2015 Armchair Adventures Series

2015 Armchair Adventures Series

There’s no better way to spend a cold, wintery evening than joining Jackson Hole locals as they recount their travels and adventures around the world. Presentations will take place in the meeting room at the recreation center. Refreshments will be provided.


Thursday evenings from 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm |  Fee: $5 per presentation

January 15th | Backcountry Scenery & Trekking in China | Presented by Mike Adler

Join Mike Adler for a presentation highlighting a three week visit to China in 2010. It was an unconventional trip, ignoring the big cities, instead focusing on wild China and the countryside. The trip included visits to the Great Wall located near Beijing and the Terracota Warriors in Zian prior to a three day tea house trek through the Tiger Leaping Gorge along the Yangtse River. The trip included a river trip on the Li River with its spectacular karst towers, hiking Moon Hill in Yangshou, hiking the artistic rice paddies of Longsheng and hiking Huangshan (yellow) Mountain along the cantilevered hiking trails on the sides of 2,000’ vertical granite walls. The trip concluded with visits to Hongcun village (filming site of the movie “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”), Hangzhou and Suzhou with their beautiful scenery and gardens.

January 22nd | Out of Bounds Skiing in Gulmarg, Kashmir | Presented by Nancy Leon

Ever dream of skiing in the world’s highest mountains, the Himalayas? Nancy Leon had dreamed of skiing in Gulmarg, Kashmir for years and combined her love of skiing with the exotic, colorful culture, cuisine, and history of Kashmir. She joined Aussie ski friends, and Australian and New Zealand mountain/ski guides, for two weeks of adventure in February, 2014 on the contested “Line of Control” border of India and Pakistan. Join Nancy for photos and stories of alpine touring skiing with a 5,000 vertical lift assist and down 7,000 feet into snowbound villages for chai and cookies. The trip concluded with a stay on the Raj era houseboats on Lake Dal in Srinagar.

January 29th | Off Road Odyssey: A Family Adventure into the Wilds of Botswana | Presented by Chip Marvin

In the spring of 2013, local couple Courtney and Chip Marvin, with their two young children, arrived in Johannesburg, South Africa for an extended “spring break” driving from South Africa through Botswana to Victoria Falls on the Zimbabwe/Zambia border. Along the way, they ventured into the Central Kalahari Desert and learned the bushman secret for making fire, explored the watery edges of the Okavango Delta and the elephant kingdom of Chobe National Park. They encountered cheeky monkeys, angry elephants, belaying spiders, armies of frogs, big cats, hyenas and the sights, sounds and smells of the African Bush. This Armchair Adventure will discuss the logistics of independent safari in Botswana, the stories discovered along the way and the unique challenges of traveling with children in a risky and threatening environment.

February 5th | Haida Gwaii by Sea Kayak | Presented by Beverly Boynton

Gwaii Haanas is a Canadian National Park located in southernmost Haida Gwaii, an archipelago 75 miles off the mainland of northern British Columbia. Gwaii Haanas is a wild place without cell phones, roads or commercial development; it is protected from mountaintop to ocean depth. A small group of Jacksonites spent three weeks sea kayaking on the leeward east side, where the temperate rain forest meets the sea. The ecology here is complex, from the tundra of the rugged San Christoval Range down to the intertidal zones of the Pacific Ocean. The native Haida Nation has created and maintained a culture tightly intertwined with the land and sea, and are key to any understanding of this beautiful area. Join Beverly Boynton in her presentation of this powerful place.

February 12th | Sailing From Australia to Louisade Archepellago, Papua New Guinea | Presented by Laurie Thal

Join Laurie Thal on a seven week sailing adventure from Townsville, Australia to the Louisade Archipellago, Papua New Guinea. The rally of sailboats were greeted with festivals, singing and dancing on a dozen isolated islands in the Coral Sea. Villagers showed their appreciation for the abundance of supplies for their schools and medical clinics that the sailboats brought to them. Experience a rare glimpse of these beautiful people and their own sailing culture.

February 19th | 2189 Miles on the Appalachian Trail | Presented by Evan Giles & Jason Fariss

The saying goes ...“each year 2,000 people start the Appalachian Trail and only 200 finish”. In the summer of 2010, two best friends, Evan Giles and Jason Fariss, at age 25 were among that 2,000. After 6 months of hiking together from Georgia to Maine, they were also part of that 200 that finished.  If you’ve ever dreamed of thru-hiking one of America’s famous long trails or wanted to know more about life on the AT, join Evan and Jason for some great stories from their journey. Through photos, you’ll follow along with them from state to state and mile after mile. They’ll discuss the struggles and successes of long distance hiking, the AT culture and the challenges of living out of a backpack. You’ll watch as their beards grow out of control and listen as their lives were changed forever.

February 26th | Nepal:  Journey to Discover the Annapurna & Upper Mustang | Presented by Cathy Shill

Join traveler and local guide, Cathy Shill, to visit the Annapurna and Upper Mustang region of Nepal where the traditional culture of Tibet remains. The journey was a pilgrimage, so come to discover the rich spiritual foundations in this remote part of the world. You will follow the trek beneath 8,000 meter peaks as you learn about the culture, visit sacred sites and the joy of trekking 160 miles.

March 5th | Exploring Some of Central Asia's Mountains | Presented by Dina Mishev

Join Dina Mishev for an Armchair Adventure to the mountains of Central Asia: skiing a 7,500 meter peak in far western China and trekking in Tajikistan’s Fan Mountains. Near the China/Kyrgyzstan/Pakistan border, Mustaghata is billed as the “easiest” 7,500 meter (24,757 ‘) mountain in the world. Dina’s presentation and photos highlight that there is no such thing as an “easy” 7,500 meter peak, especially when you’re skiing it. Even suffering at high altitude, the high mountain beauty of the region is impossible to ignore. The presentation also includes trekking in Tajikistan’s Fan Mountains, a Teton-esque range in the northwestern corner of the country; ninety three percent of Tajikistan is mountainous.

March 12th | Walk the Adventure:  Spain & Wales | Presented by Denny Emory

Join long time valley resident, Denny Emory, as he turns his attention to walking tours. In 2012 he and his sister, Cally, struck out on the Camino Santiago del Norte across the top of northern Spain en route to Santiago de Compostela. In 2013 they walked down the Wye River Valley and on to the Marcher Castles in central Wales.  Walking tours, guided, self-guided and supported, are common in many wonderful and interesting parts of the world. Denny will share his photos, experiences and insights into a fun way of walking.

March 19th | Trekking & Sights of Western Bhutan and the Kathmandu Area of Nepal | Presented by Mike Adler

Join Mike Adler for a Armchair Adventure highlighting a trip taken in 2013 to western Bhutan and the Kathmandu area of Nepal. The trip included a trek to the Phobjika Valley located at over 10,000’ and is the winter home for the endangered Black Neck Cranes. Visits to several monasteries, including the Lungchutse Monastery located at over 12,000’ offering magnificent views of the snow capped high Himalaya, and the famous Tiger’s Nest Monastery located on a 2000’ cliff will be highlighted. The trip concluded in Kathmandu with a weekend visit to Nagarkot, which is set among beautiful gardens and offers sweeping views of the Nepal Himalaya.