New Mexico

I passed through this state on my way to the west coast back in November and did a help exchange in Roswell. My host made additions to her farm since I first left, so I felt obliged to make a second stop there. Before getting there, I visited the Aztec Ruins National Monument in Aztec, NM. It was not what I expected but I enjoyed it nonetheless. From there I spent nearly a week in Santa Fe at a unique hostel. There, I met many amazing people who where traveling as well. Each had a different goal and perspective. I’ll never forget the cool fellas from Switzerland Dorrti Fruits . Cruising down the historic Old Santa Fe trail was nice. The city is one of a kind and I would definitely go back some day. I enjoyed sight seeing, listening to many live bands, artists, experienced different cuisine at the local farmers markets, sampled the local beer,  and above all enjoyed the people that I came across.

Leaving there I went south on hwy 285 in 100 degree weather. Being back in Roswell, I enjoyed seeing the many changes that took place on the farm. My host took me and another fellow Helpex volunteer from England out to dinner, a festival and to enjoy a local artist. Next morning, I set off through west Texas to visit with family.

Aztec Ruins Natl. Monument
Santa Fe trail
The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Santa Fe

Short time in Colorado

The time in this state was shorter than I would like to admit. Crossing through the four corners of UT, AZ, NM and CO wasn’t what I expected but a good experience nonetheless. I camped in San Juan National Forest and received a dose of the beauty that Colorado has to offer. I enjoyed witnessing the transition of the bare rock formations beginning to have grass and trees growing on them to eventual forest land as I made my way further into the state. My campsite was serene and lush with a nice river flowing near by 🙂 For some reason unknown, I didn’t take pictures… shucks

The next morning, I went to Mesa Verda National Park and enjoyed a guided tour of the largest cliff dwelling in North America. Cliff Palace was built by the ancient Pueblo Indians and is one of many ancient dwelling areas that the National Park has to offer. After this nice morning and afternoon, I then decided to spend the rest of my day and following morning in Durango before heading to New Mexico.

Utah Beauty

This beautiful state was unique and one of a kind. I enjoyed every single day of my few weeks spent here. My first weekend was filled with entertainment and good food at the 2014 Living Traditions Festival in Salt Lake City. I stayed in Hostels in Salt Lake City and later in Moab. Camping in Dixie National Forest in the southern part while driving through the All American Highway 12 was a delight. Experiencing different climates due to elevation was the only issue while riding my motorcycle and also camping (since my sleeping bag zipper decided to break) The scenery and solitude made up for this temporary discomfort though.

I visited Zion, Bryce, Capital Reef and Arches National Parks while in southern Utah. Breath taking scenery, friendly tourist from around the globe, informative rangers and very very NICE hikes! I also visited a number of petroglyph sites and National Monuments. I have to mention that the locals in the town of Boulder were very friendly and genuine folk. I enjoyed chatting with locals at the town coffee shop. I definitely will stop there again next time I am in the area. This town is situated right off of highway 12 about 20 minutes north of Escalante. I recommend taking the Burr Trail route – it eventually leads to a road that is parallel to Capital Reef National Park. The beauty of this trail will blow your mind! Being in awe due to unique geologic structures, rock formations, mountains as a backdrop at times, twisty, windy roads (unpaved at times) and changes in elevations proved to be the ultimate experience as well as my highlight of Utah. It felt like I was on a different planet while cruising through right at day break as the sun was coming up on the Horizon. Nothing else mattered but taking in my surroundings and enjoying the peace here in the middle of nowhere in south central Utah. I highly recommend that everyone visit Utah at least once in their lifetime! I haven’t even scratched the surface of what this landscape has to offer – I shall be back;) Enjoy these pics

Parowan Gap Petroglyphs
Zion Natl. Park
Tunnel in Zion Natl. Park
Hwy 12
Bryce Natl. Park
Burr Trail
Burr Trail
Burr Trail
Camp in the middle of nowhere
Cruising with the sunrise
Notom-Bullfrog Rd.
Petroglyphs at Capital Reef Natl. Park
Looking down while hiking
The effect of erosion
Hiking in Capital Reef Natl. Park
If you look closely you can see me
Amazing gorge off of Burr Trail
Arches Natl. Park

Beautiful Idaho

I foresee myself coming back to Idaho. Not only because I have family there, but also because I was stunned by the beauty that I found myself being surrounded by on many occasions. While here, I visited with family, camped, went to hot springs, explored, learned and meet wonderful people. I even crossed paths with a friend who I met while in California a few months back! An experience like this has a profound effect to say the least. We met at Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve. There we camped, shared experiences, and explored the remarkable landscape together.

