Ramblings of an Insane Man

What is it to embrace the notion of artistic expression? What is it to conjure images in one’s mind a greater human evolution? And if these questions were answered, how would it be put to use by our ancient ancestors set forth upon the Arctic plains of North America 12,000 plus years ago? Would they have imagined a society transfixed with political or otherwise convoluted notions that one must impale themselves on a social system bent on devouring itself on the notion that a greater political power has our best interest in mind? How has it come, in the pass of of Human evolution that we have become transfixed on the idea of voting into power, the contradictions of one persons idea of a happy and fulfilling life vs the idea that we must all contribute to a society that continues to worship, historically, the idea that political power, no matter how well intentioned it is, focuses on greed, wealth, and war, not it’s people. It never has.

I am a believer in the tides, the current, the swell of the ocean, the constant downward drift of the glacier, the omnipotent erosional forces of the Earth upon itself. The force of the river, the perpetual shift of seasonal onslaught gaining the landscape. Not of political bully play.

From the perspective of person born of this insane culture, yet who rejects it to a certain extent, I believe it is time for us to all ponder something far different that has been presented to us since birth. Why not move, or shift our perspective away from ideas that politics and partisanship are the singular way for us to all be in rhythm with what is ours for the given: the notion that we can all be at peace and not be courtesan to a system that does not have our best interest in heart? The notion of politics is one of futility to the embrace of those who desire real and genuine peace. It cannot and will not be the keeper of subsistence to the longevity of our species. If this notion is wrong, then so is the Human Race.

When I speak of artistic expression, it goes far beyond the notion of what a piece of technology can offer; wether it be a digital camera, computer, paintbrush, or even a piece of paper and pen can offer. I speak, humbly, of something greater: the mindset that we can become something far greater than the extraordinarily limited offerings of politics and commerce. These things have been engrained deeply within us for as long as any of us can remember and longer, by far. These notions have led to nothing but war, poverty, and dismay of the entire non-human world. As well as our own. Yet we are not different from them, we are them. We are them. This is who we are, unbeknownst to the internet news feed that most take for gospel. Time to make a shift people…

The “shift” I speak of is obviously not a new idea. There have been “shifters” around as long as the first human “politicians” have been around. There has been dissent as long as anyone can remember, and a lot, lot longer. Dissent is what makes a developmental case for real progress. Without it, we are all slaves. Which we all are I might add. Time to break free of the oppressive system that has taken hold of our evolution since our beginning and conjure something new. Then we will be free. It is time, I believe for all to re-think what it is to be happy and content. Happy and content is not what the masses of the world are. Not in America, not anywhere.

So how do we do this? Myself, as a Human, struggling to make a payment to the bank, knows not what that it is exactly. I do know that a more than gradual shift towards something non-political is the real hope for who we are, and more importantly, for the sake of our children, who we will become. If, and when we can accomplish this, we will be appreciative of our neighbors, our surroundings, our air, our water, our Earth, and all who else inhabit this beautiful planet.

I wish to step into the wilderness for a spell; that is the place where genuine reflection of our species and all species can occur, I wish the same for you, even if you don’t think you should, can, or don’t have the courage to do so. Think radically, think different. Don’t be afraid to speak out. You are the voice, not  the politics. Act as though the system does not exist and you are supremely righteous. Do what is right and courageous, not what is expected of you as “Americans” by the status quo. Be real. Be supremely real… Be an artist in it’s truest form.

It is all a frame of mind, and it is extremely important to our children and all the other creatures who inhabit this tiny place we all call home.

Then we will be free, and not before.

If you have absolutely no idea whatsoever what in the hell I am talking about, best go back to Facebook and start over.

Here we Go Again

Here we go again. My mind has spent the day wandering about the empty landscape of my skull and coming up with lots of groovy ideas for trips and adventure in the Great White North. Problem is, I currently have a busted ankle, and no matter how much I work and scrape, I have yet to get a leg (as it were) over these damn house payments and bills to be able to leave long enough to have some time to myself and enjoy the art of traveling, bicycle touring, and mountaineering. This has to change. And it will.

