Monthly Archives: June 2017

Hot Springing

Driving through Central Oregon late Sunday afternoon, somewhere between Springfield and Sisters, looking for a campground to settle into, when the thought struck me. Maybe there’s a hot springs around here? I fired up the search feature on my amazing Garmin GPS, started typed in “Hot” and up popped Belknap Hot Springs, 12 miles ahead. Oh sure, I thought, no way I could be so lucky. My back was sore from a lot of driving and I sure could use a soak so it was worth venturing off the road to check it out. Maybe they were open on a Sunday? This ain’t Mormon land so the chances were good, if they were still in business. Maybe they had campsites? Is my serendipity such that I could actually soak and stay?

When I pulled in I found it to be big and classy, no run down hick hot springs here. The front desk was like a 3 star hotel and the lady found me the very last RV spot available and she was surprised it was open. They even had two hot pools, one for the general public and one for the RV guests, of which I was suddenly one. After the tepid 99 degrees of Norris (they want the people to stay in longer so they can sell more beer) the 104 did wonders for my back.

So there I was in the canopy of my travel truck with a raging river at my feet writing this post (without internet unfortunately, too far from the main building). I’d had three separate soaks, a good shower, a dinner of cold organic beans with white tuna, and dark chocolate for dessert. Life don’t get much better, I thought…

But wait! The next day I was more direct in pursuing a hot springs to camp out in. I recalled a fine time I had at Miracle Hot Springs a few years back when I had to pick Steph up at the Boise airport. It’s only an hour from the airport and I stayed there the night before. So, I called them from the freeway as I was passing through Boise and they said spots were available. I asked about wifi and the girl said no but their other operation down the road did, so she set me up there. When I arrived I got a nice little spot for $15 and a senior discount all day soak for $6.50. Now here’s the kicker. After setting up camp I came back to the pool to soak and asked about the warmest spot. It turns out the pool is just a large communal warm swimming pool, but it didn’t matter, since they recommended I shoot over to Miracle (just down the road) and get a private room since I was already checked in, and a senior. Really?

Sure enough, for no extra charge I got my own room until 1700 (it was 1530 when I checked in). There was a hose bringing in hot water straight from the springs and before long I had it up around 110° and I was cooking my naked ass off in private. OK, kaboom, it just got way better! Total price for the whole package, including campsite: $21.50.

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Point Of Entry

I was on the Oregon Coast last Sunday and I decided to find the point of entry for the 2017 Great American Eclipse, according to my program TetonPath‘s interpretation of NASA’s data. My GPS guided me right to it, a nice little State Park called Fishing Rock, and I doubt if most people living there know the importance of this location.

Click the image below for the map:

I hiked out onto the point and took these shots. Here’s Fishing Rock: (Looks like a man and his dog awaiting the big event…)

On the rock:

To the South:

To the North: (actual crossing point…)

Here’s one more shot to the South…

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Blacked Out

I’ve got my truck canopy totally blacked out now and I’m packed and ready to roll. I had Driggs Tire throw a stock muffler on this morning and she sounds pretty good. It’s not a high-performance model but it has quieted my roaring engine down a lot.

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Muffler Madness

My mechanic recommended Art’s Muffler in Idaho Falls to install a nice little Flow-Master onto my sweet sounding exhaust system so I called them yesterday and made an appointment for 0800 this morning. When I got there the asshole at the counter told me that nobody wrote my appointment down, they were booked solid and he told me to come back another day. Really, after a 1.5 hour drive?

There were several techs standing in front of the place, I could tell they worked there because they just had this muffler guy look about them, but they had no time for me today. Oh well, with the brake work I was going to get done on top of it they just lost out on several hundred of my hard-earned bucks!

So screw you Art’s Muffler in Idaho Falls! May this blog post float to the top of a Google search and haunt your sorry ass forever.

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My new tool TPDca is done. It’s the latest member of the family of apps built around my eclipse program TetonPath. The Dca stands for Distance calculator and it contains some cool polyline geometry to play with around Teton Valley.

