Split Rock River Loop

Split Rock River Loop

Returning to source on the SHT

Every week has its Sunday. The day where we collectively agree that its okay to take a rest from buzzing about and working towards the next big thing. For some its a day of rest and relaxation. For others, a time of gathering with friends and family. This past Sunday was my day for returning to nature in my own backyard; the Superior Hiking Trail.

Split rok, Minnesota, River, Lighthouse, Superior Hiking Trail, Granite Ger Grounds Keepers, Landscape Photography, Snowy, ice

The SHT stretches 310 miles along the North Shore of Lake Superior. Each section holds its own unique essence. Living in Duluth, I find that no matter where I go along the shore I can always link up with the trail. The serene ecosystems found amongst the natural world make sure that I do just that. I return to these places to become them. For we are but a product of our environments on the subconscious level. I am making sure to place myself in healthy, abundant, and zen-like areas.

Tulip (My 2 year old springer spaniel mixed dog) and I entered the Split Rock River Loop around 12:30pm on Sunday. The ice and mud mix that is so common in the spring time made for a joyous game of trying to not fall down onto our buts. We were successful. Chickadees sang the song of the birds as we passed the frozen falls of the river. I took my Coalatree Jacket off and placed it into my pack. The sun was shining in full glory now. I did not want to break a sweat in the cold forrest.

We stopped for a moment to sit by the falls. The running water poked out from underneath it’s winter bed of ice and snow. The smooth sound of water rolling over the rocks below was an ever pleasant noise; similar to that found in a spa. These are the simple pleasures that inspire me to travel more often. The entire globe is FULL of these special spots of tranquility and harmony. “Gotta Catch Em All”

After spending some time reflecting on the past and fantasizing about the future, I had returned to the present moment. Living life one task at a time. My Gemini mind likes to shuffle multiple projects all at once. In the woods, I can focus on one task at a time. The objective is to hike to the next spot. Simple. Of course the occasional moss formation, wild animal, or rock formation will catch my eye. I do of course pay these natural sights attention because they are these unique expressions of our planet that we just cannot replicate in the city.

To those who did not know (I was once there myself), Split Rock is actually a rock formation found along the Split Rock River. The historic lighthouse found along the North Shore highway is recognized by every Minnesotan’s mind. However, the rock formation that it is named for intrigues me much more. Out of the deep river canyon stands two elongated stone rocks. Standing tall as if reaching for the stars, these two natural formations stand as tribute to our last ice age.

Lloyd Fisher Photo, Split rock, lighthouse, river, minnesota, mn, explore, granite gear, tulip the trail dog, superior hiking trail, sht

Tulip and I enjoyed some grounding, reading, and a small snack of goji berries on a sunny patch of rock before heading back into the modern world. I consider this time my “Recharging time” as the senses are given a chance to rest. A moment away from the artificial lights, continuous sounds of our industrialized world, and any gossip or drama from other beings. Yes, this is the time that makes me remember who I am and why I enjoy nature so much. It is a return to source. A return to the self.

I see so many in our modern world who chase a dream because it is what somebody else wants them to do. This is not the way. We are all individuals. We each have an individual mission here on Earth. Should we appreciate those who only want the best for us? Yes. Should we do everything they recommend we do? NO! Every person on earth is their own person free to make their own decisions. If we are truly going to live in harmony with one another we must first live in harmony with ourselves. How do we do this? Start with nature.

Returning to the source dose not have to carry the stigma of “Tree Hugger” or “Buddhist Monk”. Our natural source IS nature. This is the environment of which all life has originated. Abundance is our natural state of being; nature proves this. Look at the vast landscape of trees, rich with life. A self-sustainable ecosystem giving no more than it takes.

If we are not careful we can be absorbed wholeheartedly into the western way of thinking. Always chasing more. Valuing profits over the environment; profits over people. This is simply a sickness of the mind. A sickness that can be cured with a re-connection to source. SO.. get your children off of the I-pad and bring them for an I-hike. Make a game of picking up trash out of the Forrest. Whoever finds the most litter gets to pick whats for dinner! Be creative. See new sights.

Goal zero, Granite Gear, Nomad 7 plus, Crown two 2 60, Lloyd Fisher Photo, Split Rock river loop

Nature can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. I am personally working on building the most sustainable, rugged, and practical kit the outdoor industry can provide. With the Crown2 60 litter ultra light backpack from Granite Gear as a base I am off to a great start! The Goal Zero Nomad 7 plus is a solar charger that I can use to fill up my devices on and off the trail. With these top notch items I am well on my way to living with the planet in a healthy give and take relationship.

Happy Trails – Lloyd Joseph Fisher

The Year of Heavenly Glory

The Year of Heavenly Glory

Article and Photography by Lloyd J. Fisher

Full Moon, love, nature, photography, duluth, Lake Superior ,Duluth Minnesota, Woke, Lloyd Fisher Photo

The Full Moon of January 1st, 2018 shines new light over Duluth.

How sweet it is to have lived another year. The past is gone. Our choices have been made. We learn and accept full responsibility. I have gone through several transformations in 2017. Many doors were opened, and several closed. I respect myself enough to say that I appreciate where I am today. It is a direct result of my previous actions. Short term gains have been set aside in order to make room for long term goals. New skills have been learned; new talents acquired.

