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"The Oasis of my Soul"... A Lifelong Journey on the road...

Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
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On the road
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A familiar face and a bit of Bryce Canyon, Utah

Always nice to see a familiar face specially when one cannot remember when was the last time… It seems that it was Naples, Florida, while cooking a special dinner for some Friends we have in common. On his own Journey from Canada, Louis and a couple of his riding Friends stopped by overnight… for an evening of true comedy, laughter and a local dinner.
Awaiting for another Friend from Louisiana this time we could not go too far. Bryce Canyon was the perfect place to spend a day riding and taking pictures before the daily monsoon arrived. Of course we barely got wet as usual, just a nice needed cooling off.
It truly felt more being in Europe while in the Park, it is an amazing feeling not to hear English being spoken anymore!
Enjoy the pictures and a bit of Geology…
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
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931
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On the road
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Another Friend, a new Slot Canyon and an abused Spirit! Utah…
Yes, I am enjoying entertaining and playing the guide, the cook and bottle washer… all at the same time. As myself when in a new area I like to discover my surrounding through my own senses, I don’t say much, only make a route and let Mother Nature do the rest. As we are slower than two wheels, specially in the curves, I told Brian to go ahead till he reached a meeting point. But he stayed behind for most of the time finding out that “it is nice to slow down and actually see the surroundings…”. A mental and physical break for sure only leaving some good memories.
The ride, the day and the meals including another form of stew and breakfast with great coffee was memorable for the both of us. Always a stew?… a one pan meal? There is not much around here at the local Grocery store… really not much.
Not to be mean… I love Spirit… but we were in laughter when 6 other dogs started abusing him… His reaction? A firm “enough is enough!” as the little guys flew away… literally!
That picture is on the Blog…Be well… always. Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
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On the road
He sure did!!!:eek2:

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On the road to “Cedar Breaks”, Utah…
Some feel good at home, in an “established” environment… walls… windows and doors. More and more I feel as my “home” is the road and its shoulders. We cannot forget the shoulders! They are meeting points, they are as sightseeing platforms for the multitude of personalities and vehicles going by. A shoulder is where I met Joe rollerblading across the country, also Joff on his penny-farthing around the world, bicyclists, walkers… you name it. The shoulders have been where names and e mail addresses have been exchanged, hands shaken. They are the spots where Spirit makes himself comfortable, drinks his water and does his thing! Sometimes we will even meet a reader and surprise them… sometimes another rider with a flat and even as a few days ago the Goldwing riders all set up for lunch with table and all! You add a beautiful road as the one we took passing by Lake Penguitch to Cedar break and that about sums it up… The roads are “Home”!
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
1,147
Location
Katy
Hey Ara, wasn't that Pat you met on the K1200? I know her from another couple of forums (same forums I know Donna from). It sure is a small world!
 
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Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
Location
On the road
Hey Ara, wasn't that Pat you met on the K1200? I know her from another couple of forums (same forums I know Donna from). It sure is a small world!
Nice to read you "square peg"! Hope all is well with you... Yes, that was Pat! What a bike!!!... unreal...
Will be coming back to Texas soon!!! Can't help it... You all are just too friendly...
Be well... always...
Ara & Spirit
 

Tracker

Forum Supporter
Joined
Dec 25, 2005
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11,105
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down in a holler, Catawba County, NC
I know you've probably answered this question a thousand times, but I 've searched and can't find it. Can you share what your camera setup is?
Do you do much in the way of post-shoot manipulation?

Thanks,
 
Last edited:
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
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On the road
I know you've probably answered this question a thousand times, but I 've searched and can't find it. Can you share what your camera setup is?
Do you do much in the way of post-shoot manipulation?

