July 21, 2015


The first pit I ever did, and one of the most beautiful places I have ever been:

July 9, 2015

How to check 18650 caving light batteries with a Multi-meter

I'm making this post so the next time I forget, I have the directions handy.

Set the multimeter to 20 DCV

4.2 volts 100%
4.1 about 90%
4.0 about 80%
3.9 about 60%
3.8 about 40%
3.7 about 20%
3.6 empty for practical purposes
3.5 over-discharged

July 7, 2015

Fun Stuff 2015

Jan 1  Mulberry.  Level 2 ft.  Air temps in the 50's. In the Liquid Logic Stomper 80.  With various members of the BCC.  Photos here.

Jan 3 Talladega Creek.  Level 1.5 ft when we put-in, 1 ft. when we took out.  In the Stomper 80. With Joan, David and Amanda, and another David.  I would call this run class II at this level, with the exception of Rob Roy which is an easy III.  Photos here.

Mrs. Steed and I at the scouting rock for Rob Roy rapid on Talladega Creek.
Jan 11 Town Creek.  In the LL Stomper 80.  Air temps 40's, water temp COLD.  Level 386 according to the flowpage tonight.  With members of the BCC.  Photos here.
Jan 18 Mulberry.  In the LL Stomper 80.  Level very low - maybe 6"?  Air temps high 50's-low 60's. With Mark G and David R.


Jan 31 Blowing Saltpeter Cave.  With the B'ham Grotto.   26 of us went to one of the first caves I ever did, great trip.  First time using the Fenix HL55 *with* the Zebra floody.  On the way back, looked in a very decorated IKF found by Donna C. and Jennifer P.  Pics HERE.
Feb 1 War Eagle.  With Ray M, Tim H, Juan F.   Gorgeous gorgeous pit.   Pics HERE.

Feb 8 Ridgewalk/Wyvern Well.  With Dave H. and Andy Z.  Went ridgewalking in the big coon with Dave H and Andy Z yesterday to visit a couple of old leads. We didn't find either lead we were there to explore, but Dave found a new pit lead that needs some vertical exploration, and we found/entered the top area of Wyvern Well, a cave Dave found and added to the survey many years ago. It is a short climbdown to a room that has a window to a drop that I think is around 50 feet, with a skylight. There's another room below that.  Photos HERE.

Feb 14 visit with Miss Iris Ranelli.  Newest member of my family.

Feb 20  Ticks Reunion at the Nick.  First time together since 1997.

Feb 27-March 1  Grotto Getaway.  At the Paint Rock Valley Lodge.  Photos here.

Dale, me, Bruce.  Bridge Day buddies

March 7-8 Mulberry Fork Races.   March 8- paddled the Mulberry in the cavers' new raft, then a second time in the Hyside Paddlecat with Chris G.  Photos here.

March 14-16 ALF 2015.  Ain't Louie Fest 2015.  With the Lost Tribe.
March 14- Whites Creek, level was .9 when we put on, and 1 ft. when we took-out. In the LL Stomper 80.  Air temps mid-upper 50's and misty/rain.
March 15 - O.U.T. Race on Tellico river, level 2.6, in the Blackfly Option 92.  Air temps upper 60's/low 70's, sunny gorgeous day.
March 16 - Middle Tellico, level 2.3, in the LL Stomper 80.  Air temps low 70's, another gorgeous day.  Photos here.  Videos of race here.
March 21 Trail tagging at Ruffner Mtn.  With the Birmingham Grotto.  Photos here.

March 22 Mulberry.  In the LL Stomper 80.  Level about .9 on the bridge, 5.33 online,  1.09 using the correlation 0.75 * 5.33 -2.9.  With Lynn, Josh, and other members of the BCC.

March 24-30 Ski trip to Jackson Hole, Wyoming.   Had 8-12" fresh snow fall our first night, so Wed-Thurs was some powder.  Friday went to Grand Targhee and was ice (Sacajawea!).  Saturday was back to Jackson for some slushy snow.  Warm temps.  Photos here.

April 11 Mulberry.  In the Wave Sport Project X56.  With Rundell C.   Level 1.6 on the bridge, we were surprised to find Training Wheels washed out into a flat (nice) front surfing wave.  Didn't bring the camera.  Air temps in the 70's.

April 12 Talladega Creek, Kymulga Mill Putin.   With members of the Birmingham Grotto.  Brought my camera but the battery was dead.  Level on the gauge at http://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/uv?site_no=02406500 was in the 250 range.  The groundskeeper at the mill charges $3 per boat to park your car there (two of us in one canoe for $3, for instance).  He closes the gate at 5pm.
He, and Damon who lives nearby, predicted a 6 hour float due to the deadfall/strainers, but even with a couple of portages we did the trip in a leisurely 3.5 hours.

