Reno's Rambles

Discussion in 'Adventure, Hiking, Backpacking and Travel' started by Reno Lewis, May 11, 2018.

  1. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Those black flies sound horrendous, I'll stick to our swarms of skeeters. At least they can be taken care of with bug spray for the most part.

    As far as the den, it's not a den to my knowledge, but an old dig. Likely a vein of gold or copper there that was dug out in the early 20th century. When I got down to the other side, I could see a couple of other small digs on the opposite bank.

    Pics coming.
     
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  2. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    May 19th, 2018 - The "U SUCK" cave.


    So on my evening walk, I decided to find a way down to, and across the water to the cave. Even though it was getting rather late, and only about 30 minutes until sundown.

    I had all of my normal gear, which includes a Fenix HL60R and a Fenix PD35, a magnum can of bear spray, my Winkler Field Knife and a rather large hardwood walking stick.


    One of the main roads I walk down. It continues for just under 1km past the far end of the curve.

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    Our phones have relatively good cameras, and take rather decent night time pics.

    I threw my HL60R on my head and began the scramble down the bank. Once I got to the water, my mom and brother took a few pics.

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    On top of this, I also threw a Maxpedition phone holster onto the right shoulder strap of my HPG Tarahumara, and let it record as I made my way to the cave.

    The first part is vertical because of this.

    As I crossed the stream, I was scanning for any sign of animal travel. I didn't see anything fresh, so I felt safe enough to proceed with caution towards the entrance.

    Near the end of this video, as I make some audible noise, I have my can of bear spray in my left hand, and my walking stick pointing forward in my right, though it's not really seen on video.



    I had to cut the video into two parts due to the change to horizontal filming once I cleared the cave.

    First thing I saw, in old, weathered orange spray paint "U SUCK". Well jeez, thanks...o_O




    The "cave" actually looks to be an old ore vein dig, likely copper or gold, from the early 20th century. It's about 12' deep, 6' tall and about 6' wide.

    In this picture, you can see the dark brown dirt to the bottom right. A lot of the time, fresh dark brown dirt like that is due to something walking on it, and removing the crusty dry top layer, however this was all fresh and dark.

    In fact, it almost looked raked...

    It did look as if a stone had been moved, leaving a crater, but there were no definitive tracks or sign that I could make out at the time.

    I'll likely go back and look at the ground closer in the future, taking into account my own sign, of course.

    In hindsight, I should've taken pictures of that dirt to examine later, but I didn't. Oh well.

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    Evidence of an old fire, a couple of broken beer bottles and two pencils are most of what I found.

    Not sure what's up with the pencils... Found them on the ledge outside of the entrance, where I leaned my stick in the video.

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    Around this point, as I was putting my phone away, a small bat came home, and freaked right out that I was there.

    Apparently bats don't like blinding bright 900 lumen headlamps shone at them, and the poor thing started flying in circles inside the cave. Right as I went to video tape it, it scurried away into a crevice in the rock.


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    This is what 900 lumens out of a Fenix HL60R looks like from about 125'.

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    From where I was, looking back towards the other bank, I spotted a couple of other, smaller digs.

    If you look closely, towards the top middle, you can see my brother standing up on the trail.

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    As it began to become darker and darker, I crossed the stream and scrambled back up the slope, packed my gear and headed out.

    Put on another 3km after this on residential roads, looking mostly like this.

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    We had been hearing a "thud-thud-thud-thud" in the trees as we walked, it almost sounded like a large dove/pigeon, or even a grouse. About 150 meters down the road, my brother said he saw a large bird land at the top of a tree to our left, and recognized it as an owl.

    From what I could tell in person, a Great Horned Owl.

    Unfortunately I didn't have a real camera with zoom, so this is the best pic I got.

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    Last shot of the night. A silhouette of a tree in front of the inky blue night sky, with a crescent moon.

