ziphius

all messages by user

1/31/2012
Topic:
NOAA Radiosonde Found

ziphius
ziphius
That's a very cool find. I've never found one! I work for NOAA, though not in the Weather Service portion of the agency. Definitely mail that thing in... you will be advancing science! Congrats on the find.
2/6/2012
Topic:
NOAA Radiosonde Found

ziphius
ziphius
Better yet, if you are in the vicinity of any NOAA National Weather Service Office, you could probably drop it off with them. There's a local San Diego office in Rancho Bernardo:

11440 W Bernardo Ct # 230 San Diego, CA 92127
(858) 675-8700

You can always call one of the forecasters (they are friendly) and describe what you have. They should be excited to receive it. - Jim
2/6/2012
Topic:
California Juniper south of Sombrero Peak

ziphius
ziphius
One of my favorite things is to find tortured, windswept, bonsai-like native plants anywhere in San Diego. Took this photo yesterday in the McCain Valley Conservation area. Enjoy. - Jim

edited by ziphius on 12/13/2015
2/7/2012
Topic:
California Juniper south of Sombrero Peak

ziphius
ziphius
Thanks. This was shot late afternoon, around 3 I think. I underexposed a stop and also used a flash to brighten the tree at the same time. smile
2/7/2012
Topic:
Carrizo Gorge Canyon - DeAnza to Egg Mtn

ziphius
ziphius
Awesome photos and play-by-play! Toast
2/10/2012
Topic:
NOAA Radiosonde Found

ziphius
ziphius
Great story Daren! Thumbs Up

Those guys are always happy (at any NWS office it seems) to show people around. Wow, a 5% return rate... I wonder what the return rate is for sondes that have been 'at liberty' for over 10 years though! They are a good bunch and some of the best computer modelers in the world work at NWS (despite how we all make fun of weather forecasters being 'wrong' all the time). One of the reasons that their models are so good is that they have a TON of data. Your contribution means one more data point! - Jim
2/10/2012
Topic:
NOAA Radiosonde Found

ziphius
ziphius
dsefcik wrote:
Speaking of data points, one thing I learned that I found pretty interesting is that another data point collection mechanism is that they have collection devices on airplanes like UPS, FedEx, etc. These planes are flying 24/7/365 around the world sending data back to them. This seemed like a major contributor to the system.


Wow, didn't know that! Great stuff. - Jim

smile
2/14/2012
Topic:
From the Unpublished Series

ziphius
ziphius
Yikes, that sounds like an adventure! The section of metal roofing wrapped around the pole way up high is worth a 1000 words, heh? I'm a newbie, what is the BARC? - Jim
2/17/2012
Topic:
Night Sky Photos from Little Blair

ziphius
ziphius
Nice photos! Love the ant. smile
2/20/2012
Topic:
Red Top via Inner Pasture via Agua Caliente

ziphius
ziphius
Spent Sat. and Sun. in Inner Pasture, Red Top, etc. I'm crazy about the Inner Pasture:



View from camp:



Practice, practice, practice:



Is this a bonafide pottery shard?




Red Top summit with sun just hitting it in the morning:



I'm going to consider Red Top my "mid-life crisis hike". 47 is approaching fast.



This was a hard scramble! I left my tent at 6:45 am and was able to climb Red Top in shade the whole way. The view out toward Canebrake from Red Top:



Morteros, I think they were in Moonlight Canyon, just before you reach the Inner Pasture:



Lenticular cloud that formed early Sunday afternoon. It grew immense by 3 pm and kept me shaded on my way back to Agua Caliente.



Ocotillo in Inner Pasture.



On the way back down Moonlight Canyon, Whale Peak in the distance?



Oh, in keeping with the tradition of what I have seen and read on this forum (which is great), I had 3 mylar balloon sightings, only two of which I could reach to retrieve. The desert is a little cleaner! Thanks for hosting a great forum gang! - Jim
edited by surfponto on 11/26/2012
2/20/2012
Topic:
Anza Borrego Wildflower Report ?

ziphius
ziphius
Baja Sonora looks pretty lush compared to ABDSP right now! I saw a lot of 'micro-blooms' in the Inner Pasture over the weekend, but no big areas of coverage, just isolated blooms. The exception being Ocotillo, which were starting to bloom almost everywhere I looked. Also some nice blooms of white-flowered Ceanothus far up in the canyons, where there is a bit more water. smile
2/20/2012
Topic:
Red Top via Inner Pasture via Agua Caliente

ziphius
ziphius
Daren,

Thanks for the comments and confirmation on the pottery. One guy did Red Top via Agua Caliente a bit more efficiently than me (12 miles RT), his link is here:
http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=924453

Including minor unintended deviations from my topo and some other bushwacking inefficiencies, I ended up doing 14.6 miles RT. 5.75 hrs moving and 5 hrs of stoppage time, according to my GPS. So, your estimate of 7 miles from S2 to the base of Red Top is in that neighborhood RT-wise. I paid 5$ a day to park in the day-use area of Agua Caliente Park. I splurged for 2 days just so I wouldn't have to rush to get back. It was nice because I got to park near the picnic ground within view of the ranger kiosk where I felt my car was safe. There is also the added bonus of being able to 'check in' with the ranger and let them know when you expect to be back. They will mark your parking pass with your intended destination and expected time back out. Since I was solo on this trip, I especially wanted someone to know where I was. Easy to break an ankle on this ascent / descent, hard trip for an old guy like me. I didn't see your helo on Sat. I arrived at Agua Caliente around 11:30 and got to my camp at Inner Pasture around 2 pm. Didn't make the trek up to Red Top until Sun. morning. I've never been to the Crawford Ranch / Canebrake area. What's the story behind the huge sand berm? Natural feature? Seasonal water dam?

Jim
<em>edited by ziphius on 2/20/2012</em>
2/20/2012
Topic:
ABDSP Via Helicopter

ziphius
ziphius
Awesome trip Daren. Great pictographs and nice find on the rock shelter. I wonder how many 'unfound' pictograph sites there are in ABDSP... Your 'cactus or some sort' photo is a species of Dudleya, sometimes called dead-man's fingers. You can find similar-looking species on coastal bluffs around Torrey Pines. Cool plant. Where is the Castle In The Sky that you photographed? I agree it is hard to take photos from a helo. I've spent a lot of time in fixed-wing aircraft (on occasion a helo) photographing whales and dolphins and we use specialized belly-mounted photographic systems. Thumbs Up - Jim
<em>edited by ziphius on 2/20/2012</em>
2/21/2012
Topic:
Red Top via Inner Pasture via Agua Caliente

ziphius
ziphius
anutami wrote:
Nice trip! Is red top considered the most remote spot in southern ABDSP? Looks like there is a bunch of pinyon pines on the summit. How was the wind factor sat night and sun on the summit? I was near mortero palms and I thought my truck and camper was going to blow over. I had that 5th wheel picture daren took in the back of my mind.


