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Playing it Safe

Playing it safe. Over the years I’ve learned that my quest for new images has pushed me further and further away from civilization. I always thought I was prepared for anything mother nature could throw at me. However, on my last shoot in Olympic National Park, I quickly learned that situations can change very fast.
My wife and I were shooting along Ruby Beach in Olympic National Park, which is a beach that has some natural sea stacks. I saw what I thought was a great vantage point up on a cliff face. Now being that I turned 50 this year (I still think that I’m 25), I’ll just climb up there and get a shot.
So I packed up my camera and climbed to the top of the cliff face. After shooting, the real fun starts with trying to downclimb. I started climbing down the mountain and realized the right-hand hold which I thought was a solid rock was actually just a rock stuck in the mud. As soon as I put weight on it the rock broke loose, rolled down the hill, and hit me in the face and chest.  Luckily I was able to push the rock away. Unluckily that was after I slid about 30 feet down the mountain on my knees. So now I’m in real trouble. Basically, every handhold would disintegrate as I put weight on it. Finally, I was able to get some help and get off the mountain. 
I assessed my knees and realized they were really torn up. We were in a very remote area about 45 minutes away from any kind of medical aid. Luckily I always carry a small first aid kit in my bag. After cleaning off my legs with seawater (which by the way is probably not a really good thing to do and it really burns) I was able to patch myself up. Luckily it was a lesson learned with minor injuries.
So this whole backstory brings me to the point of this post. Recently I started carrying a ZOLEO emergency satellite communicator with me. Wherever you go, ZOLEO provides SOS alerting with 24/7 monitoring, check-in, and weather forecasts. That’s added security and peace of mind for you, and for everyone waiting at home. We didn’t need to use it, but it was there if we did.
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