Colorado Trail 2016

  • 8.11 – Segment 12: Made it 6.4 miles in (230 start), passed on Antero due to late starts. Wasn’t feeling all that well, talked to Daniel about it until I could breath and pushed on. Short day, great campsite, met a couple of other segment hikers.
  • 8.12 – Finished segment 12: It was surprisingly long. Daniel was sick toward the end so we hitchhiked to Buena Vista, at in the old town restoration area, got a hotel room at Super 8, and got a ride to my car.  The restoration area of old Buena Vista is insanely cool. We ate at an expensive burger joint and turned in early. The shitty super 8 room was $150.
  • 8.13 – Segment 13: We woke up about 9 and at breakfast, did laundry. After we checked out we grabbed Daniel’s car, ate lunch and drove past the Princeton Hot Springs area and Cottonwood Hot Springs areas. We left my car at Rainbow Lake and took Daniel’s to the beginning of 13, hiked 2.5 miles and about 1500 feet to our campsite, which was amazing and had no one around. We both shed a lot of weight from our packs, I went from 34 to 26 and I can really feel the difference. We got a fire going and hung out and talked until about 10 PM. We are going to wake up early, climb Yale, and take the steep descent back to my car. We will probably head into town for food and then camp and fish down at Rainbow. Tomorrow will be a 16mile hike.
  • 8.14 – Segment 13: Woke up and climbed 1000 ft to Yale saddle. Ditched packs and began climbing Yale. It was rough going and slow. Daniel did not like how cliffed out so he turned around. I decided to continue. It got super dicey at around 12900 feet with steep loose rock. I pushed on until 13400 and then decided to turn around since the route was not looking any better. I carefully and slowly made my way off the mountain down to Daniel.  We hiked 3.3 miles back to my car which was now next to a crime scene. Apparently someone died in their truck. I saw that truck the day before and thought it looked a little off, just dusty and parked up against brush. We went to retrieve Daniel’s car and ate at Amicas pizza in Salida which was great. We bought pillows and blankets for the car camping nights, which should improve our sleep. Tomorrow we will finish 13 (we are just crawling along this year, usually average about 16-22 miles a day).
  • 8.15 – Finished segment 13:  Made quick time, met a through hiker named Bearcam from mass, hiked with him for about 8-10 miles until Princeton. Daniel and I decided to skip Princeton r&r day (since we had been hiking so little) and continue into 14 tomorrow instead. We should be camping at 12.2 miles tomorrow night. My right Achilles is starting to hurt … a lot, I think from Yale. We headed into Salida, ate at the boathouse, good food, checked out the two hostels for wed night, and headed to BV to see little shop of horrors at the drive in. That was an amazing experience. Tuned to 87.5 to listen, there were only four cars there. They said that Drive in was built in the 60s and was one of maybe 3 in the state. Had timesheet issues with Jo.
  • 8.16 – Segment 14: Slept at beginning of 14 and met two through hikers who got a ride down the two mile Princeton road Kelsey section (we actually met her a day later) and Joe, a retired pilot from Portland. We talked to him a bit on the hike and offered use of our car since it was staged at the end of 14 and since he wanted to go to Salida. We ran into Bearcam an hour or so into the hike and the three of us whizzed along. We got to our camp site and pitched at 12.2. My heal was hurting me pretty bad. Joe showed up about 30 mins later and we all sat around the fire talking. I finally had my mac and cheese and tuna … which I had been going on and on about through the day, and which … somehow … no one else had ever tried.
  • 8.17- Finished segment 14: I froze through the night (frost?!?) and woke up pissed that my heal was hurting,  so I packed up quickly to get a early start on the remaining 8+ miles. Joe also headed out early. I apparently passed him at some point of time. Eventually, all 4 of us ended up together and we cruised along until we finished 14. The four of us road in Daniels car to go pick my car up, and ate at Amicas for lunch. Joe, Daniel and I stayed at The great western. We headed to the laundry mat and ran into Kelsey again who was also doing laundry. It was funny that all five of us ended up there without planning it. That night we went to a sports bar across from Bearcam’s hotel and called it a night. We found out Kelsey was staying in the same hotel.
