Saturday, June 30, 2012

News: CO Fire. Egyptian Fence. World Scene. RESTORE Act. KY’s Big Sandy. Ocean’s Acidification. Marine Reserve. Pets & Fireworks. Get The Lead Out. Wind Turbine & Bats. Soyuz 11.

News: Some New, Some Old:

Waldo Canyon Fire 2012:

Waldo Canyon Fire

“This aerial photo shows the destructive path of the Waldo Canyon fire in the Mountain Shadows subdivision area of Colorado Springs, Colo., Thursday, June 28, 2012.”


With new fence, Navy readying for sea-terror swell

“Navy fears Sinai terror groups will try infiltrating Israel by sea Sailor mans cannon during routine Red Sea patrolafter construction of border fence is completed by year's end.

The navy is preparing to bolster its forces in the Red Sea, the Mediterranean Sea and along the Gaza Strip amid fears that terrorist groups in the Sinai will try infiltrating Israel by sea after construction of the security fence is completed along the border with Egypt.

Map - Israel/Egypt barrier

on Egypt border fence







The Defense Ministry has so far completed the construction of a fence along 170 km of the border and plans to complete the project by the end of the year.
The fence is 5 meters high and is covered in two layers of barbed wire. In addition, the border is lined with dozens of towers with radar systems which provide persistent ground surveillance of the border to warn of infiltrations.
In addition to the fence and radars, the IDF has also bolstered its deployment along the border with the establishment of a new regional brigade and an additional Combat Intelligence Battalion, responsible for surveillance along the border.
The Navy’s concern is that following the completion of the border fence, terrorists – trying to infiltrate Israel – will do so by sea. One scenario is that terrorists from the Sinai Peninsula either swim or sail from Egypt straight into Eilat.”  More at:


Understanding Our Rapidly Changing World Scene

“World conditions worsen almost daily even while most sleep on, blissfully unaware of the tragic direction of major global trends. Take a brief but sweeping look at most newsstands. Today celebrity magazines almost totally dominate—filled with "tittle-tattle" about movie and TV personalities, famous sports stars and the like.

Instead much of our attention should be focused on events now occurring in the Middle East and Europe. For instance, will Iran be allowed to build the bomb or will she be forced by the West to abandon her nuclear ambitions? Observers read the signs very differently.

Iran's nuclear program.Take Associate Professor of International Relations at USC, Jacques C. Hymans, writing in the current issue of Foreign Affairs, for example. His article is aptly summarized in the table of contents: "Nuclear weapons are hard to build for managerial reasons, not technical ones. This is why so few authoritarian regimes have succeeded. They don't have the right culture or institutions. When it comes to Iran's programs, the United States and allies should get out of the way and let Iran's worst enemies gum up the process on their own" (May-June 2012).

But can vulnerable Israel, the United States and the West really afford to indulge in such a potentially lethal gamble? Elliott Abrams, writing in World Affairs (May-June 2012), is at the other end of the spectrum of opinion. "The dangers it [Israel] faces from an Iranian nuclear weapon are unique and, I will argue, are dangers no nation should be asked to accept . . . Official Iranian comments about Israel are continually genocidal in nature."

Elliot Abrams describes the overall strategy: "Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa contain over 60 percent of the Jewish population that Iran could target with its Shabab3 ballistic missiles, killing all of their inhabitants."

This is acceptable discourse at Iran's highest levels of government. Earlier this year, Ayatollah Khamenei, Iran's supreme leader, referred to Israel as a "cancerous tumor that should be cut and will be cut."

"What Would a Nuclear Iran Mean for the World? ," discusses these crucial issues in detail. Several related articles follow. Seriously keeping up with current affairs remains an integral part of wisely watching current events and trends.  Jesus Christ did tell us to be acutely alert to what is happening in the world (see Mark 13:33-37 and Luke 21:34-36)” More at:


Texas Gulf States Celebrate a Victory with the Passage of the RESTORE Act.

Legislation ensures BP fine money is used to restore the natural resources and economy of the Gulf Coast.

“The passage of the RESTORE Act is a victory not just for the Gulf States but for all Americans. If you live in America, you rely on the Gulf of Mexico. The Gulf comprises the 29th largest economy in the world. It produces a huge majority of the seafood Americans eat, including 67 percent of our oysters. One third of the domestic oil we use comes from the Gulf. It supports one of the country's largest recreation and tourism industries — to the tune of $20 billion a year and more than 600,000 jobs.

The RESTORE Act will help revitalize the entire region by ensuring the bulk of the fines collected from those responsible for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill are directed back to the area where it is needed most, the Gulf of Mexico.” More at:


Energy Giant Ditches Coal Plant Retrofit

Kentucky ratepayers breathe sigh of relief over Big Sandy coal plant.   She’s big, dirty and 42-years old—that’s old in power plant years.

“They call her Big Sandy in Kentucky and she has two and a half years to clean up her act until she’s either shut down or replaced with newer, cleaner energy resources.

Right now, she burns millions of tons of coal each year, equaling about 90 railroad cars of the black fuel every day. She emits more than 37,000 tons of sulfur dioxide, 3,700 tons of nitrogen oxides, and 5.6 million tons of carbon dioxide in 2010. That’s a whole lot of air pollution.

The Kentucky Power Company, owned by mega-energy giant American Electric Power, had proposed a near billion dollar upgrade to make the coal-fired power plant based in Louisa, legal and clean up her air pollution. But the price tag would be passed along to Kentucky ratepayers, who were bracing for a more than 30 percent increase in their electricity bills.

Earthjustice representing the Sierra Club, opposed the rate hike and the proposed $940 million investment in installing pollution controls. Retiring Big Sandy unit #2 and replacing it with cleaner energy alternatives would cost much less while providing Kentuckians with healthier air and fatter wallets.

Today, the power company withdrew their rate hike proposal without a ruling from the Kentucky Public Service Commission. The company spokesperson says they will need time to re-evaluate the next steps.”  More at:


Acidification Threatens Oceans' Food Web

Baby Oysters“It started in 2005, when baby oysters began dying by the billions in Oregon and Washington. At first, the fishermen weren’t worried, hardened by years of dealing with nature’s fickleness. But, when the die-offs continued year after year, seamen and scientists alike started seeking answers.   What they found is that the impacts from carbon pollution that scientists have been warning about for decades are occurring now. It turns out that while the world’s eyes have been trained on the changes to the land, the ocean has been quietly undergoing its own transformation.

As carbon pollution increases, oceans absorb the carbon, creating acidic waters that are hostile to species that build shells or skeletons of calcium carbonate. Affected species include corals, tiny sea butterflies known as pteropods and, of course, oysters. All play crucial roles in the marine food web. In addition to the West Coast’s multi-million dollar oyster industry, this unprecedented change in ocean chemistry is also predicted to negatively impact the 1.5 billion people who depend on the ocean’s bounty for their livelihood.”



“We hear a lot about how carbon dioxide emissions are warming the atmosphere and changing climate in ways that are damaging, if not catastrophic, for life on Earth.

Increasingly we are also learning about the impact of carbon dioxide on the oceans. As the sea absorbs carbon from the air its chemistry is changing, becoming more acidic. This also is likely to have a profound impact on life, experts warn.”


More than 150 marine scientists from 26 countries called for immediate action by policymakers to reduce carbon dioxide emissions sharply so as to avoid widespread and severe damage to marine ecosystems from ocean acidification. They sounded the alarm in the Monaco Declaration, according to a news release by Unesco.

