What to Do on a Sunny Day in England

The morning was bright and sunny so we decided to take a day trip to the Lake District. Traveling north up the M6 ​​we left the motorway at junction 40 for North Lakes, heading towards Keswick. We turned left left toward Ullswater at the roundabout by the Rheged visitor center which is built into the…

The morning was bright and sunny so we decided to take a day trip to the Lake District. Traveling north up the M6 ​​we left the motorway at junction 40 for North Lakes, heading towards Keswick. We turned left left toward Ullswater at the roundabout by the Rheged visitor center which is built into the hillside and is very popular. We went through a little village called Stainon where the village pub is also the post office, onward from there to Pooley Bridge passing an Alpaca Center on the way. We had a walk round Pooley Bridge, visiting one of the cafe's for an excellent coffee, then walked down to the pier where the Ullswater steamers dock from Glenridding.

Ullswater is the second largest lake in the Lake District. Leaving Pooley Bridge we traveled down the side of the lake passing the National Trust Aira Force where there are woodland walks around the waterfall. Passing through Glenridding we headed for the Kirkstone Pass, after reaching the summit we turned right opposite the Kirkstone Pass Inn and followed the narrow winding road towards Ambleside.

Ambleside is a very popular shopping area specifically for outdoor clothing and equipment. There are lots of pubs and cafe's for a welcome break, some of them catering for celiacs and other special dietary needs. If you are feeling energetic you could walk up to the spectacular Stock Ghyll Force waterfall but that was not for us this time. The weather was beautiful with plenty of people around even though it was late November. The ice cream vendors were doing a roaring trade. Having had our lunch we headed for Grasmere, one of my favorite villages, it always seems so peaceful even when there are plenty of people about. We visited Dove Cottage and museum also Wordsworth's grave in St Oswald's Church cemetery, the grave is under one of eight yew trees planted by Wordsworth during his time there. Having spent some time taking photographs of the area we then set off and headed towards Windermere and Bowness calling in at Rydal Mount another of Wordsworth's homes with its 4 acres of landscaped gardens designed by Wordsworth himself. I would say that Windermere and Bowness are the most commercial areas of the Lake District and not representative of the rest of the National Park.

Having spent a wonderful day site-seeing, shopping and taking numerous photographs we left for home just as it was going dark. The journey was quite uneventful despite the motorway was quite busy due to people traveling for the last night of the Blackpool illuminations. All in all a very pleasant day out.

Adventure Cycling in Enchanting Tuscany

To venture into Tuscany's enchanting Chianti region, located between Florence and Siena, is to discover a cyclist's paradise. Biking routes abound for those who wish to cycle off-the-beaten-path in a region painted in picture perfect panoramas of vineyards, olive groves and vast farmland. A maze of winding biking trails and rural roads meander through the…

To venture into Tuscany's enchanting Chianti region, located between Florence and Siena, is to discover a cyclist's paradise. Biking routes abound for those who wish to cycle off-the-beaten-path in a region painted in picture perfect panoramas of vineyards, olive groves and vast farmland. A maze of winding biking trails and rural roads meander through the rolling valley terrain, gradually leading to hilltop towns. Stretching through Tuscany, cycling routes range in levels from easy to strenuous for amateur to veterinary cyclists.

In this sun-drenched region with its green patchwork of lands, there is much to see and do while cycling. Breathtaking vistas of ochre fields punctuated by swathes of red poppies and golden-ripe sunflowers serve as the backdrop to magnificent panoramas of ancient villages perched on the hillsides. Lined with the occasional oak and olive groves, the roads unfold into an infinite horizon of verdant and wine colored grapevines.

The Chianti Loop circles through medieval towns steeped in regional history. Encircled by their ancient ramparts, these villas boast clusters of Romanesque churches, abbeys, castles and fortresses. In the heart of Tuscany, Greve in Chianti, a large market town, sits at the crossroads of an ancient trade route between Florence and Siena. Delightful communities, such as Montefiorale and Panzano surround the town, where castles turned patrician homes spatter the landscape. In its stone houses and paved streets, Montefiorale reflects its medieval architecture, and Panzano's Romanesque church of San Leolino is home to precious works of art.

