Sunday, November 11, 2012

Photogenic Husky is Photogenic


What the fuck are you looking at??


I asked you a question!!


Just leave me alone.


Don’t make me tell you again.


I’m pretending to ignore you.



Saturday, November 10, 2012

It’s Never Too Early to Stock Up for the Holidays

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Vermont 2012 Day 4



Thanks to Hurricane Sandy, I got to spend a few extra days in Vermont.  So I did a mini-one-day-walkabout.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Vermont 2012 Day 2

Music Monday: Neko Case’s This Tornado Loves You

It’s the return of Music Monday.  And since I was stranded in Vermont last week due to Hurricane Sandy, I could think of no better way to bring back Music Monday then to feature my favorite Vermont resident I’m not related to and her song This Hurricane Tornado Loves You.


On the next Music Monday….


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Well That’s Just Great. You Hear That, Ed? Bears!


Even with my new enormous lens, you can barely* tell what these creatures are roaming about at Glacier NP.  So through the miracle of Adobe Lightroom, I’ve zoomed in and enhanced the picture.


That one dude was looking right at me.


* See what I did there?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Updated Food/Booze Map

View Eating & Drinking in a larger map

I have updated my food/booze map to reflect the better places to eat during Walkabout 2012. 


2012 yellow

2011 green

2010-09 blue

2008-2007 red.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Walkabout 2012 Day 19: Rapid City to Home


    • These are the last of the pictures take for Walkabout 2012.
    • Once I get in “Going Home” mode, all I want to do is drive home.  So my being underwhelmed by Badlands NP and Wall Drug is probably a result of that.
    • Come to Wall Drug and buy some crap!
    • The original plan was to spend the night in Sioux City Iowa.  But the cheap hotel I booked was so disgusting, shady and disgusting I decided just to drive through the night and hit Dallas around 10 am – just in time for Norm’s Analysis of the Epic Ranger Collapse.

    Part I



    Part II


    Wednesday, October 10, 2012

    Adorable Marmot Picture of the Day


    I’m still recovering from another successful Walkabout.  I have a few more pictures and commentary to post.  Hopefully I can get to that this weekend.  But until then, please to enjoy these adorable marmots.

    Friday, October 5, 2012

    Two Bad Octobers in a Row

    This used to be my favorite month of the year.

    *audio stolen from BADD Radio

    Tuesday, October 2, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 18: Casper to Rapid City


    • Obviously I did make it to South Dakota.
    • It’s kind of a national travesty that the Crazy Horse Monument has made so little progress.
    • Like the Mona Lisa, Mount Rushmore is much smaller than I ever imagined.
    • The roads leading up to Mount Rushmore are lined with silly roadside attractions like The Flintstone amusement park.  Old novelty attractions from a bygone era of family road trips.
    • Deadwood was a huge disappointment.  Nearly everything on the main drag is a stupid slot-machine “casino” or had some part of Wild Bill Hickok in its name.
    • The Dakotah Steak House was a bit of disappointment.  Shouldn’t  a restaurant know not to serve the main course before the appetizer is finished? And what’s with overpowering your buffalo rib eye with some strange orange zest sauce? Only slightly made up for by having Macallen 18.





    Walkabout 2012 Day 17: Jackson Hole to Casper


    Sunday, September 30, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 16: More Yellowstone




    • I’m officially tired.  I had no energy for a long hike today.  I’m hoping the next couple of days driving through Wyoming will invigorate me.  If they don’t, I’m not sure if I’ll go to South Dakota.  I may just head home.
    • I now believe that people fly-fish because it’s fun to just stand in a river.  I mean I would love to just stand in the Yellowstone River, but I would look foolish doing so without a fishing pole in my hand.
    • Let me preface the next statement with “Yellowstone is awesome”, BUT, I would still put Yosemite way ahead of it – as well as Glacier.
    • I would admit, though, that Yellowstone has much greater landscape diversity and there are a shit-tonne more wild life viewing opportunities.
    • I’m also officially tired of buffalo.  I mean seriously people,  you’re pulling over to take a picture of a lone buffalo??  They’re all over the place.  Wait for a herd. 

