Thursday, May 26, 2011

Garden: May

Green beans and sunlight cast a warm green glow in the bedroom. I love it.

Some of the chard is doing quite well. Others are not photo worthy but I have faith that they'll get there.

Eggplant with some pretty flowers that will hopefully turn into a delicious meal.

The set up.
Green beans, quinoa, tomatoes, eggplant, carrots, and onions.

Those Kentucky Wonders sure are living up to their name.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Fin retrofit

So recently i cut off my glassed on fins and installed fin boxes to be able to switch out different fins and hopefully learn a bit and experience more with my fish. i'd been thinking about doing this since soon after i finished my fish, but didn't' want to ruin it or anything, but figured, what the hell, why not?!

Here's the set up prior to starting... looks pretty nice

bam! gone! fin scars

sanded down the scars, then set up where the fin boxes would go. set them up with the same toe in as before i cut them off. i'm using lokbox fin boxes, and they sell a router and router templates for 150 bucks, but if you have a dremel and a steady hand (and you're not selling the product and thus having to make it absolutely perfect), you can go ahead and go this route, and keep your 150 bucks. and yes, mine was not perfect, but, i didn't' mess up big or anything either

overhead shot

this is with the fin boxes glassed in - did two layers of 6 oz cloth over them, extending about an inch and a half out from the edge of the box. one thing i realized as i was about to put them in is that the fin cant (angle) i think is supposed to be set up when you install the fin box, i.e. the fin box should be installed at the appropriate cant. mine is 5 degrees, but when i held it at 5 degrees, the top of the fin box is obviously not flush with the board, and it seemed really angled, as if even if i altered the routered out hole, that it would still look weird and angled. So i glassed them in so that the fins would be perpendicular, and thus the top of the box is flush with the flat surface of the board. I'm going to be making the fins, so i can give them the appropriate fin cant when i mold the base of them. ya, not ideal, but i'm learning, adn this is an easy thing to keep in mind when making the fins bases. i also wrote the dimensions and dated the board because i'd been wanting to do this since i finished it.

The photo above this one is when the board is laying down. when the resin was pretty dry around the fin boxes, i set the board standing up against a wall to get it out of the way of things. When i wrote the dimensions and date, i did so with a sharpee i had, instead of my paint marker, because i couldnt' find it. well, the sharpee didn't hold as well, and the writing began floating up into the resin and dripping down once the board was standing up. the resin would not dry here, as something in the sharpee was limiting the reaction of the resin adn catalyst. so yea, wiped this away, sanded it back down, and redid it. not a big deal, but something else learned

all finished!

overhead view of it all done. you can still slightly see where the fins used to be, but that will be covered up when fins are in place on this guy. Still working on some sets of fins, but i should have some done soon. working on 5 sets right now! psyched!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

New board!

So i went to a board swap at Harbor surf shop over the weekend to just see what was there. I saw one i was really interested in, talked to the guy, but left and went home empty handed, thought about it more, and went back and bought it! pumped! got it out once so far with mike the other day and it's awesome! super different feel to it.

6'3" displacement hull.

with a 9" flex fin! super pumped on this one. big plans for this summer to spend more time in the water!

Friday, May 6, 2011

New handplanes

Here's a few new handplanes i've just recently finished.

This guy came from the beavis and butthead shortboard i found in an alley. pretty psyched on it. it was kinda hard glassing it with it so small. I actually glassed it once, and it came out crappy, so i sanded it smooth, spray painted it white, and went for it again. It came out better this time. I'm psyched on the top a lot, but the bottom is a bit messy looking still...

Got a few channels in it, one deep middle one, adn two shallower side ones, so we'll see how it works. The messy lap lines show quite a bit, especially in the blue colored area, which i think is maybe from me not mixing the color in well enough, or using enough color.... idk, plenty more board from that beavis shortboard to make about 5 more handplanes i figure. probably try to cut lap on the next one to see how that turns out.