26 months ago, I was sitting in a little shack next to the Ogilvie River, just after breakup, at a time of magnificent high water in the northern Yukon. The ice pack over most of the river was still 36” thick and the water level so high, the mighty stream swelled up, changed course, and destroyed the road not 2 miles from that little shack I sat in to pass the time. The all dirt and gravel Dempster Highway, which leads from Dawson City (essentially) Yukon, to Inuvik Northwest Territories is one of the grandest places I have ever been. It is a spectacle of utterly wild and northern arctic and subarctic landscapes, filled with massive rivers, barren and rugged mountains, tundra, pingos, Caribou, Grizzly Bear, Moose, and Wolf. It crosses the continental divide three times and after traversing the barren and tundra covered arctic landscapes of the far north, ends at the small NWT’s village of Inuvik, a place thanks to the Ogilvie’s bad temperament, I have not yet seen. I reckon August would be a good time for another attempt. Due to broken ankle, no money and other factors, this August is out. I’ve got another year to figure it out and make it happen. I figure riding directly from Haines is an option. On the other hand, driving to Dawson City and starting from there would be best, besides I’ve already ridden all of the way from Haines Junction to Dawson anyhow. Then, when I returned from Inuvik, I could drive the truck across the Ridge Road into Alaska and do a quick jaunt up the Nabessna Road and into the northern portion of the Wrangell Mountains, an area I have not yet become acquainted with.

I miss it up north, I miss the Interior. Haines is a great place to live, but I miss the vast forests and tundra of the far north. I must heal up, make some dough, and get this shit into gear. Three years is too long to have to wait between these adventures. The following months will be challenging indeed. After taking off the air boot today to inspect my “broken ankle”, I have begun to seriously doubt the reliability and integrity of the medical profession. I stiil have yet to even speak to a genuine doctor about this. I was simply told, after 5 weeks of being in a cast, that I was “in need of surgery” by an unknown radiologist whom I have never met or spoken with. That was going on two weeks ago, and still have not heard from anyone in regards to when this supposed operation might take place. After I called the clinic in Juneau a week ago, I was instructed to not call again. “We will call you” I was told. This whole thing is starting to feel like nonsense to me. Looking at my ankle today makes me think it is fine and I should get on with life. I’ll hold out for a while longer I guess, hopefully someone will call soon. All I know right now is that my bicycle is calling my name….

Act Accordingly

Being out six weeks now with a broken ankle, a fall at work has produced disastrous results for my life here in Haines. Six weeks after the fall, I am now still waiting for word from the clinic in Juneau to merely get scheduled for supposedly needed surgery, which, all said and done is going to cost me many more weeks of recovery, possibly totaling 16 weeks of time spent on my ass and not working to make house payments, catching fish for the winter, and cutting much needed firewood. All can be done now is to surrender to the Universe at large and hope this will all work out somehow. This experience has caused a great deal of pain and psychological suffering that seems to be a great and unbearable burden. That said, I am grateful nonetheless. It has allowed me the time to come to terms what my goals in this life really are… Although it seems I have known them all along. Not sure what the immediate or near, or even mid range effects this will have, but a struggle is at hand now. I will keep the faith. I have held off on sharing this with facebook friends… It is in my face… luckily, the woods still speak a soft poem to me…

Life is never a notion to be expected of. There are always going to be mysteries that lie ahead. As Thoreau wrote some time back, “If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”

I have taken heed to this in recent years, but the challenges of daily life make hard to grasp at times. I try, I really do, but every once in a while, I get derailed, severely. I have a tendency to take on the loathing of life and I must say, it does not serve me. Or anyone else. So what is the point. The philosophical notion that we are all guaranteed a possibility of well being and happiness is true, but it is not a notion that can be expected without refrain. We must believe it. And believe it to it’s core. That is where I have fallen short. I want to believe, I want to gain from this notion’s laying of everlasting gratitude and sense that a world might emerge that will provide for all. Alas, I do not see this all the time. Instead, I often see a world of pain and suffering amongst humans and animals that is unspeakable. I try hard to be positive, but it is unwaveringly difficult. My petty situation is but one of minor inconvenience. There are are larger difficulties at hand. How can the human race intend on providing for itself, when it cannot provide for the remainder of the planet. As humans, we possess the  undeniably holy gift of thought and perception above and beyond that of the rest of the natural world, and as of yet, we have not even begun to harness this power. God is not what I speak of, but instead a sense of ourselves and the world surrounding us at large. This is what is important to me.

