Tag Archives: adventure

A Big Effin Day

25 Mar

It’s been too long. I don’t remember the last really big effin day I had on a bike. Saturday will be that day. What makes a big effin day? For me it means the following things will be different from, say, a small effin day.

  • Suspension, It’s been a few years but I think I remember how to use it
  • GPS, don’t want to get lost
  • 260 oz. of CR, never carried that much before
  • 4800 calories, never ate that much before
  • Space blanket, just in case
  • Almost forgot, 22t cog

Check back Monday or Tuesday for details. I hope I’m able to post details. I’m so excite, high five!

Vietnam Trips 2009

8 May

An open letter to the blogosphere:

Dear Blog Reader,

This summer, my friend Paul Pinkerton is leading two service trips to Vietnam. Paul was combat veteran…who later became a rogue POW/MIA activist…and then an honored humanitarian. If you’re interested in visiting Vietnam…or participating in a service trip this summer…going to Saigon with Paul is a great opportunity. I know…because I’ve done it myself…and am glad I did!

* The first 10-day trip runs July 19-30. More info here: http://mysite.verizon.net/paulskids/ff/

* The second trip is for college-age students and runs August 16-27. More info here: http://mysite.verizon.net/paulskids/

* More fast facts about Paul below…or here: http://mysite.verizon.net/paulskids/ff/fastfaq.htm#paul

* Paul’s Kids Vietnam Children’s Charity is sponsoring the trips. You can learn more about Paul’s Kids below…or here: www.paulskids.org <http://www.paulskids.org>

Thanks…and please feel free to share this info with anyone who you think might be interested. Any questions…please give me a ring: (801) 580-6479.  Go ahead, call me.

I got a lot of emails last year from people interested in Vietnam and for a good part of 08′ if you happened to Google the phrase “elephant ear fish” (as I’m sure you did) my trip report was the number one spot.

I think about that trip a lot and what an incredible country it is.  While I have traveled to numerous countries around the world none stand out quite like Vietnam.  It has everything one would want in an exotic destination; incredible food, scenery, history, people and an unforgettable vibe.




Maybe you’ve never even thought about it or have been dreaming about it for years, either way now is the time to go.  My good friend Paul Pinkerton of Pauls’ Kids,who I traveled with last year, has put together 2 different trips this year to Vietnam.  You’ll not only get to experience the exotic destination but you will also be able to participate in life changing humanitarian work with the children of Vietnam.




I promise it will be the best trip you ever take anywhere during your short visit here to planet earth.  Just don’t drink the snake wine.  Trust me.

Thanks for reading, now go!


Circumnavigating Goosebery Mesa

31 Dec

You gotta love it when your original plan is replaced by the unexpected.

I have been telling myself for the last week that once I figured out how to use my new GPS (I now know what GPS stands for) that I was going to Gooseberry Mesa to plot important way-points on my property. For example, the property line, the road going through the property, where the yurts will be, toilets, fire pit, sweat lodge, pool, etc. So, Saturday evening I finally figured out the GPS and took off for Gooseberry. All by myself.


I’ve always thought it would be cool to camp out in the wilderness all by myself. Saturday night out in the middle of BFE I turned off the engine and the lights of the Yotavan and found it to be a little spooky, actually, way spooky. It was totally dark and eerily quiet. Did I mention I was all by myself? My ears turned into mini radar dishes trying to make out any little sound. I heard some strange gurglings and became a little spooked until I realized it was just my stomach. Somehow I made it through the night in one piece.


My plan was to work on the way-points and GPS stuff in the morning and then spend an hour or so trying to figure out how to connect the goat trail that goes off the north rim to the Jem-Goulds-Rim trail.

The next morning I tried to call Tasha to tell her I was OK and that no coyotes, psychos, chupacabras or polygamists had had me for dinner. The phone was dead. I knew she would be worried so I decided to finish up the GPS work since I was right there and then head to Apple Valley and call her by pay phone. Once in Apple Valley with my phone call done I really didn’t want to drive all the way back up to the property as it was almost 1:00 p.m.

I decided to start riding from the South Jem trail head which is only a few miles from Apple Valley and try to find my way over to the goat trail. Well, the Jem is a total blast especially counterclockwise and I just couldn’t help myself and kept on going when I should have turned off the trail.


I then started taking any road or trail heading in what I thought was the right direction. I finally ran out of tracks and took off through the sage brush half riding half pushing my bike. I was pretty sure I was going in the right direction. I eventually came to a point where I either had to back-track, jump off a cliff into the Virgin river or hike up to the top of the mesa above me. I hiked.

I then got lost and went left when I should have gone right. Luckily I somehow ended up in Rockville but realized I now had to climb the north side of Gooseberry. That climb would have been hard all by itself but after nearly 3 hours of biking and hiking it just about did me in. I was baked!



Almost 4 hours after I started I finally made it back to the Yotavan. An accidental circumnavigation of Gooseberry Mesa. 38 miles and nearly 4 hours may not quite make it to the epic category. Let’s call it mini-epic. As a matter of fact, it’s my last mini-epic ride of 2007. Happy New Year!

I Spent My Kid’s College Fund

15 Dec

And my retirement fund.

I started this blog to keep everyone up to date on my Gooseberry project. Reading that first post I realize I didn’t even mention what I was doing on Gooseberry Mesa.

I’m putting up some yurts.

2 years ago I found a 10 acre parcel for sale. I got excited about owning some dirt in Southern Utah and what better place than Gooseberry. This parcel sits right on the north rim and has views of Zion National Park, Kolob mountain and the Springdale-Rockville-Virgin corridor. As a bonus it’s 500 yards from a trail head of the Gooseberry Mesa trail network. Did I mention it’s completely surrounded by BLM land and only 1 of a couple privately owned parcels on the entire mesa? Zero chance of ever having neighbors.

I made an offer and after a couple months of negotiating things fell apart. I spent the next year and a half tracking down the owners of the other parcels, making offers and begging them to sell. The owners were not at all interested. I went back to the first seller and worked things out. I now own the only available and arguably the finest parcel of dirt on the mesa.


Takes your breath away, huh. A work of art.

Art requires patience. While they got some of the parcel flagged right away It took the surveyors 4 months to get the necessary details and numbers complete.

During this time I’ve been hassling Washington County to secure permits for the project. The biggest obstacle has been classification.

How do we classify what you want to do? That doesn’t fit within any of our current classifications for building projects.

I think we’ve got it worked out but the county planner wants me to present the project at their next meeting.

I’ve been working on a site plan myself but don’t have the skills or tools to impress. Any mountain bike obsessed architects or drafting wizzes out there that can help me with a site plan? Help. Thanks! Jon H., Rob S. and Randy.