From Greve, loop through the main Chianti towns. Castellina in Chianti is nestled around a 13th century castle. The town's origins date back to Etruscan times, its importance due to its strategic location. Along the ancient ramparts, the towering fortress offers stunning countryside vistas, and an impressive underground tunnel, the Via delle Volte, wraps around the city, today housing shops and restaurants. This is the spot for a short break for tired limbs and taste a delicious gelato.

A long descent with sweeping panoramas of vineyards and olive groves across the Val d'Elsa (Elsa Valley), followed by a graduate ascent, terminates in Colle Val d'Elsa, a village blamed for its crystal glassware. Perched on a hilltop overlooking the Elsa River, Colle Val d'Elsa, a historic town on the Via Francigiena, the road used by pilgrims from Rome to northern Europe, developed in three districts. Upper Colle preserves its 14th and 16th century fortifications, buildings, old gates and medieval sights, such as the ancient tower house and Campana building, which are architectural masterpieces. From here, San Gimignano is just a short jaunt away.

Looping around, the Chianti biking route continues to Radda in Chianti, a beautiful town enclosed in large defensive ramparts. Characterized by its narrow streets converging into a main piazza, Radda maintains its medieval charm. Numerous castles and churches, among them the castle of Volpaia and the Romanesque church of Santa Maria in Prato, nestle in the surrounding hills. Not far, Monteriggioni conforms perfectly to the model image of a walled community, with its ramparts and towers essentially intact and giving way to original attractive buildings.

After an arduous day of cycling, the Badia a Coltibuono, historically a monastery, offers the perfect end to an adventure-packed day. Famed for its wines and prized olive oil, the Badia features agrotourism accommodations in a gorgeous setting to relax with a drink, take in the view and spend the night.

Why Extreme Weather Impacts Tourism

There does not seem to be many years in living memory where extreme weather has not affected a region of the world. The impact on tourism due to extreme weather is only too evident, and in some cases it takes a while for the regions to get back on their feet. Extreme weather hits the…

There does not seem to be many years in living memory where extreme weather has not affected a region of the world. The impact on tourism due to extreme weather is only too evident, and in some cases it takes a while for the regions to get back on their feet. Extreme weather hits the islands of the Caribbean and the southern states of America year in year out in the form a hurricanes and tropical storms. Storms such as Hurricane Katrina not only ravaged the Caribbean islands but tor the city of New Orleans to pieces causing widespread damage and the loss of life. Tourism in the region almost ground to a halt simply because the city was underwater for several weeks and any attractions and hotels were either completely destroyed or out of action. As a consequence the city and the surrounding region suffered dramatically from the loss of revenue gained by tourism for much of 2005 and 2006.

Extreme weather can take many different forms, as I have mentioned above hurricanes are a common occurrence in the Caribbean and the southern states of the USA but other regions of the world suffer the exact opposite. Drought is common in Africa and in Australia; this year alone has seen roughly 12 million people displaced in Somalia, Ethiopia & northern Kenya as the result of the worst drought in 60 years. Although tourism in these regions is scarce the fear the Drought may spread south into Kenya's more touristy regions has been a factor and had a lot of people cancelling their holidays scared of what may happen. Drought means starvation as crops fail to materialize leading to famine which is many cases leads to violence and conflict.

As global warming seems to becoming more of a presence in the world we live in, extreme weather is a consequence entirely of our actions and it's usually the poor, impoverished nations who feel the full force of the effects. The problem with extreme weather is it's typically very unpredictable and even when it can be predicted it's difficult to prepare for the absolute worst. Once a destination starts being branded as a risky destination to travel to because of extreme weather that's when the tourism industry begins to tail off and year by year the country receives fewer and less visitors. The main reason many of us travel abroad is for good weather, whether it's a summer holiday or a winter break skiing in the Alps, quite the weather plays a deciding factor in where we choose to travel. If a destination has a reputation of extreme cases of bad weather it's highly unlikely we are going to risk a two-week holiday there when there are plenty other destinations in the world without the weather problems. As a country that experiences extreme weather there is very little you can do about the tourism industry, you just need to rely on the weather gods to help you out a little bit.