  • 8.18 – Salida day, and crazy tubing: Daniel and I woke up antsy to do something but my heel was still hurting. We drove to downtown Salida to hike their hill. The views were very nice from up there. On the way down we stopped by the Arkansas river and sat for a while with our feet in. It felt great. After that we decided to walk around a bit and we stumbled upon a little shop that rented inner-tubes. We asked the lady that worked there is there was any way to tube the Arkansas and she informed us that we could stage a car about 10 miles downstream, and that we should be able to reach it in “a couple of hours”. I think it was about 1:00. We went to go grab Kelsey and ask if she was interested in joining us (she is always game) and off we went. The water was pretty cold and Kelsey was in for a total of about 1o seconds before being sucked into a spillway where she flipped. Daniel also had issues with flipping. It started out fun and amazing, even though the water temp was probably in the 50’s. Eventually a storm rolled in, the outside temp dropped to the 40’s and the wind picked up. We were all freezing our asses off … like really freezing our asses off. Unfortunately the trip took much longer than we expected to, so by the time we came up on the bend where my car was staged … at 17:30 we were hyped out, like really hyped out. Everything hurt, hands didn’t work, heal somehow was still on fire … just a mess. We got in the car, drove back to town, saw that we had a worried message from the tube owner, so I dropped Daniel and Kelsey off to change and shower and headed out to meat the tube owner back at her store. Once there she told me she was sorry and that kayakers typically take a couple of hours. I bought a shirt, changed, picked up Kelsey and Daniel, and we headed to Boathouse Cantina for hot Chili and Hot Toddies.  We were all exhausted from freezing for 4+ hours so we called it a night.  This was by far the most memorable day of the trip for me.
  • 8.19 – Segment 15: We woke up relatively early, picked everyone up and staged my car at the end of Segment 15. We then crammed into Daniel’s car and drove about an hour to the beginning of 15. The hike up to the pass was beautiful and the weather was great. We all kept together and took turns at various positions (leading/trailing) and discussed just about everything. We finished the 14.3 miles pretty quickly and pitched our tents at the beginning of Segment 16, in a nice pasture (though there was a lot of horse shit). Kelsey Daniel and I figure we would get a jump on things and go ahead and stage my car at the end of 16. So we went and picked up Daniel’s car, and began our drive. We had no idea the staging trip would take about 3 hours. The end of 16 was WAY out in the sticks, requiring a 45 minute off road drive just to get to the end. We finally reached the end, found a safe place to leave Ted (Daniel’s car) and began heading back. I was worried that Bearcam and Joe were going to be worried since we were gone so long so I began hauling ass down the dirt road (which wasn’t the kind of road you haul ass on). About 10 minutes into my rally race, I blew my back tire on something and pulled over to put on my donut. The rest of the trip was much slower. We limped back to the campsite with Jo’s warm bear around midnight.
  • 8.20 – New tire, meeting the gang: I decided first thing in the morning that I needed to spend that day sorting out my tire situation. My heel was still hurting and I had no idea what I was going to do regarding the tire. My tires were about 6 weeks old, and all under warranty so I was hoping that I could just find a new one, throw it on and meet up with the gang. Since I have AWD, I really needed to get a new tire before totaling my slip differential/car (and I had already driven about 80 miles on it). I went into Salida and pulled over to clean out my car. I stopped by the hotel we had stayed at to borrow a phone and phone book (service is shit there) and began calling around. Nothing in BV, nothing in Leadville, a couple of places in Salida, though when I called them they said they did not have the replacement tire … shit. I found a place that was willing to sell me an old tire that was closer to the circumference of my new tires, though still about .75 inches off, so I could then drive about 1.5-2 hours into Pueblo to get my new tire under warranty. Needless to say this took all damn day. I finished around dinner and tried quickly to head up to meet the gang for our farewell dinner. I reached the end of segment 16 around sundown, and everyone was hunkered down in their tents to avoid cold rain/drizzle/hail (I think elevation was around 11,500 feet). I showed up, got out firewood, got a fire going, broke out hotdogs and beer, and we had our final dinner. I slept in the car, woke up early to say goodbye to everyone, and then was on my way back to one last Salida meal with Daniel. This part of the trail had the best primitive toilet I had ever seen on a trail.

