Monday, March 27, 2023

Here We Go Again

We've had 3 days of sun. I've almost finished the installation of the walkway in the garden area of the back yard. 

From where the pathway ends almost to the top of this picture, it extends to the right out to the gate. I'll do a picture when it's finished hopefully a little later this morning. 

I'm trying to beat the next storm that's coming tomorrow. This is a somewhat unique storm as it's two low pressure systems converging into one and then slamming us. One from the North bringing cold air, one from the South bringing moisture. What does that mean? A whole lot of rain down country where we live and a whole lot of snow upcountry. Just when those around the Tahoe area are finally digging out, they're about to be buried again. 

So, have I been fishing, magnet fishing, or metal detecting? Nope. 

I've been trying to finish the pathway whenever we've had a clear day. Unfortunately I just don't have the energy to "get'r done" as Larry the cable guy would say. I can put in about 3 hours and then I'm shot for the day. Here's an example: Yesterday I went to Lowes and picked up 3 more bags of sand. I'm using playground sand for leveling the pavers. Each bag weighs 50 pounds dry, but I haven't seen a dry bag for weeks. When they're wet just from moisture in the air, they weigh about 80 pounds. Kind of hard to move around one handed. My other hand is on my cane. So after I got the 3 bags into the back yard via the Gorilla Cart (you should get one) I installed 4 more pavers. At that point, I was done for the day. 

Now I'm at the point where I only have a small area to cover. Since the pavers are 18x18, I have to "cut" them down to size. I'm not paying $60 or $70 dollars for a saw blade to cut two or three concrete pavers, so I'm using the old chisel method. Works great splitting them in half along the crease, but doesn't work at all cutting them down to a 7 inch x 18 piece. Subsequently I've demolished 3 as they split exactly where I don't want them to. 

So on to Plan B. I'll section them off with edging and fill in the small space with gravel. The Gorilla Cart will roll over it and so will the green recycle can. Then I can move the last planter and get the watering system on line. It's getting close to planting time. 

Maybe I can even sneak in a day of fishing soon. 

Stay tuned.      

Monday, March 13, 2023

Oh That Damn Rain

OK, I'm sick of rain. If you follow National News, California has washed into the ocean. 

Once again the Atmospheric River is bearing down on us. Here in beautiful downtown (and wet) Jackson, it's due to start raining, again, about 2pm. It's really sad when you're elated about being able to run to the supermarket without getting soaked, like I did this morning. And yes, I was elated. 

Woman who checked me out said they haven't had electricity for about 3 weeks and they were down to the last 2 gallons of gas for their generator. They were finally able to dig out and get to town this morning. 

We're fortunate that our house is above the flood plain. We used to live upcountry. Glad I live in town now. 

Remember I mentioned the apartments around the corner that flooded a while back. I noticed all the cars are parked on the street and not in the parking lot this morning. 

You've got to feel for those that are in the flood plain. Here's a couple photo's I picked up off the net. 


No matter how many times you tell them that cars do not run under water, they still try. I know this from personal experience. 

Oh, and let us not forget the mud slides that come with a bunch of rain. 

The picture above is in Plumas County. About a 3 hour drive North of Sacramento. 

See, an SUV submarine. 

Orange County (Southern California). they don't listen either. Ah hell, I can get through there. 

The one thing people don't realize is that the differentials on a car/truck/whatever have a breathing port. You get in deep enough and water seeps into your gear box and next thing you know, you're in the auto repair shop with a big repair bill.  

The California Government has finally had an epiphany. Maybe we should trap some of that water and replenish the depleted ground water. Duh!

OK, enough whining. The Shack Nasties have arrived. 

Stay Tuned. 

Monday, March 6, 2023

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

OK, we've been hit hard with the rain and snow. 

Jackson's elevation is 1200 ft. above sea level.

In California you measure the amount of snow you'll get by the elevation you're standing at. 

My son Ken lives at 3200 ft. He got about a foot, as you can see in the photo below on 2/27/2023. 

On the other hand, we at 1200 ft. got dusted as you can see in the 3 photo's below. 

Not to be outdone, the passes (Donner Summit on Highway 80, Echo Summit on Highway 50, and Carson Pass on Highway 88 got about 10 feet. But keep in mind as you read further, that the passes are at or around 7000 ft. The higher you go, the more snow you get. 

So then I get an email from my son showing me his truck on 3/1/2023 after he had cleared the driveway the previous day. Damn good thing he's a lot younger than me. I couldn't shovel that. 

But, we got our share. When we woke (that's not the political bullshit that the Republicans are throwing around) up on 3/1/2023 we had about 2 inches on the ground that fell overnight as the little bit from 2/27 was gone. 

