Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Families on Foot - and Wheels

The new book, Families on Foot by leading long distance hiker Jennifer Pharr Davis and her husband, Brew will be released on March 1, 2017. 

The book will guide families to the trails from urban hikes to national park adventures and everywhere in between. 

Despite the name of the book, it will include information for families with special needs children and will include at least one family that hikes with wheels!

You can be pre-order Families on Foot here.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

California State Parks (Disabled Discount Pass)

Kellisa's Golden Access Passport for the National Parks got two new friends. The Golden Access Passport allows Kellisa and her family to enter any National Park Service managed site at no cost. It also entitles Kellisa and her family valuable discounts, like half off camping fees, tours, etc. Since receiving the Golden Access Passport at Grand Canyon National Park in 2006, it has been used many times.

Kellisa and Laurel both qualified for their own Disabled Discount Pass to California's State Parks. Like the Golden Access Passport, this pass is a lifetime benefit. The main perk is 50% discounts off entry and camping fees. 

According to the California State Park's website, there are 118 State Parks, 9 State Recreation Areas, 8 State Forests, 5 State Historic Sites, 9 State Fish Hatcheries, 1 State Nature Reserve, 11 State Reserves, and 11 State Wildlife Areas in California. 

The National Park Service manages an additional 28 sites in California, including 9 National Parks, 6 National Monuments, 3 National Historic Sites, 31 National Wildlife Refuges, 3 National Recreation Areas, and 1 National Seashore. California also has 19 National Forests managed by the US Forest Service.

I don't even know where to begin, but I see myself creating several checklists to start working towards in the near future. 

Monday, January 23, 2017

Monday, January 9, 2017

Atmospheric River (Northern California 2017)

Miners Ravine Trail
Stone Point to Sierra College Blvd. (RT)

Roseville, CA

January 2017

Miles - 4.98

A week ago, I had never heard of an atmospheric river. After nearly a week of non-stop rain, I now know the definition of an atmospheric river, "an extended period of strong winds, heavy rain, lower elevation flooding, and epic snow in the Sierras".

While many areas near us are suffering major effects from the atmospheric river, we are very fortunate to just be a little soaked. The little creek behind and below our house has swollen to the size of a fast flowing river. In between rainstorms, Kellisa and I squeezed in a quick hike.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Chicago Blizzard of 1999

Chicago O'Hare received 21.6 inches of snow between January 2 and January 4, 1999. 

I remember it well. I flew from O'Hare early (before the snow) on the 2nd to Orlando, FL to interview for the job that would eventually move us to Florida. It was hard to enjoy the palm trees and 80 degree sunshine because I was worried about the blizzard since I left Lisa home alone and we had known she was pregnant for about 30 hours. Thankfully, Lisa was able to stay home during the blizzard.

Even though thousands of flights in and out of Chicago were cancelled, I somehow made it home on the 4th. Not thinking ahead, I had parked my little Eclipse in an outdoor lot at O'Hare. When I got off the shuttle bus, all I could see was a massive expanse of white humps. I had a general idea of where I parked, but knew it would be a monumental task to find it. I started walking through the deep snow when I noticed that people were digging down to licence plates to identify the cars. With the wind and new snow, even once cleared plates needed to be dug out again.

It took nearly 90 minutes to find my car and another 2 hours to dig it out enough by hand to be able to leave the parking spot. Did I mention the temperature outside was -20 degrees and this was before cell phones were wide spread (I didn't have one), so Lisa was sitting at home with no way of knowing what was going on.

I eventually made it home, but had to leave my car parked in the street as I had to shovel our driveway which included a pile about 6 feet high where the plows moved the street snow to the edge of the driveway.

Before I left Florida, I had a job offer to bring home to Lisa. The offer allowed me to start the job in Chicago and move to Florida shortly after the baby was born (we didn't know Lisa was carrying twins at the time). We did not hesitate to accept the offer and I can't help but think the blizzard had some influence on our decision.

Fun Fact: Almost 11 years later, Kellisa and I would find ourselves in the middle of the historic Mid-Atlantic Blizzard of 2009.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

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