Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Casto Canyon

Cecil and I hauled our machines down to the Casto Canyon trailhead off highway 12, a few miles southeast of Panguitch. The first 5-6 miles of the ride is a narrow 50 inch trail that winds its way up through a beautiful redrock canyon; it's like riding through Bryce Canyon. Originally, we had intended to take the Limekiln loop back to the truck but that part of the ride was so mundane as compared to what we had just experienced, we turned around and went back the same way we came.

If you would like to ride this area, I would recommend picking up a free Panguitch Loop OHV Trail map. There's a lot more trails here than we were able to ride in one day.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Government Grants

Despite a nearly $17 trillion federal deficit, our government continues to spend taxpayer dollars in ways that defy common sense. Consider the following grants that were recently posted on the government website (click on links to see actual posting)...
I would like to think that at some point our elected officials and bureaucrats will come to their senses and stop this madness but more and more I am coming to the conclusion that is best expressed by the comedian Ron White when he said: "You can't fix stupid".

Friday, June 21, 2013

Notes From An Inexperienced Chili Taster Named FRANK

Recently, I was honored to be selected as a judge at a chili cook-off, mainly, because no one else wanted to do it. Also, the original person called in sick at the last moment and I happened to be standing there at the judge's table asking directions to the beer wagon. I was assured by the other two judges (Native Texans) that the chili wouldn't be all that spicy and besides, they told me I could have free beer during the tasting so I accepted. Here are the scorecard's from the event:

Chili # 1: Mike's Maniac Mobster Monster Chili 
JUDGE ONE: A little too heavy on tomato. Amusing kick.
JUDGE TWO: Nice, smooth tomato flavor. Very mild.
FRANK: Holy shit, what the hell is this stuff? You could remove dried paint from your driveway with it. Took me two beers to put the flames out. Hope that's the worst one. These Texans are crazy.

Chili # 2: Arthur's Afterburner Chili 
JUDGE ONE: Smoky, with a hint of pork. Slight Jalapeno tang.
JUDGE TWO: Exciting BBQ flavor, needs more peppers to be taken seriously.
FRANK: Keep this out of reach of children! I'm not sure what I am supposed to taste besides pain. I had to wave off two people who wanted to give me the Heimlich maneuver. They had to walkie-talkie in 3 extra beers when they saw the look on my face.

Chili # 3: Fred's Famous Burn Down the Barn Chili 
JUDGE ONE: Excellent firehouse chili! Great kick. Needs more beans.
JUDGE TWO: A beanless chili, a bit salty, good use of red peppers.
FRANK: Call the EPA, I've located a uranium spill. My nose feels like I have been snorting Drano. Everyone knows the routine by now. Barmaid pounded me on the back; now my backbone is in the front part of my chest. I'm getting shit-faced.

Chili # 4: Bubba's Black Magic 
JUDGE ONE: Black bean chili with almost no spice. Disappointing.
JUDGE TWO: Hint of lime in the black beans. Good side dish for fish or other mild foods, not much of a chili.
FRANK: I felt something scraping across my tongue, but was unable to taste it. Sally, the bar maid, was standing behind me with fresh refills; that 300 lb. bitch is starting to look HOT, just like this nuclear-waste I'm eating.

Chili # 5: Linda's Legal Lip Remover
JUDGE ONE: Meaty, strong chili. Cayenne peppers freshly ground, adding considerable kick. Very impressive.
JUDGE TWO: Chili using shredded beef; could use more tomato. Must admit the cayenne peppers make a strong statement.
FRANK: My ears are ringing and I can no longer focus my eyes. I farted and four people behind me needed paramedics. The contestant seemed offended when I told her that her chili had given me brain damage. Sally saved my tongue from bleeding by pouring beer directly on it from a pitcher. It really pisses me off that the other judges asked me to stop screaming. •••• those rednecks!

Chili # 6: Vera's Very Vegetarian Variety
JUDGE ONE: Thin yet bold vegetarian variety chili. Good balance of spice and peppers.
JUDGE TWO: The best yet. Aggressive use of peppers, onions, and garlic. Superb.
FRANK: My intestines are now a straight pipe filled with gaseous, sulfuric flames. No one seems inclined to stand behind me except that slut Sally. I need to wipe my ass with a snow cone!

