2013 was a good year and here’s evidence. What a privilage to travel with so many enagaging people! Here’s to more learnin’, travlin’ and smilin’ in 2014!

A few days after the end of 2012, I  boarded a plane to Mexico with one set of clothes, one packraft, and my camera to meet some guys I only knew on the internet. Luc Mehl had conceived a weird triathlon that entailed biking to North America’s 3rd highest peak, Pico de Orizaba, climbing the volcano, biking another few days, ditching the bikes and  paddling to the ocean. Luc, Doom, Todd Tumolo and I caught a bus out of Mexico City, bought cheap mountain bikes, climbed the peak, ate street tacos, camped in corn fields, and 11 days later, made it to the Gulf.

Orizaba, Mexico Summit to Sea TraverseHike-a-bike to the refugio with Orizaba looming ~5000 ft above Tumolo admires the view from the flanks of Pico de Orizaba Orizaba, Mexico Summit to Sea Traverse Orizaba, Mexico Summit to Sea Traverse Descending into increasingly lush forrest. Roadside camping near Chichiquila JHarris-2013-5740 Todd Tumolo paddles his Alpacka Raft down the Barranca Grande Steve Fassbinder watches Mehl play in the surf Hitchhiking to Veracruz

Kyle Miller and I chased a storm to southern Utah. Fun riding if you don’t mind a few base dings.Kyle Miller desert splitboard touring on Red Mountain, UT JHarris-2013-7732 JHarris-2013-7826

Forrest Shearer and I found a chute on Olympus that probably gets ridden about once a decade.Forrest Shearer climbing Mt Olympus, Utah above smoggy Salt Lake City, Utah JHarris-2013-8703

Then Neil Provo, Michelle Manning, Powderwhores‘ Jonah and Noah Howell, Allison and I traveled via ferry boat and school bus to Holden Village, a mining town turned Lutheran retreat in the Cascade Range. “I had no idea that stuff was up there,” remarked one of Holden’s staff after seeing photos of one of the chutes we’d skied.JHarris-2013-9086 JHarris-2013-9246 Neil Provo dropping into a chute above Holden Village, Cascades, Washington Found decorations at the Holden Village garbage shed. Noah Howell crushing pillows above Holden Village, WA JHarris-2013-2-2 Noah Howell in Holden Village, WA Powderwhores' Jonah Howell portrait Neil Provo riding above Holden Village, Cascades, Washington

Bibi Pekarek, Liz Daley, Maria DeBari, Davide de Masi, and Chipie Windross went to the Italian Dolomites where we celebrated with  Nigronis each night. Skiing in Cortina set my personal record for “craziest lift-accessed chutes.”Sunrise on the Dolomites Liz Daley, Dolomites, Italy Bibi Pekarek drops into Staunies couloir in the Dolomites Bibi Pekarek, Liz Daley and Maria DeBari in Staunies Norde couloir, Italy JHarris-2013-8351

In Chamonix, we were the first to rappel into Cosmiques couloir after a storm. New personal record for “craziest lift-accessed chutes.” Thanks Dave and Dave for leading the charge.Davide de Masi in Chamonix, France JHarris-2013-0206

Liz Daley, Maria deBari, and Bibi Pekarek and I schussed to some huts in France and Switzerland. Probably the first time I skied across international borders.Liz Daley and Bibi Pekarek skinning in Courmayeur, Italy

Liz Daley skins Glacier des Améthystes, Chamonix, France JHarris-2013-3 Liz Daley rides Glacier des Améthystes, Chamonix, France JHarris-2013-1349

 I flew from Geneva to Utah, washed my long undies, then shoved ’em back into a duffel and flew to Mongolia. A group of scientists had converged in Ulaanbaatar for a National Geographic wolverine research expedition. We spent the next 23 days skiing 230 miles through the recently-established Darhad Special Protected Area. I photographed biologists Rebecca Walters, Gregg Treinish, Forrest McCarthy and Jason Wilmot collecting Gulo gulo hair and scat DNA samples.

