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Rabbit Hole Day sure got cold. - Baxil [bakh-HEEL'], n. My Sites [Tomorrowlands] [The TTU Wiki] [Photos]
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January 27th, 2008
11:38 pm
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Rabbit Hole Day sure got cold.
Per ceruleanst's suggestion to go do something fantastic for Rabbit Hole Day rather than make it up ... I went and had me a good old-fashioned style AdventureTM with roaminrob this weekend.

We gathered our adventuring gear, hiked out into the wilderness, rolled on Random Encounter Table 12A ("Snowy Terrain"), and no sooner had I pulled some nifty +1 sword out of a big drift than ...

Lurching snow zombies
Snow zombies!

(*hack hack hack*)

Snowmobiles!
Snowmobiles!

(*hack hack cough*)

Snow gryphons!
Snow gryphons!

(*flee flee flee*[1])

As far as actual scenery, we did get one great panorama before a storm blew in and everything went white-out. Found plenty to take pictures of anyway, and it was a lot of fun. For the full lineup of trip pictures, click on the smiley.

Snow smiley!


Also, new usericon.

--
[1] What, you want we should have attacked these? We're like level 3!

Current Location: ~/brainstorm
Current Mood: quixoticquixotic
Current Music: Tori Amos, "Winter"
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From:roaminrob
Date:January 29th, 2008 03:20 am (UTC)
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> Also: It's been ages since I've seen an external frame pack.

It's worth pointing out that, when Bax was assembling the gear for his Epic PCT Adventure, he pointedly ignored the advice of possibly every single self-styled outdoor gear expert: he found and bought an ultralight external frame pack.

Actually, that doesn't quite do justice to his quest for the external frame pack. He spent quite a lot of time to finally locate a fellow who was hand-crafting the only known ultralight external frame packs in existence, and paid the guy quite a bit of dough to carry one of the beasts on the PCT.

For some reason -- dunno, can't quite put my finger on it -- I can imagine Bax, in dragon form, soaring over the mountaintops ... carrying a rigid set of aluminum stays bound by bundles of fabric.

That said, he really likes them, and there are some design features of his ultralight external frame pack that are pretty nifty. Also, when a design flaw led to the frame breaking -- twice, I think? -- on the PCT, the inventor helpfully sent out a replacement at no charge. So, cool people all around.

But, still ... ultralight external frame pack? Seriously?
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From:baronlaw
Date:January 28th, 2008 05:01 pm (UTC)
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Where did all this adventuring take place?
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From:baxil
Date:January 28th, 2008 05:21 pm (UTC)
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We drove as far as we could down Bowman Lake Road (FS-16, just west of where I-80 hits Highway 20), which was about half a mile, and kept hiking up it.

My last snow camping was right in your neck of the woods, though. :) (Echo Lake and a little hiking into Desolation.)
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From:dragonzuela
Date:January 29th, 2008 01:21 am (UTC)
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Oh, good, someone else who hates snowmobiles. I can't think of a worse way to enjoy the serenity and beauty of a forest in winter, unless maybe a snowmobile towed a sled with a massive stereo system and a fountain that spewed garbage.
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From:roaminrob
Date:January 29th, 2008 03:12 am (UTC)
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I don't hate snowmobiles (or their riders).

They're easy to hate; they're noisy, their engines belch out some pretty foul vapors -- some of which triggered a bit of the ol' asthma while we were out there -- and the riders obviously weren't out there for the same reasons as we were.

But, then again, I also enjoy snowboarding. A chain-driven snowboard would be a ton o' fun, and come to think of it, that's pretty much what a snowmobile is. And, I enjoy climbing. Used to do a lot of it, once. Climbers occasionally get comments from bystanders, and have to tangle with various groups, because sometimes climbing gear gets left in rock, damaging its natural aesthetic. Popular climbing routes in arid areas can have a lot of climber's chalk on them, leaving a dust white trail of hand-sized prints up the rock. As if that wasn't bad enough, I've also had a lot of fun on a mountain bike. Oh, and I've ridden a horse on a couple of trails, too.

People get outside for different reasons. Sometimes, to appreciate, and sometimes, to go fast. I don't generally mind what other people are doing out there, so long as they make every effort to minimize the amount of permanent damage they do while they're there. Leave No Trace, etc. Mostly, I'm glad that they're out there at all. That means that there will be a few extra people that don't forget what it's like to get away from comfortable human structures once in a while, and a few extra people that will raise their voice to preserve the areas that we all enjoy.

And finally, snowmobilers specifically tend to run up and down populated areas anyway. It's too much trouble, and too dangerous, for them to go ripping through the trees. Bax and I were sticking to the road because it was easier than postholing in the deep powder, so our encounters with snowmobilers were as much our fault as theirs. If we had opted to head off the road a few hundred feet, we would have only heard them occasionally.
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