Thanks! I don't know what the most remote area is... but there isn't much going on in the Sawtooth range. The summit register wasn't overflowing! There was a bit of gusty wind on Sat. night and Sunday morning, but nothing too bad. I should have paid more attention to the flora at the top, I can't recall if these were pinyon pines or desert juniper, but I think they were the latter. smile - Jim
2/21/2012
Topic:
Mortero Palms

ziphius
ziphius
That looks like a great trip that you and your son had! The mysterious ground circle with quartz and pottery shards is very interesting. Perhaps one of the ABDSP rangers might know by looking at the photo what exactly it is? Great find. Thumbs Up - Jim
2/26/2012
Topic:
Trains and Pictographs in Carrizo Creek

ziphius
ziphius
surfponto wrote:
It kind of caught us by surprise also. I think it was more of some type of tour train but I am not totally sure.
The area is very rugged and tends to get visitors from south of the border as was evidenced b the water bottles, clothes and backpacks littered around.


That's the first leg of the new California high-speed rail project... smile but seriously, nice trip report Bob and Daren. I'm amazed at the vividness of the pictographs, makes me wonder what types of dye / coloring agents the natives used back in the day.
2/27/2012
Topic:
Creosote is older than Redwoods and Bristlecones

ziphius
ziphius
That *is* an impressive feat for such an unprepossessing-looking little shrub. 1200 yrs, yikes. This thread got me curious about their root systems, which you might expect to go way DEEP. On the contrary:

The root system of creosotebush consists of a shallow taproot and several lateral secondary roots, each about 10 feet (3 m) in length and 8 to 14 inches (20-35 cm) deep. The taproot extends to a depth of about 32 inches (80 cm); further penetration is usually inhibited by caliche. Root growth is inhibited by high concentrations of salt (>10,000 ppm). Creosotebush roots require relatively large amounts of oxygen for growth. [source: http://mojavedesert.net/plants/shrubs/creosote.html ]

smile Jim
2/27/2012
Topic:
Moan, Puff, Groan and Gasp

ziphius
ziphius
I like it! Your gang is hard-core off-trail zany. smile Great pics. - Jim
2/29/2012
Topic:
ABDSP Via Sunrise HWY

ziphius
ziphius
Great photos. You timed your visit well. Makes hot coffee all the more enjoyable. If I were Uncle Rico, I'd live back there somewhere. smile
2/29/2012
Topic:
Canebrake Canyon Access

ziphius
ziphius
A friend of mine wants to 4WD through Canebrake Canyon into the Inner Pasture. I was under the impression that the road through Canebrake is gated (though I did see ATV tracks of some sort in Inner Pasture a couple of weeks ago). If anyone has information on vehicular access through Canebrake onwards toward Inner Pasture, I'd appreciate the 411. Thanks. - Jim
2/29/2012
Topic:
Canebrake Canyon Access

ziphius
ziphius
dsefcik wrote:
Canebrake is private property, you would have to ask permission to access the area. Hiking or helicopter is your best bet.


Thanks, I was hoping to hear that, because I'm glad there are some sections of ABDSP where hikers can go without encountering vehicles. I'm assuming that hiking the road in from Canebrake also has private property issues, as the road is privately-maintained? I realize there are other start points for hiking into that area but was especially curious about the Canebrake route. Thanks again. - Jim
3/12/2012
Topic:
Calcite Mine Slot Canyons

ziphius
ziphius
Great trip! It sounds like you climbed that crazy ladder, heh? The rectangular 'campsite' thing is a UFO footprint. Not your typical UFO shape, but a UFO nonetheless. Nice mylar balloon, a classic. smile
3/29/2012
Topic:
Oriflamme Canyon

ziphius
ziphius
Something about that cottonwood tree... In November, I camped there, took this photo and had a great hike up the canyon, though I did not make it to the falls. There wasn't water running as far down-canyon as you show during your visit, but it was running further upstream. Nice photos and trip.
[IMG]http://i412.photobucket.com/albums/pp204/Berardius/DSCN6967.jpg[/IMG]
<em>edited by ziphius on 3/30/2012</em>
4/16/2012
Topic:
Exploring The Island and Myer Valley

ziphius
ziphius
That looks like a nice unexplored 'niche'. What is the approx. height on the cabin remains? The photo perspective makes it look quite low. It could be an early 1900s structure, based on the foundation.
4/16/2012
Topic:
Exploring The Island and Myer Valley

ziphius
ziphius
What is a good and safe access point to begin a hike into the area? Assuming no 4-wheel drive and a low-clearance sedan. Did you travel very far off-road to get into the area?
4/24/2012
Topic:
Inner Pasture / Myer Valley

ziphius
ziphius
Great photos Daren! I'm impressed that you hiked the Inner Pasture / Moonlight Canyon to Agua Caliente at night. Especially during a new moon. A few spots with tricky footing along the way. 4 mylar balloons is a lot, what's your personal 'best'? - Jim
4/25/2012
Topic:
Inner Pasture / Myer Valley

ziphius
ziphius
Daren,

Great story about your night hike. I remember that dry fall myself and calling the trail 'faint' is an understatement in that area. I'm planning a return to Moonlight Canyon just to figure out the most efficient way through Moonlight to Inner Pasture, I wasn't satisfied with my route last time. I also encountered the DO NOT ENTER sign you mentioned on the way out to Inner Pasture. I remember getting back to that point on the loop trail upon my return from Red Top / Inner Pasture, do I go right or left? I ran into a large group of kids with parents at the end of that long day that had come from Agua Caliente and they looked at me like I was a wild animal. Wiped blood on my hat from a cactus encounter.... wild, hungry eyes, giant backpack. One thing I have invested in is a trekking umbrella, super-light GoLite brand, you can rig it to clip on your backpack. It's like walking in the shade and not bothersome at all.

Appreciate your detailed account on your water consumption. Your accounts remind me of a book called Dead In Their Tracks, which chronicles illegal crossers from Mexico into AZ/CA during the summer months. The guy who wrote the book I think used to be an ultra-runner and he hiked alongside the crossers to write the book. Many detailed entries on how much water they started out with, how much they consumed, how much they found along the way, daytime temperatures, hours hiked in daylight vs. dark. Check it out:

http://www.uapress.arizona.edu/Books/bid2060.htm

Jim
<em>edited by ziphius on 4/25/2012</em>
5/7/2012
Topic:
Coyote Mountains

ziphius
ziphius
Great photos and trip. I once saw a tarantula hawk in Baja dragging its quarry into a hole. Impressive insects. I wish mylar and latex balloons would be outlawed.
<em>edited by ziphius on 5/7/2012</em>
5/8/2012
Topic:
Coyote Mountains

ziphius
ziphius
Gorgeous sheep glyphs. I'm a lot more aware of all the Mother's Day mylar balloons I'm seeing in the grocery stores this week. Tempted to buy them all and dispose of them.....
5/14/2012
Topic:
Best Mylar Ballon Trip

ziphius
ziphius
My best is 3, but that was from Big Sur. smile ABDSP high is 2, from Inner Pasture. Sighted a 3rd, but couldn't get to it.
5/14/2012
Topic:
EL VALLECITO AND LA RUMOROSA STYLE

ziphius
ziphius
Awesome pictos, thanks for sharing. The contrast between the normal and D-stretched versions is amazing. I'll definitely pay more attention to 'smudges' on rocks in the future. I was near Escalante Utah this spring and saw a few pictos high on cliff walls that I wouldn't have seen otherwise if I hadn't been looking through my binoculars for birds.
5/15/2012
Topic:
Best Mylar Ballon Trip

ziphius
ziphius
Before this thread started, I had been talking with my girlfriend about the balloon problem. We had both read the 'Floating Menace' link that Daren posted and thought of ways to reduce the number of balloons released into the wild. Besides outlawing helium, our main crazy idea was a form of eco-terrorism, involving popping the balloons in-store before they are sold. It would take a subtle method, such as a straight pin or a micro- blow-dart straw. Eventually, you would get caught. So, we're working on other ideas, such as education campaigns. My girlfriend thought of a "balloon deposit", where you return the balloon to the store to get your money back. But the deposit would have to be big enough (say $5) to motivate people to return them. If folks would just stop losing them to the sky...... any technology out there that could be inside the balloon so that when it reached a certain height, say 50 ft., it would "pop" on its own? That would at least keep a majority of the balloons in urban areas.

