Sunday, September 30, 2012

Sangha friends

A weekend stop in Nevada City to visit and meditate with friends.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Mount Lassen, CA

I love the west - space as far and you can see in every direction.  Lots of room.  But not much water. Incredibly dry this time of year.  Perfect campground almost completely to ourselves at Big Pine.  Spent the days exploring the lava tubes, the "spatter" cones and the national park, not to mention a good bit of time just reading.  Starting to slow down.  Perfect.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Lakeview, OR then to CA

Out of Steen's Mountain and across a small chunk of Nevada and back to Oregon at Lakeview for the night.  Great small town.  Unfortunately the Indian Village Restaurant was closed for the day.  Classic Americana with an amazing collection of arrow heads.

Saturday, September 22, 2012


South Steen’s Campground.  Headed out for an overnight backpack into Big Indian Gorge.  First time with a real pack on in a long time.  Hoping this is a shakedown for more in the near future.  Long stroll into the first creek crossing and the canyon proper.  Once in the canyon, much sage and few obvious campsites.  J having real problems with the pack load – too much weight down low.  Finally found a good campsite by the creek.  Got the water bottles filled and us into the tent just before the rain started.  Sun back out for dinner.  Stove worked great.  Very efficient with boiling water and cooking.  Creek was moss covered in the bottom of this dry sage canyon - another world completely.  Thunderstorm in the very early morning.  Up @ 8:30 - watered up and ate.  Light rain for the hike out.  Redistributed J’s load and the pack much better.  Nice hike out.

Thursday, September 20, 2012


Steen’s Mountain.  My birthday.  Nice place to spend the 1/365 of the year when you can claim it is all about you.  After a brief chat with the rattlesnake that was passing through our camp we head off to drive to the top of the mountain.  Amazing day but hazy in the distance.  On a clear day you really can see forever – today maybe only till the middle of next week.  We meet another couple from Portland.  Seem like interesting folks and much like us.  How does one manage the time to stop and get to know people like this and still do what you think you want to do?

Always in awe of nature here.  The sky meets the earth so gently and at the same time so aggressively.  Kiger Canyon, Little Blitzen Canyon, Big Indian Canyon  – all dredged out by glaciers in eons past.  So much sky it aches.  Out in front of the east face is the Alvord desert.  A mile down to the flat desert floor.  We can see 15 to 30 miles in every direction and are looking down probably no more than 50 people.  How anything survives is a mystery, yet much life exists.  We climb to the top and watch the sunset.
Driving back down the mountain in the twilight we hit a deer – om mani peme hung.  Life is very fragile.  Hard lesson in impermanence.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Steen's Mountain

Into Burns for a night at a motel for showers and internet connection.  Nice to be able to take care of so much online.  Then on to Steen’s Mountain.  Successfully installed at a campsite at Page Springs outside of Frenchglen.  Campground is packed but we shouldn’t be surprised as this is the best time of year to be here.  Sunny and warm during the day with clear blue skies.  Mild nights and tons of stars.

And that’s another thing I don’t understand – people that come to the woods for a camping experience and then sit under a Coleman lantern all night and never see the stars.  Are people really afraid of the dark?  There can be little as truly beautiful as the night sky far from city lights.  But if you sit under a blazing lantern you will never see it.  Bright lights and generators – two things that should be banned from all campgrounds.  If you can’t live without them, maybe you should consider staying home.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Big Creek

After two nights we headed to the south side for warmer, more open prairie vistas.  We moved to Big Creek Campground in the Logan Valley.  Open skies and prairie surrounded by mountains.  We definitely got the trifecta of sun, sky and mountains. 

What we also got were hunters.  Pretty much a camp full of ‘em.  Bow season is open for several unfortunate animals.  Lots of guys (and gals) in camo running around talking about what they got or what they didn’t.  At least bow hunting levels the playing field somewhat – hard to get close enough to something to hit it with an arrow.
Hunters are a pretty polite breed usually.  Biggest complaint is about the damn generators.  Seems everyone requires electricity even in the wild.  God forbid you not get satellite TV or even have to rely on battery power.  And why should you when you can annoy everyone in camp by running your generator.  At least most turn them off by 10pm.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


Started with some R&R camping in the Strawberry Mountains in eastern Oregon.  Warm days, cool nights, clear skies.  September is great.  Day hikes up to Strawberry Lake and falls.  Almost no one on the trail but several cars in the trail head lot so someone is up there hiking.  Nice to put one foot in front of the other and just keep going.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

A quick chronology

Gave notice at work on June 1, 2012, 

Quit full time work on July 1,
Down to one project (as a consultant) on August 1,
Rented out the house – Free and on the road Sept 1.
Oh, did I mention we got married on August 25th?
I figure you should take some time off every twenty years or so whether you need to or not.  That is just what we are doing.  Too much rat race, too little time to figure out what we should be figuring out.  Not ready to retire but ready to stop going crazy for a while.  You can’t live intentionally if you don’t have time to figure out what you intend to do.