Hey there, adventurer :)
I'm 'T.J.' and I'll be your guide.
It's just me here: No big company or investors, no secretary or web designer. Just me... well, me and my trusty van, "Mo." Can't forget about Mo.
Much has changed since I began this project over 8 years ago; and yet, in most ways, nothing has changed. It's still just me and Mo, and I still run it with the same intentions and approach.
For me, this is more than just a business: It's a reflection of my passions and values, and an expression of my personal vision of this special little piece of planet Earth.
I'd love to share it with you.
I create experiences to share my LOVE for movement, adventure, & discovery; for wild places, open spaces, & secluded beauty; for hands-on encounters, out-of-the-ordinary experiences, and journeys of mind & body; for having a breeze on the face, the stars as a ceiling, & the destination unknown.
I craft adventures that reflect my BELIEF that direct experience with nature is good for both the walker & the world; that the views never feel bigger than after some good, old-fashioned hard work, first; that nature cannot be experienced from afar, & experience cannot be flattened onto a screen; that the frenzy of modern life must be balanced with moments of wonder, stillness & surprise.
I am driven by my personal EXPERIENCE that the sincerity, passion, humility & character of a business is at least as important as it's product; that it's better to build one thing really well than a lot of things sort-of well; that what you love, others will too, if you just show them how.
And I run it all on a HOPE to create something not just fun, but meaningful; to not do more, but to do better; to measure my success not by traditional values but by the amount of wisdom, wonder & well-being I can give & receive; and to always stick close to my values, as a person and a business.
I aim to provide not only a great experience for you, but to protect, care for, and give back to this place along the way, a place which has given me so much.
By sharing this place, I aim to deepen our personal connections with the natural world; educate us on our impacts; empower us to be active and responsible caretakers of the natural world; and encourage us to spread the love to the people and places we encounter back home.
As well, I ensure that we actively leave the place better than we found it on each and every tour.
I have spent much of my adult life seeking adventure, movement, connection & clarity in the Great Outdoors. For me, the natural world is both the best playground and the best classroom. It is where I feel most complete, most ready to wrestle with the difficult questions, most aligned with the things I find valuable and meaningful.
My adventuring has taken me from by birthplace in the flatlands of middle America to most every corner of the globe. In the end, I found what I was looking for -- and much I didn't know I was looking for -- right here, at the rising Western edge of Europe, and I created this tiny business to share what I'd discovered.
I have been a wilderness guide and educator for over 8 years. I have professional certifications in Wilderness First Response (First Aid), and in hiking, backpacking, mountaineering, and rock climbing instruction.
I am also the director of outdoor education at a local primary and middle school in the Algarve, where I teach kids every week how to safely, effectively, and joyfully explore the outdoors.
I have spent much of my personal life in wilderness environments, from the high Himalayas to the Andes, Alps, Atlas, and Rockies; from the deserts of the Middle East to the glaciers of Patagonia.