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A good roll. That’s what you need to be a whitewater kayaker.

If you can’t ‘combat’ roll your kayak upright after flipping in the raging river (and you most definitely will flip), there is little chance for long-term kayaking fun. You will forever fear flipping rather than savor the karma of kayaking. No roll means expertise in ‘wet exiting’ and flailing for shore. Provided you survive the river’s tendency to smash you into boulders, pulling the kayak out of the river to drain multiple times a day is no picnic.

Learn to roll. If you learn nothing else, learn that.

So began a week-long course designed to train beginners in the art of kayaking.

After you’re geared up (kayak, paddle, life jacket, spraydeck and a helmet) and learn a few basic strokes, you begin your quest for the perfect roll. Everyday, over and over you try. You perfect one aspect only to unlearn another. You get three things right, only to miss the next one. Again and again it goes. Sometimes you make it, but mostly you don’t. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

But let’s digress.

The day before I ever thought of rolling, I flew into the Arcata/Eureka Airport (Northern California) and met my friend who had suggested sometime in the distant past that we take a kayaking class. Of course. Eureka welcomed us with a frigid and foggy 53 degrees Fahrenheit. Somehow, I had pictured heat and sunshine. I hadn’t even packed a jacket.

The weekly class can take up to 14 guests. We met two others at the airport and hopped into the waiting SUV for our 2-1/2 hour drive to Forks of Salmon, where the owners, instructors and cooks of the Otter Bar Lodge Kayak School awaited.

The trip went by quickly, and along the way we gained 50 degrees in temperature. This was more like it. As we wound down the driveway towards the lodge, one of nature’s best tableaus greeted us.

The school is next to the Salmon River, surrounded by a forest and blackberry vines. There is a lodge with a common room and a few guest rooms; five or so cabins spotted throughout the grounds; a garage for storing the kayaks, for a workshop and for the merchandise store; other garages and sheds for this and that; a private ‘cottage’ overlooking the river; and two small lakes for practicing in your kayak.

The owners, Peter and Kristy Sturges, greeted us, introduced the staff (more about the instructors and cooks later) and showed us to our new homes for the upcoming week. My abode, the Manzanita Cabin, was a short walk from the main lodge. Later I would meet my roommate as he arrived after a drive from Seattle.

After you’ve settled in to your cabin, the frogs are the first thing you notice. Croaking. Incessantly. The first thing you do is attack the blackberry bushes nearby. The second thing you do is to see how many frogs you can scare back into the ponds.

After dinner and a good night’s rest, we woke up Sunday morning fresh and ready for kayaking.

To be continued…

(Note: This is Part 1 of a series of posts.)

Lodge

Lodge

Manzanita Cabin and my home for a week

Manzanita Cabin and my home for a week

Hint: Those are kayaks

Hint: Those are kayaks

Pond #1 *

Pond #1 *

Pond #2

Pond #2

Be quiet #

Be quiet #

Geared up

Geared up

Ready to go! #

Ready to go! #

Pond time *

Pond time *

Paddling #

Paddling #

Time to roll #

Time to roll #

A good roll #

A good roll #

* These photos courtesy of Peter Sturges

# These photos courtesy of Maura Shea.

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I stormed the second weekend of the 2013 Coachella Music and Arts Festival (Indio, CA) last April. They couldn’t contain me, but they sure did try.

Check this space for all available knowledge on this topic. During the three days of rays, desert heat attire, libations, wind turbines, epic tunes and the artfully weird, I managed to partake in 25 different concert sets. 17 of those were acts I saw for the first time.

Here is my complete run down, a list of ‘Highs’, ‘Lows’ and ‘Regrets’ and some photo bombs! Listen up!

