Monday, December 31, 2007
On the second hike of the weekend Chris's girlfriend Shayla decided to join us. We planned on doing an easy trail, and had decided on doing Miller Creek, but at the last minute Chris remembered a trail up by the Sierra Prietta Outlook (a.k.a. the Copper Basin outlook). I didn't take a lot of pictures (just not in the mood I guess), but we did have a fun time. It was a little more elevation change than we had been looking for, but nothing we couldn't handle pretty easily. A good time was had by all.
PHOTOS (all 5 of them)
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Well me and Chris finally found the right entrance to the trail we were looking for last weekend. Of course we also ended up meandering off-trail and following a very frozen creek down to the point where we were getting way to hung up on the shrubbery to continue. Definitely a good time, and I also got to give my new backpack a whirl. After a little break-in I think it will serve me very well!
We found this concrete trough filled with water, which had frozen solid. Of course we both managed to slip and fall because we are partially retarded. :)
After going off-trail and following the creak for a while we came upon a little waterfall, which was a lot of fun getting down, but not so fun getting the dogs back up.
When we finally decided to turn back, this is what we had to look forward to (many scratches to come):
Also joining us this time was a red heeler that Chris was dogsitting for a friend. His name is Hemi:
Now that Luke is living with us, we are trying to carpool to save a little moolah. This means that I have some time to burn before he is done coaching the Swim Team at the college every day. I took one such occasion to take some pictures of Yavapai Community College where I went to school.
When I first started attending the school it pretty much looked like a prison. two lanes led to the front of the buildings, and everything was plane jane grey concrete. In the last 2 years that I was there the college started to massively upgrade it's campus, and the pictures in the photoset are a few that caught my eye as being different from when I was there.
Now i am to the fun part of college, where I can take fun classes, without worrying about those silly degree things. Last time I checked I was up to 104 credit hours! Wow, how did I have time to get into trouble??
Many, MANY long days spent here (sometimes up to 13 hours a day):
A lovely walkway that used to be 3 flights of stairs with handicapped elevators
Friday, December 28, 2007
So Avus has asked me how you can add a link when you are adding a comment to somebody else's blog. To understand the answer you have to realize that blogspot allows the use of HTML code in your comments (and your blog for that matter, if you switch to html view). So after you realize this, it is just a matter of finding the right code to create what is called a hyperlink.
The code for a link to my site would look like this:
<a href="http://tombocheck.blogspot.com">TOMBO'S BLOG</a>
which creates this:
The <a href= is what tells the computer that you are creating a link.
The "http://tombocheck.blogspot.com" tells the computer where I want my link to GO
The > tells it that I am ready to put in what I want my link to say
The TOMBO'S BLOG is the text that appears on the screen when I am all done
And finally the </a> tells the computer that I am done with my link and want to continue typing normally.
This is what is created when you hit that 'Insert Hyperlink' button in your blogging software, it just happens behind the scenes.
Give it a while, and see how it works for ya!
Thursday, December 27, 2007
So, if I ever get into solo camping I think that instead of buying a lighter tent I might just buy this Hennessy Hammock. 2.5 lbs, packed size 5"x12", and still comes in cheaper than the solo tent that I want ($200 vs. $250, plus almost a pound lighter). No need to clear the ground, or worry about digging a rain trench around the tent, only need to stake down the fly (sounds optional from the reviews) and you don't have to carry as thick of a sleeping pad since you aren't dealing with rocks/pinecones/sticks. Oooh, the gear-nut inside of me is starting to salivate...
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Okay, so the posts are a little out of order. Imagine that this was posted on Monday, and life will be good. :)
Kendal Camp to Maverick Mountain
Saturday Chris ended up having to work, so what I had planned as a duo hike, turned into a solo. I went to Kendal Camp, and found the trailhead to go up to Maverick Ridge (unlike last weekend). The hike was surprisingly hard. It was about 30 degrees out and to get to the ridge you have to hike up the snowy side of Maverick Mountain. Not only was it a strenuous hike, but with 2-3 inches of crusty snow on the ground, it was VERY slow going. Step - sink, step - sink, very annoying. Scrappy of course was having a blast. After an hour of hiking to cover the 1.5 miles up the hill, we finally hit the saddle between Maverick Mountain and Mt. Tritle. This was as far as read in the trail book, so I took a right and followed an abandoned quad trail which looped around the mountains. On the sunny side of the hill it was about 55 degrees, so I ended up having to ditch all my layers in the sun, then put them all back on when I would get to another snowy section.
