The Tale of a Beard, Four Paws and a Forest

  • The Places in Between

    The Places in Between

    *tap tap tap* … is this thing on? I feel like I should say “it’s good to be back” … but in all fairness I haven’t been away. I’ve been afield. Frequently, and in all those little places in between the places on the maps. If you know me and my wanderings outside of this…

  • Chumash XI, XII, and XIII

    Chumash XI, XII, and XIII

    Sometimes life gets in the way of things that matter … but that’s not actually the case here. In this case, life just got in the way of my drafting a report about the things that matter — namely, getting the wee ones out into the fair corners of our backcountry. And so now I…

  • Diamond in the Rough: The “Other” Yellowjacket

    Diamond in the Rough: The “Other” Yellowjacket

    It’s been a standing joke for some time ’round these parts — how there are in the toponomic scheme of things on the southern Los Padres a bevy of like-named locations. Early in this site’s life I poked fun at the numerous Sycamore Canyons, Oak Canyons, Pine this-or-that. San Rafael Mountain vs. San Rafael Peak.…

  • 11 Degrees of Service

    11 Degrees of Service

    Late last year, I stood in the back of a local elementary school cafeteria during a Cub Scout meeting. The different dens (organized by school grade, first through fifth) were taking turns telling the other Scouts and parents in attendance what their dens had been up to that past month. Trip to the fire station,…

  • The Accidental Tradition: Nordhoff Lookout

    The Accidental Tradition: Nordhoff Lookout

    Sequels seldom live up their predecessors, but I’m happy to report that trend was bucked this past October. So let me rewind a bit here. Just over a year ago, I led a crew of my intrepid Cub Scouts for a microtrash clean-up atop Nordhoff Peak, under the auspices of the US Forest Service. Condors…

  • Little Men, Big Sur

    Little Men, Big Sur

    I’d like to think over the years I’ve learnt at least a handful of the many lessons I’ve received, and so in a rare act of Labor Day weekend wisdom, instead of heading into the cauldron that is the Sespe in the summer or scaling some blistering hill along Hurricane Deck, I led the intrepid…