Tag Archives: Outdoors

AMAZING QUEST ~ INCREDIBLE ACCOMPLISHMENT!!!

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The following excerpts are taken from, “Survivor raises money swimming in 158 Glacier, Waterton lakes”,  by Tristan Scott of the Missoulian

MARK BEST PHOTOMarc Ankenbauer’s aqueous obsession has lured him into the frigid waters of exactly 158 lakes in Glacier and Waterton Lakes National Parks.

MARC SWIMMING2Marc Ankenbauer swims through frigid waters on his quest to plunge into all 168 named lakes in Waterton-Glacier National Parks as part of a 12-year project to raise money for the nonprofit organization Camp Mak-A-Dream, which provides wilderness experiences for children and young adults diagnosed with cancer…

MARC SWIMMINGThere are 168 named lakes in Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park and, having dived into all but 10, this summer Ankenbauer will become the first person known to bathe in them all… Since beginning his project 12 years ago, Ankenbauer, 36, who survived a brief bout with cancer as a teenager, has been raising money for the … Camp Mak-A-Dream’s mission struck a chord with Ankenbauer, who since 2001 has spent his summers working as a backcountry ranger in Glacier Park, and is passionate about outdoor experiences and exploring western Montana’s vast open spaces…

He launched a website, glacierexplorer.com, and created an online donation program, setting an arbitrary goal of raising $5,000. Last week, a donation from a family friend in Cincinnati pushed Ankenbauer past his goal…
imagesCAA2ICVQ34The project also has given Ankenbauer incentive to explore Waterton-Glacier’s 1.2 million acres, and to set out for lakes that most people have never visited. It also entails long, arduous, off-trail hikes, as well as bushwhacking through dense thickets of alder.  “One of the reasons this has taken so long is that it is challenging to access some of these remote spots,” he said. “I bet I have averaged about 20 lakes a year, but last summer I only got seven, and the summer before that I only jumped in 12. But they were a tough, burly 12.”

Images of some of the National Park‘s inhabitants that I think Mark would likely come across &/or see while trekking to his next lake destination in the park.  A few of these encounters would be hair-raising to say the least!!!

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Ankenbauer estimates that half of the lakes require off-trail travel, and their remoteness has offered numerous opportunities to observe wildlife. 

SNYDER LAKECROPPEDAfter jumping into Snyder Lake, a grizzly bear began lumbering toward Ankenbauer and a companion, and once, after hiking 10 miles to

AURICE LAKEAurice Lake, a spooked sow grizzly and her cubs forced Ankenbauer to abort the jump and turn around.  “I’ve jumped into two different lakes that had moose in them at the time,” Ankenbauer said.

FISHERCAP LAKEAll but one of Ankenbauer’s remaining lakes are located in remote and off-the-grid areas, and he’s saving the easiest one for last. He’ll conclude the project with Fishercap, a lake that is about a five-minute walk from the Swiftcurrent Motor Inn in the Many Glacier area.

“I decided to save that for the absolute end so my mom can come and watch,” he said. “So many people have been so incredibly supportive of this project that I owe it to them, especially my family and my wife. I could not have done this without her support and understanding.”

Many of the park’s glacier-fed lakes are a crystalline blue,
JOHNS LAKE BESTbut others, like Johns Lake, are as stagnant as pond scum.  “There are some really rough, rank bodies of water that are named,” he said. “I basically had to lower myself into Johns Lake and hope that I didn’t get too many leeches on me. It’s not all fame and fortune.” 
GREEN LAKEGreen Lake had so little water that Ankenbauer’s swim trunks didn’t get completely wet, even after he lay down in it.

 When the project is finished, Ankenbauer isn’t worried about his life lacking adventure. He’ll continue working for the park, and may return to Antarctica, where he worked this winter as a camp host for scientists and researchers at McMurdo Station. He’ll also spend more time with his wife, who Ankenbauer is living with in Missoula while she completes her nursing degree. The couple will return to East Glacier this summer.

