Alex Z., his wife and Dizzy moved to Portland two years ago from Chicago. He came to Oregon for the love of the outdoors. As a young man Alex became an Eagle Scout. This is where his passion for hiking, camping, and rafting began. One of his other passions is art. He has a B.F.A in glassblowing and sculpture. He has spent eleven years blowing glass all over the U.S. What he likes most about glassblowing is that it’s a strenuous activity with all the heat and weight of the glass. Alex believes that stress brings out the best in people. He originally came out here to blow glass, but his priorities shifted and the US Outdoor Store became a better fit. It gives him the flexibility to pursue his Masters in Education. Plus, at the US Outdoor Store we can bring our dogs to work. How could Alex and Dizzy resist.

Dizzy is a nine year old Australian Kelpie. Alex raised him from a pup. This breed is highly intelligent and has the need for lots of exercise. A perfect fit for Alex and his love for all things outdoors. Dizzy is his constant companion for hiking, camping, biking, even snowshoeing. Dizzy likes to barrel through the snow like a little torpedo with legs. He is in his element. One of Alex’s favorite memories was when Dizzy was still a pup and saw snow for the first time. He got so excited and started jumping in the air to catch the snowflakes. They spent hours on a trampoline they had in the yard bouncing and catching the snow.

Alex and Dizzy have criss crossed the country several times. Like Mad Max and his dog driving and having adventures throughout the countryside. Only without freaks in leather outfits trying to kill them. They have visited the Appalachian Mountains, the Smoky Mountains, Rocky Mountains, and the Cascades Mountain ranges. One of Dizzy’s favorite things is water. Going through Colorado one day they stopped for a hike. Dizzy was having a great time splashing and swimming in some streams. Then he decided to jump in the Colorado River proper. It was a scary moment for Alex. But Dizzy, a professional, pulled it off.

Dizzy at the shop

As summer turns to fall; Alex and Dizzy’s favorite time of year, because winter is coming. You should come down to the shop and check out all our shop dogs, but make sure you go down to camping so you can meet Dizz the Fearless. Stay gold Dizzy.

There’s no art like Snow Art

Well, one thing is certain, French Artist Simon Beck is a snow bound, geometric shape creating god. I don’t know the man personally, but the precision of these works are so on point that I have no choice but to assume the French Artist that uses the snow laden lakes of Savoie, France, as his canvas is one of two things: Either his brain is a Texas Instrument Graphing Calculator or he is an alien or both. Though these assumptions do not give t(his) work justice. In a world that is seeking out new forms of expression, Simon Beck seems to have taken the concept of the snow angel to a new realm of consciousness. The picturesque landscapes have been documented, but imagine yourself on a journey across snow capped terrain only to summit and bare witness to this awesome sight? The experience would undoubtedly stick with you for the rest of your life. Most impressive is its lack of permanence if not documented through photograph. Here today and most certainly gone tomorrow. So here’s to you, Simon Beck, your work if not just amazing, teaches us that time is fragile and should never be taken for granted and that for a fleeting moment this world can be transformed into your own work of art. Touche!

Simon Beck Snow Art

Simon Beck Snowflake

Simon Beck Snow Art

Simon Beck Snow Patten

Simon Beck Snow Art

Simon Beck Snow Pattern sun down


Simon Beck Snow Art

Simon Beck Profile with Snowflake