Saturday, September 19, 2015

snorkelling in Fort Bragg

Last weekend, we went on our first family camping trip. We went with our neighbors upto Fort Bragg, an area I've been meaning to check out for a while. It was a perfect time of year for it.

After driving around a bit, we stopped at the Botanical gardens and had a look around.

It's very well laid out in a very pretty spot, all the way to the water.

Seems like Maddy is cool with the camping idea.

The next morning we went and tried some snorkeling, I was happy that my wetsuit still fit :) We went in at a village called Elk.

Going out to explore around Gunderson rock. The weather was perfect, and our timing excellently coincided with Low tide and the morning light.

I took my GoPro out with me, but although it is waterproof it is not an underwater lens. All the pictures were blurry, so I decided to artzify  a few. 

The underwater scenery was vibrant, and while the visibility was not the best, it was probably well above average for this location.

I imagine most of the year its not very nice or easy to dive here as it is very exposed.

I'm keen to get back in the water a bit more regularly with a decent camera, or lens at least.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

murals in san francisco

Almost a year ago now, Heidi and I were in Mexico City, at the Diego Museum. In there I read there were more Diego murals in San Francisco, than his home town of Mexico City. Since it's so close I thought it would be fun for us to go see some for a day trip. While looking up where exactly to find them - not all of them are seeable on the weekends, I discovered this website :  Murals of San Francisco . So I planned a full tour. And as best plans tend to go, we got about 1/4 of the way round. We started with a personal favorite of mine. Actually on the Chase building in Daly City.

The next on tour was on the way to a friends house, we visited.

Stumbled passed this one where we parked, quite colorful and hard to miss.

Origin plan was to go to Coit tower next, but it was really foggy, So we decided to walk around the Castro where we already were. The street art is less mural, and more political statement, though Diego himself was quite political, his art was more subtle.

I can't say I understood all of them though, with art I think the viewer can enjoy it in the way they see it.

Some stand out from the rest of course. Either to a generality or personal impression.

Sometimes the message is stronger than the quality.

or maybe just abstract...

This on was my favorite, pretty sure it is meant to be Carlos Santana.

Somehow I had never been up Twin Peaks before we stopped there on the way out of town. Good view of San Francisco and Golden gate bridge.

So in the end, pretty far from the intended Diego style, like this one on Dolores and 18th. We'll hit Coit tower another time.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Mt Lewis

Returning from Salt Lake City, Wayne, me, Glen and Lauren decided to try fly Mt Lewis. Thanks Zac for the waypoints. While the mountain is unlikely to win any scenery of the year awards, I think at almost 10,000ft it is the highest launch I've flown from.

The wind was light and variable which at the peak of a 10k mountain was eery.

Glen launched first, we watched as he ran and ran and ran into ~7mph slight right cross. Wayne and I waited and scoped out other launch possibilities but ended up taking the same launch and waiting what seemed for ever for a good cycle.

The climb out was pretty easy, but the thermals were not well behaved. They topped out just 3k over.

Which was surprisingly little wiggle room for glide. We flew south, looking for some scenery.

Didn't find a whole lot...

So with the long drive ahead we corkscrewed down.

And all landed totally different directions. One thing I noticed on descent were what I thought were water lines, (channels water would run or drain off in) I look at these for slope indication (you don't want to land downhill), anyway these didn't seem to make sense. After I landed I noticed shoeless hoof prints. Ah wild horses! of course. You can see one such channel to my right. 

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Dinosaur awards and more hiking.

There would be no more flying in this meet, results can be found here. It was great to see so many new (to me) faces, I would say up and comers, but as you can see they are flying so much better than that! Well done Kelly, Beau and Nathan. A huge thank you to Terry and Chris Reynolds for putting on the meet, G.W. Meadows for running it, and J.Z. helping out too. Despite the weather I think everyone had a great meet, safe, fun and educational and incredibly scenic.

At the last minute Glen was passed by a very slim margin by Zac for the big win open class. Replays of the race remain viewable on airtribune : I am still laughing at how far offtrack I got day 3

Wayne and I took one last hike in Dinosaur on the way out of town.

The Sound of Silence trail we'd seen the day before looked too good to pass up.

The sound of silence was actually thunderous, standing on the ancient sand dune was not a great idea. But look at the layers ! Very cool. We were back in the car just as the rain started. Until next time Colorado :)

Friday, September 4, 2015

Dinosaur Bones

It would not be right to go to Dinosaur and not see the world famous dinosaur bones discovery. The theory goes that there was a flood or sequence of floods and this river bend happened to collect the dead animals which got covered by sand and fossilized. The river bed was then turned on its side by plate tectonics. You can read more about it here : A shelter was built around the remaining fossils, which is now the museum.

What we get to see here is just a fraction (~1/6 ?) of the original cliff. Other pieces were sawn up and shipped to museums around the world. Still very impressive though, and somehow more moving when still connected to the earth. Especially when you can recognise the pieces of  these beasts.

Walking around outside the sandstone colors are vivid.

I'm not very good at identifying snakes, other than "hey look! SNAKE". I think this is a Glossy Snake ?

Split Mountain, celebrating diversity.