Enjoying a Hike in the First Snow of the Season
In the morning the first snow fall of the season accumulated and the brisk winds blew. I went for a hike.
The beginning of each season is the most sought. By March, I’ll be aching for the warming sun, but today I reveled the raw winter storm. I hiked up the mountain through the thick undergrowth of the swamp entering the hemlocks. I keep climbing. The oak trees topping the mountain violently swayed in response to the strong winds. On no particular trail, I meandered up, over and around the snow-covered mountain.
Quite often when I write about deer hunting, I discuss the benefits of entering the woods alone making a personal connection with the natural world. This deer hunt was different. I made a connection with fellow hunters who also share in my passion for the outdoors and venison on the table.
Last minute travel plans changed. Instead of spending a quiet weekend camping in the woods alone, I changed course and headed north to Ohio and Powerline Park to watch the rock bouncers compete.
If you have spent any time on YouTube checking out off-roading videos, I’m pretty sure you have seen some of the crazy’s at work in their high horse power, big tire rail buggy machines bouncing up insane hill climbs and sometimes rolling back down on their lids. The action in the videos got me pumped to see it in person and when I found the next event was only a few (OK 5) hours from home I had to go and check it out.
The intentions were good. The results not so much. While on a recent bear and deer hunt in Western Maryland, I went out to glass for bear in an old clear cut and take a few photos of an old abandoned cemetery, when the trail bit the Tacoma.
Adventure comes in all shapes and sizes. On this adventure, I left the fishing rods and guns at home and the truck never left the asphalt. Interesting enough, that put me a little out of my comfort zone. But isn’t that what adventures is all about, exploring outside your norm and comfort zone? Nashville here I come.
Wharton State Forest float trip down the Batsto River
When I first started to research the New Jersey Pine Barrens and the Wharton State Forest in New Jersey, I was pleasantly intrigued by the blue lines marking creeks and the little launch site symbols on the Wharton State Forest map. My excitement grew even more when I discovered Pinelands Adventures and their shuttle service.
Categories: Camping, Canoeing and kayaking, Exploring and Wandering, Road Trips, Uncategorized
Tags: Augie's Adventures, Batsto, Camping, Exploring and Wandering, Kayaking, NEXT Canoe, Wharton State Forest
The Pine Barrens – A wilderness in New Jersey
As the Tacoma’s build finishes up, this is to be a summer of road trips. There is a post-a-note on my desk with a list of places to visit this summer. The first on the list was the Pine Barrens in New Jersey.
The Pine Barrens is a short drive from the Baltimore / Washington DC area and is perfect weekend getaway. While not all of the Pine Barrens fall within the Wharton State Forest, that is where we concentrated our trip.
From a top of the Apple Pie Hill Fire Tower, a person can see in a sweeping glance a 360 degree view of hundreds of square miles of wilderness. Not what most of us think of when we think of New Jersey. But yet there it is with miles of sandy two tracks meandering through the pines connecting long lost ghost towns, foundries, mills, and cranberry bogs.
Old Man Emu Suspension Installed on the 2013 Toyota Tacoma
At the advise of Wheeler’s Off Road I went with the 2887 front coil springs even though the charts from ARB listed the 2886 for my application. Lets just say that ARB was right and we removed the lighter rated springs for the correct ones.
The long awaited day finally arrived. When I showed up to the house late on Friday evening one big box and two leaf springs partly wrapped in packaging sat in the garage. I swear I saw the ARB bumper on my Tacoma turn up in a smile when it saw the new addition for the truck. The Old Man Emu Suspension had arrived. The truck build was one step closer to being done. Well almost, first I had to install the suspension.
A Story Worth Living
At a very pivotal point in my life I read the book “Wild At Heart” by John Eldredge. Or maybe that time in my life became pivotal because of reading “Wild at Heart.” Either way, when I arrived at the theater last evening to watch the special showing of “A Story Worth Living”, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the same John Eldregde that penned one of the most influential books in my life was also responsible for this movie.
There are no immediate plans to replace the stock rear bumper on the Tacoma. The stock one is fine for how we use the truck. However, the location of the trailer plug is just asking to be ripped off and damaged. So, I moved it. This simple modification cost $0.00 and took about 45 minutes to do. Which is a much better option than waiting until I ripped the trailer plug off when dragging the rear of the truck over a rock.