On an unrelated note, we were picking up trash at Coronado Beach last weekend and I came up with the idea of training corvids (crows, jays, ravens) to fly around and pick up trash and return items to a reward station for food pellets. They are very smart birds with great eyesight.
5/15/2012
Topic:
Villager Peak

ziphius
ziphius
That's a BIG ONE rockhopper! Welcome to the forum. Great place to learn about ABDSP and share. Villager is on my "to do" list. You say that you carried only 4 liters of water with you and left some at the summit? How much did you drink?

That 'western scarp yikes' photo... is that the actual trail where your backpack is sitting? Or did you wander over to 'the edge'?

Jim
5/16/2012
Topic:
Best Mylar Ballon Trip

ziphius
ziphius
I like the digestible- or biodegradable-material idea. The Mylar and Latex industry would not, heh? My buddy Nick further evolved one idea. Instead of training crows to pick up trash, train crows to attack and return popped helium balloons for food rewards. It doesn't matter if the balloon is free-floating or tethered... There are a lot of crows around that could be put to work. Imagine the havoc crows would create at kids' birthday parties in the park....

dsefcik wrote:
OK, at first I was dying from laughter reading your ideas, then I realized you had some great ideas...self destruct balloons?? Perfect...humm..except what if they were released near wildlife to begin with? Good start though. How about making the balloons out of eco friendly or digestible materials to begin with? Ziphius, I think you are on to something....


ziphius wrote:
Before this thread started, I had been talking with my girlfriend about the balloon problem. We had both read the 'Floating Menace' link that Daren posted and thought of ways to reduce the number of balloons released into the wild. Besides outlawing helium, our main crazy idea was a form of eco-terrorism, involving popping the balloons in-store before they are sold. It would take a subtle method, such as a straight pin or a micro- blow-dart straw. Eventually, you would get caught. So, we're working on other ideas, such as education campaigns. My girlfriend thought of a "balloon deposit", where you return the balloon to the store to get your money back. But the deposit would have to be big enough (say $5) to motivate people to return them. If folks would just stop losing them to the sky...... any technology out there that could be inside the balloon so that when it reached a certain height, say 50 ft., it would "pop" on its own? That would at least keep a majority of the balloons in urban areas.

On an unrelated note, we were picking up trash at Coronado Beach last weekend and I came up with the idea of training corvids (crows, jays, ravens) to fly around and pick up trash and return items to a reward station for food pellets. They are very smart birds with great eyesight.

<em>edited by ziphius on 5/16/2012</em>
5/16/2012
Topic:
Hike through Banner mine district

ziphius
ziphius
Nice trip report and photos herofix. I'm surprised you found a seemingly abandoned mine that you could walk right into. I'd think that liability issues would result in all mine entrances having some sort of gates or bars. Your pink flowers are called Penstemon and the big yellow ones are a species of bush-poppy, sometimes called by their Latin name, Dendromecon.
5/16/2012
Topic:
Villager Peak

ziphius
ziphius
I work and hike with a guy who did Villager / Rabbit last year as an overnight. Super-fit dude who did just fine, he brought 6 liters of water for the trip, when the high temps were about 80. Six people started the hike, two guys and a gal made it to Rabbit, while the other three stayed behind on Villager. One guy started having hallucinations and the wobbles on the return trip, was just a bit too much for his fitness level and / or water intake. He was useless for a few days afterwards. I keep talking about doing it, but I want to be super-fit at the time and have the perfect conditions to attack it.

DHeuschele wrote:
I did Villager and Rabbit a few years ago (probably 7 or 8 years ago) in late May. It was hotter than we planned (there were 3 of us but I was the only one that made it to Rabbit). It was not good as I was conserving water for much of the route between Villager and Rabbit which put my electrolites off which caused me to have to rest often on every uphill on the way back from Rabbit to Villager (the route between Villager and Rabbit has significant uphill in both directions) so I ended up doing an unplanned bivy. When I got back to the desert floor the next day the car thermometer which was in the sun (so hotter than official temps) stated 107 degrees.

Shortly afterwards I had a physical unrelated to the hike. The blood test showed some irregularities due to the experience. Fortunately there was not any permanent issues resulting from the hike, but it took weeks for the effects to not show in my blood work.

I have not gone back to attempt Rabbit under more favorable conditions. I may never because while Villager has nice views the summit of Rabbit is broad and does not present a very good view. So it is a lot of work for a not very impressive view. Still I may try it again maybe using a different route (maybe come in from Rock House Canyon which I have used for 8652 (Dawns/Lorrenzos)).

So while I have done peaks that are likely harder than Rabbit (Picacho del Diablo, Williamson, maybe 6582, etc.), doing Rabbit when I did it (late May) pushed me harder than any other peak. It can definitely present some issues and is harder than a 6666' peak would seem.
5/23/2012
Topic:
Misc Photos from last week

ziphius
ziphius
Nice photos Daren. The centipede is better than anything out of the movie 'Alien'. Hoping the stuff they prey on is killed quickly so the absolute terror is diminished. Shock
5/23/2012
Topic:
Big cool-down predicted for the weekend

ziphius
ziphius
Predicted high temp for Borrego Springs on Saturday is only 76 degrees. Ten degrees higher on Sunday. Nice late-May opportunity to go goof off. I might hit the Inner Pasture area for some exploring!

Today: Sunny, with a high near 98. Northwest wind between 10 and 15 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.

Tonight: Mostly clear, with a low around 70. West wind between 15 and 20 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.

Thursday: Sunny, with a high near 94. North wind around 5 mph becoming southwest.

Thursday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 65. West wind between 10 and 20 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.

Friday: Sunny, with a high near 78. West wind between 10 and 20 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.

Friday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 57.

Saturday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 76.
5/27/2012
Topic:
Inner Pasture on a cool 5/26. 5 balloon trip!

ziphius
ziphius
Saturday was clear, cool, and windy in the Inner Pasture. Daren’s advice from a previous post to park near mile 41 and hike up the sandy canyon was great. Much easier (though longer) route than Moonlight Canyon. Nice way to enter the pasture. No time spent in the northern end of the pasture, which I explored back in Feb. I headed south to the area ESE of Red Top this time. Finding unmapped springs and unheralded signs of past human habitation were my goals for the trip. Within a couple of miles of starting, I’d seen a dragonfly, always a good sign that there is water SOMEWHERE. Within the next mile, I saw my first LOGGERHEAD SHRIKE of the season, an adult bird, perched on some thorn scrub. I checked the bush to see if the bird had impaled any prey, but no sign. The different thing about this canyon is the amount of TRASH, compared with Moonlight Canyon. One of the first artifacts I found was this Mexican phone card:

Every quarter mile or so, I’d find whole plastic 2-liter bottles or gallon jugs. Sun-composted, chipped up versions of these were even more common. Textiles, whole or pieces, were scattered along the sides of the wash: a pair of black Levi’s, a knitted blanket, an inverted sweatshirt with unknown lettering stitched caught my attention:

Checking for scorpions and other crawlies, I carefully flipped it right-side out to reveal:


I was thankful it wasn’t a NY Giants design.