My struggles at current time are merely a reflection of what the rest of Humanity are going through. These are the most trying times in history of both Human civilization and therefore the natural world. This I know. Technology and it’s Human dependence prove it. Peering out the back door of my home, I see an entire world that the bulk of Humanity does not recognize. It is there, it always has been. Hopefully, it always will be.


A paragraph from the book I just can’t seem to actually finish… maybe that is the point; maybe it is not supposed  to be finished…

“Just south of the lodge known as Bell II, I look through a clearing in the forest and see for the first time Canada’s great and glaciated Coast Range. Craggy peaks engulfed in ice and nary a road any where near them, I feel a washing aesthetic come over me, similar to seeing for the first time in many years the Canadian Rockies weeks earlier. I am coming home to a place I have never been, and a heartache for all things wild and free develops within, and a budding sense of realism penetrates all that this pedal north is becoming. Thoughts of my past life in Moab are becoming a distant memory, with visions of the North encompassing all of me and all I will become. This place, the Cassiar, her mighty rivers and expansive forest, begin to feel oddly familiar. There is a vague yet noticeable tinge of something ancient in these forests; something unexplainable that has catapult me into a womb of wilderness and animals. I see a Black Bear, then another, then another. The concepts of the modern world drifting from my heart; the destruction I feel I have left behind, the crying of a world gone mad, and the never ending forest are all I see now. In retrospect, I am quite certain that it was at this point my life changed forever. Never again could I be satisfied or feel safe in a world full of madness and decay. Here, my heart lost in a sea of timber and mountains, I see nothing but balance and I could never again return to what I had left behind. I was still a long way from Alaska, and if what I was experiencing here was only a precursor, I felt I might simply explode when I arrived in what the Athabascan’s call, “The Great Land”.”

Question All You Have Been Taught

The following piece was written, uploaded, deleted, and uploaded again. It is a work-in-progress

Also, If you want to get the most from JRB, and really want to read the stuff I put on here, don’t just wait for it to be posted on facebook; SUBSCRIBE!

You can do this by pushing the “follow” button to the left and entering your email address. In fact, at some point very soon, I will stop posting JRB to Facebook altogether. Just Rolling By needs to be it’s own entity, not something that is read because folks see it scrolling mindlessly through Facebook…


One of the things that is perpetually on my mind these days as so many more before, is the notion of modern life. Seems we have become an article of economics, and the conceptual hows and how nots of the best and most fullfilling way in which to live one’s life upon the ever deepening demeanor of modern civilization. As Thoreau wrote, “What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” This has always rung true with me, long before reading for the first time “Civil Disobediance”. I remember not so long ago, on a long distance bicycle journey throughg Alaska’s Arctic that there seems a disconnect between who we have become and who we really are. Since childhood, I have been dumbfounded by concepts of material possesion, and the means to support the idea at large, versus the the path that we all must take to achieve personal happiness, and how it might affect the world as a whole and who we are in relationship to the planet. Too many people’s happiness and well being seem rooted in the degredation of planetary and community health. This is a tricky one, this notion, and it begs those who might follow a deeper and more compelling path of what might be considered “true” happiness, to re-consider what is really at stake. Thus, there are questions that seem to ride on my shoulder on a daily, hell. hourly basis: What do we as a species require to be fullfilled? What are the underlying needs that we all have to feel safe, happy, and socially connected? Without damaging what most in our arcane and insane culture has led us to believe? My belief is that we have created a society that has empowered nonsense and belittled growth and sincerity.

How can one feel deeply satisfied with the concepts of the modern work “ethic”, paying for and endowing to banks, lending institutions, schools, social security, IRA’s, stock investments, real estate ventures, medicare, health insurance, car insurance, licensing fees, building permits, taxes, mortgages, rent, internet access, cell phone coverage, fuel costs, vehicle maintenence, hospital bills, pollution, environmentral rape, social ignorance, chemical dependance, pornography, corruption, crime, false religion, bureaucracy, and the general bastardization of a society that we have allowed to be run by those of a moraly corrupt disposition? It is total and complete nonsense to me.

