Independence Day | 2014 by Micah Albert

As we usually do, we went back to my hometown to celebrate July 4th with my family.  What was once a hot country day in the Summer where we all did incredibly stupid things (I mean really stupid things - friends' fingers blown off, blown-out windows, and general illegal activity) has since led to a much-scaled down version. But it's still way more fun going back home than most of the 'shows' and CA's "Safe and Sane" overpriced fireworks. 

Also at the family ranch, Norah learned how to shoot her first real gun and know the ins-and-outs of that, so that's always cool. 

It was pretty hot, so we spent most of the week in my brothers pool. 

Nowhere Land | Feature Story for Foreign Policy Magazine by Micah Albert

It's been a very long time coming for my writing partner David Conrad and I, but our Algeria project has published today. The logistical challenge of getting into southern Algeria and embedding with their counterterrorism special forces was nearly as challenging as actually getting a project of this scale published. 

We've been working closely with Foreign Policy Magazine on this project and story, and their editors have coined this as one of their most "important stories we've ever published". 

Both David and I are very proud of the story the work. Southern Algeria, is considered one of the most difficult-to-access places in the World and the refugee situation and the ongoing conflict in the region to be amongst the most under-covered stories of the last 3 decades. 30 plus years of little-to-no reporting from this region has made even seasoned editors need use Wikipedia for a refresher on UN's second longest refugee caseload.

Check out over a year of hard work, great risk, and a lot of sand in places you didn't know you could get it, over at the FP site. Tell your friends! 150,000 refugees living in the middle of the desert since 1973.

Family Camping by Micah Albert

I needed to do some follow up work for my Ranchland story, and decided to bring my family along for the week. It was my kids first "car camping" trip. I've always hated car camping. The idea of predetermined spots, that are void of life, and dealing with neighbors' music and well, just having neighbors... does anyone else see this as weird? Let's drive to 'nature' so we can be in it, and then bring all the comforts of home and be around a bunch of random people? 

It's never been big for me or the way I grew up. Backpacking and mountaineering is the way to go; but tough to do with a 4 1/2 and 1 1/2 year old. 

But this was different. 

3 locked cattle gates later on private land, we had a giant (secret location) region of the Sierras to ourselves – river included, people not. 

Pretty epic spot for the kids' first little camping trip.