Jerry Kobalenko: Searching for ghosts on Ellesmere Island (Episode #4)


Jerry Kobaleko (Photo found at Jerry Kobalenko is one of Canada’s most experienced High Arctic travelers. He’s the author of The Horizontal Everest, and Arctic Eden. His writing and photography have appeared in National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, Canadian Geographic and Time.  He’s also the editor of ExplorersWeb. He was awarded the Polar Medal in 2018 by Canada’s...

Hands up everyone who does this


It’s been brought to my attention that I might be somewhat strange. Surely I’m not the only one who rotates their bookmarks? It’s not as though I collect bookmarks. I’m not a member of the International Friends of Bookmarks, either (yes, that’s a real thing). I don’t care what I mark my books with when I travel: an old envelope, the stub of a boarding pass, abandoned receipts. I’m unapologetic...

What do you think of the ‘deep state’?


A friend asked me this week, “What do you think of the ‘deep state’? The short answer is, “I try not to.” Mostly because it has no meaningful impact on my life. ‘Deep state’ is the idea that some sort of shadow government made up of rich, powerful actors wields power, either within or behind the legitimately elected government. The Bilderberg Group, the Illuminati, the Freemasons, the CIA and the...

Words That Piss Me Off: The Sequel


I never would have guessed when I sat down to write Words That Piss Me Off in March 2010 that I was creating a smash hit. Many of the words and phrases which sparked that furious rant were irritating proliferations of business English that made their way into daily use. Don’t get me wrong, they still piss me off. But more recent offences to the English language have their origins in an even more...

Planet of the Humans


Let’s talk about Planet of the Humans, the controversial new documentary produced by Michael Moore. I figure we might as well talk about something, since travel’s off the cards for the foreseeable future. Rather than vanish into sedentary obscurity, I decided to use the blog to write about whatever crosses my desk: current reading, current events, the distant past, or the afterglow of an...

Death on a Dinner Plate


Three days into this journey, I began to grow seriously concerned about the structural integrity of my waistband. And the day after that, I resigned myself to a bleak future of dieting, possibly culminating in liposuction. And all this from letting my wife plan the trip. You see, travel in Japan is all about food. Where you or I might plan a trip around historical sites, or art collections, or...

My Dad Died 10 Years Ago Today


I still remember the moment I knew — really knew — that my dad was dying. I was in a cheap hotel in Bangkok, lying there awake trying to sleep. I’d received an email that day which said my dad had been ill, and they were sending him for some tests. One of the last lines read, “You should probably come home.” There was nothing in the message to cause any more alarm than that. But when night came...

Belém — Touching Portugal’s Globe Spanning Past


I recently spent a couple of Lisbon days exploring one of the cities most interesting suburbs. This is probably the best section of the city in which to get in touch with Portugal’s glorious past. It was from Belém that the explorer Vasco da Gama set out to India by sea in 1497. When he returned the following year with a boatload of valuable spices — having circumnavigated Africa for the first...

Bringing Dreams to Physical Reality — The Magic of Print


I got a sneak peak inside a crucial part of the publishing industry last week when I was given the opportunity to tour Lowe-Martin’s Ottawa St. Laurent facility — where Outpost and other fine magazines are printed. These guys work some serious magic when it comes to transforming the stories I write from ether into substance, putting them directly into the hands of my readers. Thanks very much to...

Exploring Old Haunts


My visit to Canada is drawing to a close. I spent the past weekend exploring old haunts with my friend Rob Wilson, partner in crime from many teenage exploits and camping expeditions. The weekend got off to a great start when we drove out to his old farmhouse on Buckwheat Road, behind Spencerville, and set out into the woods with camera and tripod to find one of our old campsites. After stepping...

Ryan Murdock

Author of Vagabond Dreams: Road Wisdom from Central America. Host of Personal Landscapes podcast. Editor-at-Large (Europe) for Canada's Outpost magazine. Columnist at The Shift. Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.


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