If you go

What: Krystle Wright: Behind the Camera

When: 7 p.m. Thursday

Where: Chautauqua Community House, 900 Baseline Road, Boulder

Cost: $9-$12

More info: chautauqua.com

Chautauqua Explorer Series lineup

Thursday: Krystle Wright: Behind the Camera

Nov. 9: Conrad Anker: Exploring the Himalayas

Nov. 16: 70 Years of Rocky Mountain Rescues

Dec. 7: Ulyana Horodyskyj: Earth Analogs for Space

Jan. 16: Eugene Buchanan: Comrades on the Colca

Jan. 25: Malcolm Daly: Triumph & Tragedy in Alaska

Feb. 8: Lynn Hill: Ascending Women

Feb. 15: Shawn Heinrichs: Saving the Sea Creatures

March 6: Paul Mags: Hiking the MX/US Border

March 15: Stan Havlick: Biking Seven Continents

April 19: Tad Pfeffer: Ice in the World

May 3: Madaleine Sorkin: Perfecting the Push

Colorado's picturesque peaks aren't just there to smile pretty. They're also obstacle courses, gymnasiums and playgrounds for extreme athletes chasing adrenaline.

With the state's concentration of mountain bikers, cyclists, triathletes, snowsport enthusiasts, ice climbers, mountain runners, cyclocross racers and climbers, many of these athletes thrive on finding extreme terrain.


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That's where extreme adventure photographer Krystle Wright, of Queensland, Australia, comes in. Wright captures extreme athletes from all over the world and freezes them in perfectly beautiful moments. And usually, Wright is right there hanging on the cliff, paragliding through the sky, free diving with whales, getting into all sorts of complicated situations — basically doing whatever it takes to succeed.

Wright will visit Boulder to talk about her adventures at 7 p.m. Thursday at Chautauqua Community House. "Krystle Wright: Behind the Camera" will kick off the second season of Chautauqua's Explorer Series, featuring speakers who will take Boulder audiences to some of the most remote places on Earth — the Himalayas with Conrad Anker, a journey to Mars with Ulyana Horodyskyj, free climbing The Nose with legend Lynn Hill, and biking seven continents with Stan Havlick, among others.

Tracking down the woman behind the lens proved a challenge, as Wright is busy documenting the extreme world. Over an email exchange from Mallorca, Spain, she discussed her inspiration, her crazy adventures and what she hopes to capture next.

Daily Camera: Your photos are wow. Gorgeous. Tell me about the first photo you took when you realized this is what you want to do in life.

Krystle Wright: When I was a teenager, I used to always take a disposable Kodak camera with me on every camping trip. I loved the process of planning a trip out with the camera and setting a limit each day on how many photos I could take since there were only 27 photos on the roll of film. It was actually my mum who suggested that I pursue a career in photography when it came time to selecting a university course. After I was accepted into the course, I went out to buy photography magazines to start doing research and I came upon the work of (Australian) sports photographer Adam Pretty, and that was my "wow" moment. As soon as I looked at his portfolio, I knew instantly that this is what I wanted to do in life.

DC: Where's the one place you'd love to capture but haven't yet?

KW: There are many places on my list that I would love to go and shoot. As much as I have loved seeing the world, I always promise myself to see a new part of Australia every time I go back. I got a chance to see a small slice of The Kimberleys in Western Australia a few years back and I would love to go back and spend a lot more time there and explore it more.

DC: You said in your bio that you have battle scars. Do friends and family get nervous when you embark on these adventures? Do you get nervous?

KW: I get excited at the opportunity to go on adventures. I know some family and friends worry about me, but they also respect and understand why I do what I do. It's easy to point out the dangers of an adventure but it doesn't matter what we do; there are dangers in everyday life that we've become accustomed to without realizing. I want to live an extraordinary life and this is the path I choose to go down.

DC: Tell me about one of your most insane journeys.

KW: One of the more complicated journeys I took was back in 2013 when I documented three other Amercian ladies as we traveled the length of the Amur River in Mongolia and far Eastern Russia. It was a journey that was very layered with logistics, ranging from horseback riding to accessing the headwaters in Mongolia, kayaking through monsoonal storms and running for cover when lightning strikes hit close by, riding the Siberian railway with three kayak bags that look like golf bags, and the list goes on. It is a wonderful and crazy journey to look back on.

DC: What's your favorite thing to do on your days off?

KW: I love being outside, whether it is climbing, free diving or skiing, etc. But I have this tendency to overwork myself and sometimes its just nice to do nothing and just rest.

DC: Boulder, and Colorado, is full of extreme athletes, so you'll be visiting familiar territory. Not to mention, gorgeous scenery. Will you be taking any crazy adventures while you're in town?

KW: I hope to be out and about whilst visiting Boulder. I'm not sure what I'll get up to but I'm sure I'll find a way to be out in the mountains and enjoying the incredible terrain that is at Boulder's doorstep.

Christy Fantz: 303-473-1107, fantz@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/fantzypants