LEARNING TO FEEL OUR WAY THROUGH LIFE

Take a moment to experience this brief 30 second message from Bruce Lee. He reminds us to FEEL with our hearts, TRUST our gut, and EXPRESS with our soul. Along my personal journey I have found that having faith in our own higher self, when put to practice, will guide us down the righteous path to true prosperity. Acknowledging and respecting the wants and needs of your inner child is EVERYTHING when we speak of fulfilling your innermost desires.

Remember, these lessons apply to your inner conflicts as well as your public relations. We are all one.

Do not allow your mind to distract you from the big picture. This is a shift in consciousness I am embracing fully in the new Gregorian year. Along my own journey I have found myself stuck in the selfish cycle of chasing after the most SUPREME mechanically advanced gear.  There are so many voices telling you what to buy or invest into in this western world. It is all too easy to lose yourself  in a desired state of complacent normalcy. Previously I have spent the majority of my sunsets studying the technical details my craft rather than practicing it. Of course it is wise to learn and acquire the technical ability to effectively execute on your talent. However, we must practice the knowledge we learn. If not, we risk becoming a useless data bank in the flesh.

What is the best camera I can buy?

“The best camera, is the one that you have with you!” – Chase Jarvis

“Should I invest in Sony or Nikon?” “Nikon or Canon?” “Fuji film has travel sized cameras right?” This kind of self talk lasted for at least a year before purchasing my Sony A7ii. I’ll be the first to admit that I have traded early mornings basking in the sunrise’s heavenly glory for late nights watching post-processing and lens reviews. A total creativity BLOCK. Don’t get me wrong. It is all in good company to be up to date on your industry. The more knowledgeable you are of your craft will allow you to execute new skills and strategies while out in the field. Remember, we must EXERCISE our talents. If we are not progressing, then we may in fact encounter degradation . So please, do not pull your hair out over which sensor has a “crispier image”. It is all too easy to drift down the rabbit hole of owning the BEST tools. Consider this in all aspects of your life. Do you really need the 2018 model? Your 2016 works like a charm. Ask yourself, “what am I even using this for?”

Canon l lense lloyd fisher photo

The truth of the matter is that it is all too easy to judge yourself by your possessions. So often we supplement new gizmos, cars, and gadgets into our lives as a sub-conscious cry from the wounded inner child. Believe it or not, but your life might just be far more enjoyable if you were not weighed down by so much STUFF. Consider the possibility that it is better to have a few GREAT toys, rather than several mediocre ones. You be the judge. Just remember to always get out and exercise your talents and abilities. Use it or lose it baby.

The year of heavenly glory full moon lloyd fisher photo

A SHORT LESSON IN VALUE

“Know what it is that you are looking for, or somebody else will find it for you.” – Lloyd J. Fisher

My childhood fantasy of becoming a race car driver was put on the back burner this year as I swapped my 2002 Subaru WRX for a 1999 Honda CR-V. Humbled by the initial loss in horsepower, the overall utilitarianism and functionality that this 20th century dime piece provides is remarkable. Instead of moving as quickly and proficiently as legally possible from one location to the next, I am now more methodical, mature, and conscious in nature during my commutes. This internal and external shift has assisted me by reassessing my core values. Taking a look at each and every way that I am living my life in order to audit what is still serving me. Elimination of that which weighs me down is currently in effect.

There are several different ways in which value that can be perceived in our material possessions. In my case, the cost-effective, reliable and practical SUV currently brings more value to my life than any sporty, quick, and loud rally car ever could. I most definitely had attached my ego to the previous automobile. It’s ability to take corners quickly, get up to speed swiftly, and look good doing it was a sub-conscious attachment to my youthful ego. Yes I appreciate the control that these automobiles provide. However, I am now more concerned with getting from A to B safely; rather than spending thousands to have a #SickTrackDayBro.

Subaru Impreza WRX 2002 Lloyd Fisher Photo The year of heavenly glory

The new sub 21st century mechanical Japanese wagon is ideal for executing on more road trips! Travel is what brings me the most joy at this stage in my life. Seeing new places and meeting new people is so vitally important when we speak of opening our minds to the possibilities available to us within our own lives. So many Americans lock themselves into a #Bazillion and 1/2 payments on multiple cars, houses, luxury services, appliances, gadgets, clothing items, and of course credit cards. Our western culture is quite literally run on the idea of selling you the “good life”. Know what it is that you are looking for, or somebody else will find it for you.

1999 Honda CR-V Suv 5-speed manual winter black lloyd fisher photo

If I can give my readers any actionable advice from this post is it this: Truly sit yourself down with a paper and pencil and write out what you think your needs are. How many things on your list are still serving you? If they are, great! Enjoy their presence in your life. If not, then super! Time to make some craigslist posts. Ya dig? At the end of the day, we live in the most technically advanced society ever historically recorded by modern man. Learn to use your possessions to build a better life for yourself and others, rather than granting the manufactures of these unnecessary purchases a better ROI (return on investment). Being weighed down by objects and services that simply mask our unresolved inner emotions is no fun, Frank.

What are you making room for in this new year? Let me know in the comments below!

May we all bask in the heavenly glory of this new year of 2018.