Category Archives: Uncategorized

Getting Ready For The Camino Frances

Icamino like setting goals for myself. Especially when it comes to hiking. In 2017 I managed to log in 349.32 miles for the year. I like to think that is respectable but I know better, hordes of hikers get out there and hike many, many more miles. In 2018, I crushed it with a whopping 117.85 miles thanks to my fractured ankle and surgery.

So what is the plan for this year? Yes, now that we are midway through January and even though we just had snow and it was 3 degrees just 3 days ago, today we are expecting 1-2 inches of rain and it is over 50 degrees. Why not start planning for the spring/summer hiking season? What have I got to lose? With all of the rain that we are supposed to get today, I might get out this weekend!

From now until I get out of school on June 26, it is 153 days. My summer break will amount to a number of days between 65-70, depending on when we return to school. Just to be on the safe side, I’ll say between now and the end of August we’ll have at least 218 days of possible hiking.

Since spring and summer in this part of the country (northeast) is prime, I’m going to aim high and set a goal of 650 miles from today until 8/31/19. I am hoping that I can eclipse that, but for right now, that is the goal.

This hiking will also help in my quest to be in decent shape for the Camino Frances after I retire. Crossing the Pyrenees Mountains is one of the first major hurdles of the Camino and I want to be ready for it.

For the Camino Frances, this is how it all begins. It’s not that far away.

HAPPY HIKING!!!

Woe Is Me….

sick man

I’ve been out and I’ve been in, yacking up, that little one’s a sin.

A day here and a day there, why should anyone care?

I love all my kids, I’d like just one more,

But I’m a little afraid that they’ll even the score.

Old men included, with tickers gone bad,

What’s going on? It’s nothing but sad.

The doctor he says “You need to be come in,”

But the chances of that, they look pretty slim.

I’m now to afraid, I won’t dial the phone, what will then happen if I choose to stay home?

What do we do? Why should we care?

It’s really just stupid and completely not fair.

So come here we will, with fear in our hearts,

To teach all those  lessons and get those kids smart.

So damn that lame ticker, that’s enough about us,

Just be here each day or its under the bus!

 

 

 

 

Getting Ready To Hike Again

jack freezing

Last weekend the first Hudson Valley saw its first snow storm for the New Year. (I’m still leary after the summer mishap, misstep, or whatever you want to call it!) So for the time being, I’ll do what I normally do during these bleak winter days. I’ll start getting ready for the time when I can get back out into the woods.

What exactly does that mean? First, I’ll get on my stationary bike and just ride, ride and ride some more. Regardless of what is said, I find the stationary bike to be an excellent way to get ready for the many hikes that await me.

Next, I take inventory of what I have and what I need.  I find that this is the best time to make some decisions if I need to in order to get my gear straight.

First I start at my head and work my way down. For instance, I have a wool cap that will certainly come in handy during the winter, but also in the early spring when the air is still chilly, especially when you stop for a water break or lunch, it will be useful. Since I just got one of those just a few months ago, I won’t have to replace that.

Moving down, I will almost always wear a t-shirt and a flannel jacket in early to middle spring. Since I tend to run a little hot when I am hiking, this almost always makes it way back into my back at some point during the hike.

For my hands, I never have worn gloves. I sweat way to much and they become very uncomfortable  when I am using my trekking poles.

Now for my legs. If it is at all possible, I will wear shorts throughout the year. If it does prove to be to cold for shorts, a pair of sweatpants will do with the shorts underneath. This way I can take them on and off as needed. I’m pretty old school with my clothing. It’s usually cotton or nothing at all.

Now one place I have a drastic change is in my socks. For just under thirty years I have worn cotton socks. Obviously I think you can guess the number of blisters that I have gotten over the years. If not blisters, then definitely hot spots. I think that those are worse than actual blisters.

On a hike a couple of years ago my friend asked me why I didn’t wear Merino Wool socks. I told him flat out that I thought it was crazy to spend that much money on a pair of socks. What an idiot! From the first day of putting on a pair of wool socks I have been a believer. Not one hot spot, not one blister, the feeling is amazing! The only thing that I do every year is check them out for wear and tear. If I need new ones, I will buy them.

Also on my feet let’s take a look at my boots. I have always preferred a pair of heavier boots, even for day hiking. Right now I have a pair of Vasque St. Elias GTX hiking boots that I have now used for three seasons (2 pairs). I have to make a confession here. I thought that the heavier boot and the stiff ankle support would have prevented what happened to me last summer. I gambled and lost that bet! However, I will continue to use them because I love Vasque boots. They are comfortable, sturdy and come in wide sizes. Everything that I need and want in a boot.

I do use Trekking Poles but one of the Black Diamond poles that I use snapped during my fall last summer. They have been replaced and I am saving that for a review at a later time.

So after surviving a weekend with temperatures in the negative numbers and current ones in the high teens to low twenties, I am ready to keep preparing for that inevitable first beautiful day of spring (or winter) where I can just head out and hike!!!

Look for later  posts on my trekking poles and my daypack.

HAPPY HIKING!!!

B & W @ TP

“To see in color is a delight for the eye but to see in black and white is a delight for the soul.”

– Andri Cauldwell

Here are some black and white photos taken as dusk approached at Trinity Pawling School. As always, I was waiting for my daughters hockey practice to finish.

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Christmas Day

Watching the Polar Express for the 35th time,

Sugary delightfulness a pleasantly pacified delusion.

Orbs melting into the tube, Poor Scrooge, terrorized by the hobgoblins, relents.

Ralphie, on the verge of an adolescent explosion, believes.

Glazed eyes barely able to open, slits of ignorance reflect off of the screen.

Cindy Lou Who laments the sanctity of Whoville.

A call of “Squirrel” does not divert.

So the day drags on.