While hiking over the weekend I was going about my regular routine, hunting for interesting bits of wood and fallen trees. My wife and I expedited the return to the car with an adventuresome detour from the beaten path. A mushroom or fungus growing on the base of a tree trunk caught my eye. While hiking in the woods I spot many Artists Fungus and Turkey Tail mushrooms, what I spotted was definitely neither of those.
Lucky for me I was carrying a trusty mushroom pocket field guide, my eye immediately found the bright orange-yellow illustration. I glanced down to read “Chicken of the Forest”. Certainly, I thought, this brightly colored thing was poisonous. I went on to read more, ” Choice edible”. What?
Out came my pocket knife and a clean doggie poo bag; I went to work harvesting the goods. When we returned home I fired up some olive oil in a pan, cleaned the fungus and dropped it in the hot oil with a dash of salt. After a few minutes of cooking my wife and I decided to add a splash of my homemade raisin wine for extra flavor. Delicious! I should have taken it all. Hopefully another hiker will be fortunate enough to stumble on the treat.
It is not very often I find myself in the position to collaborate on extracurricular creative endeavors. When the chance presents itself to do so I generally jump on the opportunity. With Halloween around the corner a crazy talented friend of mine has decided to create a custom made costume for his daughter. Only one thing stood in his way, the ability vacuum form plastic sheets over his solid sculpted costume parts.
After doing a little research on the subject and deciding on the size of the apparatus I went to work. I made a wooden box using scrap wood from around the workshop. The box has a hole cut on two sides for the insertion of vacuum hoses. The vacuumed air is pulled through perforations in the top of the box where the sculpted costume pieces are placed.
A separate wooden frame holds a sheet of plastic which is put in the oven. The heat softens the plastic and a soft belly is formed thanks to gravity. The soft plastic in the frame is removed from the oven and positioned over the vacuum form box while the vacuums are running. Vacuum action sucks the soft plastic down and around the items placed on the perforated surface. When we tested the apparatus it worked wonderfully. With my portion of the project complete I look forward to see the completed creation of my friend.
To round out my blog postings regarding my Colorado River dory boat trip I decided to share some of the audio I captured. Audio is often more immersive and interesting than photographs or video. Properly appreciated audio surrounds and envelops the listener with new environments. The recordings I’m sharing are of nature sounds, sounds around camp and entertaining music provided by our guides.
Speaking of our O.A.R.S. guides, they worked very hard – but made it seem like a breeze. “Grand Canyon River Guides is a passionate association of folks who know and love the Grand Canyon like no other. Some of us are guides, many are not.” If you download this audio, or if you simply want to make a difference, please make a donation to Grand Canyon River Guides
Preview & Download Sounds of the Colorado Dories for free.