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COVID-19 Update 10/27/2020

COVID-19 has been hard on Adventurer's Project.  Trail promotion has been put on hold this year.  And we're looking cohesion with what numbers we have.  I was hoping that this would be mostly behind us by now.

I just had gull bladder surgery and I'm on the tail end of recovering from a hairline fracture on my left ankle.  We have extensive modifications to do on the Whipple Section in The Wayne (National Forest). They all have to do with benching, which is widening the tread of the trail.  But the project's support base is a little "green" for the rigors of that. Its been just me and personnel from the forest service on that one.

I'm tempted to go into towns and hold up a sign on the side of roads to try and boost support for the project.

There's a number of supporters that I could take down trail for their first time.  But the deer gun seasons starts here in 24 days.


Bluetooth Receiver Mounted and Wired

 I just installed a Bluetooth car stereo into my custom built 99 inch long desk here in my office, which I like to refer to as Adventurer's Project's headquarters.  My house is very formal.  It's a Victorian on what some of us like to call "Millionaires Row" in Woodsfield.  It's currently 127 years old.  It has mocha colored walls and dark stained archways and mounding for the most part.  When I moved in, it didn't accept me for who I was... I accepted it for what it is.

But it's given me wonderful opportunities.  I'm 37, I don't have any children and have never been married.  My living room will be a wonderful place to entertain guests and give presentations.  But my office is my favorite part of the house.  And the Bluetooth car stereo is the latest edition.

I'm powering it with a spare 250 watt computer power supply.  I have it suspended from the bottom of the desk with some heavy duty double sticky tape.  I was apprehensive at first about possibly blowing every circuit in my house, but I can field strip a computer and build it back up again.  Once I got the right wires, it was ridiculously simple from there.

The power supply unit (PSU) that I used didn't have a switch mounted to it.  But in the motherboards power harness, there is a wire for the computer case's switch.  I tried to use a spare case power switch, but it acted like a reset switch and wouldn't power on without holding it down.  I realized what was going on as the motherboard circuitry only needed a momentary jump.  So, I went down the street to the auto parts store and got a toggle switch that I wired in.  My systems have an economical sleep and hibernation cycles.  But the stereo's PSU isn't apart of those systems, so it will just run continuously unless turned off. 

I had two 6 x 9 speakers that fell out of their mounts in my van.  I brought them in and put them on the new book shelf that I mounted to the opposite wall in my office.  My office is one room that does not need to be in conformity with the house, so I just routed the speaker wires up along the ceiling from the book shelves to the opposite end of the desk, then along it's bottom side.  There's still one more thing that the desk needs and that is speaker wire terminals on the back side.  The reason being is that the desk is on wheels.  It was designed to move so I can more easily vacuum behind it.

The office is small.  And given the mobile nature of the desk, I can't afford to have things stationed on the desk, or on the floor.  So the project with mounting and wiring the car stereo to the desk itself became practical.  Plus, I got the Bluetooth receiver for $17 out the door from Walmart.  I couldn't pass it up.  I paid $50 for my last one.

This system frees up a little desk space.  I was using a small, cube shaped mono speaker for The Robot's sound before.  But a few hours ago, I was listening to a digital copy of the "Unplugged" album by The Corrs and over the new system, it was crystal clear for such a wonderful record.  And I love that the unit is right next to my computer work area because it's built in call microphone is very close.  I'm thinking that my callers will be able hear me more clearly on it's version of a speakerphone.  


Diplomatic Theory

 There's a difference between having the desire to fight and the ability to win.  In the backcountry, you can have all the differences with rural people all that you want.  But it's not the way to sustainability of the trail.  Resistance to the trail, it's hikers versus the public is not practical, or efficient.  They'll just produce a poorly functioning machine if it does work.

In front wheel drive cars, when it's stuck on a slick of mud or ice, it's not wise to torque the drive wheels.  Your more likely to get free by using minimum power.  More often than not, more torque worsens their situations.  The way out is through what I call "backcountry diplomacy."  They likely don't trust oratories like mine (I have to curtail it).  They're what some people call simpler.  You don't humor them with all the internal politics of an organization.  Instead, you recognize that you're a visitor in their home and you do things their way.  If you do, in this area, that's the way to win.

