Thursday, August 30, 2012

Backgrounds and GRE Prep (Two Things Entirely Unrelated)

I've had the same background on my blog... forever. Or what seems forever. I put it together in photoshop, spent hours laboring over exactly what I wanted and I love it. But I think I'm ready for a change. Only problem is I can't find something I like better.

So I will continue hunting down blog backgrounds until I find something I want to use. Or maybe I'll re-vamp it entirely. This being said, my blog might be in a state of flux! But keep reading and whatnot and I'll keep posting. And editing backgrounds and headers.

Oh. I also order some GRE prep books today. If I ever want to go to grad school I should take the GRE now, while I still remember things. Before I completely forget everything. Like how to write complete sentences. Oh wait. This is always how I write my blog. So, hopefully they will come in the mail sometime and I can start studying!

And thanks to my sister Heidi for helping me decide what books to order off Amazon!

Update: Totally in love with the new look of my blog. I realize it's simple, but it's great. Oh and if you are looking for books to study for the GRE I recommend 'Cracking the GRE, 2013 Edition' by the Princeton Review.  I also recommend taking a look at Barron's 'New GRE.'   Don't bother getting the book published by ETS... they provide the same practice tests that are in the book online (for free!).

Friday, August 24, 2012

Hells Canyon Jet Boat Tour

Here at Cornucopia Lodge we are always sending customers down to go on a jet boat tour with Hells Canyon Adventures. Today I decided that mom, dad and I should really go on the tour. Thankfully we didn't have anyone booked at the lodge... so we went!

We ended up going on the 6 hour tour, which takes you 57 miles round trip.  The whole thing started off next to the Hells Canyon Dam.  From the dam we boarded the boat then began down the Snake. Side fact: Hells Canyon is more than 125 miles long of which 40 miles is over a mile deep. It reaches a depth of 7900 ft. The maximum depth of the the Grand Canyon is 6000 vertical feet. This makes Hells Canyon the deepest canyon in North America by 1900 feet! 
A view from the back of the boat looking
 at Hells Canyon
The Kirkwood tour was really exciting because we got to experience everything from a class one rapid to a class four. I didn't think I was going to like it first, but it turned out to be really awesome!  I was also super thrilled because we got to see a cute little baby bear cub, had two separate sightings of big horn sheep, saw some chuckers, and of course got to enjoy the amazing scenery. 

Our lunch stop was great because I'm not used to such a 'gourmet' lunch out in the middle of nowhere. I guess we can't make a super fancy lunch and take it with us on horseback for day rides. We even got brownies for dessert! Speaking of our lunch stop, we stopped at the historic Kirkwood ranch for lunch. I can't imagine living in Hells Canyon and trying to ranch. Well, actually I can image it. It would be a neat place to live. 
Dad & I on the jet boat
Mom on the jet boat
Once lunch was finished we headed back up the river to face the rapids we had previously come down. It was really fun until we hit the class four rapids. Normally the guide takes the boat up, looks for on-coming traffic, then roars through the rapids. However, there was some floaters in the way. Problem was that they weren't coming down the rapid or moving out of the way. After wasting some time, and fuel, our guide finally decided to go for it.  I don't know if it was frustration or low water levels, but we went crashing into a rock!  Everyone was ok, except one lady who ended up with a goose-egg on her head.  Sure makes for a good story though! Our guide said that is the first time he has ever hit a rock in the river.  I blame the floaters.

You'll have to watch the video that is below. I got some great footage of the river with my GoPro!
Hint: After hitting the play button you can click on the gear and it will say settings... change that to 720pHD for improved video quality! 

 Here's the video for you!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Home for a Day or Two

It seems like I haven't updated my blog very often, which is true, because I've been really busy and tired. However, I though I'd take the time do run some updates past you folks.

First, days off are far too in-between. But I'm glad that I finally have a day or two at home. Yesterday I drove home and did some 'chores' like washing my laundry, washing and vacuuming out my truck, grabbing the mail, and buying some ice-cream and a froze pizza. Yes. I still eat like a college kid when I can!  It was great to spend the rest of the evening zoning-out in front of the t.v. and relaxing some with a pizza and ice-cream.

