Paddling In Santa Barbara.

Spring In The States

Driving into Santa Barbara always feels like coming home, even though I haven’t lived there full-time since 2015. There’s definitely something about the sun, sand, ocean, and mountains that I love, plus I still have great friends in town. I posted up in front of my client’s office and settled in for a few months of working, running, and SoCal beach time.

Camping in Santa Barbara.
Santa Barbara Home

I worked most days from my client’s office, headed downtown to hit the gym, run along the beach, or inflate the SUP and paddle around the harbor. I also met up with a lot of friends and spent time down on State Street. Santa Barbara really is one of my favorite places in the entire world.

Santa Barbara Stand Up Paddle Board.
Santa Barbara SUP

Part of the allure of settling into Santa Barbara was that I had several work gigs scheduled and flying out of SBA for the Spartan Trail races was ideal. I took off to Jacksonville and then Atlanta to work with my good friend Aimee, and we even bought matching Spartan Trail shoes to show the rest of the crew how cool we really are.

Spartan Trail Race Directors.
Spartan Trail Race Directors

Back in SoCal I was hired for the second time to work as a photographer with my friends Luis and Fraser at a private rodeo event. This cowboy campout features roping and riding, shooting and fishing, and all around good stories as a group of guys congregate on a ranch on the Central Coast. I put my flannel shirts and cowboy hat to good use working on the ranch.

Chris at the Vaqueros Ride.
Vaquero Chris

I survived another Vaqueros event, but ranch time wasn’t over. Not long after returning to town for showers and laundry I was joining Luis and Fraser back on another Central Coast cattle ranch to set up for the Born To Run Ultramarathons. Since 2013 I’ve been attending the event, helping mark and manage the course, race day activities, and all sorts of shenanigans, and this year did not disappoint.

Born To Run Camp.
Terk The Truck Camper At Born To Run

After two rowdy ranch events I was very much ready for some alone time on the road. I took off east and revisited one of my favorite desert towns St. George, Utah. I worked from coffee shops, showered at the community center, devoured arroz con pollo at Viva Chicken, and found a free camp outside of town to take in the sunsets over the desert.

St. George Campsite

Still on a bit of a schedule, I made my way back to Golden, Colorado to hang out with my brother and use the Denver airport for a few more Spartan gigs. I flew off to Montana to work as the Spartan Trail Race Director for the weekend and then down to Austin, Texas to set up the course and work as support.

Spartan Montana.
Spartan Trail Montana

Back in Golden I was counting down the days to my next international trip. I’d be parking Terk the Truck Camper in storage in Indiana and Tyler decided to hitch up his camper and join me on the trip home. We stopped at McConaughy Lake in Nebraska, a place I’d camped at a few years ago, and set out to find the perfect spot on the beach. Unfortunately, not long onto the sand Tyler’s camper bogged down and no amount of winching or pulling from my truck would help. We ended up calling for a beach tow and a hundred dollars later we were safely camped on the top of a bluff, a nice place to watch the sunset over the lake.

Tyler's rig stuck in the sand.
Stuck In The Sand At McConaughy Lake

Driving from Nebraska to Indiana I was looking at Google Maps for a place to eat when I stumbled upon Hannibal, Missouri. As the boyhood home of Mark Twain, aka, Samuel Clemens, it made complete sense for the Clemens brothers to stop and explore the place. We walked around town, visited the museum, toasted some good craft beers, and throughly enjoyed what may or may not be our family heritage.

Clemens Brothers at Mark Twain's Home.
Clemens Brothers Visiting Samual Clemens’ Boyhood Home

A straight shot across Illinois brought us back to Indiana. It’d been awhile since both of us had been home at the same time and I think Mom and Tom enjoyed having both campers parked on the farm. It was a quick visit for me, but I enjoyed having the nephews over and competing in a couple rounds of clay bird plunking. As they get older the competition gets a bit harder, but for now I think the long haired hippies still have a bit of and edge.

Shooting clay birds at home.
Shootin’ Clay Birds

A few days later I packed my duffel bag, closed up the camper, and parked it in my family’s barn in Berne. I needed to be in Munich in October for a trade show and figured I should head over a bit early. 5 months early to be exact. I caught a ride down to the airport with my passport, ready for a summer adventure exploring new places abroad!

Terk the Truck Camper in Storage.
Terk The Truck Camper In Storage

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