A favorite metaphor of mine is the Catholic Saint Patrick.  He was known for the miracle of expelling all the snakes out of Ireland.  But his ability to convert the Celtics to Christianity is something that is noteworthy in light of this blog.  Saint Patrick apparently had difficulty converting the pagans at first.  It wasn't until he modified certain Christian symbols that they started converting in groves because the population recognized their importance.  Our approach of getting them to change and identify with hiking has been flawed.  What we have to do with distance hiking trails is figure out how they think, what they value and make what they already do apart of the fabric of what we do.


Largest Cities

The most populated incorporated area on the Buckeye Trail is the City of Cincinnati, Ohio.  On the North Country Trail, it is Dayton, Ohio.  And on the American Discovery Trail, it is City and County of San Francisco in California.


Money, Sticky Topic

 Money.  We can equate it to our own money.  But in non and not for profit organizations, it's not just our money... its everyone's money.  A board of directors in an organization gets to be prudent.  An organization is in constant evolution and that progresses every year that it operates.  It grows what I'd coin as an "internal operating environment" that get passed down from one era to the next.  It's an establishment.

 At the writing of this blog, it's been about 52 years since the anti-establishment.  As good as some think that was, it's had an negative effect on non and not for profits.  Sure they're buildings are all over the United States, but that doesn't show what's actually going on.

As a student in high school and college, I was a member of several organizations.  But their skills and prowess were probably depleted by the anti-establishment long before I came around?  I think that because of our youth that they were the hardest hit?  They weren't good.  And they're a poor example to use in comparison.

In non and not for profits, their boards deal in things like risks, liabilities, insurances and sometimes investments.  Even under the most tranquil environments, money issues can become sticky?  So when somebody wants to come in and do something revolutionary that could POSSIBLY have big gains, they sometimes don't have a contingency plan for what if their idea doesn't work.

For this, I have some suggestions.  1) take the collective treasury out of the equation and self fund experimental programming.  And 2) proceed slower, or smaller? Break your idea apart, experiment and produce a track record.  With events, I can tell you that when formulating a proper plan describing the who, what, when, where, why, how, cost, attire and who's affected, there's different individual elements that emerge.  And just because an event failed does not mean that every element did.  Therefore, we can perform an "after action review" and determine these.  And perhaps we'd find that one particular element was out of adjustment, which caused the event to fail?  As for everything else, perhaps they were spot on.


Future Prospects

 When it comes to the Miami & Erie Canal Towpath, I have conveyed the idea that it should be opened up to trailside dispersed camping.  When I was planning a 8,000 mile transcontinental hike, I did business with about 14 different distance trail agencies.  And one thing in particular that I noticed on the Pacific Crest Trail was in Olympic National Park.  Apparently, there was either impressionable areas, or inhospitable terrain (I can't remember).  But I do think that I remember them stating that instead of traditional dispersed camping, that they offered "trailside."  

The Miami & Erie and Wabash & Erie Canal Tow and Heel Paths can be rather wooded.  But it's a canal.  The parcels that it sits on is like a narrow corridor.  Dispersed as it's commonly known wouldn't be possible.  But trailside could be?

Word around from years ago is that ODNR actually conducted the studies needed to install hiking shelters along the Miami & Erie Canal.  Apparently, the passed the process and may just be standing by for somebody to build one?  If this is true, then they could be standing by for Eagle Scout projects.  That process would entail a youth Eagle Scout going from an idea to a plan, getting it passed through the adult leadership, gathering supplies and money and then literately leading the effort on the ground, coordinating people and supplies?  But in the meantime, could it be consistent with the finding of those studies to open those areas up as suitable tent sites while they're waiting for a shelter to be built?

Future prospects can be good.  But you still have to grapple with the present.



 I was looking up the definition for the word "pragmatic."  That word might define part of my leadership style?  Although, I am somewhat hybrid.  In some things, I am certain.  My brand of certainty has this calm feeling to me that has a certain meditative quality to it.