About Rick Mc

Career gymnastics coach who loves the outdoors, and the internet.

Washington Park, Portland OR

One of the best urban hiking areas in the USA.

Washington Park is the #1 TripAdvisor attraction in Portland.

It includes a zooforestry museumarboretumchildren’s museumrose gardenJapanese gardenamphitheatrememorialsarchery range, tennis courts, soccer field, picnic areas, playgrounds, public art and many acres of wild forest with miles of trails.

I walked from my hostel and then did about 10km of run / walk between some of the attractions.

The trails are excellent. No bikes allowed.

Early April blossoms are the highlight. There were plenty of cameras out.

The Oregon Holocaust Memorial was dedicated in 2004.

It’s very well maintained. Public picnic spaces superb.

Giant Sequoias.

Don’t miss this park if you get to Portland.

Getúlio Felipe climbs Marmolada

Getúlio Felipe is a 14-year old kid born with cerebral palsy. That didn’t stop him climbing the highest mountain in the Italian Dolomites 3,343 m (10,968 ft).

… At the age of four, he was advised to start using a wheelchair, which he refused. He told the world he was going to learn to walk.
Age 5, nothing. Age 6, nothing.

Age 7, Getulio took his first steps. This in itself was an achievement no one saw possible, but in his own words, “the impossible does not exist”.

His sheer determination has inspired people around the world, giving people hope when they had lost it. …

… climbing Marmolada involves crossing a glacier with huge crevasses and then a steep climb requiring ropes, crampons, and ice axes. Just to add to the difficulty, there was a deep snowpack …

The day a boy became a man and inspired the world

Accompanying Getúlio on this journey were Pedro McCardell, creator of Lyfx, an app that conects travelers to local guides, Alessio Nardellotto, an experienced climber from the Dolomites, Alberto Benchimol and Stefano Fabris, who worked as a separate support team for safety and image capture.

Four Pass Loop, Maroon Bells-Snowmass CO

The Four Pass Loop in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness is one of the premiere backpacking loops in Colorado.

At 28 miles in length, this loop is typically hiked over the course of 3 to 5 days depending on your fitness level. During the trek you hike over four high elevation mountain passes, reach a peak altitude of ~12,500 feet, and climb nearly 9,000 feet …

Highlights of the Four Pass Loop include epic views of the Maroon Bells and several nearby mountain peaks, expansive views from atop mountain passes, summer wildflower blooms, and views of alpine lakes and idyllic rivers. …

FOUR PASS LOOP – MAROON BELLS SNOWMASS WILDERNESS, CO (28 MILE LOOP)

Bear canister required.

tramping Stewart Island, New Zealand

There are three main multi-day hiking trails on Stewart Island:

Rakiura Track (3 days)
North West Circuit (9-11 days)
Southern Circuit (6 days)

Stewart Island can be visited all year round, and it possible to do the aforementioned hikes at any time of the year. But, our recommendation is to visit sometime during the peak summer months, when the weather is warmer, sunny days are (slightly) more likely, and the daylight hours are longer.

We suggest visiting December through March. …

Ultimate Gear Lists – STEWART ISLAND HIKING GUIDE

The weather is notorious. But your biggest problem is not likely to be mud … it will be sandflies.

cycling Vegas to Red Rock Canyon

Trip report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles.

My favourite destination in Vegas is Red Rock Canyon.

It was Alistair Humphreys who first got me thinking about microadventures.

… short, simple, local, cheap – yet still fun, exciting, challenging, refreshing and rewarding. …

Visiting friends in west Vegas it was only about 10 miles to the Red Rock Canyon Visitor Center on excellent dedicated cycling lanes.

I cycled from their house short of the Conservation Area, turning one street early into the Calico Basin (no fees).

You can access similar gorgeous wilderness while avoiding crowds, parking hassles and entrance fee.

For the first time ever I cycled out onto the Kraft Mountain trails.

It was busy with locals climbing the Kraft Boulders.

Aside from April wildflowers, it was typical Nevada desert.

I did see one large desert tortoise, Nevada’s State Reptile.

At dusk I set up my tent in a quiet, hidden spot.

Next morning starting at 5am I began hearing voices.

As it turned out I’d accidentally set-up close to an unmarked but popular local trail.

Oops.

Charles Darwin was a hiker

He got into hiking in his 20s, but it was trekking and scrambling in little know wilderness on four continents visited on his five-year-long H.M.S. Beagle voyage between 1831 and 1836 that cement him as one of the most worldly hikers in history.

 “Mount Darwin” is the highest peak in Tierra del Fuego. On February 12, 1834, Captain FitzRoy named a mountain after him on his birthday. …

Mt. Darwin

Darwin walked mainly to discover plants and animals unique to those regions.

I learned all this by reading his travelogue Voyage of the Beagle.

By the way, the famous phrase “survival of the fittest” comes from Herbert Spencer’s 1864 publication, “Principles of Biology.” The term is largely thought to have been coined by Darwin regarding his thoughts on evolution; however, this is a wrong assumption.