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Explorer Spotlight: Andrew Slaton

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Name: Andrew Slaton | Age: 34 | Location: Texas/ Wyoming/ and soon to be full-time road tripper :)

What’s your day job?
Commercial/ Editorial Photographer.

What are your favorite things to do outside?
I love making images mostly, but I enjoy almost everything that has to do with the outdoors… like hiking, or trying new things like surfing.

What first drew you to the outdoors?
My family would take camping trips most summers to Colorado. And for me with the mountains, it was love at first sight. I borrowed my dad’s 35mm Canon AE-1 for the first time on a backpacking trip freshman year of high school, and I shot a dozen rolls of film... I’ve never turned back!

What’s your favorite hometown adventure? ...and, almost as important, where’s your favorite spot to get a beer after?
Well, for Dallas (TX), I’d say catching snakes around White Rock Lake! And grabbing a refreshing Community Mosaic IPA at the Lakehouse. For Pinedale (WY)… It’s backpacking in the Winds and kicking up my feet with a Wyoming Pale Ale (WPA) at the Brew Pub in Pinedale.

What’s your essential gear that never gets left at home?
So many things… I probably need to simplify this part of my life… perhaps it would be my wireless shutter release/ intervalometer. Nerd alert.

What’s your favorite trail snack?
Pretzel m&ms, hands down.

Any go-to soundtracks when you’re hitting the road?
Lately, Gregory Alan Isakov, Sufjan Stevens, Gungor, Lucius, or maybe Van Morrison (if my wife’s in control of the iPod). We love music, so it’s always different.

What’s the scariest thing that’s ever happened while you were adventuring? And/or, the funniest?
We were camping at Canyon De Chelly, and a super drunk guy unzipped our tent at 3AM, woke us up, demanding money and food. He was really amped and seemed like he wanted to get violent. I talked him down, but I had my other hand on a large knife… After 10 minutes of telling him that we didn’t have any money or food, he calmed down, apologized, and left. So glad it ended peacefully.

Who’s your number one adventure partner-in-crime? Who inspires you?
My wife, Ellen for sure! I lucked out to find a beautiful and strong woman who loves camping and the outdoors as much as me. She’s a rockstar. Who inspires you? She does. Because she’s triumphed over so much adversity, and she believes in me. That’s freakin' inspiring.

What are your top destinations for adventure travel?
Wind River Range, Teton Park, Big Bend, Lebanon, Washington/ Oregon, the Everglades… ugh… so many! Shall I go on??

What’s on the top of your must-do adventure list right now?
Glacier! I keep planning a trip to Glacier every year, and it keeps falling through… next year!

Show us your most memorable photo, and tell us about it!
So we came up form about zero feet elevation and immediately tried to hike up the Cirque… needless to say we were sore and exhausted after a day of hiking. We camped on Jackass Pass, and awoke with a beautiful reward the next morning. And so a little grace was given… even to the unprepared :)

And last but not least…What’s your personal motto?
We were created to live abundantly… so what are we waiting for?? Let’s go.

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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