Thanks,
It is such a learning curve!!! They are most from a Canon 30D with a 17~85mm IS lens. Keep in mind that the 30D is a 1.6 to 1 frame conversion. Since it has to go to Canon for serious cleaning besides the sensor which I have learned to clean myself I went for broke, litteraly, and using now a Canon 5D with a 24~105mm IS "L" lens. The kit was on sale... of course because the new 5D is out due anytime! It is much sharper and 12+MG for big blow ups... maybe some day!
Post processing! Much talk about "digital manipulation"... I use GIMP 2.4, it is free as I cannot afford Photoshop... Because my Blog has a dark background I do enhance sometimes the saturation and that is really about it... I have too many pictures to spend hours on them as I spend hours taking them... trying to have a lot of patience being at the right time at the right place... Some photos are just documents, bad sky color... bad sun... but I use them anyhow without much of a choice. Then they are the good pictures... and then the once in a few thousands... WOW picture!!!
This is my favorite one while camping in Terlingua...
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and this one a sunset at Sotol Look out in Big Bend, Mexico 13 miles away and some storms moving by... Magical moments! Talking about being at the right place at the right time... I must have taken about 400 shots!!! Just could not stop...

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That was with the 30D... hope all this helps!!! Come and visit this winter... we will be 20 miles north of Terlingua!... you know, that good stuff... campfire, BBQ, lies...

Be well... Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
Location
On the road
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More of Cedar Breaks, Utah…
The longer we are on the road, the more I want to go back to older technology. Honestly. I have been on WI FI lately and today trying out my normal connection through the Dish as we will use this winter when headed south to more… Desert, well, it is slow compared. I have been spoiled… All has changed so much it seems like. I would even settle for a couple horses and a buggy if needed. But those are dreams, I think.
The cause of it might be all the sights we are seeing lately, specially Cedar Breaks… such beauty in such an unexpected place which suddenly is there with no warning as was the Grand Canyon and many other wonders.
We also went to our first Farmer’s Market the other day… not much available yet and… expensive! What are they thinking I wonder… but we bought a couple things and the ride sure was nice in this cool early morning and a sky guiding us with the sun rays.
Some colorful times!
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
Location
On the road
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More Friends visiting, Utah…
Even for those that have seen Utah, this area astonishes them with its incredibly vast spaces and raw beauty. I am even myself starting to feel isolated from the rest of the country when trying to ride roads we have yet to be on. There are just so many and when Friends visit, it is always such a big choice. Burr Trail has become a Classic in my book and every time we leave I am already thinking about coming back. I am glad that they left yesterday as suddenly the weather has changed and I learned from other travelers that the roads I took them on already had knee high water from flash floods.
Thinking about slowly heading south. The food situation here is pathetic… One store, which has truly nothing! Not even a decent potato! I wonder what the locals do? I was going to ask the owner, but then again what for!
Spirit even is into his down time. I don’t like it as he needs the exercise, as I myself do. Maybe a couple more days and all will clear up. Glad to have taken this ride, now a memory on the Blog.
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
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On the road
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Calf Creek hike, Utah
We have been camped out at the same spot for a while now. Considering there are so many destinations within a few hundred miles with the ability to travel lightly, the past few weeks have been great. But southern heat or not, untraveled roads, it is time to move on and bite into deeply the adventures and new horizons waiting for us. The feeling for so many taking roots I know is always a comfort, it only works the other way for us. How strange, moving on is comfortable. Always curious what is over the next Mountain, the end of that road facing us, the other side of the curve we cannot quite see from here.
The weather pattern has always been fine in the mornings and severely dark by afternoon. We both finally got soaked yesterday from the rain and the hail riding back from the 6 mile hike to the Lower Falls of Calf Creek. Too lazy to put on the rain pants!
Live and learn. Enjoy the hike…Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
Location
On the road
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Will this makes us Texans and Big Benders???

