Archive for May 2009

Day 5: Vegas to Valley

Most people think casinos and extravagent shows when they think of Las Vegas; however, I see it as a great place to begin a road trip. Three years ago I headed north to Utah (okay, via the Strip, where all the big casinos are), and returned via Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam. This time I’m skipping the Strip and heading straight to Death Valley.

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Day 4: you say aloha, and I say aloha

How do you translate the Beatles’ lyrics “you say goodbye, and I say hello” into Hawaiian? Just curious.

Anyway, today was my last mad dash on the Big Island before heading back to Oahu (airport only), and then the mainland.

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Day 3: oh no, not more volcanoes!

If you’re not interested in volcanoes, have a look at this recipe for chicken with banana leaves instead.

Yesterday, the webcam at the Jaggar Museum (on display at the Visitor’s Center ) was a whiteout – you could only see cloud. When I stopped there this morning, there was actually something to see, so I headed to the Jaggar Museum as my first stop of the day.

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Day 2: volcanoes and pigs

If it’s Tuesday the 26th again, this must be Hawaii.

After all the usual hassle of arriving in a new country, taking another flight, picking up a hire car, etc., I actually started sightseeing.

The first stop was the visitor’s centre at Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. (Quick aside: if you plan your trips right, the yearly pass that you bought in 2008 and used in a few National Parks can be reused nine months later for four more National Park visits.) Everything was clouded in, so there wasn’t much prospect of seeing any great views, let along taking photos with any kind of contrast.

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Day 1 part 2

As you may know, I’m a bit of a gadget person. (There may be subtle understatement in the preceding sentence.) One new gadget I’ve got for this trip is a GPS datalogger; that’s a device that logs your location (and other information such as velocity and whether it’s time to change your socks) obtained from the GPS system every few seconds, saving it to its internal storage. Then, after your day’s hike or drive or whatever, you can load that track of locations onto your computer, and do clever things like adding location information to all the photos you took during the day.

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Day 1 part 1

The last few days just sped past, and I didn’t get time to write any more posts; I’m typing this (on my iPhone, using the very neat WordPress app) just before my flight descends into Sydney.

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Yosemite in September 1996

My first trip to Yosemite was in 1984 with my family, of which I have only a few memories. My second trip was by myself in 1996, and I’ve just found my travel diary from that trip. Here are some edited excerpts.

Tim on top of Half Dome

Tim on top of Half Dome in 1996

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T minus 3 days

With three days to go, I’ve now:

  • booked my last two nights’ accommodation
  • worked out all the different carry-on and checked baggage allowances for my flights (Qantas domestic, Jetstar Starclass, Hawaiian Interisland, Hawaiian to the mainland, and Qantas international Premium Economy), so I know how much I can take, and how much I can buy there
  • bought some more socks.

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What’s Yosemite like now?

Ahwahnee Meadow webcam

Ahwahnee Meadow webcam

There’s plenty of information about Yosemite National Park you can find with Google from the National Park Service website, Wikipedia, and so on.  But it’s a bit trickier to find out up-to-date information about what’s going on now. Here are some links that I’ve found helpful.

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Las Vegas to San Francisco: Death Valley and the Sierra Nevada

I love going on road trips, but the kind of trips I take are planned down to the day; I’ll leave the spontaneity to the younger folk.  And considering the trouble I had getting accommodation in Yosemite, it’s just as well I planned several months ahead.  Here’s the route (click through for the full details on Google Maps):

Las Vegas to San Francisco

Las Vegas to San Francisco

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