Salty Love and Sanity

First off, I would like to say “My Bad!” for being out of touch for so long. My computer flipped me the bird and got an attitude. Yes, I did back up my data in case you are wondering. What a relief when I accessed my back-up account and found all my files. Blog posts,…

First off, I would like to say “My Bad!” for being out of touch for so long. My computer flipped me the bird and got an attitude. Yes, I did back up my data in case you are wondering. What a relief when I accessed my back-up account and found all my files. Blog posts, articles, pictures, podcasts in progress, videos in progress, you name it, all there.

My computer is fixed and back in action (Thanks Sal! You are an awesome tech bro!). It took me about a whole month to restore harmony but that's peanuts compared to the big picture.

Lessons?

You bet! Back up! Back up! Back up! Those instants of anxiety and uncertainty soon become a memory once you confirm your intellectual work is safe and sound. Loving cloud technology!

Anyways, back to business and onto the main topic. What's up with this ” Salty Love ” thing? Hey, get your mind out of the gutter, is not nothing like that. The Salty Love comes from the beautiful waters in my backyard, Puget Sound .

Those who know me know how much I love scuba diving. There's a power in salt water I can not describe and there is a need in me to be close to it and be part of it. The first time I visited the underwater world in scuba gear was one that changed my life, a moment of enrichment and completeeness. My fellow divers know very well what I'm talking about.

Alas, many of you also know how I allowed my previous commitments to keep me dry and how I allowed them to create a creeping time gap. ” I'll dive next week ” turned into ” I'll dive next month ” and ever ” I'll dive next season “. And within an eye blink, a year went by. I regrouped with the best intentions and returned to the water. I promised myself I would not neglect my diving again.

But I did not let it last.

I was still in the process of discovering myself, of learning to prioritize, and learning to step out of my comfort zone. I was in the process of learning to separate my work life from my personal life, and I fooled myself into thinking both could co-exist in the same dimension. The unimportant appeared crucible and again, I started compromising my personal life. And just like that, ” I'll go diving next week ” turned into ” I'll go diving next month ” and so forth until without warning, two years went by.

Without realizing, I distanced myself from the world I love so much. I was so overwhelmed I even contemplated selling my gear gear, and had the ads prepared.

Do not get me wrong. That hiatus was a time of tremendous learning and professional growth and has allowed me to help people like never before, but I was lacking balance. I could only see myself occupied every hour with every aspect of what I thought should have priority in my life. Leisure seemed an irrelevant waste of time and going back to diving out of the question and I thought I could close a chapter of my life by selling my gear.

Yet something stopped me. Somehow I knew I'd be back in the water, but the reality I had created stood in the way. I was not miserable but I was not happy either. I was just copying and though I did not see it then, frustration was marring my health and creating stress for my loved ones.

There seemed to be no escape. There, was my diving gear, gathering dust, beckoning me to return and remembering me life is not complete if one does not know how to fully enjoy it.

And that is when life determined enough is enough and kicked my butt to teach me a lesson and open my eyes. Life sternly showed me that extremely, I, and only I, was in charge of my decisions and the opportunities they bought. If I was away from the water is because I had let it happen.

The lesson was painful but it did not escape me. As my life started changing, I made it a priority to return once again and this time for good. The curious part is things started unraveling as if they had been meticulously planned. Every event, every major action led me back to my forgotten passion and to my fellow divers.

There is a curious effect I call ” the sealer of gaps “. Whenever I meet with good friends I have not seen in a long time or visit dear places to which I have not been in a while, the time lapsed seems irrelevant. I see my friends and I feel as though we saw each other a few days ago. I visit the old familiar places, and even when they boast change, they still feel comfortable and homey. The time gap ceases and we pick up where we left off.

And that is how June 18th finally saw me return to the underwater realm which I so very much love. The weather was not the most stellar at Cove 2 (chilly, drizzly, rainy, hey it's Seattle!) But the dancing was awesome! Some of the top visibility in Puget Sound and a nice array of critters welcomed my return.

I was privileged to have my friend and instructor, Bob “Grateful Diver” Bailey , as my move buddy to help me get my feet wet again. Diving is a skill and equipment intensive activity and it holds true to the “use it or lose it” mantra.