In a month or so from now we will be camping on “The Oasis of my Soul”… You will have to read the Blog to find out how all this has come about. It will be our winter own slice of Heaven, 25 miles north of Big Bend on some away from the road 10 acres of pristine land made of hard limestone with an all weather accessible road. It will be yours also to be shared for anyone wanting to camp or a comfy bed, good food and conversations around a campfire. It will be another facet of the Journey with much emphasize on developing some Photographic skills to try to make something out of it… amongst thousands of other great Photographers!… Hand in hand with the Blog with much more riding throughout the country the rest of the year, these thoughts and dreams becoming reality have me going with renewed energy. Hope to see you there sometime experiencing as we have done in the past and will in the near future the astonishing vast open spaces of the Big Bend area.
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
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On the road
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The intimate Devil’s Garden… Escalante/Utah
If you like to play amongst the Hoodos and the Goblins this is your playground! A nice washboard road to get there, early morning will make you the star witness of the change of colors on those free standing weathered by time rock structures. Hiking the easy loop over and over is like every time hiking it for the first time as the sun rising is constantly changing the scenes on this stage empty of visitors. We were lucky with the weather that day, a weather a bit crazy mixed with unpredictable rains and sunshine constantly switching with no warnings.
We are headed south tomorrow morning, its time and as every space we get attached to, it is with regrets and excitement all at the same time. This is one area we will return to fill in the blanks, I hope, in the meantime the thrill of seeing Zion is ahead of us and the golden key awaits for us in Big Bend.
The Hoodos and the Goblins! Some pretty cool characters
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
Location
On the road
'quote" If you're normal, the crowd will accept you. But if you're deranged, the crowd will make you their leader.

I reject your reality, and instead, substitute my own.

I carry a gun because I cant carry a cop (stolen). 'quote'


Too funny!!!...
We will be all over Texas soon!!!... and... after 40 years of cooking I HAVE to now learn how to make my own Texan BBQ!!! I know... it is serious business...
no laughing matter here...
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City Market, Luling! He only let me take pictures while he had his back turned! I thought he was going to hit me with one of those logs when I asked him!!!...:rofl: ... and yes, that was all for me... and Spirit also! I LOVE BBQ!!!
 

scar04

2
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Joined
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Messages
4,955
Location
Laredo, TX
'quote" If you're normal, the crowd will accept you. But if you're deranged, the crowd will make you their leader.

I reject your reality, and instead, substitute my own.

I carry a gun because I cant carry a cop (stolen). 'quote'


Too funny!!!...
We will be all over Texas soon!!!... and... after 40 years of cooking I HAVE to now learn how to make my own Texan BBQ!!! I know... it is serious business...
no laughing matter here...
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City Market, Luling! He only let me take pictures while he had his back turned! I thought he was going to hit me with one of those logs when I asked him!!!...:rofl: ... and yes, that was all for me... and Spirit also! I LOVE BBQ!!!
BC, you could spend years going to all the good Texas BBQ joints. Martins in Bryan has its own historical marker. Look forward to seeing you on the road somewhere.
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
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On the road
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It is 108 degrees in Zion, Utah.
As if the coin has flipped, all changed when arriving here in Zion. From a couple cars a day to mega shuttles trailering other shuttles and a lack of parking spaces within miles, from just a few hikers and intimate conversations to an exodus of tourists stomping the grounds with a thousand feet, from the crisp cool air of Escalante to an over bearing and weight heavy immobile hot air… All this has thrown me off only making me think how can I escape it all. I can’t. Just a phase we have to go through needing to eventually go to St George next week or so, visits that need to be done before diving back into the Texas deserts soon again. Eye exam, dentist, clothing and who knows what else!
I had a few photos left from Devil’s Garden that are now up on the Blog, a couple comments from readers that I wanted to post and overall just trying to keep it together and not be overwhelmed by these sudden changes!
As they say, all things must pass… this will too… They are a couple out of the way areas we will spend some time at.
Be well… Ara & Spirit

I can already taste it Sacr04!!! I might have to do a Texas BBQ ride tour!!! I am sure it has been done before...
 
