Hikes, Photos, Stories, and Other (Gossamer) Stuff


My most recent hikes seem to get documented in my SmugMug nature photo archive long before (or if) they get a more formal treatment on this site. The most-recent event I've completely annotated with captions was a September 2013 car-camping and hiking trip in the American Desert Southwest. The hiking picture above was taken during a 2009 solo hike into Miter Basin in southeastern Sequoia National Park.

When I'm out hiking, I typically will use my SPOT tracker; you can check to see if I'm out and about, or have been recently.

I use Twitter occasionally; see my Twitter page for occasional updates, mostly outdoor adventures and occasional spontaneous haiku. I have a Facebook page too but that service is not worth the trouble… My conclusion is that Facebook is useful for looking at occasional Facebook updates sent me by others but is otherwise unsuited to my style, aesthetically or personally. For cycling & occasional running, I now use Strava. My athlete number/page can be seen here, but if you're not a Strava member (signup is free) you'll see little except a chart showing my miles per week and accumulated stats. I used Endomondo for a while to track rides, but concluded it was a buggy piece of junk.

My most-recent multi-day solo hike was my nine-day August 2011 Summer Ramble in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Captions are still lacking for that trip, but I intend to provide them "sometime after tomorrow."

My summer hike of 2008 was to Gardiner Basin in Kings Canyon National Park, a hidden jewel at the center of the Rae Lakes loop.

I solo-hiked the John Muir Trail non-stop and unresupplied, from July 4-14, 2007; view and read my Muir Trail narrative. Every photo I took (yikes, almost 500!) is at my photo archive of the trip.

For conditioning and gear testing, I did some training hikes April-June 2007 in preparation for a planned hike along the John Muir Trail. The three final hikes were to the Hockett Plateau, Roaring River, and a loop out of Mineral King with Kaweah Gap at the northern end. I doubt I'll do trip narratives for those hikes, but I've posted photos with annotative comments.

Read about my February 2007 hike returning to Pinto Basin in Joshua Tree National Park.

My summer hike in 2006 was to Laurel Basin in Sequoia National Park; among other events, I scattered some of my father's ashes and then returned home to find out if I needed further treatment for colon cancer.

I started this web site by documenting a hike in Joshua Tree National Park in late April 2006 where I flirted with heatstroke. I am a bit wiser now.

I formerly made electronic notes during hikes through 2010 with an ancient hand-me-down Treo 90. I've transitioned to using my iPhone instead, which works great and has plenty of battery for many weeks of note-taking as long as it's in Airplane Mode.

"Hike by yourself? What, are you CRAZY?" Perhaps not; check out my perspective and that of others.

Atop Peak 12362, Sept. 2005, southern Sierra Nevada. Kaweah Peaks in background on right. Click on photo for larger version.


My SmugMug site now has numerous photo collections where you can get glimpses into my life, including:


Cycle-touring in France

My True Love

Stories and Writings

Here's a meditation I wrote and presented at a JPL Green Club meeting on shopping bags (I'm such a troublemaker.)

And if that shopping bag article wasn't troublesome enough, then try this article on Ecoheroes.

Story snippet from "No License Required", on hold but still in the queue.

I attended the SpaceOps 2008 conference, for which I was the lead author of a paper; you may view the entire paper for free, thanks to the AIAA. You may view a photo of our poster as well.

Another AIAA paper that talks about the data tracking system I use to keep tabs on all the data coming down from MRO can be accessed here.

Lots more in my archives; I'll be putting various bits here as time goes on. As my friend Bill says, "Everything takes forever."

Other (Gossamer) Stuff

Yes, I was the pilot of the Gossamer Condor and Gossamer Albatross pedal-powered aircraft, flying both of them to prize-winning flights in the 1970s. Below you'll find a few Gossamer aircraft resources.

Various Gossamer Aircraft photos are at Don Monroe's page.

You may view slides from a talk I gave in March 2011 on the occasion of Aerovironment's 40th anniversary.

A web interview with me talking about human-powered blimps and Gossamer airplanes can be found at a site called Aerial Canoe.

Gossamer Gathering 2007 photos.

A fairly large PDF (836 KB) detailing the flight of the Gossamer Albatross across the English Channel in 1979, by Ron Moulton et al. The file does not seem to display all pages from within some browsers, but downloading it and then reading it with a PDF viewer seems to work OK.

An excellent resource for human-powered flight information is at the Royal Aeronautical Society's website. Yes, there are still several prize competitions waiting to be won.

Wonder how many human-powered aircraft I've flown? Find out the answer! (another ~800KB PDF.)

How many world records have I set, and how many do I still hold? Look here for the numbers (the Gossamer Condor flight preceded any official category, and the Bionic Bat flight seems not to have been submitted for a record.)

Here's a video of a presentation to the JPL Bike Club that I gave about human powered flight on March 20th, 2008.

The White Dwarf pedal-powered blimp that we built for Gallagher in 1984 was eventually sold to some folks in Oregon who flew it for several years before the envelope finally failed during a yearly over-pressure test.

And finally, I can recommend a truly remarkable on-line resource: a detailed history of human-powered flight, complete with many, many photos.

Other (other) Stuff

My Wikipedia entry.

My "Martian" bio at ZipCodeMars, now rather outdated (last updated June 2007.)

Comments? Contact me at: bryanlallen@gmail.com