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The 101st running of the Race to Mackinac

August 1, 2009
The skipper in the Manitous

The skipper in the Manitous

Very slow race yacht race this year – not much wind. We didn’t finish until Tuesday afternoon, usually we finish sometime during the day on Monday. The Valkyrie was doing well through about 2/3’s of the race, holding our own, near the front of our section when we took a fateful gybe too late into the Manitou islands passage and got stuck too close in to land as the wind shifted and pushed us in. We bobbed there helplessly as all the little boats we had passed over the previous days slowly caught us and passed us in the middle of the channel, and all we could do was watch.  In frustration we slowly worked our way up the coast – and I mean slowly, 0-.5 knots per hour for a good 15-20 hours, enough to drive a crew bonkers. Read the rest of this entry »

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Rocking out offshore with REO/Styx on the Imjatse

July 14, 2009

Twenty of my sister’s friends came cruising on the Imjatse Friday night.  That’s a record-shattering number and the boat handled everybody easily.  I believe this was our third annual event with this crew, and the biggest and possibly best yet.  One of the best nights of the summer. 

Watching REO Speedwagon from the boat

Watching REO Speedwagon from the boat

We picked everyone up at the dock at around six and headed straight for Northerly Island from Monroe Harbor and anchored (with a bit of slippage and re-anchoring) out just offshore in time to enjoy the sunset and hear the end of the .38 Special set.  Next up was REO Speedwagon and we heard them loud and clear from the water.  A bunch of guys swam and Brent entertained not only our boat but many of the surrounding craft with what is difficult to describe with words, fortunately I had my trusty camera with me and shot some video to commemorate, see below. Read the rest of this entry »


Things to do in Denver if you’re alive

March 10, 2009

Lots to do in Colorado in early March.  It gets quite warm and sunny in Denver, and the snow is often the best up in the mountains.  See below for some ideas:

Ski the steeps at Snowmass with your brother-in-law and the brother of your brother-in-law (did I say that right?).

Scott and Mark Baby about to go big

Scott and Mark Baby about to go big

Watch Big Air Friday at Snowmass from the best Apres Ski bar in Snowmass, the Cirque

Big Air Friday from the Cirque bar

Big Air Friday from the Cirque bar

Go Rock climbing in Morrison Colorado, outside Denver.

Bouldering

Bouldering

Do some backcountry skiing into Francie’s Cabin near Breckenridge

Francie's Hut in the backcountry outside Breckenridge, Colorado

Francie’s Hut in the backcountry outside Breckenridge, Colorado

Go mountain biking at Matthews/Winters Park near Denver

Mountain biking Matthew/Winter Park with my friend Pete who lives out there now - lucky bastard

Mountain biking Matthew/Winter Park with my friend Pete who lives out there now – lucky bastard

Apres Ski with a ski bunny or two

Apres Ski in Snowmass

Apres Ski in Snowmass

Take your little nieces sledding

sledding with my amazing nieces

sledding with my amazing nieces

Take your nieces sledding at the Snowmass Club

Take your nieces sledding at the Snowmass Club

Ski Breckenridge

Skiing Breck with Ryan Weaver, in from Chicago for the weekend

Skiing Breck with Ryan Weaver, in from Chicago for the weekend

Ski Arapahoe Basin

The fabled Palivicini at A-Basin

A-Basin

Snowboard Loveland Pass and hitchike back to the top of the pass.

Hitchiking up Loveland Pass after an embarassing attempt at snowboarding

Hitchiking up Loveland Pass after an embarassing attempt at snowboarding

Stay and visit with old friends in Denver and eat a yummy meal

Hang out at the Hotsprings pool in Glenwood Springs

Hanging out at the Glenwood Springs pool, late February

Hanging out at the Glenwood Springs pool, late February

Eat lunch up on the mountain and watch people compete in skiing off cliffs freestyle at Snowmass

Snowmass Freestyle cliff jumping competition from Gwyn's

Snowmass Freestyle cliff jumping competition from Gwyn’s

Go to the greatest mountaineering store ever, Neptune Mountaineering, in Boulder, check out their museum and talk about famous climbers with the famous staff and owner Gary Neptune.Incredible Ice Axe selection at Neptune Mountaineering in Boulder

Party and grill out with thirty  new friends at the amazing Blue Sky Basin at Vail, gorgeous view of several 14ers including Mount of the Holy Cross and Mt Elbert.View from Blue Sky basin in mid March, 2009, lots of folks grilling and enjoying

Go bouldering in Morrison, Colorado.Bouldering

Stay with some old friends in Boulder that have become quite a bit more successful than when you knew them a few years back!The super fun and terrific Teegarden family from Boulder!