Joined
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Messages
931
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On the road
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Some World Wide Traveler Friends… Zion, Utah.
Finally after months of e mails with Alain and his wife Chris, we met in Zion! That is just how it goes. Planning on the road does not work very well and is an accepted fact among us. We actually meet more Travelers we had not planned to than if we did. They are from the south of France, near by where I was born and I can still remember having his accent! I cannot describe it… it is too unique. 4 months of the road now in the USA, on their way to Mexico, South America and finally Asia. They only have two years, as we do they would like to spend more time in one place, but two years is such a short time for their route.
We parted this morning, we have a standing invitation in the South of France… I hope some day I can manage to take Spirit to Europe maybe.
We ourselves are now north of St George and will start some rides with my Friend Michael and also that “good stuff” such as eye exam and Dr’s in the big City.
Enjoy the Blog… and be well.
Ara & Spirit
 
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A loop North of St George, Utah
We keep on rolling in Utah. It just does not end! We are settled I have to admit pretty comfortably at my Friends house, Michael and Sandra, while doing some errands in St George before headed south in a couple of weeks.
We have been here before, this is like the yearly “get it all back together” stop. I thought we had seen it all last year, had ridden all the roads, but Michael has of course many more destinations up his sleeve. I think he only divulge his secret destinations in small dosage!
From “Mountain Meadows” to “Lion’s mouth” to Cedar City and back here also riding “Kolob Canyon” Rd, it was a fine ride, as good as they get.
Much thoughts about Texas, just thinking without any concrete decisions as how we are going to live down there on a land with no power, water, septic… and a real tight budget! Almost a challenge which should be in itself and interesting feat.
Enjoy the ride… we sure did.
Be well, Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
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On the road
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More Friends and a “Dammeron” loop, Utah
One more time we met up with a couple readers, from Logan this time, on their own escapade following our footsteps, or maybe vice versa!
Paul and Mariko, members of the “Expedition Portal” Forum, a Forum filled with adventure reports from all over the World and much information on how to survive the vast empty lands, some very cool vehicles also.
A ride to Pine Valley and its forest, luscious greens and creeks. It was then on to another loop west of 18 this time through Gunlock Rd and back a dirt road through some BLM land we had camped on last year passing a couple reservoirs.
There is no lack of riding around here, after all, we are still in Utah!
We are preparing ourselves for the road to Toroweap, 90 miles into some of the most isolated part of the country overlooking the Grand Canyon. Tomorrow will be doing Joshua Rd loop and another attraction near by. Eventually we will rest!
More pictures on the Blog…Be well, Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Feb 13, 2008
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4,622
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Jennings,La.
Was reading in your blog about the massacre at Mountain Meadows in Utah. While I was wandering about Arkansas a few years back I found this sign.
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The harshness of the west and the people in general is really amazing. It was a cruel and hard life back then.
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
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On the road
Thank you for sending me the picture. How sad. That was the start and here was the end. It makes me wonder so often...

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Golden Butte Rd and Whitney Pocket. Nevada.
I sure hope that you all dual sport riders from Nevada or near by have ridden the loop to the ancient town of Golden Butte and stopped as we did at Whitney Pocket, also admiring the Art work 2 miles off the main road… to the right.
Out of nowhere as usual, totally off the beaten path considering we did not see a soul all day, lays one of, now, my favorite destination. Moss, caves, multi color rocks, sandstone, portals, petroglyphs, narrow trails… It was a quick scouting day trip and we have reservations for early next year in a bit of cooler weather.
Mojave went up to 107 degrees and felt on the way back as riding through a furnace. Spirit did really good with his cover on and his soft bowl of water always in front of him. He is definitely a tough guy now! Of course he will never pass up a chance to lay in the shade!
I could not fit all the photos in one Blog, so this will be part one of two…
Be well… Always. Ara & Spirit
 
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On the road
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A bit more of Artwork, Nevada
This last day trip has obviously left an impression within me and rekindled some expressions of my mind and much thought about this Journey. Every step was a picture opportunity, so many shapes and colors within the sandstone, it was an endless array of beauty mixed with the spiritual presence of the Ancients.
Choosing the right time for such excursion is becoming more and more important. With temperatures peaking at 107 degrees such adventure would have been more enjoyable later on the year and my future planning will need to be a bit smarter!
We are getting ready for Toroweap, we are leaving tomorrow early morning and hoping to spend a couple nights within one of the most isolated area of this country overlooking the Grand Canyon. I am excited about it.
The errands continue, almost done as our southern destination awaits us. More surprises I am sure!
Enjoy the photos… there are many today.
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
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On the road


