I spent a weekend celebrating St Patrick’s Day with a run in my usual place, and a visit to an organized run down at the Vancouver USA Waterfront. While I don’t think I own anything green, I saw a lot of green and celebrated with a green beer!
A visit to Big Bend National Park was the main reason I wanted to take this swing through the South West of the United States. I wasn’t disappointed, I really enjoyed it. And while the West side of the park was a little different than the East side, it was spectacular in its own way. The Chisos Basin and Emory Peak were more spectacular than anticipated, and the lower portions of the West side were fun too.
In February of 2023 I visited Big Bend national Park. This video covers the Eastern side of the park including Nine Point Draw Campground, a run in Dog Canyon, an unsuccessful bike ride in Dagger Flats, a trip to Mexico at the Boquillas Crossing, a hike in Boquillas Canyon and a drive, a bike ride, and camping on the Old Ore Road. This is big desert country.
After a cold and unsuccessful trip to Canyonlands, I stopped by Arches National Park for the day to do a short hike. The views of the arch were pretty doggone cool, and the hike was a little more challenging due to the weather. I had visited Arches a couple of years ago on a road trip, but had not had a chance to see the Delicate Arch and Wolfe Ranch that I visited on this trip.
In the winter of 2023 I spent a month traveling throughout the SouthWest portion of the USA, mostly seeing the desert and the National Park properties. As usual, I did quite of bit of exercise, and since I was in glorious places I also did some hikes where it wasn’t possible to run or bike.
This video is simply an overview of the trip, including some of the general themes that would be too repetitive to include in videos of each place I saw.
Subsequent videos will cover individual places and the exercise I did in them. The parks and places in the subsequent videos will include:
Mesa Verde National Park
Carlsbad Caverns National Park
Big Bend National Park
El Malpais National Monument
White Sands National Park
Chaco Culture National Historical Park
Petrified Forest National Park
El Malpais National Monument
Joshua Tree National Park
Mojave National Preserve
Death Valley National Park
Canyon de Chelly National Monument
Longview has a little more interesting history than some cities, and I hit the hightlights around RA Long and his Long Bell Lumber company as I ride my bike through Longview. Along the way I look at the buildings he built and donated to the city, the downtown as it is today..... and for a special treat I visit the Sasquatch Festival! That is not something you see every day!
If you are interested in more, there is a very nice article about Longview here: https://www.historylink.org/File/8560
While I usually like to run on the beach, for this trip I decided to ride my bike. It is a sandy and salty trip for the bike, but I had a good time!
This trip was also a clam digging trip. I love razor clams, and clam digging was open for the weekend. But it was at night, and the video wasn’t very good, so instead you get views of my kitchen! Just for fun I tried three different recipes to cook these razor clams. One was my usual fried clams, one was a broiled clam recipe from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the third one was a Beer-Battered recipe from Sunset magazine. Razor clams have a unique flavor and I loved them all, but I did have a favorite that I will probably embrace in the future!
The first full weekend in January the city of Lincoln City Oregon had a “Special Drop” of glass floats. During the course of the year they put out about 3,000 glass floats, but on occasional weekends they drop extras. So I went down to see if I could catch one.
As long as I was there, I wanted to do some long runs, so I ran and walked a total of 38.8 miles over the course of three days and 12 hours of actual moving time. As a result, I had lots of video, so here it is!
For New Year’s day in 2023 I did a run and Polar Plunge at Magnuson Park in Seattle. This is an annual event, and I did it once before. But for this video I decided to try something different, and I took the red pill.
There has been so much written about the use of AI that I wanted to try it for myself. I used ChatGPT to create a story to follow with the video, and I used DALL-E to create some images. I explored briefly a couple of systems that are used to detect work done by AI. Finally I used the AI Art Generator in my video editing software to revise some of the video.
I present the results of that research and the final video product here for you.
I have to say that I enjoyed to process of figuring out how to use this stuff. Seems like it might even be a useful skill, it appears to be taking over the world!
This video details the process I used to convert a rowing boat, a big wherry, from fixed seats (thwarts) to a sliding seat rowing system.
The conversion was difficult. It was accomplished mostly by copying the existing setup I have in my existing boat, an Oxford Wherry designed by Colin Angus. I took the sliding seat rig out of the Oxford Wherry and put it into the new big wherry to be able to measure and decide where things go. The major challenge initially was to determine where the rig should sit fore and aft in the boat. There was a lot of guesswork involved and then I launched the boat to see what the actual results were. The next major challenge was to set up the outriggers and the oars, for which I used the Nuts and Bolts Guide to Rigging by Mike Davenport (maxrigging.com).
There is a lot of work I did on cosmetic repairs, varnishing, and painting the outside of the boat that I did not show in this video. You can thank me when you see me!
Necessarily there is a lot of detail I have left out. I would be happy to answer any questions.
No exercise in this video!
In late November of 2022 my daughter and I rode and ran the MTB Trail at Naylor Mill Park in Salisbury MD, which is right on the border of Delaware and Maryland, about a half hour from my daughter’s house in Milton, DE.
The ride is technically challenging for those of us without good mountain biking skills, and makes a great place to improve your mountain biking skills…. Which we attempted to do!
In September of 2022 I went to Forest Grove OR two different times, on two different back-to-back weekends. Itwas kind of weird because I hadn't been there in ages so to have it hit twice was funny.
While I was there on one weekend I went to the Sidewalk Chalk Art Festival and did a run on my own around Hagg Lake. The next weekend Iwent for the Harvest Century which is an organized bicycle ride with many options, and I did the 40 mile ride at that event.