Reflection: Kevin Fedarko
Writer and adventure guide Kevin Fedarko’s lecture was truly moving. I knew going into it that I would enjoy what he had to say — there was no way the story of a through-hike of the Grand Canyon could be boring — but I didn’t realize how engaged I would become.
Early on in his talk, Fedarko shared the story of one of his failures in the Grand Canyon. He had always dreamed of leading white water tours, but he quickly learned that his method of achieving that goal wouldn’t work.
He decided to learn how to operate the boats in one of the hardest areas to navigate, and he stressed to audience members the importance of working their way up. Although it may seem fun to hit the ground running, it’s very unlikely that you will succeed.
As the lecture progressed, Fedarko explained his journey from rowing the trailing boat and being responsible for human waste disposal to hiking the Grand Canyon in both the extreme heat and cold. Along the way, he looked into development proposals that would alter the landscape of the Canyon.
These issues are multifaceted, and there is no one right solution to them, but Fedarko had some interesting insights, especially when it comes to air traffic. After spending weeks in the Canyon, Fedarko noticed that although the location is beautiful and full of biodiversity, the total silence that exists between the river and the rim is perhaps The Grand Canyon’s most valuable resource. Near the end of the hike, helicopters flew overhead constantly, shattering the silence.
Fedarko’s lecture got me excited about spending more time outdoors and getting to experience all the great locations close to campus. It also got me excited for the final APEX Event Series lecture of the fall, happening this Thursday with Glen Velez and Loire Cotler.
- by Billy Clouse, Blogger for A.P.E.X. Events and Editor-in-Chief of Thunderground