Adventures in Toroweap, Arizona
180 miles of deserted and isolated roads can turn into an adventure following a couple mechanical failures and close to two inches of rain resulting with some nice wet and sticky “calachi”. A new word I will not forget it’s spelling very soon.
But it was some fun days, some spend in the tent reading and eating. Preparedness has always been the key in my traveling and it paid off big time. We actually arrived back last night with water and food left, mainly also because of a couple four wheelers including the Ranger stopping by to make sure we were alright.
Spirit is my Hero, more than ever the bond has just heightened another step. Moving right along with never a complain, only love and affection throughout those a bit rough couple days.
Toroweap is a must to experience and hard to describe its grandeur, its breathtaking depth, a true test of heights.
Tired but satisfied, some of the Journey is on the Blog, part I that is as there is more to come!
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
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On the road


Camping on the road to Toroweap, Arizona

Sometimes a couple sticks in the spokes, such as a broken bolt, a few tire punctures at the end of a 90 mile isolated road might not be the best scenario. Technically is was not, but always ready for the worse, with 2 inches of rain turning the road into an impassable one the adventure was great while camping on the shoulder waiting for it all to pass.
Kind of wish actually I would have still been back there, peaceful and quiet setting, much food and water, even some exploring after the deluge waiting for the road to dry.
And it did as also the decision to leave came upon us for a great ride back
Would definitely do it again, it was all good.
More pictures and the story on the Blog.

Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
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On the road


Out of Toroweap’s mud, back on the road. AZ.
I cannot help wishing we were still stranded. Strange maybe but the space given to us those couple of days were such a serene space one can only travel far to find. The ride back was one of the best we had including a great sunset with of course many stops to take it all in.
Where do we go from here? Texas soon, kind of strange knowing that we are actually going to leave Utah very soon with yet so many destinations unseen. There will be I hope next year when we come back choosing our weather patterns a bit smarter.
It has been great visiting Michael and Sandra, giving me the ability to leave Spirit behind at times when needing to run errands, the annual ordeals to go through!
I think a Lifetime would not be enough to see Utah… I actually have met Rangers being here 20 years in quest of new destinations and they have yet to close in on the list.
Our exit from Toroweap with more photos is on the Blog by now…
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
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Nov 7, 2006
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931
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On the road
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A Sister and a Brother, Utah.

As a loaded spring box through a mutual Friend of now ours, my Sister Sarine and I met for the first time a couple days ago. 36 years have passed since her birth and I cannot hide the fact that those moments have been emotional. “Good emotional” as the bond, first through e mails, and now in real time, has been instantaneous, filled with great conversations and more notes comparing than one can imagine.
Truly a Life changing experience as in a few months we will stop in Los Angeles to meet the rest of the Family, many I have met earlier with the years passing by however changing us, physically as I saw from the pictures shown and I am sure mentally maturing.
A city girl Sister… a vast empty space Brother… but the connection was above it all, hard to describe the invisible bond that has taken place. I am sure some of you having a sister or a brother will understand. It has open a new door to a new path. “It’s all Good”.
You can meet her on the Blog!
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
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I will miss Utah…

Of course I say that from everywhere we leave! We will be taking our time, bypass Phoenix and Tucson, take the route through Flagstaff and Albuquerque. Painted Desert, Petrified Forest might be the sources of great riding and some Photography. Spirit and I are always ready for new adventures and Texas is still a bit hot.
We checked out the reservoirs near Enterprise yesterday, with barely a few feet of water I am wondering if we are taking Global Warming’s subject a bit too lightly. It was then on to Santa Clara, a suburb of St George to hike the easy “Tava’atsi” trail and find some Petroglyphs which we did. With the Santa Clara river on the other side of the cliffs it was a natural habitat for the Ancients and discovered that it will be soon an “unnatural” habitat for the “present and locals” within a new development only a few feet away called… “The Bellagio”. Progress right?
Some thoughts early morning, for some reason I enjoy writing in the early hours when the World around us is still asleep.
You be well… always. Ara & Spirit.
 
