Buck's Blog

The Stream-of-Consciousness Journal of a Wargamer

Rocky Mountain National Park

| June 28, 2013

After a short drive from our hotel near Aspen, we arrived at the western entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park. The views along the highway during our drive were impressive.  Though shot through the windshield of the car, you can see in this picture that I-70 running eastward was at one level and running westward […]

Arches National Park

| June 27, 2013

After a couple more hours at Disneyland, we got on the road for a grueling drive through the Mojave to Moab, UT, to see Arches National Park. Along the way we passed by Barstow, CA, the site of the National Training Center, and Victorville, the site of the DARPA robotic car Urban Challenge.  We also […]


| June 26, 2013

After a short interlude in our vacation for me to attend a work meeting, we continued to Anaheim, CA, for a couple days at the Disneyland resort.  While Walt didn’t like the hotels, t-shirt shops, and other commercialization that built up around Disneyland (which is why he purchased so much land in Florida), a nice […]

Down the Oregon and California Coasts

| June 22, 2013

We began this leg of the trip with a visit to Cape Meares state park in Oregon to get a view of the Pacific ocean and to see a light house and the Octopus Tree. From this view, we were all convinced that this is where they filmed a couple of the scenes from the […]

Mount Rainier National Park

| June 19, 2013

We finally reached Mount Rainier about 1130.  Mount Rainier was the fifth designated National Park.  The United States has 59 national parks, which are operated by the National Park Service, an agency of the Department of the Interior.  National parks must be established by an act of the United States Congress. The first national park, Yellowstone, was signed into law by President Ulysses […]

The drive to Mount Rainier National Park

| June 19, 2013

Yesterday morning we left Spokane for a two-and-a-half hour drive to Mount Rainier National Park.  Initially we drove through a lot of desert-like terrain until we crossed the mountains at White Pass and entered central/western Washington. Once we got to the “green” part of WA, the views were spectacular. We stopped at a roadside turn […]

Day Five

| June 19, 2013

This day was mainly a travel day to get us from Glacier to striking distance of Mount Ranier, but to break up the monotony of the drive we stopped to spend 90 minutes at the Crystal Gold mine in Kellog, MT. The mine was opened in 1879 and closed in 1881.  It was lost until […]

Second installment of vacation photos

| June 17, 2013

The second phase of this year’s vacation involved two days in Glacier National Park.  Like many of the places we visit on these multi-state vacations, we could easily have spent a week here if we wanted to see all the sites and take all the hikes. We had to travel through most of Montana to […]

On the Road Again…

| June 15, 2013

Two weeks after moving into a new house, the Surdus began their annual multi-state romp.  I was on a business trip to the left coast the early part of the week, but instead of flying home, I flew to Minneapolis and met Candy and the kids there.   After linking up and getting the rental […]

HAWKs Expeditionary Force Attends Nashcon over Memorial Day Weekend

| June 11, 2013

It what is now a time-honored tradition, Dave, Chris, Greg, and I took a road trip to attend a non HMGS-East convention.  This year Don joined us as we headed to Nashcon in Nashville, TN.  We rented a U-Haul, hooked it to Dave’s Subaru and headed down, just minutes after I closed on a new […]