davesage01I grew up surrounded by stories of adventure. My father and mother traveled and hunted all over the world in the 1930’s. I heard accounts of stalking wounded lions in the brush of trackless East Africa; of fending off pirates on the Yangtze River as they made their way into western China; of surviving an elephant stampede in Southeast Asia; of taking pack trains deep into the Yukon wilderness. An avid reader at an early age, I devoured every book I could find about hunting and the wild.

Becoming bored with the practice of law, my father spent the last 18 years of his life as a rancher in northern Wyoming. What could have been better for me! I learned to ride and to shoot; I learned about camping and fishing. In my early 20’s, my father and I were invited by the Crow Indians to join a buffalo hunt. It took place on 25,000 acres atop the Big Horn Mountains. Except for pickup trucks and modern rifles, it was an experience right out of the early 1800’s!

Although my father’s early death closed the door on a ranching career, I was still drawn to the out doors and my wife and I spent nearly 30 years raising our family in Vail, Colorado. We began to have our own adventures: long backpack trips into the mountains of Colorado and Wyoming, float trips in Colorado’s Gunnison Gorge fly fishing for rainbow trout, back country skiing during the winters. We experienced many of nature’s tests: storms and lightening, blizzards with whiteouts.

Further afield, we helped to build a children’s hospital in Tanzania and climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro...several times. There was hiking in Switzerland, diving in the Cayman Islands, and helicopter skiing in Canada. We got to see the lions, elephants, rhinos, zebra, warthogs and Cape buffalo that I read about and imagined as a child.

When we set out on a trip these days to fly fish, camp, or travel, we always remark that we are off on another adventure. When I tell a new story, it is always an adventure because I do not know how it will turn out, but surely the seeds have sown somewhere in the past!