Friday, January 29, 2010

More Preparation on The Cruise

After many hours of going through the charts and picking marinas and way points, I found myself confused about which Dams were on which river, the names of the lakes and which dam they belonged, and where was the marina I had planned to stay below the Lower Granite Dam. Even though I had made spreadsheets, I was missing the big picture.

Yes, that was it! I needed a picture to overview the trip. I took 2 sheets of 8x10 paper and drew out the Snake and Columbia Rivers. Then I marked all the dams, all the lakes, and all the marinas and included the river mile markers. Now I have 2 pieces of paper with all the info I need. How sweet is that? This will be a big help for me, as well as my crew.

If that was not enough, I went on Google Earth and labeled all the Dams and Marinas. It will be good to see what the river actually looks like as we plan for each day. Some of the photos are spectacular. I feel really good about the route now, with its capsulated format. There is nothing like a picture being worth a thousand words.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Checking on Shatoosh

Wednesday and Thursday 27,28 Jan 2010:

My first trip to see the boats in this new year, my stuffing box had leaked too much, but not enough to turn the bilge pump on. This arrangement of float valve placement is not adequate for the deep bilge slot. A lot of water can come in before the pump is activated. I have never liked the situation, but there are few solutions. The water backs up into the main cabin, but for some strange reason that I have never been able to track, the water does not retreat from the cabin sub flooring area even though there is drain pipe going under the engine compartment bed.
After that mess was cleaned up and the heater placed to dry the area, I tighten the stuffing box.

My next mission is to check out the anchor light. This seems simple, but to my dismay, I am not able to open the light casing to see what kind of bulb it is. I return to the cabin, find the anchor light and brand in an old catalog, go on line and email the company to ask for instructions to open the fixture or if they can tell me about the bulb. I want to see if this is replaceable with an LED light. I also find it interesting that there are few, if any anchor lights available in the listings of several manufacturers. Has the boating community stopped anchoring?

On my way home I stopped off at the Hawaiian Island Cafe in ST. Helens, OR to have some lunch, and to donate a new Waikiki Yacht Club Burgee for their flag collection. They were happy to get it and hopefully it will be hanging on my next visit.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Planning Snake River and Upper Columbia River Trip

The day is grey, rain free and the temperature mild. I have already roughed in my tax preparation, so spend the afternoon looking at charts and planning my summer trip.
There is lots to do, think about and prep the boats for their journey up country to Idaho.

My mind drifts back to the Delta, where my buddies Conrad and Juanita begin prepping me for my Columbia River journeys. I have so much to be grateful to them for; all the fun we had in the Delta and for their encouragement for me to truck Shatoosh to explore the Columbia. I, unfortunately, have lost track of them and not a month goes by that they appear in my consciousness, as though they are knowingly watching over me. I would love to make contact with them and share all my adventures with them.

Conrad, carved a sweet replica of Shatoosh which rides atop my depth sounder, and which will lead the way downriver on this next epic adventure I am planning. At that time, 2002, I began making spread sheets, trying to keep track of the 8 locks/dams and the distances between them, where diesel could be obtained, ice could be bought, availability of marinas, and pump out stations.
I've kept them nice and dry in my chart portfolio.
I settle down in my condo loft, laying out all my papers, books and charts on my long art table.
I will begin my trip at the Snake River in Idaho/Washington border. The Snake river has 4 dams/locks which we will traverse. The river is 140 miles long. The Columbia river has 4 dams/locks and is 225 miles from Portland to the mouth of the Snake. A total of 365 miles.
I'm still contemplating and weighing all my transport options: commercial trucking versus renting a trailer and using friends to do the hauling. I will make my decision soon. The other option which I decided long ago not to do, was cruising up and then back down. If it weren't for all the locks and big currents to go through I'd probably do it. One early summer I tried to get Shatoosh from Beacon Rock which is below the Bonneville Dam up to the dam just to check it out and the current stalled me to making 1 knot. I rapidly turned downriver and was clocking 12k.
I've made good headway this afternoon and selected marinas to stay. I'm figuring on 2 weeks to come down river. This will give me some extra time to poke my bow up the John Day River and give Pashmina some exploring time.
At the completion of this journey I will have cruised all the navigable rivers on the West Coast.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Hira Creates a New Blog

I am mentioning this to all you fellow boaters and arm chair cruisers that have been so faithful in keeping up with the Adventures of Shatoosh and Pashmina. I started a new blog today which is totally not related to boating, but it totally related to other aspects of my life.

Reiki is based on the Usui System of Natural Healing and has been an integral aspect of my being for 25 years now. You might be surprised that I have been known to Reiki my engine, my computer, myself or a friend in need. I have witnessed many a miracle with Reiki and watched how Reiki supports a person in their death process. Reiki is one of the pillars of my foundation; it supports me and nutures me.

Please take a look at my new blog:
I have 2 entries from my recent trips into Anapra, Mexico to the Proyecto Los Ninos Clinic for handicapped children and an entry about a recent interview I did with Reiki Lineage Bearer Phyllis Furumoto on Reiki Talk Show entitled Spiritual Lineage.

It will be fun for me to see how it develops as I am always amazed how The Adventures of Shatoosh and Pashmina has effected people.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Home At Last

From the thirsty Banks of the Rio Grande to the Shores of Lake Tahoe: My trips were fun and eventful, but I am happy to be home. I made my way to West marine in search of a LED Anchor light. I'll need to check out my anchor light fitting on Shatoosh before I can purchase anything.
Shatoosh and Pashmina seemed to gather several boating items while I was away; 3 books, voltmeter, rachet set, and $100.00 in donations. Thank you Jean, Denise, Dan and the Dollarhides for bellying up to the plate. We will enjoy all of the above.
I'm looking at the weather report for Scappoose, Oregon for a clearing so I can go down to check out the boats.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy Holidays 2009/2010

Its 2 January 2010 and I am still in the southern desert of the United States, overlooking the thirsty Rio Grande River in El Paso, Texas.
I'm celebrating my holidays with my twin sister Jean, who is 90 seconds older than me.

This is the beach from which all our boating began. Our parents liked to fish, so we were hauled all over Texas, New Mexico and Mexico to fish. Jean and I learned early on to run the outboard motor and our parents would let us cruise on our own, as they fished from the shore. Little did they know they were launching our many boating aspirations.


We have been on the go, criss-crossing the river, criss-crossing the southern states of New Mexico and Arizona to bird watch at the Bosque del Apache Wildlife Refuge and see friends, attend Mass at the beautiful San Xavier de Bac Mission outside of Tucson and to attend a Reiki gathering at the Proyecto de Santo Nino in Anapra Mexico, where Jean initiates the mothers of severely handicapped children in Reiki. Reiki is a healing art from the Usui Lineage coming from Japan. We both were able to receive blessings on our hands from the local priest. This clinic was established by 3 Sisters of Charity, over 3 years ago. Now they have over 40 families coming for assistance and treatments. It is a sight to see and I feel very blessed to have had the opportunity to attend events over 2 days. For details of our visits please look on Jean's Reiki blog listed below at the bottom of the blog.

I am so grateful for the quality of my life and for my friends and family. Seeing life on the border and south of the border gives one much to contemplate and feel gratitude. My life is always blessed and for that I am sincerely grateful.