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Thread: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

  1. Link to Post #41
    Mexico Avalon Member seko's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    I'm In!!
    Breathe in the air

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    New Zealand Avalon Member daddy fishwick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Love the idea! Yes please Bill and I hope you thoroughly enjoy the hike mate!
    DADDY NUGGETT

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    Avalon Member Neal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Hey Bill, sign me up for another trip - I'll join you in spirit! Good luck and Godspeed.

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    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    .
    Off now.

    (Mara the was surprised and delighted to be given a big breakfast at 3 am )

    The list of 38 names, with printed, laminated Avatars, that I'll deposit in a sealed container under a cairn at 14,000 ft:
    • 42
    • Alberto e Daniela
    • Anchor
    • Angel of the Mists
    • animovado
    • avid
    • Billy
    • Bluegreen
    • ceetee9
    • daddy fishwick
    • Debra
    • Ewan
    • fourty-two
    • Foxie Loxie
    • ghostrider
    • Gracy May
    • Jean-Marie
    • Joe Sustaire
    • kanishk
    • kiwikid
    • lightwalker
    • markenty13
    • mojo
    • Mysteria
    • Nasu
    • Neal
    • nomadguy
    • Ron Mauer Sr (+ Bruno and Frodo )
    • seko
    • Shannon
    • sheme
    • Sierra
    • Sstarss
    • sunwings
    • TEOTWAIKI
    • Tyy1907
    • Vasili
    • watermunky

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  9. Link to Post #45
    Avalon Member avid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Take care, look forward to your news on return ❤️
    The love you withhold is the pain that you carry
    and er..
    "Chariots of the Globs" (apols to Fat Freddy's Cat)

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  11. Link to Post #46
    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Quote Posted by Bill Ryan (here)
    Quote Posted by Bill Ryan (here)

    It's raining today, and tomorrow's forecast has changed to look rather more cloudy
    In fact, the rain turned into an unforecasted deluge... if I'd been at 14,000 ft, I'd have been trapped in a h*** of a storm up there. (And it might not be the best idea to seek shelter in the nearest cave. )

    My instincts are telling me to hold off until the next window -- Saturday/Sunday, quite possibly, but it's all really changeable. In the meantime, please keep adding your names to the list: everyone is more than welcome.)

    Hello, Everyone – had a very wonderful day yesterday, with 38 of you all riding in my pocket.
    *note: high resolution image links are given below each reduced-size photo below. If you have good bandwidth, and are interested, I do recommend you click and take a good look at everything in the fine detail that’s in all the large photos.
    It was one of the most stunningly gorgeous places I've ever been. Either that, or I was so awash with endorphins my judgment was impaired.

    Or, maybe it was the perfect morning… or simply because (as you reading this may know) I’ve been planning to do this for quite some time. So it was all rather like Christmas coming for anyone who loves wilderness like this.

    It was quite easy to follow the stream up gradually to where the map said there was an unnamed large lake. It was as beautiful as it all looks here. Twisty quinoa trees and giant house-sized boulders everywhere, where whole families of Wawa Grandes could be living, and you’d never know.


    http://projectavalon.net/Mara_in_the_river.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/On_the_way_up_to_the_lakes.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/Heart_Lake.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/Mara_in_the_lake.jpg

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  13. Link to Post #47
    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    .
    I reached the big lake in 3 hours, and named it Lago Wawa Grande. (Nothing here is named on any maps.)


    http://projectavalon.net/Lago_Wawa_Grande_2.jpg

    Looking around for my target, some prominent place to leave the gifts and to build a cairn (a pile of rocks) with all the Avalon Avatars, my attention was drawn to a prominent rock outcrop overlooking the lake, with a 50 meter wide completely flat top to it. It was ideal, and obvious. I called it ‘The Altar’.


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Altar_from_a_distance.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Altar_overlooking the_lake.jpg

    The next thing that captured my attention was a very strange little cave, like a little lookout shelter, that had two anomalous rocks placed in front of it, sticking up vertically like shark’s teeth, that just looked artificial to me, very out of place. In the entire area, there was not one single other rock that stick up like that vertically: all the strata in the area are horizontal.


    http://projectavalon.net/The_lookout_cave.jpg

    They were way too large and heavy for a human to have moved. A very strong creature could have put them there, though. If they were natural, I have no idea how they ended up there. That was pretty interesting.

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  15. Link to Post #48
    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    .
    So, Mara and I made our way up to the Altar to establish a little camp while I gathered rocks to build the cairn. I left the gifts beside it, laid out on display. A creature with good wild eyesight could see them clearly from the entire mountainside above. No human is ever likely to go up there anytime soon.


    http://projectavalon.net/Building_the_Cairn_1.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/Building_the_Cairn_2.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/Building_the_Cairn_3.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Cairn_1.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Cairn_2.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Cairn_3.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Cairn_4.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Gifts_1.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Gifts_2.jpg

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  17. Link to Post #49
    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    .
    Here's a telephoto shot of the Cairn from about a quarter mile away:


    http://projectavalon.net/The_Cairn_from_a_distance.jpg

    And I took this last photo just as we were heading down again.


    http://projectavalon.net/Lago_Wawa_Grande.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/Location_of_The_Altar.gif

    The entire area is like a little Shangri-La. The location of the Altar is shown by a little arrow on the map, a few miles south of the red circle. (Barely visible... you'd need to enlarge it.)