After about another 1.5 miles I looked at my watch, and realized that I needed to turn around now or risk hiking out in the dark, as well as having DaNece call Search and Rescue (I always give her a time to call them if she hasn't heard from me). So I turned around, and still ended up jogging some of the 3 miles back so that I could get back to the truck in time. All-in-all it was an absolutely gorgeous hike, but with the snow it's difficulty was increased. I think I would wait until spring/summer to repeat this trail, and go to Mt. Tritle from the saddle to see the views that everybody talks about. :) Of interest: Arizona Highways had an article about this trail.
East Copper Trail #260 - with Chris
After leaving me hanging on Saturday, Chris wanted to hit the trails with me on Sunday. Hey - I'm always down for a good hike. So I looked through the trail book, to find a trail that was rated 'easy'. After all, my legs were still hurting from the hike on Saturday.
I find one that piqued my interest: East Copper Trail #260.
Length: 1.5 miles,
Elevation Change: 450ft,
That sounds about right, spend about 2 hours on the trail with a few breaks, nothing harder than Chris can handle, and something that will let me work the kinks out of my legs.
Oh how wrong I was.
I should have known it was all going to go awry when we couldn't find the trail by the directions given in the book. Most of the time the book is spot-on, but every now and then it is off by a few miles on getting to the trail. So after a string of lucky guesses, we end up looking at a trail sign: EAST COPPER TRAIL #260. Perfect, we've found it. Everything the book told us was wrong.
The hike starts right up a hill, and I think to myself: "Wow! That 450 Feet elevation gain is going to be in the first 1/2 mile." So we keep plugging along, and it continues to climb, and climb. We know that we are nearing or exceeding the stated elevation, but we figure what the hell; we are here, so we keep on truckin. After almost 2 hours, I know I'm going to hurt tomorrow. We finally get to a level spot (not the top of the mountain), and stop for a break with a few snacks, and lots of water. We then get the bright idea that we will just bushwack down the hill to the Forest Road we came in on (which is plainly visible). Little did we know that it turns into nothing but thick underbrush 50-100 ft below the trail. That was a short adventure, but one that left many scratches to remember it by.
We decide to go back the way we came. Chris wants to know exactly how much elevation we changed, so we both take a guess (I say 900ft, he says 1400ft) and Turn on the GPS for the trek back. An hour later and I am the winner, with a downward elevation change of 1022 ft. Man, that was a blast, can we go home now?
So, I have finally made the switch to mozilla firefox in place of microsoft Internet Explorer. I am dedicated this time. I've tried to quit in the past, but IE just kept creeping back in to my life. I'm fully using thunderbird in place of Outlook Express, and figured i could finally accept firefox into my life. And one cool little firefox extension that I have found is kwout, which allows you to take screenshots of webpages, to post as quotes on your blog. So, instead of explaining how it works I can just kwout it:
Kinda cool, eh? Not sure how much use I will get, but it is cool none the less. Also - the links on whatever page you are quoting are retained, which is a pretty cool feature.
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
*DISCLAIMER - not all photos are uploaded yet. I am a lazy bastard, and it may take me a day or two to get some of the pictures off of D's camera.*
So Christmas is drawing to a close. It was a doozy. DaNece, as usual, has outdone herself. She not only got me the backpack that I had asked for, but also managed to amaze me by getting me a keyboard (the musical kind), which I have been wanting for a while now. She rocks! Other than that, it was a couple of items I had asked for for my survival kit (match safe, firesteel, compass, blah blah blah), and the coolest game ever: Pentago. She liked all of her gifts as well (as always, i am trailing in the present game. All i got her was a nice pair of slippers, some pajamas, a perfume set, and a few books). PHOTOS
After presents, we started getting ready to head up to Flagstaff to hike the Lava River Cave. Unfortunately, it turns out that the road to access the caves is closed during the winter, due to precipititious conditions. So, me and DaNece opted to head over to the Grand Canyon, which neither of us had been to in a LONG time. We had a good old time there, spending about 2 hours walking along the rim, taking pictures, and watching all the foreigners (mostly asian) go ga-ga over the canyon. Yeah it is cool, but basically it's just a big ditch. So after the cold got the better of us, we turned back to the truck and headed for the hills. 2 hours later and we were back home, and HUNGRY!! PHOTOS
Steak with butter sauteed 'shrooms and onions, Twice baked potatos, lemon-spritzed brussel sprouts, and french rolls. Need I say more? PHOTOSET of food, newly created, and currently only contains this dinner.
Back to the grind tomorrow. How will I cope??
Monday, December 24, 2007
My question is, what is going on in Russia when they say: "Such cases are not uncommon in Russia where there have been regular reports of 'Mowgli' children abandoned by their parents who are cared for by animals."