I  wish to live a relatively simple life. One that is mostly free from government intervention, one that is free from scrutiny of the status quo, one that is aimed at health of self and surroundings, one that rely on a community that rspects itself and those who are in need, and the only way that this can be achieved, in my very small and humble view, is to gain what is lacking. What I speak of is a concept that would eliminate all politics, law enforcement, voting, religion, crime, dependance, and corruption of all kinds. This is a concept, unfortunately, of a radical nature, one that the human world has never , ever seen before. Ever. Religion and politics pretend to teach it, the under payed teachers of our youth pretend to convey it, and the government claims they have it, But none do.  Without it, the human world will self destruct and those not prepared will suffer.  The human condition seems to be fueled by greed and control.

There is only one true answer to the accelerating demise of this decrepit civilization. Personal Responsibility. That’s it. It is that simple. I see it lacking in every aspect of modern culture and it is destroying us. However, it sure is giving some well paying jobs to priests, politicians, welfare workers, doctors, lawyers, and law makers.

If you don’t have this basic, required  trait, GET IT. if you don’t, you are old news and will be left behind.

OK, E-nuff… off to have an adventure or two.

Socially Unacceptable

The places that are wild and free are special and deserving of our utmost attention. The places that are a faction of corruption and dismay are places that humans have altered to to fit only themselve’s, and by definition, are neither wild nor free, but instead are made swiftly to submit to and are held in bondage by a race set on domination and desrtuction for it’s immediate gratification of false pretense, only to be held responsible for not only their own destruction, but the demise of all those wild and free creatures around them. These are not notions I have learned in school, but ones I have learned in the forest and in the mountains an in the desert. I have learned this from listening to the animals that inhabit these places and from  serving the woes of those who have not. I am not a wise man. I am a simpe man who desires and ultimately demands the best of those who’s intentions are pure and the downfall of those who’s are not. A world that is in harmony would not question such a notion or a man that speaks such. This I know, and I do not know this because the internet or the television or the media tells me so. I know it because I listen to a turbulent world of a struggling planet and it’s coherts in distress. For these reasons I do not believe in a system of politics or a system of voting; because a system of either is a system that serves only itself and nothing more. This is my truth. I know that I am rejected intelectually by many of my peers and my family for stating these neccesities, but I am not alone in saying. Unpopular beliefs have been punished for milennia and is nothing further from the truth than one who goes along with the status quo just because it is socially acceptable. The Human condition has been on a long and dangerous path for many, many moons and, since I was a child, I have known that a change has been occuring, at least in regards to the Human perception of the universe at large, yet perhaps it is not happening fast enough. Paradoxally, it is likely my own perception of the concept as a whole that permits me to think that this is happening too slowly, and yet the notion that things are happening at it’s appropriate timing is correct on a cosmic scale, and that all that we might do to carry our burden is to guide one another and help each other to listen to the forest, and the water, and the wind. To listen to the Animals, as they have as much to say as we ever have, and to forget that we are more important or  more relevent than all other creatures. To think as such is a Christian doctrine that has misguided the Human Race and set back it’s spiritual evolution and higher calling for  untold numbers of years. It is time to stop this madness and live the lives we were meant to live. If you think I am mad and don’t know what I am talking about, all you have to do is lsten to the wind speak to you and look into yor heart; then you will know all you will ever need to know.


Haines I love the fact that I can gaze out from the deck of my home and peer into the dark forest and see the contrasting colors and shades of the snow reflecting form it’s floor. I love the fact that Alaska is a place I have dreamed of my whole life and I am finally in her. I love that I have a home that fits my basic and artistic needs. I love the fact that I have a family that has supported me in all of my worldly adventures an has not judged me for such. I love that I have a woman in my life that is crazier than my myself and backs me on the decisions I make to create a better and more adventurous life for myself. I love the fact that I have friends and acquaintances that allow me to be me. I am thankful for the fact that I can gaze, from the deck of my home, and see Alaska’s fantastic Chillkat Mountains. I love that I can see active and flowing glaciers from many spots near my home. I am thankful for the many aspects of the world that I am only now coming to understand. I am thankful for my bicycle and it’s manifestation of travel and foresight. I am thankful for all of the friends and peers I have known in the past whom I rarely speak, but think of often. Thank You… I am grateful for the adventures I have yet to embark, and I am thankful for my health and age. I love the fact that the world is an ever evolving place that one might allow a change to occur, if only one has the courage. I hate the fact that I sometimes become paranoid of the world and the people in it, but I am thankful that I have the power most of the time to overcome it and, once again, feel joy. Thank You.