Getting into my cold water gear felt suffocating and restrictive, just like it did the first time I donned it. I knew the feeling would dissipate in a matter of minutes as my body reacquainted with it but it only took a few seconds, Booyah! I was ready to get in the water.

My rig was a single tank configuration with long hose and Bob was diving side-mount. We went over emergency procedures, gear check, and reviewed our plan; it was time.

It would be an understatement to say how awkward the first few minutes of recovering ” my diving legs ” were. For a second I thought I did not have enough ballast but Bob reminded me to stop kicking during the descent. Timing between BDC inflator, Drysuit inflator, equalization and trim were rusty, the first few minutes were a silted mess and I felt horrible I was ruining the visibility for other divers.

And suddenly I relaxed and let go. The ” sealer of gaps ” was effectuating its magic and what appeared foreign started to feel familiar again. The struggle ceased and that incredible, addicting, mesmerizing feeling of weightlessness returned as I was now able to focus on the underwater world and its beauty.

Dungeness crabs with the boys protecting their mates, Red-Rocks crabs in their fighting stance, shy shrimp scurrying at our presence, sculpins giving a lazy glance, lingcods, rockfish, plumose anemone, and massive starfish minding their business, and attesting for the rich life of our waters.

The highlight of the dive was seeing my first Giant Pacific Octopus tending to her eggs. What a beautiful sight of the majestic creature nursing and protecting her soon-to-be offspring. I plan on returning to check the progress of the young ones in the hopes of witnessing the hatching!

On our way back I realized I was slightly underweighted. I had not taken into account the thick (but awesomely warm) undergarments I had under my suit. More often than not, thicker undergarments mean more ballast is needed. No biggie, I would add two pounds for our next dive.

What a way to return to the water! The surface conditions were gloomier, rainier, and darker but I did not care; to me it was a magnificent day where the mist of the air accentuated the aroma of the salt water to reawaken happy memories.

After our surface interval, gear fine tuning, and discussing our venture for our next immersion, we headed for our second dive. The tide was almost at peak low and dragging silt and snot. The visibility of the first dive would not be there but it was still decent.

Shortly after my descent, a sharp sensation came from the left side of my neck, radiating down my chest and left arm.

I slowed down and stopped briefly.

The sensation larger stronger and continued down to my midsection and my left leg, eventually reaching down my left foot.

Crap!

My suit was flooding!

I had not experienced a drysuit flood before and what an unpleasant feeling it is. I signed Bob and we ascended. Since we had been underwater for only 2 minutes, Bob offered to check my neck seal and see if this was operator error or the suit itself.

We moved to an area in which we were able to stand up and I could remove my hood.

Oh Wow !” Bob said as he helped me unroll a bunched up neck seal – ” No wonder you are getting drenched there “.

We discussed whether continuing the move with wet undergarments or call it a day, the decision up to me. I knew the undergarments were designed to stay warm even when damp, it would only take a little longer for temperatures to catch up. I decided to go ahead with the dive with a conservative profile.

This dive was highlighted by the little critters as we made our way to wreck of the Honey Bear. Lots of Nudibranchs, shrimp (I'm amazed at how incredibly FAST they move underwater), and my first ever lumpsucker, beautiful tiny critter in a funny looking way. Bob has a fantastic eye!

I have to say that in regards to Bob, I was amazed at how freely he was moving underwater in his side-mount rig. He could easily turn sideways and even went upside down. I have never seen anyone in doubles do that. It is something I will definitely consider for the future.

As much fun as I was having, damp undergarments started up and I started getting chilly. We headed back to shore and I was pleased at how two extra pounds of ballast made a tremendous difference. I found myself hovering in five feet of water without issues.

What fun! Nothing like that feeling of opening your neck seal at the end of the dive to relate the vacuum of the drysuit.

Poof !! Ahhh !!

That was the reminder of my damp undergarments and time to change.

A distant fog quietly sat on the sound, the Invigorating drizzle mixed with the salty breeze and the farming aroma of fried fish. A cup of coffee with a bowl of soup followed by a cold beer sounded pretty darn good! Bob, my loving wife Kat, and I headed to the international district for Dim Sum, meet some friends, and talk diving.

