16 July 2011

Historic Ranch Tour

Spent the day with Jane and Linda and about 50 others touring two Platte County Ranches first the Collins Ranch near Glendo, Wyoming has been around for 105 years.

Most of the Collins family work outside the ranch; it was interesting that they traded horses for motorcycles some time ago.

They are related to General Collins... Fort Collins namesake... Also related to Caspar Collins... Casper, Wyoming is named after...

Can anyone identify the pointy thing in the center of the following Pic?

Had a great lunch then headed to the Twiford Ranch...

If you can zoom in on this Homestead document, you can see the it was endorsed by Theodore Roosevelt.  This ranch has been around since 1879 with some glorious history and stories.

The area where the original house sat didn't have trees at first but now it is a lush and inviting location with a huge willow.

After history and stories and a relaxing time under the shade of a willow; we enjoyed a great meal... Pitch Fork cooked steak, baked potatoes, salad homemade dinner rolls and PIE (I had rhubarb)

The steak was skewered on the pitch fork tines and deep fried in a kettle of peanut oil... Excellent!

13 July 2011

Ride to Bosler and Back

Just got back from a ride to Bosler, Wyoming and back with my friend Blackie Budd.

the road work on Wyo 34 is going to be great when it's finished. 

 Subille Canyon will be a much safer road to travel... it has always been a great place to view wildlife,

Saw lots of antelope and some fox near Bosler.

Way up on top it's a special kind of beauty, a place where you use what you have.

06 July 2011

Thor - The Movie

After going to Cheyenne to see Florence and pick up some stuff at Sam's Club we got home and decided to go to the movies.  Thor was showing at Cinema West... I really enjoyed the show and remembering the different legends of the names in the show... the movie did a very good job tying present day to the myths of yore... wow, I think its a new record for me last week Pirates of Caribbean and this week Thor; I wonder what this could mean?

05 July 2011

High Plains Inititiave - Building the Wyoming We Want

I attended a pre-meeting (at the Library) to the County Commissioners meeting today and then walked over to the Court house for the Commissioners meeting.  There is a lot of controversy regarding this document and opinions were voiced by many.  I believe there were over 550 signatures opposing the initiative which came about in less than two weeks.

The unfortunate happenings of the day were one of the attendees left angry and a second was escorted out of the building by a Sheriff department officer. 

Other than the editorials leading up to this day, I have not noticed quality reporting on the subject nor quality communication from the commissioners office.

Planning and zoning in the counties and cities of Wyoming will continue to of great interest.

04 July 2011

Wheatland Fireworks

On our way to get Linda, we were able to see a perfect close to 4 July 2011.

Linda, Jane and I enjoyed the aerial show this evening.  Took some camp chairs down town and sat near the Sheriff's building.


Happy 4th!

Happy Independence Day!

On Independence Day, Memorial Day and Veterans Day I always think of the military and service to our great nation.  Those thoughts are always bittersweet.  I think of the men from World War II, like my dad that were so damn proud of their service, all the movies of hero's and great battles and deeds and it is easy to get caught up in the glory of it all; the pride of their time.  Then comes memories of my service and personal experience... no great battles; the greatest hero I remember was a nurse at NSA Da Nang that asked me if I was OK; when she was the one, that dealt with the amputees coming out of OR; the pride I had when I returned home quickly faded when I was spit at and then the first job I applied for, the owner called me a baby killer and told me to get the @#%k out of his place.  Times change and it is a little easier to say that I am a Vietnam Veteran... none of this changes my love of country and I would fight again to keep our independence.  The biggest failing I think we the people are doing at the moment is not teaching Americanism to our next generation; we have the men and women coming home from Afghanistan and Iraq or really any where in the world that are protecting our freedom that we could be out there celebrating our American way of life with and thanking them for their service.  It is too easy to just take an apathetic look on our military today.

Independence comes at a price.  

