Thursday, September 27, 2012

Repairing Rockslides - Part III

Sorry for the delay, here are some general shots from the trip:

This is a 3D version of Yosemite. I am pointing out our work site for the week.
The infamous Half Dome - not a bad thing to gaze upon as you are working all day.
Our abode for the week. (Not pictured - lots of bear boxes to store food, toiletries and anything with a scent. By the end of sorting through things, most people ended up with everything in the box just to be on the safe side. No bear sightings were had.)
In review, the trip was great. I would highly recommend a trip through REI Adventures. It was nice to have someone sorting out all of the details, cooking our meals, hauling in water, and getting us a behind the scenes, non-touristy experience of Yosemite. I would imagine the same principles would apply to their other trips. Dreaming of a trip to Peru or Antarctica with them next. Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Repairing Rockslides - Part II

A pictorial review of the work we did this week in Yosemite:

The aftermath of the rockslide; this used to be a trail through the forest.
Clockwise (from top left): my dad and me in front of the rubble, big pieces of granite, the big pieces of granite after I broke them up by hand (no power tools/equipment allowed back on the Federal trails), progress on the trail where we sanded over the granite gravel, wheelbarrows lined up ready for rocks/sand, my dad winching a giant boulder off the trail.
My "getting-things-done" face as I winch a tree from the ground. Grrr!
So, to recap, we shoveled lots of sand and rock, winched giant boulders from the trail, winched this tree growing in the middle of the trail, moved logs and brush off of the trail, hid pseudo-trails with camouflage to discourage off-trail camping, and blew up granite with shotgun shells and explosive boosters (not pictured, need to get that photo from my dad's camera). In all, it was a lot of work but I think we managed to get maybe a quarter of it done. The trail is supposed to open back up in mid-October. Thanks for checking in. Tomorrow I'll share some non-work photos!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Repairing Rockslides - Part I

So I survived five days of Yosemite, and being offline - the latter being a lot easier than the former! When we arrived to the park, we set up camp, met the other 17 volunteers, and attended our orientation. We learned that our project for the week was going to be helping to open a section of trail that had been decimated by a rock slide three years ago. The welcome wine and beer came out shortly after and we were off and running for the week. Due to a slower-than-death internet connection in Fresno, here's one photo to get things started, more to come tomorrow!

Me and my dad, Day 1, all ready to hike to the work site. (So this is where they steal photos for portrait studio backdrops!)

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Pre-Adventure in Fresno

If you ever have a few hours to kill in Fresno, CA, and you're hungry, look no further than the Hunan Restaurant. If it's possible, this is the most nondescript place from the outside - think alcove in a half-abandoned strip mall with only a rug on the ground with the name of the restaurant. (Thanks Yelp-ers!) When I walked in and looked confused, the host/waiter assured me that they were indeed open (I was the only one there, but it was a little after 5pm and my stomach was still on Central Time).

First up were freshly made wontons. While a little greasy, they were delicious.
Then came the peach prawns (sorry, they are slightly out of focus). Oh man, were these good! Crunchy and creamy with the slightest hint of peach. Worth going back for.
If you come at the right time of year, on the right day of the week, you can also check out this really cool sounding place, Forestiere Underground Gardens. Apparently some guy, who had mad skills as a subway digger, carved out acres and acres of earth from the 1920's-1940's to create a dream world of underground Mediterranean gardens. The website looked awesome and it was ranked as one of the top 5 things to do in Fresno, but alas it's not open on Tuesdays in September. If you are ever nearby, you should check it out and let me know what you thought of it.

Hope to see you back on the blog sometime this week - if the camp store really has the wi-fi it's rumored to have. Thanks for checking in and now I'm off to San Jose to collect my dad and we'll be off!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Dallying in Dallas

Our first nephew was born nine weeks ago to Brian's middle brother, Andrew, and his wife, Sarah. With Labor Day being the first three-day weekend we've had in a while, we decided to drive down to meet Foster in person. We arrived in time to meet him before he fell asleep and then we all found a few things to do before we had a family-style dinner and headed off to bed.

First up was a delicious iced, lavender latte at The Pearl Cup. They promised it was "weirdly good" and they were right!
A couple of doors down, Sarah and I checked out Milk + Honey which she had described it as an affordable anthropologie - and she was spot on!
And finally we ducked next door o find the boys checking out the eclectic wares at We Are 1976. Isn't Foster just the cutest baby ever?