Welcome!

Linda JeffersIn a world of so many great photographers and writers, I am venturing into some unknown territories, leaving comfort zones, finally very willing to practice the art of seeing. By maintaining the practice of posting daily photos, I hope to continue learning about the possibilities that I trust are out there for the taking.

Come join me on my journey!

Mating bugs

Ths sun had been up for 20 minutes this morning when I spotted these two bugs at it while on a bump & grind hike with Katie.


Off to LA in a couple of hours. Can’t wait to see many of you tonight!

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ADZPCTKOP and Baby

Many of you have heard me talk about the PCT Class bandanas I make up every year. You’ve also heard me mention the ADZPCTKOP hiking weekend I attend before the current year PCT hikers hit the trail.
Well, click on this link below to see a photo of me in action on the ADZ website and learn more how the tradition of gifting the Class bandanas began.
http://siechert.org/adz/pct_bandana.htm

P.S. Baby is doing ok, I think. I’ll take another photo soon and post it for you to see how Baby has grown in size and how many feathers she has now.

I read more about baby hummingbirds. Ray and I thought Mama was neglecting Baby at night by not sleeping in the nest any longer. But what I learned is that a certain point in Baby’s development Baby begins to be able to generate her own body warmth and no long needs Mama to sit on top of her.

I also read that the baby’s self defense is that she knows not to peep and make noise for Mom. That’s why Baby is so unanimated! Duh.

Joyful Jim’s good news.

Check out JJ’s April 8th journal entry!

Way to go JJ! Get to work cleaning up all those loose ends on your hike preparations.

Love,

Gottago

My Friend JJ.

My friend JJ (Joyful Jim) is thru hiking the PCT this year. Initially he was going to start the PCT April 14th. But something happened to his knee. Time and the healing process will only tell when JJ will be able to begin his thru hike.

Maybe you will join me in sending good healing vibes to JJ and his knee so he can recover soon and fullfill his dream to hike the PCT this year.

Gottago and JJ, July 2004, sharing a great meal in Santa Monica while commiserating after having just gotten off two different trails that year.

PCT thru hiker sighting

Katie and I went out for a training hike on the PCT this morning at 8:50am. We headed south on the PCT from Hwy 74 (Palms to Pines). About 15 minutes into our hike, we ran into Paul Smith my first thru hiker sighting!!! He had his ULA pack off and was heading into the bushes.

I’d put some PCT Class of 2008 bandanas in my backpack hoping I’d start running into PCT hikers. To get Paul’s attention I said, “Are you a thru hiker? And will you be going to ADZ?” Because he answered no to going to ADZ I handed him his orange bandana.

Paul said it had taken him 9 or 10 days to get to where we found him just shy of Hwy 74. He mentioned he’d hiked 18 miles the day before. He talked about the nasty wind he’d encountered many days on the trail since he started. After his tent stakes blew out and his tent collapsed, he set up the tent again putting large rocks on the stakes. At 4am after the tent blew down again, he packed up and started hiking. Oh, he also mentioned how the elevation gain up to Mt Laguna had kicked his butt.

He talked about Pete Fish’s trail crew working south of Table Mountain, maybe by Sandy Jeep Road. Later, I did notice what great shape the trail was in from Hwy 74 to Table Mountain’s shoulder (a distance of 4.8 miles).

The flowers were out in full bloom. The were lots of blue and purple flowers I don’t normally see. I’m not great with flower names but I think the blue was Baby Blue Eyes and the purple – Penstemon. Still in bloom were many other wildflowers too. The air was cool at 4900 feet. A nice change from the desert floor. By 11:15, after a snack break at Table Mountain’s shoulder, Katie and I turned around and headed back to the PCT trailhead parking lot enjoying the perfect hiking temperature now in the low 70′s full sun and a little breeze.

In previous years, just south of the PCT gate at Hwy 74 (by a hundred yards or so), I’d noticed a water cache. This year, there was no water.

Also, the small sign directing hikers to the Paradise Cafe was not up. This small side trail to the cafe is located on the left 100 yards before reaching Hwy 74.

I checked out the PCT trailhead monument north of Hwy 74. There was an igloo marked for PCT hikers and filled with about 5 empty water bottles. No register. Paul Smith had said he’d noticed 5 other hikers were ahead of him who noticed had signed the register back by the last water source (sandy jeep road?).

Paul Smith – PCT Class of 2008
Began his hike March 29th.

Day 14 and what is this black form where baby’s wing should be?

Ray won’t let me call the baby hummingbird Babette.

I’ve been noticing Baby doesn’t ever really stand up and flap or use its wings. The mass or black form that is visible in this photo has me concerned. Ray says, “I’m crazy.” But I think maybe Baby is deformed. Would that be horrible? How the hell will it ever be able to fly if it only has one wing? What is Mama going to do with Baby if she doesn’t fly? What ARE WE going to do with Baby if she doesn’t fly?

I’m glad I won’t be around to have to witness this if it happens.

Mama didn’t sleep in her nest last night. I think Mama is too young to be a good Mama.

And where the hell is the egg? One day it is just missing. I looked on the ground and saw no evidence of a shell knocked out of the nest. Mama couldn’t pick the egg up in her beak. So………I think Ray plucked the egg out of the nest. I can’t believe Ray anymore when it comes to animals. Remember when he didn’t tell me about Babette and all the feathers he found? I think Ray did something with the egg because he was afraid Baby was going to fall out of the nest while getting on top of the egg.

What do you think?

P.S. I just told Ray what I wrote in this blog. He swears he didn’t take the egg out. I believe him.

Yesterday was day 11.


First 9+ mile hike and first hike with NEW pack. (Yes, LR, a new pack!)

I’ve not been training like I have in the past before a hike. Today’s hike was a 2100 foot climb up local Murry Hill. Temperature was thankfully no higher than 82. I carried about 25 pounds of weight in the new Osprey backpack I bought at A16 in LA before the Baby Meeting. The hike was hard for me but I did it and without injury.

I always use my McHale backpack on hikes but was curious to see if my back pain would be less carrying the Osprey. I was surprised to find I liked the feel of how the Osprey carried the weight. I’ve always believed a McHale pack was the only pack for me because the pack transfers weight to my hips so well. I can’t have any weight on my shoulders or I really hurt. The Osprey kept the weight off my shoulders and felt quite comfortable. So I’ll try the Osprey again and with more weight in a couple of weeks. I’m thinking the Osprey works better in how I seem to have more space to pack up my goods inside. I attached the tent on the outside of the pack where one end slides into a side pocket. Keeping a wet tent on the outside makes sense. I can set up my tent without having to open up and go through gear in my pack if it is raining. I also like that the lower zippered portion of the pack has a very easily accessible and roomy sleeping bag compartment, separated from upper backpack gear by a fabric shelf.

Mt San Gorgonio north of the I-10 Freeway (Almost a 1000 feet higher than San Jacinto.)

New pack.

First day of the pro/am at the Kraft Nabisco Tournament here at MHCC.

Morgan Pressel

Lorena Ochoa – the #1 top ranked woman golfer in the world.

Today while out on a walk carrying my backpack with Ray, we ran into Lorena Ochoa on the 4th tee box of the Palmer Course. I could not resist asking her if she’d mind Ray taking a photo of her with me. She’s so nice with everyone. She agreed. Had this been during tournament play on Thursday, Friday or Saturday, I would never have bothered her.

Then Ray and I spotted Morgan Pressel. I patiently waited for Morgan and her amateurs to finish on the green and then asked Morgan for a photo. I’ve never been able to ask for an autograph or photo in the past.

Didn’t Ray take a couple of great photos? He’s good!