Sunday, August 24, 2008

Relay For Life Event

I will be walking in the Relay For Life event on September 20th and 21st at Highland High School to celebrate survivors, remember the people we've lost to cancer, and fight back against this disease.

Please help by making a donation for this event.

Click here to visit my personal page.

Click here to view the team page for Arcata Associates

Remembering: (this list will probably grow)
Alice Schlicker (2006)
Tommy Jones (2008)
Rebecca Hooper (survivor)
Sally Hudson (fighting)

Event Date
September 20 & 21, 2008

Event Location
Highland High School
39055 25th St. West
Palmdale, Ca 93551

Friday, August 22, 2008

Photos in the fair

Found all ten of my photos at the fair. Only one got an honorable mention.

So off to shoot more photos for next time.

I will try to post samples of the ten photos that I entered when I get a chance.

Click here to see all ten entries.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The AV Fair Photo Exhibit (update)

I will have ten photos exhibited in the AV Fair this year. I entered all the mounted photos on the 13th of August. The photos will be exhibited at the fair from August 22nd through September 1st. We'll see how mine stack up to others that were entered.

Only had one category mess up, but was able to get it fixed. Had to deal with "the grumpy old guy" volunteer to get it changed, but I was able to get it into the right category. I think this was the same guy that Shad had for his GATE Photography class. If so, it was no wonder it was such a fiasco and the kids really didn't seem to enjoy it. But we'll just have to work on that this year.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Out for a drive.

I went out for a drive on Saturday evening. Ended up out by the Poppy fields to watch the sun set and the moon rise. Then decided to take Ave I around to Ave D over to Gorman and back down the 5 Freeway to Santa Clarita.

The sun setting just east of the Poppy fields.

After the sunset, I turned east and shot the moon rising.

An overpass overlooking the 5 Freeway just south of Santa Clarita, almost back to the 14 interchange. Timed exposures from 15 to 30 second intervals.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Improvised swimming pool

Jordyn and Tanner decided to make there own pool in the back yard. Complete with boat. (Sorry the video is sideways. Shot from my phone.)These two are always very creative about descovering new ways to use what we have.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

First Day of School - update

All three of the kids seemed really excited about there classes after the first day. Sounds like they are in for a challenging year, but are excited about all the new stuff they will be learning. And they all seem to really like there new teachers.

I am not real sure what Jordyn's class has planned for G.A.T.E. activities yet, but Shad said he will be doing the photography part again. So I will be taking him out to shoot stuff on the weekends if we can and then I want to have him blog it if he will (but we will see if that works or not). Depends on other homework loads I guess.

Monday, August 11, 2008

First Day of School Aug 11 2008

The kids started back to school again today.

Shad starts the 6th grade this year. Jordyn starts the 4th grade. And Tanner starts 2nd. All three seemed excited about starting again. Both Shad and Jordyn will be in the G.A.T.E. program this year. It sounded like Shads teacher was going to be doing some photography in there program again. So time to go out and shoot some more photos Shad...

Tanner was the social butterfly or at least trying to be. Anytime he saw someone getting a hug, he would run over to get some to.

Jordyn was asking me if I knew her cell phone number and telling me never to call it while she is in school.

Shad was "playing it cool".

I just can't believe how big they are getting now. They grow up so damn fast. But it is fun, they can now do more of the fun things and actually have some interest in them.

Monday, August 4, 2008

4x4 Trip through Last Chance Canyon

Decided to take a day trip with Terry and his friend Stuart up to Last Chance Canyon and see how it looks this year. (More photos and video to come as time permits, but we all know how that goes.)

We got out of Lancaster around 10 am. Jordyn decided she really didn't want to go. Said she gets to scared when the truck rocks. So I decided to be nice and let her goto a friends house and picked up Dalton and took him instead. So it turned into a boys day out in the dirt. It was Terry, Trevor, Zack, Stuart, Shad, Tanner, Dalton and myself. Starting temp around 95 degrees.

Shad decided to ride with Stuart in "the big Jeep". Stuart has a really cool decked out 05 Rubecon. This thing couldprobably climb a vertical wall.

Starting into The Last Chance Canyon wash, temp was 103. The start of the wash was really sandy. Seemed longer than it has in the past. It has really changed since the last time I was up there about three years ago. Lots of new washouts, and new rocks to navigate.

The Jeeps did really well with the rocks. Stuart just went right over most of them, but he has the clearance without a problem. Terry had to pick through a little more closely, but still no real issues. I had to really navigate some of the rather rockey areas, was afraid of some of the clearence. But did really well, except for one spot. Hopefully I will get some photos from Terry, but there was one section that had some rather tall rocks that I had to weave between. Trevor was shooting photos and spotting as we navigated through these areas. He looked away at one point and I thought I had cleared the rock to the right side, when all of a sudden "WHAM"! Very loud metal on rock slamming noise and abrupt stop. Caught me just under the front bumper on the right side. Tow hook and skid plate. After verifying no real damage, I was able to turn just slightly and crawl out from between the rocks.

About a mile later, we stopped at one of the open flat spots to take a break. When leaving this spot, my truck would not start. Turn the ignition and... nothing... There is nothing more frustrating than being in the middle of no where and having vehicle problems. And it was not a place that I could get towed out of. Luckily I was able to roll backwards and get it out of four wheel low. Then throw it in reverse and pop the clutch. Vaaroom. Gotta love the Toyota and stick shift. Needless to say, the rest of the day, if I did turn the engine off I made sure I was on a hill so I could roll start (which I had to do). Thoughts of something messed up by the rock impact kept going through my head. And now I had the extra preasure of not stalling the engine while attempting the last really hard climb.

So we reached the main dificult hill climb. Stuart went first and walked right up all the rock shelfs and sand with no problems. Terry was up next. He had to navigate it a little more than Stuart did, but no real issues. Now it was my turn. By this time, there was quite an audiance that had formed at the top. There were some people set up over the top. So after studying the route I wanted to take and seeing what spots Terry had a little slipage with, I had my route picked out. Had to shoot all the way to the right, then hard left to miss most the first shelf, then cut hard right again to navigate the second shelf. Then push hard to the top. The first try, I went a little to far right at the bottom and spun in the soft powdery sand. So had to let off for fear of stalling it. But on the second try, I got the lines just right. Had one spot at the second right push where I started up the second self a little more than I wanted to and almost let off, but turned hard right and slid back into good traction. (See video that Shad shot below.)

After that, it was a cruise. We went up SR-15 and explored some of the cabins that are out there. 111 degrees at the first one.

We then went down to what we think is called the "detergant mine". That is where I got the shots of Terry and Stuart climing up over a pretty narly rock shelf. I decided not to press my luck on this one. Was afraid of clearance issues and after the fear of stalls....

But over all, it was a good day of 4x4ing. Very hot as that area usually is though. And the problem with my truck turned out to be the battery. Couldn't crank enough amps to turn the engine over. But when you consider that it was still the original battery from when I bought the truck brand new with only 6 miles on it and now I have over 95k on it. It was bound to go. Live and learn.

I look forward to the next trip I can go on. Probably after new tires again though.

My climb up the hill at the top of Last Chance Canyon. Shad didn't film Terry or Stuart climbing this one.

Stuart climbs the hill at the soap mine. The first one is fully locked. The second on is no lock. Actually seemed to climb easier not locked.

Terry climbs the hill at the soap mine. Scrapes a little bit at the end but no problem going up. I will have to try it once I get better tires. Didn't want to push my luck this time though.