 God Bless America


03 July 2011

Oaxaca Photographic Workshop

I took Sean on a trip to Oaxaca, Mexico to participate in a National Geographic Photography Workshop.  This was going to be a first in trying to take my kids on some type of adventure... I never dreamed there would be jealousy about who was first but alas I must carry that in my heart and no one else... the trip was a great time; I worried a little about sharing a room with Sean but it worked out very well.  I think Sean got more out of the trip than I did but even I learned a lot from the experience.  One of the greatest things about the trip is we have a wonderful friend Eva Lepiz
Sean of course took much better photos than I did but here are a few of my favorites:

Sean and Eva even helped put together a video.  Eva took the photo I use for my profile photo.
This was a trip I will always remember!!

02 July 2011

Past Travels

I started traveling more regularly when I retired in 2004.  My wife has been my great companion as we explore our world.

Chronology as I remember:
2004 - Rafting Trip down the Colorado River from Leeds Ferry to Pierce Ferry (the Grand Canyon) 8 days of camping; shooting rapids; exploring the Canyon in a very unique way.

A favorite place is Blacktail Canyon... a place where Spirits Fly

Next was going to see Polar Bears... we had narrowed it down to two places in the world to do this adventure; Canada or Norway.  Looking at each trip as a once in a lifetime experience, we chose Norway and so very glad we did.  After flying to Oslo, we flew north to Longyearbyen on Spitsbergen and boarded the Polar Star to search for Polar Bears

We were lucky to see bear and seals and Walrus and Blue Whale and birds and and and

Did I say the people in Norway are wonderful!

After finding Polar Bears and a time back in Arizona we decided to book on a River Boat and travel from Bucharest to Amsterdam.  It was a great way to see a lot of central Europe from a floating home base.

I was glad we traveled from Romania toward Amsterdam instead of the other way around... the reason is we were really able to see the effects of communism and  tyrannical rulers on the people, land architecture and overall zest for life... I remember we had to change stops due to a part for the air-conditioning unit. The captain explained that if the part were to be delivered to Serbia, it might be held in customs a long time or we could go a little further to Hungary where it was easier to receive the part... living in a free world we seldom think about such things... the town in Hungary was so happy to see us that the entire town came to the dock and had a huge celebration. (one of those things that are greater than photos; yet words cannot describe)

We left the river trip excited to travel more so after a time in Arizona we headed to China to meet our friends Bob and Karen.
Bob passed last month, we will miss him.

China and Tibet were a guided tour offered by Vantage Travel.  Vantage is a good tour company not everything is included as some may like you to think; but its a good value for the price... we traveled Vantage on the river trip and it was great... the China trip fell to the tour guide KONG... good luck if they are still using the bozo!  But really, you adjust to the situation travel gives you and have a good time... we loved our trip from the Great Wall to the Dali Llamas Summer Palace to the Yangtze River... even our stories of poor old Kong (he was in it for the money and not for the experience of being with people)

Oh... remember that in China; a hamburger... is just the bun!!

They sell Oxygen bottles at the airport in Lhasa... 4th story room, no elevator, maybe we should have picked one up...

Here we are setting in Arizona with all the warm clothes we bought to go to the Arctic... what to do?  lets go to the Antarctic... back to the Polar Star and lets attempt to go below the antarctic circle...
We made it!!!
Along the way we experienced penguins and Leopard seals, whales and ice and fantastic hues of black and white.  Penguins (and walrus) are not visited or photographed or written about; they are experienced... you experience the sounds and the SMELL.

As we sailed back across the Drake Passage just in site of Cape Horn we said how we thought we would enjoy sailing around the horn on a sailing vessel and then we remembered passing the Bark Europa ... our next great adventure.

We were lucky enough to book passage on the Bark Europa.  sailing is just a little different because you are part of a training crew. Setting sails, standing watch, and helm duty; the cabins are just big enough to sleep two or let one dress and if you need to go to the head, you dance around your partner or they hop into the lower bunk.  Not the typical American cruise where you get waited on hand and foot and fatten yourself in the dining room... this was an experience that I will always treasure.

We bought a house in Wyoming and became Snowbirds... until our next adventure