Archive for August, 2008

Clown Show

Posted: August 28, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in family, travel
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While at the Lane County Fair, we watched the clown show, Jest in Time.  We thought it was pretty funny and even got to share the spotlight.

Ah, good times!

1 Email Account to Rule Them All

Posted: August 28, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in computers, internet
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…& in the darkness bind them?  (Is it a little early for a LotR reference?)

Not quite, but maybe. 

If you are like me, you have an abundance of web-based email accounts.  I have had too many email accounts to count but still use GMail, Hotmail & Yahoo frequently.  It is tedious to check all of these accounts with any consistancy, so messages often do not get responded to in a timely manner.

So, I set out to find a way to pick up all of my mail in one location. 

What I found was IzyMail, a free web-based email forwarding service.  In a nutshell, IzyMail acts as an intermediary between your web-based email and then translates/forwards the emails in a standardized format.  Fortunately, GMail is more standards based than other webmail providers and offers both POP and IMAP, so I can point my GMail account to the IzyMail server to get access to my Yahoo and Hotmail accounts.  Instructions for doing this can be found, here

The caveat, however, is that for this to work, IzyMail must have your webmail username/password.  This may be a deal breaker for many people.  For me, I don’t have anything particularly interesting coming through email anyway, so I am not particularly worried.  The benefit, for me, outweighs the danger.

There is an additional benefit for iGoogle-ers that have added the GMail module.  With GMail gathering all of your email for you in one location, you are able to view all of your email directly from your iGoogle start page!

GMail is my account ruling them all!

Jogging Update

Posted: August 25, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in fitness, health, jogging
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This morning I re-ran my first “Outside Jog”, which is 3.4 miles.

I felt good the whole time and had no knee pain.  I felt so good that I made a conscious effort to pick up the pace.  Nothing crazy fast, just faster than slow.

It is a relief to be knee pain free because, as strange as it sounds, I enjoy jogging now and felt a little lost without it.  Today’s run wasn’t the first one since my recovery, but it has been probably the farthest.

Part of my recovery, can be attributed to my new running shoes, as was suggested by my many internet-based running friends.  I tried nearly every brand on at the store, fully expecting to purchase Nike because they traditionally fit me best and I feel an obligation since I live in Oregon, but… I purchased Asics.  The fit was dead on and the gel made me feel like I was running on a cloud!  At least compared to my old NB’s…  I may now have a new favorite brand.

Power of 10 Workout

Posted: August 22, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in fitness, health
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My Step-Brother recently was up for a visit (before the backpacking trip, so not so recently, I suppose).  We jogged “Pre’s Trail” and talked fitness in so doing.  He told me that he has been using the “Power of 10 Workout” ( and felt it worked pretty well.

You know me… yep, I googled it the other day.  The gist, if you didn’t follow the link above or google it yourself, is that you lift a weight slowly up for 10 seconds and then lower it slowly for 10 seconds.  This is done without stopping and you should lift a weight that can be lifted 6-8 times before fatigue.  The weight lifted is normally less than you would typically lift.

As I thought about this, it occurred to me that, with my recent knee pain issues, perhaps lifting less weight in a slow, controlled manner would be a good thing for me, too.

I used the Power of 10 for my lower body workout this morning.  Results?  Finding the optimal weight is going to take a couple rounds.  Half of the exercises were really difficult but the other half were easy and I ended up doing more than 6-8.  Beyond that, though, my legs were rubbery all day and calves are sore now, so it definitely did something.

I am planning to continue this for the next couple of months.  Hopefully, I will have good news to report back about the Power of 10 soon!

Florence Trip

Posted: August 19, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in family, home videos, travel
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Quick video of our trip to the coast to escape the heat on Sunday.

Vivian Lake Video

Posted: August 16, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in family, home videos, travel
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Here’s a quick video I made from the trip.  It has a few never-before-seen pictures and 3 video clips and features music by Ted Nugent (can you guess the song?)…

Interesting Numbers From Backpacking Trip

Posted: August 13, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in family, travel
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I’ve been back to my computer for a few days now and have had some time to crunch some numbers that I found at least semi-interesting.

