Today we have a special post – hopefully the first step in a new feature we will be bringing you regularly here at the Adayak Blog. In an effort to help connect you to real life adventurers and outdoor enthusiasts across the world (remember, we also bring you Trail Talk every Friday) we are going to start bringing to you interviews with some exciting people.
First up is Kraig Becker from The Adventure Blog. His blog’s tagline is “News, commentary, and insights on adventures, and adventurers, from around the globe.” Kraig is very dedicated to his blog and giving readers unique content from far off places. There have been so many times where I’ve first heard about some expedition or new gear directly from Kraig’s blog. He also covers a lot of topics that are hard to find like polar expeditions.
My questions are in bold and his answers are just below it. Enjoy!
Let’s get right to it – you just got back from Nepal and a trek to Everest Base Camp. Tell me about how that trip came about and your experience there.
The Everest Base Camp trek has always been high on my “life list” of things to do, and I’ve been planning to make the hike for several years. I’ve put it off in favor or other trips for sometime, but this spring I decided it was finally time to make it a reality, and it was definitely worth the wait.
Trekking in Nepal is a fantastic experience. The scenery is breathtaking and the mountains are amazing. That said, I’d recommend anyone who goes on the trek be physically prepared. It is a demanding experience to say the least.
Will you go back to Nepal? Do you have plans to summit Everest?
I’d love to go back and make the Annapurna Circuit next time. It is widely considered to be amongst the most beautiful treks in the world, and it is a different experience from trekking to EBC. As much as I’d like to go back, I don’t have any plans to summit Everest any time in the near future. While making the climb sounds amazing, I don’t have the cash (upwards of $50,000) nor the time off work (2 months!) to really give the climb a go.
When did you realize your passion for adventure and the outdoors? Was it something you always had in you, or maybe a trip that inspired you when you were young?
I grew up in the outdoors. My father is an avid outdoorsman and loves to hunt. At a young age he was taking my brother and I out to the woods with him, and that was the start of my love for the outdoors as well. I also grew up reading tales of great adventures, such stories about Robert Falcon Scott and his tragic South Pole expedition or tales of George Mallory and his efforts on Everest. Those stories have influenced me to want to travel to remote places and have some adventures of my own.
You cover a wide range of topics on your Adventure Blog… from mountaineering to biking to sailing. What is your favorite topic to write about?
That’s a tough one! I really like to write about adventure in what ever form that I can find it. Obviously, there are topics that I cover pretty deeply, such as climbing Everest or polar expeditions, but I always enjoy finding out about some interesting new expedition that no one else has done before. I also enjoy when I get the opportunity to correspond directly with the adventurers heading off on these expeditions.
If you were heading on a trip tomorrow, would you be on your feet, in a boat, on skis or riding a bike?
Good question! The obvious answer for me is probably feet, as I love to hike and I’ve had the opportunity to do some cool treks. But having just returned from Everest, I think I’d like to do something different. I great trip by bike sounds like a great change of pace at the moment.
What’s the most challenging adventure you’ve had yet? Any specific climbs or long distance hikes that just beat the crap out of you?
As challenging and demanding as the Everest Base Camp trek was, I still think it isn’t as difficult as Kilimanjaro. For starters, Kili is taller, and the trek is shorter, which means you’re gaining altitude faster as well. I was shocked at how steep the trail was even on day one. There weren’t a lot of switchbacks along the way, just lots of up!
I’ve seen you post a few movie trailers on your blog. Are you in to IMAX movies? Do you have a favorite adventure film? And what’s your general all-time favorite movie.
I’m a huge movie fan in general, and always enjoy good cinema, no matter what the genre. When it comes to my favorite adventure film, there is only one answer. I’m a huge fan of the Indiana Jones movies, especially Raiders of the Lost Ark. Those films have been in inspiration to travel as too, believe it or not. As for my all time favorite film, well, lets just say I’m a huge Star Wars geek.
Ever run in a bear or something scary in the wild? Maybe bigfoot … ?
I’ve been keeping my eyes peeled for Bigfoot for years, but I still haven’t spotted him. I even looked for the Yeti while in the Himalaya, but no luck there either. I remain hopeful nonetheless.
You’ve been blogging for over 4 years on The Adventure Blog… what’s the background on your site and how do you keep it going?
I started the site after having a conversation with a friend who insisted that there were no more great adventures to be had, and that everything had been done. I told him that there were plenty of amazing men and women still doing adventurous things if you looked hard enough. The blog is an extension of me looking hard enough and sharing those stories with others.
The Adventure Blog is definitely a labor of love, but I enjoy writing it. Through the blog I’ve had the good fortune of meeting some amazing people, visiting some amazing places, and witnessing some amazing things. I continue to have a passion for writing, travel, and adventure, and that inspires me to keep going.
Where to next?
Another good question. Since I’ve only been home about two weeks, and I’m still recovering from the Everest trip, I haven’t thought about it too much yet. But I’m leaning towards either going to Botswana or to Venezuela.
If I head to South America, it’ll be to trek Roriama, a remote table top mountain that served as the inspiration for Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World.
But a part of me wants to return to Africa, and a safari on boat and by dugout canoe in Botswana seems like it would be a great adventure too.
Thank you for the interview.