Road trip to La Push Washington on the Olympic Peninsula

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La Push map

Click for Google Map

I thought I would share some sensory from my trip to the Olympic Peninsula. It was in June to celebrate my oldest sons Bryce’s Birthday.We started by talking the Edmonds Kingston Ferry

over to the Olympic Peninsula. Once across we would take State Highway 307 turning on 104 north. We followed 104 north till we hit Interstate 101. Follow 101 around the top of the Peninsula to the Pacific Ocean.

I love this drive. Here is a music video I created out of the GoPro footage on the Jeep. It was really my Teardrop campers first real outing. I am very please on how it has trended out. Few more tweaks and I think I will have it setup they way I want.

We camped in a camp ground out side of Forks Wa Called More Campground. Great place to stay but can be sold out in the Summer. You may now that is vampire country. Its the setting for the Twilight series. If you are a fan this place is a must.

If you do make it over to the further most tip of Washington state there are some fantastic beaches, parks and viewpoint. I recommend taking a several days and driving around the loop. You have to see the rain forest. For sure explore the Olympic National Park.  I love this resource by the National Parks Conservation Association.

La Push - Cave island

La Push – Cave island

We defiantly found lots cool places to hang out and explore. La Push beach is one of my favorite beaches in the Pacific. We spent some time there. I love photography and there was lots of birds including one of my favorite to photograph is the Bald Eagle. I was able to get nice on close to one for some great photos.

American Bald Eagle

American Bald Eagle

It was a great place to watch birds, boats and people. Lots of sand to play on. We watched the Coast Gard guys towing in a fishing vessel it seemed to almost get away from them at one point.

 

 

In-between the camp ground and La Push we found a great little place on the river to kayak, cool down in the water and have lunch.

 

 

I would have liked to have spent more time on the Peninsula but it was just a weekend get-a-way. We’ll have to get back out there soon.

Happy travels!

~mojo

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Learning has gone to the Birds

eagleSince I was a kid I have been into birds. When I was about 12 my family lived on a small farm in central Washington. A friend of the family gave me some Pigeons. It was a great experiance for me taking care of them and learning about them. I could put them in a crate and take them anywhere to release them and they would be at home waiting when I got back. These birds where amazing creatures. I dreamed of learning how to raise falcons or hawks. I really developed a love for all birds. These days I love shooting photos of them and look for opportunities to do so. I love that I can mix two of my passions together photography and birds.

As a family we regularly vacation in Central Oregon. One of our favorite activities is going to the Nature Center. The have some amazing birds there, some of which they are rehabilitating. On one visit staff Naturalist Cody Osborn used an iPad to assist in his presentation and nature walk outside the center. He used a really cool app called iBird. The app is fantastic for identifying birds. It is a rich multimedia app. IMG_3740-150x150One of my favorite features is the ability to upload photos I have taken into the app. I can then play a slideshow and the app will cycle through the photo I have taken and play the corresponding bird songs with my photo. I think that is pretty awesome! The app has a tremendous amount of information about birds. I can see the value of this as not only a tool for in the field as they used it at the Sunriver Nature Center but also as a great tool for the classroom. Even better if the students can use the app as a foundational tool inside then move outside and further explore in the field.

Ijay spent this past Memorial Day weekend at my in-laws cabin as we normally do. One of the   simple little fun traditions in putting peanuts out for the Jays. We put them just outside on the deck so we can sit watch them swoop down and grab them. It is fun to watch. My dog Toby can do this all day!This time I happen to have my Canon XA10 with my so I strategically set in out with the peanuts just in front of it. I hope you enjoy the footage as much as I do.

 

 

Wearable action cam serves up 4K video at 25fps

panasonicThis is pretty amazing 4k video wearable cam.  I love my GoPro its a fantastic and fun camera. Although I have to admit I really haven’t seen it much since I got it I brought it home and my boys have been using it ever since. They have done a ton of projects with it I really don’t mind because they’ve done a fantastic job of documenting our adventures.  It’s amazing how much fun you can have with a mountable camera. We’ve purchased all sorts of attachments and mounts and that’s part of the fun. Check out this video that Evan made about some of our four-wheel-drive adventures.  I think our next purchase will be a drone I’ve been looking at them they’re fairly inexpensive.