The ” sealer of gaps ” had done its magic again. I felt as I had never been absent from the underwater world. All the resentful feelings I had within me for prohibiting such hiatus vanished. All that remained was the euphoric post-dive feeling, the camaraderie of other fellow divers, and knowing I would be sleeping great that night, dreaming weightlessness and bubbles, and planning my next dive.

I am in charge of my decisions and my destiny. I do not mind working hard and doing everything I have to (and then some) to grow as an individual and as a professional, but I have also learned about the importance of pursuing the activities we enjoy to reward our efforts and keep our sanity.

Being part of the saltwater is critical for my own mental health. Too long it went neglected, and too long I went paying a price I did not even see.

I look forward to many more adventures with my fellow divers. If I do not see you benefit the surface …

I'll see you on the exercise floor!

Some Things To Do In Queens With A New York Limo

So you're hanging around Queens and need something to do? With the large selection of activities your options seem limitless. With amazingly diverse food, parks, museums, an active nightlife and not to mention the Mets, you can not go wrong. So hop into your New York Limo, grab some friends and prepare for an exciting…

So you're hanging around Queens and need something to do? With the large selection of activities your options seem limitless. With amazingly diverse food, parks, museums, an active nightlife and not to mention the Mets, you can not go wrong. So hop into your New York Limo, grab some friends and prepare for an exciting day. Get your friends or family ready for a day that they will remember for a long time.

When it comes to choosing a place to eat in Queens things can be difficult. With all the different choices for food it's understandable. If you are looking for a good place to get some lunch check out Bohemian Hall and Beer Garden, with its great beer and Czech food it makes for a great spot to eat. Feeling that Italian food is what your craving? Il Toscano is the best spot in town if you're looking for classy or Italian. If your a vegetarian look into Dosa Hutt. It has an Indian spin that is strait delicious. These are just a few of the choices, there are many more that are just as likely to please.

Now that food is done with we need to look at activities. Your New York Limo will take you anywhere so that is not an issue. Take a look at the cultural deep museums located in Queens. Many of these are free or at least have free days for the budget conscious. The public parks in Queens have everything you could want, from hiking to birdwatching, and even playing cricket! Maybe watching the Mets play in Flushing Stadium is more up your alley. So buy those tickets and do not forget to give your New York Limo Service a ring.

The nightlife in Queens is rather active. There are many options as far as bars go in Queens and we will only cover a few. Woodhaven House is an Irishman's fantasy. A beautiful pub that is family friendly with an emphasis on attention and care. If your looking for a crowd in the 20-30s range then try out the NoNo Cocktail Lounge. With absolutely no TV's, NoNo's is the best kept secret on Bell Boulevard. Maybe you want a burger with your drink? Lounge 47 is a 70s style bar that serves great food and is in general a good place to hang. So hop into your New York Limo and pick one of these great locations.

Queens is a great place to hang for a day, with so much to do you cant go wrong. With museum's and parks galore there is plenty for you to do, as well as an awesome sports team. The variety of food making Queens one of the best cities to find something to eat at. Complimenting all of this is a great selection of bars and pubs. How can you go wrong? So call up your New York Limo Service ( http://www.gothamlimo.com/ ) provided by Gotham Limo and go pick up your friends or family. Be Prepared for a memorable day that will be sure to please anyone.

Caravan Parks and Campgrounds Perfect for Quick Weekend Getaways

Going on a quick trip out of the city is easy if you live in Perth. This Western Australian city offers many locations you can go to for a quick weekend out of the hustle and bustle of city life. Outside the city of Perth, campgrounds are easy to find and take no more than…

Going on a quick trip out of the city is easy if you live in Perth. This Western Australian city offers many locations you can go to for a quick weekend out of the hustle and bustle of city life. Outside the city of Perth, campgrounds are easy to find and take no more than an hour's drive to get to. Each place offers a variety of activities you can choose from. Take a trip to one of these locations and relax as you experience the beauty of south-western Australia.

The city is lucky to be near river systems and the Indian Ocean. Adventurers can choose between parking in caravan parks near the beaches of Western Australia and going to one of the Perth campgrounds near the rivers where you can fish and cook, soak in the beauty of nature, and discover wildlife. Once you make your decision, consider a few of Perth's popular weekend destinations for your next trip.

