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Monday, October 23, 2017

Weekly Post: The Higher You Get, The Higher You Get by Robert Glenn Ketchum

by Robert Glenn Ketchum


Growing up my parents had a home near Sun Valley, Idaho. It was there that I learned to ski. Over many years I befriended members of the Decker Flats Climbing and Frisbee Club, with whom I had both life, and art-forming outdoor experiences. I had my camera, and these are my adventures.




Monday, October 23, 2017

The Higher You Get, The Higher You Get - Sun Valley and the DFC&FC, #77:
THE HIGHER YOU GET, THE HIGHER YOU GET, #77:  I bend over my camera as I change lenses, using my body to shelter it from any possible falling snow. When I stand back up, Cobb has “emerged,” raging like a Himalayan summit in a storm, now etched against an ever bluer and clearer sky. I am sure each of us utters, “Oh, my God!” at least a dozen times. For some moments Cobb seems so brightly illuminated, we are sure the storm is breaking off, but after a spectacular display of rock and form, the surging clouds soup in the valley below us, reasserts itself and banishes our “peak dream” into the darkening night. I still have a good distance to ski downhill, and I do not want to do it in flat light like last night, because this hill is much steeper and more complicated. My 300mm lens is too large to ski with it out and exposed, so it has to go back in my pack go back in my pack, but before putting it there, I thought I would take on last look around.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2017, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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Weekly Post: STONED IMMACULATE: A Trip in the Desert by Robert Glenn Ketchum

STONED IMMACULATE:  A Trip in the Desert
by Robert Glenn Ketchum

As a young photographer, two places I “discovered” by chance greatly influenced both my photographic vision and my personal relationship with the greater planet. A previous blog, LIMEKILN, is the story of the first location. THIS is the second location which I discovered because my car broke down. As Jim Morrison/The Doors wrote, “Out here we is stoned Immaculate!"





Monday, October 23, 2017
"Contrastic Sinewate (Varyl 1)"
circa 1985-1995
Stoned Immaculate, #51:
Immaculate, #51:  from the portfolio, STONED IMMACULATE

photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2017, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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Friday, October 20, 2017

Weekly Post: The Daze of My Life: Robert Glenn Ketchum, An Autobiography


Biographies are studies of someone's life based on cumulative research. Good ones may reveal something, but probably barely scratch the surface of what actually went on. The internet is allowing me to do something VERY different. 
~Robert Glenn Ketchum



Friday, October 20, 2017

The Daze of My Life:  Robert Glenn Ketchum, An Autobiography #68:
Daze, #68: As much as I am enjoying the summer backpacking with my friends, my work from those trips only becomes public through prints I exhibit. Few magazines seem interested in stories about a group of crazies wandering at alpine. Because I have already met POWDER magazine, and they DO want to work with me, that association fuels numerous ideas to generate stories, while accomplishing personal work simultaneously. Besides the rebuilding of Pioneer Cabin, POWDER also publishes my Big Mountain and Glacier National Park imagery, and so I design a winter-on-the-road, that I think will create a great amount of new material for both of us. My partner, Vicki Golden (posts #57 & 58), and I, rig the van for maximum warmth and head from LA to Zion National Park. The upper reaches of Zion can be skied when there is snow, but on our visit, there is not enough to do so, so we hike a bit and then move on. Later that day, at the start of a VERY cold evening, we arrive on the rim view road overlooking Bryce Canyon National Park. We are on a high plateau of 8,500ft +. It is clear night with the bottom falling out of the thermometer. We will go below zero before dawn. No surprise to us, we are the only ones here, so I park the van to get direct sun on the motor in the morning, and Vicki and I, bundle up for the night, and have dinner.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2017 
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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Thursday, October 19, 2017

Weekly Post, High and Wild: Three Years of Wandering in the Wind Rivers

High and Wild: Three Years of Wandering in the Wind Rivers
by Robert Glenn Ketchum

After receiving my MFA from CalArts, I was invited by Bill Lund, Sharon Disney’s husband, to come stay at the families' Diamond-D Ranch in Dubois, Wyoming. Bill thought I might like to photograph in the nearby Wind River Mountains, which I did, backpacking through them extensively over the next three summers. Welcome to a world of big granite walls and huge alpine lakes!