Call Me Crazy

The other day, while nailing hardwood flooring the the sub floor of the house I am being paid to re-assemble  (a re-model), with the radio cranking out all things I mostly abhor when they are not playing music, an advertisement came along with a woman purveying her stature for election to some arcane political office, enticing all who listen that what Alaska needs is a better economic future in the form of upholding, and the enticement of more drilling for oil, the further decimation of one of the most fragile places on Earth. Her main and only stand point for election was one of ensuring that Alaska be pushed and pushed and further endowed that we have the top place in the extraction of fossil fuels to fuel it’s economy. This was her only standpoint. Now I ask, would I really want to vote for a person who’s main and only objective for Alaska’s future be one of a dying technology without so much as a faint mention of what might be possible for future generation upon generation; with the notion that far greater concepts might take hold in this world of today as we know it? Especially in a place with as much eminent resources of beauty and wildness that this magnificent place offers? Seems like backwards thinking to me. I know this for a fact: there is more to our way of life than mere economy. It takes a different form of thinking that we have been on the verge of for generations now, and for political offices to endear the contorted thinking of more raping of the landscape and less of altering our way of life and thinking are preposterous to me.

It certainly is surprising to me, however, when I go to Mountain Market on occasion, there are still those that seem to feel that it is some how in fashion to keep their truck running while they sip their coffee inside. When I see this I think, “good thing fuel cheap:”… at $4.40 a gallon for gasoline and $4,80 for diesel, it sure as hell isn’t cheap. Not that price is the issue, because it certainly is not. Having respect for yourself and all those around you is important. This mentality is exactly the sort that will keep officials aforementioned above in office. Not that I believe wholly in the concept of government or voting for that matter; to me, it is an arcane ideal that is required to vanish and the notion that we need to take complete responsibility for ourselves instead take it’s place. I realize that this notion will stir the shit pot, and most will disagree, that we need government and such, but what we need, in my opinion, is real and genuine spiritual growth in regards to the natural world and ourselves. All else will fall into place. Call me crazy…

School Bus Living is Not a Crime

My mind occasionally wanders back to the time in Moab, back in 2010, when life there became altered, and a change occurred. To tell the story in completion would require a significant amount of mental and emotional strain that I do not wish to embark on at this time. The story, in it’s entirety, will be told, just not today. I recently came across this document that I created back during that time and though I would re-share it.



Well, boy o boy, where do I begin… After being removed from our homes on Kane Springs Rd (given 48 hours notice), we finally found a wonderful spot at the low end of Spanish Valley Drive on an acre of land, sharing it w/ two wonderful people who made us feel welcome and comfortable. Now the ax wielding Grand County Building Dept. has swung again. Apparently a “friendly neighbor” called the county and complained that people were living “illegally” in school busses. Now keep in mind that this nice piece of property is surrounded on 2 sides by the worst kind of Moab redneck shit one could possibly imagine… 20 or more (and toxic I might add) cars, abandoned, line the once pristine creek that runs trough. That is only a fraction of it. Refrigerators, ovens, wrecked trailers, drill pipe, oil rig misc, and damn near anything else one could think of also line this creek. And it’s “illegal” for us to live a clean and respectful life of our choosing!!?? Give me a break! This is the same county that is permitting a large scale tar sands operation just 30 miles north, one of the most earth destructive operations on the planet. This county and this town in particular are the worst kind of sellout assholes that typically inhabit this planet today. We are being forced from our homes and treated like lepers. I feel as tho a Native American might have felt in the 1880’s. After 21 years of working and living here, I feel like leaving this Park City- Aspen- Telluride conglomeration and never looking back. Daily, on the TV and in the news, the media is constantly pounding the public to live “greener” lifestyles, yet we who live this way, here in Moab, are being rejected for just! The hypocrisy in this place is so thick you could park a school bus on it. I wish I was a better writer. I wish we could some how get some national light on this. Local coverage is not enough, not enough people here care. They seem to be more concerned w/ the bottom line than the well being and integrity of their community.  I know people who have lived here for a generation or more who are moving to Grand Junction because the bureaucracy and housing costs are forcing them out.


