It started with a text message from Robert Garlow at 10:25am Friday, July 22. Bob notified me that they had rented a fire lookout near Detroit Lake for three nights but that unfortunately, they were not going to be able to make it for Friday night. He suggested that we should use it in their place. Nothing like a last minute unplanned trip to jack your morning into high gear.

I began packing even before notifying my wife April of the developing [potential] plans. I also jumped online to research the lookout. Gold Butte Lookout (4,618’) was actually used as part of an aircraft warning...


A windswept place in the middle of nowhere lies a far away hidden gem. The dried lake bed of Oregon's Alvord Desert is one of the most remote areas in the country and is now one of my favorite places.

*click images to enlarge


Located in Marion county, Butte Creek and Abiqua Falls are both accessible as a day trip, though Abiqua takes a determined adventurer to find it. A quick search will provide you with enough information to get started on the right track. Butte Creek Falls both Upper and Lower are both accessible via a nice pull out with a restroom. A short and relatively easy hike provides excellent views of each falls. Upper Falls has a massive cave behind it that is definitely worth exploring. Watch your step at Lower Falls as it provides some fun exposure while you tread down closer to the water. Be...


The amount of wildlife in Kenya is staggering. Living and volunteering in the bush for nearly 2 months certainly gives you a new and humble perspective on the vastness and diversity of this Earth. Listening to the animals at night is enough to make your blood curdle as predatory beasts noisily eat their pray. Though living amongst the animals, any trip to Kenya is not complete without a true Safari experience with an seasoned guide who knows all the secret spots to view the wildlife. Our guide was able to maximise the animal viewing as well as guarantee a remote and solitary experience by...


Bolan Mountain is quite a unique little spot. The small fire lookout is enclosed by glass windows on all sides providing stunning views of the Siskiyou Mountains in Southern Oregon. This is the place to go if you want to relax for an uninterrupted weekend of stunning mountain scenery, good food, good drink, and chilling with close friends and/or family. The road leading up to the lookout is not for every vehicle and requires a little imaginative driving, AWD or 4WD with high clearance is highly recommended. However the lookout is completely worth the scraped fenders and dented side panels...


Mt. Hood is a special place for most people that I know, especially those of us who grew up staring at it everyday. The real lucky few are those who have made a carrier working with, on, or around her. Such as my good friend Dave Baker. As a patroller during the winter and working with the forest service during the summer he gets to explore some amazing little zones that few will ever see but we all dream about. This secret spot was one of the little gems that he's found that will shine in our memories for a long time. Dave single handedly cleared the trail of a season's worth of fallen...


I once found myself with two buds driving down the Oregon and North California coasts in search of waves and trying to stay lost on the Lost Coast.


With 9,000 acres, Silver Falls is Oregon's largest state park and is a showcase of Northwest grandeur with 10 major waterfalls nestled into a temperate rainforest highlighting Douglas Fir and Western Hemlock. Meadows, creeks and a diverse array of native plants and wildlife make this park not only unique but one that's worth spending some time in. For a bit more fun there are countless waterfalls in this area that are accessible via Mehema and Mill City on Hwy 22. Ask in town at the bar or coffee shop and see what you come up with. / Nikon D3200


This year in early March I had the opportunity to visit Mexico to check out the Tulum ruins as well as dive in the many freshwater sinkholes called cenotes. Not only were the ruins breathtaking but so were the cenotes and their life giving crystal clear water. The Mayan words "Ts'onot" or "Xenote" generally mean "well" or "waterwell" and refer to any source of fresh groundwater. Hundreds of feet deep, most cenotes are unexplored in their entirety and it is believed that most (if not all) are connected, making the area near Tulum possibly the largest freshwater underground river system on...


Oregon's wave-lashed coastline is fully exposed to north-west swells coming down from the Gulf of Alaska and the prolific North Pacific and possesses a good mixture of high quality reefs, beaches and points, with some being very tide dependent. The main Pacific City beach break gets more crowded each year. It’s a State Park and parking is limited, typically filling by 10am on spring weekends and earlier in peak summer season. There's only a few but Cape Kiwanda is certainly a gathering place for the Northwest tribe. Just watch out for the dory boats as they're coming back with their...


But I thought Burning Man was in Nevada?

My wife and I decided that a trip to Africa was in order. Neither of us had been to the African continent and we had contacts in Kenya and South Africa so we thought "what the hell" let's just go for it. After telling work we'd be gone for 3 months we started planning. After a 5 day layover in Istanbul, a month and a half in Kenya and a month in Johannesburg South Africa we rented a car and drove to Cape Town. Being veteran burners and having personally attended over 14 burner events we certainly knew of AfrikaBurn and even managed to score...


Made a stop in what was once Constantinople for a few days just to check it out. With over 2500 years of history, Istanbul is an intensely interesting and a very alive modern city. Couchsurfing and hostels were a great way to meet people and get ideas for seeing the city. While having dinner and tea one evening in Taksim Square riots broke out in the city. Soon there were riot police sweeping through the streets. A young boy who had been in a coma (the result of being struck in the head by a police tear gas canister months before...while protesting the police) had just died in the...


Spent a month in Nepal trekking through the Everest region. Climbed Imja Tse (20,305') and spend time in Kathmandu.



Those of us who were fortunate enough to have grown up in the Pacific Northwest know something profound, we know that this place has molded us into who we are and it has influenced how we move through this world, encouraging us to explore and travel. Maybe I'm jaded, but this thing we call life is far too interesting to go unexplored. As a result, I've spent my entire life venturing outdoors into the wilderness. Whether climbing, surfing or the alpine, and a hearty lust for travel, they have taken me all over the world. So recently I left my job to explore a new unknown, to pursue a creative path for myself, to seek out new realities as well as the many characters along the way. I take images with both film and digital cameras. These are some of my stories and images, I sincerely hope you enjoy.

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© 2015 Brian Jensen