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Multisport Adventure

Monday, June 16, 2014

New Brunswick Week—First Stop, Grand Manan

Located off the coast of Lubec, Maine, but considered part of New Brunswick, Grand Manan not only feels lost geographically, but lost in time. Take the 90-minute ferry ride over from Blacks Harbour and you arrive on an island with one main road, several inns and restaurants, one liquor store, and relatively few other amenities. Pirate Captain Kidd found it to be the perfect place to escape the law. Winslow Homer found the sheer basalt cliffs ideally suited for his canvas. Writer Willa Cather found the necessary quietude to pen her novels. Little has changed since the author was here almost a century ago. Time is best understood by sunrise and sunset, low tide and high tide. And since Grand Manan is the largest island in the Bay of Fundy, expect those tidal shifts to be the largest in the world, often in excess of 35 feet. 
 
I arrive on Grand Manan later this afternoon as part of my weeklong trip to New Brunswick that will also bring me to the charming seaside village of St. Andrews for the reopening of the classic Algonquin Resort and onward to the capital city of Fredericton. Stick around to hear about my adventures biking, hiking, sailing, sea kayaking, and whalewatching the region, only to be rewarded for my efforts with a nightly dinner of freshly caught seafood. It’s great to be back in New Brunswick! 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 06/16/14 at 08:00 AM
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Wednesday, June 05, 2013

O.A.R.S. Multisport Trip to Yellowstone

Along with Sobek, O.A.R.S has been a pioneer in the world of whitewater rafting, first making its debut in 1969. Today, the California-based company runs more than 1,230 miles of rivers in America, plus guiding clientele on rivers in 14 other countries. They include such classic whitewater runs as Alaska’s Tatshenshini, Idaho’s iconic Main Salmon River, Chile’s Futaleufu River, and the legendary Zambezi in Zambia. Lately, however, I’ve been intrigued by the outfitter’s expansion to multisport trips, ideally suited for families who want to sample a different sport each day. Just like Backroads has a strong biking component on their multisport jaunts, O.A.R.S. takes advantage of their expertise, water sports. Rafting and sea kayaking are combined with hiking and horseback riding options. For example, on their 6-day trip to Yellowstone and the Tetons, you’ll paddle on Jackson Lake under the snowcapped peaks of the Tetons, raft the Snake River, and sea kayak Yellowstone Lake, with hikes in Moran Bay and around the geysers thrown in for the landlubbers. The company also leads other multisport adventures to the Galapagos, Fiji, Belize, and my favorite whitewater run in North America, the Chilko in BC. Everett Potter's Travel Report is now offering a chance to win an O.A.R.S. trip to Yellowstone this summer. The winning prize is for two people. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 06/05/13 at 11:00 AM
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Monday, November 05, 2012

Winter Offerings from the Appalachian Mountain Club

If history is on our side, New England usually bounces back from a dismal ski season with an overwhelming amount of snow. The AMC is already preparing for this deluge by teaming up with local ski areas in New Hampshire. Stay at Highland Lodge in Crawford Notch or the Joe Dodge Lodge in Pinkham Notch and ski at nearby Bretton Woods, Wildcat, Attitash, and the expansive network of Nordic trails at Jackson XC. The price includes lodging, ski pass, dinner and breakfast. And if you book before December 15th, you could save up to 30 percent off the price. Also check out their long list of programs for adults and families, including weekend courses on winter photography, snowshoeing, tracking winter animals, climbing a 4,000-foot peak, and other winter adventures. Finally, don’t overlook the opportunity to cross-country ski from Maine lodge to lodge on glorious backcountry ski routes nestled alongside the 100-Mile Wilderness Trail. The AMC will shuttle luggage from one historic sporting camp to the next and the price includes lodging and all meals. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/05/12 at 01:00 PM
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Monday, February 13, 2012

VOGA Features Adventure Weekend for Women in Vermont

Vermont Outdoor Guide Association (VOGA) will feature a weekend of outdoor recreation and education on the shores of Lake Morey the weekend of March 2-4. Offered to all women over the age of 15, courses will include dog sledding, fire making, traditional winter camping, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, orienteering, ice fishing and much more. You can camp outside or spend the night in a heated cabin. Cost for the all-inclusive weekend program is $285. Registration for courses is first come, first serve, so sign up now.
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 02/13/12 at 02:00 PM
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Friday, February 10, 2012

Additional Adventures Led by Mountain Travel Sobek in 2012

I’d be remiss to only discuss Mountain Travel Sobek’s intriguing trip to North Korea in September. MTS has a slew of other phenomenal trips scheduled this year including their first-ever trans-Himalayan trek in Nar & Phu: The Forbidden Valleys of Nepal, for dedicated high altitude trekkers. Other new adventures they’re launching in 2012 include a 28-day trek that stretches from coast to coast across Iceland, hiking in the Swiss Alps and staying at classic Swiss lodges for the more moderate hiker, and a 9-day rafting and trekking adventure in the Annapurna Range. Also, don’t steer away from their more traditional rafting adventures, especially on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River and Alaska’s Tatshenshini, two of the most adrenalin-pumping multi-day river outings in North America. 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 02/10/12 at 02:00 PM
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Friday, October 28, 2011