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    Cropped it and made it my phone wallpaper. :p

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    That's all for now, thanks for looking!
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019
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  3. Wolfman Zack

    Wolfman Zack Member

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    Very interesting.
    I wonder if someone is using the cave as a place to either write or sketch, as evidenced by the pencils.
    They don’t look like they’ve been there that long.
    It also would explain the raked appearance of the floor if someone recently cleaned it out to make it more pleasant to be inside there.
     
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  4. Bushman5

    Bushman5 Member

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    awesome stuff Reno!.

    You should turn that cave into something cool.........low seats, tables, candle lanterns, checkers board etc.
     
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  5. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Thanks guys, sorry it took me so long to reply, I've had a busy week.

    I plan to go back and investigate more here soon, hopefully during daylight hours. I plan to closer at the contents of the cave, see if I can find anything interesting, and maybe lay a track trap.

    For now though, I've just been practicing friction fire.

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  6. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    June 5th, 2018 - "Pacific North Wet"


    It has always been my preference to walk in the rain, especially in the forest. It keeps the heat down, the flying bugs hide away, there are very few other people out and about, and it just refreshes everything around.

    So during yesterdays heavy mist, I decided to go for a walk.

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    Went through the little park at the end of the street. They cleared a bunch of trees and underbrush so as to open it up. They did a good job. Wood chips from the cut trees line a pathway through the forested area.

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    However, immediately off the mulch trail is pristine mossy undergrowth.

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    Heading down the main road.

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    And dropping down into the forest.

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    Recognize this?

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    A really beautiful little cascade not far upstream from the cave.

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    Looking downstream

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    And back up stream.

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    End of part 1.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019
  7. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Some soaked kit. Gear has to be waterproof in the PNW.

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    @CWB Thought you might appreciate a recent acquisition of mine.

    *LOTS OF KNIFE PICS*

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    End of part 2.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019
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  8. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Saw a little spider web covered in rain drops in the crotch of a cedar tree while I was tightening my boots.

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    A pine pitch run about as tall as I am. (7ft tall staff for scale).

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    These are just a little ways downstream of the cave. Deceptively small looking on film, these little waterfalls are about 15' tall. Slip and fall in the water there, and you're in for some serious injuries.

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    Just some neat looking moss.

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    The sun broke through here.

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    It was at this point that I decided to drop off the trail, down the 50 degree or so, wet, slippery slope down to the water.

    I wanted to see if it would be possible to walk along the river bank all the way down. Technically it is, but it would be dangerous.

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    Something I noticed about these pics is how well my dark clothing blends into the surrounding foliage.

    Save for my red and white hat, of course.

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    Specifically this next photo. I think I could blend in pretty well if I wanted to.

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    This might give you an idea of the grade of the slope. It was steep.

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    End of part 3.
     
  9. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    From there we continued on our way.

    Anybody have any idea what this is? There's quite a few of them around.

    Very unique looking leaf.

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    Any idea on this little guy? He was on what appears to be a dead Arbutus.

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    Headed down to the beach.

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    Heading back up the hill, I did get to meet a cute and rather energetic Burmese Mountain Dog/Sheperd puppy named Marvin. Got thoroughly slobbered on, haha:)


    On the way home, I came across a little snail in the middle of the road. Picked him up and transported him to safety.

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    Also spotted a little bunny outside of a marine monitoring station.

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    Also came across a crow which met a rather grisly demise on the road, but I won't post the pics here.

    All in all, a rather eventful walk, great exercise and really refreshing.


    That's all for now!
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019
  10. CWB

    CWB Member

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    Wow what a great outing. Thanks for sharing. BTW, this is the only knife I have multiples of, and I recommend this blade to everyone. It’s verylight and nimble. Not sure if Fiddleback will produce anymore of the pro-series due to the cost of running a large batch. So get them while you can.
     
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  11. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    I've always been curious about the production schedule for these Fiddleback Pro blades. So you think they might be discontinued, eh?
     
