Thommen Classic Altimeter

Thommen TX16 set

Thommen TX-16

Back in 2000 a small local outdoor store called Grand West Outfitters was going out of business. I thought it was the best outdoor store in town and was sorry to see it go, however, during the “going out of business” sales I bought a variety of equipment, at deeply discounted prices, which I still use today. One of the items I bought which I don’t use much anymore was a Thommen Classic altimeter.

The Thommen Classic Altimeter Plus Barometer is an aneroid type. If you’ve ever traveled from a low elevation to a higher elevation with something Continue reading


Collecting . . . Why?


A few beer cans from my old collection

Do you have a collection of anything? I’ve got a collection of old camp stoves, and some old lanterns, too. When I was a kid I collected baseball cards, key-chains I bought on family vacations and beer cans. I still have some of all of those. In a previous blog post I wrote about old things and asked, “Are new things better?”, and that got me thinking about collecting. People seem to look at me with disbelief when I tell them I have over forty antique camp stoves. “What do you do with them?”, they ask, or Continue reading

Are new things better?

Are new things better?

There are two sayings which are almost the same:

They don’t make ’em like they used to“, implying old things are/were better.

And . . .

They don’t make ’em like they used to, and that’s a good thing.”, meaning that old things weren’t necessarily as good as some people seem to think because Continue reading

Solar Eclipse – August 21, 2017


Partial eclipse as viewed from our hill in Wyoming (Photo courtesy of Jeff Gross)

Some months ago I posted a description of a scouting trip for the then upcoming solar eclipse. Well, as most people know, it happened on Monday, August 21st. It was quite an event. A couple of guys I know were all over this thing and   Continue reading

Sand Creek Lakes (mis?)Adventure – 2017



Wildflowers along trail between Music Pass and Upper Sand Creek Lake

One nice and relatively easy backpacking trip is the one to either of the Sand Creek Lakes in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains when approached from Music pass. You will likely want a 4×4 to get to the trail-head as the road can get pretty rough in spots. We went the weekend of June 24th/25th, arriving at the trailhead on   Continue reading

The Astro Compass


Let’s say you’re hiking in the woods, it’s 4pm, and you don’t have a compass or a GPS but want to know which way is north. You could use the analog watch method where you point the hour hand at the sun and bisect the angle between the hour hand and the 12-o’clock mark on the watch to find north and since it’s afternoon you   Continue reading