Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Astronaut Photos Inspiring Next Generation of Scientists

Students are using images of Earth taken by astronauts aboard the International Space Station for research projects. Read more about it here.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Jacoby's Restaurants

The family-run Jacoby's Cafe in Melvin, Texas now has a brother in Austin, Jacoby's Restaurant and Mercantile. Comfort food, happy hour, and a view of the Colorado River. Read more here.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Sea Turtle Trivia

Check out twenty things you might not know about sea turtles in this piece for Mental Floss.

Photo courtesy Fernando Bretos, The Ocean Foundation.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Studying the Immune System in Space

An investigation headed to the International Space Station will learn more about the cells of our immune systems, helping keep astronauts healthier - and folks on Earth, too. Read more here.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Investigating a muder -- of an endangered wolf

US Fish and Wildlife law enforcement officials are investigating the shooting of an endangered wolf, an alpha female, in Washington state. Conservation groups have offered $15,000 in reward money for tips leading to catching the perp. Read more in Men's Journal online.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Volunteer Diving

Combine awesome diving with volunteering for research and conservation projects - everyone wins, including the ocean. Read more in my article for Alert Diver.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Sacred Water

Many travelers call Semuc Champey, tranquil pools above a raging river in the wilds of Guatemala, the most beautiful place in the country. Definitely worth the difficult journey to get there. Read more here.
Credit: Holley Gaskill

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Oil & Gas and Wildlife

We can have both, but striking that balance won't be easy. Read my article in UTLaw Magazine about the challenges to air quality and endangered species from increased production. Beautiful illustrations by Pam Wishbow, too.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Texas Rocks Christmas Bird Count

I went out to Hyatt Lost Pines for last year's Christmas Bird Count and related activities. Here's the story in Texas Co-op Power Magazine so you can plan to participate in one of this year's Texas events. It's fun and contributes to conservation science.

Texas Book Festival

I signed copies of A Worldwide Travel Guide to Sea Turtles at the Texas Book Festival today, and will be back in the TAMU Press tent tomorrow from 1-3 to do the same. Interesting observation: almost all the young girls (middle school age) that passed through the tent today were drawn to the cover.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Ten Reasons to Visit South Africa

Incredible diving, wildlife watching, scenery, wine, and more - ten of the many reasons to visit South Africa, my piece for Sport Diver magazine.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center

Just outside Fort Davis, this place offers nice hiking, interesting geology, wildlife-watching, and beautiful scenery and can be enjoyed year round. I wrote about my latest visit for Texas Highways. Read more here.

A Martindale Weekend

Tiny Martindale, Texas, just down the road from San Marcos, is a great place to spend a relaxing weekend. Details in the piece I wrote for Texas Highways.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Wonders of Nature

Ten of the most amazing animal antics on the planet. Learn more in my piece for Men's Journal online.
Credit: Jaco Powell,  www.kalaharisafari.com

Friday, September 5, 2014

Climbing for a Cause

Four guys in Guatemala will climb 37 volcanoes in 27 days starting Dec 31, raising money for four different charities in the country. Read how you can help, or even participate, in my story on Men's Journal online.
Photo: Nico Marceca

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Calling Citizen Scientists

Scientists need help classifying high-definition images of Earth at night taken by astronauts on the International Space Station. Information in the photos could help save energy (and stargazing!), contribute to better human health and safety and improve our understanding of atmospheric chemistry. Find out more in my article on the NASA website.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Snorkeling Hot Spots

I compiled this list of 13 of the best places in the world to mingle with the underwater life for Men's Journal. Add them to your bucket list!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Favorite places

Texas Highways asked some of its writers, including lucky me, to talk about their favorite places. Mine was the Tarpon Inn in Port Aransas, a great place to laze away a summer weekend.

Eight Extraordinary Texans

I had the privilege of interviewing these eight Texans for Texas Highways' 2014 Extraordinary Texans feature. Their stories are inspiring - read more here.

Kayaking the Colorado

The Colorado River around the Hyatt Lost Pines Resort and LCRA's McKinney Roughs makes a nice, easy paddle. Read about my experience in the latest issue of Texas Highways.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Fun Facts about Sharks

I'm doing my part to improve the undeserved bad reputation of sharks. Here are nine facts about these amazing animals that you probably didn't know, published on Mental Floss.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Diving for lobsters, and dollars

Celebrate the spiny lobster mini-season in Florida at Lauderdale-by-the-Sea's BugFest. Divers can collect up to 12 lobsters per day and compete for prizes, plus enjoy other dive-related events. Read more in my piece for Men's Journal online.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Big Bend, the Ranch

Big Bend National Park is one of my favorite places in the world - big, wild, and beautiful. Its next-door neighbor, Big Bend Ranch State Park, is all of that and even less -- less crowded, that is. Read more in my piece for Men's Journal.