Working my way south towards the east face of Red Top, it was apparent that the jackrabbits were out in force. I encountered over 40 during my 13-mile walk.

I kept up my walk south, free of my pack, which I cached an hour earlier.

The first morteros I found were at an exposed site and these were fairly shallow scoops:

Also found a little pottery nearby:

Then I found a sheltered, promising site, with a few morteros, one quite deep:



But this site had a lot trash as well, no doubt because it is shaded most of the time. But I did find a nice habitation site, just a bit tarnished. I found evidence of OLD human habitation, but was annoyed by the RECENT habitation clues. Ironic.

It got me thinking, how far and deep into the backcountry do I need to get to leave the trash behind? The balloons are always going to follow us, no matter how remote we get, but how far do I need to go to avoid the trash that is carried by human hands?

Late in the afternoon, I came across a very tame WESTERN TANAGER, that allowed me to approach with my dinky camera. I was on my stomach at this point, trying not to scare the bird.


Some cholla skeletons:

I’m counting this as a 5-balloon trip (2 mylar and 3 latex), even though the latex balloons were one bundle. The nylon streamers from the latex balloons even had a thumb-tack with them, implying that they had been anchored, albeit, poorly so. You can imagine the thumb tack, holding precariously, against the force of 3 helium-filled balloons, losing a half a millimeter of anchor every half hour, until it finally pulled loose, and the whole package floated up and away, perhaps riding along with a red-tailed hawk for part of its journey.


I carried my full pack and 4 gallons of water [oops, no it was only 3 I remember], giving me the option of staying Sunday if the mood struck me, but decided against a camp, based on the amount of illegal traffic evidence and trash that I found. No doubt I would have been perfectly safe there at night, it’s just that I was looking for a true, lonely backcountry experience. Cached a gallon of water in the area, just to see if it will survive the summer. Will return this autumn to see (and hopefully drink) the result. I didn’t find any uncharted springs, but those are longshots, especially this time of year. Hey Daren, you mentioned hiking to a spring in Inner Pasture on your last trip, is it the one shown on the topo at 32.904 and 116.342? If so, was there water? I encountered water in Feb. in the canyon farther up toward Red Top. That’s all folks, appreciate the opportunity to share this with the forum. – Jim
edited by ziphius on 5/27/2012
edited by ziphius on 5/27/2012
edited by ziphius on 5/29/2012
edited by surfponto on 11/26/2012
5/29/2012
Topic:
Inner Pasture on a cool 5/26. 5 balloon trip!

ziphius
ziphius
anutami wrote:
THANK YOU for the report! I already misss it so much out there! I always wondered why they leave so many clothes behind? Is that when you reach the point of so much exhaustion you start to rip your clothes off?

Did you see if the calling card has minutes left on it? Love the Raider sweatshirt, that is a classic! Next time remember to pack some lighter fluid and I'm sure you could get away with a control burn smile


Folks shed clothing, even ALL of their clothing upon overheating. This is well-described in the book 'Dead In Their Tracks', which chronicles illegal crossers:
http://www.uapress.arizona.edu/Books/bid2060.htm
Yeah, I wonder if the calling card had any minutes left on it. smile Daren, your reference to finding bees and water reminded me of "The Secret Knowledge of Water" by Craig Childs, who is no stranger to desert walking. The subtitle is "There are 2 easy ways to die in the desert: thirst and drowning". I've read 4 of his books this year, really gripping stuff: http://www.amazon.com/The-Secret-Knowledge-Water-Discovering/dp/0316610690
http://www.houseofrain.com/

From what Daren mentioned about this being a well-used route, with perhaps caches of water and food along the way, perhaps it is less harsh than other desert crossings, some of which are described in that book. Anybody here ever come across a body out in ABDSP?

Daren, I'd be up for a two-car one-way trip. Not sure if I want to do triple-digit temps, but if I did, I'd certainly bring my sun umbrella with me. I use it on my walks up and down El Cajon Mountain during the warmer months. It's lightweight portable shade and cooler than wearing a sun hat.
http://www.golite.com/Chrome-Dome-Trekking-Umbrella-P928.aspx

I wish it were still winter! - Jim
5/30/2012
Topic:
Memorial Day Weekend: Sombrero Peak

ziphius
ziphius
Nice report and virtual tour of the museum. I learn so much on this forum. I've been up Sombrero Peak several times (from the west) and never knew about the solstice cave. Were the ollas a recent find by someone? I remember reading Marshal South's chronicles of life on Ghost Mountain and his mention of finding ollas back in the 1940s. I reckon that pot hunters have probably removed most of the things out there. If I'm ever lucky enough to find something like that, I will photograph it in place and leave it for the next person to find.
5/30/2012
Topic:
Memorial Day Weekend: Palo Verde/Blythe Intaglios

ziphius
ziphius
Those intaglios and panels are amazing. Anyone know the estimated ages on them?
5/31/2012
Topic:
Inner Pasture on a cool 5/26. 5 balloon trip!

ziphius
ziphius
Count me in for any trash-picking-up missions to Inner Pasture. I don't have a 4WD, but I like to work hard.

Now I'm gonna obsess about finding pictos in Inner Pasture. No hints please, the SEARCH is where the fun comes from. - Jim
6/18/2012
Topic:
Desert View Tower and Table Mt

ziphius
ziphius
Thanks for posting SOMETHING Tom! smile Great photos and story. Thanks for the mini-history on Table Mtn too. The misspelling of 'civil' on the no trespassing sign could have been done on purpose... there is a passage in 'Rancho Costa Nada', by Phil Garlington, where he describes purposefully misspelling a word on his version of a No Trespassing sign, to foster an image "of an unlettered and possibly demented" individual guarding the place. wink Rancho Costa Nada has become something of a cult classic I guess, I see that copies on Amazon and EBay are selling for over $100, but there is a cheaper Kindle edition. If you want to read about some truly odd desert characters out near Blythe and how they get by, read this. One review says "Finally, the wacko homesteading book for me!"

I stopped by Desert Tower back in late May and the guy who runs the place is a great, an old-school hippie with at least 3 dogs. He was reading the latest issue of The New Yorker when I got there and we discussed alternative fuel vehicles, among other things. He used to live in Normal Heights, things perhaps did not go so well living with a woman there, and now he apparently lives 'upstairs' at the tower. Loves his commute. Desert Tower has quite the selection of natural history and local history books. I picked up a copy of Chris Wray's The Historic Backcountry and a Historic Highway 80 t-shirt there.

links: http://www.ranchocostanada.itgo.com/
6/20/2012
Topic:
Lower Willows Trail

ziphius
ziphius
Hey, nice trip. Sorry you didn't see any sheep. Your golf ball might start a new forum theme along the lines of mylar balloons... what was your best golf ball day in ABDSP? smile You actually photographed a damselfly (technically different from a dragonfly). Damselflies are generally smaller and more slender than dragonflies. Damselflies hold their wings together when perched (as shown in your photo - opposed to dragonflies, which spread their wings.

