3sailing the NorSea


WEEK 44 2015

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Saturday 31 October 2015
Saturday - Back in Lancaster, very tired.

I fooled around, trying to get ready for the hike next week - we leave in the early am hours on Monday, but was kind of dragging all day.  I  found the little urea pellet stove Dave gave me, and both of my packs - the external frame Kelty that I took last time, and the smaller internal frame that is probably a good pound and a half lighter.

I have a couple of Mountain House dinners, but still need two breakfasts and three lunches, and some on-the-trail food. Sheryl says she has trail mix, string cheese, Clif bars and I have raisins, so morning oatmeal and coffee is what's lacking now. I'll probably mix up some packets of instant coffee and creamer, and check the pantry for instant oatmeal.

The tent is an open question. I have the little emergency tent, and even the little one-man tent that I bought early for "practice hikes" in the local mountains (hah). The emergency tent is 1 lb, the personal tent just under 3 lbs. I have a lightweight sleeping bag and Dave has a rollup air mattress he said he'd loan me.

The weather report has been all over the map. Right now it looks like 25% chance of showers while we're in the Canyon, but who knows? That's the NWS report: the Weather Channel and Weather Underground database is confused and reports the weather for Atlanta, Ga. as the weather for Phantom Ranch, Az.

On the rim it's going to be cold. But in the 60's down below.

I need to waterproof my boots - and Dave noticed I had a busted seam on one. I'll have to see if I can close it with fishing twine, then neat's foot everything as best I can.

It is Halloween and I went over to my friend Roger's for it, as usual. And, as usual, he spent vast amounts of time and energy creating a truly spectacular display. There were ghouls and skeletons and spiders and dismembered hands and coffins and....

It's unfortunate that it doesn't really photograph well. At least, not with my photographers skills. But it's good enough that people - even the adults - are pretty impressed.

Friday 30 October 2015
Friday - OTR.

The pipe is in, the contractor putting in asphalt at one end while he finishes up compaction at the other. I left it to him - it's part time inspection after all, and he knows how to do this stuff and the county inspector will call him on anything he does wrong on base and a/c work.

Back to Lancaster, where I just fell asleep on the couch until late evening.

Last week I passed a pretty recent broadside on the Hwy-126 (minutes). This week, as I was driving back on the Hwy-126 all of a sudden the guy ahead of me slammed on his brakes. His hood had opened, at speed, and he couldn't see. I was far enough back to easily brake and go around, but what if I'd been one of the many, many, many drivers that think two car lengths is enough?

found cd
Another 'found cd'

Thursday 29October 2015
Thursday - OTR.

We've been watching the weather predictions for the Grand Canyon hike next week. Unfortunately it's been changing almost hourly, from warm, to rain, to pouring rain, to no rain again, and then chance of rain: and that's just at the bottom. At the top it's going from sun to snow and back...

I'd like to pack for anything and decide when we get there, but space in the vehicle is pretty limited.

Wednesday 28 October 2015

Wednesday - OTR.

Over at Information Dissemination they had (another) article on the Littoral Combat Ship. A particularly snarky comment amused me.

LCS proponents may then argue that even without mission modules, the LCS provides comparable capability to the recently-retired Oliver Hazard Perry class frigates. The counter is that benchmarking capability against a forty year-old frigate design with much of its weapons removed is a false comparison; if all that was required was a de-missiled, 1970s-era frigate, then perhaps there was little need for a new ship at all.

The LCS is essentially a large corvette, designed for close-to-land operations, and there's a lot of controversy about it. Essentially it's the "trying to put 10lbs of sugar in a 5lb bag"
problem - the ships are just too small to do everything well, and not particularly survivable in a high threat environment - one reasonably state of the art missile would certainly put one out of action and probably sink it.

But they were designed fifteen years ago, when the USA was the only remaining superpower and superior to the modest threats. Now, well, not so much. To be generally survivable now against even a second rate power you'd need a flotilla: a couple set up with 'mission modules' for ship-to-air defence, a couple set up for ship-to-ship defence, and a couple set up for anti-submarine defence, and then a couple set up for whatever the actual mission was.

Tuesday 27 October 2015
Tuesday - OTR. 

The first thing I did was to reject essentially all materials for the manhole remodel. Bah. But nothing met the Specs. Fortunately rebar and concrete and epoxy are easy to get, so it didn't delay the contractor too much.

He actually subbed out the work to a subcontractor, Pre-Con, who does this sort of work every day, which was nice.

More unmarked stuff, but that's Saticoy.

Monday 26 October 2015
Monday - OTR. Down in Ventura. The weather is better - in the high 70's and low 80's, which is still kind of ridiculous for Ventura, but so it goes. Better than 100F.

The work is going OK. The contractor is behind schedule, so I've been staying on the job site more than was originally planned, but that can't continue. The assistant project manager is covering inspection duties next week and will probably come up with a less time consuming protocol.

After clearing up the grade issue the contractor is starting at the downstream manhole and working upstream, which is the correct way to do it.

He's also getting ready to remodel the manhole base, deeper than previous, which involves redoing the manhole bench, and getting rid of an unnecessary inlet.

Sunday 25 October 2015
Sunday - Slept in a bit, until 6:30.

Then it was off to the grocery stores to stock up for Lancaster and Ventura.

I didn't do any hiking, my feet are actually a bit sore still, and it's probably better to rest them than to get some miniscule improvement in muscle tone.

The weather prognosis for this week at the Grand Canyon is rain, rain, and more rain. Supposedly it's going to dry out over next weekend, but the ground is going to be pretty damp...

I'll head down to Ventura tonight - after last weeks horrible commute I have no urge to go down in the morning.

Picture of the Week

west antelope valley

Looking east from the AV towards the sun in the east.

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