Sunday, July 27, 2014

A Ring-tailed Kind of Night

Kitty, the ring-tailed cat that comes to the porch fairly regularly over the last year has babies. About two weeks ago she invited them up to the lodge from the river and not long after the sun goes down they take over the roof and porches. Chasing each other around and practicing their climbing skills. The faint noise of little feet is all over the outside of the lodge for hours every night. Tom has witnessed their fun a few nights and taken video but the flashlight has never been bright enough for the camera. That won't be an issue tonight.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

A Story

Tom pours a little water on Kobae during his dinner to cool him off though he doesn't look like he appreciates it much. I'm going to tell you about my Friday and since I've never figured out how to make paragraph breaks on Blogger, if it can even be done, I'll do it with pictures. As guests depart down the driveway to spend the day at Arches the power in the whole lodge goes out. Tom resets it, it goes out, reset, out, reset.......for an hour. Tom walks through the rooms to see if anything out of the ordinary is going on. As he opens the door to the bunk bed room he's hit with a blast of warm soggy air. There use to be a sink in the bunk bed room. When it was removed the water lines were left in there. When Kristin was in there cleaning three days ago she pushed the bunk bed up against them and the hot water one turned on and had been spraying hot water for three days. The carpet is soaked, the bottom bed, and the floor is all under water. Tom turns it off and figures that is his power problem. Tom then hears the White-tailed antelope squirrels sounding the alarm. Everywhere he looks they are all sounding the alarm that a predator is about and they are looking at Tom. That makes no sense. Tom has been feeding them for years. Tom hears a noise under one of the porch chairs and the Spotted skunk emerges to spray. Tom jumps out of the way just in time. All the doors to the lodge are open to air out the water leak and the skunk smell goes everywhere within. Tom calls Johnny across the river and he comes over, crawls under the lodge and says "there ain't no wires that got soaked by water." So, that isn't the problem. Tom calls Lance in town who is standing in as the solar guy while Ken is out of town. Lance comes out and has some suggestions and things to try. He ask for some tools. Tom walks over to the garage and hears something inside banging on the door. When Tom opens the garage door a big Rock squirrel runs out. Looking inside the garage where the Rock squirrel has been locked up for three days, life vests are on the floor, gasoline and turpentine are spilled on the floor along with paint cans, parts of vehicles, screws, washers, and an assortment of other items. Lance and Tom think they've found the problem and after an hour and some change of no shut off Lance heads for Moab. Fifteen minutes after he leaves the power goes out. All night long Tom goes outside to reset the power until about 2am. At 2am it won't come back on no matter what Tom does and the guest are without air conditioning. Tom turns off every breaker in the lodge and then begins turning them back on until he finds the one that seems to consistently make the power go out. The one to the main fridge. Nervous that the meat may be spoiling in the refrigerator Tom is deciding what to do when he hears a scratching noise on a front porch pole and recognizes his and Linny's friend Kitty, the ring tail cat. Coming down the pole behind her are four smaller ring tails. Kitty has babies and lots of them. They are everywhere chasing each other around, across the roof, up and down the poles, across the roof upside down and drinking out of the water bowl on the front porch. Eight hot dogs, a pack of turkey, and a pack of lunch meat all disappear to Kitty and her kids. It's been a very long day and Tom hasn't slept for quite some time but Kitty and hers are so funny. Tom tries to video but the light is not bright enough. At 4:30am Kitty and hers all come back down the pole and head down to the river.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Day Off

Tom spends the day on the beach catching up on reading.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Kane Creek Canyon

Nicole and Tom travel Kane Creek Canyon for the Base Camp Trials Group last ride. Linny is off to Salt Lake and San Diego for a few weeks and Nicole returns to Chicago.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Beach (Linny and Nicole)

Lockhart Basin

Nicole and Tom venture into Lockhart Basin.

Amasa Back Morning

It's 6am when Linny, Kris, Brad, and Tom hit the trails to visit the Amasa Back and it's Indian village, petroglyphs, Spanish petroglyphs, arrowhead flakes, and pottery sherds that Tom found during his winter explorations. The pieces of painted pottery at the village site are slowly growing and Linny has a pretty good day finding pottery sherds not previously found at the 4th site by the side of a Big Horn trail.