Ocean acidification could affect marine food webs and lead to substantial changes in commercial fish stocks, threatening protein supply and food security for millions of people as well as the multi-billion dollar fishing industry, the Monaco Declaration says.

“Coral reefs provide fish habitat, generate billions of dollars annually in tourism, protect shorelines from erosion and flooding, and provide the foundation for tremendous biodiversity, equivalent to that found in tropical rain forests,” the Declaration says.

“Yet by mid-century, ocean acidification may render most regions chemically inhospitable to coral reefs. These and other acidification related changes could affect a wealth of marine goods and services, such as our ability to use the ocean to manage waste, to provide chemicals to make new medicines, and to benefit from its natural capacity to regulate climate.

“For instance, ocean acidification will reduce the ocean’s capacity to absorb anthropogenic CO2, which will exacerbate climate change.”  More at:


Australia to create world's largest marine reserve

Network of proposed marine reserves around Australia

Australia says it will create the world's largest network of marine parks ahead of the Rio+20 summit.  The reserves will cover 3.1 million sq km of ocean, including the Coral Sea.”

File image of coral off the Queensland coast The Coral Sea is home to diverse wildlife, including sharks and tuna

“Restrictions will be placed on fishing and oil and gas exploration in the protected zone covering more than a third of Australia's waters.

Environment Minister Tony Burke, who made the announcement, will attend the earth summit in Brazil next week with Prime Minister Julia Gillard.    "It's time for the world to turn a corner on protection of our oceans," Mr Burke said. "And Australia today is leading that next step."  More at:


Fireworks and Furry Family Members

“Every July 4th there are pet casualties, so I thought I’d take this opportunity well in advance of Independence Day celebrations to remind dog and cat owners of the dangers associated with this particular holiday.”

Many Pets Fear Fireworks Displays

Signs your pet is afraid of fireworks include shaking, barking, howling, excessive drooling, hiding, or escape attempts.

“Fireworks displays can be stressful and frightening for pets, so if you’re planning to take your pet along, I recommend you rethink that idea. Even normally calm dogs can get spooked and disoriented by the noise, lights and crowds involved in a fireworks display. You certainly don’t want to frighten your pet or put him in a situation where he might bolt or become aggressive due to fear.

Even pets left at home can be frightened of the loud noises that seem to go on and on the evening of July 4th. Your dog or cat has a much better sense of hearing than you do, so loud, unfamiliar sounds can be especially unsettling. And this goes double if your pet is getting up in years.

Even small firecracker or sparkler displays by neighbors or family members can upset your pet.  With planning, you can prevent problems with your pet over the July 4th holiday.”       Read article at:


Purses With Lead Sold at Popular Retailers

ht lead in purses nine west lpl 120620 wblog Purses With Lead Sold at Popular Retailers, Consumer Group Finds

“Is there a hidden danger in purses, an accessory that millions of Americans never leave home without?

The Center for Environmental Health found lead in handbags sold at one out of four retail stores it visited.  A groundbreaking new investigation by a consumer watchdog group is raising the question: Is there a hidden danger in purses, an accessory that millions of Americans never leave home without?

The Center for Environmental Health found lead in handbags sold at one out of four retail stores it visited.  The consumer group said that it discovered lead in the sides of 43 of the 300 purses it tested in a lab, even though hundreds of handbag manufacturers signed a court settlement to limit the lead in their products.   The five purses that contained the most lead were made by Tory Burch, Guess, House of Harlow, Nine West and Charlotte Russe.

Click here to see whether you own a purse from one of the manufacturers.

The group said its concern was that lead can rub off products such as purses and get into the body of a woman or her children.  “Lead is stunningly toxic,” said Michael Green, the group’s executive director. “We find it really distressing that some of these companies had this problem.”

The lab results showed the Tory Burch purse contained nearly 200 times more lead than the limit permitted by the legal agreement with the Center for Environmental Health.”  More at:


Spanish company stops wind-turbine project

“Gamesa Inc. has canceled a controversial wind-power project it planned to build on Shaffer Mountain in a major flyway for migrating hawks, eagles and bats along the border of Somerset and Bedford counties.

The 30-turbine, 60-megawatt commercial wind-power project on 22,000 ridge-top acres was scheduled for construction this year and was to come on line in 2013. But its location stirred opposition from environmental, conservation and sportsmen's organizations, almost from the time it was proposed in 2006.

In November, a coalition of those organizations threatened to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for issuing an opinion allowing the turbines to be Bats Pollinate Flowersbuilt near a maternity colony of Indiana bats. The service subsequently agreed to reconsider its opinion.”

Bats: Ecologically Important Mammals

Remember bats are pollinators

"I'm really happy. It took five-and-a-half years, a lot of time and effort was spent opposing this project, and I'm glad it's over for now," said John Buchan, an attorney and leader of local opposition to the project.

Mr. Buchan said the project's potential impacts on the migratory bird corridor and Piney Run and Clear Shade Creek, two of the state's 28 "exceptional value" trout streams, played roles in the opposition but the bat issue was key.” Read more:


Bats and Economics

Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis)“Indiana bats declined by 55 percent in less than ten years and are listed as endangered.  Many of the world's most economically important plants rely on bats. Some crops from these plants are valued in the hundreds of millions of dollars each year and are crucial to the economies of cash-poor developing countries.

Many of our cultivated crop plants still rely on bats for their survival in the wild. These include fruits such as bananas, plantain, breadfruit, avocados, dates, figs, peaches, and mangoes. Other bat-dependent products are cloves, cashers, carob, balsa wood, kapok filler for life preservers (PFDs), and tequila, which comes from agaves century plants).

Even in places so hidden from humans that we are rarely aware of them, organisms that depend on bats for their survival are yielding treasures of great benefit to us. New species of bacteria discovered in North American bat caves are now being studied by major corporations for use in chemical waste detoxification, gasohol production, and improved detergents. Still others may soon be used in the production of new antibiotics.

When a colony of cave-dwelling bats is lost, the potential benefits of countless microorganisms and other animals perish with them. Loss of bats may seriously damage entire ecosystems upon which we depend with unpredictable and potentially disastrous consequences.”  More at:


On This Day:

Soviet cosmonauts perish in reentry disaster, Jun 30, 1971:

“The three Soviet cosmonauts who served as the first crew of the world's first space station die when their spacecraft depressurizes during reentry.

On June 6, the cosmonauts Georgi Dobrovolsky, Vladislav Volkov, and Viktor Patsayev were launched into space aboard Soyuz 11 on a mission to dock and enter Salyut 1, the Soviet space station that had been placed in orbit in April. The spacecraft successfully docked with the station, and the cosmonauts spent 23 days orbiting the earth. On June 30, they left Salyut 1 and began reentry procedures. When they fired the explosive bolts to separate the Soyuz 11 reentry capsule from another stage of the spacecraft, a critical valve was jerked open.

One hundred miles above the earth, the capsule was suddenly exposed to the nearly pressureless environment of space. As the capsule rapidly depressurized, Patsayev tried to close the valve by hand but failed. Minutes later, the cosmonauts were dead. As a result of the tragedy, the Soviet Union did not send any future crews to Salyut 1, and it was more than two years before they attempted another manned mission.”



Misty and I went to get Jay, so we enjoyed her walk down there.  I had expected to take Jay into town to cash his check, but he had already done it.  So I changed into work clothes. It was rather muggy, though not too hot, so I raked pine needles, and he mowed all three lots. Then we called it quits for the day.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Do You Want Pills With That? Pepsi Next. Coca-Cola. Globe Theater. Atlantis and the Mir.

For “Foodie” Friday”:

How Psychiatric Drugs Made America Mad

“Many casually prescribed drugs are fully capable of disabling – often permanently – bodies, brains and spirits.

