Archive for September, 2012

Allez Cuisine!

Although it may be hopeful to think it will be as awesome as it was, this is still good news

this is still good news
.

Sienckiewicz Dungeons & Dragons

Holy Shit! That’s all that came to mind.

J-Chola

You read that right. I am so VERY happy with the internet right now!

Segueing from Laura’s adventure

This post doesn’t have a main theme, just adding to Laura’s trip and the following comments. Below is my account from 2008.

Laura mentioned she was afraid to climb Angels Landing, but this is the view from that vantage point. It was a grueling zigzag hike towards Angels Landing. When I arrived at the start of Angels Landing, I overheard many people say they were too scared to continue on to Angels Landing, despite how long they’ve already hiked to this point. My intention was to stay at the top until I could shoot the sunset, but I didn’t realize the cliffs were blocking the sun as it set, so I knew there wouldn’t be a visible sunset.

It started to get dark fast, so I quickly ascended back down. Unfortunately, the trail looked very different when going back, so there were a few moments where I ended up at the edge of a cliff. I started to panic, because I knew my flashlight wouldn’t help me at all trying to retrace the trail. I kept looking for the chain that threaded its way along the trail as a sign of the trail. It kept eluding me because the end of that chain was behind a rock. Once I found it, I started racing down the trail, which probably wasn’t the smartest thing to do, because at one point, there was a lower ledge that I jumped down to. Normally, I would have cleared it with no problems, but I failed to take into account the 25 pounds of camera gear sitting on my back. So, when I landed, the extra weight on my back sent me toppling forward, while both my left and right side were the edges of a cliff. After I cleared Angels Landing, I raced the rest of the way down and managed to catch the last shuttle leaving the park.

I mentioned before, when I failed to get the permit for the Wave, I went to Devil’s Garden. This area is know for the interestingly shaped rocks left behind from erosion. The road was so rocky that I got a flat tire there.

The next morning, I replaced the flat tire, went back for the lottery and won myself a permit. However, the permit is for the next day, so I spent the rest of that day exploring some nearby rock formations. This is one example of the myriad places one can explore that is not well known to visitors. I also wanted to stay there for the sunset, but there were these tiny black bugs that kept biting me. At one point, I was at the edge of a cliff, waving my arms around to shoo away those critters. I think their intention was to get me off balance and fall of the cliff.

I’ve never hiked a trail quite like the Wave. Since the trail is not marked, you have to rely on a pamphlet that they hand out, which includes pictures and text to explain how to arrive there.

I spent most of the trip in Utah, but I made a last push to Arizona to visit the Antelope Canyons. I normally hate joining tourist groups, but in order to visit the upper canyons, you need to go with a tour group. That’s because they passed a law after some tourists drowned from a flash flood. As it turns out, it was an awesome experience.

Looking at my photo, you would think there weren’t many people there, but truth be told, it was packed. But the tour guides were amazing. Not only were they able to work around each other, but they knew exactly which spot and which time to shoot. I also appreciated the fact that the tour guides were Native Americans, so the profits went to them.

Okay, so I mentioned several times of me standing on cliffs when taking photos, and since Ben asked to see them, these are what I have at the moment.

This was the second time that my girlfriend (Yufen) and I visited this tiny island. When we first visited, she was so petrified of watching me walk down the slope of this cliff. As time passed, she started to get used to seeing me dangling from cliff edges. Now, she’ll even join me, provided that I’m ahead of her (see image below).

This one was at a tiny island on the north part of Scotland (Orkney Islands). Yufen was clever to take this photo that not only showed what I was shooting, but also where we were.