This is the latest wooden one i've done. took it to kauai, but only used once when it was close outs. psyched on teh shell under the palm, this came from my brothers initial handplane, as he thought this up somehow. haven't seen any other handplanes with a bump at your hand, but it's a pretty good feel.
bottom side (forgot to woodburn the initials and date, wish i had, as it would look better than sharpie on wood)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Kauai Day 8

We got up, feasted for breakfast in our kitchen, and headed to the surf shop. Rented a 5’10” skinnier fish board today, and it was definitely the smallest volume board I’ve ridden. It took a minute to catch some, as they were bigger waves that day, but I got some really nice ones, and was psyched on how the board felt. The fins were pretty small, which makes me want to changed out my glassed on fins on my board for fin boxes so I can make different fins for it (already in the process of doing this now!). We went back and cleaned up the room and checked out, and then went back to the beach to surf some more, while Mel went to some shops in town. After this, we returned the board, and headed to Anini beach to make lunch and hang out. We dried out our tent and gear from the two nights before when it poured on us.

The Hanalei Inn

Cozy, awesome setup

Flowers just outside room

Board for the day

Then we headed to Secret Beach, which we read about in our travel book, so it wasn’t so much of a secret, but was very unpopulated, and unmarked. It’s also commonly known as a nude beach, or that it is accepted, so we saw a few people going for it here. The scenery at this beach was pretty awesome, with large trees and rocks, and cliffs right up on the beach, along with a lighthouse on one end. We relaxed here and watched guys surf gnarly waves, then headed out and went to the Kapa’a to hang out and get Thai iced teas again. They were good, but not as good as the first time unfortunately. We headed to Lydgate Beach after this b/c we’d read about it and it sounded cool, but we hadn’t made time to get there. We made dinner here and hung out – it wasn’t as cool of a beach as we thought, compared to others, but it was still nice. We realized we had a few food items, such as peanut butter left over, after we made dinner, and I didn’t want to waste it, so I started eating as much peanut butter as possible, but couldn’t finish it all, as I was already stuffed from dinner when I started, and we even still had leftovers from dinner cuz we were both stuffed. Needless to say, I didn’t’ feel super hot, and Mel also felt stuffed. We returned the car, headed to the airport, and relaxed, trying to help our bellies feel a bit better. We had an overnight flight to Phoenix at least, so we slept most of the way there. Then we got to hang out with Sean, Brad, Brett, and Dylan in Phoenix for our 6 hour layover that I accidentally purchased instead of a 45 minute layover. It worked out though and was super fun to see those dudes! Needless to say, we were exhausted by the time we got to our place that evening. The trip was incredible, and also incredibly exhausting. If you can't tell by now, this island is highly recommended by us, and we are sure to return!

Looking back up the trail down to Secret Beach

Incredibly psyched on life

Secret Beach, pretty empty!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Kauai Day 7

We got a little bit of sleep the past night, although it was off and on due to pouring rain, and cat fights. We got up, packed, and headed out down the trail by 6 AM. We still smelled the blood as we passed the creek by camp. We were definitely pretty beat from the day before, but we were getting an early start, so we’d take our time. One thing we noticed is that since we’re the first ones on the trail in the morning, there’s lots of new spider webs to go through, and get stuck on you. This resulted in one of those spiders being on my head at one point, but luckily Mel saw it and swiped it away. About 2.5 hours into hiking, we finally came up on hikers coming our way, which was to see other people and talk for a minute before moving on. After a while, there were many people passing us going towards the camps, and it was sometimes a bit hard to find a place to stand off the trail as others passed, due to it being so skinny. I won’t go into it, but we were getting tired quick. We made it to the 2 mile in beach, and relaxed for a minute. From the cliffs above, I saw some guys pulling into big barrels while surfing, probably 8 foot waves that looked pretty gnarly, so that provided some cool scenery, not that we needed anymore than we were getting. The mile from mile marker 2 to mile marker 1 seemed to be the longest thing ever and almost totally up a steep incline, and in the sun. I think neither of us talked from mile marker 2 to 1, and then barely any from marker 1 to the start. We immediately got water and then went and jumped in the ocean and relaxed. I tried hitching a ride to the car while Mel waited with the stuff, but I ended up having to walk the mile to the car – I think having Mel with me woulda helped get a ride.
We enjoyed the flowers along the way

The final climbs seemed endless!

Big waves down below

We then drove to Hanalei, our new favorite town, and saw Hanalei Inn, which we’d read about in our travel book as a cheap, nice place. We stopped in and they had one room open, so we went for it. We deserved it! It was awesome. We went to the beach and hung out, body surfed with my handboard, and just relaxed. Unfortunately the waves were closeouts mostly, so no great rides, but some fun drop ins still. This was the first time I’d been trying out my new handboard too! Then we got stuff from the grocery store to cook that night, as the inn had a fully furnished kitchen! We cooked an awesome meal, and were both psyched. We then went to the beach and took a long walk to enjoy the ocean and night sky.