    Friday, September 28, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 15: Bozeman to Yellowstone



    • I made a tactical error by scheduling being in the most popular National Park on a weekend.  This is easily the most people I’ve seen in a park this year.  I could not even imagine how nuts this place is during the summer.
    • There’s a huge amount of Japanese here.  This must be their favorite park.
    • This place is lousy with buffalos.  It’s almost too boring to photograph them.
    • Geysers are a great place to take a date.  You can fart up a storm and the horrible smell of the geysers will give you cover.
    • Easily my worst meal of the trip at Three Bear Restaurant.  Extremely old school.  The place had a soup and salad bar for Christ sake. I had the bone-in bison steak.  It was ok.  But everything else seemed to pre-made / purchased.


    Walkabout 2012 Day 14: Glacier to Bozeman


    • No pictures today.  You got more than your allotment yesterday. 
    • Besides.  I got only one comment from those fabulous pictures from yesterday. Smile with tongue out
    • Who knew you could get a great crab cake in Montana – big chunks of crab and light dusting of cumin.
    • There are more “casinos” in Montana than the rest of the world combined.  Any shithole with a slot machine calls itself a casino.

    Thursday, September 27, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 13: Many Glaciers


    • 16 miles hiked, 530 pictures taken, four bears seen and immeasurable beauty absorbed.  Pretty nice little day there, pretty nice little day.
    • I can’t lie.  I was underwhelmed yesterday by Glacier and was thinking, much like I thought I my early hours at Yosemite, that this place was failed.  Today I became whelmed.
    • After 16 miles of hiking, I’m walking around like Mr. Tudball.
    • If these pictures don’t cause an avalanche of comments, then I’m not posting any more pictures.
    • Please to enjoy the first picture of Walkabout 2012 in which I make an appearance.  So for you conspiracy theorists, I am actually out here.  Unless I’m really good at Photoshop. Open-mouthed smile
    • And with that, it’s time to head home.  But on the way, there’s still Bozeman, Yellowstone, Mt. Rushmore, Crazyhorse, the Badlands and the birthplace of The Jester to visit.

    Wednesday, September 26, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 12: Spokane to Glacier



    • Holy shit snacks!!  It’s day 12?? Really???
    • It appears anyone can open a casino in Montana.  They are everywhere and most are the size of a Denny’s.
    • It is also smoky here in Glacier.  I’ve used my considerable Adobe Lightroom skills to mitigate the smokiness in the pictures.
    • I can now add Montana to the list of states I’ve visited.
    • As with Oregon, the people in rural Montana don’t appear to be doing as well as they might.
    • Whelp.  I didn’t see any glaciers.  DAMN YOU AL GORE AND YOUR GLOBAL WARMING!!!!!


    Tuesday, September 25, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 11: Wenatchee to Spokane


    • A few weeks ago I saw a documentary about the Grand Coulee Dam.  The only reason I drove the way I did today was because of that, I had to see it. 
    • I briefly considered skipping Spokane and heading straight into Montana.  I’m glad I didn’t.
    • Spokane appears to be a city that was preserved in amber in 1953.  I’m not sure they have a single building in their downtown built since then.
    • With that, I congratulate Spokane on preserving and “repurposing” their older buildings and not shitting away their history like some cities.  (Dallas)
    • Nice meal at Milford’s – extremely friendly service.  My only complaint is that there were three different sauces on my entrée.  What’s that all about?
    • The magic number is 5.  #beltregreatestrangerever
    • On to Glacier.  This is going to be awesome!


    Monday, September 24, 2012

    Walkabout Day 10: Seattle to Wenatchee



    • Not many pictures today.  Like central Oregon, it’s very smoky in central Washington from forest fires.
    • Also, sometimes I just don’t want to stop and take pictures.  This was one of those times.
    • For those following at home, yes I had planned to stop in Coulee, but this was the closest hotel I could find.
    • But to appease JT, I have included pictures of the Bloody Mary enjoyed while not enjoying the Cowboys pathetic victory over Tampa Bay.
    • There’s a town about 20 miles west of Wenatchee called Leavenworth where their schtick is the whole town looks like a Bavarian village.  It was kinda cool and kinda weird.  I wish I had know about it.  It would have been fun to stay there instead.




    Eating Seattle: The Brooklyn


    Oysters to start, Effingham Inlets and Kusshi.



    Scallop with foie gras.





    Poached pears.