Since the introduction of major tranquilizers like Thorazine and Haldol, “minor” tranquilizers like Miltown, Librium and Valium and the dozens of so-called “antidepressants” like Prozac, Zoloft and Paxil, tens of millions of unsuspecting Americans have become mired deeply, to the point of permanent disability, in the American mental “health” system.

Many of these innocents have actually been made “crazy” and often disabled by the use of – or the withdrawal from – these commonly prescribed, brain-altering and, for many, brain-damaging psychiatric drugs that have been, for many decades, cavalierly handed out like candy – often in untested and therefore unapproved combinations of two or more.

Trusting and unaware patients have been treated with potentially dangerous drugs by equally unaware but well-intentioned physicians who have been likewise trusting of the slick and obscenely profitable psychopharmaceutical drug companies aka, BigPharma, not to mention the Food and Drug Administration, an agency that is all-too-often in bed with the drug industry that they are supposed to be monitoring and regulating. The foxes of BigPharma have a close ally inside the henhouse.

The sad truth is that the prescribing of potent and often addicting (dependency-inducing) psychiatric drugs has become the standard of care in American medicine since the introduction of the so-called anti-schizophrenic “miracle” drug Thorazine in the mid-1950s. (Thorazine was the offending drug that Jack Nicholson’s character Randall McMurphy and his fellow patients were coerced into taking — to keep them from revolting — at “medication time” in the Academy Award-winning movie “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.”)

Thorazine, incidentally, was originally developed in Europe as an industrial dye. That doesn’t sound so good although it may not be so unusual in the closely related fields of psychopharmcology and the chemical industry.

Many open-minded physicians and many aware psychiatric patients are now motivated to be wary of any and all synthetic chemicals that can cross the blood/brain barrier because all of them are capable of altering the brain in ways totally unknown to medical science, especially with long-term medication use.

Long-term use can result in clinically diagnosable, probably irreversible dementia, premature death and a variety of other related brain disorders that can mimic mental illnesses “of unknown cause.”

Patients have been brain-washed by the inane and unbelievable (if one has intact critical thinking skills) commercials on TV that quickly gloss over the lethal adverse effects in the fine print while urging the watcher to “ask your doctor” about getting a prescription for the latest unaffordable blockbuster drug.”         Complete article at:


GET IT HERE: PEPSI NEXTHere is the ordered ingredient list for Pepsi Next, followed by some potential health complications:

“Carbonated water - tap water containing fluoride, among other potential dangerous chemicals.
High fructose corn syrup - promotes obesity and liver damage.
Caramel color - potentially cancer causing.
Natural flavor - can be quite literally anything.
Phosphoric acid - causes tooth enamel corrosion, almost as bad as battery acid.
Sodium citrate - can cause muscle spasms, elevated sodium, and other side effects.
Caffeine - addictive, causes extra wear and tear on the adrenal glands, stress, and other issues.
Potassium sorbate - generally non-toxic, but can cause side-effects to certain individuals.
Aspartame - can cause cancer, mental disorders, headaches, weight gain, and a host of other health issues.
Citric acid - linked to the erosion of tooth enamel. Sodas are certainly not a healthy way to consume this ingredient naturally found in citrus fruit.
Acesulfame potassium - yet another artificial sweetener, could cause cancer and thyroid problems.
Sucralose - causes poor 'gut health' by reducing the amount of 'good bacteria' in the intestines. Also causes weight gain, among other issues.
So the next time you consider knocking back a Pepsi Next or some other toxic heavily-marketed 'beverage,' consider the fact that there is absolutely nothing redeeming health-wise about it.
Drink filtered water instead.”

In addition to the above links, sources for this article include:       Learn more:


imagesCA83A1QJ Coke may require cancer warning label if drink ingredients not changed

(NaturalNews) “Back in January, the state of California added to its list of cancer-causing chemicals an ingredient commonly used in flavored soda beverages, which has sent major shockwaves throughout the processed food industry. And according to numerous reports, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, and even Whole Foods are having to alter their soda beverage recipes in order to avoid being required by the state of California to label their products as causing cancer.

The cancer-causing chemical in question is 4-methylimidazole, or 4-MI, a byproduct formed during the production of caramel color, an additive commonly used in processed cola beverages. According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), caramel color produced using ammonia or ammonia-sulfites creates both 4-MI and 2-MI (2-methylimidazole), which have been shown to be carcinogenic (
CSPI last year petitioned the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to remove its "Generally Recognized as Safe" (GRAS) status from caramel colors produced in this way, but the FDA refused, insisting that caramel color with 4-MI is safe. But Californians apparently believe otherwise, as they overwhelmingly voted to have 4-MI added to the list of toxic substances covered under California's Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, also known as Proposition 65.

As a result, corporate beverage giants are having to change the way they produce caramel color in order to maintain levels of 4-MI that are below the threshold limit. In the process, they are having to spin the story publicly to make it seem as though 4-MI is not dangerous, and that altering the beverage formulas will not change the taste, color, or consistency of their beverages.

But a 2008 study published in the journal Archives of Toxicology found that 4-MI is toxic, and that it is linked to causing clonic seizures, hyperactivity, impaired gait, chronic inflammation, focal fatty change in the liver, carcinoma, leukemia, and adenoma, among other conditions. The study essentially confirmed that 4-MI is carcinogenic (    Learn more:


On This Day:

The Globe Theater burns down, Jun 29, 1613:

“The Globe Theater, where most of Shakespeare's plays debuted, burned down on this day in 1613.

The Globe was built by Shakespeare's acting company, the Lord Chamberlain's Men, in 1599 from the timbers of London's very first permanent theater, Burbage's Theater, built in 1576. Before James Burbage built his theater, plays and dramatic performances were ad hoc affairs, performed on street corners and in the yards of inns. However, the Common Council of London, in 1574, started licensing theatrical pieces performed in inn yards within the city limits. To escape the restriction, actor James Burbage built his own theater on land he leased outside the city limits. When Burbage's lease ran out, the Lord Chamberlain's men moved the timbers to a new location and created the Globe. Like other theaters of its time, the Globe was a round wooden structure with a stage at one end, and covered balconies for the gentry. The galleries could seat about 1,000 people, with room for another 2,000 "groundlings," who could stand on the ground around the stage.

The Lord Chamberlain's men built Blackfriars theater in 1608, a smaller theater that seated about 700 people, to use in winter when the open-air Globe wasn't practical.”


U.S. space shuttle docks with Russian space station, Jun 29, 1995:

“On this day in 1995, the American space shuttle Atlantis docks with the Russian space station Mir to form the largest man-made satellite ever to orbit the Earth.

This historic moment of cooperation between former rival space programs was also the 100th human space mission in American history. At the time, Daniel Goldin, chief of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), called it the beginning of "a new era of friendship and cooperation" between the U.S. and Russia. With millions of viewers watching on television, Atlantis blasted off from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in eastern Florida on June 27, 1995.

Just after 6 a.m. on June 29, Atlantis and its seven crew members approached Mir as both crafts orbited the Earth some 245 miles above Central Asia, near the Russian-Mongolian border. When they spotted the shuttle, the three cosmonauts on Mir broadcast Russian folk songs to Atlantis to welcome them. Over the next two hours, the shuttle's commander, Robert "Hoot" Gibson expertly maneuvered his craft towards the space station. To make the docking, Gibson had to steer the 100-ton shuttle to within three inches of Mir at a closing rate of no more than one foot every 10 seconds.

