About EF

ev-il-fun-gus [ee-vuhl-fuhng-guh s]

1. A website located on the world wide web reached by executing hypertext transfer protocol www.evilfungus.com in an  internet browser; owned and maintained by Nathan Riensche and Kirsten Hauge, used to share photos, videos and stories from their outdoor pursuits, primarily in Washington and the Pacific Northwest.

2. a compound noun formed by the words:
      a. evil - harmful, injurious
      b. fungus - any of a diverse group of eukaryotic single-celled or multinucleate organisms that live by decomposing and absorbing the organic material in which they grow.

First known usage in Railay, Thailand, in the early 21st century by a group of American travelers on a rock-climbing trip. Contrary to common travel advice, and despite the protests of his companions, one member, hereafter referred to as Sean, insisted on eating salad and fresh fruit -- foods that are washed in water that is sometimes contaminated with micro-organisms that foreigners are not immune to. Shortly thereafter, to no one's surprise, Sean became ill, and was bed-bound for two days. Not one to readily admit his mistakes, Sean inisted that his illness had nothing to do with the food that he ingested, but rather it was the mold growing on the baseboard of their bungalow, or as he put it, "That evil fungus sprayed its evil spores and made me sick."

It was around that time that I, feeling in need of a creative outlet, wanted to create a website to share my adventures with my friends and family. This was 2002, and the plethora of robust, free blogs and personal website services we have today were not available. I was looking through videotape from Thailand and when I saw the scene with Sean blaming the "evil fungus" for making him sick, I knew that had to be the name. From that time it has been a regular hobby for me to design the site and add content on a regular basis. It wasn't long after the inception of the site that I began dating Kirsten, who instantly became a regular subject of and contributor to most of the content.

Then, in August of 2006, Kirsten and I tied the knot, and because Washington is a common law sate, this website is now about us and our adventures. Kidding, of course, but really I did anticipate changing the denomination to equate to that and to emulate our quaint nickname, Q8, but I just couldn't quite come up with an adequate technique to make a playful colloquy. So I stuck with the insipidly ironic "evil fungus." I would have had to come up with all new logos and transfer everything to a new site if I changed, and that would mean a lot of work, and in this age of ubiquitous free and incredibly easy online "life-sharing" mediums, that just didn't seem like an option.

Late in 2009, Kirsten and I had our first child.  Knowing that our outdoor activities would shift down a couple gears, and wanting to ensure that in the long term evilfungus remained a going concern, I decided to discontinue paying for and maintaining my own personal website space on the internet, and take advantage of the incredibly well designed free blog and photo-sharing sites that are available.  Thus, this latest iteration of evilfungus takes advantage of Blogger, Picasa, and You Tube to make a more canned, but vastly easier to maintain web presence.

So now, a brief history of our climbing careers. I started rock climbing in 1998, then took the Washington Alpine Club's basic and intermediate climbing classes in 2002 to learn mountaineering and glacier skills. That was the year Kirsten and I met. Kirsten took the NOLS mountaineering course in the Waddington Range in B.C. in 1998, the same year I started rock-climbing. She rock-climbed and ice-climbed in the midwest for a couple years, but finally the pull of the mountains grew too strong and she moved to Seattle in 2000. She took the WAC's backcountry skiing class in 2002, and then helped instruct my climbing class that same year, where she taught me how to tie knots. The following winter, I started backcountry skiing with her and she taught me to telemark. A few years later, we both sold our souls to the devil and switched to randonee. Our focus has since shifted more onto skiing than rock-climbing, whether it's riding lifts, hunting powder in the backcountry, going on long overnight tours, or ski mountaineering, but we try to keep all of our skills sharp. We have found equanimity in the beauty, thrill, vigor, and camaraderie of all outdoor activities, and we look forward to sharing it with our children.

That should be all the information you need, now return ye safely to the site.