Wait... not uncommon? It's the freakin Jungle Book over there!
Friday, December 21, 2007
So it is that magical season. And something is annoying the heck out of me on a regular basis. That thing is this: everybody is so nice during this season. Now this isn't your classic Grinch who stole Christmas type scenario. I'm not irritated by their merry-making or the generosity that they feel the need to show during the season. I'm all for those things; really. Ask most anybody that knows me and they will tell you that I am one chipper son of a gun.
No, what irritates me is that for 2 months out of the year everybody is happy, generous, gracious, and generally fairly nice to be around. The rest of the year they resort to being their snotty, pretentious, selfish selves. If you want to be a mean person, that is all well and good. We need those people in the world as much as anybody else, but at least be that person all the time. I agree that poverty-stricken kids deserve presents too, but what about when spring and summer roll around? Some of those same kids go hungry during the summer, as the food bank tries to drum up donations. Really though, what do you care? You donated a bike, some barbies, and a few cans of food back at Christmas. Maybe it's just me, but that seems a little stupid.
Ask most volunteer organizations when they need your help. I'll bet dollars to donuts that they won't tell you Thanksgiving or Christmas.
I have to start this story with the depressing fact that I couldn't find my camera once I was done cooking, so this post is actually 99% useless. But since when has that stopped me?
So the other half is gone to Phoenix for a few days to see her Mom, the new roommate is over at his dad's house for dinner. That leaves two people at home: me and the mutt. This means that I can cook whatever I want, and not worry about hearing complaints about 'weird' ingredients, or worry about it disappearing from the pans faster than I can put it there. So what to make? Since DaNece hates shrimp and I am slowly gaining an appreciation for it I figured a nice shrimp scampi would about fit the bill.
And so began the madness:
- Get pot of water boiling
- Dissect red peppers and stick under the broiler to roast (and stink of the house)
- de-shell and de-vein the pound of shrimp that I bought
- mince up some garlic
- throw some butter under the stove heat-vent to soften
- chop up zucchini, onion, and yellow squash. Toss with salt/pepper/olive oil/garlic and throw in roasting pan
- pull out peppers and seal up to steam for ten minutes / throw zucchini pan in oven at 3:75 to roast
- chop up some parsley
- juice a lime and throw some of that tangy goodness in the softened butter, along with some black pepper. Mix and refrigerate to re-harden a bit
- get oil and butter heating up in a big pan for the shrimp
- throw the pasta in the water
- pull the skin off of the peppers, add to food processor along with 1/2 container of sour cream, some cayenne, salt, pepper, and minced garlic
- get pad of butter warming in small pot, once melty, throw pepper sauce in there to make it a little richer, and keep it warm. I can handle this
- throw the shrimp in the hot butter/oil
- drain the pasta. Should have tossed with olive oil, but at this point my head was starting to panic with all the things that were getting done at the same time
- hmm - the shrimp are cooking REALLY fast (only my second time cooking shrimp, and my first time with raw shrimp)
- scramble to flip the shrimp
- oh no, the pepper sauce is bubbling and needs a lid, and a stir
- shit the pasta still needs olive oil - screw it
- didn't i buy bread?
- locate loaf of roasted garlic bread and throw some slices in the toaster
- I could have sworn i had some butter..... i made butter didn't I?
- OH MY GOD the shrimp are done! I need a plate, where do we keep the plates? There isn't any room for a plate on this counter!!! They are going to burn!!!!
- finally find a space for a plate, yank the now-blackening bread from the toaster.
- pull butter from fridge, and butter bread
- toss shrimp with parsley and lime juice
- grab a plate to eat off of, and assemble pasta/red pepper sauce/shrimp/extra dash of lime.
- That's good... didn't I make something else? ZUCHINI!!!!! Pull it out and thankfully it isn't dead - just right actually.
So after all of that madness, I enjoyed one of the best meals I've made it a few weeks. And the best part: leftovers for lunch/dinner this weekend! Oh yeah, and lime butter + roasted garlic bread = something i could eat all day long.
Oh yeah; the camera? On the couch under my sweatshirt. A damn crying shame as it was also one of the prettiest meals I have made in a while.... Alas; such is the way of life.
Wow, so after linking to those local blogs yesterday, I come in this morning and find more comments waiting for me than I can shake a stick at. Well 5 to be exact. More comments in one day than in the rest of my 10 months of blogging. It put a smile on my face. :)
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
So, you have some free time, and you've already read all of my recent posts? i have the answer! Here are some good sites to whittle away the hours.
Overheard in New York - oh the things people say in public.