The docking went perfectly and was completed at 8 a.m., just two seconds off the targeted arrival time and using 200 pounds less fuel than had been anticipated. Combined, Atlantis and the 123-ton Mir formed the largest spacecraft ever in orbit. It was only the second time ships from two countries had linked up in space; the first was in June 1975, when an American Apollo capsule and a Soviet Soyuz spacecraft briefly joined in orbit.

Once the docking was completed, Gibson and Mir's commander, Vladimir Dezhurov, greeted each other by clasping hands in a victorious celebration of the historic moment. A formal exchange of gifts followed, with the Atlantis crew bringing chocolate, fruit and flowers and the Mir cosmonauts offering traditional Russian welcoming gifts of bread and salt. Atlantis remained docked with Mir for five days before returning to Earth, leaving two fresh Russian cosmonauts on the space station. The three veteran Mir crew members returned with the shuttle, including two Russians and Norman Thagard, a U.S. astronaut who rode a Russian rocket to the space station in mid-March 1995 and spent over 100 days in space, a U.S. endurance record. NASA's Shuttle-Mir program continued for 11 missions and was a crucial step towards the construction of the International Space Station now in orbit.”



Misty and I drove down to get Jay, so she had her walk-about down there. Their neighbor has been giving me bags of tomatoes for the last few days, some I have to let ripen a bit more on the porch.   Daily, I have been cooking them with different spices, and then freezing batches in containers.  I could can them, but this is easier for me.

When the cargo trailer was first designed, the table base and dinette table were going to be stored on the left side when it was in toyhauler mode.  It would be awful to want something under that bench and have to move the mattress, bed base and dinette table to get to it.  We had put a cabinet door in the left bench part of the bed.  When we first put the bed base up there, the back door porch light switch got in the way. 

So yesterday Jay and I made a cabinet door under the right side bench, as that is where the bed base and table can be stored now.   We cut the hole in the front of the bench, and framed it up.  Now we just need Ray to have time to sand and paint inside the bench and the cabinet door, so we can install it another day.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Easy Trailer Re-hitching. RV Tires. Solar Install. Regulator. KillAVolt. 12v Socket. Tanks. Fridge. James Madison.

For “tRaVersing or RV Day”:

Easy trailer rehitching--use a level to get hitch height right!

“Folks who tow travel trailers and fifth wheels often struggle with hooking back up after setting up their trailer for livability. The problem is this: You unhitch and level the trailer; when it’s time to hitch up again, getting the front of the trailer to the right height to hitch up can be a pain in the neck.

Here’s an easy way to deal with this issue. Get yourself a simple bubble level like the one pictured. Mount it on the side of your trailer at the front of the rig. Fifth wheel folks will like this one, just mount it close to the switch that controls your "landing gear." Don’t use the double stick mounting tape included with the level, but rather, run a screw through the top center portion of the plastic above the level tube. Snug the screw down only far enough that you can push either end of the level up and down with some amount of force required.

Now when you unhitch, raise the front of the trailer high enough to unhitch--just off the ball in the case of a pull trailer, or just off the fifth wheel saddle plate. Now adjust the new level to where the bubble is showing level. You can now level up the trailer for livability--just don’t touch the "hitching level."

When it’s time to hitch up again, raise or lower the trailer until the hitching level shows "level" again. Now your trailer is at just the right height to roll right under and hitch up.” From:


How RV tires are developed and why some are a compromise.

"If a tire is being designed for a specific vehicle manufacturer such as Ford, Chevy, Toyota or BMW, there will be a number of tires submitted by competing tire companies all trying to deliver the best overall compromise in performance characteristics. Please note that all original equipment manufacturers have slightly different requirements but all make similar requests for performance improvements in many areas. In the future I will use the term "OE" to include these car and pickup manufacturers.

Compromise: Now is a good time to talk about some of the various trade-offs the engineer is faced with when trying to meet conflicting goals and customer wants. I am sure we would all like an RV that has all the interior space and amenities of a 40’ diesel pusher but gets 25 mpg and can be driven down crowded city streets without knocking off our mirrors. Oh yes, it should also cost under $30k. Well Bunkie, that just ain’t gonna happen in real life.

The same goes for a tire that handles like an Indy tire, is as quiet as the proverbial mouse, has great off-road traction, is good for 100k miles, and costs $25. One thing few people realize is that most if not all performance characteristics are a compromise.

For example: if you improve wet traction you probably hurt fuel economy unless you use a special type of rubber that costs double per pound and is more difficult to process. If you improve handling you might hurt ride and noise. When you improve noise you can significantly increase the cost of making the molds used in manufacturing. The cost of a tire mold can be as low as $10,000 and can approach $100,000 each. Depending on the production volume needs, a tire manufacturer could need 30 or more molds. The list of trade-offs goes on and on.

The competition for a tire application might start three or more years before scheduled start of delivery with two to five tire manufacturers competing for the contract, knowing that only one or two will end up being selected to actually provide tires. The costs associated with building and testing special prototype tires can run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars and are absorbed by the tire company. The only way a tire company can afford this type of activity is by landing a contract for a few hundred thousand tires so the costs can be spread out.

Unlike “OE”, an RV manufacturer may only need a couple thousand tires so a custom tire, designed for a specific RV would be cost prohibitive. Since the RV manufacturer won’t be trying to get custom tires, it doesn’t have staff engineers working on developing specifications for such tires. The RV company will in all likelihood either take what comes already on the cut-away chassis or the bare chassis for Class-C or A vehicles and in the case of trailers, may buy the tire with the lowest cost that can meet tire size requirements and expected delivery schedule.

For RV applications the one thing that is in the control of the manufacturer is “Reserve Load”. This is the difference between the load placed on each tire with the RV normally loaded and the load capability of the tires at specified inflation.”  From:


Add Solar power

imagesCAXQ7UEGA reader wrote: “Ran across what I think is a good system to add Solar power to your rig. The solar kit is made by Go-POWER. I have purchased one of their inverters and like it very much.
I did not shop around for price. You may find a better price on a different system. I'm only showing this as it does a good job of explaining the components of a Solar kit for your RV. The video is from YouTube and is very well done.

Disclaimer: I am not associated with Go-Power nor do I profit in any way from this post.     Here is the Solar kit sold on Enjoy”


New to solar? Don't forget the regulator.

“If you want to safely use solar panels on your rig, they need to have a system to stop them from charging when your house batteries are full.

At night, without a regulator system, the solar panels will turn into a "load" and actually cause your batteries to discharge. There are "self regulated" panels available, the trouble is, their output is so small it's hardly practical for an RVer. Commercially built solar panel regulators are like a visit to Starbucks. You can get plain (OK, with crème and sugar) or you can add everything in the way of bells and whistles. What do you get with your cappuccino?

Solar charge regulator isSome fancy regulators have built in meters that show battery voltage and
charge current--that's a great bonus--and even those that track your
battery "bank account" by showing how much power you've used, verses how much you've stored. Of course, the more you get, the more you pay.
What about prices? We've seen "charge controllers" as solar regulators are sometimes called, that will handle 20 amps worth of solar power for around $100--including a display that indicates battery voltage and the amount of charge current.

In one of our installations where only a single panel was to be used, we found a very plain regulator with LEDs that simply indicated if the panel was charging or not, for around $25.  A plain-brown-wrapper regulator that simply that stops charging when the battery is full, and restarts charging when the battery needs it is great if you're on a budget. Just make sure you always buy a regulator that has more capacity than you need now. Later if you expand your solar power "farm" on the roof, you won't need to invest in another regulator.”  (From RVSolar

Prevent an overcharging generator from 'frying' electronics!