Friday’s concerts

  1. Poliçia (6 songs)
  2. Stars (5 songs)
  3. Metric (full set)
  4. Of Monsters and Men (full set)
  5. Palma Violets (5 songs)
  6. Sparks (full set)
  7. Beach House (3 songs)
  8. Yeah Yeah Yeahs (full set)
  9. Band of Horses (6 songs)
  10. The Stone Roses (full set)
  11. Foals (6 songs)
  12. blur (8 songs)
Saturday’s concerts
  1. Vintage Trouble (5 songs)
  2. The Savages (full set)
  3. Dropkick Murphy’s (full set)
  4. Violent Femmes (full set)
  5. The Make-Up (full set)
  6. Hot Chip (full set)
  7. The Postal Service (full set)
  8. Franz Ferdinand (full set)
  9. Phoenix (full set)

Sunday’s concerts

  1. The Lumineers (8 songs)
  2. Joris Voorn – DJ Set (2 songs)
  3. Maya Jane Coles -DJ Set (2 songs)
  4. Tame Impala (5 songs)
  5. Vampire Weekend (full set)
  6. OMD (full set)
Highs
  • Metric, Phoenix, Of Monsters and Men, blur, Vampire Weekend, Hot Chip, Dropkick Murphy’s
  • Strange art and exhibits. Notably the giant moving snail and a recycling T. Rex.
  • Concertgoers were presented with a quaint speakeasy to wile away precious minutes out of the sun. It came complete with dueling pianos, Red Bull sponsorship, staff and bartenders dressed as if we were living in 1923, a wall screen displaying tweets from the twits using the #speakeasy hash tag (like me), and a password to get in (hint: Dances with Bulls).
  • You could choose from three beer gardens. Two nestled the main stage – giving you ample opportunity to nurse your brew and vibe the music.
Lows
  • Heineken and Red Bull took on the major sponsor duties. This meant Red Bull was plentiful (gross) and the ONLY BEER AVAILABLE WAS HEINEKEN!!! Sorry for shouting, but I’m still vexed by that.
  • The giant snail went right up to the front of the stage before Of Monsters of Men and completely blocked the stage for half the crowd. Until it finally crawled away. Stupid snail.
  • Concert fatigue. There is a point in a day, when you’ve had it with music. That happened a couple of times, but I endured.

Three acts I most wanted to see pre-Coachella

  1. Metric
  2. Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  3. Postal Service
Five acts to check out post-Coachella
  1. Beach House
  2. Savages
  3. Tame Impala
  4. Poliçia
  5. Palma Violets
Pleasantly Surprised
  • Hot Chip: I’ve seen them once before and I only like a few of their songs. It wasn’t a show I was targeting to see, but they were full of energy and really got the crowd dancing. More so than many other acts.
  • Poliçia: I saw her at the Firefly Music Festival last year, but that show was nothing memorable. Glad I gave her a second chance. Playing in a smaller space and me being up close changed my perception. It also didn’t hurt she was the first act I saw at Coachella and had my full attention.

Slightly Disappointed

  • Yeah Yeah Yeahs: I enjoyed their show, but I was lukewarm on the new songs (need to listen to the new album) and it didn’t ‘live up’ to my pre-show hype. Good. Not great.
  • Band of Horses: I like a number of their songs. But never really had a sense of how they performed live. The lead singer was more like a goofy redneck trucker and didn’t endear me to their live show. They kept interrupting during one of my favorite songs by them (The Great Salt Lake), but my other favorite (Laredo) was spot on.
  • The Stone Roses: They seemed bored. Like me. (Interestingly enough, all three of these shows happened consecutively early Friday evening…while the best shows I saw happened earlier that afternoon…is my attitude a factor?)

Regrets

  • That I didn’t see Tegan and Sara as they played against blur.
  • That I didn’t check out Sigur Rios as they played against Phoenix.
  • That it took too long in the security line on Sunday (one too many intimate pat downs of the family jewels) so I missed Grimes.

Analysis

A good time. Lots of great bands and artists. Would I do it again? Yes. But given the expense, it would have to be another stellar line-up.

Photos

Welcome to Coachella

Welcome to Coachella

Map of the world

Map of the world

Power!

Power!

Signings

Signings

Poliçia

Poliçia

Recycling T-Rex

Recycling T-Rex

Vintage Trouble

Vintage Trouble

Crazy snail

Crazy snail

Metric

Metric

Heineken Dome

Heineken Dome

Get out of the way!

Get out of the way!

Of Monsters and Men

Of Monsters and Men

No drugs

No drugs

Me! A twit, tweeting!

Me! A twit, tweeting!

Main stage

Main stage

Do Lab

Do Lab

Out

Out

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In honor of my recent trip to Indio, California for the 2013 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, here is a random playlist from many of the bands and artists I saw.

