Vagabond Explorer Magazine Unleashed!

Road to Nowhere in Particular, Photo by Gretchen Wilson-Kalav

What do you say when someone contacts you, plies you with flattering comments and asks you to be part of something quite unique?

My response was ‘I’ll think about it. I’ll think about it more. I’ll think about it a lot more. I’ll ask very key questions and then – -you got it – I’ll think about it even more’. Ultimately, the answer became obvious and I answered with a ‘yes’. Granted, flattery rarely hurts but it also rarely plays into my final decisions about participating in any particular project. As I just mentioned to someone else recently, give me a good reason to do something and you win. Give me bullshit and you lose. With that said…

Image Courtesy of Vagabond Explorer

Wade Shepard of Vagabond Journey has just unleashed Vagabond Explorer Magazine.

Yes, he used flattery in his request but also gave me several very good reasons why I should become a contributor, reviewing travel blogs I consider worthy of recognition. My real life job is reading travel blogs daily and there are an amazing number out there just ripe for the choosing. Just so you know, the magazine will be available on a quarterly basis as a PDF download. (FYI, four to five blogs/sites will be reviewed in each release.) It also comes with a very small price tag of $5.00 USD per issue.

Vagabond Explorer is a mix of articles, photography, commentary, tips/tricks and a whole plethora of other travel information. The concept: Be the explorer – whether it’s from your armchair or while you are on the road. Each contributor hails from their own original location and their own ‘space in time’. But, each has chosen to venture out and explore the world around them one way or another. (Okay, I’m the only one with 2-3 weeks vacation time while the rest live their lives moving across borders regularly. I believe in vicarious travel though only out of current necessity. I’m also very jealous.) Regardless, Vagabond Explorer will rival any other travel magazine available and will spur you to become your own navigator to places unknown. Again, with all that said, let me introduce you to the contributors who have already been coined as VE’s Posse:

Wade Shepard

Wade Shepard

Vagabond Journey: Editor and the man behind the concept curtain – handing out hearts, brains, courage and a way home. Okay, make that a way to travel. He is the Wizard of VE’s Oz. (Sorry Toto, it’s doggy daycare for you while everyone travels.) Only time will tell what is really in that ‘bag of special things’.

Craig Heinburger

Travelvice: The artistically creative man behind the visuals. We thank him for his designs, graphics and cover work. (I think he had something to do with the ‘horse of many colors’ and suggested using the powdered Jello™ for those scenes. If you don’t get the reference, check out your movie history about the Emerald City.)



The Longest Way Home: The ‘Tin Man’ who expresses his opinions through his startling photography and poignant commentaries. He may be ‘stuck’ in his travels once in awhile, but someone always comes along with an oilcan to set him free. Just ignore the squeaking. I know the oilcan is here somewhere…

Jasmine Stephenson

Jasmine Wanders: Jasmine, to me, is Vagabond Explorer’s Glinda. Having worked with her in the past, I picture her helping all the ‘Munchkins’ and making the world a much better place. (I, by no means, use Munchkins in a negative way. Jasmine works diligently to improve the lives of those who are less fortunate than us. We must get her a wand.)

Sam Langley

Cubicle Ditcher: Sorry Sam, I was just introduced to you recently via Vagabond Explorer. But, from what I have read on Sam’s site, I believe people should check it out, as it’s great stuff! Anyone able to leave the 9-5 daily grind for travel has my support. If you have no objections, I will say you are the Scarecrow who left the corporate cornfields for much greener pastures.

Michael Robert Powell

The Candy Trail: Michael is Vagabond Explorer’s lion who received the gift of courage somewhere around 1988. Through his nomadic travels, he has encountered some very unusual situations and has lived to tell the (true) tales to us all. Some of his writings may come with an ‘age appropriate’ warning at times, but don’t shy away from them as they are well worth the read.

Ani St. Amand

Ani St. Amand

Vagabond Journey/Explorer Contributor: Ani’s yellow brick road is paved with wood and steel. In other words, she follows the path of the iron horses as she rides the rails all around the world. She has been described as a modern day hobo who has a love of trains and hopping those freighters while they make their scheduled stops. So, wave at the next train that passes by because Ani may just wave back.

Steven Mendoza

Vagabond Journey/Explorer Contributor: Steven is definitely not in Kansas anymore. (I’m not sure if Steven has ever been in Kansas but he does hail from the Untied States.) I do know he has spent many years in Japan and most recently survived the earthquake and subsequent tsunami. Though he has now returned to his home country, Steven’s (first) article is a reminder to us all that the earth and its inhabitants don’t always play fair.

Gretchen Wilson-Kalav

TravelBlogs: I guess I’m Dorothy when it comes to this project. Yes, Dorothy did travel from Kansas to Oz and back. (Been to Kansas.) But, her journey was also just a dream. While the above-mentioned contributors write about their own experiences, I will be telling you about other travelers and their experiences. I’ll be the one performing Toto’s doggy daycare while seeking out the emeralds hidden within the city of travel blogs.

Vagabond Explorer is available as a PDF download for the small price of $5.00 USD per issue FREE! (Yes, it’s really FREE!)

Click Here and Download Now!

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Discussion »

  • #1Michael Robert Powell

    Nice write-up Gretchen. Thought that I’d mention to potential readers / buyers that you get 55 – A4-sized – pages in this mag, so great value @$5 … And hey, it’s also a great read !

    the candy trail … a nomad across the planet, since 1988

  • #2Gretchen

    Thank you, Michael! And, thank you for mentioning the 55 pages as I accidentally neglected to include that information. I guess I need to borrow Jasmine’s wand when we finally find one for her. ;)

  • #3Dave from The Longest Way Home

    Tin Man here. Where’s that oil can?

    Well, at least someone finally put a photo of me on the internet. I’m looking youthful I must say!

    Thanks Dorothy! :)

  • #4Gretchen

    I have the oil can. Maybe you’ll just have to visit so you’ll stop squeaking. LOL!!! And, you are welcome! BTW, youthfulness is just a state of mind. ;)

  • Add Your Comment

  • The Guy: I think Dave and Jodi raise some very valid points and they are consistent with my perceptions based on over...
  • Jay Daviot: Epic list! There are some great blogs there. Would love to see a few more blogs from photographers though...
  • John: I’ve always wanted to hitch hike across the USA.
  • Sara Wikoff: I found your post very interesting. I am just a Freshman in college and I have not decided my major yet....
  • John: Great advice, I always buy charcoal tabs in case I get an upset tummy.
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