Monday, January 30, 2012

East Cape 250 Off Road Race

Yesterday was a big day in San Jose.  The East Cape 250 started and finished just outside of town in Guaymitas. We drove down too late to watch Pat Ryan roar by but went to the finish line to congratulate he and copilot Kyle Maisner. They drove their class 1 Chevy powered car to a 6th place finish.  The key word being "finish." These races are tough on every car no matter how well it's built. Every race, many cars fail on the course because of metal fatigue, flat tires and numerous other maladies due to the conditions of off-road racing. Congratulations Pat and Kyle. Well done.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Meet Linda Jo Hunter

My good friend Linda Jo Hunter has agreed to contribute to 'the baja.'  Here is a short bio of Linda.

Author of "Lonesome for Bears, A Woman's Journey in the Tracks of the Wilderness" Lyons Press 2008 and the Co-founder of the International Society of Professional Trackers and an artist. She likes to look at the world from many different perspectives and has circumnavigated the Baja Peninsula 14 times on a small cruise ship as a deckhand.  As a boat Captain her first yacht job was to bring a 98 foot yacht to Cabo San Lucas.  She and her husband Mike travel to Baja for six months in the winter. They both try and play as hard as they can surfing, outrigger canoe paddling, fishing, painting, playing music, tracking animals, and exploring.  Linda's interest in Baja is one of the natural history as it exists today reflecting the history of the people here and how they have lived. 

Linda forgot to mention that she is also an excellent photographer.

Her husband Mike is a luthier among other things. When the bridge on my Tama acoustic guitar (my main guitar for over 35 years) started to come off, he repaired it flawlessly with minimal tools.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Photosynth App for Smartphones

This is my new favorite app. It was developed by Microsoft and is available for FREE! For Iphones, it is available from the app store. After you 'click to view' click and drag with your mouse on the photo to see the complete photo. This is 360 degrees and stitched automatically. The stitching made a funny blurred spot on the guy in the middle of the photo but he was moving. Check it out.  Great app.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Being Human is so Hard . .

Yesterday, at the Lord of the Winds Kiteboarding, Windsurfing contest here in Los Barriles I was walking past the rider's meeting when I overheard someone say, "It's too bad they don't know how to do this."

Trying not to make a snap judgement myself, I walked on by. Over the course of the day, however, I started thinking about humans. We seem to have such a limited view out of the windows of our eyes. On top of that, the little bit of information our brain seems to receive from all of our senses is strongly colored by filters.

After three days of watching the competitors, the committees and volunteers put on an awe inspiring event, a true extravaganza for Los Barriles, I was jarred by these words my ears transmitted to my brain. I did glance at the person, and he seemed not to be one of the competitors, but rather a spectator with his family. But, what can a person really tell in a glance huh?

Why is it human to use our limited view on the world and make judgements about things? I know that by publishing this blog, I am certainly not going to solve this problem for anyone. However, it is a human problem and appears in every part of our lives.

I am a tracker, or at least I like to think I am one. I have been studying animal and human tracking for almost 20 years. I am still learning. One of the things you learn as a tracker, after many years, is that things are not what they seem because our brains try and trick us. You see, the way I figure it, if you have lived to any age of relative wisdom, your mental hard drive is pretty full. (That's why you can't remember names) So your old helpful brain likes to label things and made snap decisions without enough information to save you some thinking effort.

The good news is that if you slow down just a little, and try to pay more attention, you can learn to gather more information. For instance, if you are in a cafe and someone serves you coffee, look at the person. Who knows, perhaps your server is someone who has climbed the North Face of the Eiger and if you look at them you might see something astounding. That is particularly true here in Baja. We are surrounded here by very interesting, experienced, exciting and endlessly fascinating people.

The race committee and the volunteers for the Lord of the Winds contest had enough experience and knowledge to fill several books. It would take a week, at least, to find out what they had all done, where they had been and what they knew . . and that would be just for the race committee.

The comment overheard might have been about something else, who knows, but it did make me wonder how many short sighted judgements I make in a day.

We all do it. I guess this is my way of saying to the Lord of the Winds contest . . WAY to GO. You pulled off another wonderful event in style!

Who am I? Hi, my name is Linda Jo Hunter, author of "Lonesome for Bears, A Woman's Journey in the Tracks of the Wilderness", Lyons Press 2008. The book is about four summer seasons of guiding in Alaska at a remote lodge where we took folks out to see Alaskan Brown Bears eating salmon and living in the wild. I am also a plein air oil painting artist and the co-founder of the International Society of Professional Trackers. I will be commenting on this blog from time to time about Baja stuff. Look for some Baja animal tracks and photos soon.
I welcome comments, by the way, about anything.

If that made you curious you can look at my webpage:

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Lord of the Winds - Day Three

Lord of The Winds day three saw some lighter winds but the committee was able to complete several rounds of course racing for all competitors. The water was beautiful, the air was warm and spectators came out to watch. This photo is of the Expert Kiters, just before their start . . and, just as I was wondering why they don't tangle kite lines, two kites twisted together bringing their riders down in a splash. But, being the experts that they are it was just minutes before the riders got them untangled while still in the water, and took off upwind heading to the mark. Tomorrow, wind willing, the big race will take place where everyone heads upwind almost all the way to the pyramids and then back to a screaming finish right in front of the contest site. I will see you there! Linda

PS The RoadRunner has some great baked stuff in their booth. Yum.