    As you can also see from the map, there’s much more up there, too. One really needs to set up a camp for a couple of nights, and then one can wander around all over the place, fast and light. My next goal is to go up there again in a few weeks’ time, to see if the gifts are still there.


    Last edited by Bill Ryan; 10th October 2016 at 00:35.

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    United States Moderator (on Sabbatical) Shannon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Beautiful. Thank you, for all of it.

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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Totally amazing!! I have been breathlessly awaiting the photos!! Will be looking at them many, many times! Thank you, Bill, for including all of us along on your adventure! So grateful!!

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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Muchas, muchas gracias!
    Thank you, thank you to you both for sharing.


    Click image for larger version

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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Thanks for taking us along to such an awesome place; it was the best vicarious hike I've ever been in on

    Great photos and a very cool altar with gifts; Job Well Done!

    Being a topo map-freak, I really got a WaWa feeling when I zoomed in on the high-rez version.

    I've never seen so many "Sin Nombres" on any kind of map; it does the soul good to know that such a place still exists.

    In my mind's eye, I see all the little WaWa's youngins wrestling over who gets to wear the beaded star necklace.
    Last edited by TEOTWAIKI; 9th October 2016 at 23:46.

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  27. Link to Post #54
    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Quote Posted by TEOTWAIKI (here)
    Thanks for taking us along to such an awesome place; it was the best vicarious hike I've ever been in on
    Made me laugh!

    Quote Posted by TEOTWAIKI (here)

    Being a topo map-freak, I really got a WaWa feeling when I zoomed in on the high-rez version.

    I've never seen so many "Sin Nombres" on any kind of map; it does the soul good to know that such a place still exists.
    Yes, for sure. (For others reading this, 'Sin Nombre' means the lake or river has never been given a name.)

    Quote Posted by TEOTWAIKI (here)

    In my mind's eye, I see all the little WaWa's youngins wrestling over who gets to wear the beaded star necklace.
    Like the empty coke bottle in The Gods Must Be Crazy. Not just a joke!

    I thought seriously about what to leave again in the off-chance (has to be a non-zero possibility) that the gifts have been taken. I'm clean out of necklaces, so I thought of maybe something practical.

    A knife is dangerous, and not a good idea. A solar flashlight would be really useful to them, but there's only one of it, and it'd be rather like the ETs leaving advanced technology to early humans -- maybe not a good idea either.

    So I'm settling on a length of thin but strong nylon cord. That can be cut (by them) and shared, it's very cheap, harmless, I have lots of it, it won't rot, break, or ever stop being useful, and would also be really valuable to them in a ton of ways.

    The idea would be to keep going up and leaving useful things (assuming they're taken!) ... and then, at some point, set up a trail cam. It's all above the treeline, but I could secure it to a large boulder, or a small stake in the ground.

    All wishful thinking, but a lot of harmless fun, and it's a spectacularly beautiful area. I'm intending to go back up there again in the next few days to see if anything's been disturbed or removed. I'd be very confident no humans would possibly have been anywhere near the place in the last week.
    Last edited by Bill Ryan; 15th October 2016 at 23:07.

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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    That was really nice to see the photos and it was a wonderful thought to be a part. Did you have a feeling this would make good Squatch country, or see any sign on the way? Can you make it a double-header hunting Bigfoot & ufos?...

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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Thank you Bill, great pics. Fingers crossed that those big babies take the well meaning offering. It looks like amazing terrain to explore, especially with Mara. It was wonderful of you to include us....x.... N

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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Thanks - I enjoyed the photos.

    Quote Posted by Bill Ryan (here)
    ... and then, at some point, set up a trail cam. It's all above the treeline
    Sounds do-able but there is another angle to that - if you succeed - go and "prove" this way, you might start a chain of events that brings a whole lot more people with whole lot less respect than you have, which could end up ruining the harmony they enjoy and damage to the area.
    Those of the positive polarity are of service when by action or thought or even intention, another entity or the self is freer to seek his or her own path than before the intended service was performed. --L/Leema

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    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    Quote Posted by Bill Ryan (here)
    All wishful thinking, but a lot of harmless fun, and it's a spectacularly beautiful area. I'm intending to go back up there again in the next few days to see if anything's been disturbed or removed. I'd be very confident no humans would possibly have been anywhere near the place in the last week.
    Quote Posted by TEOTWAIKI (here)
    Thanks for taking us along to such an awesome place; it was the best vicarious hike I've ever been in on.
    Well, I went back up there again. Lots of photos below. (@TEOTWAIKI: this hike, an extension of the first one to explore more of the area, was even more spectacular.)

