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I know the trail starts somewhere…

…I’m just not 100% sure where it is.

And that I think is the great takeaway here.  You may have a plan on what to do next.  In school.  In travel.  Hell maybe even in life.  These trails that we take however are never as simple as we’d like to think.  Things come up.  Plans change.  Little spur trails pop up on the side as options for you to take.

Embrace the spur trail.

I have a phrase that I like to utter to myself when things mysteriously come together.  Serendipity strikes again.  By placing yourself in the world, showing it your truths, and allowing yourself to be present; you give yourself the opportunity to take part in things you could have only dreamed of.  That’s how I saw Weird Al perform for $5 at a food festival.  That’s how I found myself at Yale University, being lead by a pretty girl back to her dorm room.  That’s how I got myself to two degrees of separation from Leonardo DiCaprio; by meeting a world famous National Geographic photographer who had partied with him on a yacht.  The craziest thing about this?  It all happened on one trip.

This is the idea behind The Spur Trail.  I truly believe that humanity has evolved to require some amount of adventure in our lives.  This blog is dedicated to adventure in all of it’s forms.  Your far off destination is another person’s home, and vice versa.  What changes is the lens through which we perceive our current actions.  Here on these pages you will find stories from distant lands.  You will find tales within a hundred miles of my home.  You will find a platform of posts that can both inform, and inspire ways you can live a life rich in experience, rich in relationships, and rich in truth.  You will find that sometimes when you let yourself get a little lost that maybe, just maybe…you actually find yourself.

By this point you might be wondering, “What is this spur trail thing he keeps blabbing about?”

I’m terrible at telling stories shortly but I’ll try to sum it up for you.  In 2017 I made it a goal to see if I was any good/had any interest in ever doing a long distance thru-hike.  Deciding to start small instead of failing large, I picked the Superior Hiking Trail of northern Minnesota.  Being only 300 miles instead of 2,000+ like the big boys, I figured it’d be a good taste of what walking for days really felt like.  On this trail you often see signs for little things called ‘spur trail’s.  These little guys, for lack of a better verb, “spur-off” to overlooks, towns, sights of interest, fresh/unmarked graves…AH I hope not!  They take you places, adding spice & intrigue to your already epic trip.  Fast forward a year and I was playing charades, trying to describe the word spur.  Nobody understood my description with the trail but they got it as soon as I mentioned cowboy boots.  However, and this is where SERENDIPITY STRIKES AGAIN, my sister-in-law remembered my first description.  Days later when I came begging to my family for help naming this blog, (nearly impossible to come up with unique names that make sense and aren’t taken in 2018) she mentioned The Spur Trail.  And here we are.

If I had to use terms that are specific and easy to understand, I would describe The Spur Trail as this.  It is ultimately a travel blog.  Within that realm you’ll find posts that feel technical, How-To’s, Review’s, and Wish-I-Knew’s (I love rhyming).  Additionally, I am extremely passionate about photography and there will be content that may simply be photo-based.  After that, and these are not in order of importance, you will find stories that really have no hard goal other than to reach out and be your best friend for your own adventures.

Where Do I Go From Here?

Well you know what the blog is about, come check out my About page and see who I am.  Just a regular guy with big dreams and possibly never grew up.  But I’ll explain all of that over there.

  • “Remember why you started.” -  Unknown

I had a meeting today.  With a woman to discuss images I had sent in for a Fellowship competition.  Some of the images were three years old at this point.

The feedback was great and what was pointed out to me as it has again and again is, “What are you trying to say?” As time goes by, so does my understanding of why I’m doing something.  Years after I tried to start that project I’m not sure I remember why I started.  Did I have a clear and honest intention?

My list of goals for 2019 has not materialized, but I believe one thing I want to work on is clarity of intention and purpose.  What am I doing and why.  What effect do I hope to have.  Thus far has felt like a lot of doing just to do.  May I ask, how do you decide what it is you want to do?
#intention #goals #newyear #lookinsideyourself #whatisyourgoal #motivation
  • “The biggest hint I have to offer the beginner is that he be not a slave to convention; that he build not as his father built; that he think for himself, and that he accept truth wherever he finds it, and not because it is garbed in fine linen and goes prancing around in an automobile or a church pulpit, a university-chair, or an editor’s sanctum.” -  Jack London

Until this last week, I realized I had not been to the Minnesota state capital since my 6th grade class went.  What an interesting thing I thought, as I caught the last ten minutes they were open and wandered through catacombish halls I likely needn’t be in.

It seems quite serendipitous I should randomly come across it again, days before tomorrow’s elections.  Also reading Jack London recently I think there is something to be found in the combining of these occurrences.

I can’t advise you in anything political, as I myself have yet to decide.  But I do agree, we need to think for ourselves and find our own truths tomorrow.  What do you think?

#onlyinmn #getoutandvote #politicsarecrazy #dayofwandering #findyourspurtrail #nikond750 #walkabout #everydayadventure #stpaul #stpaultourism #visitstpaul
  • “Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.” -  Mark Twain

Mark obviously didn’t know about good dogs, or he would have included them.  So glad that these good friends let me take my first fall session with them and their pups.  Thanks guys!
@bllerum @brookelerum .
#pupsandstuff #familyphoto #fallsession #lookatthoseleaves #onlyinmn #october #nikond850 #nottoocoldforus #onlyalittlesnow #dreamteam
  • “Doing it your own way, not having to go exactly by the book to be successful.” – Ice Cube⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Wise grasshopper.  Very wise. :)⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
#thespurtrail #onlyinmn #thisismymn #thisismyminnesota #capturemn #minnesotaexposure #minnstagrammers #minnesotaphotographer #exploremn #wisegrasshopper #dewdrops #macro #countryliving ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
  • “You realize that our mistrust of the future makes it hard to give up the past.” -  Chuck Palahniuk

This is so true.  I had a meeting with a man today.  A man that for no obvious reason wants to help me pursue a dream I’ve had.

I’ve had a lot of ideas.  Like this trip to Iceland from two years ago.  I thought I’d find a way to make all of these trips pay for themselves, creating works that would sell or using new knowledge to speak in schools or lead your groups.

In this meeting I realized there would be much to buy, and little to guarantee success.  There is a level of mistrust in myself and my ideas.  Though the dreams of their successes are more like nightmares in that I can’t help but believe there is a way to make it work.

Do I give up some of the things I’ve looked to in the past, and commit to a potentially fruitless future?

I think I should.

#trusttheprocess #iceland #longexposure #believeinyourself #dreambig #findyourspurtrail #liveloveadventure
  • I've not felt very motivated to post on IG lately.  What I've felt is that it's quite overwhelming to try and keep up.  That, a lack of adventure, and a focus on financial stability has turned attentions away from some of the more desirous, creative pursuits.  That does not though signal the end of endless dreaming and lofty goals.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
As the grasshoppers disappear when seasons change, so do the roles we play.  Now that wedding season slows down because starting lives together in the snow is less desirable than green grass...the chance for adventure may again emerges.

thespurtrail @ Instagram