Thursday, April 30, 2009

Mountain Biking Around Moab & Canyonlands National Park

Buck Canyon Overlook, Canyonlands National Park
Lafayette, CO - It is now week six since my surgery and I'm going to try my damnedest to not talk about this dang knee. Let's talk about Moab instead. What started out as a climbing trip out to Indian Creek, slowly morphed into a mountain biking trip to Moab. Jake bailed because his buddy Rudy didn't want to drive that far and I'm sure the idea of following someone up some tricky routes in Rifle, CO didn't sound all that bad (hope you guys didn't get rained out!) Then Tanya, Lisa, Drew, Toni and Tom decided to join us. Glen and Josh were already out there. Lisa S. was in, then out. Then Pat jumped in our car at the last minute. Bikes on the top, we headed for the desert. Boy was it nice to get out and about again. I was feeling a little cooped up due to the knee that I'm not supposed to be talking about.

Suwei mountain biked both days, doing the Sovereign Trail on Saturday and Baby Steps on Sunday. On Saturday I ran a shuttle for the bikers, then on Sunday I headed out to Canyonlands National Park to be a tourist and take some photos. We had a little bit of rain here and there, but overall it was a very, very nice weekend. Here are some pics:

Mountain Biking North of Moab
From the top: Tanya, Karl, Toni, Lisa, Pat, Drew, & Suwei

At Camp in Castleton Valley

Grand View Point Overlook, Canyonlands National Park

Here's a link to the slideshow:

Mountian Biking Around Moab & Canyonlands National Park, UT

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A Spot of History - Malawi, 1995 to 1997

Lafayette, CO - Suwei and I got back from our big trip in the fall of 2007. Since that time I've been telling myself that I would like to use some my free time to go back and organize some of my old pictures and letters. Well, living in Colorado (or anywhere else for that matter) you find that there are a lot more interesting things to keep you busy than sorting through old files... like going places and taking more pictures. Just so happens that this damn knee has slowed me up enough to cause me to re-address my old, lofty goals of preserving some ofthe old pictures and stories from my past. So today, while Suwei is up the hill taking full advantage of our spring snowstorms, I'm going to post my first, "History" entry.

For this one, we're going way back to my Peace Corps days in Malawi. Just before I left for Africa, I bought my first SLR camera, a Cannon EOS. I shot tons of photos while I was there and put most of them in a scrapbook when I got back. The photos I'm posting here, were scanned into a computer by a graphic artist friend of mine, while I was living down in Las Vegas. I used them for a slide-show presentation I did for the Las Vegas Mountaineers Club back in 2004.

But that's not all.... While I was living in Malawi I made a point of writing home to all my friends almost every month. It was like blogging, but much more archaic. I would type out a letter and mail it to my Mom. Three weeks later it would arrive in California, she would make copies and distribute it my mail to everyone who cared about what I was up to. Going back and reading them now, just makes me smile. The stories still crack me up. Anyway, Since I don't have near anything as interesting as Malawi to blog about these days, I thought I'd throw them up here and see if anyone is interested in checking them out. Don't get me wrong, I don't expect anyone will want to read through all 21 letters. It's a little over 2 years worth of experiences in Malawi, long before Madonna put the country back on the map. Anyway... if you want to check them out, they're here. Click on each page to see a larger version big enough to actually read. Scroll down to the bottom if you just want to check out the slide-show. Enjoy.

Kids posing Jackie Chan style in Lilongwe

Letter #1 - July 19th, 1995

Letter #2 - August 15th, 1995

Gathering Firewood, Zomba Plateau

Letter #3 - September 16th, 1995

Nkhata Bay

Letter #4 - October 17th, 1995

Letter #5 - November 11th, 1995

Letter #6 - December 20th, 1995

Me and my new friends atop a hill overlooking Zomba

Letter #7 - January 19th, 1996

Letter #8 - February, 19th, 1996

Letter #9 - March 15th, 1996

Letter #10 - April 16th, 1996

Sunset at The Nchisi Forest Reserve

Letter #11 - June 3rd, 1996

The Mulanje Bus Station / Tea Fields & Mt. Mulanje

Nyika National Park to Livingstonia Mission Hike

Letter #12 - July 16th, 1996

Climbing in Lilongwe

Letter #13 - August 20th, 1996

Sunset aboard the Ilala

Letter #14 - September 15th, 1996

Letter #15 - October 17th, 1996

Letter #16 - November 10th, 1996

Letter #17 - December 14th, 1996

Hiking the Mulanje Massif

Letter #18 - January 16th, 1997


Letter #19 - February 19th, 1997

Letter #20 - March 23rd, 1997

Letter #21 - June 7th, 1997

Hiking near Chongoni
Here is the link for the slide-show:

Malawi - 1995 to 1997