Wilbinga is the nearest campsite you can visit. It only takes 40 minutes to get the beach, and you can choose camping behind the sand dunes or by the rock formations in the area. Bring your 4×4 for an adventure in the dunes, or try out stunts and be a daredevil in your motorcycle as you navigate the trails. If you want to go on a day trip instead, head to Lancelin, which has big sand dunes and is a great location for windsurfing. You can also go to White Hills, which is a popular day trip destination offering diving and fishing sites.

If you want to see more of the ocean and try your hand at fishing, Lancelin offers rock lobsters and crayfish to catch and 14 different shipwreck sites you can dive on. You can also park in one of the caravan parks in Guilderton or in Ledge Park if you want to stay in quiet places with rich fishing sites. You can fish where the Moore River meets the ocean in Guilderton and spend a quiet night under the stars. On the other hand, in Ledge Park, you will find a golf course that offers a beautiful view of the ocean, as well as shipwreck sites you can drive to.

You can choose to camp further inland in one of the campsites near the city. Avon Valley National Park offers various camping sites, but make sure to ask rangers where you can set up camp legally. If you want to go water skiing and you have your own boat, you can go to Waroona Dam or Logue Brook Dam and camp there. Dwellingup is another popular site quickly becoming a favorite with campers. You have to pay to camp in the park, but it is well worth your money if you want an adventure. Go canoeing in the rapids, take your mountain bike and ride downhill, hike in one of its beautiful trails, or swim in fresh water. These are only some of the activities you can choose in Dwellingup.

These are only a few examples of Perth campgrounds you can visit over the weekend. Explore the rest of the region to find more adventures and activities you can try. Going on a memorable camping vacation is possible when locations like these are within your reach.

The English Lake District – A Hiker’s Guide to Blencathra

The motorist hurtling westwards on the A66 approaching Keswick in the northern Lake District will be aware of a vast mountain rising to the right of the road where, between Scales and Threlkeld, a series of ridges soar skywards to meet a main ridge over 2000 feet above . This is Blencathra, one of Lakeland's…

The motorist hurtling westwards on the A66 approaching Keswick in the northern Lake District will be aware of a vast mountain rising to the right of the road where, between Scales and Threlkeld, a series of ridges soar skywards to meet a main ridge over 2000 feet above . This is Blencathra, one of Lakeland's most impressive fells and it is a popular ascent.

Despite the mountain's imposing presence, all of these south facing ridges are negotiable by the walker as are ascents from either end of the main ridge. Here is a brief outline of a few of the routes to the summit.

From Threlkeld a path leads through fields and patches of woodland to pass above and behind the kennels of the Blencathra Foxhounds before beginning the relentlessly steep ascent of Hallsfell and the ridge that leads directly to the summit. This is the route known as Narrow Edge. If the name conjures images of a vertigo inducing climb fear not – it's an interesting and exciting route up the mountain but the fun sections of scrambling can be avoided if desired and are not difficult anyway. The last part is steep but again not difficult and leads directly to the summit cairn. Probably the best route to the top of Blencathra.

Sharp Edge is another popular way up and this time the fearsome name is – at least partly – justified. From Scales at the mountain's eastern end a path climbs towards Scales Fell before heading across the slopes above the wild valley of the Glenderamackin River to the North. This path then branches up to the left to reach the beautiful setting of Scales Tarn. Sharp Edge is the ridge rising to the right of the tarn up towards the craggy eminence of Foule Crag which from here appears to be the summit of the fall.

A path climbs up towards this ridge and the route gets more exciting the further you progress. It becomes narrow and exposed for a short section with one awkward move but in calm dry conditions is safe enough. It is easier to stay on the crest of the ridge as the sides can be slippery especially after rain which is frequent here! In windy or icy conditions this route is not recommended. Once the arete has been negotiated a steep rocky scramble takes you up to Foule Crag from where it is an easy walk over to the summit – in all a fine route and probably harder than Helvellyn's Striding Edge but much shorter.

As mentioned earlier; any of the ridges above the A66 can be used to ascend Blencathra though Narrow Edge is probably the best and from Scales a path carries on up Scales Fell to lead directly to the summit up above and to the left of Scales Tarn – a bad weather alternative to Sharp Edge from there. Likewise at the far end of the mountain a constructed path climbs from the Blencathra Center above Threlkeld to ascend Blease Fell to Knowe Crags. This route in my own opinion is better as a descent after traversing the fall but both of these are easy – all weather – walks.