The passes are currently sitting at about 15 or more feet of snow. Many are stranded and can't get out. One would think the snow plows would come by and clean the roads, but a lot of those people live on dirt roads way back in the nowhere and their roads have never seen a snow plow. Then again some of those at, say 7000 ft. are having trouble just finding their buried vehicles.

See what I men. That's somebody's house.

Which brings us to today. 7am this morning the sun (I think it was the sun as we've not seen the sun in 
about a millennium or seems like it) was shining only to be replaced by clouds and rain by about 2pm. this afternoon. 

According to the National Weather Service Guessers, we can expect some type of rain everyday through March 20th and who knows how far beyond. 

That type of forecast is putting a major crimp on my 3 hobbies (fishing, Metal Detecting and Magnet Fishing). I've purchased a metal detector to go along with my magnet fishing gear. If you've watched any of these guys or gals on YouTube you'll notice they also use a "pinpointer". It's a hand held metal detector about the size of a banana. I got one of them too. I'm ready and raring to go, if it will ever stop raining. 

The picture below is a Pancky model PK0075. Most say this is a good one for a rookie. That's me. It got 4.3 out of 5 rating by 3144 people. It has all the goodies for finding metal from a pop top to a gold nugget using the all metal mode. They also say it can find a quarter at the depth of 10 inches. Must be the reason they included a cool little shovel in a belt holster.       

Maybe I'll find something that qualifies as treasure. I've already found a bunch of "junk" magnet fishing including the top portion of a fishing rod and an active 410 shotgun shell. Who knows what's around the next corner.  

So stay tuned for the life and times of a gimping old guy. 

Friday, February 24, 2023

The Snow

If you've been watching the news, as usual the media has blown everything out of proportion. 

The local weather guesser said we, here in downtown Jackson, could expect the following snow. 

Wednesday 1 to 2 inches. 

Thursday 2 to 4 additional inches. 

Over night last night an additional 2 to 4 inches. 

Here's what we got:

Wednesday about 7 flakes. The time it took to get from the couch in the living room to the kitchen window, it was already gone. 

Thursday about 12 flakes and then a little later in the day an additional 24 flakes. 

Last night: nothing. A lot of rain. 

That said, I just wanted to let you know I'm having a really hard time with the cold this year. I don't know if the last 6 months of last year and the surgeries have anything to do with it, but I barely do anything outside. 

I've managed to get some of the garden moved. I did mention in the last post about why we're moving it down to flat ground. 

Once I moved the boxes then I had to put in a walkway to roll the green recycle container and the Gorilla Cart back and forth. This photo was on 2/18. I've added some more toward the gate since then. 

Gorilla Cart. If you don't have one, they are really cool AND they dump. We use it for everything. 

If you look at the pavers in the stacks, each one weighs between 25 & 30 pounds. I can manage about 3 rows per day. Put some sand down, put the paver down, add a little sand here and there until level with the previous paver. The width of the walkway is 2 1/2 pavers. 

I have a lot more to do.

So, since it's been raining since Wednesday and is supposed to (according to the Weather Channel) continue through March 6th. Yard work and any chance of fishing (magnet or otherwise) is on hold.    

Thanks to all those who stop by. I wish I had more about fishing to report, but Summer is coming, the camping schedule is growing and I'll be fishing as much as I can then. 

Stay tuned. 

Sunday, February 5, 2023

Down For The Count

Over the past couple years, I've been dealing with my left hip going South on me. I've been able to work around it doing yard work, fishing once in a while, and throwing my magnet. 

On previous visits to my regular doctor, she's been beating me into reducing this drug and that drug. On January 17th she wanted me to stop taking one of my pain meds, but before I did, she wanted me to consult with my Cardiologist the next day for his opinion. 

On January 18th I met with him and he suggested I use this pain med only when I feel more pain than Tylenol (6 a day) can stop. 

First couple days it worked well. Then on January 30th (last post) I went to Sunrise Bridge and threw my magnet for a while. When I got home I continued moving our garden off the hill down to the flat ground. Both me and my wife were having trouble falling every once in a while because of the uneven ground. At our age, this is a no-no. 

About 2 days later, all of a sudden, my right leg went South. Was it from not taking the pain med? I don't think I did anything to cause it to hurt when I went to Sunrise Bridge. It was an easy access as you can see in the photo's from the last post. Maybe it was doing the garden move. Who knows. 

But, now I have both legs in pain and it's extremely hard to walk let alone go fishing or magnet fishing. 