Take your girlfriend snowshoeing in the backcountry after spending the night in a backcountry cabin

Backcountry snowshoeing and telemark skiing

Backcountry snowshoeing and telemark skiing

First day, hiking in to the cabin

Leave a Comment » | Aspen, Brooke and Courtney, Colorado, hiking, Lisa, Mountain Biking, Partying, Skiing, Traveling | Permalink
Posted by Adventurer


Cubs and Sox, back to back

August 14, 2008

Sunday night went to the Cubs game with four buddies.  Monday night went with Lisa and her girlfriends.  Similar experiences and at the same time very different experiences.  Guys at Wrigley is about drinking and carrying on and taling about baseball and watching the game and joking around and betting.  It’s in a very

Wrigley Field August 2008

Wrigley Field August 2008

old stadium, 1908 I believe?  In the middle of a neighborhood.  Rules on going in are very laid-back, you can bring drinks, kids, backpacks, whatever.  Beer guys, food vendors walk around all night.  Super fun, an experience in Chicago for sure.  At least once a summer if not more.  Then there are bars all over around the stadium so we migrated to one afterwards, the Nisei I think?  Next to the Dark Horse.  My friend Art ordered 4 gin rikkis which are basically glasses of gin and we played darts, very competitively, then I made my exit, taking it easy on the sauce as I had to work Monday.  Cabbed home.

Now the White Sox/Red Sox game was a bit different.  Still take the red line, took it right after work, but you take it south.  Get off, walk across the street and into the stadium.  No bars or restaurants or really neighborhood that I could tell surround the stadium.  It’s new, nice, giant megatron TV screen in the

From the bleachers at US Cellular

From the bleachers at US Cellular

outfield, huge billboards, flashing lights and fireworks going off.  Much more of a spectacle and entertainment, much more of a show and also a baseball game.  Still very fun but a completely different experience.  The girls I went with were all from Massachusetts and talked about people, relationships, etc all night, which is still

The girls I was with

The girls I was with

fun, but as I said a different experience entirely.  Though very much the same in many ways.

Great times in Chicago, back to back ball games at different stadiums, something not too many cities offer so easily as Chicago does.

Leave a Comment » | Boston, Chicago, Lisa, Partying | Permalink
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Sailing in the North Channel of Lake Huron

July 31, 2008

After the race to Mackinac Island Lisa met me up there for the party.  Then we drove four hours east into Canada to meet my folks on their sailboat in Little Current Ontario at the Spider Bay Marina.  They cruise on their sailboat every summer for 4-6 weeks.  How cool is that?  They have their 38 foot Ericson totally decked out for living aboard.   They sleep on the boat every night that whole time.  It’s so cool – all sorts of little hidden coves and bays inlets and islands – similar to cruising the Carribbean in some ways but a much more wilderness experience.  We went hiking one day to

View of Topaz Lake from a cliff

View of Topaz Lake and my feet from a cliff

Topaz Lake – a deep gorgeous, big blue lake surrounded by quartz mountains.  So stunning.  You could jump off cliffs into the water.  Craziest thing was it is a dead lake – so no seaweed, algae, anything.  The perfect temperature.  We spent four nights on the boat and they went by so fast.  Parties on shore or on other boats in the harbors most nights.   We drank and partied on “Rum Rock”

View from Rum rock into the Harbor, folks boat is far right

View from Rum rock into the Harbor, folks boat is far right

one day in Baie Fine – couples from five boats met on shore for ‘cocktail hour’ and drank a 23 year old bottle of rum, ate appetizers, swapped stories and generally enjoyed life.  It’s the craziest subculture, all these sailboats out there cruising around, enjoying nature and each other, all with a great attitude.  My father I don’t think I’ve ever seen so happy, he absolutely loves it up there and loves his boat so much.  The entire cockpit is screened in and can be opened to the air, screened in, or glassed in if it gets too cold.  Grill on the back, dinghy, solar panel.  they can go completely off the grid.  Pretty exciting stuff – makes me feel like a slacker, just doing daytrips on my boat.

