Sunday, November 30, 2008

Off to Montreal this morning. Long day ahead of me...the busiest travel day of the year. Good thing I fly out of Reno. This quaint airport doesn't get too busy and is easy to navigate.

Montreal is the largest ciry in the Canadian province of Quebec and the second largest in Canada. Originally, Montreal was called Ville-Marie, perhaps named after Mount Royal, the three-headed hill at the heart of the city. Montreal is among the five largest French-speaking cities in the world and is the largest French-speaking city in North America. With 1,620,693 people residing in the city of Montreal proper, in 2007 Forbes Magazine ranked Montreal as the 10th cleanest city in the world. It is also ranked highly as the 16th most liveable cities according to some London based magazine.

I've got a plane to catch, but I hope you enjoyed some facts about Montreal.

Au revoir

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

We do big things


Today, we start to cook the pies. Tomorrow the kitchen will be filled with different smells. Smells that only come once a year. I'm excited. Thanksgiving might be one of my favorite holidays. It's a day, originally, to express thanks for one's material and spiritual possessions. What could be a better holiday? Expressing thanks is so rarely achieved by some people, but on and around this holiday communities come together, families come together, and friends unite to say thanks.

I'm thankful that I live in Lake Tahoe...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Three Cups of Tea

I've just finished one of the most inspirational books I've read in a long time. From the second I picked it up, I couldn't put it down. You've got to read this book!!

Written by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin, Three Cups of Tea is a winner of The Kiriyama Prize and tells “The astonishing, uplifting story of a real-life Indiana Jones and his remarkable humanitarian campaign in the Taliban’s backyard.”

On August 14th of this year, Pakistan's government awarded Greg Mortenson Pakistan's highest civil award, Sitara-e-Pakistan ("Star of Pakistan") for his ourage and humanitarian effort to promote education, and literacy in rural areas for the last 15 years.

Greg Mortenson is fighting terrorism with education...what more could the world ask for?

For more information visit and read this book!!!


It's been sunny and warm here. Despite the fact that I can't wait for it to snow, it's better that it's sunny rather than rainy and cold. Feels like summer time with frosty mornings. I wonder when the snow will fly again. Until then, I'm trying to make the best of it and spend as much time outside as possible.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Cruising in Lake Tahoe

Today Ryan and I went for a bike ride on our cruisers. Here in Tahoe we ride cruisers. No fixed gear bikes like city hipsters (I just found out what a hipster was a few weeks ago). It was sweet.

Here's my bike shot Tony.

Ryan got sucker punched while DJing the other night. He's got a metal face now. We decided to take our cruisers out rather than mountain bikes because of this. People who sucker punch aren't my friends.

Bike path scenery, Truckee river. I swear just a few weeks ago I was getting ready for winter and this river was going to freeze over.

We took the scenic boardwalk on the way home from lunch and ran into a few friends doing good things. They've been working on this wall since February.

Putting down the tools for a minute to climb.

I did my part and helped clean the rock. Then I got the feeling of being on the beach when I was a little kid and eating sand. I had a lot of dirt in my teeth.

Yeah, he's in swim trunks and no shirt. It was a warm day in Tahoe. Tomorrow is going to be even more warm.

The wall features a sick traverse. Pretty much all overhanging.

This is the view from the wall. Not bad.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Spaghetti Squash and Spaghetti Sauce

Made this last night. Pretty quick and easy. Thought I would share. Spaghetti Squash is fun.

1 spaghetti squash cut in half length wise
Olive Oil
2 yellow onions chopped
1 can tomato paste
5-7 tomatoes chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
1/4 fresh basil leaves finely chopped
a touch of brown sugar (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat Oven to 350 Degrees.
2. Lightly cover cooking tray with olive oil.
3. Take seeds out of squash and place spaghetti squash on tray cut side down.
4. Bake squash for 50 minutes.
5. Oil saucepan and add chopped onions on medium heat.
6. Cook until golden brown or to your preference.
7. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic, and brown sugar.
8. Allow sauce to reduce to desired thickness.
9. Add basil part way through reducing sauce.
10. When desired thickness of sauce is obtained, the sauce is done.
11. When the squash is ready and slightly cooled use a fork to scoop out the spaghetti like squash.
12. Top the squash with your homemade sauce, garnished with fresh basil, and enjoy your meal.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


We got our early season dusting. It was nice to see the mountains blanketed in white. Today was another story though. I was in shorts and a t-shirt. Doesn't look like this anymore. Just a tease. Kinda got my hopes up a little bit.

The next week looks sunny to me. Maybe I'll go on a road trip in search of shred time. Or maybe I'll get suckered back into the summer lifestyle and climb some rock. Either way...I'm itching for face shots and getting pretty anxious.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

South America and a little bit of Tahoe

Share Some Candy

Just came across this site ( It's nice to have something fresh to feast your eyes on, a site of design and art inspiration that can have unlimited contributors.

A few of my favorites are below. Enjoy and check it out for yourself. It's worthy.


I just came across this article at I thought it was pretty fun. I've seen this done before a few times, but not on this scale...

