel in gratitude. Typically, I need to be solo to reap those benefits. The Active Explorer’s new climbing contributor, Brandon Aegerter, has also expressed a need for solo time in his post Climbing: From personal […]