Say hello

Say hello to the rugs topography
It holds quite a lot of interest with your face down on it
Say hello to the shrinking in your head
You can’t see it but you’ll know it’s there so don’t neglect it

I’m taking her home with me
All dressed in white
She’s got everything I need
Pharmacy keys
She’s fallen hard for me
I can see it in her eyes
She acts just like a nurse
With all the other guys

Say hello to all the apples on the ground
They were once in your eyes but you sneezed them out while sleeping
Say hello to everything you’ve left behind
It’s even more a part of your life now that you can’t touch it

I’m taking her home with me
All dressed in white
She’s got everything I need
Some pills in a little cup
She’s fallen hard for me
I can see it in her eyes
She acts just like a nurse
With all the other guys

She’s got everything I need
Pharmacy keys
She acts just like a nurse
With all the other guys

Say hello to the rugs topography

Yellow ostriches love October

An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.

In the high country of mind one has to become adjusted to the thinner air of uncertainty.

Wilderness is not luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread.

Freedom is something that dies unless it is used.

Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things can not be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.

What is a Ghost?

What is a ghost? A tragedy condemned to repeat itself time and again? An instant of pain, perhaps. Something dead which still seems to be alive. An emotion suspended in time. Like a blurred photograph. Like an insect trapped in amber. A ghost is me.

@#@#$@$ iTunes

Why is this so hard
Adding contents to iPod
Eat my ass iTunes

Who broke wind?

BUCKETS!

jimBakkerPrayer Jim Bakker being the sweet, Christian dude he is, who in no way is interested in your money and who only wants to make sure you are prepared for the rapture by offering his $2000+ food buckets, is willing to answer and potentially publish your prayer requests (https://jimbakkershow.com/prayer-center/prayer-request-form/). This has become my new hobby.

First win of the season

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We love you and will miss you

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Hitomi: you spin me right round baby right round

From Spaceflight101 (http://spaceflight101.com/h-iia-astro-h/hitomi-failure-chain/)

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Image: JAXA/Akihiro Ikeshita

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency pieced together a rough timeline of the events sending the agency’s Hitomi spacecraft into an uncontrolled tumble, causing the spacecraft to break up in late March. Analysis of available telemetry data suggests a chain of errors led to the 2,700-Kilogram spacecraft entering a tumble when using invalid attitude data and operating its thrusters according to improper settings.

Hitomi, launched back on February 17, ran into severe trouble on Saturday, March 26 when it failed to check in with a ground station during a scheduled communications pass. Five debris objects separated from the spacecraft were tracked in orbit and calculations by the Joint Space Operations Center showed they were liberated from Hitomi around 1:42 UTC +/-11 minutes, indicting a very serious onboard anomaly had transpired. Beacon signals were received from the spacecraft three times until March 28, but Hitomi has fallen silent since then.

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Image:JAXA/ISAS

Because of a lack of telemetry data after the event, JAXA faced a difficult task when attempting to pin-point what happened to the Hitomi X-Ray Observatory. In a press briefing on Friday, a scenario of events was presented explaining Hitomi’s current state.

The spacecraft finished a re-orientation maneuver at 18:22 UTC on March 25, slewing from observing an Active Galactic Nucleus to the next target. Immediately after the re-orientation, Hitomi’s Inertial Reference Unit (IRU) observed a non-existent roll rate around the spacecraft’s Z-axis. Typically, a sudden increase in IRU error is canceled out over time as a result of the time integration algorithm used by the IRU attitude determination scheme. Also, when a persistent difference between IRU and Star Tracker data is seen, the spacecraft controller is programmed to automatically supersede the faulty IRU data and use the more precise Star Tracker data. This did not occur in this particular case because no Star Tracker data was being captured.