Adventures in the Everglades

The best way to tackle the immensity of the 1,506,539-acre Everglades National Park is to take it in chunks.  At Shark Valley Visitor Center at the northern tip of the Everglades, rent bikes from the rangers and get ready for one of the most exhilarating 15-mile loops of your life. More than likely, it will take you an hour to bike that first mile. That’s because you’ll want to stop every 20 yards to get another photograph of an alligator sleeping in the tall grass, large turtles sunbathing on rocks, and the extraordinary amount of birdlife that call the canal next to the bike trail home. Anhingas dry their wings on the branches of the gumbo limbo tree, wood storks, white whooping cranes, and the long-legged great blue heron stand tall in the shallow water, while pink roseate spoonbills fly over the royal palms. Or canoe a stretch of the 99-mile Wilderness Waterway from Everglades City to Flamingo as you paddle though mangrove swamps and creeks to the deserted white beaches of anonymous cays. If the canoe starts to rock, slap your paddle firmly against the water. This usually scares off alligators and those doe-eyed West Indian manatees. 
 


Posted by Steve Jermanok on 10/28/11 at 01:00 PM
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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Believe in Belize

With the latest surge in crime in Mexico, travelers are seeking an alternative this winter. One needs to look no further than the country that borders Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, Belize. Best known for the longest barrier reef this side of Australia, Belize has a magical interior that should not be overlooked.  Head to San Ignacio to explore the Mountain Pine Ridge on horseback or canoe though the rainforest on the Macal River. You’ll swim under waterfalls and very likely spot toucans. This section of the country is also known for its abundance of Mayan ruins, including Caracol, site of the 140-foot high Caana (Sky Palace) and the legendary Tikal in neighboring Guatemala. Nestled amidst the Belize interior, Chaa Creek is your upscale guide to the surrounding rainforest and Mayan Ruins. The 365-acre nature preserve sits on a hillside of tall mahogany and cedar trees overlooking the Macal River. The property offers two dozen deluxe bungalows, including a treetop suite with whirlpool, new spa, and a restaurant that thrives on local fare. Yet, Chaa Creek’s real forte is guiding families deep into the jungle. Or check out Ka'ana, a new 15-room upscale boutique resort that will help set up all your adventures in Belize. 

 


Posted by Steve Jermanok on 10/27/11 at 01:00 PM
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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

My Favorite Fall Foliage Travels—Cannon Beach, Oregon

Only a 90-minute drive from Portland, Cannon Beach is where the mighty timber of the Pacific Northwest meets the long stretch of beach from California, offering the best of both worlds. First stop is towering Haystack Rock, which stands tall in the shallow waters, inspiring awe from all who stroll hand-in-hand on the hard-packed sand. Be on the lookout for the resident pod of grey whales off the Oregon coast which number around 200. Then drive over to nearby Ecola State Park and take a hike in this Emerald Forest, where massive 300 year-old Sitka spruce trees have trunks as wide as a redwood. The woods soon recede, replaced by sandstone bluffs, pink colored beaches and the great expanse of the Pacific.  Make your way south, stopping in the fishing community of Bay City for small, tender Kumamoto oysters on the half shell at Pacific Oyster. Dessert is creamy blackberry ice cream at Tillamook Cheese Factory. Spend the night in affordable Manzanita, where rooms at the Spindrift Inn are as low as $75 a night in the high season months of September and October.
 


Posted by Steve Jermanok on 09/14/11 at 01:00 PM
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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Top 10 Adventures Along the New England Coast

Just in case you don’t live in Boston or read the newspaper, I want to link you to an article I wrote in last Sunday’s Boston Globe on Top 10 Coastal Adventures. Included are some of my favorite jaunts in New England like biking on the Province Lands Bike Trail in P’town, sea kayaking with the osprey and harbor seals in Sheepscot Bay, Maine, and surfcasting for stripers on the Vineyard. Try one of these activities and you won’t regret it.

 


Posted by Steve Jermanok on 08/11/11 at 01:00 PM
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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Adventure in Halong Bay, Vietnam

A World Heritage Site, Halong Bay is known for its limestone karsts that jut up from sea making this one of the most striking cruise destinations in the world. But if you read my recent article in The Boston Globe, you’d know that any place that has cruises now offers adventure. Emeraude Classic Cruises has teamed with Slo Pony Adventures, owned by an American duo, to offer a three-day, two-night cruise in Halong Bay. Sure, you’ll get to sit back and marvel at the spectacle with gin and tonic in hand. That’s a reward for the daily dose of adventure that includes sea kayaking, rock climbing, and trekking through Butterfly Valley in the National Park to find waterfalls hidden in the lush terrain.
 


Posted by Steve Jermanok on 01/11/11 at 02:00 PM
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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk.

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