I have already been at Philmont for two months and it’s only just picked up speed.

Around this time at Philmont is a busy time. Friends are reunited since the last time they saw each other in August. Each meal in the base camp dining hall is another chance to see a familiar face or sit and get to know new ones. People get to experience the thrill of a new position in a different department than they’re used to, and suddenly topics on risk management, first aid and policies is fun and exciting simply with a change of scenery and new faces presenting the topics.

Within this amazing machine of “training,” which has been set in motion as early as May 15th, and will conclude shortly after June 8th – all Philmont staff will complete two weeks of training on a variety of topics from customer service to how to camp responsibly following Philmont procedures all while being inspired to be the best at their jobs for the next 90 days.


Coincidentally, Philmont is the only place I have ever experienced a formal management training session.

By June 8th, these 1,130 staff members will all be ready to receive the summer’s first crews of participants ready to hit the trail the following day. Each summer the training sessions are similar: the running around in “free” time between meals or after office hours trying to ready the next day’s materials and presentations never take less time than the year before, but the feelings of pride and accomplishment build each passing day.


Our group of Environmental Educators have been steadily filling their brains with lesson material about subjects such as ecology, astronomy, habitat management and Leave No Trace ethics. Our program is fortunate to have standing ties with professionals from the natural resource field who lecture and demonstrate hands-on lessons for us leading up to our first participants. Just the other day at “work” was the classroom pictured below.


While I’ve been enjoying the mountain rains and chilly mountain air, the E/V Nautilus and Corps of Exploration has begun making a historic passage through the Panama Canal. Going through the canal was streamed live on Nautilus Live  as she enters the Pacific Ocean for the very first time. Check out a great time-lapse of the first lock here.

Two months from now I will be at sea.

Two hours from now I have to be finished packing and getting some sleep in a real bed, before 10 nights sleeping in a tent under the starry skies of God’s Country in the backcountry, continuing to teach others about trail building, place-based education and expedition protocol.


How much of the United States lies below the sea?

Although I was in transit myself yesterday, I have heard from many people they were able to catch 60 Minutes last night and learn about some discoveries E/V Nautilus made in the 2014 expedition season, in the Gulf of Mexico.

Check out the blog piece here written about the identity of an unknown shipwreck which was revealed last summer and featured last night on 60 Minutes.

There’s a great video also as the team views the shipwreck for the first time.

By the way, the answer is half the country lies under the sea AND is unexplored. See NOAA’s detailed explanation of what an exclusive economic zone is and how the US’s zone was established in 1983 by President Ronald Regan.

Hear ye, Hear ye!

Update: 60 Minutes for Sunday, May 10th special information is here!
This post is brought to you by… all the ways E/V Nautilus is in the news right now! Airing tonight on PBS will be a special that was filmed last year on expedition, when a German submarine was investigated as part of Nautilus’s research mission. PBS/NatGeo produced the segment.

NOVA “Nazi Attack on America” tonight at 9/8c

Long before 9/11, a far deadlier, little-known attack from the ocean depths struck our shores, lasting three-and-a-half years and claiming 5,000 lives. Now, famed undersea explorer Bob Ballard, discoverer of the Titanic, investigates the wreck of one of the attack craft, a German submarine that lies at the bottom of the gulf just a few miles off New Orleans.

Posted by PBS on Wednesday, May 6, 2015

In your magazine aisle is a TIME Modern Day Explorer’s Issue which features two of Nautilus’s own – Dr. Bob Ballard and Dr. Katy Croff Bell, for their accomplishments in oceanography, exploration and science.


Photo credit: Susan Poulton, President, Door 44 Digital

Finally, set your TVs for 60 Minutes this Sunday, May 10th, because E/V Nautilus will be featured in a segment there as well!