Ever open up the box for your new monitor or DVD player, look at the Styrofoam packaging and wonder what on earth you're going to do with it? Well, Kevin Kelly sure did, and he came up with a great idea for a way to repurpose all that frightening foam.

There aren't a whole lot of ways to get rid of Styrofoam. And usually when an eco-minded person gets stuck with it in their packaging, there is at least a few minutes of staring at the white sculpted culprit and thinking sad, frustrated thoughts.

Or, you can create robots out of it!

Artist Michael Salter created a 22 foot tall robot, along with a range of other sizes of styrobots.

Salter points out the problem with using such an un-earth-friendly packaging as Styrofoam in our consumerist culture. From Komo News
"I have a sneaker collection," he admits, "which is absurd, right? You don't need more than one pair of sneakers. But at the same time, I'm conscious of the fact that this culture is about collecting stuff. The fact that we buy electronics at a time when they're no longer really repairable ... I mean, I know there's a TV-repair shop somewhere, but I've never gone to a TV-repair shop in my life. You drag it to the curb and then you buy a new one. And the foam takes up more space in the box than the object does."

One big issue with buying new electronics that we don't talk much about is the problem with packaging. Buying used versus new prevents a lot of e-waste, but it also prevents a lot of wasted, non-recyclable packaging from entering the consumer stream.

Granted, this is still no solution to the problem with styrofoam. But while processes for recycling it are being sorted out, we might as well appreciate cool things made from dumped packaging rather than allowing it to head to landfills.

Friday, November 7, 2008


Last week I ran into some friends at the TGR premier. They were on their way to Yosemite the next day and invited me to join them. I went home and packed up my stuff in a hury. Can't pass up the opportunity to spend some time in this magical place.

We were only there for 2 and a half days, but managed to climb three 5 out of 5 star climbs in that time. So far, with my little Yosemite experience, it seems like time is precious there. Alyways on the go, planning, hiking, a little sleep, lot's of food, approaching, climbing, and descending. Epic trip, awesome people, beautiful views, and lot's of bears.

Yosemite Valley. The view from out campsite. Not a bad place to wake up.

Our record of bear sightings in one day was 4. This was at the base of out climb. I had a bar in my pack he was after. Good thing we were up on the wall in no time.


Everywhere you look in Yosemite is beautiful.

What's camping without marshmellows? My marshmellow stick. Kept me safe from bears and I never lost it. Good thing my initials were engraved.

Ming, day two in Yosemite. Second 5 out of 5 star climb of the trip.

Following Ming's lead.

Double crack ahead. So much fun to climb.

My truck after getting down from Half Dome's Snake Dike route at 9 P.M. Long days, short nights, heading home, just throw everything in...let's get some pizza!

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Path To Freedom

I've just finished this book. It's extraordinary and taught me a lot about the Dalai Lama's life, Tibet, and much more. I highly recommend it. Here is a a bit from the chapter titled From East To West. Enjoy.

Overall I have found much that is impressive about western society. In particular, I admire its energy and creativity and hunger for knowledge. On the other hand, a number of things about the western way of life cause me concern. One thing I have noticed is an inclination for people to think in terms of 'black and white' and 'either, or', which ignores the facts of interdependence and relativity. They have a tendency to lose sight of the grey areas which inevitably exist between tow points of view.

Another observation is that there are a lot of people in the West who live very comfortably in large cities, but virtually isolated from the broad mass of humanity. I find this very strange - that under the circumstances of such material well-being and with thousands of brothers and sisters for neighbours, so many people appear able to show their true feelings only to their cats and dogs. This indicates a lack of spiritual values, I feel. Part of the problem here is perhaps the intense competitiveness of life in these countries, which seems to breed fear and a deep sense of insecurity.

For me, this sense of alienation is symbolised by something I once saw at the home of a very rich man whose guest I was on one of my trips abroad. It was a very large private house, obviously designed expressly for convenience and comfort, and fitted with every kind of appliance. However, when I went into the bathroom, I could not help noticing two large bottles of pills on the shelf above the hand basin. One contained tranquillisers, the other sleeping pills. This was proof, too, that material prosperity alone cannot bring about lasting happiness.

Chasing Pink

This past week has been keeping me busy. I went to New Mexico, camped/climbed in Yosemite, and chased pink in Colorado. Now I'm home and it's snowing!!!

This post is random...I'll share some photos from Yosemite in the near future.

New Mexico. I was only there for about 24 hours, so I didn't get to see much, but I did get to eat the green chilies. It wasn't as warm as it sounded either. New Mexico sounds pretty warm in my mind. At least that was my thought process when I left my jacket in the car.

This is the tree outside my window. While it was bright and yellow it would make my day everyday. The leaves are gone now. It looks like some twigs coming out of the ground.

I went to Colorado last Thursday for the K2 Pink Chase. Between the nine women participating we raised over $11,000 for BCRF. We skied at A-Basin. Not much happening on the one run open. It was still fun to get back on my skis, despite going straight the whole day as I was trying to ski as many vertical feet possible within the 4 hours of the fund raiser.