My time in this state was short, but during my stay the experience and beauty and serenity of nature allowed me to ponder many thoughts that lay in my mind. I felt privileged to experience Idaho during the blooming spring season. Watching and feeling the energy while in nature allows one to appreciate the beauty of life. Snow melting, rushing rivers, wildlife scurrying for food, plants and flowers blooming, birds singing, bees buzzing… these are the things that I feel in love with…You realize that everything is connected and part of an intricate system. One relies on another yet there is a sense of uniformity. Life like this has been going on since the beginning of time it seems. We, humans are part of this system as well… my hope is that we may realize, appreciate, and understand the importance of not disturbing any earth system – big or small. Especially since all things are connected.

Kirkham Hot Springs
Scenic Overlook
Lost River Range
Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve

Exploring Northwest Nevada

My journey took me to the wide open and somewhat desolate land of Northwest Nevada. Camping there for two weeks was just what the doctor prescribed. I stumbled across a gem of a camping area. Hot spring, hot shower, wildlife, ponds, beautiful rock formations, big gorge and friendly fellow campers. I meet a few couples that were very kind and genuine. Many of suppers were enjoyed while visiting in their campers. One couple even took me along to go prospecting for gold. I explored as much as I could in between meditation, dips in the hot spring and visits with retired folk.

During one of the days there, I ventured out to Winnemucca, NV to replace my severely damaged rear tire. The weather in this state is somewhat similar to Louisiana, if you don’t like it, just wait a while then it will change once again. During my travel to the Yamaha dealership (~100+ miles one way), the temperature dipped down to the mid-low 30’s. Halfway there the rain/sleet/ice began. Half frozen, tense and damp, I arrived to my destination safely and thankful to have made it in one piece. This makes one gain alot more respect/pleasure for being in a warm and dry environment!
Anyways, I actually had the choice of not one but two hot springs. The second one being a one of a kind “creek” HOT spring where clothing was optional. This is the only hot spring that I have been to that was a little unbearable after 10 minutes. Nonetheless, I enjoyed this experience. My time was short and sweet in this unique state. Maybe next time I visit Nevada, it shall be the southern part – sin city I’m thinking 😉

 Oregon/Nevada state line
 Not too far from camp
 Wide open Nevada
Unique textile shaped rock formation a few miles from camp
 From melted snow
 Snow topped mountains and the bike that got me here
 HOT spring
My friendly burro at Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge

Passing through Oregon

Oregon is a beautiful state. I am sad to admit that I didn’t get to explore as much as I should have. I only explored parts of southern Oregon; Crater Lake National Park being the furthest north that I ventured to :/ But let me tell you, these parts of Oregon were BEAUTIFUL and definitely enough to convince me to come visit again. Bend, OR is in my radar for my next visit to the state.

Anyhow, back to my experience… I set up camp near a beautiful lake in the southern part of Umpqua National Forest and had a good experience while there. This was the first time camping near a mountain with snow on it accompanied by a beautiful lake at the base which was pleasing to wake up to. Meeting and hanging out with a guy going through a midlife crisis while there allowed me to gain a different perspective on a few things in life. A unique experience indeed. Crater Lake National Park was amazing. The drive to and from the park made me feel as if I had transported to a different country – lush landscapes, snow capped mountains, flowing creeks from the snow melting above and all the animals full of life and energy from the warming up spring season. I was indeed happy and didn’t want to leave the beauty I was surrounded by. Nothing else mattered in these moments…

 California/Oregon state line
 My view at southern Umpqua National Forest
 Near my campsite
 Crater Lake National Park
 Watch out!
 Amazing scenery

My experience in Northern California

It has definitely been a LONG time since I sat down and created another post. Due to lack of internet connection, time or simply because I am enjoying the hell out of life and didn’t want to sit in front of a computer – I haven’t been able to post:)
pheww, where to begin… Upon leaving my good friends’ house in Berkeley, I then spent two wonderful weeks at another Helpx location in Ukiah, CA. As always, I was able to meet great folks and enjoyed the stay very much. I then camped in Mendocino National Forest (a very wet week). There, I was able to learn ALOT from a Vietnam Veteran who was also camping in the area. Concepts about diet, life, politics, government, corruption, art, books, food, the future and pretty much everything in between made this very wet week a delight. The next two weeks were spent in Arcata, CA at yet another great Helpx stay. There, I also met great people and learned about gardening, good food, music, earth, growing systems and great living.