What were the temperatures like when you visited? How much water did you carry? - Jim
<em>edited by ziphius on 6/20/2012</em>
6/21/2012
Topic:
Myer Valley / Rockhouse Cyn

ziphius
ziphius
Oh man, you got the rare Elmo variety of mylar balloon, congrats! Nice trip. I looked for the bighorn for about 30 seconds in the first photo and couldn't find it. Having never seen one, I suppose if they don't move, you're probably not gonna see 'em heh? Anyone know about what percentage of the sheep are radio-collared? Now I know where to go for used backpacks, seriously though, I might bring a couple back one day for the used backpacks for kids program that Adventure 16 runs. Nice TR Daren. - Jim
6/26/2012
Topic:
Squaw Tit and Table Mountain

ziphius
ziphius
Great TR and photos, I felt like I was on the trip with you. smile Hey, without a sense of scale, it is difficult to tell how large the coyote is. When I first saw the photo, my brain immediately said "kit fox". But that isn't based on anything solid. You took such a good photo of the teeth, that it inspired me to research any potential differences between coyote and kit fox 'dentition'. I haven't found anything yet...

Daren's teaser photo of the pictographs shows a double-helix design that I also saw in Utah along the Escalante River, except the double-helix was about 25 ft. in length. I wish I knew more about the native designs and how they are interpreted. Again, great post. - Jim
6/26/2012
Topic:
Squaw Tit and Table Mountain

ziphius
ziphius
surfponto wrote:


Coyote shot is creepy. Looks like a gremlin or a chubacabra smile


thanks for posting that and keeping the forum alive during the hot summer months.

smile


Anyone ever seen a chupacabra in ABDSP? Makes sense that their northern range would poke into our southern deserts... wink
6/29/2012
Topic:
Squaw Tit and Table Mountain

ziphius
ziphius
tommy750 wrote:
I'm interested in your Escalante comment since I'm heading to southern Utah for a week or two late next month. Was going to do the Grand Tour through Zion, Bryce, Canyonland and Arches. Are there some rock art sites I shouldn't miss? Was going to try and see the Horseshoe Canyon site for sure. Thanks for any advice. Tom


Tom, I don't know much about that area, other than there is an impressive cliff dwelling with pictographs along the Escalante River, just east of Escalante Natural Bridge. If I hadn't been looking for birds at the time, I would have probably walked right by the ruins, which are up quite high. Once you see one set of ruins, it kind of turns on your brain to the types of ledges that you should be looking for. Suddenly, you are finding stuff everywhere... Stop by Escalante Outfitters in town when you pass through Escalante (eat their pizza too). They have a very good selection of books in there, in addition to local knowledge of where to look for pictographs, ruins, etc. The folks who work there are hikers themselves when they are not running the store...so they are a wealth of knowledge. If you want a great 2-3 day backpack, do the Boulder Mail Trail into Death Hollow. The best desert walking I've done yet. - Jim
7/2/2012
Topic:
Dragonfly and damselfly project

ziphius
ziphius
Hey gang, I've been paying more attention to the presence of dragonflies and damselflies lately. I'm especially interested in correlating the presence of these insects to water sources. Dragonflys are not as reliable water-indicators as damselflies, merely because they can fly much farther and do migrate. If you see a damselfly however, you are probably pretty darn close to water. It occurred to me that collectively, using the power of the forum, a great database of dragonfly/damselfly occurrence in ABDSP could be constructed. I am volunteering to build a database and create GIS maps to share with the forum or any other interested researchers. Dragonflies and damselflies are rare enough where simply recording a GPS location (or approximate location, but the more precision, the better) would not be too onerous, I think. Heck, we could even add bees to the database if desired! All it would take is this: you see a dragonfly or damselfly in the park and record the location, plus any other bonus info you feel is important (whether it was specifically a dragonfly vs damselfly, color, flight direction, date, time of day, weather). Post your information to this topic and I'll slowly harvest the data and create some maps that all can enjoy. We'll probably learn things we never considered before. Photo below shows a damselfly on top, dragonfly below. - Jim
[IMG]http://i412.photobucket.com/albums/pp204/Berardius/Public%20Stuff/DragonfliesandDamselflies4.jpg[/IMG]
<em>edited by ziphius on 7/2/2012</em>
7/2/2012
Topic:
Dragonfly and damselfly project

ziphius
ziphius
Dragonflies will be much stockier and always hold their wings open when perched. Dragonflies have an abdomen (think tail) perhaps 4-5x the length of their thorax (think torso).
[IMG]http://i412.photobucket.com/albums/pp204/Berardius/Public%20Stuff/dragonflypinned.jpg[/IMG]
[IMG]http://i412.photobucket.com/albums/pp204/Berardius/Public%20Stuff/dragonflyanatomy.jpg[/IMG]
Damselflies are much more slender or dainty (think damsel-in-distress as a memory aid), with a much longer abdomens relative to their thorax. Damselflies will hold their wings closed when perched:
[IMG]http://i412.photobucket.com/albums/pp204/Berardius/Public%20Stuff/red-damselfly.jpg[/IMG]
Here is a prepared and 'pinned' damselfly, showing how long the abdomen is compared to the thorax. It would look like this in flight, but have its wings folded when perched:
[IMG]http://i412.photobucket.com/albums/pp204/Berardius/Public%20Stuff/damselflypinned.jpg[/IMG]
My buddy Dan has a good description of both in flight: Dragonflies: ZOOM. They are like F-14s. On the other hand, DAMSELFLIES.... you can almost see the individual wingbeats, they get beat around by turbulence more, less direct flight. They are like helicopters. David Attenborough video of damselflies:


Folks will probably see both kinds at obvious sources of water. I'm mainly interested in using these guys to help locate cryptic water sources, perhaps pools that have not been documented before, or long-forgotten springs. The opportunity to aggregate numerous folks' observations into an interesting story or pattern over time is exciting I think. A good general source of information these guys can be found at: http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/arthropoda/uniramia/odonatoida.html - Jim
edited by ziphius on 7/2/2012
edited by ziphius on 7/2/2012
<em>edited by ziphius on 7/2/2012</em>
7/2/2012
Topic:
Dragonfly and damselfly project

ziphius
ziphius
Nice one Daren! (and correct on the ID). Congrats on contributing the first data point. You recall the month? smile
7/3/2012
Topic:
Dragonfly and damselfly project

ziphius
ziphius
tommy750 wrote:
When can I start getting college level credits for reading these posts?? You guys are amazing! Haven't really paid attention to either insect, till now! You mentioned bees. Have stumbled onto two hives in the last month if that's of interest. Tom


Tom, the more the merrier. Maybe an honorary doctorate degree is in your future. I just ordered a copy of 'Dragonflies and Damselflies of The West', and am excited to get species IDs on whatever we can. smile Active bee hives are probably even better indicators of cryptic water sources than far-ranging dragonflies. Where did you see your hives and when? - Jim
<em>edited by ziphius on 7/3/2012</em>
7/3/2012
Topic:
Myer Valley / Rockhouse Cyn

ziphius
ziphius
That IS a big truck. Did you airbrush out all the scratches?! smile
<em>edited by ziphius on 7/3/2012</em>
7/6/2012
Topic:
Catavina Pictographs in Central Baja

ziphius
ziphius
I was going to say the same thing... those pictos are very well-preserved! Wish I knew what some of the symbols meant to those folks. Nice trip. smile
7/9/2012
Topic:
Dragonfly and damselfly project

ziphius
ziphius
Well Daren, it looks like you photographed a 'Variegated Meadowhawk' (Sympetrum corruptum), either a female or immature. The kicker is, this species is highly migratory, often found in the desert southwest FAR from ANY water source. smile They are distributed far and wide over the western U.S. Hey, did the sheep count happen already? - Jim

dsefcik wrote:
That seems easy enough, let me try my first one....