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Nov 7, 2006
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Las Vegas, Nevada…

First we went south west, made a u turn, then we went south east! Been thinking about it for over a year now to spend a couple night in Las Vegas and let the camera witness the neon lights and human waves.
The picture taking has been a challenge and so has been the crowds. The uneasy part was leaving Spirit behind for a few hours as I will again do tonight… with a bag and camera in hand he did not quite understand why this time he was not going.
I know I will look back at this one day and be glad that I did, this is not like any other destination we are used to, it is however good for the soul, it shows me another side of the coin I could spend my Life living within.
Tomorrow we will be in Kingman for a couple days to visit my Friends Anjie and Mark… I am planning to be busy in their kitchen! We all need some real food sometimes.
Vegas at night… on the Blog, bigger and brighter than ever.

Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
931
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On the road


One more night in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Adventuring myself a bit further this time on the Strip, truly having a good time filling up my camera’s memory card. On a Saturday night the glitter, human waves and traffic was at its peak and people watching just does not get any better.
How about meeting a buddy of Spirit?
Ludwig above has also the good Life being driven around by his own chauffeur as Spirit does… Where did I go wrong? Some day I want to be just like him!
So we are in Kingman right now visiting some great Friends and cooking a nice dinner. Tonight will be taking a “photography” lesson from a Forum member that also lives in Kingman. I have been trying to learn how to shoot in RAW, he replied to my thread, he happens to live here… we cannot pass up the opportunity. What luck!
More of Vegas on the Blog.

Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
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Kingman, AZ.

Great few days in Kingman, really relaxing and not doing much besides cooking a nice dinner for Mark, Anjie and Family. Also learning how to shoot in RAW format with the help of a reader, rider, photographer that happened to answer my question on some color problems and lives in Kingman himself. Small world! It just does not get any better.
We are near Tucson now, there is a bit of “I miss Utah…” in my mind mixed with the “looking forward” to this piece of land in Texas near Big Bend and hopefully getting a bit of work cooking to help the thinning wallet from these two years on the road.
Riding Texas… cooking… building a structure… some small trips planned with cooperating weather… it is going to be a busy winter. I like busy!
More on the Blog…Be well, Ara & Spirit
 

db

Joined
Aug 8, 2003
Messages
592
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Houston
Excellent 'pics and prose' as always, Ara. It's good to see you are working your way back down to Texas! ;=):sun:
 
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Nov 7, 2006
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On the road
We should be there in a couple days... it is that time!
Come and visit...

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A loop through Wilcox, AZ.

The last leg of it before arriving to Texas, near Big Bend, where we will set up shelter, work on getting some water and who knows what else…
Familiar route it was through the Chiricahua Mountains, stopping at the “Southwestern Research Center” where I use to work for a short time, then on to Portal, through Douglas, Bisbee, Tombstone, Benson and finally closing the loop back in Wilcox.
I felt a bit as doing 16 countries in 12 days, one of those days, however a much needed ride to clear up the mind and tire the body a bit.
Spirit had never been there, always confident on my choices I was wondering if the smells of years back made any kind of impression on him!
Tomorrow is Sunday and I figured a good day to go through El Paso, normally with much traffic it should be then quiet.

More on the Blog…

Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
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On the road
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Almost there, Texas that is!

Today is the first day of fall, summer is already behind us and time’s traction in my Life seemingly is spinning its wheels faster and faster. It has been quite a summer and so fortunate to have the so many photos I can go back to and reminisce of the days past or close my eyes and travel in time reliving the past senses that have filled me over and over. And now, just a few miles from Texas, this friendly State that has always been so good to us, there is excitement within me as we will walk on this land of ours a bit later for the first time. Its symbol, its presence, its space already felt has filled this morning with some unprecedented excitement, a new “feel good”…
The last ride taken through Tombstone and Bisbee was of a colorful one, but it brought back some shaded memories of recent years past, memories maybe I did not need to relive again. But it is all behind now, the skies are blue, the road is well paved ahead, it is a special day for the both of us…
More on the Blog…Be well, always. Ara & Spirit
 