MARC ANKENBAUER2 “I’ve been given one of the greatest luxuries in the world. I get to live in one of the greatest places on Earth,” he said. “I’m not out to conquer some unattainable goal. I’m more like the average, everyday guy adventurer. At times, it has been epically difficult and mentally tedious. I’ve thrashed around in alder thickets for so long that I just had to start laughing. But it has breathed a lot of adventure into my life. It’s a celebration of life.”

http://missoulian.com/lifestyles/hometowns/man-raises-money-by-swimming-in-glacier-and-waterton-parks/article_84ccdd48-8934-11e2-838a-0019bb2963f4.html

 

CANADIAN SHARKS THREATENED PLUS AWESOME VIDEO

Please read, “Help Save Canada‘s Sharks” Posted by staffblogger By Jarrett Corke, Shark Project Coordinator, WWF-Canada May 14, 2012

http://blog.wwf.ca/blog/2012/05/14/dear-general-shark-scientists-of-the-world/?utm_source=panda_mail&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=panda_mail_June_2012

At the end of this topic I’ve included Jonathan Bird‘s video,Shark Biology” (Webisode 45) as I’m utterly amazed to learn so many astonishing facts, as Jonathan swims among the sharks.  What an incredible insight into this endangered species!   This is a 10 minute video and is definitely worth watching – A MUST SEE!!
 - Jonathan swims with blue sharks and tries to pet one – will he get bitten?…
 - an underwater cave hold a deep surprise…
 - Jonathan swims with the largest toother animal on earth, the sperm whale…

       PROTECTING CANADIAN SHARK POPULATIONS

http://www.wwf.ca/conservation/species/sharks/

Most sharks are vulnerable to overexploitation due to their slow growth, late maturity, low reproductive rates, and long life. Globally, sharks…are among the most threatened marine vertebrates on Earth. Large open-water or ‘pelagic’ sharks, such as great whites, are among the most threatened. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species, it is estimated that 60% of pelagic sharks are currently threatened with extinction. As many of these species are wide-ranging top predators, their loss may have far-reaching consequences for marine ecosystems.

Twenty-eight species of shark have been reported in Canadian waters … Close to half of these species are considered to be globally threatened; still most Canadians remain unaware that sharks regularly occur in our waters…

 
 

WHAT ARE THE MAIN THREATS TO SHARKS IN CANADIAN WATERS?

In Canada, unsustainable fishing practices, in particular the unintentional capture of sharks in fisheries targeting tunas, swordfish or groundfish have caused shark populations to drastically decline.

Bycatch - ‘Bycatch’, or the unintentional capture of non-target species in commercial fisheries, is perhaps the single most significant threat to sharks in Canadian waters. Little is known about the distribution of sharks in Canadian waters and ways to minimize the incidence of bycatch and overall shark mortality…

Demand for shark fins - Shark ‘finning’, the removal of only the fins from sharks and dumping the remainder while at sea, is illegal in Canada; however, Canada is importing unsustainable shark products, including fins, for consumption and, globally, the growing trade of shark fins has become a threat to many shark species. The fin trade today is considered to be a primary driver in shark exploitation.

Changes in the marine environment - Destructive fishing activities, marine waste and coastal developments can have serious impacts on marine habitats which sharks depend on. Climate change impacts on the marine ecosystem can also be a cause of concern for sharks, particularly in terms of how population distributions and habitats for sharks, as well as their prey, may be affected.

VIDEO OUTLINE of Jonathan Bird’s, “Blue Sharks“:

Jonathan joins Charlie Donilon on his shark charter boat in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and learns about how shark tagging has shed light on the biology of and behavior of Blue sharks. Tagging has shown that these incredible swimmers actually migrate completely across the Atlantic ocean. Jonathan tries his hand at tagging a shark and then swims with Blue sharks. We also learn that Blue sharks are not nearly as vicious as they have been reputed to be, and the divers are actually able to pet the sharks!