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Eric Rubens  You were born to stand out 🌎 Southern California 🌴 Chief of Partnerships @Explorest

One of the most magical places I’ve been in this world, full of life in the lagoon and color everywhere. The rising sun brings energy to the reef each morning and you can’t help but feel a rush as you start the day. After visiting last year, I made my way back to @conradboraboranui for some more time in the water. The diversity of islands in French Polynesia is something that has always drawn my interest and life in the ocean is so beautiful in a heathy ecosystem. From the orange glow that starts the day to the moment the sun dips into the horizon, it’s hard to not fall in love with the beauty this island glows with.

Early morning, somewhere between a dream and reality. It always feels like the ocean has a natural pull on me. I’ve spent my fair share of days staring out at the horizon to clear my head. In moments of pure ease and relaxation, where does your mind drift? Maybe it’s to a familiar place or person who brings you comfort. Paddling over the crystal clear lagoon at sunrise and a rainbow appears. The melodic sound of the tide rolling in and out. It was almost too perfect. The beauty here at @conradboraboranui is hard to put into words, but somewhere between the bottom of the lagoon and the tips of the clouds always brings a sense of comfort 🌈

This world never ceases to amaze me. After months of planning, finally stepped foot on the island of Ua Pou. @kayrubes1 @robstrok @enesbeck and I spent sunrise trying to get a better view of the incredible peaks that make this island so unique and mystifying. As comforting and easy as it is planning trips to popular destinations, it’s hard to beat the thrill of stepping into new terrain. The couple thousand inhabitants spend their days fishing, farming, and welcomed us into their homes for incredible food and storytelling. Trips like these are irreplaceable and are one of the things I value most about this job ❤️

Where to even begin with the Marquesas isolated island chain I never knew existed until last year. After falling in love after my visit last Summer, I knew I had to find my way back to get a new take on this place with peaks erupting so uniquely out of each island. The locals have so much character and love for their home, can’t wait to share more from my experience here.

One of my favorite parts of New Zealand was tucked far away from the well known Mt. Cook National Park and the busy tourism in Milford Sound. It was along the west coast in Punakaiki, a beautiful stretch of beaches with rolling waves and no one in sight. It was a welcoming feeling, a reminder of California even though I was thousands of miles away. You often search for new experiences and feelings when planning a trip to an undiscovered destination, but it’s always nice finding something that reminds you of the place you call home.
@airnz #betterwaytofly

Watched in awe as the first morning light illuminated the peaks in Milford Sound and bring some much needed warmth to the cool channel. We were blessed with clear skies and friendly dolphins by our side as we cruised our way up the Sound. It’s a bit of a journey to get there, but what a magical place to spend the day. Here’s a few highlights from the day on the water with @southerndiscoveries.

Venturing along the Southern coast of New Zealand has rewarded us with some natural wonders unlike any I’ve seen. Cathedral Caves, reaching as tall as 100ft in height, are among the tallest sea caves in the world and form an interconnected web. Always love finding these gems hidden far away from other popular tourist spots in the country 🐾
@airnz #betterwaytofly

It may have been a little too ambitious setting off on a 10 mile sunset hike after a morning of rain. We probably should have started earlier so we didn’t spend the last mile running to the summit before the sun set. The wind was rough but somehow when it was all said and done, there we were. Sunset to ourselves overlooking one of the most beautiful views in New Zealand. It’s exactly the moment you’re looking for when you fly halfway around the way to experience something you’ve never felt before. The way down in the dark was pretty painful but it didn’t even matter. That night was one for the books @waterproject.

Meet Hillary, a 1996 Land Rover Defender from @gritrentals who has become our trusted companion on this trek through New Zealand. The roads here are lined with golden hills, curves, and the occasional group of sheep blocking the way. What better way to learn stick shift then hopping in and heading out on a 1500 mile journey 😂. First thing I learned was to not to stop on a hill. More to come from this wild trip!

Blown away by the beauty of the New Zealand coast. We hit the open road for Punakaiki and spent the night at this incredible @canopycampingescapes cabin called Fox Hut overlooking the waves. Something rejuvenating about going to sleep under the stars to the sound of the ocean. It was the perfect start to one incredible journey through this magical country.

Golden nights along the curvy California coast. Especially around this time of year, it’s amazing to see the diversity this state has to offer. From a snow covered Yosemite back to a sunset in Laguna Beach, it’s hard to imagine you can get to both spots in one day 😎

Ever since I was a kid I’ve wanted to experience Yosemite in a blanket of snow. The timing has just never worked out until this week. A few days of snow followed by the forecast of blue skies led us to plan this trip in hopes of seeing the park transformed into a Winter wonderland. The drive in was straight out of a fairytale. Snow dusted trees, white roads, and blue rivers. The first light of the day hitting the face of El Capitan was the start of something special. You can’t go wrong in the other seasons but if you’re up for an adventure, a Winter day here is something you won’t forget. More to come from Firefall and the rest of this magical experience ❄️

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