Post Secret - Kind of depressing, yet comical at the same time.
XKCD - Geeky stick figure comics. More for the programmers, but still funny to geeks of all sorts
Video Sift - like watching videos on the internet, but don't want to wade through all the stupid ones? Let video sift do it for you!
Image of the day - random images from around the net. Some real, some not. Go through the archives
Passive Aggressive Notes - Notes from people who just can't seem to get mean.
Post-It Project - all the art you can fit on a little yellow piece of paper
Apostrophe abuse - everybody abuse's those darn apostrophe's
Best of Craigslist - craziness
Literary rejections - rejection letters. Lots of them
Overheard in the Office - from the same people as overheard in new york
Apparently in china there is a whole village dedicated to reproducing the works of the great artists. Not sold as original works, the Hyper-Fakes let you buy that Van-Goh with the the globs of paint texturizing the surface of the canvas for $50, instead of a couple mil. :)
Monday, December 17, 2007
So Nikki B is finally a second time College Graduate. GO NIKKI!!! She graduated from Prescott College with some fancy degree that include the words AgroEcology, and Latin American Studies. The graduation ceremony was on Saturday, the 15th. Every Graduating student got a 1 minute introduction and then a one minute speach. As long as this took, it did provide for some very interesting speeches. My favorite one included the quote 'Art is like pooping, I just have to do it.' Not to mention there was a guy in a chicken suit (which i totally failed to get a picture of)!
On Sunday, we played it cool. Me and Scrappy went out for a hike at Kendel camp, but I'm an idiot and missed the trailhead, so we just bushwacked around for an hour and half in the snow, which was fun!
Then we did some posing for Photos to send with our christmas cards (no, they aren't sent yet, and yes they will probably be late. I'm good with that)
A good time was had by all!!
Friday, December 14, 2007
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Heck why not? Bold the items you have done. Here is mine:
01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said "I love you" and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby's diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and didn't care who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Played touch football
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an "expert"
83. Gotten flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Kissed on the first date
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised children
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
98. Passed out cold
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Touched a stingray
110. Broken someone's heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
132. Touched a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey
135. Selected one "important" author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you're living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn't know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone's life
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
so I did some more walking in alleys on my lunch hour yesterday over by Prescott College, and spied a few interesting items.
Stockings waiting for Santa:
An old Ford F-250 pickup that could use some new paint:
The Grim Reaper coming to get'cha:
American flag hanging from a rundown apartment. I'm a sucker for the flags:
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
I am officially ditching all of my Hotmail email accounts in favor of GMail accounts. Not only do they not restrict access via 3rd party application (e.g. I can check my email using thunderbird instead of logging into the website), but they now have IMAP access so that what i see in thunderbird and what i see on the web interface are the same thing.
Now i just hope that Google doesn't take over the rest of my life.
Plus i am playing with Google Page Creator;
Yup, Google is in control of my life. They control the vertical AND the horizontal. Now if they could just come out with an Operating System so I could ditch windows, as well as a blogging software (that i can use offline), and i think i would be happily scroogled.
Monday, December 10, 2007
Well we have officially gotten our first snow here in P-Town. Not much, but enough to cause me to want to go hiking. So I called up Marciano, and we took a small trek over to Aspen Creek for about 3-4 miles worth of snowy goodness.
DaNece also got some ridiculous items for the dog, but the pictures are classy! Doesn't he look like a happy camper?
And since a lot of my pictures seem to feature the little fluffball in my life, i created a photoset of pictures with him posing in them.
Friday, December 7, 2007
Thursday, December 6, 2007
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
So, after cooking up some salmon (and whatnot) over at Marciano's house on Sunday, my throat kind of felt like it had something stuck in it. It didn't hurt, just kind of tickled. I figured it was a bit of green bean skin or something and didn't worry too much about it. All day yesterday though, it started hurting more and more, and felt like I was getting poked in the back of the throat. So after realizing that I had probably swallowed a salmon bone,I perused the internet to figure out what the best way to get an annoying bone out of ones throat. The big thing I found was that most fish bones actually get stuck in the tonsils. To be more specific; they get stuck in the holes in your tonsils called 'Crypts'. So after trying to eat a big hunk of bread (a.k.a. Sonic cheesburger bun) and the pain not going away, I decided that when I got home I would take a peak to see if I could locate and remove the bone without going to the doctor.
The look on DaNece's face when I told her this was priceless. She recommended that I go to the doctor. I recommended that she hold my flashlight. After digging around in there with a pair of tweezers, i located the bone and after a couple of tries i managed to yank it out. HOOOORAAAAAAYYYYY, now I can swallow without getting stabbed!