Daily Hiking Distances:

  • Friday: 3 miles to camp, plus water gathering and extra exploring, we’ll call it 4 miles.
  • Saturday: 4 + miles round-trip to waterfalls, plus water gathering and cross country bushwhack to the far side of Vivian Lake… we’ll call this 5 miles.
  • Sunday: 3 miles back to the trailhead
  • This makes it roughly 12 miles that we all hiked this weekend!  That surprised me that it was that much.

My Calories Burned (according to and only accounting for a 10-20 lb load (mine was probably about 60 (with Grant’s pack))):

  • Friday-2,200 cals
  • Saturday-2,200 cals
  • Sunday-1,650 cals
  • Total – 6,050 calories burned hiking!

Elevation Gained/Lost

  • Friday: Trailhead at 5, 200′ up to 6,000′ just South of Un-named Lake and then camped at 5,440′.  This is 800 feet gained and then 560 lost.
  • Saturday: 5,440′ down to Diamond Falls at 4,200′ and back to camp at 5,440′.  This is 1,240′ lost and then gained!
  • Sunday is the reverse of Friday.

Do you think that’s interesting?  I am still a little stunned by these results.  Oh, and here’s the best of all… I managed to gain a few pounds while doing all this!

Stupid Google Maps

Posted: August 11, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in Uncategorized

Looks like someone else had problems with Google Maps…

Vivian Lake Backpack

Posted: August 11, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in family, travel
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I got back this afternoon from the backpack to Vivian Lake with Grant, my brother-in-law, Justin, and my nephew, Jacob.  I am a little sore between my shoulder blades but am otherwise feeling good and definitely refreshed.  It always is so rewarding to spend time with nature and family.  While on the trail, I kept a trip journal and I will share it with you below.

Trailhead on NF-23

8/8/08 – 1645 Hiked in from road NF-23; although we had planned to trailhead at NF-510.  Our online maps seemed to be a bit off, so we decided to follow the clearly marked signs to the Vivian Lake trailhead, provided by the forest service.  It was comforting to have signs vs. trusting maps that were already proving to be incorrect.  The bad news is that it added another half mile to our day (3 miles instead of 2.5).  Further bad news, for me, was Grant did not even make it .1 of a mile before his pack became too heavy for him to carry and I carried it the rest of the way for him.  I wore packs front and back.  I am very glad we only had to go 3 miles!  The trip was largely uneventful besides the constant, “Are we there yet?” and “I’m tired!”  The mosquitoes have been very annoying from the start and even the 17.5% DEET in my Jungle Juice doesn’t seem to deter them.  We have seen numerous patches of snow… in AUGUST!!!  We stopped for a lunch break at a little un-named lake with beautiful blue water.

Front & Back Packs

Front & Back Packs

Grant wasn’t too thrilled with the trail mix (doesn’t like raisins and it had a few raisins mixed in with a lot of chocolate chips), but it tasted really good to me.  We followed the lake South awhile before nearly due North along a cascading stram down to Vivian Lake.  Our campsite is a large flat area about 10′ above Vivian Lake and 100′ back from the water.  We have not seen a single other person, which I did not expect but am pleasantly surprised.  When arriving we setup camp and had another snack.  Grant and I had summer sausage and trail mix.  We then walked East and North up to Fall Creek to filter some water.  The water was so cold and fresh.  I am really glad that I bought the water filter (a Katadyn Hiker).  It is much easier and tastier than boiling or using tablets!  Back in camp, Grant fell off of a log he was balancing on (while running) and skinned up his arm and belly.  I made him some pink lemonade and all is well.  Also in camp, we found a Geocache that was hidden only about 10 feet from where we pitched our tents.  I found a snake about 2 feet in length and black with yellow-green stripe while searching for a good potty spot.  Justin and the boys are playing “Go Fish” card game in their tent right now.  I am enjoying a sunny spot on the shore of the lake while writing.

