Puccio Puts the Future On Pause

SALT LAKE CITY--Whenever Alex Puccio glanced over a marvelously muscled shoulder to survey the competition last weekend in Salt Lake City, she spied not climbers like herself whose careers and bodies were sculpted from granite but the gym-rendered audacity and impatience of bouldering’s next generation. To claim her record-continuing 11th national bouldering title at the USA Climbing open championships on Saturday night, Puccio for a second straight year paused a new guard so insistent upon change. As in 2017, she shared the podium with a pair of 16-year-olds, Ashima Shiraishi of New York and Brooke Raboutou of Boulder, Colorado. To put things into perspective, Shiraishi and Raboutou still were in kindergarten when Puccio won her first title in 2007. Puccio, who recently moved to Boston, also coached Raboutou at ABC Climbing in Boulder. At 28, Puccio is one of the “old ladies” of climbing and finds herself at a bit of a crossroads. “Our sport is so young, people are breaking the mold of what can be done all the time,” she said. “I’m just fortunate enough that I’m one of those … [Read More...]

Nature Calls for 2018

I've always wanted to create a wildlife calendar. Last year's came close, with half of the images, plus the cover. This year fulfills the dream, mostly meaning that I was out among winged and furry beings enough. My friend, Paul Bannick, really is the inspiration for this. When I was looking to improve my photography, he got me hooked on birds and taught me essential lessons about noticing patterns and being deliberate about setting up shots, not to mention being a stickler about ethics. We even were together (see photo) for one of the images in this year's calendar, the one of the long-eared owl on takeoff. But, alas, I did a calendar, and all Paul did was publish a sensational book, "Owl," that has won awards and should be on your holiday gift list. Making calendars is not a business for me. I started a few years ago b ecause some friends asked me to. I make them the way I like them – with nice paper so the images pop and I can actually write on them. Also I just changed printers to Printing Center USA, and my work not only looks better than ever, the calendars are bound and … [Read More...]

Seattle Womxn’s March 2017

Shot and produced by Florangela Davila and Glenn Nelson, with music by our friends, The Westerlies.   https://vimeo.com/201172621 … [Read More...]

Why are Our Parks So White?

This piece originally appeared in the New York Times July 10, 2015 SEATTLE — MOUNT RAINIER stands sentry over Seattle. On clear days, the mountain is the dominant backdrop, particularly in the city’s southeast, where its most racially diverse neighborhoods embrace their majestic setting with names like Rainier Valley and Rainier Beach. Michelle Perry lives in an adjoining neighborhood and travels to work on Rainier Avenue South. The looming mountain enchants and beguiles nearly the entire way. She knows she can keep driving south and visit Rainier and the national park that surrounds it. Ms. Perry, 58, an African-American, has an idea about what she’d find up there — mosquitoes, which she hates, and bears, cougars and wolves, which she fears. “The mountains are beautiful to watch,” she said, pausing for effect, “from a distance.” As it approaches its centennial on Aug. 25, 2016, the National Park Service says it wants to encourage people like Ms. Perry to visit. It has its work cut out for it. The national parks attracted a record 292.8 million visitors in 2014, but a vast … [Read More...]

Outdoors Buzz

Nature Calls for 2018

I've always wanted to create a wildlife calendar. Last year's came close, with half of the images, plus the cover. This year fulfills the dream, mostly meaning that I was out among winged and furry beings enough. My friend, Paul Bannick, really is the inspiration for … [Read More...]

More Outdoors Buzz

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Farewell Air Körbes

Carla Körbes (photo by Patrick Fraser) A sportswriter’s appreciation of a Jordan-like ballerina quietly retiring at the top of her game.   The first time I saw Carla Körbes dance reminded me of the first time I saw Michael Jordan play basketball. Jordan was a rookie for the Chicago Bulls and I’d watched him for about 30 seconds. He hadn’t … [Read More...]

Cuckoo Over Owls

It once roosted in a thicket the size of a two-car garage, amidst wetlands and diked agricultural fields near Stanwood. The brush was so thick, the Long-Eared Owl must have felt unassailable. Long-barreled photographic devices proliferated and trained at it like arms in a cold war. The birders and the avian paparazzi jostled and bickered and shoved … [Read More...]

2015 Calendar: Nature Calls

People keep telling me, “You should do a calendar!” And other people smarter than me say, “You’ll be sorry!” I'm heeding the former; let's prove those latter folks wrong! I know $30 is at the high end for a calendar, but, honestly, I might make a couple bucks on each, paying for half a gallon of the many gallons of gas I burned, chasing the … [Read More...]