    First, the important thing: the cairn was completely undisturbed, and the gifts were all untouched. That's the key update. The rest of this account is a photomontage of the hike, which was actually quite something.

    I climbed a prominent mountain in the heart of the entire region, and went down the other side into an even more remote valley. In the first valley (where the Heart-shaped lake and the Altar were), I could see a few signs that people had visited there sometime before. In the second valley, to the east, there was nothing. It was like being on another planet, where there had never been any humans at all.

    As with the first report, below most of the photos is a link to a high-resolution version.

    Here's the map.



    I found a 4x4 dirt track (unfenced: would be unnerving for any passenger! ), which gained me 1,000 vertical ft from the main road.


    http://projectavalon.net/dirt_road_lg.jpg

    From where I could leave the vehicle, and this time knowing exactly where to go, I was able to make it up to the big lake below the Altar in a little over an hour, and was there by 8.30 am.

    The cairn hadn't been visited by man or beast in the previous 8 days. A little disappointing, but maybe not surprising -- and further confirmation of how very remote this all is.


    http://projectavalon.net/the_undisturbed_cairn_1_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/the_undisturbed_cairn_2_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/Altar_panor...ct_2016_lg.jpg

    But I was feeling in good shape, and Mara was too -- so next, we set out to climb the steep hillside above the Altar to where the map said it went up to over 4400 meters, or 14,500 ft.

    Last edited by Bill Ryan; 19th October 2016 at 19:00.

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  37. Link to Post #59
    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    .
    The last water source before starting the climb was a tiny tumbling creek. There I saw a hummingbird -- which was taking a bath in the stream, just above a small cascade. I watched it for about 20 mins, just a few feet away. It showed no signs of being aware of, or at all bothered by, myself or the dog.


    http://projectavalon.net/hummingbird..._bath_1_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/hummingbird..._bath_2_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/hummingbird..._bath_3_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/hummingbird..._bath_4_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/hummingbird..._bath_5_lg.jpg

    The haul up to the peak was strenuous: steep, no trail of any kind, and a lot of rough scrambling. This view is from the valley to the east, which I descended to. The route I took was the left-hand skyline.


    http://projectavalon.net/the_peak_lg.jpg

    The summit showed no signs of anyone ever having been there -- though it had surely been climbed before by someone. It's not the highest peak in the park (which I'd first thought it might be), but it's pretty close... it could well be the second highest. No easy way to know.


    http://projectavalon.net/the_summit_17_Oct_2016_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/the_summit_...ct_2016_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/Mara_on_the...ct_2016_lg.jpg

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  39. Link to Post #60
    UK Avalon Founder Bill Ryan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another vicarious adventure, and another Avalon Cairn (for the Wawa Grande, this time)

    .
    From the top, I could then look down to the east into the next valley. The map is very poor, and until I had a visual I had no idea if it'd be possible to get down there -- there could easily have been no way down without ropes, or maybe hidden cliffs in the way. (When going downhill, cliffs and rock steps can be hard to see from above.)



    But it seemed do-able. The route I took is behind the pyramid-shaped mountain to the left of the lake at the bottom of this post (i.e. away from the camera), and it was actually quite straightforward.


    http://projectavalon.net/the_view_to_the_east_lg.jpg

    Once I was about 500 ft below the summit I looked back up -- and spotted a herd of wild llamas in the rocks just below the peak. I couldn't see them at all until I was way below them, and could easily have missed them completely. They'd been tracking me (and Mara) all the way.


    http://projectavalon.net/llamas_just..._summit_lg.jpg


    http://projectavalon.net/llamas_just...cropped_lg.jpg



    http://projectavalon.net/llamas_at_14500_ft_lg.jpg



    http://projectavalon.net/llamas_at_1...lephoto_lg.jpg

    I was amazed. It clearly showed
    • how even large animals can be almost impossible to see,
    • how totally impossible it would be to see a large animal that was trying to hide, and
    • just how much food is up there for a large, clever animal that was hungry!)
    From then on, the way down the valley was easy and pristine. Not the tiniest sign on the ground that humans had ever been there. Mara and I both drank a lot of the very beautiful water there. (It was hot!)


    http://projectavalon.net/Mara_in_one...he_east_lg.jpg



    We were back at the vehicle by 1.30 pm. Although I left all the 38 printed Avatars untouched under the cairn, you all came with me on this trip, too -- and I do hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.

    The Wawa Grande? Well, it’d be a piece of cake for a large, intelligent animal to stay concealed, anywhere it wanted to. There could have been a whole bunch of them watching me and Mara, every minute of the way: we’d never have known. Food? Well, maybe that's why the llamas were way up at 14,500 ft, and not down in the valley where you’d think they’d be. And will we return? Most certainly.





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