Coachella Playlist

  1. Nobody Told Me – Vintage Trouble
  2. Last of the Summer Wine – Palma Violets
  3. Heads Will Roll – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  4. Sick Muse – Metric
  5. She Will – Savages
  6. Lay Your Cards Out – Poliçia
  7. Laredo – Band of Horses
  8. Such Great Heights – The Postal Service
  9. Don’t Tear Us Apart – Dropkick Murphy’s
  10. Over and Over – Hot Chip
  11. Gone Daddy Gone – Violent Femmes
  12. No You Girls – Franz Ferdinand
  13. Love Spreads – The Stone Roses
  14. There’s No Other Way – blur
  15. Mountain Sound – Of Monsters and Men
  16. Stubborn Love – The Lumineers
  17. Enola Gay – OMD
  18. Elephant – Tame Impala
  19. Fixed – Stars
  20. Walcott – Vampire Weekend

Encore

  1. 1901 – Phoenix

Coachella

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Happy Holidays. I hope you had a (insert hyperbole here) year. Wait, you say, isn’t the time to give season greetings past?!?! It’s well into 2013 and we have better things to do.

To that I say, this letter has been strategically timed to arrive at the exact moment you least want it but most need it. This has nothing to do with procrastination nor laziness on my part. All part of the plan. Enough pleasantries.

Seven years ago (2006) the first Christmas letter snuck under your tree (mistletoe?) and regaled all that would listen with a smug, self-centered yet snarky update of my year. The holiday greeting card equivalent of fruitcake. No one wants it, but everyone keeps looking at it wondering who will be the first to take a bite. The subsequent four years didn’t get any better. If anything, I baked a fruitier cake with each passing year. Last year I took a sabbatical (approved word for lazy). This year will be different. It has to be. Fruitcake goes bad eventually.

Let’s journey together and reminisce about (a robust) 2012. I alphabetized this letter so it would be easier to skip ahead to letter Z and get back to your regularly scheduled program. I added some color to make the blurbs more festive. They need it.

Arch – As in the Gateway Arch in St. Louis. I attended an extravagant wedding in Biehle, Missouri (1-1/2 hours south of St. Louis). The wedding combined both Catholic and Hindu traditions into one unique (but long!) ceremony. Then a bottomless bar and food at the family ‘house’ (with two lakes, woods, a tree fort, a tractor museum, a train for kids and a ‘gazebo’ – read: small house overlooking a lake) made for a fine reception. Oh and I did go to the top of the Gateway Arch on the way to the airport.

Bangkok – I keep finding myself here. What to do? Ascend to the rooftop bars and restaurants (Sirocco, Above 11, Long Table and more) for breathtaking city views, food and drink? Okay. Cruise on the Chao Praya river, gliding past Wat Arun, the Grand Palace and more temples while feasting buffet-style, snapping blurry photos and dancing? Check. A foot massage? Why not. Eat the delicious and spicy food – whether on the street or in a restaurant? Yeah. Hit the Chatuchak Weekend Market and get lost among the 5,000 stalls and shops? Sure. Try a VIP movie experience of Argo? You’re welcome, Ben. Hoist pints of Singha and Chang beers? Done. And done.

Cabins – A cabin needs a name. I gravitated to an assortment of cabins this year. Whether it overlooked the Columbia River Gorge (The Cabin in Mosier), or nestled two miles into the woods of Northern Virginia (Myron Glaser Cabin), or was replete with Christmas tree and decorations only minutes drive from Washington’s White Pass Ski Resort (Mountain Mist Chalet), or kept the Northern California summer nights and frogs at bay (Manzanita Cabin), I was there.

DerechoLike a low blow to the groin, the storm known as a derecho hit Washington, D.C. in June with furious determination. Not even Hurricane Sandy matched its destructive force (I speak only of DC). Crazy winds. Downed trees. Crushed cars. Flying trash cans. That type of day.

Extra Innings – For those in the know (by now…maybe you?), I am questing to see a baseball game in every Major League ballpark. Marlins Park (Miami), Citi Field (New York), O.2 Coliseum (Oakland) and AT&T Park (San Francisco) all claimed my cash and attention this year. Only nine stadiums left.

FireflyDover, Delaware gave us the first annual Firefly Music Festival in July. With headliners like Jack White, The Killers and The Black Keys, this had a fierce cacophony of rock and roll that a seven nation army couldn’t hold back. Three days of bands, beer, food and camping. And after a short respite to the beach to re-charge, more bands and beer.