This is a Dragonfly because he is perched and his wings are expanded (Canebrake)


I will start keeping my eyes open now that I know the difference!
7/9/2012
Topic:
Catavina Pictographs in Central Baja

ziphius
ziphius
I wonder about the different colors of sun symbols. Why have an all-black sun? It must mean something considerably different from a blue sun with a yellow ring around it. I imagine the folks who study these have a grand 'ol time!
7/10/2012
Topic:
2012 Annual Bighorn Sheep Count

ziphius
ziphius
Are there some palm grove areas that are off-limits to hikers during the summer, to avoid disturbing the sheep? Apparently, your spot wasn't one of them? I want to hear more about the kid being thrown into the water. I came across a couple of "heat-strokers" on El Cajon Mountain on Sunday.
7/10/2012
Topic:
2012 Annual Bighorn Sheep Count

ziphius
ziphius
Those are great photos of the sheep and the gamer son. I'm inspired to go out and see sheep this summer. I'd like to be respectful of the animals' habitat though, so I'd take any advice given. First thing I noticed about the son was the DARK-colored hat without a sufficient brim. Second thing I noticed is the apparent lack of any water being carried. The one time in my life I got into heat trouble is when I was wearing a black wide-brimmed hat. That hat is gone now.
7/12/2012
Topic:
2012 Bighorn Sheep Count

ziphius
ziphius
Very cool trip Daren. Does the team observe from sunrise to sunset, in shifts, to alleviate fatigue? Or is it basically all of you under the tarp searching all day? Some of my work involves counting migrating gray whales over 12-hr periods in 3-hr shifts, so I'm always curious how other wildlife teams accomplish their goals. You mention that sheep numbers were down compared with some previous years. I imagine that the sites are fairly standardized year-to-year, meaning that the same locations are counted every year. I imagine that sites like Rattlesnake Spring will be utilized every year by the sheep, but there are probably other, 'minor' springs that might get used only during certain years where rainfall allows for it. I could envision a scenario where the number of sheep at the standard count sites is "low" compared with previous years, but this could be due to greater dispersal of the sheep population to less-preferred sites. But I bet that the organizers of the count have this stuff pretty much figured out. Thanks for sharing your trip. - Jim
7/18/2012
Topic:
Dream Find!!!

ziphius
ziphius
Congratulations on the find and kudos to you for maintaining the olla's link to history by leaving it there. Someone else may be able to experience the same shiver-down-your-spine sensation in the future if they are lucky enough to stumble across it. Much better than having it tagged and catalogued in some drawer miles away from its 'historic context'. Anyone interested in reading and thinking hard about the ethics of leaving things in their place might enjoy "Finders Keepers: A Tale of Archaeological Plunder and Obsession", by Craig Childs. - Jim

http://www.houseofrain.com/bookdetail.cfm?id=1281649336899
7/18/2012
Topic:
The Search For Geocache "Yoni"

ziphius
ziphius
Nice trip and photos. Yeah.... your skull fragment looks a little eerie.
7/20/2012
Topic:
Border Angels

ziphius
ziphius
Nice report Daren. Who is responsible for the big blue water barrels along S-2 ? After I read that the high temp was 116 on the day you went to the border, I couldn't help but noticing how many people were NOT wearing sun hats. But, they are young, immortal. smile - Jim
<em>edited by ziphius on 7/20/2012</em>
7/20/2012
Topic:
Dragonfly and damselfly project

ziphius
ziphius
Thanks TR. I remembered this photo from your previous post and was trying to find that one in my field guide the other day. Another data point! smile - Jim

TR wrote:
Demselfly


June 2, 2012
Google Earth Coordinates (UTM):
11 S
551957 m E
3693075 m N
edited by TR on 7/20/2012

<em>edited by ziphius on 7/20/2012</em>
7/20/2012
Topic:
Older Anza Borrego maps

ziphius
ziphius
Love this stuff. I've got some 1930s maps of S.D. county that I should scan and add to here. smile - Jim
8/6/2012
Topic:
Horseshoe Canyon Rock Art Site

ziphius
ziphius
That's amazing stuff. Especially the hidden sheep that dstretch brings out. I bet the area isn't too crowded, given the distance from the nearest paved road.
8/7/2012
Topic:
Split Mountain/Sandstone Canyon after the Rains!

ziphius
ziphius
Epic ! That truck is so scrunched up that you couldn't get your hands into the glove box to rifle around for loose change ! I like visiting Fossil Canyon whenever that area gets floods.... new stuff gets exposed. smile
8/10/2012
Topic:
Tule Wind Project and ENERGIA JUAREZ SUBSTATION

ziphius
ziphius
There are no alternatives to pristine wilderness. Ironic in a deliberation about alternative energy.
8/21/2012
Topic:
Storm Canyon / Vallecito

ziphius
ziphius
Nice trip Daren. The scat is great. My girlfriend recently found one on a hike we did near Comb's Peak. We had been finding the usual berry-filled coyote scats, with an occasional gopher skull embedded in them. Then, she found a much BIGGER scat nearby. This large scat had deer hooves in it. Later that day, as the light got lower and made finding tracks easier, we encountered several mountain lion prints on the trail.

Any details on the mileage of your trip? Water / salt consumption? Looks like you did some uphill walking, judging from the panorama. - Jim
8/23/2012
Topic:
Best Scat Finds

ziphius
ziphius
Hee hee. A scat aficionado. I've definitely got to hike with you someday. smile You've built a good visual catalog there. I don't have a photo of my most interesting scat, but as I mentioned in another thread, my girlfriend found a probable mountain lion scat with deer hooves in it near Combs Peak. I've got the deer hooves in my office somewhere. This scat was much larger than surrounding berry-filled coyote scats. I've also found some scats of unknown origin with balloon streamer material in it, not good. - Jim
8/23/2012
Topic:
Bachelor Party in Early May Help...

ziphius
ziphius
I vote for Inner Pasture on Day 1, via Agua Caliente and Moonlight Canyon. Set up camp and have a nice meal on the floor of the Pasture, preferably the northern end where it seems to be free of migrant activity. Day 2, start early and bushwhack and boulder-scramble your way up to the summit of Red Top. If THAT hasn't tired him out, Sawtooth Peak is adjacent to Red Top and you can bag that one too. Then on your way home, stop at Chipotle's Mexican Grill for a giant burrito which you will both be craving.
8/27/2012
Topic:
Yuha Well and Geoglyphs

ziphius
ziphius
Thanks for the tour! I remember reading "The Anza Trail and The Settling of California" years ago. Real explorers back then, without any emergency buttons to push! smile
9/4/2012
Topic:
Lost Valley

ziphius
ziphius
Shhhhhhh......... smile I don't want this area to become 'popular'. I'm always bummed when I see an article about a little-known or pristine area. My girlfriend and I have spent quite a bit of time here, there are springs, HUGE cottonwoods, mountain lion and bobcat tracks everywhere.....
9/7/2012
Topic:
Gettin the itch...