“KillAVolt is designed to sense over-voltage at between 145 VAC and 155 VAC when an AVR (Automatic Voltage Regulator) fails to control the voltage at its normal operating range. When this high voltage is sensed by the KAV, it will instantly stop the engine, which in turn will also lower the voltage as the engine comes to a stop. Reversal of the high voltage prevents serious damage to your appliances that are attached to the generator. Circuit breakers only control amperage and will not disconnect from high voltage.

Surge protectors are only a false sense of security and are most effective for micro spikes found on utility voltage at your home. High voltage on a failed generator will go to between 196 (120v output) and 398 volts (240 output). This high voltage will destroy an RV full of appliances. Converter, microwave, electronic audio and video equipment as well as the Surge protector. Anything having an electronic switch will be toast! The KillAVolt will keep your sanity and allow your generator a chance for repair. Do not be fooled that an AVR is a protection device, it is not! AVR's are used by all synchronous generators to give a steady control of voltage when it is working. When its not working? Well you just read the possibilities! Don't be a victim of high voltage from your generator.”


Installing a 12-volt electric socket.imagesCAM4O2JO

“It seemed like an easy job to the Wanderman, Rich Miller -- installing a 12-volt socket near his bed so he could charge his phone while sleeping. But if you are a regular reader of Rich's, you know that things don't always go as planned for this creative but sometimes challenged handyman. Read his story.”


the refrigerator repairmaCool down that refrigerator
“Hot summer days can really raise the load on your RV refrigerator. Several things can help keep the chill on your cooler. First, reduce the number of times you open and close the box. If possible, park your rig so the back side of the refrigerator is shaded. An inexpensive, 12-volt (as appropriate to your RV electrical system) "muffin fan" mounted under the condenser coils on the outside of the refrigerator will help to blast off heat from the coils, increasing the cooling ability. Find voltage for the fan from refrigerator wiring using your electronic multimeter.”


Keep holding tank odors down in summer's heat.

“When it does come to treatments, we've lean toward the more "natural" kind, bacterial-enzyme treatments. We found them to be quite effective in keeping the odor down, and in keeping the tank free of build up. Ah, but when summer's warmth came, we did find some issues.

One foul smelling experience when the combination of heat and non-motion did "shut down" the bacterial action in our tank. That was bad! To get out of that problem we had to empty the tank and fill it completely with water and a large dose of baking soda. After 24 hours we emptied the tank, then started using it again with a fresh dose of bacterial-enzyme treatment. The odor was gone, and we were happily back in business.

Our experiences lead to warm weather holding tank tips: As we've already pointed out, the more often you dump, the happier you'll be. Here's the corollary: Keep moving! The more you stir up the contents of your holding tank (logically by driving) the less odor problems you can anticipate. Besides, the more you keep moving, the more of the country you'll see!

What about treating your gray water tank? Few RVers ever do much of anything about treating their gray tank. We recommend you abstain from pouring grease down the drain, but for the most part, a gray tank will give you few problems.” More at:


On This Day:

Former President James Madison dies, Jun 28, 1836:

“On this day in 1836, James Madison, drafter of the Constitution, recorder of the Constitutional Convention, author of the "Federalist Papers" and fourth president of the United States, dies on his tobacco plantation in Virginia.

Madison first distinguished himself as a student at the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University), where he successfully completed a four-year course of study in two years and, in 1769, helped found the American Whig Society, the second literary and debate society at Princeton (and the world), to rival the previously established Cliosophic Society.

Madison returned to Virginia with intellectual accolades but poor health in 1771. By 1776, he was sufficiently recovered to serve for three years in the legislature of the new state of Virginia, where he came to know and admire Thomas Jefferson. In this capacity, he assisted with the drafting of the Virginia Declaration of Religious Freedom and the critical decision for Virginia to cede its western claims to the Continental Congress.

Madison is best remembered for his critical role in the Constitutional Convention of 1787, where he presented the Virginia Plan to the assembled delegates in Philadelphia and oversaw the difficult process of negotiation and compromise that led to the drafting of the final Constitution. Madison's published "Notes on the Convention" are considered the most detailed and accurate account of what occurred in the closed-session debates. (Madison forbade the publishing of his notes until all the participants were deceased.) After the Constitution was submitted to the people for ratification, Madison collaborated with John Jay and Alexander Hamilton on "The Federalist Papers," a series of pamphlets that argued for the acceptance of the new government. Madison penned the most famous of the pamphlets, "Federalist No. 10," which made an incisive argument for the ability of a large federation to preserve individual rights.

In 1794, Madison married a young widow, Dolley Payne Todd, who would prove to be Washington, D.C.'s finest hostess during Madison's years as secretary of state to the widowed Thomas Jefferson and then as the fourth president of the United States from 1809 to 1817. Dolley Madison earned a special place in the nation's memory for saving a portrait of George Washington before fleeing the burning White House during the War of 1812.

The War of 1812 tested Madison's presidency. The Federalists staunchly opposed Madison's declaration of war against the British and threatened to secede from the Union during the Harford Convention. When the new nation managed to muster a tenuous victory, the Federalist Party was destroyed as America's status as a nation apart from Britain was secured.

After retiring from official political positions, Madison served Thomas Jefferson's beloved University of Virginia first as a member of the board of visitors and then as rector. In 1938, the State Teachers College at Harrisonburg, Virginia, was renamed in Madison's honor as Madison College; in 1976, it became James Madison University.”



Prime, my foster cat, has already found the aquarium in the grooming room, so I am glad it has a good hood on it.  She stares at that blue fish, and I wonder what is going through her head.

As it was Wednesday, it was shopping day, and Jay hadn’t been out of the subdivision for several days he wanted to go with me.  Misty and I went to get him, so she and Maddie had their walk-about down there.

The only important thing on my list was to try to find the right hasp for the cargo trailer’s bed, which I didn’t find, but I came home with a few things that were in half-price sales at thrift shops. I bought several nice tops, and Jay bought 2 pairs of jeans, and 2 pairs of athletic shoes.

images[9] Another bargain was a AA battery operated 6” x 6”x 1” electronic King James Bible, for $3.  It has a QWERTY keyboard and screen in a leather case.  Just type in the first three letters of the book, chapter, and verse, and up it comes on the screen.  Or just type in the book and scroll.  I don’t have any trouble finding the books and chapters in the Bible, but Jay does. I suppose his tablet would do the same thing, if he knew how to work it, though, but a lot more expensive to lose.

We didn’t even stop at a grocery store yesterday.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Bermuda Petrel. Hummingbirds. Loons. Safe Wind Power. Pollination. Bat's Tongue. Shocking Fish. Smithsonian. Route 66. Fish Rescue.

For “Winged Wednesday”:

Bermuda Petrel

Bermuda Petrel by Brian Patteson

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“Bermuda’s only endemic breeding species, this nocturnal, ground-nesting seabird once numbered more than half a million individuals. Its folk name, Cahow, refers to the bird’s eerie calls.

Human settlement in the early 1600s brought with it deforestation, exploitation of the bird as food, and introduced pigs, rats, cats and dogs, all of which soon decimated its population.

For 300 years the petrel was considered extinct, but a dead specimen was found in 1935, and 18 nesting pairs were rediscovered in 1951. Thanks to intensive conservation management, the population had increased to 53 breeding pairs by the 1990s.

A major threat to the species continues to be lack of suitable breeding habitat. Hurricanes can flood nest burrows and erode suitable nesting areas, and sea-level rise resulting from climate change will likely exacerbate these impacts. Competition for nest sites with White-tailed Tropicbirds and rodent predation also lower nesting success.

