Brian's Morning Newsletter
Thursday, September 30th 2010
Okay, this is Desertgate's 35 foot tower near our ranch in Las Tusas, near Sapello. This is also the tower my relay tower connects to from the next ridge over. The above image is from my ultra-non-smart-phone (if it isn't smart, then is it stupid?) Anywho, this image is from 30 feet up, just above the tree tops looking south-east toward Las Vegas.
This angle is obviously toward Hermits Peak to the west. This is the direction we headed next. Internet points are notated as "Hops" when it comes to towers, it is easier to visualize a hop, the signal shoots from one tower to the next as the signal strings along its way.
I think this is the last image from the 30 foot tower. Below the photovoltaic panels Eric sits in a nylon folding chair busily clicking away on his laptop. The sun is very brilliant and the PV array provides a bit of shade so he can see the screen. This is the second or third time I've ascended this tower, I felt confident and comfortable in the climbers rig, which part of can be seen as an orange strap on my thigh above the bluejeans.
When we arrived at the next WiFi hop in Las Dispensas which is close to the base of Hermits Peak, I had mixed feelings about climbing this tower, after all it is twice the height. Eric was having all his typical fun figuring out some kind of backup route networking upgrade, while I was getting more and more excited and antsy to climb this tower. Finally as the sun was setting behind Hermits Peak Eric, seemed to be having even more fun peering through binoculars than he was programming was all the way up to the top, asking me whose house was whose, I couldn't take it any longer, I finally blurted out, "Let me look!"
We were looking toward Canoncito trying to locate someplace, anyplace where we might be able to shoot a signal into that canyon. Unfortunately we could see no rooftops, no structures of any kind, in Canyoncito. That valley is isolated by tall canon walls. We could see one little piece of the road, we think, possibly west of the Bahia school and or Fire station, with no discernible structures, it is very hard to say where the open valley we saw from up in the sky above Cary Lane's home in the mountains was.
On the way up, at one point, I figured it was about the same height as the first tower, I hooked the harness to the tower and began to rest, " Eric says," Dude you are only about half way up." It was really fun, I wasn't scared or tired at all, and as soon as I started breathing normally again, I continued on up. The guy-wire below me in the above photo is at around 30 feet. Cary for unknown reasons keeps a ping-pong table and a trampoline down near the tower base. I think I'd rather land on the trampoline, but it really isn't a concern, the climbing harness is very reassuring and secure.
Cary has a neat addition to this tower in their off-grid home back yard; a steel cable running top to bottom with a positive catching slider which is attached to the harness. This enables the climber to simply climb the tower without the need to hook and unhook every step of the way.
One of the many things which amazed me was the feeling when I breached the tree tops. The whole world went from the deep green tone of the pine forest below to a instant open sky feeling, reminding me of the many flights Steve Murphy took me on. One minute you feel connected to the ground, then in a flash the ground gives way and the world appears around you in a completely different perspective. Glorious.
One step up, from the tree tops, everything changes.
Climbing the 70 foot tower is a very big accomplishment for me. This is something I always wanted to try, and now it is done. Will I move on to the next challenge? I'm not even sure what the next challenge is; I've always wanted to see Peru while I have the health to hike.
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