The Awakening: Bahamas’ Great Exuma

Emerald Bay GC on Great Exuma. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

There are more than 700 sleepy little islands and cays collectively known as the “Out Islands” of the Bahamas. The “In” islands (though they do not call themselves that) are New Providence Island (Nassau, Paradise Island) and Grand Bahama Island (Freeport). These mega-islands never sleep, and the tourist traffic is constant year-round. The island of […]

The Raven Golf Club at West Virginia’s Snowshoe Mountain Resort

Raven Golf Club Hole 9. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

Thirteen inches of snow has fallen at Snowshoe Mountain Resort since the weekend. Cold as it is, we’re sure to have a white Christmas. Yesterday’s snowfall was the stuff of skiers’ dreams, feather-light powder that makes you feel as if you’re floating down the slope on a cloud. From my desk I can see one […]

Exploring Alaska’s Glacier Country by Small Ship

Alaska: kayaking to glacier. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

  The underwater microphone beneath our skiff picked up the whoosh of bubbles and the sound of whales chattering like children at recess. But we knew the humpbacks circling under us were on serious business—the pursuit of dinner. As if at a conductor’s signal, all sound from the hydrophone ceased and Pavarotti began his solo. […]

Close Encounters in the Galapagos Islands

Galapagos Islands. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

Like most nature lovers, I have dreamed of close encounters with wildlife that don’t make me feel like a stalker. A Dr. Doolittle experience–short on actual conversation, of course, but long on trust and peaceful acceptance. Last spring I found a place where this is a reality–the Galapagos, an isolated 28,000-square-mile archipelago straddling the equator […]

West Virginia’s New River Gorge National River

West Virginia's New River Bridge

If you’re a Baby Boomer (born 1946-1964), mention of the New River brings to mind intense whitewater adventures under Spartan conditions. If you didn’t experience it, you heard about it from friends who rafted or kayaked the Lower New in the 60s and 70s. They talked of paddling Class III-V rapids, eating soggy baloney sandwiches […]

The Calumet Legacy

Courtesy Calumet Farm

When Oxbow scored his gate-to-wire victory in the 2013 Preakness Stakes, it raised hopes throughout the racing world that Lexington’s historic Calumet Farm was making a comeback. In the past, the iconic farm on Versailles Road had fielded more classic race winners than any other farm in Thoroughbred history, including victors in eight Kentucky Derbys, […]

Nature’s Roller Coasters

West Virginia's Gauley River, Pillow Rock. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

Nature makes the best roller coasters. Rafting is wet, wild and exhilarating—and no two rides on a whitewater river are ever the same. Today’s upscale outfitters won’t guarantee that anyone will stay dry—or even stay in the raft—but they do promise indulgences at the end of the day. In the 1970s whitewater rafting was a […]

Australia Wine and Golf

New South Wales Golf Course, hole 5. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

Americans often lump New Zealand and Australia together, even though they are 1,000 miles apart. Both countries are peopled by friendly folk, but they dislike being named in the same breath and are fiercely competitive in the things that count—sports, wine, food and the wow factor of their countries. We flew from Auckland, New Zealand, […]

Delightful Duo–St. Kitts and Nevis

Four Seasons Nevis Hole 9. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

The sky was streaked with the tangerine and lavender of sunset when our plane touched down on St. Kitts. Caught in brilliant silhouette was the volcano on the neighboring island of Nevis. We’d only been in the air 45 minutes from San Juan, Puerto Rico, when the islands appeared–long, skinny St. Kitts looking like a […]

Casa de Campo, Dominican Republic

Teet of the Dog Hole 7. Copyright Donnelle Oxley

I kept my eyes on the ball until it vanished in a flurry of horses’ hooves, swinging mallets and shouting riders. A  whistle signaled the chukker’s end, and I resumed my conversation with the fellow sitting beside me in the stands. “The games are not all that different,” I said, “except for the danger. Golf’s […]