Chili # 7: Susan's Screaming Sensation Chili 
JUDGE ONE: A mediocre chili with too much reliance on canned peppers.
JUDGE TWO: Ho Hum, tastes as if the chef literally threw in a can of chili peppers at the last moment. I should note that I am worried about Judge Number 3. He appears to be in a bit of distress as he is cursing uncontrollably.
FRANK: You could put a ••••••• grenade in my mouth, pull the ••••••• pin, and I wouldn't feel a damn thing. I've lost the sight in one eye, and the world sounds like it is made of rushing water. My shirt is covered with chili which slid unnoticed out of my ••••••• mouth. My pants are full of lava-like shit to match my goddamn shirt. At least during the autopsy they'll know what killed me. I've decided to stop breathing, it's too painful. •••• it, I'm not getting any oxygen anyway. If I need air, I'll just suck it in through the ••••••• 4-inch hole in my stomach.

Chili # 8: Helen's Mount Saint Chili 
JUDGE ONE: A perfect ending, this is a nice blend chili, safe for all, not too bold but spicy enough to declare its existence.
JUDGE TWO: This final entry is a good, balanced chili, neither mild nor hot. Sorry to see that most of it was lost when Judge Number 3 passed out, fell and pulled the chili pot on top of himself. Not sure if he's going to make it.
FRANK: --------------(editor's note: Judge #3 was unable to report)

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

50 Inch Trails

In my opinion, the 50 inch trails are the most scenic and the most fun of the Paiute Trail System. Today, we rode some of my favorites: 54, 53, 33, 89. One moment you are in an Aspen filled forest, the next moment it's an alpine meadow, then a burn area and so on. The variety is truly remarkable. If you do not like the scenery now, just wait five minutes.

Good, not-so-clean fun

Unique boardwalk across a marsh

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Terry & Gail Are Moving

To a cozy, one bedroom, no bath fixer-upper in the mountains southwest of Marysvale...

The amenities include a view to die for in the front of the house...

A waterfalls out back...

And given a bear was spotted about a half mile from here, I suspect they will be having fresh game and fish for dinner every night. Please call ahead for reservations.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Life On The RZR's Edge

Terry and Gail drove down today to spend a couple of days with me on the Paiute Trail System. One of the nice things about riding with this "damn-the-torpedos-full-speed-ahead" couple is that I get to do things I would not normally do...

Incredibly difficult obstacles

Treacherous water crossings

Dangerous slot canyons

Friday, June 14, 2013

In Memory of Dave Haugen

Dave Haugen, a good friend who I first met in the fall of 2011 at the Arizonian RV Park, passed away this evening. Dave and I shared some great moments over the past two winters. He was one of the nicest individuals I have ever met and he will be missed. My condolences to his wife, Karen, and their family.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Redneck Car/ATV Hauler

What do you do when you are short of space and need to haul both your car and your ATVs...

Click on photo to enlarge

Friday, June 07, 2013

Sevier Canyon Trail

Yesterday, we took trail #74 from Hoovers to #13 north to I-70. If you can get through the 50 inch gates, you would probably take #01 & #02 back to Marysvale. In as much as 3 of our 4 vehicles were wider than 50 inches, we took the Sevier Canyon Trail back to #13. It was a great ride with some long, long climbs to the top of mountains where you could see for miles and miles.

There is an actual RZR under all that dirt

New growth in burn area

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

The "RV Lifestyle"

Around 4:00 this afternoon, I go for a walk here in the park. First, I come across Chris and Beth washing their RZRs and learn that Chris and his son caught their limit of brook trout in a stream along one of the trails west of the campground. Then, I stop to ask Terri about Cecil's wife's surgery (more pain than expected but doing well). Next, Jim asks me if I would like to join him for a shot of tequila (I assume this is a rhetorical question but answer "absolutely" just in case). For the next hour we sit on the office porch and discuss matters of major importance while others stop by and join in on the conversation. It is only when my stomach tells me that it is time for dinner that I leave the group. It's times like this that I am reminded of how much fun you can have RVing.

Sunday, June 02, 2013

Paiute Trail #77

I met Mack and Joleen (who I rode with in Moab) and we joined Chris, Beth, and Caleb to see if we could get over the mountain and complete a loop of trail 77...

When we got to ~10,800 feet, we ran into impassible snow drifts and had to turn around...

However, with views like these, no one was complaining...

After spending the winter in Arizona and the spring in Moab, it is a nice change of pace to be in the mountains where there are lots of trees and green is the primary color. Also, riding along white water streams swollen with the runoff from the mountain snow is not bad way to spend the day either.