2020 Conference Set

Mark your calendars for the 2020 conference of Rocky Mountain Outdoor Writers and Photographers – October 5 to 8 – headquartering in Alamogordo, New Mexico. That’s Sunday through Thursday night.

Soaptree Yucca along a dune ridge at White Sands National Monument.
© William Horton

Why Alamogordo? Mainly because it’s the closest place to some of the most scenic and fascinating destinations in southern New Mexico.

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Making Water Safe to Drink

By Peter Kummerfeldt

I often hear two statements made regarding drinking water from outdoor sources. Some claim “I never treat the water I drink in the outdoors” while others say “I never drink the water because it’s got bugs in it.” In the first instance not treating water increases the risk of gastrointestinal illness and in the second instance not knowing how to make the water safe to drink dramatically increases the risk of dehydration and the many other problems associated with becoming dehydrated in the field. 

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The Legend of El Patron

Book Review by Barb  Laine

This is a charming, entertaining, and educational little book, written by RMOWP member Virginia Parker Staat. It brought both tears and chuckles – what more can a reader ask? Although written for children eight to 14, it’s a lovely story for all ages. It’s also a true story, and includes delightful illustrations by Andy Ramon.

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Cold Challenges

By Peter Kummerfeldt

The challenges of functioning effectively – and safely, in a cold environment are directly related to your ability to protect yourself from the ambient temperature, precipitation and wind. While accurate numbers are difficult to come by, it is estimated that about 600 people die each year from accidental hypothermia – many of these, about 50%, are elderly. As with heat challenges, the emphasis needs to be an awareness of the environmental threats, on early recognition of what is happening, minimizing the risk and then on effective treatment of hypothermia should it occur.

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Decision Time

By President Kent Taylor

Big Thompson River flowing through Moraine Park.
© Kent Taylor, 2007 RMOWP Photo Workshop

One of the great opportunities of the RMOWP organization through the years has been the annual photo workshop. This long-standing summer ritual has provided first-class, professional instruction in nature photography for the many participants who signed up and showed up, wanting to improve their skills in the beauty of Rocky Mountain National Park. Most recently, coordinator Nic Showalter and instructors Jared Gricoskie and Fred Lord have for the past 11 years created a remarkable learning experience and contribution to the field of photography. Individuals from several states across the country have taken part. It has been a good run indeed. 

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Near Misses

By Peter Kummerfeldt

There have been times in my life, and I suspect in yours, that something has happened where your life was placed in danger but you managed to avoid a catastrophe by sheer luck. These are the “near misses” in our lives that we all experience from time to time. I suspect that for every accident that happens there are probably dozens, if not hundreds, maybe thousands, of “near misses.” Situations that we seldom hear about, but situations that we could learn from if we were made aware of the details.

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RMOWP 46th Annual Conference is Calling…

Morning in the Park © T. Guthrie
“Morning in the park” © Terry Guthrie – 1st Place Image from last Conf., Photo Contest 2009

Where:  Estes Park, Colorado (elevation about 7,500 feet)
When:  Monday through Thursday, September 9-12
Why:   Rocky Mountain National Park
Headquarters:800 Moraine Avenue Event Center at Trout Haven Resorts, just outside the Beaver Meadows entrance to the park

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Member News

RMOWP welcomes new member Randy Watkins of Cushing, Oklahoma. A photographer, lecturer, and artist, Randy is a native Oklahoman, having been born in Stillwater, according to his website. 
About himself, Randy writes, “Something in my being finds Oklahoma nature and its myriad forms and textures absolutely enthralling. Oklahoma’s land, water, the astonishing variety of cloud shapes and the play of light on them all, in these I sense a peculiar and profound beauty… This is my art, this is my land and people. I wish to share it with you.” 
To see some of Randy’s photography visit his website, www.randywatkinsphotography.com.

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Ron Belak Publishes Book

Ron Belak, RMOWP member from Evergreen, Colorado, has announced the recent publication of his book, Fly Fishing Colorado’s Backcountry.

The book is a collection of articles that originally appeared in Colorado Outdoorsmagazine, the official publication of Colorado Parks and Wildlife, and Ron tells us that all the essays in this how-to book were updated in 2018. Although aimed primarily at backcountry anglers in Colorado, he says that over half the essays are relevant to fly fishing for trout anywhere. 

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