Vivian Lake

Vivian Lake

8/9/08 – 0715 Waking up and thinking about getting going.  Grant got cold in the night (about 3AM) and I showed him how to add more clothes and put on a beanie.  I slept all night with my beanie on, being the hairless wonder that I am.  I listened to the frogs as I tossed and turned.  I finally  hit some real sleep around 1AM.  Well, time to get up, eat, clean up and get ready for today’s hike down to the falls.

1430 Hiked to Fall Creek Falls (about 1 mile from camp) and then on to Diamond Falls (about 2+ miles).  We brought fanny packs, snacks and water but left backpacks at camp.  It was about 2 miles each way and nearly entirely downhill on the way there.  I stopped and got lots of pictures.

Fall Creek Falls

Fall Creek Falls

Grant got pretty tired but made it OK.  We made lunch upon our return.  Grant and I had trail mix, a hunk of papaya (candied) and summer sausage.  We’re all taking an afternoon nap right now and enjoying the sun’s warmth in our tents.  Camp is quiet, except for Justin or Jacob’s snoring.  🙂  I think I slept about an hour, but will probably stay in the tent and read “Ride the Dark Trail” by Louis L’Amour, when I’m done writing.  For now, I am glad the tent is warm, my pads (yes, plural) are comfy and Grant is sleeping peacefully.  (By the way, he went right out for the nap and also at bedtime last night.  Hiking is good for him!)  After the naps, we hiked cross country to the far North end of Vivian Lake by way of the main N-S trail.  High Cascades forests are much easier to bushwhack than Western Oregon forests!  We saw many frogs and I took quite a few pictures of Mt. Yoran.  On our way, we had stashed our water jugs so we could fill them up on our way back.  Filling up the bottles is kind of pleasurable because Fall Creek is so beautiful.  I even think it is beautiful after jumping in, with boots on, to save my bottle adapter piece.  I did end up losing both input and output covers for the pump.  DOH!

8/10/08 – 0800 I probably slept the best, in a tent, last night since when I was a kid and didn’t know any better.  It got colder last night and I finally appreciated my mummy bag and had it zipped up tight!  I dressed Grant up in as many layers as he would allow and he did fine…  Although, he did sit up in the middle of the night (again at about 3AM) and said he was looking at the reflection on the lake (it was absolutely pitch black).  OK… g’night.

Last Picture Before Heading Out

Last Picture Before Heading Out

We are getting dressed and taking baby wipe baths.  Thanks, Allie!  Next, we’ll eat some breakfast before packing up camp and hiting the trail.  It has been a great trip.

2230 – Back Home The return hike started out pretty tough.  Since I had Grant’s pack on my front on the way down this section and couldn’t see very well in front of me, I was a little surprised to see all of the rocks and roots in the path and realized I didn’t fall to my death down to Vivian Lake.  The trail was steep and tiring up to my little un-named lake.  We ate a light lunch and enjoyed the beauty of this lake.  I wouldn’t mind making this a destination next time, I liked it that much.  Plus, it would cut out that gnarly section of trail we had just hiked up.  Grant carried his pack the whole way this time, but was only carrying his clothes, his fanny pack, and his sleeping pad… but he made it and I was proud of him.  We stopped many times along the way to catch our breath and to sip water.  Close to the trailhead was the only place we found any ripe huckleberries.  We saw nobody at all until within 25 yards of the Jeep, where we found a fellow hiker going back for some huckleberries after making back to his car.  We talked with that guy’s wife at the trailhead and she said that they had been at Divide Lake.  I looked it up at home in Sullivan’s book and it looks like a nice hike, although it is 4 miles each way, instead of 3.  Evidently, you can hike .8 miles from Divide Lake up to a ridge where you can literally stand on a divide between East and West Oregon and the views include both directions.  Maybe next year!

Backpacking Trip

Posted: August 8, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in Uncategorized

I’m getting ready right now to take Grant on his first backpacking trip.  For safety’s sake as well as in case you have any interest, we are hiking near Vivian Lake in the Willamette National Forest.  We will be coming home Sunday afternoon.  Here is a link to a map of where we’ll be.

I’ll write more when I get back.  Have a good weekend!