Author Archive

Namibia, Zimbabwe and Botswana Tour

Posted by on May 23rd, 2017

We recently took a SmarTours trip to southern Africa, visiting Namibia, Zimbabwe and Botswana, plus a quick walk across the bridge into Zambia (giving us a fourth pin to put into the map). The photo album is online for your viewing pleasure.

Once again, SmarTours came through with an interesting itinerary, good accommodations and an eclectic group of fellow travelers. This was our seventh SmarTours trip and we recommend them for price and quality.

Bali to Singapore Cruise

Posted by on April 15th, 2017

In February, 2017, we flew to Bali, Indonesia and cruised from there to Komodo, the Philippines, Brunei, Kota Kinabalu and Singapore. The album is posted for your enjoyment.

Papua New Guinea Cruise

Posted by on April 15th, 2017

Catching up on photo albums. Here is the album from our trip in January, 2016, to Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, New Britain and Vanuatu.

Star Flyer Cruise

Posted by on December 27th, 2015

Over Thanksgiving week, we flew to Panama City, Panama and boarded the Star Flyer for a cruise that transited the Panama Canal from Pacific to Caribbean and then sailed north to San Andres, Providencia and dropped us off at Grand Cayman. (The European and Canadian passengers continued on to Cuba.) The ship is small and intimate, with about 150 passengers on this itinerary. Sailing close to the wind, and with a cabin far forward in the bow, the ride was a bit rough but the opportunity to be on a sailing vessel was worth the extra effort of hanging on. The photo album is online for your viewing pleasure.

Portugal and Islands Cruise

Posted by on August 15th, 2015

We just returned from a 14-day cruise, leaving from Liverpool, UK, and visiting Portugal (Lisbon and Oporto), the Azores and Madeira. We were on the Black Watch, a Fred Olsen ship and were the only Yanks on board an otherwise-nearly-all-British cruise. (A handful of Australians plus a few assorted other EU citizens made up the difference.) Two more pins in the map for Marcia, bringing her total to 166; three more for me, bringing my total to 154.

The photo album is online.

Touring Cuba

Posted by on August 15th, 2015

Back in January, we spent a week touring Cuba. We had already booked the trip when the U.S. government started opening up relations with Cuba, so it was a good time to go, before the invading hordes of U.S. tourists arrive once the process of getting tour permissions is eased.

Sorry that it took a while to finish selecting and editing photos but the photo album is posted for your viewing pleasure.

Indian Ocean Cruise

Posted by on December 20th, 2014

We just returned from a cruise through the Indian Ocean. Starting in Sri Lanka, we visited the Maldives, Seychelles and Mauritius. Marcia’s country count is now 163. Alan’s is 150. The photo album is posted for your viewing pleasure.

Jakk’s Glade Highpoint Signpost Project

Posted by on September 21st, 2014

The Highpointers Club maintains a memorial to Jack “Guru Jakk” Longacre, the founder of the Club, in a glade on the slopes of Russell Mountain. The glade has a view up to the top of Taum Sauk Mountain, the Missouri highpoint. In the glade are two telephone poles with arrows pointing to the various state highpoints. I’m in charge of maintaining the signposts, so developed a web page with an inventory of the arrows, their conditions, names of the highpoints with elevation, distance and bearing from the Glade. Right now, a couple need replacing because of weathering plus there are four states missing: Maine, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin. Hopefully, some of the folks from the Club will volunteer to make these arrows so I can install them the next time I’m down to Taum Sauk.

State Highpoint #45, Kings Peak, Utah

Posted by on September 4th, 2014

In August, we set out once again to attempt to scale Kings Peak, the Utah state highpoint.  This would be my fourth attempt, having been stymied by weather or altitude issues on earlier tries.  We picked a good weather window and succeeded in getting to the top in good order this time.

The illustrated trip report is posted for your reading pleasure. Note that the topo map with GPS track is a big file when viewed at full resolution, 4000 x 5000 pixels and about 17 meg. Also, the Java version of the summit panorama has a full-screen option so you can use all your available display real estate to view that.

Norway, Iceland and Svalbard

Posted by on July 10th, 2014

We took a cruise from Kiel, Germany up to Iceland, Svalbard and Norway (with a stop in the Shetland Islands of Scotland along the way). The full photo album is online for your viewing pleasure.