JHarris-2013-1909 Forrest McCarthy and Gregg Treinish ski down aufeis over a frozen streambed JHarris-2013-5830 JHarris-2013-4786 JHarris-2013-0994 JHarris-2013-4513 JHarris-2013-1456 A young Darhad tribesman drives horses as the group migrates to spring pasture. JHarris-2013-0954 Jason Wilmot and Rebecca Watters hike up valley below Jari Pass JHarris-2013-01758 JHarris-2013-8524

 Back in Utah, we celebrated Jortski. The turnout sure has grown from it’s humble origins a few years ago.JHarris-2013-9321

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 I was pruned after a week we spent “glamping” on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. 

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 Moe Witschard, Forrest McCarthy, Andrew McLean, Mike Fiebig and I walked three mountain passes and paddled three rivers over six days and 100 miles on the move in Wyoming.JHarris-2013-2648 JHarris-2013-1489 JHarris-2013-1571 Forrest stirs the cook pot with a stick JHarris-2013-1628 JHarris-2013-1671 JHarris-2013-2193 JHarris-2013-2201 Fly Amanita mushroom. Both hallucinogenic and toxic, I looked but didnt taste. Forrest McCarthy fills a water container in Thorofare Creek MIke Fiebig paddles past Lupine MIke Fiebig on the South Buffalo Fork

Brendan Leonard had the idea to walk the crest of the Sangre de Cristo range for 100 miles. It was splendid until the Great Colorado Monsoon of 2013 arrived. Then it was very wet.Jim Harris and Brendan Leonard on Cottonwood Peak, Sangre de Cristo range, CO JHarris-2013-5670 Summit register on one of Twin Sister Peaks, Sangre de Cristo mountains, CO JHarris-2013-5095 JHarris-2013-4963 JHarris-2013-5271 JHarris-2013-6194 Brendan Leonard scrutinizes a map of the Sangre de Cristo range JHarris-2013-6310 Bushwack temper tanrum. Brendan Leonard feigns a hissy fit. Frost on the alpine tundra. Brendan Leonard hikes the Phantom Terrace JHarris-2013-6860 JHarris-2013-7460 Brendan Leonard walks the ridgeline above Sand Creek Whitelined sphinx (Hyles lineata) moth on Mountain Thistle (Cirsium scopulorum) JHarris-2013-6253JHarris-2013-8278 Mosca Pass scenery Misty forest downpour JHarris-2013-8393 Brendan Leonard contemplates the downpour JHarris-2013-8101

Back in Utah the mountain biking was prime until it started snowing. JHarris-2013-9114 JHarris-2013-00115 JHarris-2013-00026 JHarris-2013-9139 JHarris-2013-9288 JHarris-2013-9348JHarris-2013-9773-2JHarris-2013-9564 JHarris-2013-9503 JHarris-2013-9701

 In October, I went on another packrafting trip, this time with Chris SolomonForrest, and Scott Schell. Our plans were derailed by the government shutdown and the subsequent closure of the National Parks but we put together a good hike-paddle-hike loop nearby.

Chris Solomon, Forrest McCarthy, and Scott Schell paddle the Green River, Utah



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Ben and I got a few laps in at Alta after the first dump. JHarris-2013-3244

Then my dad and I headed on a backpacking trip to the Dirty Devil River. JHarris-2013-3355

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Back in the mountains, skiing had improved.


I took some dog pictures just because dogs are fun to take photos of. JHarris-2013-2-6 JHarris-2013-4771 JHarris-2013-6169 JHarris-2013-6443

It snowed more, but the avalanche danger notched higher. JHarris-2013-6015 JHarris-2013-5806 JHarris-2013-6106 JHarris-2013-6129

We flew to San Francisco to meet Allison’s family for Thanksgiving. It was a beautiful dawn over the city.


 “Dawn patrols” for a catalog shoot required a few 3am wakeups. Big shout out to coffee.Jon Coppi and Mike Elggren unload skis JHarris-2013-0474 JHarris-2013-8796

Photo John loaned me a Nikon AW1 and I took it out to shoot some low-snow shredding. JHarris-2013-1087 JHarris-2013-1319

We spent Christmas with my folks and they were dog sitting my cousin’s retriever. JHarris-2013-1604 JHarris-2013-1857

And now it’s 2014, there’s snow in the forecast, fresh batteries in the avalanche beacon, a bunch more places to see, people to meet, and photos to take.

“The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.”-John Muir