Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Jasper versus Bullwinkle

Yesterday Jasper and I went up the mountain behind our house to play a round of tennis ball fetch. After catching the first throw, Jasper decided he had better ideas than to bring the ball back. He saw a pair of moose on the hill and without hesitation, took off chasing the bull. He gave it a good run up the mountain before deciding to come back to me. He was quite lucky the moose didn't take a more aggressive posture. Perhaps he was just surprised at the 53 pound missile that was streaking towards him.

This morning we took a much more peaceful approach and I brought my camera (with 640mm of lens). After playing fetch for a bit, he started staring into the woods. I got him to sit and sure enough, out comes the bull. He was directly into the early morning sun, so pictures would have been terrible. We walked around him. A long ways around him and came up from the other side. This time Jasper was very quiet and calm. He sat at my side for about 15 minutes as I took some pictures. The moose was interested, but not terribly concerned. The female moose was somewhere in the trees ahead. We could hear her, but never saw her.

The moose is probably only two years old, and not that big for a bull. However, he would be very large for a cow, horse or car.

The first snow of the winter? fall? summer?

Monday, Sept 24th brought Park City's first snow of the fall. It dropped a few inches and most was melted off by Tuesday afternoon. It was quite pretty though, especially with the fall foliage.

Looking out at Jupiter Peak.

... and of course, another year of Where's Waldog?

Building the deck

This was from last week. They brought out the railings for the deck. The bulk of it was in 3 very large, completely welded sections. No way humans could get it up on the deck. They brought out a crane, which this time managed to stay upright. When they actually finish the deck and attach all the railings, I'll snap another shot. It's quite pretty.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Golfing in Utah

I went out with a friend (Bill Benson) to play a round of golf over in Midway. First, the scenery was beautiful. The trees aren't quite at their peak, but they have lots of color. Fall is coming quickly.

Momma Deer and her babies were having snack time out on the course.

On another hole, a herd/gaggle/group/flock of wild turkeys were chill'n. There were about a dozen of them and they were as casual as the deer.

Nice weather. Nice scenery. Nice wildlife. Medium golf. Shot a 92.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

We can send the finish line, but it is far off

Lots starting to happen at the house. The people who do the pavers were busy this week grading out the driveway so the it forms the base for the pavers. Tons of gravel. Tons of hard work. Now the radiant heat guys are starting to lay the tubing. It should take them two or three days and then the pavers start going down.

The big news is that the painters have finished everything but a bit of touch-up upstairs. They have pealed off all the plastic and masking. Now all the other trades can come in and start working upstairs. Should be a busy week. This is an awkward look up at the ceiling. You can see the big beams have been stained and the ceiling is painted.

This is my office. The color looks a bit odd, but it is really the base coat for some faux painting that will be done.

Meanwhile, downstairs is looking much closer to finished. The shelving is in the closets and the carpet is down.

Here is a little better picture of the carpet.

This week we are looking for some progress on electrical, plumbing, the deck, and the driveway.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Hiking at Park City

In my never ending quest to empty the dog's energy reserves, I have found a tough, but nice hike up in the Park City Ski Resort. It goes up to the top of a major ridge, at 8700 feet. The resort actually goes up to almost 10,000, but that would be a good bit more involved for hiking.

This is a view looking across the valley at our subdivision: April Mountain. If you double click on the picture, you can see a larger, more detailed version.

One of the most interesting things on the hike was the mix of colors. We have an extremely short growing season up here and I think that results in some cycle-compression. Here are some trees that are getting the jump on changing colors. We are still probably two weeks or more from the peak.

This picture was taken from the exact same spot, looking the other direction. It was a field of pretty purple wildflowers.

This doesn't show how pretty things really were, but up near the top was a huge field of yellow and purple.

...and down near the base, an entire drainage ditch was full of yellow flowers as far as you can see.

The mix of early fall foliage and late blooming wildflowers makes for a nice distraction as we slog up the mountainside!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Want to buy a condo?

Our condo in Park City is now officially on the market. It is listed on MLS and we had a very successful realtor open house (70 of them came). If you want to see the details, click here.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Touring the Northwest - San Juan Island

The last two days of our trip were out on San Juan Island. This is the largest of a chain of islands, ranging from tiny (an acre?) to large (12x20 miles). This island has about 7000 permanent residents and that can double during the peak season. I compare this to Park City, which goes from 8,000 to 40,000 during Sundance.

To see the island you can drive a car (which we didn't have), bike (which we didn't have enough time for) or moped. We chose to moped. The place we rented them from had normal little mopeds and then these odd, two-person things. We did a test fit for size and I would have been wrapped up a bit too tight. We went with the normal mopeds.

One of the sights to go see is a lavender farm. The people running it are big into eco farming and use almost no irrigation or fertilizer. The lavender is used in lots of different products, all of which smell wonderful. We were lucky to be there when everything was blooming.

One morning we woke to a very heavy fog. I enjoyed walking along the docks in the marina and shooting some pictures. The sailboats were almost eerie.

The fog also coated a few spider webs I found. The looked like they were made with strands of tiny pearls.

As the fog lifted from the harbor, it was interesting to watch the ferries emerge from the fog that was still heavy out in the channel. You could hear the fog horns long before you could ever see anything.

The big thing to go do is to see the Orcas (Killer Whales). There are three resident pods totaling about 80 whales. We had a nice afternoon to go hunt for them and quickly discovered a pod. The only downside as a photographer is that the boats are supposed to stay 100 yards away from any whale. As you can see in the picture below, sometimes the whales don't follow the rules and wander right over near a boat.

A mom and her baby swimming together, with a hazy Mt Baker in the background.

In addition to the orcas, we saw a Bald Eagle, seals, a huge sea lion (10-12 feet) and porpoise. This little island was covered with cormorants, except right down at the shore line, which was layered with Harbor Seals.

All in all, a MOST excellent trip!