The Sunday Read: ‘It Was Just a Kayaking Trip. Until It Upended Our Lives.’

It was meant to mark the start of their lives out of college, but the adventure quickly turned into a nightmare. Beginning with what seemed to be a lucky whale sighting, three friends set out on a sea-kayaking trip through Glacier Bay National Park in Alaska, watching out for bears, and having a good time, when tragedy struck.

In recounting the days preceding and following the accident, which seriously injured one of his friends, the Times journalist Jon Mooallem explains how he was forced to reckon with his fears. Detailing the incident’s surprising repercussions, he muses on the importance of overcoming one’s fears, and finding poetry in life’s darkest moments.

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Additional production for The Sunday Read was contributed by Emma Kehlbeck, Parin Behrooz, Anna Diamond, Sarah Diamond, Jack D’Isidoro, Elena Hecht, Desiree Ibekwe, Tanya Pérez, Marion Lozano, Naomi Noury, Krish Seenivasan, Corey Schreppel, Margaret Willison, Kate Winslett and Tiana Young. Special thanks to Mike Benoist, Sam Dolnick, Laura Kim, Julia Simon, Lisa Tobin, Blake Wilson and Ryan Wegner.

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