An intensive Cahow Recovery Program was begun in 1961, and is today managed by the Bermuda Department of Conservation Services. The 2011-2012 nesting season saw a record number of 56 chicks successfully fledging. This year the program reached a critical milestone’s 101 nesting pairs of petrels.”    Read more about the conservation successes and challenges remaining for the Cahow.

Help ABC conserve this and other birds and their habitats!

BirdNote logo

Listen to a two-minute broadcast about the Bermuda Petrel

Photo: Brian Patteson; Range Map, ABC


hummingbirdTen Amazing Things About the World’s Tiniest Backyard Birds

“There are eight species of hummingbirds that nest in the U.S. and about two dozen who live here or visit. For those in the eastern half of America, the Ruby Throat is what you will see. The West, particularly the Southwest, has many more species.

Here are ten things about hummingbirds that are truly awesome:


Loons Go Fishing

The fly-fisherman has some competition!

“You're fishing on a northern lake, when a black-and-white shape torpedoes under your boat. Alerted by the sound of your reel, a Common Loon follows the trout in hot pursuit. If the fish is small, the loon may take it right off the end of your line. If you succeed in bringing the fish to hand, the loon will wait for your release, hoping to make a meal of the tired fish. The Common Loon has learned to take advantage of the human.”
Sign up for the BirdNote podcast and listen anytime!   Support More Shows Like This From:


New Interactive Web Map to Help Reduce Bird Mortality From Wind Development

(Washington., D.C.) “A new, interactive web-based map, created by American Bird Conservancy (ABC)—the nation's leading bird conservation organization, is now available, and has the potential to dramatically reduce bird impacts from wind turbines. Open the map.

Wind Map Screen Shot

Wind Map Screen Shot ©American Bird Conservancy. Click to open the Web map.

“Using Google Earth as a platform, the map highlights more than 2,000 locations in the United States where birds are likely to be particularly vulnerable to impacts from wind energy development. Key sites are colored either orange or red to indicate their relative importance to birds.

Birds can be impacted by wind power both through direct collisions and by displacement from nesting, foraging, or transit areas. The map addresses both of these issues by identifying both concentrated migratory flight paths and key habitat locations.  The map also provides extensive background data for each location, including details of ownership, habitats, land use, bird species, and conservation issues.

"This map offers a way to prevent millions of bird deaths from wind power, while at the same time providing ample opportunity for the prudent development of this potentially bird-smart energy source. Careful siting of wind energy remains the single most important factor in reducing bird deaths from wind power, and this map provides a means to do just that," said Mike Parr, Vice President of ABC. "ABC strongly supports bird-smart wind energy development" he added.” More at:


Bat TongueBats have wings, too:   Tube-Lipped Nectar Bat's Tongue Is Longer Than Its Body.

“The bat is camera-worthy thanks to one attribute in particular: its incredibly long, wormlike tongue.  The 2.5-inch bat sports a 3.5-inch tongue — the longest (relative to body length) of any mammal in the world. If humans were similarly proportioned, we'd have 9 feet of flesh spilling out of our mouths.

To capture this striking footage of the bat plunging its tongue into nectar-laden flowers, the NatGeo team cut a tiny hole into the base of a flower and installed a special slow-motion camera inside, which slowed the action by 40 times.  “NatGeo cameras capture this unusually graceful bat for the first time ever.”


The Beauty of Pollination. Birds, Bees, Bats, Butterflies pollinating.

We are all dependent to each other. Taken from Louie Schwartzberg TED talk


So also on “Winged Wednesday” included are some fish, as fish have water wings:

Biologists Electroshock Threatened Fish to Save Them. The New Mexico trout are at risk from wildfire fallout.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - “Biologists are trying to save a threatened trout in southwestern New Mexico from the post-wildfire ravages, even as crews nearby and around the West struggle to contain blazes that have charred hundreds of square miles of forested countryside.

A team used electroshocking devices to temporarily stun the Gila trout so they could quickly be scooped into a net. From there, the fish were being put into a tank to be ferried out of the wilderness via helicopter to a special truck that was waiting to drive them to a hatchery in northern New Mexico for safe keeping.  The first load of trout was brought out Friday and the work would continue into Saturday, said Art Telles, a biologist and staff resource officer with the Gila National Forest.

The fish are imperiled by the wildfire aftermath - choking floods of ash, soil and charred debris that are expected to come with summer rains.
"When we have hot fire in some of these drainages, that can move ash and sediment after the rains start and that is pretty deadly to trout," he said.” More at:


On This Day:

Smithson's curious bequest, Jun 27, 1829:

“In Genoa, Italy, English scientist James Smithson dies after a long illness, leaving behind a will with a peculiar footnote. In the event that his only nephew died without any heirs, Smithson decreed that the whole of his estate would go to "the United States of America, to found at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an Establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge." Smithson's curious bequest to a country that he had never visited aroused significant attention on both sides of the Atlantic.

Smithson had been a fellow of the venerable Royal Society of London from the age of 22, publishing numerous scientific papers on mineral composition, geology, and chemistry. In 1802, he overturned popular scientific opinion by proving that zinc carbonates were true carbonate minerals, and one type of zinc carbonate was later named smithsonite in his honor.

Six years after his death, his nephew, Henry James Hungerford, indeed died without children, and on July 1, 1836, the U.S. Congress authorized acceptance of Smithson's gift. President Andrew Jackson sent diplomat Richard Rush to England to negotiate for transfer of the funds, and two years later Rush set sail for home with 11 boxes containing a total of 104,960 gold sovereigns, eight shillings, and seven pence, as well as Smithson's mineral collection, library, scientific notes, and personal effects. After the gold was melted down, it amounted to a fortune worth well over $500,000. After considering a series of recommendations, including the creation of a national university, a public library, or an astronomical observatory, Congress agreed that the bequest would support the creation of a museum, a library, and a program of research, publication, and collection in the sciences, arts, and history. On August 10, 1846, the act establishing the Smithsonian Institution was signed into law by President James K. Polk.

Today, the Smithsonian is composed of 19 museums including the recently announced National Museum of African American History and Culture, nine research centers throughout the United States and the world and the national zoo. Besides the original Smithsonian Institution Building, popularly known as the "Castle," visitors to Washington, D.C., tour the National Museum of Natural History, which houses the natural science collections, the National Zoological Park, and the National Portrait Gallery. The National Museum of American History houses the original Star-Spangled Banner and other artifacts of U.S. history. The National Air and Space Museum has the distinction of being the most visited museum in the world, exhibiting marvels of aviation and space history such as the Wright brothers' plane and Freedom 7, the space capsule that took the first American into space. John Smithson, the Smithsonian Institution's great benefactor, is interred in a tomb in the Smithsonian Building.”


Route 66 decertified, Jun 27, 1985:

“After 59 years, the iconic Route 66 enters the realm of history on this day in 1985, when the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials decertifies the road and votes to remove all its highway signs.

Measuring some 2,200 miles in its heyday, Route 66 stretched from Chicago, Illinois to Santa Monica, California, passing through eight states. According to a New York Times article about its decertification, most of Route 66 followed a path through the wilderness forged in 1857 by U.S. Navy Lieutenant Edward Beale at the head of a caravan of camels. Over the years, wagon trains and cattlemen eventually made way for trucks and passenger automobiles.