Only relying on the erroneous IRU data which drifted to sensing a 21.7 degree-per-hour roll, Hitomi’s flight control system started countering the non-existent roll by using the spacecraft’s reaction wheels. The induced torque led to an actual roll rate building up opposite to that sensed by the faulty IRU. JAXA estimates the event occurred around 19:10 UTC on March 25 and Hitomi entered a roll of around 20°/hour.

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Hitomi Attitude Determination & Control System – Image JAXA/ISAS

As momentum started building up on the Reaction Wheels, the magnetic torquers of the spacecraft began to attempt to dump momentum, but the system was not effective at the body rates of the spacecraft. From 20:49 to 01:04 UTC, momentum on the Reaction Wheels continued building up until the system was near saturation at a momentum of 112Nms (vs a 120Nms limit).

When the wheels were close to saturation and the IRU was still showing a large roll rate, Hitomi automatically switched to Safe Mode in which the vehicle is programmed to use its Sun Sensor to determine the solar vector and then correct its attitude using the thruster system in order to point the solar arrays to the sun for power generation.

However, acquisition of the sun did not work as programmed and the thrusters started firing, increasing the rotation on the spacecraft. According to JAXA, thruster settings were updated after the February 28 deployment of the Extensible Optical Bench. After this deployment was completed, issues arose when attempting to acquire the sun using the Sun Sensor.

In addition, the deployment of the optical bench changed the center of mass characteristics of the spacecraft which required thruster algorithms to be updated. JAXA concludes that the new thruster settings were not appropriate and in the end resulted in accelerating the roll rate on the spacecraft.

With the roll rate accelerating dramatically, JAXA estimates that multiple objects were released by the Hitomi spacecraft around 1:37 UTC on March 26. The current suspicion is that the liberated debris pieces include the Extensible Optical Bench and the outer portions of the solar panels.

Brief signals were received from Hitomi on three occasions until March 28, but since then, the spacecraft has fallen completely silent – likely due to the depletion of its onboard battery as no power is generated with the vehicle in a fast spin. Optical and radar observations from the ground indicate that the roll rate on the spacecraft increased since the debris event occurred.

The scenario outlined by JAXA highlights a series of onboard failures leading to Hitomi ending up in a deathly tumble through space. Trouble first emerged when the Star Trackers were unable to deliver the data needed for the correction of a large bias in IRU data. The IRU’s time integration caused the expected drift of the error to smaller values, but the erroneous roll reading stalled at 21.7°/h leading to the spacecraft inducing an actual roll when attempting to correct the non-existent roll reading.

Hitomi’s fate was sealed when the spacecraft Safe Mode kicked in an operated the vehicle’s 3-Newton thrusters according to settings that were not compatible with the present spacecraft configuration, further accelerating the roll and causing pieces to be slung from the spacecraft. An investigation is underway looking at the thruster settings updated after the optical bench was deployed.

For Hitomi, the outlook remains rather bleak as the vehicle is likely missing a significant part of its power-generation ability and remains in a tumble through space. JAXA said earlier a recovery, if at all possible, would take at least several months, but in light of these latest insights it seems unlikely that the mission can be salvaged.

Hitomi was outfitted with two pairs of X-Ray telescopes to complete simultaneous acquisition of spectra and imagery in the Soft and Hard X-Ray regime along with a Gamma-Ray Detector to cover the highest particle energies.

The Hitomi mission was expected to deliver breakthrough results in a diverse area of science, ranging from the large-scale structure of the universe and its evolution to the behavior of matter in strong gravitational fields, the physical conditions at sites of cosmic-ray acceleration, and the study of dark matter in galaxy clusters. The X-ray range of the electromagnetic spectrum is suitable for probing extreme environments in the universe like areas near black holes or neutron stars, high-temperature gas and zones of electron acceleration. Observing galaxy clusters and revealing their historical evolution will lead to an improved understanding of how the largest structures in the universe form and evolve.




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