Subaru XV Crosstrek, Perfect Vehicle for the Outdoorsperson?

Back in January, my wife and I placed an order for a Subaru XV Crosstrek Premium with the CVT and a couple of the smaller options. We timed the order knowing it would take probably 4 months for delivery, anticipating that my car would be paid off before we got the car, giving us only one car payment and possibly a little time where we don’t have any payments. We took delivery of our Crosstrek today and timed it so our first payment is not due until June. My car has just under 50,000mi on it, so we should be able to pay off the Subaru before I need another. And with it being a Honda, it sure would be nice to get even longer out of it so we can enjoy a couple years at least without any payments.

Offseason Maintenance Projects

It’s getting close to the “offseason” for many outdoor activities.  Or, at least, the shorter days and holiday business tends to reduce our enjoyment of some of these things.  It also happens to be a good time to take care of any maintenance you might need to take care of.  Several years ago, I made use of the winter offseason to sew a couple of down quilts.

Ticks, Ticks, and more Ticks

It’s well into tick season and for many, getting outdoors means dealing with ticks.  Not only are they annoying little creepy-crawlies, they are also vectors for many different diseases.

According to the CDC, the following disease/tick species associations are notweworthy in the United States (they are not necessarily exclusive to these particular tick species and there are likely to be more diseases, too):

Nosara, Costa Rica March 2012

This trip has been in the planning stages for quite some time. The wife and I paid a visit to the Costa Rica Yoga Spa in Nosara, on the Nicoya Peninsula. It’s an outstanding resort, and the food was incredible. The retreat was organized and taught by one of my local yoga instructors, so I knew most of the people in attendance. There were a couple people there I had not met before, however, and enjoyed spending time with them.

Davy Crockett Paddling Trail

The stretch of the Neches River between Anderson’s Crossing and Route 7 has been designated the Davy Crockett Paddling Trail recently. I paddled this stretch of the river a few years ago when I first moved to the area. The river was running high then (normal for this time of year). This year, it’s not running so high. My paddle hit the bottom on several occasions, but the water level is still plenty high for canoeing. I wouldn’t run a motor boat down this stretch anytime soon, though. Even at this pretty low level, it was much clearer of debris than I had anticipated. Other stretches of the river force you out of the boat often to clear downed trees. Someone keeps this stretch of river clear enough that you can always find a way to paddle around an obstacle.

Angelina River Canoe Trip – February 2011

The SFA Outdoor Pursuits planned this trip for the stretch of the Angelina River between Highway 63 and Martin Dies Jr. State Park. I was stoked to do this trip. I’ve done a decent bit of paddling, but I’ve never camped out of my canoe before. My wife and I signed ourselves up and hoped for the best.

Canoeing the Angelina River South of Route 7

Today I took a short paddle trip with the wife along the Angelina River south of Route 7. To paddle it one-way downriver from here would take you all the way to US 59, and neither of us were up for an overnight canoe camping trip today. Instead, we did an out-and-back. The river is slow enough that paddling upriver was not a problem in the slightest.

Garmin Oregon 450

Yeah, I’m not new to the game here. This GPS has been reviewed all over the internet already.

But, I decided that the Edge 705 wasn’t really for me. Here’s why:

  • I hated the little joystick on the etrex series, and I didn’t like it any better on the Edge.

June 26th and 27th funness

I got out a bit this weekend.  My mileage isn’t super high yet, but I’m getting out and getting exercise.  On the 26th, I got a night ride in on the bike.  We’re trying for a regular Saturday night at 8pm group ride time.  Unfortunately, my main riding buddy couldn’t make it since his wife was out of town and he had to watch the kids.  I was there, though.  Nobody else showed up, which turned out to be a good thing.  The batteries on my headlamps were BOTH low (the indicator light was now glowing red instead of green), and I wasn’t sure how long to expect them to last.  So, I ran on one light, but kept both batteries on me so that in case one of them died, I’d have the extra to get back to the trailhead.

New Garmin Handheld GPS Receivers

There’s been some buzz lately about some new GPS receivers that look like they’re going to replace the venerable GPSMap 60 and 76 series models. Garmin has so far confirmed a 78, the replacement for the 76. As of now, there are only just rumors about a replacement to the 60, a supposed 62. GPSFix has some informative posts worth reading if you’re interested in this sort of thing. There’s a post for the 78, and one for the expected 62.