to Nov 17

Nature Journaling: Learn the art of seeing and recording the world around you

Friday, November 15 – 5 pm to 7 pm in the Tumamoc Library

Saturday, November 16 – 9 am to 3 pm at Tumamoc Hill

Sunday, November 17 – 9 am to 3 pm at Tumamoc Hill

$145 per person

Keeping a nature journal can both deepen your connections to the natural world and help you learn more about it. Neither science education nor art training is needed—you will develop the skills of a naturalist and a field sketch-artist along the way.

This 3-session class will introduce the tools and processes of keeping a nature journal, with instructor Roseann Hanson and guest instructor Paul Mirocha.

“Your observations, questions, and reflections will enrich your experiences and develop gratitude, reverence, and the skills of a naturalist . . . If you train your mind to see deeply and with intentional curiosity . . . the world will open before you.” - John Muir Laws, artist, naturalist, and author

In this class we will learn how to practice “intentional curiosity” as the core of nature journaling: to ask questions, to dig deeper, to focus our minds both intently and intentionally.

The class will include:

The nuts-and-bolts of journal-keeping (paper and ink types, archival systems, how to make entries that you can refer to later, laying out pages, prompts to jump-start observations, and tips on researching science questions sparked by your observations).

Easy tips that enable anyone to get started sketching and painting. Roseann will help free you from your inner critic and start sketching and painting. Art in a nature journal is not only lovely to see, but an important component of your skillset because the very act of drawing and painting something from life involves incredibly intense observation. Your brain is wholly occupied by only that thing you are observing and drawing—it is a kind of meditation that results in new insights, deeper understanding, and even reverence and gratitude.

Instructor Roseann Hanson, who has been keeping a nature journal for more than 30 years, will be your guide on the journey to becoming a naturalist, nature journalist, and artist.


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to Nov 16

Custom Training Weekends

  • 45 miles southwest of Tucson, AZ Tucson, AZ United States (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Exploring Overland offers custom training weekends—with no more than six people per weekend. In 2019 these weekends will be made available as enquiries are made. You pick the modules you are interested in, and the number of days of training desired. Modules include:

  • Basic off-pavement driving skills (how four-wheel-drive systems work; how to read terrain; optimizing gearing and traction in all conditions)Vehicle preparation, maintenance, and safety for extended overland travel;

  • Elements of recovery: use of sand mats; Hi-Lift jack use; assisted recovery (using a second vehicle) ;

  • Basic winching (for someone with no or very little hands-on winching experience);

  • Advanced winching (double- and triple-line pulls; redirected pulls);

  • Advanced driving skills (soft terrain; off-camber situations; failed hill climbs; steep descents);

  • Other requests

Dates ranges where trainings are available are:

January 1, 2019 through April 30, 2019

November 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019

We offer options with breakfast and dinner included, or no meals included.

Training is either at our Ravenrock desert camp (southern Arizona, 45 miles southwest of Tucson) with some modules taught in the backcountry with 1-2 nights off property camping; or at a place of your choosing, provided we can access adequate training trails and areas.

The cost is $400 per day per person for totally custom training, and you can choose any number of days (we will consult with you based on your curriculum desires if it’s enough time). Meals would be an additional $50 per person per day including nice wine and beer.

For a couple, who travel together and are learning together, we would offer a 25% discount on the training fee  (not including the food).

If you are interested, please send us an email and we’ll take it from there!

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to Dec 15

Writing the Lives of the Sonoran Desert: Exploring nature with words

R and J Hanson by Gary Haynes Tanzania closeup .jpg

Friday, December 13 – 5 pm to 7 pm in the Tumamoc Library

Saturday, December 14 – 9 am to 3 pm at Tumamoc Hill

Sunday, December 15 – 9 am to 3 pm at Tumamoc Hill

$145 per person

In this class you will learn to explore nature with words, from poetry to fiction to science writing. You will learn to participate in nature fully and honestly, as well as to observe, record, and express nature in writing, without “purple prose.”

Nature writers Jonathan and Roseann Hanson will share with you their “secret” for a daily dose of wildness, along with a simple process of recording what you observe accurately, of researching facts and details, and then potentially producing an article or essay for personal enjoyment or publication.

The class will include:

Prior to the workshop: The Hansons will share a suggested reading list and a few easy assignments to give you content to bring to the first class.

On Friday evening in the beautiful Desert Laboratory library, which resonates with over a century of powerful words about nature (it is the birthplace of the field of ecology and the venerable journal Ecology), Jonathan and Roseann will introduce types of writing and share samples to discuss:

- Nature writing (more poetic writing; examples of writers: Terry Tempest Williams, Gary Snyder)

- Natural history writing (combining science with creative prose; examples of writers: Gary Paul Nabhan, Robert Michael Pyle, Ann Zwinger, Pete Dunne)

- Interpretive writing (careful interpretation of science-based facts into interesting writing for very general use)

- Or a combination of all three, such as Diane Ackerman’s Natural History of the Senses.

On Saturday and Sunday the class will spend time exploring Tumamoc Hill and engaging with its wildness through writing exercises. Bring a lunch each day to enjoy in the Sonoran Plant garden courtyard. Throughout the weekend we’ll share writing, and discuss ways to overcome common challenges such as overly “purple” prose or writer’s block.

By the end of class, you will come away with a new outlook on nature writing, along with new skills. Along the way the Hansons will challenge your perception of nature and your role in it—and spark your creative process.


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to May 19

Overland Expo 2019 WEST

  • Fort Tuthill County Park (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Jonathan and Roseann will be be teaching courses on overland driving skills and art journaling for outdoor adventurers at Overland Expo 2019 WEST. Overland Experience ticket required to participate in these premium classes.

Fort Tuthill County Park, Flagstaff, Arizona - USA

For more information, please see

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to Jul 29

Continental Divide Journey X4 2016

Exclusive chance to join RawHyde Adventures and Exploring Overland on an epic journey along the Continental Divide, from New Mexico to Montana—nearly 2000 miles of the continent's most spectacular landscapes, history, and culture. See our Explore photo essay here. Taking reservations now. We have space for limited vehicles. Price will be approx. $6998 per vehicle / up to two occupants. Contact us now.

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to Feb 1

Tanzania – Unique self-drive in classic northern circuit

HERE IS YOUR CHANCE to experience Africa the way you've always dreamed. DRIVE your own Land Rover Defender 110 through the legendary northern circuit in Tanzania: Serengeti. Ngorongoro Crater. Maasailand. Olduvai Gorge. Tarangire. Lake Manyara. Hunter-gather cultures. The Big Five. See it all in 10 spectacular days.

ENJOY the ease and comfort of small, private tented camps, evening "sundowners" as the sun sinks over the Great Rift Valley, delicious hot meals, morning game drives and breakfast in the bush. We provide a support vehicle and local guide. You experience the true adventure and wonder of Africa behind the wheel of your own vehicle, not squashed into a mini-van with ten other people.

Space for six lucky people only (three Land Rovers available).  

$6,998 per person for this exclusive opportunity. Now taking deposits.

CONTACT US FOR DETAILS –space is very limited and will fill quickly.

Our adventure begins and ends in Arusha, Tanzania. Your hosts and leaders will be Roseann and Jonathan Hanson. Our Tanzania partners are Hagai and Emmanuel Kissila and Erika and Paul Sweet (Shaw Safaris).

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