Sunday, March 9, 2008

Weekend wrapup

  • "So I started out for God knows where
  • But I guess Ill know when I get there
  • Im learning to fly but I ain't got wings
  • Comin down is the hardest thing"
Tom Petty
So friday I did something I have never done before, atleast not in my adult life that I can remember. I did off road hiking into what the locals call Johnson Canyon and Jenny's Canyon. Both areas close next week for the next six months because they are mating grounds for the desert tortoise and the peregrine falcons in the area. Now before I describe the area let me say I saw neither the falcon or tortoise mating amongst themselves or with each other which would have been cool. Most of the area was formed 100's of thousands of years ago by active volcanos or if you are a Huckabee supporter two days after Adam and Eve a week or two before electricity. I had asked the guide to pick a trail where I would be less likely to die and she thought for awhile and then pondered for a little while longer and said you should be okay here but take this walkie-talkie just in case. So there is some Lava rock you climb over early on the path and the trail is fairly well marked. About a half mile in you come to what the hiker's call "exposure" but what Jimmy calls " trip and fall to your death" side of a cliff. As I am trying to decide the best course of action it occurred to me the old witch had called me not so agile, but screw her I'll show her. I stayed to left and made my way down into canyon. I was comforted by the fact that had something happened I had that walkie-talkie.
It was now I noticed some majestic looking bird circling overhead. Huge black wingspan just a circling and circling. I felt like Ray Liotta in Goodfellas with the damn helicopter that had been following him all day. Apparently a buzzard had taken an interest in the old, fat cow that had strayed from the pack, but screw him I was movin on. Into the canyon you can see where some of the pioneers had carved their names into the rock and also read of the flood of 2005 that had tore through the canyon. You can also learn that Jenny's Canyon was named for a teenager who had fallen and died in the canyon. Being about an hour into the hike, seemingly at an end and in no way wanting there to be a Jimmy's Canyon I turned around and retraced my steps out. Back at the exposure I ran into and older couple who got the part of the path nearer the ledge and a group of teenage field trippers who didn't bat an eye at the overlook. I made it back out to the road in about two hours, pulled my trusty security blanket, the walkie-talkie out to notify the guide that I could be picked up. No answer, no response, "is this thing working?", so I sat on some rocks and waited. Oh well I'm sure they would have found me in a day or two eating some raw buzzard to survive. Happily the van showed up in about 15 minutes and shuttled us back for some pool class.
Saturday was trip 3 to the Chuck-o-rama buffet and well nothing has changed same crappy food, same long line of people lining up to stick their heads in the trough and gorge. I watched the Duke-Unc basketball game last night with the dukie girl on campus who is extremely friendly and funny and almost made me root for duke for her but while she was rooting for duke I was rooting for Cameron Indoor stadium to collapse and with UNC winning and no catastrophe sadly neiter of us went to bed happy. Although I am happy that this time nest week my butt will be in Vegas. Back up the hill tomorrow, Peace, Jim


Anonymous said...

Gotta love BobbyC’s classic, classic bit on Secretariat’s stretch run. Here’s another to help Jimmy get up the mountain this week.
“Down the stretch at the 8th pole… JOHN HENRY – like a bullet… JOHN HENRY now taking command… Royal Heroine down along the rail is second… Nijinsky’s Secret is third… But here is the Living Legend, JOHN HENRY.”

Lyns said...

Hi, Jim! I am the sister of your new Dukie friend and just wanted to let you know that she passed along your blog, and I am LOVING it. You are hilarious! LA would not humor me and do a blog, so yours is the next best thing!

swimwest said...

Glad to see that you are really starting to like hiking. I have some great trails for us to try by my house at Blackhawk where there are about 200 steps to really work you. We can race up them when you get back. I love your canyon adventure and am glad that you are finding new ways to get out. Have you tried the yoga yet? Why not, no one knows you there, it would be a great place to give it a try? Miss you lots. I swam for 45 minutes today, getting ready for our workouts when you get back. You will have to teach me the 2 minute workouts with weights and treadmill. I think we are going to have to plan on more time in the workout room then just one hour! Love your stories, keep them coming. Great job Jim. KK

Badger Disguised as a Spartan said...

Hey Jim! I'm glad to hear about your adventures all the time. From your most recent post things seem to be going well and you are enjoying, and taking as much out of this experience as possible. I'm so excited for you, oh and all this tournament talk has been reminding me of you! FYI, Badgers Big Ten Champs in case you did know ;)