Linus Platt, August 2010




In the event of the unexpected, unexpected events will follow. Like a chain reaction; an ability to become flexible and malleable at any turn or ripple in the fabric of what we perceive to be absolute, is what is in order. That is why I am in Fairbanks. I have landed here. After the unfortunate event of losing nearly all of my expedition funds, I felt like giving up; consorting to failure, and returning “home”. I guess by “home”, I mean where my truck is parked in Bellingham, filled with my tools to make money with, and the remainder of my material life. At the convincing of Angela and my Mother, plus a bit of financial support, I continued on. And on I will continue. After pedaling through the Brooks Range and witnessing the Arctic, I have been recharged, and my thirst for wilderness and travel greater than ever before. To simply sit in these places, where quiet reigns supreme, the main thoughts in my head are ones of wonder and fulfillment. Yes, part of me still wishes for the previous alternative of continuing on some short journey’s northward, up to Circle, Alaska and an exploration of the historic Circle-Fairbanks Trail. Or perhaps an even more remote foray into the bowels of the Pinnel Mountain Trail. I would like to experience these places eventually, but alas, it is not to be on this go…  I am in Fairbanks, working, making friends and connections, relaxing my mind, and getting ready for the next leg of this journey; the journey of my life. Angela will be here on the 26th and we will continue south towards the Denali area, into the high country that I love so much. To the land of the Dall Sheep, the Caribou, the Grizzly Bear. Places where there is only tundra and peaks, streams and lakes, animals and sky; away from the traffic and the commotion of Fairbanks; away from Fred Meyer’s, away from the public library and away from the chainsaw and the hammer. Back to the roots of my soul and beyond shadows of the mountain tops.

The weather in Fairbanks recently, has been of record heat; Alaska’s interior is notorious for it’s hot, dry spells in Summer, but in recent past, it has been downright cruel, by Alaska standards. 95 degree heat, no wind, no rain, and in the fashion of pouring salt into a sore wound, terrible forest fires have been  raging on, filling the entire Tanana Valley with a thick layer of smoke that would make even a hardened Los Angeles veteran choke. It sure put a hurt on me. Then, like magic, the clouds rolled in, and, in a rainstorm unlike I have normally seen in the north, unleashed a fury of water that seemed violently thick, yet refreshing to the earth, and the fires.  Now, the weather is cool, slightly damp, and smoke free. It is like summer took a drastic turn into another season altogether. While summer is not quite over yet, it is beginning to feel a bit like fall already. The days are getting shorter as well; last night at 1:00 am, it was a bit to much of a strain on my eyes to read “Mountain of My Fear”, so I closed the book, and my eyes, and dreamed of mountains instead.

Keep Calm and Carry on

I awoke last night around midnight and lay quietly in the forest. My deep fears festering in the darkest hours of night. Not literally, since it does not actually get dark, but metaphorically. I kept thinking to myself, “How could I be so foolish.” “Where did the envelope go”. Too many possibilities to contemplate. Like in needle in the monstrous haystack of Alaska. I do have a few bucks left, and family and friends have been extremely supportive. But another question kept itching the back of my skull. Is this a sign?  Should I call it quits? Am I in over my head? Or am I just a monumental screwup? These questions kept me awake last night. Angela confirmed to me the notion that these hours can be the worst on a temporarily troubled mind. I know it to be so.

I have decided that I will carry on, the torch of my spirit and the handlebars of my bike. Keep calm and carry on…

A Great Appreciation

In 5 short days, I will be headed north to Washington state, where, with my old friend Dennis, we will do some mountaineering in the North Cascades to the east of Bellingham. Afterwards, a visit to another old friend on San Juan Island to catch up, and then off to board a Marine Vessel to the Great White North. Good times abound..