Another walk I like is the route from Mungrisdale. This is longer at over 9 miles or 15km return but is varied and interesting with the advantage that the climb is more gradual and sees to avoid the inevitable uphill slogs of the others.

From Mungrisdale village follow the path along the Glenderamackin – keep following the river and do not branch off.After a little over two miles the valley turns north west and you are below the Sharp Edge path on the far side of the valley. Follow the path up to the end with some good views of Foule Crag and Sharp Edge ahead and passing beneath these you reach a col. Turn left and follow the path to the top of Foule Crag and on to the summit. The climb to Foule Crag is steep but is a walk not a scramble.

This route heads through some wild remote country and you will see far fewer people especially in the Glenderamackin Valley. Whiche route you do, pick a clear day for Blencathra's location along with its 868m or 2848ft altitude make for some of the best views in Lakeland.

Bear Pepper Spray: A Must for the Outdoorsman

While enjoying the outdoors can be a very rewarding experience, it can also be very dangerous at the same time. One of the most exciting things about hiking and camping in the backwoods is the chance to see wildlife living in their own habitat. The chance to be right in the middle of deer, elk,…

While enjoying the outdoors can be a very rewarding experience, it can also be very dangerous at the same time. One of the most exciting things about hiking and camping in the backwoods is the chance to see wildlife living in their own habitat. The chance to be right in the middle of deer, elk, bear, wild boar, and all types of other animals that we never get a chance to see is pretty surreal. Although these encounters can be pretty awesome most of the time, they can turn dangerous very quickly if we are not careful. Always give these animals the respect they deserve. Do yourself a favor and learn how to avoid close contact with these animals.

Some of the easiest creatures to find in the wild, and some of the most interesting to watch are Black Bears and Grizzly Bears. I could sit and watch these creatures all day long. If you do a lot of hiking, camping, or hunting, I would suggest learning the differences in the Black Bear and the Grizzly. Learn how to tell them apart. There are a lot of differences in their behavior; therefore, your response to an encounter with one of them would need to be different with each, especially in the event of an attack. The nonprofit Center for Wildlife Information website has a lot of helpful information about bears. While your intent should always be to avoid close encounters with these creatures, always be prepared to protect and defend yourself in the case of an incidental face to face with one of these 400 – 600 lb. giants. You might be surprised to know that research published in 2008 by some of the top bear researchers in the country confirmed that the most effective defense against a bear attack is bear pepper spray. It has been proven over the years to be far more effective than guns, with far less injuries to the victims. An analysis of 20 years of bear pepper spray accidents in Alaska found that the product effectively halted aggressive bear attacks in 92 percent of the cases. Out of 175 people involved in the incidents of this study, only three suffered injuries. Of these three, none of the injuries were serious enough to require hospitalization. You can read the full report from the Journal of Wildlife Management.

Bear Pepper Spray is a must for any outdoorsman. Do not make the mistake of thinking that Bear Pepper Spray and conventional pepper spray made for humans are the same thing. They are both made with the same active ingredient Oleoresin Capsicum (OC). The difference between Bear Pepper Spray and conventional human pepper spray is that Bear Pepper Spray must pass several EPA tests to ensure the use of the spray is humane to the animals. The EPA has also set size, strength, spray distance, and spray time standards for all EPA approved bear sprays to ensure their effectiveness in bear attacks. Although this spray will temporarily disable an animal by causing an intestinal burning of the eyes, nose and mouth, there are no drinking health effects that will affect the animal.

