Sunday, March 16, 2014

Mr. Gadget goes on a Burger Run.

I've posted about several Burger Runs, and most of them end up at Hoovers, near Marysvale, southern Utah. However this one went to Panguitch, Utah, which is just a little bit more southern Utah.

Eight of us meet at the Crossroads Chevron in Lehi. We will meet two riders from Arizona, and one from Nevada in Panguitch.

This is Doug.
Doug rides a V-Strom 650.
I call Doug "Mr Gadget" can you guess why?

 Doug's a great guy!

Original plans had us meeting at Henries Burger in Panguitch. However when we arrived we found out they were closed to to the owners death a month prior.
 So we go around the corner to a pizza place. The customer service was very good, but I found my Navajo Taco barely mediocre.
The out of state riders; two Arizona guys John, and Howard (standing, middle of room), and Mike from Nevada (black shirt).

While eating, Ken (standing in the corner) tells me of a hot springs that is only slightly out of our way on the return trip. Luckily I had tossed a swimming suit in the bike before I left home.
We find the springs and have a nice soak.... and discover that not everyone in southern Utah is conservatively minded.... ;)
I did have a suit, but no towel, however it was so windy I was mostly dried off  before I got back to my bike...

The ride was windy, cold, and some freeway, but I had a good time riding with and visiting friends! 
480ish miles.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Falling boulders can ruin your day.

The map of my route;
A - Home
B - New Harmony Cemetery
C - Cedar City
D - St George (approx)
E - (transit)
F - Bryce Canyon National Park
G - St George
H - Pahrump, Nevada
I - Front Sight compound

Another trip to southern Utah is in order. I leave on a Tuesday March 4th, I need to be in New Harmony to meet the the Mayor of that town by 2:00pm to get the final OK to put a headstone on my Great-grand fathers grave.
I pass through Kanarraville on the way.
Mission accommplised, I meet the Mayor, Joel, and have a great chat. He gives the OK and helps me measure, and gives me the names and addresses of the local headstone suppliers.
Thank-you Mr Mayor!
I leave the cemetery and ride back north to Cedar City to this place.
I meet Coby who is SUPER to work with! We discuss what to put on the headstone and Coby will work up a design and email it to me in a day or two.
Back on the road to St George where I stay two nights.
The next morning I'm off on a day ride through Zion National Park, then to Bryce Canyon National Park.
On my way to Zion I pass this (former) house. A huge boulder fell off the cliff that this house was built way to close to and landed smack on the house. The two people inside were killed instantly.
On the other side of Zion I ride on highway 12 up Bryce Canyon.

....and into the Park.

It's not as warm as it looks, so I'm soon on my way back to St George...again via Zion NP
I get back to my lodging as darkness falls, and immediately make my way to the hot tub to stop my shivering. 
The next morning I'm on my way to Pahrump, Nevada where I will take a firearms training class, along with two my sons. I check into the motel, and still have enough daylight left for a ride over to Death Valley National Park.
I pass the Amargosa opera house.
 And finally make it to the park. I didn't see much in the park as I was hungry and running out of daylight.
On my way back I stop at one of my favorite eateries, the Crowbar, in the tiny town of Shoshone, California.
Back to the motel and wait for two of my sons, Jacob and Will to arrive.
 WAY to early the next day we are off for the Front Sight compound.
No...this isn't the weapon I took for the class...haha.. This was in the Crowbar Saloon.

Lots of shooting... Here are targets of "Jojo the crack head"...
 They also have an awesome rappelling set up.
One of the instructors giving pointers.
 On the 4th day we have a 'shoot off' competition in sets of two shooters.
 My relay buddy, Randy wins the competition, and gets a Front Sight coin for his efforts. Nice!
 Randy on the left, a mother and 17 year old daughter on the right.
Front Sight has several classes to build different skills. I took the 4 day class with a fifth day for Nevada concealed carry testing. Jacob and Will took the 2 day. I have to say they do a super job and I found it VERY worthwhile.
As the Declaration of Independence states, we have certain unalienable rights. One of those rights would be to defend ourselves, our families, and our freedom. I strongly believe proper observance of the 2nd Amendment is paramount to our continued freedom.
Sermon over.
 Meanwhile Gen waits patiently for me in the parking lot.
On day 5, after taking the shooting and written tests for the Nevada CCW I depart Pahrump for my return trip home. I stay over night in St George again and make the COLD super slab ride home, arriving 8 days after leaving.
1624 miles later I pull into my garage and quickly make my way to a hot shower!
If you too believe in maintaining your freedom and wonder where to get the training, contact "Front Sight" (search on google)
I think you'll find you money is well spent.
Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Family History (No Moto content)

The Whetstone Family History Tour in Southern Utah.

So I had planned to ride to this event, but Beverly changed my mind at the last minute and we both traveled in our Adventure Touring........Buick.

