Top 9 Tales Never Told

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Champagne Toast at the Bottom of the Grand Canyon

Given the fact that today’s date—9/9/09—is kind of unique, I thought I ought to mark the occasion by doing something equally unusual here.

Which got me to thinking that, while I’ve written about more than 30 of my most extraordinary experiences on the pages of, I’ve had a number of equally cool once-in-a-lifetime adventures over the years that I’ve yet to share here.

With that in mind, I thought I’d give you a quick look at nine of my favorite extraordinary experience tales never told:

Airship Venture’s Zeppelin Flights

Cruising serenely 1,000 feet above San Francisco Bay landmarks like the Golden Gate bridge and Alcatraz aboard one of only three zeppelins on the planet makes these hour-long sightseeing flights über cool.

Utah Olympic Park Bobsled Rides

They bill this Park City, UT experience as “the most intense minute of your life” and, let me tell you, they’re not exaggerating.  An amazing experience, but best suited for adrenaline junkies.

Ride The Wind Airboat Adventures

Airboat rides are a dime a dozen in the Everglades, but Captain Randy’s operation is different. From using a smaller custom-designed airboat that can take you places those other barges can’t go to the chance to actually take the controls yourself, this is the only way to fly through the fabled River of Grass.

4-Wheeling America Backcountry Tours

Want to get way off the beaten path and explore all those breathtakingly beautiful wild places the average tourist will never see?  My friend Bill Burke—one of the world’s foremost 4WD trainers and backcountry guides—is the guy to see.

Riding In A Mardi Gras Parade

Everyone knows being in the crowd at a Mardi Gras parade can be great fun.  But joining the star-studded Krewe of Orpheus to be in the parade, well, that takes the experience to a whole ‘nother level.

Sundance Helicopters Grand Canyon Picnic

Long to stand on the floor of the Grand Canyon but not up for making the grueling hike?  I felt the same way until I discovered these way-fun flights that land you 3,500 feet below the rim for a champagne picnic .

Sea Quest Kayaking Orca Watching Tours

Paddling a sea kayak and whale-watching tours are both fun outings, even if they are a little generic.  But put the two together with a pod of killer whales off the coast of Washington’s scenic San Juan Islands and you’ll have something to tell the grandkids about.

Astronomers Inn

On most trips, your day is pretty well done by the time you head back to your room for the night.  Not here, as the owners of this southern Arizona B&B open up their in-house observatory where your personal astronomer will take you on a guided tour of the galaxy.

Jim Hall Kart Racing School

While other racing schools may look sexier, I can tell you from personal experience that you’ll learn more true racing technique—and have way more fun—tearing up the track with Jim Hall and his instructors


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