Goals (Random) – I was bored one day. Hard to imagine, but so. I concocted a plan to do a new ‘random goal’ each month. I went 5-2 (success/failure) in the seven months I did it. Then the ideas dried up and I woke as if from a dream…with a tattoo of a wiener dog on my ankle. Or was that just a real wiener dog nosing my ankle to go outside and stop messing around? See the Goals.

Halloumi – Enter any restaurant in Cyprus and chances are you will find fried cheese (halloumi) on the menu. Order it. That’s the best advice I can give you. Besides gorging on cheese, I explored the beaches of Larnaca and Limassol and wandered the city of Nicosia with the help of a local. I avoided crossing into the Turkish side of the country because I feared there would be no halloumi.

Infiltrator – Let’s call my sister an ‘infiltrator’ after visiting DC for the first time in May. I made her ride the Capital Bikeshare bikes all over the city and tag along to two softball games. We visited many places and other things happened. It ended well. She survived to tell the tale. I hope.

Jazz (All That)A weekend in New York should include a baseball game, a jazz concert, more live music, bar crawling, and a wander about to see such sights as the Empire State Building, the new 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero, and Central Park. Also, don’t forget to meander the warrens and streets of Chelsea, Brooklyn, SoHo and Midtown. Eat as much as possible. Maybe some Italian? Or Korean? Or Thai? Doesn’t matter, just eat it and enjoy.

Kayaking – For one week I learned how to white water kayak (in the middle of nowhere Northern California). Our river time was on the Klamath River, but the Otter Bar Lodge Kayak School rested next to the Salmon River. After a long day on the river, there was time to snorkel with the grown and fingerling salmon, cliff jump from dizzying heights, eat amazing food, imbibe homemade margaritas and play Settlers of Catan. Then back on the water. No time to rest.

ListsEvery year I make a bunch of lists to commemorate my best in movies, books, sports and music. They are popular with the ‘me’ set. You can read them too, but it’s better if you just get this letter over and do something fun.

Miami – I hopped down to South Beach in Miami for a weekend. Mission: See a baseball game in the Marlins’ new stadium, eat lots of Cuban food and generally make a nuisance of myself. What happens in South Beach, stays in Vegas…oops, that’s not right…let’s just say, I succeeded.

No more! – Is this never-ending Christmas letter finished yet? Nope. Twelve letters in the alphabet to go…brace yourself.

One Day HikeA minor hike done in a single day. Okay, it’s actually 50 kilometers (or 31.1 miles), but who’s complaining? I finished this mostly flat trek in just over 9 hours. Intact. Yet not without pain.

Paris (Gay) – Cue traditional French music…opening scene: an American (me) climbing the Eiffel Tower. Wandering aimlessly in the maze that is the Louvre. Walking about the city, capturing photographic evidence of the Arc de Triomphe and other famous landmarks. Floating gracefully down the Seine river (boat included).  Nibbling $4 macaroons and chewing cheese and butter baguettes. Taking in the bustle and toy sailboats of the Jardin de Luxembourg. Closing scene: a bewildered American in a wine and cheese infused stupor, slumped at a sidewalk café, never to leave. Music fades…

Quad biking – My work has a hard time avoiding the Lukenya Getaway for meetings. It’s secluded, and far outside of the city limits of Nairobi, Kenya. There are actual wild animals roaming around – giraffes, wildebeests, zebras, gazelles and more – that you can see as you jog or walk down the dirt roads nearby. One day we took some quad bikes for a spin in the bush. At least one person (not me) crashed into a tree…

Running – My favorite use of running is to escape a mother bear protecting its cub. My second favorite use is to not run at all. Sadly, I didn’t get to use it for either purpose this year. I did run the Semper Fi 5K and a number of other 5Ks on my own. I also tried running more in general (to my chagrin), often running along the National Mall to the Lincoln Memorial. The beauty of the Mall at night makes it hard to complain. But I will.

Sommelier – I had quite a time gallivanting about for tastings and tours at wineries in California, Washington and Oregon. I toured Napa Valley for the first time, hitting such wineries as: Rutherford Ranch Winery, V. Sattui Winery, Franciscan Oakville Estates and Andretti Winery before hopping on the ferry back to San Francisco. I also hit a few wineries in Washington state near Leavenworth: Wedge Mountain Winery, Cascadia Winery and Icicle Ridge Winery.

