Friday, May 27, 2022

Memorial Day Weekend

Here we are, the unofficial start to Summer 2022. Memorial Day Weekend. 

I was sitting on the couch scrolling through YouTube Channels and came across the 1949 movie Sands of Iwo Jima with the “Duke” John Wayne.

That just started my brain thinking “I wonder if my dad was at the landing at Iwo. So I pulled up Wikipedia for the USS William P. Biddle APA8 Attack Transport. My dad was a CPO (Chief Petty Officer) on the ship until he had a heart attack near the end of WWII and retired.

USS William P. Biddle

The ship wasn’t at Iwo, but it was at Tarawa. I’ll get to that later.

Alan at Small Stream Reflections (who recently passed away as you all know) always did a very heartwarming post on Memorial Day. Those who served, know how heart wrenching it is to lose a fellow service member. I don’t have those feelings as I was never in the military. Not that they didn’t try to draft me in 1965 at the beginning of the Vietnam War, in fact they tried 5 different times.

So I thought I’d just put a little post out to remind everyone that Memorial Day isn’t about camping, mall sales, or that special deal at the local auto mall you see 40 or 50 times every hour on TV.

It’s about those who gave all.  

Back to Tarawa (the Gilbert Islands Campaign). The assault on Tarawa cost the lives of 990 Marines. Those are who you should remember on Memorial Day.

My Dad

My dad was also at the assault of the Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands, and the Philippines. Many lives were lost in each of those campaigns. They are who you should remember on Memorial Day.

And it’s not just about WWII, its about all the military personnel who have lost their lives, male & female, in the service of their country.

Here’s a short list of those we lost by war:

WWI – 117,000

WWII – 405,399

Korea – 54,260

Vietnam – 58,220

Gulf War – 219

Afghanistan – 1921

These are the people we should remember on Memorial Day Monday 5/30/2022

Stay Tuned.

Monday, May 16, 2022

A New Place To Camp

We planned our first camping trip of 2022 to Hendy Woods State Park. By the way the crow files, 214 miles and a little over 4 hours travel time if in warp speed. Rambling along I-80 to highway 37 across the North Bay and then up Highway 101 to Cloverdale. Off 101 and along highway 128 with the reminder of the destroyed tire and rim on one of our previous trailers, through Boonville (they speak a different language. They call it Boontling.) to the park. Last time I think is around 6 hours. 

Last time I filled up the truck, it was $90.00 and I still had a 1/4 tank. This trip would have easily cost the better part of $300.00 in gas plus the $188.00 camping fee. We decided that was way too much when all this trip is, is mainly wine tasting. Don't get me wrong, I've got nothing against wine tasting (keep in mind I don't drink) except spending nearly $500.00 just to get there when we can go around the corner, so to speak, and wine taste in the Shenandoah Valley. 

So we cancelled that trip and made reservations at an RV campground off Highway 4 in the little town of Arnold, California. If you've followed this blog, you know that White Pines Lake is in Arnold. Nice little kayaking lake, stocked Trout in the Winter, and a plethora of small sunfish. 

Got there at 1pm on Thursday and set up the trailer. Elevation about 5000 ft. For those not familiar with the California terrain, the higher you go, the colder it gets. The high on Thursday was about 60 degrees. 

Here are a couple of photos for your enjoyment. 

 Then came Thursday night. Our trailer is rated "all weather" so were supposed to be able to camp in "all weather". What we forgot was to set the heater so it didn't get really cold. Outside Thursday night I'd estimate it got to the low 30's. We froze even under a blanket, comforter, and a quilt. Didn't make that mistake Friday and Saturday nights. 

With the trouble I have getting around, we spent Friday just hanging out and enjoying the quiet that you get in the mountains. Watched a movie (Men In Black International) Friday night. 

Saturday we went up to Alpine Lake to see if my new idea about fishing would work. Let me explain. Since I can't carry fishing rods, tackle box, chairs, rod holders, and assorted snacks, I bought, for fishing and for working in the yard, something called a Gorilla Cart. 

Looks exactly like this. 


The plan was to pile in all the items listed above and with my cane in my right hand, the handle in my left, wander down to the lake and soak some Power Bait. 

We found one parking lot open. Half the parking spaces (about 12) were full with people doing what ever they were doing and the other row 5 feet deep in snow. Needless to say, couldn't find a place to park because every other tiny space had a "No Parking" sign. Can't say I didn't try. 

So we threw in the towel and went back to the campground. Saturday was nice, almost 80 degrees. Read some, snoozed some and listened to the dogs barking and the children screaming. 

Ah, typical weekend camping. Up and back on a 1/2 tank of gas. 

If you haven't seen this, how's this for a Sunfish?

I haven't given up trying to fish with this gimpy body. 

Stay tuned. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Kautz Glacier. Hey, Kautz That's Me

This morning when I logged in, there was a picture of Mount Rainier National Park in the state of Washington. 

My first thought was "Isn't that where the Kautz Glacier is?"

The Kautz Glacier is a narrow glacier on the southern flank of Mount Rainier in Washington State named for August Kautz, who is sometimes credited for the first ascent of Mount Rainier. 

First about the glacier. It covers 1.8 square miles and contains 7.8 billion cubic feet of ice. 

The Upper Kautz glacier is at 11,700 feet and extends down the Kautz Chute to the Lower Kautz Glacier at about 10,800 feet. Melt water from the glacier drains into Kautz Creek Falls and then into Kautz Creek which is a tributary of the Nisqually River.


Now a little bit about August Kautz. Actually August Valentine Kautz born 1/5/1828 in (depending where you look) Ispringen, Baden, Germany or Gemeinde, Baden, Austria. 

Did I mention that I'm DNA connected to him?

August was also a Union Calvary General in the American Civil War. Quite a well know military person. Add to that, his brother was Rear Admiral Albert Kautz who served in the Union Navy during the Civil War.


Both August and Albert are buried at Arlington Cemetery in Virginia. 

Hey, you find out a lot of cool stuff doing genealogy. Never know who you're going to be related to. Might also find out the person who you thought was your grandfather for 75 years, isn't. 

Till next time. Stay tuned.