From: Marty Leipzig
To: Steve Quarrella
Date: May 1 1998 8:00:05 am
Subject: Blue Genes.
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>  ML>     Oh, no! For the full visual and thermal effect, it
>  ML> has to be July. At noon. On a cloudless day.

> I travel in comfort.  That's not so much referring to the
> weather, but more so to the hordes of people who get in my
> hair when I'm trying to enjoy myself.  Was great to go to
> Arches National Park one November and see maybe three
> people as we made the rounds (rather than 300 during the
> summer).

That's one of the nice by-products of being a professional planet raper.
I get the lowdown on obscure, out of the way places and can actually find
them. Also, many times, I can get into restricted areas of Nat. Parks, ostensibly
to "do research'. Fie on crowds.

Of the former, after Alicia trashed most of Galveston and the Boliver peninsula,
I wanted to go down to the Blue Coast Highway and get some pictures. I was
stopped (as was everyone else) by the National Guard. "Sorry. We can't let
unauthorized people in there..." said the bank-teller turned guard.

Whereupon I flashed my AAPG membership card (nicely laminated) and told
him "Geologist, on photo documentation recon op.", in a stern, steady voice.

He saw the card, it's nicely laminated cover and official looking emblem.
"Uh, sure. OK, sir. Pass."

"The force has strong effect"... and all that.

>>> Where were the tubes, do you recall?
>  ML>    They're virtually everywhere, but it's the deepe one
>  ML> with the ice in them. As I recall, we parked in front of
>  ML> the office there and struck out due west about 3/4 to 1
>  ML> klick. There they were. Next time, ask around. They're

> Definitely.  One down side to getting there in the off-
> season:  The park was open, but the visitor center was
> closed.

Here's a tip. There's a great, somewhat largish folio sized book called
"The Geology of the National Parks" (and damned if I can recall the author
or ISBN; but I'll look it up if your interested). It's not terribly technical
(I used it for my 1 credit module course I taught a few years back at Cougar
High; aka Univ. of Houston, in a "Rocks for Jocks" sort of mileau), and
it's jam- packed with all sorts of interesting tidbits about all national
parks. It's cheap, too. Something like $20 or so, and wonderful pictures.
If your a park goer, it's a keeper.

>>> rock beaches can be tough to traverse.  There is a
>>> sign near the northern terminus of the trail advising
>>> that the first so many miles of the trail are the most
>>> rugged AND the most dangerous of the whole 700km
>>> trail, and that one should treat that section with
>>> respect.  In fact, the guide book used to say "People
>>> have DIED here."
>  ML>     Now there's a good advertising gimmick.

> Seems like they actually give a shit about you in Ontario
> (at least as far as the parks are concerned), and would
> rather see you not killed instead of spending money to get
> to a place where you cannot physically hike.

They should do like that do in Idaho (at least, they did years back). The
Mineral Region is chocked full of mines dating back to the early 1800's.
Needless to say, most are paid-out and abandoned. But, they leave lots of
goodies of the mining trade behind. As it's near the Idaho Primitive Area,
many unsuspecting types wander in and fall in mine shafts, get one to collapse
on them or find very old, very unstable dynamite. They ran commercial ads
on TV: they'd show a map and the voice over would detail where this area
was. The scene changed to cave-in, explosions and other forms of mayhem.
A skull and crossbones appeared over the area and the final warning was:
"If you don't know what you are doing or where you are going, at least prepare
before you leave"...and they would roll the names, addresses, and phone
numbers of all the mortuaries in the area.

Casualties dropped from 15 the previous season to just 2 the next. Might
be 'post hoc, ergo propter hoc', but those ads did have one hell of a visual
impact (although that never stopped us...)

>>> and that a small trowel would be lighter, and when
>>> nature calls, he only needed to dig a small hole
>>> anyways.
>  ML>     Now, Steve. Maybe this guy just had a double
>  ML> MetaMucil and was thinking ahead...

> We caught up with a couple of guys who had stupidly drank
> untreated water, and they were loaded with giardia.  They
> didn't HAVE time to pull out the trowels when nature
> called. It was just "Run off into the bushes and hope you
> can get your pants down in time."

Tell me about it. I got a dose of beaver fever once. I'd rather chew glass
with a razor blade chaser than have that again.
It's totally unwarned. Walking along fine one minute, and the next,
all sort of visceral hell breaks loose.

>  ML>     I don't have pair one of jeans for serious field

> I don't even own a pair of jeans any more.  Other than at
> work, I don't wear long pants, but of course, I have to
> make exceptions when I'm at play in the caves or in bug-
> infested areas and so forth (Man, are black flies MURDER in
> Southern Ontario in the summer).

Two items necessary for working in Siberian in the summer: mosquito netting
and duct tape. Amazing where those little gnasty gnats can get to...

>  ML>     If worse came to worse, I carried a space blanket and

> Is that the "tin foil" blanket?  I still have mine.  My
> fellow Scouts called it a "disco blanket," and I used to
> drive them crazy with the crinkle-crinkle sound.

Yep. Crinkly-wrinkly and noisy. Not the thing for making a photo blind.

>  ML> climatically unawares. Odd how a rip-snortin'
>  ML> thunderstorm can sneak up on a person...

> When we were on our big hike, we got caught by the God of
> the Old Testament a few times.  We were usually along
> Georgian Bay, too, so we'd get those really nice winds to
> spray everything in our faces.

I got ambushed by the Finger of God whilst canoeing in the Boundary Waters.
Do you ken how hard it is so paddle a flooded canoe?

... Yeah. And if my grandmother had wheels, she'd be a wagon.

--- GEcho 1.00
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