Got these guys out this day

Psyched on the meal!

Ahi, mashed potatoes, and asparagus! so good

Psyched on our trip (and each other)

Kauai Day 6

Waking up at Anini Beach

We woke up at Anini, only about 20 yards from the water, and under trees. This was without a doubt the best camp spot we’d been at. We showered in the outdoor showers, and headed to Hanalei to get some supplies for our big hike today on the Kalaulau Trail, along the Na Pali Coast. Mel went to a coffee shop and I ran into a grocery store. I came out with two bananas and an apple to go along with the oatmeal we’d fix, and Mel came back with a Maui mocha and a cinnamon roll, stating, they looked insane. We were about to go on an 11 mile hike, on what was to be our toughest trail we’d done, and this is what she got, ha. For the record, the cinnamon roll looked incredible and tasted even better. We went to Haena campground to park the car there, although it was a mile from the trailhead, the car would be safer there over night. We packed up and stuck our thumbs out and got a ride with a couple from Idaho who was heading our way. They dropped us off and he headed out. The trail was immediately a steep incline, over big rocks about twice the size of your head, thus we knew this was gonna be serious. The trail was basically up and down into and out of valleys, right from the get go and the entire way. The flat dirt sections were few and far between, so much that you loved them each time you got to a flat section. Each time you hiked out of a valley though, you’d end up on a cliff going around a mountain, up high above the ocean, and each time the view seemed to get better. Sometimes we’d come around the mountain and there’d be huge waterfalls way back up in the valley pouring down, so far away and up high it was almost impossible to gauge how big the waterfalls actually were.


All smiles

This is what you get to look at the entire trail

That water down there is actually that color!

These guys have webs everywhere! They're pretty gnarly looking. Mel saw one on my head the next morning and I freaked!

Other side of things

Beach offerings

That totals to 83 people i think


Saw this guy crawling around

We handled the beginning well, with lots of breaks, as we were on no schedule. We planned to be back on the trail and camping for 2.5 days. We’d heard that some of the trail is sketchy and the trail is only a foot wide with a sheer drop right there. This seemed to be the case as a lot of the time the trail was super skinny, with a big drop on your right side, down the mountain and straight to the ocean. We handled it well though and took our time. We got to the camp 6 miles in at about 1:30, which took us about 5 hours to get to. We ate lunch and headed onward. At about 7 miles in, we came to a big valley that didn’t have vegetation like all the other valleys, and it had a sign indicating that the cliffs were crumbling rocks and very dangerous. We scoped it out and started hiking, but almost immediately Mel had a bit of a panic attack, with reason, and we stopped to reevaluate it. We could see the trail along this entire dangerous section (about a ¼ mile long probably) and it seemed that it got worse the farther you went. We decided we didn’t need to risk it and stopped there. We watched another couple do it, so it obviously was possible, but we figured “oh well” we’ll do something else, less stressful, on our vacation, and live to tell about it. So we hiked back a mile to the camp and set up the tent. It was raining in this valley so we hung out in the tent the rest of the evening, except to cook food, which was super good. We were low on water too, which stunk, cuz apparently there was a pig hunt that day and they were cleaning them in or near the water somewhere up stream of us. When you went near the stream, it just smelled of iron/blood, so we didn’t really want to use it to boil and use for food. We did get some rainwater though. It seriously poured that night, and we awoke once to a cat fight outside near our pots. We think one of them stole our red spatula, which we really loved. Bummer. Needless to say, this 8 miles we hiked today kicked our butts pretty bad. We could have made it to the 11 mile camp, but whatever, ha.

Awesome view looking back at what we'd hiked. Check out the width of the trail and positioning

Don't slip

We stopped to take so many photos like this. It was never-ending photo opportunities here

So many cool flowers along the trail too!

Click on this one to check out the waterfalls up in there

Seriously, don't slip

More pretty flowers

Click on this to make it bigger and check out those waterfalls way up there. They're huge!

This photo is slanted b/c I was trying to take a panorama and it was too tall from ocean to mountaintop

Mel smiling with relief after we decided not to go on

Panorama of the sketchy section of the trail. We got about 20 yards in on the right part of the trail. The real sketchy part looked like the section down to the left around the points there.

Maher gathering rain water... we got a little bit this way, ha.