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Thursday, November 19, 2015

16 JAN 16 Update...and 26.2?

Continuing to train for my 16 January 16 ascent of Giant's Despair.
Rumor has it, yet to be confirmed, that a local acoustic guitar artist may be joining us at Breaker Brewing Company for the gathering afterward.
Doing steps every morning before 5 am with a 40 lb. vest gets the blood pumping PDQ. Caffeine sends it into overdrive.
For those that wonder what Goal #4 is...here we go:
A 26.2+ mile walk from the site of Fort Wyoming to the Rte. 6 crossroads in Tunkhannock in ~June 2016.
Stay tuned.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Time on the Susquehanna: 2005

Beginning in 1997, and continuing for over a decade, a group of my friends and former co-workers would get together in late September or October for a long weekend paddling & fishing on the north branch of the Susquehanna River. Eventually, for a trip or two, our sons began to join us.
Here are some pics from our October 2005 weekend.





Above: The "Pondaroski" in "Lazeyville" was washed away by flooding many years ago.


Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Friday, November 13, 2015

An Autumn Road Trip & Mountain Man Soup

This past weekend, I decided to take a road trip north to see my Mom and visit some friends along the Susquehanna River in NEPA. My many stops for photos included Bowman Creek, Tunkhannock, Laceyville, Wysox, Barclay Cemetery and Sugar Run.
What a great way to spend a cool & sunny late autumn day!
Thanks to Dan & Karen Natt for the Barclay Mt. road trip and sumptuous repast.


Umm...666? Really?

Below: The Susquehanna River @ Wysox and Bradford Bear

Sunroom of one terrific Mountain Man and a legendary natural turkey caller.




Below: An immature bald eagle @ Sugar Run

And, my friends, no cool, crisp autumn day would be complete without a bowl ( or two ) of "Mountain Man" soup. As I'm not 100% convinced what type of critters went into this incredible dish, I'll just say I'm pretty sure there was some venison in it. ;o>
Can't wait for my next trip to the wilds of NEPA.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

16 JAN 2016: Return to the Broken Road (UPDATE)


I've already started to get inquiries and one confirmed "walker" at this point, so here are the details:

The starting point will be a few hundred feet past the intersection of East Northampton Street and Shannon Street @ 11 am.  There is a parking lot on the right...can't miss it.

Here are the GPS coordinates:

Latitude: 41.223152
Longitude: -75.865147
Accuracy: 16.40ft

Street: 929–943 E Northampton St
Postal: 18702
City: Laurel Run
State: PA
Country: United States
The length of the walk to the top of Giant's Despair is almost exactly one mile.
Afterwards, we will congregate at Breaker Brewing Company. Pitchers & snacks will be on me with the one following caveat; you've completed the walk to the top with me. 
Updates as time marches on...
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Original post:

For this post, just a slight change in topics, folks.
In just over two months, I will "celebrate" the third anniversary of my fall.

For those who haven't been stopping by regularly, on 13 Jan 2013, I fell while carrying a heavy box down a set of concrete steps and completely ruptured both quadricep tendons.  Within seconds of trying to get up, I realized something was terribly wrong. I was able to drag/crawl back onto the steps, call my wife, call 911, and - believe it or not - send an email to my supervisor telling him I might not be in on Monday.
Here's a screenshot of the original email (click to expand):

Two comments about the message above: 1). I was already going into shock and 2). even in that state of mind, I was able to accurately diagnose my injuries while all the incompetent "medical professionals" at Wilkes-Barre General Hospital's ER could not. But that's another story for another day.
Since I'm really not in the proper frame of mind this morning for a lot of writing, I'll let pictures take over from here with a few comments along the way.
For over 4 hours, while laying on a stretcher in an open hallway, I politely asked for pain meds. I was at 10 out of 10 on whatever scale they use. The Dr. wasn't in. Finally got some relief at ~3 a.m.

The morning after surgery. The pain was insane.

A few days later. Pain level @ 4?   Really?
BTW - the rehab nurses were great. Absolutely wonderful. So was the surgeon.
Those ER folks? Stay tuned.

The long ride home down the PA Turnpike.

My first peek - UGH! The swelling lasted for weeks.

My message of Support to PSU's Atlas THONers!
"For The Kids"

I did NOT pick that color, folks.

A message to my co-workers in LONDON.
Day by day, step by step, I began my physical and mental recovery, seeking inspiration wherever I could find it. I had a nurse and P/T stopping by the house several times a week.

Above: Artwork ( etched glass ) by my friend David Krafcik @ Visual Dialogue
As I got stronger and more mobile, I began setting personal goals for myself, and ended up with five for the short, intermediate and long term.
The first was marching the full length ( ~2 miles ) of the 2013 Memorial Day parade in Kingston, PA and speaking at the Memorial Service @ the Forty-Fort Cemetery. I was advised by many not to do the entire walk. Of course, I didn't listen. Mission accomplished.
The second was to paddle @ RiverFest 2013 on the Susquehanna in June. Again, people questioned the wisdom of this choice. Mission accomplished.

And then, my friends, I got sidetracked; i.e. life and work took me away from my game plan and caused me to lose sight of my goals.
Recent events have grounded and then reconnected me with what's important in life, and I've decided to redirect my focus on achieving all goals established while stuck at home for six months in early 2013.
Goal #3: Walking Giant's Despair with a 40 lb. vest. 
The date: Saturday, January 16, 2016...rain, shine or snow.
Black ice? We'll see.
Time: 11:00 am. Save this post and I'll provide the exact starting point in an update.
The prize: Personal accomplishment, and free beer to those who join me and make it to the top.
For my fellow NEPA FB & Blogging pals who are at my stage of, umm, advanced youth...start training now. This will not be a walk in the park, but for those making NY resolutions to get back it shape, it'll be a great workout.
See you there.