July 26, 2019


Today was spent closer to camp, we started by hiking the Lakeside Trail around High Knob Lake.


Kodak was happy to go in and out of the water


Then we visited the High Flag Recreation Area overlooking Norton, VA for a picnic lunch


Norton is a Bigfoot Sanctuary city, locals call it a Woodbooger


and explored a bit


we spent the next couple of hours driving forest service and dirt roads looking for hidden camp spots or whatever else we could find… this trail dead-ended and required a 10 point turn around


The woods are full of these flowers, maybe an upside-down Cheetah Lily


Next up – going to see Once Upon A Time in Hollywood

July 24, 2019


Another day in the Jefferson National Forest and the Falls of Dismal


We had the place to ourselves, we hiked up the creek, explored the rocks and I swam around to see if I could jump from the top (I couldn’t) This is a great spot on a warm day to swim and picnic!


The afternoon was spent packing up camp to move further west, getting stuck behind an accident and waiting for Lifeflight (which circled and left) setting up a new camp, and visiting High Knob Lookout Tower for the sunset.




I always tell my students, when photographing a sunrise or sunset, turn around and photograph what is being illuminated by the light!


July 6, 2019


FlipPac repair Day – goal one remove torsion bar and 4 old hinges


At the end of the day we were successful – but it required drilling holes in the back and using a 10 foot rebar to drive them out – video/timelapse here

Thanks James and Elizabeth for driving 5 hours to come help me! I could not have done this without y’all!

July 4, 2019


Early morning ride, like all my out and back rides, I tried to negative split the ride. Out avg was 17.5 mph and back was 19.8 – good start to the day.


This was the crew we camped with – or at least did pot luck lunch with.


Loaded up and heading home… the Land Cruiser did a great job, but I want my Tacoma/Flippac back!

July 6, 2018


My day started like almost everyday of the trip, an hour climb up the forest service road outside our campsite and a 12 minute bomb back down. The best part was at the turn around, there was cell service, so I could check email and make a call each morning.


Fog and nightfall. If you camp with James and Elizabeth, you will eat well and still enjoy a luxury or two…. tonight was movie night, “Paul” was played on the wall of the E-Z up… but the hard drive wasn’t playing nice, so parts were played twice (or more) sometimes it was in French, sometimes a narrator described what was happening (or DV – Descriptive Video)

The middle of the day we searched for and found a swimming hole on a road that wasn’t on a map…. but we cut it short when I discovered a steering rack leak and no fluid in my pump…. how to quickly get to a town without lots of curves in the mountains…. impossible!

July 3, 2018


The day started early with a trip to Wolf Creek Falls.


We had the waterfall all to ourselves.


After lunch, we hiked to a 2nd waterfall – Little Fall Branch.


Then on to Max Patch for a sunset and Milky Way viewing party. Lighting plays in the clouds.


the sunset was amazing!




But the Milky Way was awesome with lightning still bouncing around the clouds below it!


July 2, 2018


The day started with a drive through Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, a mistake that will never happen again (way too touristy for me) to get to Cades Cove, a neat history filled loop, including this working grist mill.


Just a bear along the road, it was not interested in us at all!


James works on figuring out electrical gremlins, after thinking of complex problems to solve, sometimes the simplest answer is correct… a bad cell in his battery.


James checks how badly I am beating him at an English style pub in Gatlinburg.

Feb. 24, 2018

(Photo by Jay Capers)

Everything you need to upgrade your Tacoma brakes to the bigger Tundra brakes.

(Photo by Jay Capers)

Nothing is bolt on…. this is only trimming the dust shield

(Photo by Jay Capers)

This should be a 3 hour job for the home mechanic, I picked up the parts at 9:30am, went for a bike ride and had lunch, so really started at about 1pm, Clay and I finished at 8pm, after the first bedding of new pads and rotors, we decided to try one more system bleed and one wheel wouldn’t open, so we called it a night. Thanks to Clay for helping and loaning tools.