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Nov 7, 2006
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On the road
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Our “Oasis” in Texas…
There is too much going to even start describing the days! Surprises… such as Spirit as never seen before off leash as my shadow and the keeper of the land! Playful and spirited, he loves it and expresses it accordingly. The roads leading to our camp, as I will always call it, are definitely all weather accessible and the land itself is a beauty. Isolated with views as comparable as being in the Park which is only 25 miles or so away. Today we build a road… our own road through the land making sure not to damage any of the beautiful cactuses and other vegetation. A real road! Looks like the entrance of a multi million dollar estate… and it is! 10 acres to me seems huge, specially when the nearest neighbor is two miles away. Much to explore with Terlingua Creek not too far behind… So great times coming up Monday when we move “on”.
More on the Blog…Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
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“Spirited Road”, Texas…
Yes, that is now the name of our road we established a couple days ago on “The Oasis”. A couple more days in Alpine to round up what is on the list and move on Monday. That is the plan. It is like I am torturing myself by not moving on today, I can taste us being there… it has to be the right day!
We took a ride to Terlingua yesterday, the Mustang Shelby’s where having their yearly meet with many powerful and expensive cars playing drag racing and reverse parking “tail in” at high speeds. Many toys displayed where I also had a chance to meet Mr Carroll Shelby himself and have him autograph my riding jacket… it’s value from faded fabric and well weathered fibers just went up!
The weather has been perfect, a slight chill is in the air in the dark hours, for a change our timing getting here has been just right. I am sure we will start seeing many travelers coming through unless this far destination and fuel prices hold them back.
More on the Blog…Be well, Ara & Spirit
 
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All is quiet at “The Oasis”
The neighbors 2 miles away must not be home as I look around it is pitch black whichever way I turn. This is reminding me of my days on sailboats anchored a hundred miles off shore, in that previous scenario however without much of a safety net.
This definitely does not feel as just any land we have camped on! It is as I am expected to do something and then again we are here with Mother Nature to smell the roses… cactuses actually. Tomorrow morning already the “telephone” guys are coming! Just when I thought we have escaped it all… That is however good news, phone is a must in any shape or form and with it will come Broadband… less expensive than the Dish I use right now.
An oil change for “Old Faithful” and we will be ready to roll, anxious to get into Big Bend Park again… sit at “Sotol Look Out”, my favorite spot of it all… specially when a storm passes by and the sun is setting, as it did last year on a magical evening.
More on the Blog…Be well… come and visit!
Ara & Spirit
 
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Our First Day in “Big Bend”, Texas

First day here, first day there, all is a first including a beautiful sunset and a sunrise, the ride… it is all first row seat here.
The nights are filled with more stars than I have ever seen and 24/7 there is silence, that is total silence. One can get used to this and too much of it will make it hard when the coin is flipped as it will be when we start some short adventures.
Without a watch or clock the days flies by and only the sun lets me know to get a move on if I want to accomplish anything of any value.
Getting into the Park has not changed, it is that content feeling while riding the familiar roads and stopping at the familiar look outs. It never fails to see a hill, a rock or colors I had never noticed before, an amazing fact for as many times as we have been here.
The rest of the day is on the Blog…

Be well and thanks for the company…
Ara & Spirit
 
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Took a little walk, Texas

Not stranded but needing to get some tire situation straighten out. The “wheel” has arrived and the tire needs to be seated properly, “Old Faithful” needs a new front mounted and things do not move too fast around here. We just rode 120 miles today and the tire guy stood me up… So we will try Monday again, plan B. closer this time.
We have been going on many walks lately. Getting over this sense of responsibility being here and somehow for some reason feeling different than just setting up camp anywhere.
1400 miles of dirt roads to walk on, ride, and right behind us is a little hill filled with flowers and the daily Sunset always better than the day before!
Spirit does not stop attracting the photographers as it happened again while in Alpine. Better him than me!
I just feel so unorganized suddenly as there is much to do and seemingly at the same time nothing to accomplish! We just need our wheels to get rolling again.
More on the Blog… till next time.
Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
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Are the Stars “misaligned”?, Texas

