A Family Adventure

in the mountains, ocean, and air

I’ve been busy having fun!

October 22, 2007
Emilie Phillips


We were intending to go kayaking last Sunday, but when we wandered outside it was crisp and clear, so we chickened out and went hiking instead. We managed to convince Steve to come along. The foliage was starting to turn nicely. Unfortunately we all had more stuff to do, so we kept the hike somewhat short.

Rock climbing

A number of us at work rock climb. And we have off and on discussed regularly showing up at the rock gymn. We made one more attempt this Tuesday. We managed to get 4 people together, Tyson and I, Paul who has come before, and Hiten who is pretty new to rock climbing. Orin was the one who had chosen the day because it was lady’s night at the gymn had to skip because work sent him out of town.


I did some mental calculations and figured that if I was going to spend an hour or so after getting home from work riding around on my motorcycle, I might just as well commute to work and take the back roads which adds an extra half hour each way. The weather was only supposed to be good Wednesday, so I rode that day. And then Thursday morning they reforecasted to that being good too. So I decided to try a second time. I’m really starting to like my motorcycle. Once you get it up on the rpms, it has plenty of power. I’ve been finding it quite maneuverable. And even after an hour and a half, it isn’t uncomfortable. Reading online, it sounds like there is a reasonable community of people who consider the Ninja 250 to be a reasonable long term choice rather than just a starter bike since it is so nice and easy to use but still has performance and comfort. The biggest downside I have noticed is that the windshield really doesn’t do much at higher speeds. It does some if I tuck myself down against the motorcycle.

Tyson did some research online into the rough idle, and it sounds like it might be either a clogged carburetor or leaks in the vacuum hoses. The former is less likely because the place I bought the motorcycle from cleaned the carburetor right before selling it to me.

I think Tuesday and Friday this week were the only days I didn’t make it out at least once on the motorcycle. Saturday after it cleared up from Friday’s rain was absolutely gorgeous. The sky was bright blue, it was warm, the fall colors were in full display. And all that was so much prettier running my errands on the motorcycle. Picture

Apple Sauce

I didn’t get much interest in doing another apple sauce party, so I made apple sauce on my own saturday. I made less than I would have with a group, and I burned one pot of apples. But otherwise it went ok. I might make some more next weekend if I am motivated. For now, though, I have 15 more quarts of tasty home made apple sauce.

Rock climbing

In hiking around, we have found a number of cliffs that look climbable. Sunday we decided to try out a cliff on North Pack. We attempted to convince a bunch of people to come, but only Hiten was available. The biggest disadvantage of this cliff is that you have to hike at least an hour straight up the mountain to get to it. We first set up in a crack back in a sloping corner. The crack was a nice warm up for Tyson and I, and a good challenge for Hiten. The problem with that anchor was that the crack sloped back such that for any climb to the side of the crack you were going to pendulum back to the crack when you fell. Hiten repeated the crack a couple of times until he grocked it. I did the face just left of the crack. There wasn’t anything big on the face. It was just lots of little things and the fact that it was slightly slabbed, but that was a fun challenge. The rock there is very nice and grippy which helped. Tyson did another crack farther left, and then tried the face but didn’t make it up. Then we moved the anchor farther right. There was only one possible ending to the climb, but there were two starts, one was slightly overhanging and the other was a walk up. Everyone tried the overhang. Tyson tired himself out at the crux by the time I figured out how to get past it. I made it up with some difficulty. For Hiten, even the walk up was somewhat of a challenge. The second half of the climb involved some slopey grips and other things that just don’t make you feel comfortable, but was actually reasonably easy. Hiten took lots of coaching to get through that, but was really proud when he made it to the top. I meanwhile set up another anchor on an easier route. That one we climbed up in a bit more of a hurry because it was getting dark. Overall I’d say it is a great climbing spot. It offers a good variety of difficulties and angles. The rock gives you lots of options for how to climb one area.


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Comments (7)

      • Lithuania was turning in mid-September; Seattle was turning last week and probably hit its peak as I was taking off into the clouds; Chicago is probably about at peak, though the peak here is weak. Somehow I expected you guys would be more on the Lithuanian schedule than the Seattle one though. But I guess Maine / New Brunswick really are a fair bit North of you.

        Weather-wise, Chicago has been a bit nutty. 80 degrees on Sunday, 50s this week (nevermind the marathon debacle). It’s really odd to be in a t-shirt and a bit on the warm side with yellow trees all around.

  • The red suit

    I assume that you have worn the red aerostich suit to work on the days that you commute by motorcycle. Any comments from co-workers? I have simply worn down the people my office.

    Anonymous Dad

  • About the kitchen island: something to consider is whether you want a ledge on the far side (towards the dining room), about 3-6″ high. Makes it harder for a curious kid to reach up and land their fingers into the back burner, and it means you don’t fear shoving things around next to the stove and having it land on the dining room floor.

    My parents don’t have a ledge. Most my friends do.

    I’m totally going to your housewarming party.