The iconic coonskin cap

The gift shop at the Alamo sells some 15,000 coonskin caps each year. Did Davy Crockett really wear one there? Find out in my piece for Texas Highways.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Students in Space

Or at least their research. Through the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program, dozens of middle and high school students have experiments on the International Space Station. Read about the latest set of experiments selected for flight in my piece for the NASA website.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Cool stuff from the space station robot

Robotic technology developed for the International Space Station inspires spin-offs to help people on Earth. Read about it in my piece for NASA's website.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

More fish, or just more fish in one place?

An in-depth study of artificial reefs in the Gulf of Mexico seeks to settle a long-running debate about these structures -- do they increase marine life or merely concentrate it? Read more about it in my piece for the June issue of Texas Parks & Wildlife Magazine.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Wolves and Moose on Isle Royale

Scientists debate whether to intervene as the wolf population in Isle Royale National Park declines and moose numbers rise. Read more in my piece for Men's Journal online.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Diagnosing infectious diseases using technology from space

Research on the International Space Station contributed to development of a medical testing device that could save lives in remote parts of the planet. Read my article about it on the NASA website.

Earth microbes could invade Mars

When humans travel to Mars, we'll have to be careful not to take unwelcome stowaways along. A piece I wrote for NASA on what scientists are doing about it.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Painting Penquins

Continuing on the art and nature theme, you can pick up a painting by a penguin as a souvenir of Moody Gardens. The penguins enjoy painting. Read more about it in this piece from the latest issue of Texas Highways.

Helping Galveston Bay, one watercolor at a time

The Artist Boat experience combines kayaking and art, and benefits the greater Galveston Bay. Read more in my piece for Texas Highways.

Restoration based on science

Based on discussion at the State of the Gulf of Mexico Summit, I wrote this piece about the importance of using science to guide post-BP oil spill restoration efforts.

Credit: Erika Nortemann for The Nature Conservancy

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Summer in Texas

Making summer plans in Texas? Start with the 11 activities in my latest piece for Texas Highways, Best Summer Ever.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Easiest Crossing to Mexico

An official border crossing has re-opened between Big Bend National Park and Boquillas del Carmen, Mexico. It's an easy trip across the river for a day of fun and relaxation, and you'll be boosting the local economy as well. Read more in my piece for the Men's Journal website.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Fly a 747

A simulator, that is. British Airways offers public times in its real flight simulators. Read the piece I wrote for Men's Journal about flying one here.

Following the paw prints of a lone wolf

 A collared male wolf known as OR7 traveled more than 1,200 miles across Oregon and into California before settling down. Now a group of outdoor adventurers, educators, and filmakers are going to retrace his steps. Find out how to follow along in my piece for Men's Journal.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

The British High Life

A country day at Petworth House, offered through the Corinthia Hotel London, is a chance to play English Lord for a day. Read my piece about it on the Men's Journal website.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Ziplining by the light of the moon

Something a bit different: full moon zipline adventures at Cypress Valley. My piece in the latest issue of Texas Highways.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Worldwide Travel Guide to Sea Turtles

Sea turtle conservation projects around the planet rely on volunteers and travelers for support. You can have an incredible experience and help save an endangered species as well! This guide, which I wrote with sea turtle expert Wallace J. Nichols and eco-travel expert Brad Nahill, will help you find responsible, sustainable projects to visit. Available soon from TAMU Press. (More info on amazon)

Cycling and Caffeine

Touring Guatemala's scenic coffee farms by bicycle, the adventuresome traveler's alternative to wine tours. My piece on Men's Journal online.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

South Africa's Cape Winelands

Prettier, more exotic, and less expensive than Napa - and the wine's just as good. Plenty of reasons to visit the Stellenbosch area near Cape Town, South Africa. Read more in my piece for Men's Journal online.

Exploring the Negev desert

Dramatic landscapes, exotic wildlife, and ancient culture make Israel's Negev desert a great adventure destination. My piece for Men's Journal online.

A litte-known Gulf of Mexico hero

Former Corpus Christi Caller-Times publisher Ed Harte was instrumental in the establishment of Padre Island National Seashore and Mustang Island State Park, and founded the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University Corpus Christi. Read more about him in my piece for Texas Co-op Power Magazine.