I also determined that our backyard is just 5.57 miles from the direct epicenter of the Path of Totality. How sweet is that!

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The Water

I was perusing through the photos that Steph brought back from the South and came across this one of her 14 year old grandson, Dillan. I don’t know about you but this kid looks like a young Elvis to me. Presley was born in Mississippi and grew up in Memphis. Dillan was born in Washington and has grown up in the South. Maybe it’s the water?

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Wild Ride

My little buddy lets his hair grow long but the ride to school this morning must have been particularly wild. Judging from the smile I assume it was enjoyable…

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Tree Down

I came home for lunch today and found a tree down. This was a key young tree that helped block the view of Ski Hill Road and we’re sorry to see it go. What’s more concerning is that the base looks rotted out and definitely needs an autopsy by a specialist. I think we should just let her stay there until that happens…

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I realized this morning that I hadn’t run the new carb/header setup on my truck past 45mph so I took her out for a spin. Once we pulled out of Tetonia into the 65 zone I let her loose. She rapidly shot up to 3300 at 75mph and roared like a lion. Maybe I should get a muffler I thought briefly before quickly discarding the thought from my mind. This old girl runs! I pulled into Lookout Point, shut her off, and popped the hood. There was minimal heat and the clakety clack noise I used to hear as the emissions hardware cooled down was completely gone. I closed the hood, smiled broadly, then took this photo of the Teton River over it’s bank. Who cares about that…

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On Her Chair

Piper has quite the morning routine. At 0400 with the moon shining bright through my bedroom window I hear that meow. If I ignore her she jumps up on my tall bed (which is getting harder for her every day) and walks over my body. She waits patiently while I do my stretch and prayers and then we head to the kitchen. Piper likes to walk (waddle) in front of me as if she’s leading me.

I start the coffee, turn on my computer, open the garage door and flash the driveway lights to scare off any large animals and out she scampers. When she comes back in she gets her gravy, her stomach massage, her back brushed, her treats, her lap time, and then off to bed on her chair where she sleeps the rest of the day.

Which strongly begs the question “Who’s got who trained“?

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June 9

This day always tugs at my heart a bit, it’s the birthday of someone I lost touch with many years ago. Today she turns fifty and as I extended my body this morning in prayer, I sent out a special one in her direction. Happy birthday great.

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New Carb

Our mechanic Bob came through big time for me this week and installed this gorgeous little Weber Carburetor that I bought off Amazon. My sweet little travel truck is purring (actually, I should say roaring) and ready to roll this summer.

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Springs Stop

I’ve got a new first stop going on down at Teton Springs. It’s pretty cool cruising through all the million dollar homes sitting on a gorgeous golf course early in the morning. I pull up right to the curve at Headwaters Grill and wait for my ride to emerge from the resort area. I’m learning all sorts of good stuff about the place, like the $400 plus room rates and the type of people that can afford it.

I’ll take my $25 a night Laughlin Nevada rate any day…

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Marker Pond

I’ve been staging in the morning at the Teton Range marker since I don’t have to go to Hatches Corner. It’s a nice little park area with lots of shade and today I walked across Hwy 33 to grab a shot of the pond:

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Butternut Chicken

I really don’t like cooking for myself, but today I figured I better whip up something I can eat for a couple of days, so here’s my new creation, Butternut Chicken:

I started with a large butternut squash that I cut in half, placed face down in a baking dish with water, and cooked at 350 for 1.3 hours. The free range organic expensive chicken breasts were cut into pieces, seasoned with sea salt and ground pepper, coated with a flour, cornmeal and flax seed mixture and then browned in grape seed oil.

I sauteed some onion, mushrooms and garlic up, which I overcooked a bit because I was busy flipping chicken, but they came out pretty tasty. When the squash was ready I stripped the skin off and mixed it up in a bowl with a little organic maple syrup. I put that mixture back in the baking dish, layered the chicken on top and then finished off with the saute. Then I baked it at 350 for 20 minutes. This is my own recipe btw…

It came out great! You can see more pictures by clicking on the photo below.

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