  12. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Just a quick video showing how to tie the double loop type lanyard I like to use on my ferro rods, Vic Farmer, etc.



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  13. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Photos removed for now.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2018
  14. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Currently going through my kit, tore my Umlindi down to the bones and I'm building it back up from scratch.

    Plan on going on an exploratory expedition (all day trip, 12+ hours) up a mountain near me. Going to scout it out, take in the views, do some photography, maybe have lunch and hopefully be back before dark.

    Way too hot today though, same for tomorrow and the next day. We're above 35C in the shade at the moment. Going to wait until it drops down to around 20C come Wednesday/Thursday.

    Probably going to have to wait until at least Thursday though, we've got a thunder storm warning for Wednesday...
     
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  15. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    The above mentioned day trip had to be postponed due to rescue stuff, and is currently on hold due to extreme heat and high fire danger.




    Went for a short (very short) hike yesterday evening, about 30 min from sundown. Got about 3/4 of a kick into the woods when I felt something land on my arm.

    Was already being swarmed by skeeters, walking through spider webs and whatnot, but my pants were tucked and I was sporting Muskol on any exposed flesh. I was wearing a simple synthetic T-shirt due to the insane heat.

    But, as I looked down, what greeted my eyes startled me.

    Big black flying spider tick vampire with muscular claw legs. :eek:


    *Not my pic*

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    I have never seen anything like it before. It looked like a flying spider mixed with a tick, but it only had 6 legs. 6 really stout legs. And it was pressing it's face against my skin...

    Tried to shake it off. It clamped down on my arm. So I tried to squish it, but it wouldn't squish, so I tried to wipe it off on my pants. Nothing. It's body was like a gummy bear. But with muscular claw/legs that held on with the might of a thousand skeeters. Tried flicking it, as hard and accurately as I could, and finally, after three or four attempts, it finally released its death hold on my arm.

    Naturally, I was startled. I've never seen such a bug before in my life, but I grew up in the North. I'm not used to weird coastal bugs. So I stopped, took my pack off and doubled, nay, tripled up on my Muskol.


    To my absolute horror, just as I was finishing rubbing Muskol on my exposed, fleshy arms, another one of these monsters landed right onto my arm, over top of the fresh Muskol and proceeded to plant it's vamptic face to my skin. Seemingly unfazed by the chemical.

    Flicked it off.

    At this point, I decide to use some cell data and research what was attacking me. Didn't take too long to find out they're called "Deer Keds".

    They're a fly. That burrow into you, and drink your blood. Causes a welt with severe itching that can last nearly a month.

    Nope.

    Screw that.

    Screw everything about that.

    I'm out.

    Threw the Tara back on and jogged my way back to the bridge in like 45 seconds flat. Which is when I noticed I had another on my right arm. Just as I got that one off, I noticed another one on my left tricep.

    Covered the last 350 meters to the edge of the woods in maybe a minute.

    Incentivized exercise, lol.


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    Here's a couple videos showing Deer Keds in all of their awful glory. The first video demonstrates how tough the little boogers are to remove, the second shows what one with wings looks like on your arm.




     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2018
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  16. Charlie Delta

    Charlie Delta Member

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    No thank you.
     
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  17. Bushman5

    Bushman5 Member

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    I HATE THOSE!

    worse part is after a few bites.....the open wounds draw even more of them in .....
     
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  18. Reno Lewis

    Reno Lewis Knot-A-Challenge Champion

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    Oh, that's just lovely...

    Yeah, I won't be going into the bush without long sleeves from now on. Might even have to start wearing my Buff as a neck gator...

    Any tips as to repel them? Muskol seems to do absolutely nothing.
     
  19. Bushman5

    Bushman5 Member

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    Dad used to use a bug shirt in Ontario when canoeing. Sprays are worthless. permethrin works a bit, on the clothes. but its deadly to dogs and cats
     
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  20. Stone

    Stone Member

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    I've forwarded this picture to Sigourney Weaver. I think you should talk with her about it.

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