For now, I'm going back to the original pain med and see if that helps, but there won't be any fishing of any kind for a couple weeks. 

So check back in a week or so and I'll update when the pain med has a chance to take hold. 

Stay tuned.  

Monday, January 30, 2023

He's Been Out And About

Here it is, Monday morning January 30th. 

I've spent a lot of time recovering from the six surgeries last year and watching YouTube videos on magnet fishing. I've done a little previously, mostly at Upper Lake. 

While I was incapacitated, I made up a list of places I wanted to throw my magnet. My old one is a 500# magnet and the new one is 1000# capacity. Now don't get confused with 500# & 1000#. That's not what they weigh, that's their "grabbing" capacity. Let me narrow that down a little. 500# capacity can find metal objects down to, say 3 or 4 inches. 1000# capacity can find objects down to, say 5 or 6 inches and grab ahold of them. Hopefully that helps a little. 

OK, Monday morning. Temperature 36 degrees. Frost on everything as shown in the picture below. That's my drought resistant front yard. Bark nuggets, no grass. 

The first place on my list was Sunrise Bridge over the American River. Why here you ask. You did ask didn't you? This particular place is where rafts in mass are launched during the Summer months. I figured somebody has to have lost something there. 

The bridge in the picture is a foot bridge from Sunrise Park over the river to Sacramento Bar Park. 

The gentleman in the picture below is trying his luck for those elusive Steelhead that are coming up the river to spawn. You know, the fish of "10,000 casts". By the way, you know that after about 30,000  casts, I quit fishing for them. Never caught a one.  

So, back to magnet fishing. I started next to the foot bridge and worked my way down past where the gentleman was fishing. Let me first say, the water in the river, this is the American River, is really cold. I mean really cold. And remember I was pulling in a rope soaking wet with really cold river water. 

I think I covered the area pretty well. I'd cast to the right, straight out, and to the left. Move down a little and repeat. I got absolutely NOTHING. Not even an amount of black sand that should have been on the magnet. 

If you're not familiar with black sand, it's mostly iron filings with a mixture of other minerals here and there, but all you see is the iron. Here is the enigma. Like that word? The dictionary describes it as:
"a person or thing that is mysterious, puzzling, or difficult to understand". 

What's hard to understand is the American River is where gold was discovered at Sutter's Mill on January 24, 1848 and the gold rush was on. There is a rule to finding gold. One can have black sand without any gold, BUT one can not find gold without black sand. So not finding any black sand (which is very magnetic) on the American River is extremely strange. I mean, I can go out into my back yard and drop the magnet on the ground and it will pick up black sand. That's how prevalent black sand is in this area. I'm at a loss.

This whole area was mined back in the day. The miner used what was called the Natomas Dredge. 

The dredge would go up one side of the river and down the other extracting the gold as they went. There are many places in the area where one can find these "hills" or mounds of gravel called tailing piles. 

There is a story about two guys using a metal detector on the tailing piles in Folsom and found a couple million dollars of gold. How did it get missed? The dredges used a wooden sluice box and the sides would warp leaving a hole for the gold to drop out of it to the ground. Then more gravel would fall out of that same hole and cover it.   

Did I mention the water was really cold? At this point, my hands were red bordering on white from being cold. 

Since I didn't find anything at Sunrise Bridge my next spot is the Cosumnes River at Dillard Road. Easy enough to find as it's on the way home. The problem I ran into there is parking. There are no parking/tow away zone signs on both sides of the street for a half mile in both directions. I'm sorry, but it's a little far for me to gimp myself from a half mile away. I'll have to scratch this one off the list. 

I think I'll have to get out to Camanche later this week.     

Stay tuned. 

Saturday, January 14, 2023

January 2023

Here we are, a brand new year. 

I already have my fishing license for this year. 

I have all my gear ready to throw into the truck. 

The downcountry lakes await me. The lakes up the hill are under about 10 feet of snow. 

I've pretty much recovered from the surgeries last year.

Now all I need is for it to STOP raining. We've had one day without rain since December 26th. Yes, it is raining outside as I type this with the prospect of rain through Thursday the 19th. 

We haven't had any flooding. Can't say as much for the folks at the apartments around the corner. New Years Eve flooded the parking lot as it sits beside the drainage creek (which over flowed) for the local neighborhood. I counted at least a dozen cars under water.  

Then it looks like I might be able to do some fishing. Weather Channel says no rain for 9 days after the 19th. 

Lakes should be full. 

Lakes should be muddy, for a while at least. 

Trout fishing is on the horizon. 

Creeks and rivers should slow down. 

Magnet fishing is on the horizon.

Stay tuned.