Tea (Improper) – In England, I improperly raised my pinky finger while drinking a spot of tea. The Brits gave me a wide berth. Yet when I wasn’t drinking tea, I jaunted about London just before the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee (celebrating 60 years as the Queen!) started. I also spent some time in the (robust) towns of Northampton and Woking, enjoying such places as the Racecourse and the War of the Worlds statue.

UDub (Alumni) – I played three sports with our University of Washington Alumni – DC chapter in the Capital Alumni Network (CAN). Flag football, volleyball and softball. Our flag football team did well, advancing to the third round of the playoffs. Our volleyball team did okay but with our softball team – let’s just say, we had fun. I was also voted to be the ‘Sports Chair’ on our DC Alumni chapter board. We also played volleyball during spring, summer AND fall with the Metro Sports League. I did not receive any varsity letters…sniff.

Victory (Sweet) – The Seattle Seahawks had quite a year. For the first time since I moved to Washington, D.C., I was able to attend more than one game. I saw three games at CenturyLink Field in Seattle. They won all three, including a terrific beat down of the eventual Super Bowl losers, San Francisco 49ers (42-13). I left hoarse, while riding my high horse. 

Whirlyball – A weekend trip to Toronto to honor the dearly departed from bachelorhood (also known as a stag party in Canadian parlance) saw four rousing rounds of whirlyball (like lacrosse but on bumper cars – look it up), Japanese izakaya and a jovial amount of adult beverages. Back to whirlyball…my team won all four rounds!

XenophileI travel a fair bit (if you skipped to end of this letter, just take my word for it) and mostly I enjoy it. Here are some stats from 2012: Countries visited = 6. US states visited = 9. Flight segments =35. Airports =21. Time away from home – 2-1/2 months (roughly). Cavity searches = 0.

YosemiteCar camping is all the rage. Just don’t do it in Yosemite National Park. The Park Rangers will find you. And shine the bright light of reality in your face. And then boot you from the park. After spending a night in my car (outside the park), I persisted the next morning and hiked the High Sierra Loop Trail, where I took magical photos of Vernal and Nevada falls, as well as Half Dome, Liberty Cap and anything else that got in my way. Magical in the robustest sense of the word. 

ZymurgyI don’t always drink beer, but when I do I prefer…wait a second…I do always drink beer! Except when at a winery. Or in Paris. This year I enjoyed many types of beer at many places. For example, at the first Living Social Beer Fest in DC. All you can drink in three hours from twenty-five breweries (each offering 2-3 selections). I also visited the following breweries: Deschutes (OR), Lost Coast (CA), 21st Amendment (CA), Triple Rock (CA) and Magnolia (CA). Burp.

End transmission.

Bonus: My Favorite Blog Posts of the Year (so you can re-read them, of course)

  1. Paris in Photos and Other Moveable Feasts 
  2. Yosemite National Park Survival Tips
  3. Keep on Food Truckin’
  4. 25 for May: Firsts (In Hindsight)
  5. D.C., Which Photographs Well
  6. Reflections, and Other Reasons Mom Washed Out My Mouth With Soap

2013-03-05_1656

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You’ve decided to visit Yosemite National Park. Good choice. You may be smarter than you look.

But to that point, why are you reading this blog post? There are libraries and servers and wikipedias filled with much more useful information on Yosemite.

As long as you’re here…

Survival Tip 1: Plan ahead

Do research and make a plan before you go. Pick the right season when water is still cascading over the famous waterfalls and Mirror Lake is not Sand Meadows. Or you could take my approach: arrive at San Francisco airport, rent a car, drive many hours, pay the fee, explore the Yosemite Valley visitor grocery store, buy snacks, pour over maps, make hiking plans and look for a place to sleep. But make sure you know in advance that there is…

Survival Tip 2: No car camping in the park

I did know that. I wanted to test the theory. Car camping is the fancy way of saying ‘sleeping in your car without paying for a campsite’. Within minutes of parking away from the grocery store parking lot, a Park Ranger was shining a flashlight in my face and ‘encouraging’ me to get out of Dodge. He wasn’t rude, but he wasn’t particularly nice either. Probably because he has to deal with my kind far too often. So, if you learn nothing else today…don’t try to car camp in Yosemite. They will find you.

