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Hiking, Western US, Yosemite / 01.11.2009

I was in San Ramon, California on a business trip to meet the people who worked in the Voice Mail Tier I/II support center who I had just been assigned to manage. Since I was conviently close to Yosemite, I stayed over an extra week to backpack through the wilderness for 8 days. My first day of backpacking was on October 17th, a little late in the season with many facilities closed or cut back in an area famous for its heavy snowfalls. The positives was were vanished crowds and...

Hiking, Smoky Mountains, Southeast / 27.09.2009

Eagle Creek Double Loop Hike - Smokey Mountain National Park This hike starting at Fontana dam completes a double loop formed by hiking up to the Appalachian Trail on the NC/TN divide 2 times via Eagle Creek, then by Hazel Creek, returning to the NC valley via Jenkins Ridge and Welch Ridge respectively. Highlights of the trail are the areas documented by Horace Kephardt in "Our Southern Highlanders" when he lived near Hazel Creek / Jenkins Ridge near the settlement of Medlin for 3 1/2 years in the early...

Cycling / 01.01.2009

It is a new year and time to set resolutions and to measure progress! My Cannondale bike odometer reading is 1637.4 miles. How many miles will I ride in 2009? Ten miles a day would make 3650 miles, but 4000 miles is a good round number. Whatever the distance, I need to get into shape for the Assault on Mt. Mitchell Century in June. I weigh 167.5 pounds today. Only 4 months ago I was about 10 pounds less. Taking 10 pounds off by June would help with...

Hiking, Smoky Mountains, Southeast / 13.12.2008

I left directly from work Friday afternoon and drove through Robbinsville, NC on the way to Twenty-Mile Ranger Station in the Smokies. Along the way it had been raining and as I reached Robbinsville there was a mix of rain and snow. I arrived late at night with the snow coming down. Several young guys arrived and parked soon after I pulled in. They were planning to night hike to the top of Gregory Bald. My plan was more modest and involved hiking a mile or so into...