    The Brooklyn has been on my list of restaurants to try in Seattle for years.  So when Michelle recommended it I had to say yes.  Certainly one of the best meals of the year.  Everything was delicious and perfectly cooked.


    View Larger Map

    Walkabout 2012 Day 9: McMinnville to Seattle


    • Wineries visited:  White Rose, Domaine Drouhin, DePonte.  Some of the highest rated Oregon wines come from here.
    • I have now narrowed my Willamette Valley Pinot Noirs down to Dundee Hills.
    • Another perfect weather Day in Seattle.  The city council really should find some way to make me permanent fixture there so they can have year-round perfect weather.
    • There’s an area in Safeco Field where fans can watch the pitchers warm up.  You are literally standing 15 feet from the pitcher/catcher.  It wass a great way to really experience the magnitude of a Matt Harrison 95MPH fastball.
    • I drove all the way up here for a 1-0 shutout!?!??!?!?!?!
    • Thanks Meesh for showing me another terrific time in Seattle!



    Saturday, September 22, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 8: Newport to McMinnville

    • It was a totally random that I ended up in Newport.  What a great port town!
    • There’s no way I could stay sober in Oregon.  The wine and the beer are just too good.  The fresh fruit is also great.  So at least I would have that going for me.  Which is nice.
    • Don’t that I’m a Satanist, but I’m a fan of the crazy satanic names of geological oddities.  For instance, the Devil’s Backbone in the Texas Hill Country (also the name of Real Ale’s fine Belgian Style Ale and one of the best beers brewed in Texas) or the Devil’s Postpile in California.  But I had to giggle at the name of The Devil’s Punch Bowl.  If the Devil is throwing party’s how bad can Hell be??
    • Blessed are the Tillamook Cheesemakers!
    • Rosemary in mashed potatoes.  Who knew??




    OMG  the new DTE record 417!!!

    Friday, September 21, 2012

    Walkabout 2012 Day 7: Bend to Newport



    • It’s nearly impossible to show how smoky much of this trip was.  I’ve upped the contrast of many of the mountain pictures just to cut through the smoke.
    • Literally drove through a forest fire in the Deschutes Forest which I believe is named after the brewery.
    • This may well have been the most awesomest day of the Walkabout.  It started with the best meal of so far at Chow in Bend and an nice 6 mile hike up and back down a mountain to work off that breakfast.
    • Newport OR feels very much like it could be a small coastal town in Maine.
    • Also making this a great day, the two best smells in the world, ocean and pine forest.  Both of which I enjoyed today.
    • While Georgia’s Beachside Grill was a generic dining experience.  If you’re ever in Newport, swing by and say “Hi” to Deb the spunky bartendendrix who looks like the Goth chick from NCIS and sounds like Sarah Palin.  BTW  that crazy nasally Midwest accent is the dominant accent of Oregon.  You betcha.
    • Every guy in Oregon looks like he’s Skinny Pete or Badger or knows Skinny Pete or Badger
    • While the worst thing about Oregon is you can’t pump your own gas, the best thing is no sales tax.  Oh and the great beer and wine and fresh fruit.

    Thursday, September 20, 2012

    Eating Bend: Chow

    I’m not going to review many of the places I eat at during Walkabout, unless they are worth reviewing.  Chow is the first contender.  A simple breakfast and lunch place in Bend Oregon that only does everything the right way.


    Bacon Lime French Toast


    The Caesar -- Egg, Corn Cake, Avocado, Roasted Green Chili Sauce, Hollandaise Sauce, Queso


    Both of these items tasted better than they look and they’re both gorgeous.



    View Larger Map

    Walkabout 2012 Day 6: Boise to Bend




    • Wow was that a boring drive.  Nothing to take any pictures of.  Plus there’s a huge forest fire in central Oregon making everything very hazy.
    • The people of Bend don’t look very healthy.  And it’s not surprising that Oregon was Ground Zero for our nation’s Meth epidemic.  Heisenberg would make a fortune here.
    • Dinner tonight, fresh local peaches.  Yup, peaches in September.
    • Thank You Super 8 for having real glasses in my room and not making me drink my Willamette Valley Pinot Noir with a plastic cup.
    • Speaking of Super 8, this was is largely abandoned.  Thank you Travelocity Secrets.


    Whoohoo!!  My highest Distance to Empty EVAR!