 

 

Here is the article on the 4k wearable video camera

Panasonic’s HX-A500 wearable action cam serves up 4K video at 25fps.

Self Directed Learning on The Fly

The Kalama River with my Dad, Bother and my friend Steve

The Kalama River with my Dad, Bother and my friend Steve

I have been a Fly Fisherman for several years now. I hesitate to say I am self taught but you could say my learning was self directed. I used a combination of informal, social, short format content and good research or reference. Now I know this method is not something all that special or even new. I do believe that there are a lot more resources available to us today that make this method much easier. I would like to offer my approach and technique as an example of how someone can learn any new skill. These techniques will work for professional development within an organization as well as for personal interest skills development. The keys for success are first identifying the skills you want to learn, set some goals and structure to keep you on track and to assure you are moving forward.

I recently discovered that I had a Hernia and needed to have surgery. Ouch! I pause for a short pity party. 😉 The main point here is that I knew I would have some down time. This is something I am normally not too good at. I knew I needed to plan something to do so I would not go stir crazy or even worse drive my family crazy. I was looking at several days of very minimal activity then light activity as I could handle but no working out for about a month. Basically I would be putzing around the house days for weeks. That said, I am not a big TV person. I do like movies but I usually can’t even make it through most movies without having to go to the kitchen or something. I am just not great at passive entertainment, I need to be doing something. I decided that this would be a good time to start learning to tie my own flies.

Where to start? Where else? For me most things start with a Google search. Research is the most important step in self directed learning. You know the old saying you don’t know what you don’t know. You need to build a foundation of understanding so you can put together plan. Fist I would need to know what equipment is needed. I found several Fly Tying kits. By looking at the kits I knew what the basic tools I would need. Further research on YouTube would give me some reviews on the tools and how to use them. There where lots of places to buy online but I decided that finding someone at local Fly Fishing shop to help me make the right purchases would be more valuable than saving a few dollars.

I jumped in the Jeep and headed down to my favorite local fly show Pacific Fly Fishers. I asked owner Michael Bennett help me pick out the basic tools I needed to get started. I then asked him to help me choose two of the most common flies that would work well for the areas I like to fish and the materials I would need to tie them.

My Workstation with Fly Tying setup

My Workstation with Fly Tying setup

My next step was to get my brain around some of the basic techniques so I went on a YouTube marathon. There are many videos on how to use the tools and the various techniques to uses them. I then picked some common flies I have used and watched those videos. I must have watched dozens of them before I tried any myself. I also had been given a book several years back call Beginner’s Guide to Fly-tying and I also spent a great deal of time piling through it.

Ok I was ready to take the plunge. I decided it was time to tye my first fly. I choose the Black Wooly Bugger. It is a fly I have fished many a times so I was excited to have an endless supply. The YouTube video below walked be through the steps to tying the fly and because I had spent so much time researching and studying other videos it was a breeze. I have since then tied several of the same flies and each time I tie it the fly looks better.

In summery I think this is the new model for learning. Even formal education can borrow form this approach. Especially when you consider the flipped classroom. The amount of information and instructional content that is available to us these days I unbelievable. There are so many things I have turned to YouTube videos to learn how to do. From fixing something around the house, installing a part on my Jeep or learning a new software. Now just don’t take my word for it. If you are like most people there is something that you have always wanted to know how to do. Go ahead, do it! Take advantage of the resources available to you and learn that new skill.

Steps:

  • Research
  • Talk to people who have the skill
  • Understand and get the tools needed
  • Review demonstrations
  • Follow step by step videos/instructions
  • Repeat or practice, practice, practice
  • Get feedback and test