I've posted before about my family ties in southern Utah and this is one more installment of that theme. My Great-grandfather, Hyrum Jackson Whetstone lived there. My Grand-father, Hyrum Edward Whetstone was born there, specifically in New Harmony, Utah. They seemed to use the same names over and over.... I would have preferred my progenitors be designated; GG1, G1 etc. It would have made things so much easier for me...

Be that as it may, I had been researching my history and coerced my family into making a trip to southern Utah to follow the footsteps of our name through that time and area.

First my Great-grandfather (GG1), I'll call him Jackson. He was born in 1847 and only lived 32 years. In that time he volunteered to fight in the Civil War (between 14 and 18 years of age) was eventually taken prisoner, made an escape from a POW camp in Texas and re-joined his regiment to finish the war.

He also responded to gold fever and traveled to California where he was successful in panning a small amount of gold. On his way to look for gold in California, along with the family he was travelling with, they nearly died of dehydration. Just the four of them somewhere in the desert they ran out of water. They were so dry, tongues swollen, mouths stuck shut, they stopped and resigned themselves to die. When the family he was with laid down to meet their end, Jackson, not wanting to watch the father, mother and baby die, mounted his horse to ride away from the others. After a short ride his horse started pawing the dirt, Jackson recognized that the horse might be smelling water so he dismounted and dug a hole and indeed found moist dirt. He was able to dig deeper and the water seeped enough that he gave his horse some water then himself. He then was able to take a canteen back to his companions. He was disappointed in the other man for drinking first, then sharing with his wife. They camped at the water seep, digging down enough to re-fill their barrels of water and re-hydrating themselves so they could carry on to California.

 When Jackson returned with his gold to New Harmony, Utah. He (being young) squandered a lot of his new found wealth. But before it was all gone he realized he needed to make an investment of some sort. So he bought a couple of wagons and eight horses and started a freight hauling business. He would haul timber from the mountains to the town. On his last trip to the mountain he suddenly found his wagon and team sliding sideways....he was in a rock slide! All he had time to do was jump off to solid ground, and helplessly watch his wagon and horses slide off a cliff. Just as the team was going over the side his favorite horse looked at Jackson and whinnied which nearly broke Jackson's heart. And just like that, his investment was gone. Jackson then went to work in the mines.

While working in the mine Jackson got lead poisoning, He went to the only healthcare choice, a local doctor, for treatment. Jackson still had some of his gold and apparently the doctor knew of this because Jackson didn't seem to be getting any better (he was staying at the doctor's house during his 'treatment') and in fact was losing weight and becoming more ill.  Finally one of Jackson's friends heard he was sick and visited him at the doctors house. The friend realized what was happening and went to the doctor and said to the effect, 'that he knew the doctor was milking Jackson for his money, and that if Jackson died he (the friend) would kill the doctor!' Well, the doctor apparently believed the friend because he went straight away to the store and changed Jackson's medication and in days Jackson was better and able to leave the doctors house.

The effects of the constant exposure to lead was finally to much for Jackson and he died at 32 years of age. His death occurred six weeks before the birth of my Grand-father, Hyrum Edward Whetstone (G1).

Since my Great-grandfather (Jackson) {GG1} died six weeks before my Grandfather (Edward) {G1} they never knew each other on this earth.

I've given Edward's history on a previous blog entry here:
So I won't go over that again, however, fast forward 135 years and here is my family trip the southern Utah to learn more about our progenitors;

Our housing for the weekend.
"Please Poppy, tell me more about your childhood...."

Dinner Friday night.

Saturday morning we make our way to the banquet room for breakfast.

"Brains......gimmee brains...."

Kaybi, Jacob and I prepare the brains...I mean scrambled eggs!!

Alyssa works up an appetite...

"Thanks for breakfast Poppy."


Will helps with cleanup.
And we're off to New Harmony. We first visit the library for some research.

Then the LDS ward house where this bell is kept. This bell was on the school house for almost 100 years.
We hear the same RIIIING that Jackson, and Edward heard in their day.

Will and Ryker.
Then we visit the New Harmony Cemetery.
Soon we are on our way to Mt Carmel Junction for lunch.

We go via Zion National Park - which means we get to go through the 1.1 mile tunnel there.
We have a delicious lunch at the Thunderbird Restaurant - "Home of the Ho Made pies".
It looks like some of us had Upside Down Cake instead of Ho Made Pies....

                                    IzleyRose and Poppy.

After lunch we visit the "Old Rock Church" in Mt Carmel.
Kennedy, Jaysie, Jocelyn.

 Sunday morning we meet in one of the condos for breakfast.
The cooks....
A rare shot of Ryker in motion....

Our route, (not showing our home.) B = St George, C = New Harmony D = Mt Carmel