This morning I went outside and rode Lance. What a sweetheart he is! I just laying on him for hours and watching the clouds roll by.  I wish that he wasn't so old, but I'm glad that he is still around for me to love on!

Lance. 27 and still going strong!
I also saw a hawk sitting on the tree branch in the back pasture. He was so majestic looking. I just wish I had gotten a great picture of him so I could show you.

After lunch, I grabbed a trailer and headed over to Mary's house to go horse riding. (Mary is a great friend from high school!) It was fun to get out and go riding with a friend and I'm glad that I can to spend time with a friend. It was a much needed break from the routine I've fallen into. Plus, we caught up on chit chat and had a great time working the horses up by Moss Springs!

ADD ON: I forgot to mention the huge spider that was in the trailer! Seriously... it was massive! And pretty disgusting looking. Maybe a cat spider? Ugh. I can't believe we had to untie the horses next to that thing! Yuck!

A quick trip to Wal-Mart then Wells-Fargo ended the day. It's back to sitting in front the the t.v. and watching some shows before bed. Life is pretty good right now. Thats for sure.

In case you want some more updates... keep reading!

Horse Camp has ended and that season is over. In one way it's a relief. In another way, it's completely scary. Now what do I do? Typically I would be heading off to college right about now. But since I graduated this is a whole new ball park. It should be interesting. 

Toby (Quin) and WindDancer with the Cornucopia Mountains

Last weekend we held the 5th Annual Poker Ride. I guess the best way to describe the Poker Ride is a horse ride where at starting, stopping, and mid-way points you draw a poker card. It's a five card stud, meaning that at the end whoever has the best poker hand wins. It is a beautiful ride and it was neat to meet different people. This year we didn't have as many people as we usually do, so it wasn't too stressful on my end.

Looking out at Clear Creek Reservoir

Clear Creek Reservoir

Beautiful Photo!
I'll end with two great quotes: 'Talking to your Best Friend is sometimes all the therapy you need.' (And my best friend is my horse!)  'Love comes in all shapes and forms, but the love of an animal is the purest. ♥'

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Last Chance Mine

At the beginning of the week I decided to take the horse camp girls (and counselors) on a little adventure to the Last Chance Mine.  This mine is located on, basically, the side of a mountain.  The road up to the mine is fairly steep and somewhat challenging, but I still love going up there. Part of the reason is because of the history that surrounds the Last Chance in Cornucopia. From what I've understood the Last Chance Mine was discovered on June 10, 1885 by John Carey and E. P. Howard.
Last Chance Mine (Note how the buildings sit in "levels.")

Local history sites state that, "A steep and narrow road to the Last Chance was carved out of sheer cliffs by hand labor and blasting before the turn of the century. When the road was finished it was used to bring in lumber to build mine buildings that were designed around a narrow out-cropping so that winter snows, ranging up to twenty feet deep, could slide off re-enforced roofs on either side ("

In several history books and on different websites there is a notable picture that shows a four-mule team heading down the Last Chance Mine Road (taken in 1915). Interestingly enough, that tree is still there. Incredible, no? So, with a little help from Photoshop, I created this side by side comparison. The photo with the wagon team is circa 1915 and the photo on the right was taken on July 30, 2012. 

After passing by this tree the road to the last chance is essentially gone. It now resembles a game path on the side of a cliff.  Thankfully, I have been out to the mine before and didn't have a problem finding my way back.

It was fun to spend time out there and I got some great photos!

Scout and I on top of the Last Chance tailings pile.

Collapsed Lawrence Tunnel: Portal Elevation 6,910 ft.

Collapsed building.
Bed Springs at the Last Chance Mine
Artifacts found at the Last Chance Mine. Some included
doorknobs, utensils, files, and stove parts.
Indian Paint Brush grown over old mine cart tracks.