I have to this morning take a step back and move slowly on the path of “fixing” things, or more truthfully think about on how to go about it all! Suddenly it is a full plate…
After numerous attempts my new wheel is still leaking air. I won’t even go into the details, it could be the subject for a humorous play with too many scenes. “Old Faithful” herself is diagnosed with a bad right throttle body and a slipping clutch. I am not even thinking about her annual physical such as what everyone calls a “tune up”, an involved process that requires the sidecar to be taken apart. Without a phone here, e mail is my only resource and, not surprisingly, the BMW Dealers I inquired about are not returning any breath of my inquiries. I guess they do not want to sell any parts!!!
A few miles away my cell phone will work but its battery for the second time is not charging! I often wonder if “mechanical” objects have a Life of their own. Must be…
More on the Blog…

Be well, Ara & Spirit
 
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There is supposedly a BMW Guru in Austin I think the name is Rhine west , I'm not sure . I dont know any thing about him since I ride the other EU brand . I was going to suggest you start a thread in bike help but I see you beat me to it . SEYA in December
 
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Thank you guys! How about Paul Glaves... 4 miles away... It just does not get any better + I will learn how to do it myseld (hummmm...) next time!
See you soon... Mr Cagiva!!!:rider:

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Karma looks upon us, Texas

What would be the chances for an incredible mechanic such as “Paul Glaves” to be our neighbor 4 miles away and offer his expertise to install a new clutch, throttle body, throttle cable and a complete maintenance schedule as “Old Faithful” is in need right now? Slim?… well, it is reality! The parts have been ordered, next week we will be not only watching but as he expressed himself learn more about this bike than I ever have.
There is no denying it, once again the road has become smooth as also there is not harm for us riding around in the meantime.
A ride to Terlingua, the Ghost Town, seeing the familiar sites and faces as not much has changed since last year.
The weather has been perfect with tolerable heat throughout the days and cool nights. This at time “puzzle” is emerging as an image with much more definite outlines.
A recipe for a quick meal, a tasty one…
As always, more on the Blog.

Be well… Ara & Spirit
 
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I was thinking he would be you first choice , when you posted looking for somebody I thought they were out of town or he couldn't get to it for some reason . Watch carefully so you can do it next time . SEYA
 
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It will interesting and relaxed! see you soon...

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Unprepared for the storm, Texas

The future? I will be prepared! Good weather day in and day out makes me forget the other side of the coin sometimes. It only took “that one” burst of wind to knock the Dish down. Already with no phone service here yet, we both went on to Alpine to find a solution. And what luck… a slightly bent Dish was waiting for us… all is well again!
Much play with Spirit every day on this vast open land, one happy dog he now is and has become my shadow 24/7, his sight never leaving my movements.
Thinking about next week, about “Old Faithful” being dismantled as it is always a mental hardship, but for the first time I am truly so relaxed about it, how can I not be when it is Paul Glaves running the show. The parts are here… we are ready.
We took a ride into Big Bend Park, always feeling this peaceful aura descending upon us, an easy pill to swallow. More great Sunrises and Sunsets… I try real hard to not take anymore pictures of them… but that is not happening!
More on the Blog…
Be well… always. Ara & Spirit
 
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On our way to Ft Stockton! Texas

In company of a good Friend yesterday, Lance’s Birthday passed on with more ease this year as I only hope that I some day return the incredible support that I received on this bitter sweet day. I feel so much to want to reach others wearing the same shoes, “I owe” I feel… “what can I now do” I feel…
Plagued by mechanical let downs it is now the turn for the solar power to malfunction! No “DC” power when inverter or generator off! Luckily another Friend will meet us today in Ft Stockton to figure out what is wrong. What happened to the simplicity of living in a tent? This is so complicated and so much can go wrong…
Tomorrow “Old Faithful” will come apart, she will be in good hands hoping for no bad surprises… thinking positive here.
Just another day on the road as the full moon is upon us… on the Blog.
Be well…. Ara & Spirit
 
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