The idea of building a highway along this route surfaced in Oklahoma in the mid-1920s as a way to link the state to cities like Chicago and Los Angeles. Highway Commissioner Cyrus S. Avery touted it as a way of diverting traffic from Kansas City, Missouri and Denver. In 1926, the highway earned its official designation as Route 66. The diagonal course of Route 66 linked hundreds of mostly rural communities to the cities along its route, allowing farmers to more easily transport grain and other types of produce for distribution. The highway was also a lifeline for the long-distance trucking industry, which by 1930 was competing with the railroad for dominance in the shipping market.

Route 66 was the scene of a mass westward migration during the 1930s, when more than 200,000 people traveled from the poverty-stricken Dust Bowl to California. John Steinbeck immortalized the highway, which he called the "Mother Road," in his classic 1939 novel "The Grapes of Wrath."

Beginning in the 1950s, the building of a massive system of interstate highways made older roads increasingly obsolete, and by 1970, modern four-lane highways had bypassed nearly all sections of Route 66. In October 1984, Interstate-40 bypassed the last original stretch of Route 66 at Williams, Arizona, and the following year the road was decertified. According to the National Historic Route 66 Federation, drivers can still use 85 percent of the road, and Route 66 has become a destination for tourists from all over the world.

Often called the "Main Street of America," Route 66 became a pop culture mainstay over the years, inspiring its own song (written in 1947 by Bobby Troup, "Route 66" was later recorded by artists as varied as Nat "King" Cole, Chuck Berry and the Rolling Stones) as well as a 1960s television series. More recently, the historic highway was featured prominently in the hit animated film "Cars" (2006).”



Jay was feeling better and wanted to work, so even though it was already nearly 9.30AM, Misty and I went to get him.  He was going to put a blue cichlid fish ( in the lake, as it was beating up on the other ones in his tank.

Electric blue cichlid


Well, you know me, I wasn’t going to let that poor fish suffer in that nasty lake, so we rounded up an old aquarium, brought it and the fish up here.  We rinsed and disinfected the aquarium with salt, plus the filter, pump, tubing, etc., as it hadn’t been used for ages, and found a place to put it in the grooming room. We had to be very careful not to use any buckets or anything that had been washed with soap or bleach, so I found some 3lb coffee canisters, and we used those for filling the tank.  We didn’t have any de-chlorinator, but Ray was going into town so he picked some up. In the meantime we had a little air pump on the container that the fish was in.  As all but Bettas, need pumped air.  (  When Ray returned with the de-chlorinator, I put some in the tank water, and transferred the fish.

After I saved the fish, Jay said that I won’t go to heaven, I will be at Rainbow Bridge taking care of the animals who are waiting for their parents!! ( )

All that took quite a while, but we take out a lot of more of the lumber that was stored in Pugsy, the vintage motor home, and put it away. 

Little Binkie was absolutely excited to see Jay, as he has been feeding her for about a year, so I could see her in her true character, and knew she wasn’t really happy here.  Binkie was glad when her Dad’s ex-wife came to my house, and said that she was back, and she would take care of Binkie.  I hope she doesn’t let her stay out in the afternoon heat anymore, like the room mate did.   I could tell that Binkie was missing her Dad, as when I had her in my back yard, she would look at every big truck that when by yesterday.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Glen Rose and Granbury, TX. Dinosaur Valley. Berlin Airlift. St. Lawrence Seaway. Cargo Trailer. “Binkie”.

For “Travel Tuesday”:

Map Of Glen_RoseGlen Rose, pretty name for a city, isn’t it?

“Glen Rose is the county seat of Somervell County. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 2,444. Glen Rose is part of the Granbury micropolitan area.   The Granbury Micropolitan Statistical Area, as defined by the United States Census Bureau, is an area consisting of two counties anchored by the city of Granbury.”

Granbury, Texas 76048

Let’s start at Granbury:

Granbury History

The Granbury Opera House,“Founded in 1825, Granbury started as a square and log cabin court house. It is generally considered to be a suburb of the Fort Worth. Many of the buildings on the square are now registered historic landmarks, including the Granbury Opera House, which still hosts Broadway productions.

Dam and Lake Granbury were 

The city name originated from the Confederate General Hiram B. Granberry. Some scholars, to explain why the city name is spelled differently, believe the name Grandberry was misread on a document, but recent findings have concluded that Granberry chose to spell his name Granbury. Recent expansion of the city was made possible by the damming of the Brazos River in 1969, which formed Lake Granbury, a long, narrow lake which flows through the city.

Granbury and Hood County are rich in Texas history. David (Davy) Crockett's wife, Elizabeth, settled in Hood County following the Texas Revolution against Mexico. Crockett, as well as other Alamo participants, received land grants. The Crockett family received land in what is now Hood County. Elizabeth Crockett is buried in Acton State Historic Site, the smallest state park in Texas. A large statue of Elizabeth Crockett marks her grave site. Several of Crockett's descendants still reside in Hood County.

St Helens on Granbury SquareJohn Wilkes Booth, according to Granbury legend, moved to Hood County and assumed the name of John St. Helen. There is a store on the historic town square that is still called St. Helen's.

English actor Peter Mayhew, who portrayed the wookie Chewbacca in four of the six Star Wars movies, resides in Granbury.”


Glen Rose History,   19th century:

“The area was first settled in 1849 by Charles Barnard, who opened a trading post near Comanche Peak. After the region became a federal Indian reservation in 1855, Barnard moved his business to Fort Belknap. Circa 1859 when the reservation was abolished, he returned to the area and built the first store on what is now the site of Glen Rose.

Barnard's MillA three-story stone gristmill was constructed along the Paluxy River and the town that grew up around it became known as Barnard's Mill.

The mill was sold to T.C. Jordan of Dallas in 1871 for $65,000. Jordan's wife, a native of Scotland, decided to rename the town Rose Glen to reflect the area's natural surroundings.  The citizens later voted to call the community Glen Rose. A post office opened in 1874.

Somervell Courthouse in GlenWhen Somervell County was formed on March 15, 1875, Glen Rose was designated as its county seat.  A courthouse around Glen Rose's town square was completed around 1892, but burned down a year later. A newly built Romanesque Revival style courthouse was constructed soon after with locally quarried limestone. That building sustained damage in a 1902 tornado that also damaged part of the town square.

20th century

Throughout the period from the 1900s to the 1920s, Glen Rose was home to approximately 1,000 people. The area's mineral springs attracted numerous doctors and self-styled healers to the community. During Moonshine. Glen Rose has heldProhibition, the area was a center of moonshining and Glen Rose became known as the "whiskey woods capital of the state." The population remained steady during the Great Depression, although unemployment rates in both Glen Rose and Somervell County increased.  Three low-water dams on the Paluxy River, several local school buildings, and a canning plant were built with Works Projects Administration (WPA) money.

Comanche Peak Nuclear PowerDuring the post-war years, the population of Somervell County declined from 3,071 in 1940 to 2,542 in 1950 as many residents moved in search of greater employment opportunities. At the same time, Glen Rose grew from 1,050 residents in 1940 to 1,248 in 1950. The construction of the Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant in the mid-1970s brought financial advantages and new residents to the Glen Rose area. The city experienced a 34 percent increase in population between 1970 and 1980. The nuclear plant came to dominate the local economy. Other chief industries include farming, ranching, and tourism.”


Area attractions

“Big Rocks Park in Glen Rose Texas has been a popular hangout for a long time. As the name says, there are big rocks, result of some geologic event thousands of years ago. What makes it interesting is that the Paluxy River flows by the rocks and the river bed is rock. The unusual rock forms and the river make for an Glen Rose Big Rocks Parkinteresting place to hang out for a little bit. Wading in the water is a popular pastime here in the early summer when there’s still water in the Paluxy.