After two weeks, the next days were spent camping and welcoming the spring season. Camping among the redwood giants near full flowing creeks surrounded by the blooming flowers and trees was serene and peaceful. I could not think of another place where I wanted to be in time or space.

Nearly four months of my life were spent experiencing the beauty and uniqueness the great state of California had to offer. Many great people shared knowledge and good times with me. For this I am truly thankful. Spending time in nature was sublime and had a healing effect on my mind, body and soul. I foresee myself visiting this wonderful state once again later in life.

Chinatown in San Francisco, CA
 Standing amongst the giants
 Pacific coast
 The coast of Mendocino County
 Watching the sunset while at the mountain tops near Ukiah, CA
 Mendocino, CA Coastline
 Enjoying the sight, smell and sound of waves crashing the rocky coastline of Mendocino, CA
 Had to pass through the famous tree of course
 Kayaking in Arcata Bay, CA
 Enjoying the serenity of a flowing creek
 Blue river water in Northern Cali
 Avenue of the giants

Back on track

After a sudden change of plan,  now I am finally back on track and can continue my journey. The reason why I was laying low in the Monterrey bay area was because, my motorcycle needed minor repairs due to a careless accident. The wonderful staff at  Gilroy Yamaha had me back on the road in no time.

Now my days are being spent in the San Francisco bay area. So far I have seen the Golden Gate Bridge, explored Chinatown (eating awesome cuisine), visited the famous San Francisco curvy road, walked the piers, and explored Berkeley campus, to name a few things. I will be spending about a week or so in Berkeley with a good friend. There is alot more area to cover and explore in this fascinating city. For the time being, here are some photos:) Trust me, there will be more to come. Especially of the Golden Gate Bridge since it was really foggy the day we went.

 Sea Lions at Fisherman’s wharf
Famous curvy road
The best Wonton Noodle Soup in Chinatown
 Pier 39
 Golden Gate Bridge on a foggy day

Laying Low in Monterey Bay area

It has been a long time since the last post. Much has transpired since… Where do I begin?! During the last post, I was in Roswell, NM at a wonderful Helpx hosts’ house. While there for about three weeks, I met great people that were also helpxing and couchsurfing in addition to connecting with the local community. Here is a brief rundown of what transpired up until this point in time:
-CS’ed in Las Cruces, NM; Portal, AZ; Tucson, AZ
-Helpxed at Gold Bar Ranch in Kirkland, AZ
-Spent time with family for the holidays in Yuma, AZ; Spring Valley, CA and Oxnard, CA
-Helpxed at Harmony Hill in Exeter, CA and Rocking 7 Ranch in Priest Valley, CA
-Spent alot of time in Three Rivers, Big Sur, and Salinas, CA
During these past 2-3 months, my memory has been filled with wonderful times and have met amazing people from different states and countries. I have done many activities ranging from exploring caves (at Carlsbad Caverns New Mexico), riding horses, participating in a cattle roundup, hiking beautiful rugged terrain, attending and participating in drum circles around a bonfire, exploring nature, spending a few nights at a monastery overlooking the Pacific Ocean, camping in cold weather, to name a few activities. I will be here for a few more days then I am headed off to San Fransisco. Here are a few photos from my travels:

After the snow passed in Roswell, NM
Near Three Rivers, CA
Beautiful creatures
 While the sun was coming down I felt uplifted as I overlooked the towns of Visalia and Exeter, CA
Beautiful Pacific Ocean near Big Sur, CA

Made it to Roswell, NM

made it to my helpx destination here in Roswell, NM. This is Day 11 (I suppose one day I’ll stop counting). So far I couchsurfed 2 nights in Galveston, camped 1 night in Cuero, couchsurfed 2 nights in San Antonio with separate hosts, camped two nights at Amistad Recreation Area (not to far from Del Rio), camped in Marfa (and witnessed the not so known ‘mystery lights’) and have stayed here in Roswell for the past two days.
I have met nice people along the way and experienced a sticky situation during my second night couchsurfing in San Antonio. Camping for two days in Amistad Recreation Area was beautiful and peaceful; which allowed me to adapt to my temporary new way of life. Being able to witness Marfa’s mysterious lights was weird and definitely a once in a lifetime experience. Unfortunately, since they occur at night and at a distance, there was no way of getting a good picture or video. I had to use binoculars to see them well. Anyways, we are not doing anything today and what seems like the rest of the weekend due to cold weather conditions. Here are a few pictures of my travels…