ziphius
ziphius
Oh... I'll probably go out to an undisclosed location... sneak peek here:



Seriously though, I owe my girlfriend a trip to Inner Pasture and Red Top (did that trip when she was out of town, boy was she jealous). Villager Peak is on my to-do list as well as the Coyote Canyon area. I also want to explore the area between Comb's Peak and Alder Canyon / Fig Tree Valley a bit more. That will probably be a nuts-and-fruit-and-water-and-bivy-only kind of backpack trip. - Jim
edited by ziphius on 12/7/2012
9/17/2012
Topic:
Short McCain Valley Trip

ziphius
ziphius
Nice trip! I don't think I've ever seen that species of snake. Yeah, that coyote really disappears once it gets off the road. Good sleuthing on the springs / pottery. smile

Jim
9/18/2012
Topic:
Short McCain Valley Trip

ziphius
ziphius
Daren, your second photo implies a climbing of the barbed / razor wire?!! Or good technique with the long lens...
9/21/2012
Topic:
Book Review - Old Time Cattlemen of ABDSP Area

ziphius
ziphius
When I read this about 6 yrs ago, I thought the same thing: those guys were TOUGH! No Gore-Tex, no lightweight camp stoves, just grit and dust and determination. It really is a fun read! smile
9/21/2012
Topic:
Wilderness Advanced First Aid (WAFA) course

ziphius
ziphius
Hey gang. I wanted to pass along my experiences with a 4-day course / certification I completed this week, for 3 reasons:

1) What I learned is pertinent to the Anza-Borrego backcountry and any other activities where you are >2 hrs from 'definitive medical care'.
2) I would not want to spend time in the backcountry with people who lack this kind of training. (I had no concern about this prior to this course)
3) I've never taken a better course IN ANY SUBJECT in my whole life.

The course is offered by Wilderness Medical Associates (link at end of msg) and I've never learned so much from any course in such a short period of time. They also offer a 2-day Wilderness First Aid course. What you come away with from this course could save your own life and the lives of people you run into anywhere you travel. There is a ton of hands-on "patient assessment drills", where you, as the rescuer, come upon the patient, not knowing what is wrong. You are taught basic medical bedside manner and communication so that you can effectively treat patients who might be combative, confused, or unable to communicate with you. We also learned how to diagnose problems for every critical body system (circulatory, respiratory, nervous). The instructors are amazing and they are practicing rock-climbing guides, ski rescuers, river guides, etc. So, they've got real-world "street-cred" dealing with medical problems in the backcountry. The instructors are also gifted in their ability to debunk many medical myths that could otherwise harm patients if implemented. Here's one example (from about 20) of a patient assessment drill that we ran:

Our group of rescuers consisted of 14-15 camp counselors. We had 7-8 kids. The ratio was unrealistically in our favor. Kids were throwing rocks at a hornet's nest in a tree and all of them were stung. Most of the counselors were stung too, because we were stupid enough to rush into the scene to pull the kids away. The kids were already running away from the scene and we should have encouraged them to keep running. Kids are great at running, heh? Each kid had to be quickly evaluated for whether or not their stings and resulting hives were indicative of a mild / severe allergic reaction, or worse, anaphylactic shock. Pulse and breathing were evaluated and monitored. Counselors had to report to the lead medical counselor to request drugs. At our disposal were Benadryl, Prednisone, and epinephrine (Epi-pen form). Only the kids in true anaphylactic shock require epinephrine, all others could be treated with Benadryl and perhaps prednisone. Little kids might hyperventilate because they are experiencing an acute stress response to the stings, but the fact is, THEY ARE STILL ABLE TO BREATHE! Short story is that some counselors panicked, and TREATED FIRST and EVALUATED SECOND, meaning that at least one kid that didn't need epinephrine was given it (not harmful). But that meant that my camper died. The lead counselor only had 2 epi-Pens in the medical bag (which is normal for a group of this size or even bigger groups - we later dubbed our camp name "Camp Cheapskate"). My camper did not initially show signs of breathing difficultly. It looked like a normal allergic reaction. Once he showed signs of breathing difficultly, my colleague ran for the epi-pen. We did everything right. We ended up performing CPR on him, which was useless at that point, because his airways were too constricted by swelling, even after we had administered Benadryl early on. The counselors acted independently with each kid, when we should have communicated between counselors to COLLECTIVELY EVALUATE the kids (essentially field triage). We also put ourselves in danger, because we didn't know if any of the counselors were prone to anaphylaxis. Camps always ask parents to fill out medical forms for the kids, but do the counselors themselves know who among them is severely allergic? During the episode, not a single counselor asked the lead counselor the simple question "Do we have a history of anaphylaxis on any of these kids' medical forms?" A little organization could have gone a long way. Most classes fail this drill. I can't say enough about this course. - Jim

http://www.wildmed.com
<em>edited by ziphius on 9/21/2012</em>
9/22/2012
Topic:
Wilderness Advanced First Aid (WAFA) course

ziphius
ziphius
anutami wrote:
Ziphius,

Looking at the cost of the course in idywild or Japan..seems expensive! Especially considering I wanted my family (x4) to do this. Will you take us through the course this winter?

Thanks,
Nolan


Yep, these courses aren't cheap. But they are worth it. What I didn't realize is that much of the material from the course was sitting on my bookshelf at home. Rick Curtis wrote a book called "The Backpacker's Field Manual" which has a first aid section that borrows heavily from Wilderness Medical Associates curriculum. Funny how I read only the sections on dehydration and hyponatremia (and the camp recipes) since I have owned the book. Our instructor concluded our course by making fun of the tendency of campers and hikers to put more thought into what they are going to eat on their trip than issues like what is actually in their first aid kit. Or if they are even carrying a first aid kit. - Jim
9/24/2012
Topic:
Wilderness Advanced First Aid (WAFA) course

ziphius
ziphius
anutami wrote:
You forgot the Item most important than even duct tape or Jack Daniels TWEEZERS!


We did an exercise that simulated cleaning wounds and lacerations (the instructors gave us pigs feet with puncture and laceration wounds). We rolled the pigs feet around in the dirt, jammed sticks into puncture wounds, etc. Tweezers were 'muy importante' in this task. Tweezers help you hold open certain wounds so that you can effectively flush out debris from the wound (drinking quality water is best, as full-strength 10% povodone iodine will kill tissue. 1% povodone iodine is better than nothing, but you should dilute 10% iodine for flushing wounds). Of course, a high-powered syringe filled with water was the second most important piece of equipment in this task. It really allows you to get embedded junk out of the wound. I don't have a syringe in my first aid kit, but will be including one. Underestimating infection risk in the backcountry is a no-no.