Road Trip-Paluxy River, Glen





Even when it’s not Summer, this is a fun place. Climbing on the rocks and hanging out is great fun.

Big Rocks Park, Glen RoseIn a dry winter you can walk down the river bed. Last year they built a walk way from the Paluxy Heritage Park to Big Rocks Park. So, now you can walk from Big Rocks over to Paluxy Heritage Park.

For another swimming option in Glen Rose, you might consider Oakdale Park. Oakdale has a big pool that was built in 1925 but that’s still a great swimming place today.”


Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, Glen Rose, Texas. See in Google Earth; Share on:Fossil Rim Wildlife Center is an 1,800-acre (7.3 km) wildlife preserve open to the public. It features many different species of animals.  The facility was built in 1984 to protect the wildlife of Texas and the world. In fact it is an endangered species research and conservation facility. They have over 1,000 animals from more than 50 species. The park is set up for visitors to drive through the park. It is possible to feed the animals from the cars, as one drives along.” Read more:


Dinosaur Valley State Park

Glen Rose, TX - Dinosaur “Dinosaur Valley State Park contains some of the best preserved dinosaur tracks in the world. The dinosaur tracks are located in the riverbed, so please call ahead to check on river conditions.




There are two fiberglass models, a 70-foot Apatosaurus and a 45-foot Tyrannosaurus Rex. They were built, under commission of the Sinclair Oil Company, for New York World's Fair Dinosaur Exhibit of 1964 - 1965.

Other activities include camping, picnicking, hiking, mountain biking, equestrian use in a separate 100-acre area, river swimming and fishing, and wildlife observation.”

near Glen Rose, Texas


Glen Rose Texas - Somervell




Dinosaur Valley State Park features a large number of dinosaur footprints, the Glen Rose Formation, in the bed of the Paluxy River. The park is one of the top local tourist attractions.

Eastward-dipping limestones, sandstones, and mudstones of the Glen Rose Formation were deposited during the early Cretaceous Period approximately 113 million years ago along the shorelines of an ancient sea, and form the geological setting for the park area. Over the last million years or so, these layered formations have been eroded, dissected and sculpted by the Paluxy River which, in many places, has cut down to resistant beds and planed off sizable exposures of rock in the river bottom.”


Creation Evidence Museum, displaying purported evidence for creationism. The museum sponsors continuing paleontological and archaeological excavations among other research projects, including a hunt for living pterodactyls in Papua New Guinea, and expeditions to Israel. Materials from the museum have been recommended by the National Council on Bible Curriculum in Public Schools, but the NCBCPS curriculum has been deemed "unfit for use in public school classrooms."

The first hyperbaric biosphere

One of the museum's research projects is a "hyperbaric biosphere", a chamber designed to reproduce atmospheric conditions that the researchers postulate for Earth before the Great Flood. This allows experiments designed to test the effect of such conditions on lifespan and physical size. It is claimed to have tripled the lifespan of fruit-flies, and detoxified copperhead snakes.”

Dinosaur World Glen Rose, Texas. Dinosaur World Glen Rose, Texas

“Tourism is big business in Glen Rose and most of the credit has to go to dinosaurs that trekked through the area 113 million years ago.”

From me: There sure is a lot to see and do in Granbury and Glen Rose, TX, and enjoy seeing this great state with y’all.



On This Day:

U.S. and British begin Berlin Airlift, Jun 26, 1948:

“On this day in 1948, U.S. and British pilots begin delivering food and supplies by airplane to Berlin after the city is isolated by a Soviet Union blockade.

When World War II ended in 1945, defeated Germany was divided into Soviet, American, British and French zones of occupation. The city of Berlin, though located within the Soviet zone of occupation, was also split into four sectors, with the Allies taking the western part of the city and the Soviets the eastern. In June 1948, Josef Stalin's government attempted to consolidate control of the city by cutting off all land and sea routes to West Berlin in order to pressure the Allies to evacuate. As a result, beginning on June 24 the western section of Berlin and its 2 million people were deprived of food, heating fuel and other crucial supplies.

By July 15, an average of 2,500 tons of supplies was being flown into the city every day. The massive scale of the airlift made it a huge logistical challenge and at times a great risk. With planes landing at Tempelhof Airport every four minutes, round the clock, pilots were being asked to fly two or more round-trip flights every day, in World War II planes that were sometimes in need of repair.”


St. Lawrence Seaway opened, Jun 26, 1959:

“In a ceremony presided over by U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower and Queen Elizabeth II, the St. Lawrence Seaway is officially opened, creating a navigational channel from the Atlantic Ocean to all the Great Lakes. The seaway, made up of a system of canals, locks, and dredged waterways, extends a distance of nearly 2,500 miles, from the Atlantic Ocean through the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Duluth, Minnesota, on Lake Superior.

Work on the massive project was initiated by a joint U.S.-Canadian commission in 1954, and five years later, in April 1959, the icebreaker D'Iberville began the first transit of the St. Lawrence Seaway. Since its official opening, more than two billion tons of cargo, with an estimated worth of more than $300 billion, have moved along its canals and channels.”



Ray and I tackled quite a few jobs.   First, I showed him what I feed Misty and Prime, as you never know!  If I got “hit by a Mack truck” Misty would go to her late Dad’s former girlfriend, and Prime would go to my SPCA boss, as she is a foster.  But they would have to fed before they got there.  Though Prime doesn’t know she is a foster, she thinks I am her real ‘Mom’.

Then Ray got the little 2-step ladder in here, and we did a few high up things that I wouldn’t do when I am on my own.  I had bought a little doggie mom with 2 pups figurine thing that is made to sit on a corner, so he put it up on the trim to one of my doors. I had also bought some shower curtain rings that were in the shapes of different fish, so he installed them.  My winter comforter had already been washed and was put in a plastic case up in the top linen cupboard.

Then we went outside to the cargo trailer to see if the latest batch of brass hasps that I had bought would work on the bed base for storing it when the trailer is in toyhauler mode.  We found one that will work, but at the time the store didn’t have the swivel lock kind, so I need to exchange it for one of those.  We attached the one for the table base.  We also started to clean up the inside of “Pugsy”, my vintage motor home.  We had used it for storing the lumber taken out of the cargo trailer, nearly all of it was re-used in the rebuild of the insides. We were looking for one special piece as we need to install one more cabinet door in the cargo trailer.

Then we attacked the hedge, with all the rain it had grown up again.  But when Ray and I do it, we weed inside and outside the fence, too. So that took up the rest of the morning until it was time to quit for lunch.

As I was eating my lunch, Jay called, asking for the number for Animal Control.  He said he had caught ‘something’.  Usually he would have said it was a cat.  If it had been an armadillo, possum or raccoon, he would have taken it down to the lake, and turned it loose.  So I cross-examined him and found out that he had trapped ‘Binkie’, the little black Chihuahua whose ‘Dad’ lets roam the streets. The Dad also has a white male Chihuahua, and Binkie had 7 babies not too long ago, all gone now.  I said to Jay, “You can’t send Binkie to the pound”, and Jay said that the Dad had gone to Minnesota to work for a year.  The Dad’s room mate was rude to Jay when he told her that she shouldn’t leave Binkie out in 100°heat, and she said that she didn’t want the dog. Binkie-Jun2012

So Misty and I went down there with a carrier and I have Binkie in my grooming room.  For once she didn’t have to go around the neighborhood begging for scraps, as she had a good dog food meal here.  I don’t know what to do with her yet, but I couldn’t let her be picked up by the pound. She is a very timid little dog, but she sure is enjoying all the extra attention that she hasn’t had for many a day.