The 2020 Spring issue of Adventure Pro Magazine celebrates entering the outdoors with enlightened storytelling and scenic photography

A first step into the outdoors could be at the hand of a friend or family member, by taking a class or by simply plunging in. However we enter the outdoors, we should expect our fair share of triumphs and mistakes. Together they plot our individual process of discovery, which we hope is a lucky streak of unintended consequences that builds confidence and purchases our path to outdoor savvy.

Lucky me, I was raised in the last house on a street where our back door led to a tremendous expanse of public land, creek included. Exploring the nooks and crannies of a backyard badlands shaped me into an effective opportunist, exposing me to the dangers of heights, wildlife, dicey water, dehydration, fatigue, getting lost − and the gratification of discovering how to know better.

As a college student in a mountain town, my friends were my climbing and paddling guides, complete with gear. The badlands had prepared me well for the mountains, so physically the legwork came easy. Then, as a young editor of a national paddlesports publication, I relished the opportunity to become a proficient whitewater paddler.

Now I’m a dad. My wife and I share the same approach to raising outdoor kids, which is to just get them out there.

We anchored our first child − asleep in her baby carrier − to the base of a climbing crag while we top-roped routes in Jack’s Canyon. She fit nicely into the front stash pocket of my day pack the day we forgot her backpack carrier on a climb in the La Salles.

No backpack carrier? We’re going anyway! Editor Jan Nesset descends Sharkstooth Peak with Kid One strapped into his daypack.Christina Nesset

By the time her sister arrived, so had some rules. And the realization that Kid One was nothing like Kid Two, who was ripping up Durango’s BMX track even before she had a bike with pedals. As the youngest, her little legs worked twice as hard to keep up on our approaches to mountains, which may be a big reason she became gleeful when the climbing got steep.

unintended consequences
Every outdoor experience helps to builds confidence and outdoor savvy. Here, Kid Two is ready to take on the world with a launch off the Animas River!Jan Nesset

Everybody’s entry into the outdoors is as different as how we choose to pursue the outdoors when it enters our blood.

The stories in this issue represent those differences. From cover to cover the issue is rich with writing from talented writers whose approaches to the outdoors are vastly different.

Morgan Tilton travels the world seeking stories. Prior to heading to British Columbia to sync up skiing and surfing in the same 24-hour period, the author and writer wrote “Christened by the Black” for this issue. A novice rock climber, this is her story about upping her rock-climbing game with a multi-pitch route in the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.

A former editor of Adventure Pro, Tiona “Ti” Eversole tackled the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic in 2019 and writes about it in “Silverton or Bust.” A conditioned mountain biker, Ti put in just four rides on a road bike before accomplishing the Iron Horse. That grit put insight into her words!

Writer Josh Jespersen is one of those outdoor athletes who frequently pushes his limits to the abyss of possibility – and then chooses to take a break with more of the same, albeit less and different. In “A Hard Reset” Josh contemplates his motives and finds a landing.

In the end, what makes our experiences valuable is not that they take place outdoors, but the journeys we follow outdoors. They plot our story.

So, what’s your story?