Thursday, December 8, 2016

Visit to Helinox and DAC HQs in Seoul Korea!

 Visiting Helinox and DAC in Seoul Korea!

like most overseas trips, this one started with the classic traveler's breakfast: a scone and a strong cup of coffee (in this case a triple shot-in-the-dark)
It's great beta, flying over the Rockies, checking out the terrain below for future trips...
Denver (left), Mount Evans (far right)
Grand Mesa overlooks Grand Junction (right), Powderhorn ski resort (left of center)

...and it can be a little depressing seeing the devastation from the oil and gas industry. 
each of these clearings is several acres in size but they have just one tiny well per clearing. obviously there was no thought to minimize impact or road cuts - they just trashed this entire mesa top

But I digress
Got into Seoul late and such was my state that I could only marvel at the vast array of buttons in the elevator. Oooooooooo

The Dormy Inn

Sweeping breakfast buffet

On the drive to DAC & Helinox, I can see the 5th tallest building in the world in the distance but can't get a decent photo.  It's TALL. These are normal...

Always building in Seoul
the crane business must be insane

This trip's first meeting with my good friend Jake Lah, owner of DAC.

I first met Jake in the early 90's, looking for new tent poles for Kelty (I was the Kelty designer). During our first meeting Jake showed me two sketchbooks filled with tent designs. He was a tent designer, not just a pole maker. We used his poles immediately and it became clear that it was his desire to make new and better tents that drove his pole innovations. Now some 25-odd years later, it's simply a fact that Jake has been the inventor of the vast majority of the tent innovations the world's tent markets have seen. 

We talked a lot (as we do).

Jake next to his first non-tentpole project - the project that gave Helinox its name - telescopes with super-sophisticated controls (before everyone else did it)
Helinox time!
the Helinox Creative Center
my host, Young Lah, owner of Helinox, with one of his managers, Jenn

cots and chairs
tone-y digs

cot print: baroque?

cot print: just plain out there

cot print: Mexican surrealist 
I love it: the fabric is almost like a rug

cozy chairs

more plush rug fabric on a chair - I like it

cup holder with hula tassels. your cup holder doesn't have hula hassles? really?

more kinds of poles than anyone thought. my favorite's the Causway GL145 (not just beCAUSe of the name)

LINE FRIENDS: Sally & Brown

Just in time for the Helinox Users Group (HUG) gathering for the launch of the LINE FRIENDS line.

The winners of the Helinox calendar contest had their photos on display on the third floor 

very different with a crowd of people in the room

Jake enjoyed the photo exhibit

Meetings done, it's time to get back and glue myself to the computer once again...

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

November Ski out the back door and secret rigorous training formula for the kids

It finally snowed in Boulder! Whew. We count on an easy November ski and it's been kind of a nail-biter. The Daily Camera said it was the latest first snow in recorded history.

For the record, I have no idea exactly why the kids wanted umbrellas. They saw them in the closet as we were fishing out our ski boots and... the rest is history. Apparantly.

O was entranced

N beginning to understand that carrying an umbrella while skiing isn't so easy.
I had to admit it was actually kinda nice having umbrellas.

The next day O got his November ski in. At first, he was more interested in the poles - and why not?

My turn: 5.6 miles on bike and open space trails. Started at 25˚F with excellent glide and a beautiful day. By mile 2.8 the temperature was rising and the skis were repeatedly caking with ice. Oh well.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

N bikes 2 1/2 miles!

N is a great Strider biker but when it came to regular bikes, he just didn't get the whole pedaling thing. His balance was great from the Strider but he was having no fun with his feet coming off the pedals and constantly hitting the (reverse-pedal) brake. We tried a couple of second-hand bikes and neither worked for him.

a Strider bike - 6.5 lbs (3 kg)
We figured that the weight of the bikes was a problem. These little bikes, like most kids bikes, are ridiculously heavy – 19 pounds 8.6kg). It would be like having an adult bike that weighed a hundred pounds. So we broke down and bought him a new Specialized Hotrock that weighed, well, 19 lbs but it was a much bigger bike and had a hand brake.  To get anything lighter would have cost about double - yikes!

both these bikes weigh 19 pounds
Funny thing, it came with training wheels and we left them on for a few weeks. They made it so he couldn't lean into a turn and they slowed the bike down erratically on gravel trails. But, it worked to give him the confidence and pedaling practice he needed. When we took the training wheels off, he was zooming around in no time.

This was his first longish bike ride without the trainers. He nailed it!
working the uphill gravel

around Harper lake

basking in success midway through the bike

By the time next Spring rolls around, he's going to be ready for some Moab and Fruita action!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Green River Raft trip post 9, Desolation Canyon & Gray canyon (9 days, 9/24-10/2, ~3500 cfs)

A short float to the takeout.

a familiar scene
helmets on for the last few riffles and rapids
Gently oaring on flat water.

and it was over. we spent more time packing and unpacking that we did on the river this day
R: can you figure out what massive manipulation I did to this photo? hint: compare to the photo above it
erosion pattern on Gunnison Butte overlooking the takeout at Swaseys