Faux Falls and the Tea Cup

Linny, Nicole, and Tom hike to Faux Falls and the Tea Cup on the other side of Moab.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Sunday Evening

The Beach is Back

During Linny and Tom's first five years at Base Camp there was a great beach at the bottom of the hill. Then when the flood waters came two years ago the beach moved to the other side of the river. This year with the Colorado snow pack at 150% it was Linny and Tom's hope that it would come back. It has.

Chasing Elvis

After Kobae chases dogs, and sometimes while, he has a little extra energy he expends on the front stairs.

The Island

When Base Camp guests kayak the river one of their favorite destinations is around the island just to the southwest of Base Camp and then back up the other side where the current is not so strong. After a couple months of high water it's bestTom tests the route for changes prior to sending guests out. There has always been a little eddy right at the front and slightly to the right of the island. As Tom is pulling around to the right side of the island he is suddenly pulled into the eddy which is 20 times stronger than it's ever been. The eddy is recoverable and the rest of the trip goes smoothly.

Sunday, July 13, 2014


Saturday Morning Trials

It's rare when I go outside third person to describe a blog post but the last few days, and this day especially, Linny and Nicole have both improved so much over the last week it needed mentioning. This morning on the trail back to Dripping Springs it got pretty rough in some places and still Linny and Nicole wanted to push on.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wednesday Morning Trials Club

Trials Group

Nicole, her son Brad and his friend Kris, visit Base Camp every year for a week or so. Last year Nicole used one of the trials bikes for part of a day and really enjoyed it. When she returned home she bought one. This year Nicole has come to Base Camp bringing her Sherco with her. Linny and Tom's morning trials practice has grown.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


While Tom attends the Red Rock 4 Wheelers meeting Linny and Nicole go bowling.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Linny's Room

Setting up a screen and projector, Linny and Nicole watch a movie.

The Missing Roof

Linny and Tom located the missing back porch roof, on the lodge roof.


It appears the Eur-Asian dove Linny and Tom affectionately have named Mom and who made a nest in the rafters of the front porch had an unhappy ending last night from what was likely a ringtail cat.

After Midnight

Returning from fireworks sometime after midnight the wrecked UHV was still in the road. Guests arriving the next day said they didn't see anything so it was apparently removed on Saturday as it would have been hard to miss.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Wreck

The 4th of July wasn't done with Linny and Tom. On the way to see fireworks......

Time to Go

Unable to find the several hundred pounds of roof that is still missing Linny and Tom, at 7pm, head off to see fireworks.

The Long Morning

It's been a memorable 4th of July already with the micro burst or tornado that hit the lodge in the morning and it doesn't let up. Linny and Tom got the two side by sides into town for work during a short break with no guests and they are ready to be picked up. Linny and Tom have to ride three vehicles back from town. They take the truck into town, then Linny drives a side by side to Kane Creek. Tom takes her back to town and she drives the second side by side to Kane Creek, then both to the bottom of Hurrah Pass, then again to the top, then again to the bottom. Riding behind Linny, Tom watches the faces of all those she passes in both directions. Faces of amazement. Short in stature, huge in heart, Linny thinks nothing of it. It's just today's job. After four hours Linny and Tom have returned all the vehicles to Base Camp.

Friday, July 4, 2014

2 a.m.

Tom has awakened. Something is different. Above the fan, above the air conditioner, he hears what sounds like a jet, no it's a train, something large is coming this way. Walking out on the front porch he sees a few clouds but mostly stars. The noise is growing louder. It's at the bottom of the driveway coming up the hill but Tom doesn't see any lights. It's getting darker. Swirling dust almost as if a tornado. But not out here. It sure looks like it though. Tom closes the front door and runs for Linny's room. The front door blows open, the back door blows open. Linny's door blows open and Tom runs inside the room. The whole lodge shakes and there is an explosion. The power is out. Linny doesn't wake up. It is quiet. Tom walks out on the front porch and much of the back porch roof is in the Desert Willow tree. More is lying by Kobae's pen. Tom walks out with the headlamp to check on Kobae and he is just inside his house sleeping with his head on the ground. Tom walks out onto the back porch and most of the roof is gone.

Thursday Evening


Each evening one rabbit eats under the tree. Not scared of Linny, Tom, or the pack of squirrels that gather for Kobae leftovers.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014