Thursday, October 19, 2017

High and Wild:  Three Years of Wandering in the Wind Rivers, #8:
Wind River, #8: The morning dawns cool and breezy, and we wake to the sound of the wind blowing through the stands of trees. Weather is pouring over us in the form of small, puffy cumulus clouds, but they are NOT building up, they are blowing through - at least at the moment. It feels like a fall day, more than a summer one, and we all agree to proceed with our plans. Breakfast, daypacks and cameras, out on to the trail, and into Ramshorn Basin. The “basin” begins as another expansive pitch of meadows with tree stands, but it rises more steeply. The constant breeze increases as we ascend, and then becomes wind storm, as the tree stands sheltering us somewhat, cease, and our walk continues through a big, broad meadow that is totally exposed. These meadows are not as lush or as tall with flowers as those where we have been, but they are still completely covered with tiny alpine blooms that are hugging the ground, and staying out of the cold breeze as much as possible. At the head of the basin, we find numerous snow patches left from the previous winter, even though we are in the heat of August. The terrain is very spare, but quite weirdly garden-like with flowers popping up anywhere there is supportive soil. To us, strangely, summiting is a meadow walk-up, with the only rock we encounter being the rubble where no meadows are growing. Note also that it is hard to tell from here which of these is the actual Ramshorn.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2017, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

Follow Robert Glenn Ketchum's Photographic Activism Online:
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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Weekly Post: Big Mountain and Glacier National Park - Expanding My Winter Consciousness

Big Mountain and Glacier National Park - 
Expanding My Winter Consciousness
by Robert Glenn Ketchum

In the early '70’s, I was doing a lot of winter adventuring with my friends in the Decker Flats Climbing and Frisbee Club, and a client invited me to take pictures at Big Mountain, a ski resort in Montana. Glacier National Park was not far away, so I thought that might be an interesting place to explore in the winter, as well. These two locations added important work to my exhibits and portfolios, and definitely expanded/sobered my winter consciousness.




Thursday, October 19, 2017

Big Mountain and Glacier National Park - Expanding My Winter Consciousness, #12:
Big Mountain, #12: Besides the ie crystals from the humid lake environment that, literally, engulf the trees. When it does snow, the “banana belt” effect usually makes it a heavy, wet snow, rather than a dry powder. That wet snow also accumulates on the crystallized trees, adding to their volume, and smothering all exposed surfaces of branch and trunk. Until you see this, it is hard to imagine, so I arrange to have a guided ski tour by Big Mountain ski patrol to introduce me to The Fantasy Forest and these strange snow conditions. I also inform Big Mountain that I am skiing with heel-free telemark bindings, and and they respond that in “the forest” they would actually prefer that, if I hope to get around. Interestingly, my guides are both experienced telemark skiers who will also be heel-free skiing. I am to meet them at the summit, early in the morning, and as I start the day it is clear and cold with a lot of sun. The road to the resort is VERY icy because of all the moisture in the air, and then on the lift, on my way to the summit, I begin to see what the crystallized vapor and wet snowfalls do to the trees. I am not even close to the top yet, and every 100-yards or so upslope, it just gets stranger and stranger. You can see there are a lot of happy skiers out, however.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2017, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

Follow Robert Glenn Ketchum's Photographic Activism Online:
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Weekly Post: Adventuring on the Yakutat Forelands - Bowing before St. Elias by Robert Glenn Ketchum

Adventuring on the Yakutat Forelands - Bowing before St. Elias
by Robert Glenn Ketchum

The Yakutat Forelands are where the Tongass rainforest and the Chugach forest to the north meet. It is also home to many large glaciers, a stunning coastline, the huge Alsek-Tatshenshini river, and Icy Bay, which sits at the foot of Mount St. Elias, the greatest vertical rise from sea level in the world. There is a lot of powerful energy out here.




Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Adventuring on the Yakutat Forelands - Bowing before St. Elias, #41:
The Yakutat Forelands, #41: Quick-mud, you say? What is quick-mud? Behold the image before you. It could be another planet. It could be a volcanic crater. It is, in fact, the mud-slime outflow abridging a section of the Malaspina Glacier. You can see the obvious water in this picture as it pools in small lakes and fingers of flow, but what you cannot read correctly, is that the mud here is nearly as liquid as the water. Like quicksand, this mud briefly supports weight upon it, and then the object begins to sink in. To explore St. Elias using the Malaspina Glacier as an approach is a very tricky navigation. Although in rapid retreat, this is still the largest piedmont glaciers in the world, and the debris field that now surrounds it because of the retreat, is like a minefield after a war - the terrain is in ruin and difficult to navigate; there are hazards everywhere; and, after you have done the work, where are you?
photograph(s) © copyright, Robert Glenn Ketchum, 2017, @RbtGlennKetchum, @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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Weekly Post, ARCTIC: At the Cutting Edge of Climate Change

ARCTIC:  At the Cutting Edge of Climate Change
by Robert Glenn Ketchum



In 1993, I began traveling to the Arctic. I have been across The Northwest Passage by yacht; to the North Pole twice; to little-visited Russian islands; and aboard research vessels in Greenland, Labrador, Newfoundland, and Baffin Island, taking the opportunity to visit Iqualuit, the capital of Nunavut, the recently created Inuit nation and territories.






Wednesday, October 18, 2017

ARCTIC:  At the Cutting Edge of Climate Change, #62:
ARCTIC, #62: With Matty Island just slightly behind us to the west, we are still modestly sheltered by Cape Victoria, but bergs are beginning to appear all around us in the water. They are not densely packed yet, but we know that it is only a matter of time before that changes. Ice conditions will grow considerably worse as we get closer to the James Ross straight, a likely crux point in this journey that we are unsure is open enough for us to pass through. Besides the now-unrelenting cool breeze, there is no green ice/green water to be seen anywhere, anymore. We have entered a new domain of older, harder, denser ice, and it is going to start coming in both larger volume, AND larger size of bergs. With this amount of hard ice around us, “Itasca” is forced to cruise at cautious speeds, and frequently has audible, physical contact with sizable pieces. We will make the most efficient use of navigation time, if we know where the open water lies, so things start getting warmed up on the helicopter flight deck, because we are going up to have a look around. Join John Bockstoce and I, next week. Do you think all of the Arctic looks like this ? think again!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2017, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Weekly Post: THE TONGASS: Stop the Cut, There are Salmon in the Trees by Robert Glenn Ketchum

THE TONGASS:  Stop the Cut, There are Salmon in the Trees
by Robert Glenn Ketchum
In 1985, I began a 2-year commission to explore the Tongass rainforest, the largest forest in the United States Forest Service (USFS) system AND the largest temperate rainforest in the world. It was a unique, old-growth environment under siege from industrial logging. The resulting investigative book I published helped to pass the Tongass Timber Reform Bill, protect 1,000,000 acres of old-growth, and create 11 new wilderness areas. This is the story of how that was achieved.





Tuesday, October 17, 2017

THE TONGASS:  Stop the Cut, There are Salmon in the Trees, #60:
THE TONGASS, #60: If you have never been to a town like Petersburg, one that is so dedicated to a fishing economy, it is hard to explain the vibe in the air. It is alive with work, and smells, and sounds. Everyone is busy doing something. Well, except for these birds. They are just waiting for the next sound of splashing from the processing waste pipe, and then they will return to their feeding frenzy. Speaking of which, it is just about that time for us, the guests of the “Observer,” to have dinner as well. With night falling, we retire to the fantail to dine, then after dinner, many of us go ashore. I wander streets lined by VERY tidy homes, many of which display Norwegian flags or Viking banners, and eventually I find myself in a warm, friendly bar surrounded by drunk Norwegian fishermen and their friends, all of whom know each other well. Over the ensuing years I will spend in the Tongass, I will come to realize that Petersburg, is unique - a tight-knit community of people that resists commercial tourism, mining, and industrial logging, and are quite literally living off the land in a very sophisticated way, WITHOUT destroying it!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2017, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: http://www.LittleBearProd.com
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