April 18 Tumbling Rock Cave.  With the Bham Grotto, Scout trip to the Christmas tree.  Photos here.
April 19 High Water Locust Fork.  With the Bham Grotto rafters and Kyle S.  Level 7.5 and rising on the gauge.  Great day!  Photos here.
April 26  Upper Nanty in the Hyside Paddlecat.  With Jenni H. and Ryland G.  Level 650 on Cascades, 1400 on Lower Nanty, and put-in sidewalk covered.  Temps in the mid to upper 60's. Water was a bit colder than usual Upper Nanty release; I wore a drytop and neoprene shorts. Video here.
May 2 Float The Lazy River.   BCC class on the Cahaba, Grants Mill to Overton, level 180.   Air temp 70ish, water temp chilly.  Sunshine, great day.  Photos here.
May 3 Mulberry.   Level under a foot.  (4.99 ft USGS). Taught a kayak private instruction to Julie L. With Joan S.  In the LL Remix 69.  Air temp up 70's-low 80's, water temp chilly.  Wonderful, wonderful day!  Photos here.
May 9-10 SERA.  With the B'ham Grotto including Kathy K.   Visited Buffalo Cove cave and Pickett rock shelter.  Photos here.
May 23 Hiwassee.  With Ry and Jenni.  In the Project X 56.  Beautiful day.
May 24.  Upper Ocoee.  With Wendy A.  and a slew of other shredders, canoeists, and kayakers.  In the Hyside Paddlecat.  Swam at Mikeys, dumped at Callahans, swam under the bridge.  ugh!  All's well that ends well.   First carnage via paddlecat since I bought it.
May 31 Float The Lazy River 2.  On the Lily section of the Cahaba (West Blocton).   In the LL Remix 69.   Gorgeous day.
...lack of photos due to losing my camera in my house after May 2nd trip.   Found it June 22nd.
June 13 Hiwassee.  With Christine B., Allie and Kirk.  In the Project X 56.
June 20 Bike Ride.  With Andy and Lynn.   On an 05 Specialized Allez Elite.
June 27-July 3 Week Of Rivers 2015.  Annual event hosted by the Carolina Canoe Club.
June 28- Nantahala, Ferebee thru falls, in the LL Stomper 80.  With Joan S., Linda D., Lorraine B., and joined by Wendy A. in her new Bakraft.
June 29- Tuck Town (Devil's Dip).  WS Project X 56.  With Joan S., Linda W., Lorraine B. Then a walk thru Bryson City, lunch at the Filling Station, great BLT.
June 30- Pigeon.  In the LL Stomper 80.  With Joan S., Greg M., Lorraine B.
July 1- Tuckaseegee Gorge.  In the WS Project X 56.  With Joan S., Linda D., Lorraine B., Charlotte in her new (used) Varun, others.   2 generators.
July 2- Canoe Clinic on the Nantahala, Ledges to Donnie Dutton.   In the Blackfly Option.  Led by Sarah R. with her dad Rich, Sue R. also in clinic.
July 3- Little Tennessee, in the Blackfly Option.  With many folks listed above also including Oci-one Kanubi.  Level 700, class I.
Photos for the Week of Rivers 2015 here.
July 4 BBQ and Party.   BBQ at my brother Frank's and SIL Rene's house, baby Iris and fam from New York, and niece Sophia visiting from New Zealand.
Then classic Southside B'ham party at kick-ass house, with pool, 3 bands, fireworks, everything...

July 11-19 NSS Convention.   Great time.  Camped with the Howells and Sewanee Grotto.
Sunday: Arrived at Convention, set up camp.
Monday: Trip to Carroll Cave, 3 hr trip, MUDDY, GORGEOUS.   Howdy Party at camp.
Tuesday: National sessions.
Wednesday: International Sessions.  Wed. night party.
Thursday: Float trip on Gasconade River.   Photo Salon Thurs. night.
Friday: Entrance visits to Tunnel Cave and Railroad Cave, then a stop by Roubidoux Springs with Danny C.  Banquet and awards that night.  Valerie H. received her NSS Fellowship.
Photos here.
Incredibly decorated Carroll Cave

Enormous entrance to Tunnel Cave

June 23, 2015

This song makes no sense to me...

...However Donna posted the best explanation of it I have ever heard:
 "I think it's about a man nuts about a psycho who does mean things and calls it love.  Odd song for him to shoot a video of for his own wedding!"
...btw they divorced.


June 21, 2015

More info on ABS/ Blue Hole Canoes

From rec.boats.paddle, and Bob B.: