Thursday, May 6, 2021

VW Vans

Guests came back from side by siding and told me they were a big traffic jam on the sand hill. I drove over on the trials bike and there was a VW van convoy. A few of the vehicles were broken down on the stairs and sand hill and was creating a bottleneck for outgoing and incoming traffic. 

I ask if anyone needed help and they all said they were working it out and thought they were going to be fine.

Monday, May 3, 2021


 Jax loves Nations Towing. He gets excited when we pull in. Jumps out and with discipline checks every single vehicle for squirrels.

Linny and I each had a brief moment of no work at the same time so did our first trials bike ride together.

The River

Couple times a week Jax and I head out to the back yard and drop into the creek going to the river. No real rains so far this year so it hasn't changed much but what surprises me is the river itself. It's gone up almost not at all.

The two sandbars that have turned the entry point into a lagoon in each direction disappear barely for a day or two occasionally and then come right back and right now they are as big as they were all winter.

The boat ramp that can flood well past the top isn't currently even being touched.

According to the snow pack numbers nearly half of the snow pack has melted and there's only about eight feet left.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Sent Me This

 Rachel sent me this.

Heather sent me this. Said it reminded her of when I coached the girls indoor soccer team we had.
Linny sent me these.

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

It's Quiet on this Night

 Jax and I laid on the porch above the steps for awhile tonight. I put the head lamp on red so the bugs which have just started to show up don't get us. I saw the first ringtail because of my headlamp I saw little red eyes looking down at us so it was hot dog time to feed and Kit@Kaboodle. Soon the feeding nights that so many reviews mention will be back. Many will be pregnant and they'll show up at dark dark to make sure they don't miss a meal. What is now a 24 hot dog night will consistently be in the 40s to 60s and occasionally above 80. They'll all show up at the same time and guests will sit on the porch and marvel at how close they can get as they meet the ringtail, skunk, fox, and raccoon all coming to the porch. It will be good to see all my friends at one time again and they'll be introducing new friends to the world of the porch as they have their babies. I've hardly seen them over the winter. 

Was a busy day for the Wind Caves as traffic converged from all directions. They have grown more popular with time.

The crickets are more and will continue to increase until mid summer. When I first moved here no matter what the temperature I left my window to my room cracked. I didn't know what was out here and hearing the crickets all night was soothing. It was only when they'd stop I'd wake up and think "What is here that the crickets don't know?" Shortly they'd resume and I'd drift back to sleep.

As the summer wore on there would be a few less crickets each night. Some of the ones I knew by their call would be gone. Who is killing the crickets? It's not the fence lizards, they're too small. I've never seen a side blotched lizard munch on a cricket because they exist at different times of the day. Then one day hiking up Hurrah Pass with Kobae, Kobae pulled into the shade. Just a couple feet from us a whiptail lizard came and sat in the sand. He moved a little bit here and there, partly in shade, partly in sun, that doesn't make sense. Then she started digging and I learned their bellies are sensitive to movement in the ground, like ground radar. She dug up a cricket and ate it. How am I so confident it was a she, because they all are. They replicate themselves even simulating the act with another female producing an unfertilized egg that morphs into themselves. I think Jax's happiest place is on top of the Wind Caves.

If there's no wind and you start at the cliffs to the left side of the caves it will bounce to the right side and you can get seven to nine echos.

The crickets make a comeback in the fall and there are a few each night as the nemesis of the whiptails stalk and hunt them in the warm months and in time the leopard lizards get most all of them and the crickets will survive to return for another year.
There is so much more time for this night. I wish I could enjoy them all. However the days are long and there is much to do. When the remodeling was over there were lots of extra mattresses and no place to store them so I took all the queens in my room, got rid of the frame, and just stacked queen mattresses on top of each other until I almost have to get a run at the bed to get in it and yet it's comfortable. I'm tired. I use to imagine my feet and legs relaxing and then sleeping and then working my way up relaxing everything until it came to my brain and I'd relax it and be asleep immediately. Now the days are so busy and the work so much that each evening when I hit the sheets it's almost instantly relaxing and asleep. I sigh it feels so good. A little tingle that the body and the mind will get to rest. 
Kobae sometimes pees, always in threes. Sometimes he poops. Sometimes he lets a third liquid out and that's his reserve. Should be ever run out of food he has a reserve to get him through. He only releases it if he's comfortable, knows where his next meal is coming from and has little stress in his life. I created something like that when I go to bed at night. The body and the mind relax but I know the dark is full of shadows. Somewhere tucked into a crevice there is a part of the body and the brain that it is their time to work. They listen, they taste, they hear, they feel. They detect the crickets not chirping and a hundred other things that they've listed as significant to monitor while the rest of the body and mind sleep. Through the night I know that's a fox eating out of the bowl, a raccoon scraping against a water can, a vehicle going to Wind Caves at 2am, I'm alerted to all of these by the night shift. They are diligent.

It's Quiet Tonight

The wind finally quit after five days. On the porch, the sun has set, it's moments from dark dark. One ringtail most every night, a skunk or two, few foxes showing up and the raccoons after midnight. Terrible fight last night outside my window in the wind. Jax jumped off the bed and wanted to get involved but they like to fight so what's the point? Still a three to four foot drop off at the river where the beach usually has been for all these years. 

Last weekend a lot of traffic across the river at Caveman Ranch. I thought we finally had neighbors but when Monday came there was nothing, and nothing since.

Hiking guest told me today they found a cactus blooming. Probably  the Claret. I'll go look around tomorrow.

As I'm typing I hear a jet at 30 something thousand feet above me. Probably Denver to L.A. or San Diego. All those years I lived in San Diego right by Miramar Naval Air Station home of Top Gun then. I rarely noticed the noise. But here I notice. I remember flying over this exact spot in the mid 90s somewhere from Denver to Anaheim to look at a building for the indoor soccer company. I looked down from the left side of the plane in front of the wing and I saw the evaporation ponds across the river from here and I saw nothing else. To myself, the big fish in the small pond of indoor soccer, "What kind of moron would live out in the middle of nowhere?"
On that day I didn't know I was just a few years away from hitting the wall. In the business world that's defined as go, go, go, 200 miles an hour, sleeping where you work to save the drive time to a hotel, normally sleeping on planes so you can catch up on sleep while still going as fast as you can. The wall was coming for me and my 20 plus years of 100 hour weeks were about to crash head on where you have nothing left. I thought I was seeing the light at the end of the tunnel as we made more money. It was a bright so it was close to the end. With time I realized it was a train coming from the other direction.
I hit the wall and the train hit me. I was at a Board of Directors meeting and after founding the company and leading it for 20 plus years I told them it was over. I'd hang while people took my place but then I was going to do something else. As I was driving from our Austin facility to the Tucson location I saw people out in the sticks walk out of their house and get on their dirt bikes and take off and I thought "I need some dirt trails."
As I was driving to our Boise facility I saw people walk out of their homes and grab their canoes getting in the Snake River and I thought "I need a river." The search began. I kept adding things to my list and it got more difficult finding what I was looking for. I looked for years and in 2006 I found Camelot Lodge, out of business, the camels gone, but having done years of camel tours. I was looking for solitude and rest so being out of business was just what I wanted. I tried to get out here in my BMW but in those days the road was bad and I got four flats and four bent rims. That's how I met Nations Towing. Eventually when the real estate agent brought me over Hurrah Pass I looked out and saw the evaporation ponds and thought. "I am him. I am the moron." The agent said "I'll introduce you, then what?" I said, "Just drop me off. If I can't cut a deal I'll walk back." He drove off.

 I talk to the Haydukers that come through and many tell me they're looking for something too. Maybe this. They hope they'll find it on the Hayduke Trail.The Whistler, Derrick, Danielle, and Teresa, all searching. Wanderers.

The first yellow headed blackbird showed up. That means the red-winged blackbirds have left. A few Brewers blackbirds will show. They have such a sheen to them. And shortly, the cow birds will be here with their R2D2 sound.
For the first few years I didn't take any guests. Then I took a few. They told somebody. They told somebody else, who also mentioned it to someone they knew.

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Just Stuff

 Propane truck was here.

There's a little water trap on the way here now according to Linny's Jeep.
I'd been sending people down to the boat ramp where all the kayaks are telling them to get into the river they need to go in between the two sandbars. Nobody said anything but next time I hiked down there, aren't any sandbars anymore.

Linny has learned to ride the trials bikes and that's where you'll find her when she's not working on the houses, hogans, or rooms.