Good tips for what to have in your kit: http://www.wildmed.com/blog/building-a-wilderness-first-aid-kit/
<em>edited by ziphius on 9/24/2012</em>
9/24/2012
Topic:
State of Kansas likes wind towers :(

ziphius
ziphius
They also like 'fracking'. Ugh.

http://www.kansas.com/2012/03/03/2240420/as-oil-gas-fracking-gains-popularity.html
9/27/2012
Topic:
Borrego Badlands

ziphius
ziphius
Welcome John! I enjoyed your trip report, quite the adventure. Seeing the Subaru pulled out of the mud was fun. This is a great forum, I've learned a lot from folks here.
Jim
<em>edited by ziphius on 9/27/2012</em>
10/15/2012
Topic:
Border patrol finds artifacts

ziphius
ziphius
Not sure what it means when they say The Forest Service "took charge" of the artifacts. But I'm assuming they were removed from their resting site. It's one reason I never report the locations of anything I find to ANY 'authorities'. The chain of history is forever broken when artifacts are removed from the wild, notwithstanding the usual arguments of "well, they have to be protected from those who might REMOVE them illegally." Same result. We have enough stuff in dusty drawers in locked rooms. upset
<em>edited by ziphius on 10/15/2012</em>
10/15/2012
Topic:
Chariot, Oriflamme, Rodriguez MTB Loop

ziphius
ziphius
Man, that's quite the mountain bike trip! Nice find and collar return. Did you encounter any motorized dirt bikes in the area? The last time I hiked/camped up Oriflamme / Rodriguez, there were a bunch of guys riding through, kicking up all kinds of dust. Also a bit of gunfire towards the Chariot mines area.
10/15/2012
Topic:
Culp Valley Fire

ziphius
ziphius
Wow, that is a lot of area burned. Maybe the troughs are / were for cattle watering back in the day? Though they look suspiciously ornate... It's good to have a pair of binoculars when walking near a burn area, because that's a good time to see / find animal bones that otherwise have been covered with vegetation for a long time.
10/17/2012
Topic:
Border patrol finds artifacts

ziphius
ziphius
Tom,

I wonder if a careful Google Earth search would yield any results on the geoglyphs. I guess the place to start is with *known* geoglyphs, to see if the Google imagery is actually good enough to reveal them in the first place.

Jim
10/22/2012
Topic:
Squaw Tit, Table Mountain and 10 other Benchmarks

ziphius
ziphius
Nice TR and photos! It looks like 1941 was a popular year to install benchmarks. Is there any rhyme or reason to which ones are missing the elevation stamps?
10/22/2012
Topic:
End of Dos Cabezas Road

ziphius
ziphius
Looks like a very fun trip for the kids (and grownups!). I have fond memories of encountering a tarantula along those tracks at sundown. See any bats out there? It might be a little late in the year for them, but I recall one summer seeing them emerge from one of the tunnels. Must be roosting sites in them.
10/22/2012
Topic:
Hike & Hops with the Anza Borrego Foundation

ziphius
ziphius
That's what you call a BIG horn. Har har. I looked online at some of the stuff the ABF does. One project involves getting low-income city kids a camping experience in the desert. I think they are calling it "Big Scary Outdoors".
10/29/2012
Topic:
Rockhouse Canyon 4 Day Backpack TR

ziphius
ziphius
Daren,

Great trip! I was laughing at the handcart, because I had proposed this idea to my girlfriend to haul some gear out to one of our camping spots last year. She thought it was silly. But boy, you could haul some extra water that way....

It's hard to tell from the photo of the unnamed spring if a manmade dam or lip has been built up around it. Unnamed springs are my favorite.

Man, these pot growers will go to any lengths to find a secluded area for their operations. Arghhh.

Gary has a good beard going, he must be a true outdoorsman. - Jim
10/29/2012
Topic:
Rockhouse Canyon 4 Day Backpack TR

ziphius
ziphius
anutami wrote:
yeah that handcart had me thinking too, if I could just hitch it to my waist and load the kids up in it I could double or triple my range smile

Daren, thanks for posting your epic treks through the Desert.

You gotta check this out!
http://www.mondayhikes.com/12Hikes/hk120220.html


Wow, that bighorn skull on the mondayhikes link is epic. You couldn't ask to find one in better condition!
10/30/2012
Topic:
Culp Valley to Palm Canyon

ziphius
ziphius
Nice trip! Nice to see running water too. I don't do enough one-way hikes, but I like the whole "we'll get a ride with our thumbs" type of adventure. That worked for me in Utah this spring. smile - Jim
10/30/2012
Topic:
Fish Creek Wash Rd Conditions

ziphius
ziphius
anutami wrote:
I talked to Brett at the Ranger headquarters he ran Fishcreek three days ago and said it is doable with four-wheel-drive as there are some soft sand areas. He said they recorded an 8 foot wall of water rushing through the canyon and it is completely different from what it was. His words to describe it were "UNBELIEVABLE". He described it as MAJOR errosion from Fishcreek wash up to Sandstone canyon. All of the trees shrubs and boulders are completely gone! He also mentioned they removed the F1 50 that had washed down from the wind caves over 2 miles. They had to cut it into six sections in order to remove it. He also described split Mountain Road at the intersection of Fishcreek wash being completely obliterated 400 yards on the road and 4 to 5 feet deep. It has since been repaired.


I wonder if the owners of the F150 got billed for their trouble?
10/31/2012
Topic:
Rockhouse Canyon 4 Day Backpack TR

ziphius
ziphius
Daren,

What was your menu like? smile

Jim
11/1/2012
Topic:
Rockhouse Canyon 4 Day Backpack TR

ziphius
ziphius
Nice menu. One of my staples is homemade hummus and pita bread, which is high in protein and tastes good. The pita bread will go for WEEKS in the pack without showing any green.

dsefcik wrote:
Oh yeah...the big bottle of Jack Daniels mixed with Bacardi spiced rum didn't hurt much each night either.....Toast

You know the rule: a minimum of one liter of hard liquor per person per day in a desert environment. You cut it pretty close. smile
edited by ziphius on 11/1/2012
<em>edited by ziphius on 11/1/2012</em>
11/5/2012
Topic:
East Fork Carrizo Creek

ziphius
ziphius
Nice trip report! Great experiences for the kids.


Let's leave any bighorn skulls where we find 'em, so that the next person can also say WOW! Let's remove the backpacks and mylar balloons!
11/13/2012
Topic:
Pinto Wash Petroglyphs

ziphius
ziphius
Great trip report and photos Tommy! smile

Maybe a naive question, but why the assumption that the skull is 'modern'? I've seen skulls on the Channel Islands that are thought to be at least several hundred years old that didn't look any more weathered than that one. Border patrol might remove the skull without giving any thought to the age of it.

I wasn't familiar with Pinto Canyon until I read this thread. There's an old Reader story / trip report here: http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2009/jun/03/cover/
<em>edited by ziphius on 11/13/2012</em>
11/15/2012
Topic:
New Forum

ziphius
ziphius
TR wrote:
Looks good to me, Bob.
I'm getting old. All this about accessing it from the phone goes right over my head.


I'm with you! Don't even own a smartphone! smile
11/19/2012
Topic:
Goat Canyon Trestle Hike Trip Report

ziphius
ziphius
Nice post John! The mortar on that old structure held up much better than the cans embedded in it. I bet a lot more of the structure would be standing today if they had used rocks as their primary wall material. But that probably would have required much more mortar (smaller rocks). Funny, the hawk (or falcon with unusually broad wings) was the first thing I noticed in your photo. smile Thanks for posting. - Jim
11/19/2012
Topic:
Paiute Petroglyphs Stolen and Defaced

ziphius
ziphius
Jeez... that's tragic. They will probably end up in some private collector's living room. Those kinds of folks will go to any level, including lurking on forums such as these, to find out about cultural sites and artifacts. A good reminder to keep mum about specific locations here. Though in this case, it appears as if the stolen glyphs were part of a well-known public site. Sad.
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