Bike Trails of Palm Springs

This is a cycling enthusiast dream, for the beginner up to the most experienced. Bring a camera with you, and plenty of water. This is also home to the annual Tour de Palm Springs, which raises money for many local charities. The systems of bike trails, which are some of the most beautiful in Southern…

This is a cycling enthusiast dream, for the beginner up to the most experienced. Bring a camera with you, and plenty of water. This is also home to the annual Tour de Palm Springs, which raises money for many local charities. The systems of bike trails, which are some of the most beautiful in Southern California, are broken down into sections called, “Loops”. These loops vary in term of distance and intensity. Here are just three of the most popular;

Deepwell loop

The Deepwell Loop Bike Trail is about 13 miles long and starts along the Mooreten Botanical Gardens, with pleasant views of the flowers, plants and forests, depending on the time of year. The Beginning of the deepwell route is at the corner of Mesquite Avenue and South Palm Canyon Drive. That stretch of the trail is the part that passes the gardens. From there it heads south until it reaches Laverne Way and turns east. At Sunrise Way the trail heads north across South Indian Trail until it reaches Mesquite Avenue and heads west. At the end of Mesquite is the South Palm Canyon Drive, the beginning of the trail. This is a reliably easy ride with stunning mountain vistas and desert beauty.

Canyon Country Club Loop

This is an easy ride only eight miles in length. The Canyon Country Club Loop goes all around Murray Canyon. The trail goes north up Toledo Avenue, west on Laverne Way, south on South Palm Canyon Drive and then east on Murray Canyon Road until it intersects back at Toledo. Here you'll see some of the most beautiful desert scenery, mixed with a suburban setting.

Citywide Loop

If you really want to see the city of Palm Springs, this is the best view you're going to get. This 35 mile bike loop is one of the longest, and goes around the entire city. Bike riders begin at the corner of Palm Canyon Drive and Tachevah Drive. From that point, the trail heads west and loops around heading south on Belardo Drive.

This is the section of town called Las Palmas. Many of the homes that line these streets belong to many celebrities. The trail then goes east for a short distance on Sunny Dunes Road, and quickly turns south onto South Palm Canyon Drive. On South Palm Canyon Drive, the trail goes past the Mooreten Botanical Gardens. When the trail reaches Murray Canyon, it turns to head northeast up Toledo Avenue. At Mesquite Avenue the trail turns left followed shortly after another left at the Bel Air Greens. The trail continues north until it reaches Tachevah Road.

Touring The Sunshine Coast

Australia is a gorgeous land filled with fantastic beaches and tropical rainforests. It is also a rugged land that is better suited for touring in a four wheel drive vehicle since most of the natural settings of this region can be challenging to navigate. Some tourists prefer to tour the area on their own, although…

Australia is a gorgeous land filled with fantastic beaches and tropical rainforests. It is also a rugged land that is better suited for touring in a four wheel drive vehicle since most of the natural settings of this region can be challenging to navigate. Some tourists prefer to tour the area on their own, although there are also a lot of 4WD day tours provided to individuals that would like to see it all with a guide.

The Colored Sands and Rainforest tour offered by a business called Noosa Safaris is one that's well worth the price. It begins on the Noose River on a ferry created to carry not only passengers but passenger vehicles additionally. This tour makes it possible for you to travel along the 40 mile beach and pay a visit to some of the most untouched regions in the Sunshine Coast. Travel by 4WD vehicle enables you to simply navigate through many areas that are not accessible by rented vehicle. These tours allow you to look out and delight in the stunning Rainbow Beach with its unbelievable sand dunes of colors that will delight and amaze you. Tours with this company will even include taking in the sights from the exceptional Double Island Point Lighthouse from which you'll be able to view the whole region not to mention a number of the underwater creatures, such as turtles and dolphins. If you visit in the Sunshine Coast's winter season you might even have the unique opportunity to watch some whales.

Another fantastic one day 4WD tour on the Sunshine Coast is one that is carried out by Sunrover. The Sunrover Fraser Island tour is one that will take you through the Glass House Mountains and down to Rainbow Beach. At some stage in this tour you are going to also get to visit the stunning Fraser Island and its 75 miles of sand and surf. You are coming to come across various creatures while you tour Fraser Island and sometimes this is one of the most incredible parts of touring this region.

You'll be amazed and pleased when you take a 4WD tour of the Sunshine Coast. It'll allow you to tour the most genuine parts of this land with help and let you encounter, in a rare natural environment, all this area has to offer. The Sunshine Coast is way more than magnificent beaches; it is also one of the most natural corners of the Earth that is filled with intrigue and tropical adventures.

There are various four wheel drive touring trips available through the region. You can unforgettable more information about the variety of tours available online or through your Sunshine Coast travel agent.