Spring Has Sprung

Coming home from NYC last week I was greeted by a bloomin’ bonanza in my front yard. It was a great greeting. I’m not sure what kind of shrub it is but when the season is right it explodes. Unfortunatly it only lasts a couple of weeks and the petals soon dry up and fall to the ground below. As of right now, the the blooms are looking pretty pathetic. The heat expected over the next couple of days should do a good job of finishing them off mortal combat style. Enjoy the pics. Speaking of yard stuff, the lawn mower was stolen last weekend – how the fuck did that happen?

This is the flowering shrub in my front yard


The Cheap Decadence Of Nature

Rock Outcroppings, Mount Margaret Trail, Red Feathers Lakes

Rock Outcroppings, Mount Margaret Trail, Red Feathers Lakes

Changing Aspens, Mount Margaret Trail, Red Feathers Lakes

Stormy Clouds, Mount Margaret Trail, Red Feathers Lakes

Stormy Clouds, Mount Margaret Trail, Red Feathers Lakes

I had to take advantage of one of the last warm (really) weekends of the year and head up to the high country for some hiking and sitting around the campfire again.

But first on Friday after work I went and grabbed a bite at El Noa Noa for a big ole Super Burrito. The fair was mediocre the atmosphere was top-notch, (a trend among Mexican restaurants in Denver is that atmosphere in inversely correlated to how good the food actually is) particularly the patio. Afterward I watched Splendor, which was terrible and predictable. I fell asleep about half way.

On Saturday, after sleeping in and doing a couple of chores, I headed up to the Red Feather Lakes region to meet my brother and Pandy and do some camping (specifically at the Belleaire Lake Campground). After arriving we all walked down to Bellaire Lake to do some fishing. It sucked because the fish were jumping all over the place. You could literally see them jumping into the air grabbing flies. There were constant ripples in the lake. The guy next to us caught 7 or 8 fish. The guy next to him caught 6 or seven. The guy next to him caught several more. My brother and I didn’t catch shit. Ooops, I take that back. My brother caught a crawdad on one of his worms. After a discouraging day of fishing we all went back and cooked up some dinner and sat around the camp fire and told stories.

On Sunday after waking up, fixing breakfast and tearing down camp we all headed out to the Mt. Margaret Trail system to hike around and rock climb (boulder). The hike was really easy but had several large, unique, rocky outcroppings, which made for great scrambling and bouldering. Fortunately, we barely beat a storm out. After the hike we had a late lunch at the Ever Open Cafe in Ft Collins. After heading home, napping and washing up we met my Dad and his wife out for some dinner.
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Roughing It

Refreshing the feet, Cataract Lake, Eagles Nest Wilderness

I went up camping for the first time in a couple of years over this past weekend. Granted, I’ve been up in the mountains hiking around and skiing uncountable times. I just haven’t spent the night. So I loaded up the car with my brother, Pandy, and a bunch of her friends from school. We headed up to the Gore Range.

Elliot Creek Campground, Green Mountain Reservoir

We all had a little trouble finding a camping spot that we liked but we finally settled on a campground near Green Mountain Reservoir. It was a decent site with a few trees for shade, plenty of room for all of our tents, a fire ring, and wasn’t crowded.

Masturbate & Tackle, Green Mountain Reservoir

Bro Fishing, Cataract Lake, Eagles Nest Wilderness

Grilled Cheese & Franks Dinner, Elliot Creek Campground

When camp was a set up we headed up the road to get some worms and do some fishing. After a very unsuccessful evening of fishing, we gathered up some wood (most of wich was purchased at the bait shop back in town) and started the fire. The reminder of the night we proceeded to drink beer, eat way too many fire hot franks and spin plenty o’ yarn bullshit. Late in the night we did a little more fishing of the full moon type, again unsuccessfully.

Nightscape, Elliot Creek Campground
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Silver Lining

The NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association) here in Boulder, Colorado has issued an alert. The alert states that recently there have been large solar explosions (coronal mass ejections is what the scientists call them) on the sun. These flares are creating large x-ray bursts. The SEC (Space Environment Center) issues alerts at the M5 (5x10E-5 Watts/m2) and X1 (1x10E-4 Watts/m2) levels. As you can see here, this has happened three times in the past two days. Below is a photo of one of todays flares. Here is a great video (mpeg), constantly updated, of the sun’s activity.

There have been over 18 alerts given by the SEC during the last two days for large x-ray and radio-wave bursts. Strong solar radio bursts (those M5 and greater) may cause major disruptions in satellite and other spacecraft operations, power systems (thus knocking out electric power), high frequency communications, and navigation systems. High altitude aircraft crews and passengers on polar routs are also susceptible to radiation hazards during similar events. However, there is one cool bonus effect of coronal mass ejections… the northern lights become much more spectacular and even visible from the northern US.