Thanksgiving 2017

It was sunny and cool in the mountains this weekend. Minus 2C at night with a frost on the car in the morning. It never really warmed up enough during the day to go without a fleece. 

On Thursday I headed to Gorges State Park again. I was determined to get passed the muddy hill I bottled out on last time. Unfortunately, just as I got to it I ran into a different obstacle and had to turn around again. 

I went for lunch instead. Cheese, onion and tomato hoagie with honey Dijon mustard, and salt and vinegar chips. Pineapple soda and a banana. That’s a Morakniv stuck in the table. Very cool Swedish-made bushcraft knives. 

Here’s the setup inside the Jeep. Garmin sat nav on road, Gaia sat nav off road and Sirius sat radio for on and off road. That’s a CB radio over the mirror.

On Friday morning I drove up to Table Rock. It was 13 miles of gravel road with some fantastic scenery.

In the afternoon, I traveled over to Cataloochee Valley to check in on the elk. It’s rutting season.  As two of the stags were having a stare down one of their ladies was checking me out.

I was late leaving the valley and took the back roads out. The sun set very quickly leaving me to drive 20 miles up and down the sides of the mountains in the dark. I was glad of the aftermarket LED headlights and floods. 

Back in Business

I’m back in business. I bought a new vehicle in the US for wheeling. Blew the warranty after a week by getting a serious amount of “under the hood” modifications to it. The photos here are from two outings. The first to Gorges State Park on my own and the second to Pisgah National Forest with six others. 

I’ve started using the Gaia GPS app on an iPad Pro to record my track on topographical maps. It serves two purposes - keeps a record of where I’ve been and let’s me find my way back out if I get lost. The iPad has a GPS receiver and cellular service.  Since I took the shot below I have fitted a proper mount so I can see it while driving. 

A few years ago I got lost hiking in Utah. I was alone and it took me three hours to find my way back to my car. Since then I take extra precautions when I’m wheeling on my own. Tools, winch, first aid kit, solar power charger, handheld GPS receiver, emergency kit, bear spray etc all reside permanently in or on the vehicle. 

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