Jul 28, 2007

full philmonty

The best thing about my trek to Philmont Scout Ranch was that I got to do it with my son Zak. As first-time Philmonters, we went through a host of physical and mental challenges. It was a blast - but 12 days in the back, back country is long time away from the comforts of home. I was so proud of Zak. His idea of quality time is playing video games or watching movies with his old man - so hiking 70+ miles around the rugged New Mexico mountains was a way out of his comfort zone. He never complained. We won't do another 12-day hike anytime soon, but it was really great doing this one together.

It was a lot of fun having Scoutmaster Mitch Yulich on our crew. This was his fifth trip to Philmont. Mitch likes to say he was born 100 years too late - this guy is a real mountain man. Most people couldn't even walk with Mitch's two bad knees - but he never stopped and always packed way more than his share. Thanks Mitch.

Awesome scenery, great hiking, tons of beef jerky and enough stories to last for many years. It was truly the Full Philmonty. The photos below are some of my favorites from the trip. I wasn't able to pack my Nikon gear - so these are all taken with my new little Panasonic Lumix. We have hundreds of photos on Zenfolio - so if you'd like to see more, just drop me a note, and I'll send you the password. Cheers.

I'm not a big fan of extreme heights, so climbing to the top of the Tooth of Time scared the crap out of me. It was great getting to the top, but coming down was harder than going up. Front row from left: Peter, Doug, Zak, Evan. Back row: Joey, Jordan, Ryan (short guy), Mitch, Jim, Stephen.

This is my favorite photo from the trip. Relaxing on rock chairs on Mount Phillips.

Zak taking a nap on top of Mount Phillips.

This is called a Pilot-to-Bombardier. It's a two-hole pooper (in case you want to poop with a buddy). You don't get these kind of views from the crapper at home.

I gave up my nasty chewing tobacco habit for the trip. So I took along a hefty supply of Nicorette gum. I didn't want any trash, so I took the gum out of the foil wrappers and bagged them. By some Nicorette magic - the 30 pieces of gum became one big, giant glob-of-gum. Mitch and I shared the glob.

Our view from the Tooth Ridge.

Looking out from Mount Phillips.

One of the many beautiful views at Philmont.

Zak and I as we cleared the tree line to Mount Phillips. This climb really sucked the life out of you, but the view from the top was worth it.

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