All of these upcoming Adventures are the result of hard work and perseverance over these past many months; it’s payoff time.

However, there is another factor that needs to be recognized in the throes of the months of preparation for said adventures, and that is the one of gratitude of the generosity and helpfulness of those around me who have been ever enduringly supportive of my serious need for stomping around in the wilderness. Life is always an exchange of give and take; this is no exception. I have given my hand, my family and friends have given theirs. And for this I thank you all. Listing all the names seems pointless as all those around me have been so supportive, some more than others, and you all know who you are. Thank You all very much!

Eldorado Peak
Eldorado Peak

Trying to get Ready..

Yes, I am trying to get ready to leave for Alaska. I mean, besides working, riding bikes, tying up loose ends, handling predetermined obligations, doing maintenance on the truck, doing research, creating itineraries for both myself and for Angela, studying maps, altering and customizing gear and equipment, experimenting with gear ratios, gathering phone numbers and addresses, creating equipment lists, and last but not least, trying to get fit.

Besides these things, I am trying to get my head around this trip. It is a task easier said than done, and here’s why:  Big trips are no stranger to me; I’ve been on plenty. Here’s another one, no big deal, right?  In the past, generally speaking, I have lived, primarily, in areas where I would consider the landscape, the people, the mentality, and the environment to be somewhat easy on me; meaning that it had always been conducive to promoting health, fitness, and relaxation, all the while allowing me to pursue athletic activities that kept my mind and my body sharp for such adventures and expeditions.  I have been, recently and currently, in the city now for 19 consecutive months. That is far longer than a person like me should ever have to be in the city. I don’t do well in said places. In the past, embarking on trips such as these has been a relatively simple affair, since my mind and body were already tuned for these notions. Here and now, it is far different.  I feel like europe might have felt in 1946, ragged and weak, yet placing one foot in front of the other in an attempt to move forward with it’s goals. Bear in mind this is only an analogy, and I do not place any amount of lightness on what Europe must have endured during the decade following WWII, as I was not there and hopefully will never experience the sort of suffering those people went through. I am merely attempting to demonstrate my own state of mind after planning another “big” trip after living in the city for 19 months straight!  That’s all.

The closer I get to the departure date, the more together I feel, ironically enough. May 6th, that is now the date. I am going to drive to Mt Shasta, and hopefully, meet up with my old time friend, Dennis Belillo, for a stomp up the old peak for a bit of excersise and good times. Then off to Bellingham to see my friend Ben Hainie, and then on the ferry to Skagway on the 17th.

I loaded up the bike yesterday for a fully loaded (the bike, not me) pedal around the area.

It must have weighed in at 150 lbs. That’s with food and water. Too much? Yes, probabely so, but so it is… Only 25 more days.

Fully Loded

A Real Wish List

I have been dreaming lately, of the many places I wish to visit on this splendid Earth.  They are all rugged, remote, inhospitable, and full of wonder, beauty, and hopefully, for a while longer, before humanity has it’s way, full of non human animals as well. These places are diverse, yet at the same time, I realized, generally occur at great distances from the equator and/or at higher elevations. I do love mountains and deserts, I admit.

Here’s my “short” list

1.   Dempster and Dalton highways, Alaska/Yukon/Northwest Territorries-heading out in     3 1/2 weeks!

2.   McCarthy Road, Alaska- Later this summer

3.   Nabessna Road, Alaska- Another trip.

4.   Canol Road- Yukon/Northwest Territories

5.   Alaska’s Lost Coast- From Cordova to Glacier bay

6.   Campbell Highway-Yukon

7.   The Great Divide Route- Canada to Mexico

8.   The Transtaiga Road- Northern Quebec

9.   Iceland’s Belt Route

10.   The high deserts of Bolivia, Chile, and Argentina

11.   The Arctic Highway in Norway

12.   The Kamchatka Penninsula in Eastern Russia

13.   Siberia

14.   Mongolia

15.   Last but not least, if I can beat this cold I have and get my ass out of bed in the morning, I hope to pedal to work tomorrow!

What’s your list?