Survival Tip 3: Go early!

Because I had to drive 25 minutes out of the park and ‘car camp’ on the side of the road, I was highly motivated to avoid sleeping in the driver’s seat for long. The best advice I can give you about Yosemite (if you want to hike), is to go early. I was back in the park and buying coffee by 6:30am and on the trail by 7:00am. I cannot stress this enough. GO EARLY! Why, you ask? Because starting around 11:00am or noon, the apocalypse starts. Slow walkers, dilly-dallyers, shufflers, idlers and their ilk. No, not zombies, but families. Extended families. And whole family trees all descend on the park at once.

When there are but a few people out hiking, this is one of the most beautiful places you can imagine. You can really find the tranquility of nature. If you are a hiker or just enjoy nature, then you know what I mean.

Survival Tip 4: Park and use the shuttle

Yosemite has a very efficient shuttle bus system. You park and then find one of 21 hop-on hop-off stops in the Yosemite Valley region. I explored much of this area after a 8.5 mile hike on the High Sierra Loop Trail. I witnessed every angle of Vernal and Nevada falls.

Then I took the bus a couple stops over and hiked a mile to Mirror Lake, which was completely dry…then the bus took me to Yosemite Falls, which had almost no water falling…it did allow me to pick my way over massive boulders all the way up to the base and dip my feet in the pools of water.

Next time I want to climb to the top of Half Dome and explore some of the other regions of the park. I’d suggest going earlier than August.

Survival Tip 5: Take a camera

So you can capture the moment. Like this…

Vernal Fall, Yosemite National Park

Vernal Fall, Yosemite National Park

Nevada Fall

Nevada Fall

Liberty Cap and Nevada Fall

Liberty Cap and Nevada Fall

Liberty Cap

This way

Half Dome and Liberty Cap

Half Dome and Liberty Cap

Half Dome

Half Dome

Mirror Lake - minus the water

Mirror Lake – minus the water

Yosemite Falls - minus the water

Yosemite Falls – minus the water

Keeping cool

Keeping cool

Perfect Balance

Perfect Balance

Three Brothers

Three Brothers

El Capitan

El Capitan

Shadow leaf

Shadow leaf

peace

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My random goal for August is very simple. To go on vacation.

Two weeks worth. That seems like enough of a goal for this month.

What will I do?

Take a week-long white water river kayaking course in the middle of nowhere northern California.

Explore and eat my way through San Francisco.

Sip my way through Napa Valley.

Trek about Yosemite National Park.

Catch baseball games at AT&T Park (SF) and the O.o Coliseum (Oakland).

Peace

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When confronted with copious quantities of snow in every direction, one may wonder what the best ways to enjoy it are. Here are a few ideas:

Blizzard Bowl ’08   As the New York Jets battled the Seattle Seahawks at Qwest Field, an epic blizzard waged war on the fans. We were able to fight back by throwing snowballs at each other (e.g. Jets fans) and the onto the field (e.g. Jets players). That it was also cold and wet is hardly worth mentioning as the Seahawks defeated the Jets, 13-3. P.S. I was not among the snowball throwers!

360° Pirouettes   Minding my own business on Highway 410 in Sumner, WA, while blazing through snow and ice, I suddenly found myself struggling to keep control of my non-snowmobile (car). Then I implemented a complete wild 360° and miraculously finished in the same lane, going in the same direction. But not before a big truck slammed on its brakes behind me. Fresh underwear not included.

Night Skiing   A few hours of skiing at Boreal Ski Resort in California, should relax one. Just stay on the lighted runs…they don’t like it when you stray.

Tire Chains and Mountain Passes   Spending 2-1/2 hours to cross Donner Pass, California in chains is always a good way to enjoy the snow. Or not.

Ice slipping and Photo Ops   Watch your step while trying to take scenic photographs of the pristine Emerald Bay on Lake Tahoo. Those that had come before, turned the area into an ice rink of absolute slipperiness. But, as we all know,  any good photo op entails a bit of danger.

Xmas Snowballs for Dad   Possibly the best single use of snow is the making of snowballs. The best single use of any snowball is throwing it at someone. The best single way to anger your Dad is for him to be the target of said snowballs while he tries to free his car from the deep snow. He gets anger management courses for Christmas next year.

Snow stories? Do share.

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