Looking for a prince

Looking for a prince

2 Comments | hiking, Lisa, Partying, sailing | Permalink
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Talons Challenge

January 31, 2008

Was in Vail last weekend.  Skiied the Talons Challenge – what a great time.  Thirteen black and double black runs in one day, 23,000 feet of vertical.  Was quite sore and slept really well that night.  Got a free beer, brat, hat and pin, plus got my name on a plaque for all eternity.  Did the event with two fraternity brothers.  We had a great time. 

My Talon's Challenge Card

My Talon's Challenge Card

I had my skis tuned the night before, and they actually de-tuned them, so they were like skiing on rounded edges, no purchase on ice whatsoever.  Made for some extra challenges.  I’ve been skiing since I was seven, lived in Colorado for five years, and raced on the ski team in high school, so can get around all right on the slopes.  Had a discussion on religion in the bar after, my good friend Paul is very liberal and a great debater, always have terrific discussions with him.  Stayed in my buddy Brinks’ (known as Stinks or stinky all through college-his wife isn’t too enamored with the nickname, however it is appropriate, especially at altitude) in-laws place in Edwards, several million dollar joint and wonderful people to stay with, warm friendly and generous.  The fellow Rich is 62 and did the Talons Challenge with us – actually faster than us as he did it with his buddy.  Amazing.  good to live in a ski town!  The event was cool – they had people at the bottom of the runs to punch your card around your neck after each run.  Also a tent with marathon-like snacks and gatorade, plus music pumping.  Was very cool, glad I got to go, have been talking about it for years.  Also was great to hang out with Stinky.  Gave him a new name, The Stink Machine, which in my opinion and his, is hilarious.  He pictures a machine with a giant crank that emits odor as you crank it, so he insists that when you call him that you make a big cranking motion. 

 I booked the flight on miles – and accidentally booked out of Rockford Illinois!  Whoops.  1.5 hours from chicago by car.  Actually less, an hour twenty – and free parking.  I got a spot 50 feet from the check-in.  I think I saved money over cab fare – and the blue line to Ohare from dontown is an hour, plus the walk to the check-in is forever and then to the gate is forever, draggin skis and a heavy bag – so I think it is actually a wash – with 5 gates total at Rockford international, I was seated and ready to board in one hour forty minutes after I left my home.  And had to carry my bags and skis just a short distance.  Very cool, I’d do it again.

Leave a Comment » | Colorado, Partying, Skiing, Talons Challenge | Permalink
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Bulls game with Danes, Danish perspectives on America

November 28, 2007

Went to the Bulls game here in Chicago last night with a bunch of Europeans, mostly Danish people.  Tons of fun, it was really interesting to hear their perspectives on America.  Apparently they just plain don’t have the sporting events like we do, with all the entertainment and production – laser shows, fireworks, dancers, pumping music – to get the crowd fired up.  There second biggest sport next to soccer is women’s ‘handball’ – which is played on a basketball court with a small goal at each end, how crazy is that?  On TV all the time apparently. 

 They had a very positive take on America and most responded to my “How do you like America?” with and enthusiastic “I love it!”.  We are friendlier than they expected, and they like the ‘can-do’ attitude.  That was from a big boss – he says he is very impressed by the in-grained entrepreneurship and the American dream being very much alive, in that a person growing up with no means can still become very wealthy in America – he said that would never happen in Denmark.  The girls think our fashion is terrible!  Not that I’m at all into fashion, I found that interesting.  One girl said she pretty much shops at the same chains that she does in Denmark.  She was a Korean girl who had been adopted when she was three months old to Danish parents.  A funny point/complaint from her- our sidewalks are apparently very rough on her high heels due to their uneven-ness – ha!  Denmark’s tax rate ranges from 50% to 74%….  yikes!  Tough to get wealthy.  I didn’t push too hard for negatives on America and positives on Europe – but we all know these are very numerous as well.  Long European vacations, long hours in the US, socialized/free health care, etc.

All in all a terrific night, we ate and drank until long after the game was over.  Also met a Korean guy, and an American who had spent the last nine months traveling the world.

Leave a Comment » | Denmark, Partying, philosophy | Permalink
Posted by Adventurer