Keenes SHT cache

Got out and grabbed a couple of caches today before work. First I headed over to Independence and picked up ghost's Fender Bender. I always wondered where that other trail went ghost - thanks - now I wonder where another one goes though (2nd left)... I'm sure over time you'll teach me. :)

After that I figured I'd run down and get IBcrashen and GonSolo's new cache (one of many), Keenes SHT, which is on one of my favorite trails (and in yet another part I haven't hiked).

I enjoyed the hike up the trail from the suggested parking coordinates (in front of the motel at Westgate). The trail takes you up the hill a ways, then skirts along the hill to the creek, then it's back up hill.

Once I got to the first stage of this multi and searched for a while I started to understand things that DLHCacher had told me earlier. His log states that he looked at the first stage many times before actually seeing it. I spent about 45 minutes there and was about ready to give up when Esko came down the trail (and pretty much scared the crap out of me). After he showed up I decided to stick around and try and find it with him (caching with two is always easier than doing it solo, plus I wasn't sure when I'd be able to get back there during daylight hours). I managed to find the first stage after about 10 more minutes of searching (lucky him). The rest of the cache was basically uneventful, other than both of us walking right past the final and not seeing it at first (those regular size caches sure can be tough to find...)

Minnesota passes statewide smoking ban

Governor Tim Pawlenty signed the Freedom to Breathe Act into law on Wednesday, after it passed the House and Senate with fairly wide margins (81-48 and 43-21, respectively). The ban fines patrons (and business owners who allow it) $300 for smoking in a bar, restaurant, bowling alley, VFW, American Legion, country club lounge and other establishments starting October 1st. It does not cover the outdoors (although I believe some county bans do), private homes/vehicles, motels, and a few other minor exceptions.

There's a lot of discussion already about how this will hurt small businesses (bars) in rural Minnesota. I think that, for the most part, those businesses will not loose business over the long run, although I'm sure that there will be some that go out of business due to the ban.

I for one am all for the ban. It's about time.

Blind man denied gun permit in Minnesota

Finally something that seems to make sense.

A legally blind man from North Dakota is appealing a decision by the Clay County (MN) Sheriff to deny him a permit to carry in Minnesota. The laws in MN require that "a person should be able to show proficiency on the firing range and a proficiency of the weapons." Carey McWilliams of Fargo feels that he can do that, yet he's legally blind.

He says "It would be self-defense, at point-blank range, with ammo that doesn't go any further than the assailant." I for one have never heard of ammo that only goes as far as the assailant and then drops to the ground. I Googled for it a little bit but was unable to find anything about this special ammo that McWilliams is using.

Unfortunately (for the residents of Fargo/Moorhead), McWilliams is allowed to carry in Minnesota due to a reciprocity agreement with Utah (where he is licensed). Good job Utah!

Charlie Brown: Linus

If you hate crossword puzzles then you're going to hate this cache. There's no easier way to put that.

I'll get you started on this cache. To finish the puzzle below won't get you to the cache without the rest of the information but it WILL give you a significant head start.

I don't believe any of the remaining information from the cache page will assist you in solving the puzzle below (there are no more hints).

These clues are also provided in a text file.

1. Traveled in a peloton
2. Apt description for a two-year-old?
3. Protected
4. Hodgepodge
5. Top worn with a driver in hand?
6. Johnny Suede
7. A basis for comparison, especially using gold
8. Linus and Lucy
9. Hackman and Borgnine's Adventure
10. Dagwood
11. Most reflective
12. One with a shrill, sharp cry
13. Setting for The Big Sleep and To Kill a Mockingbird
14. String and chaos, et. al.
15. Indian clay ovens
16. Type of security
17. Transmitted data in real-time
18. 1765 law repealed in 1766
19. Stovepipes and ten-gallons
20. Complete and all-encompassing
21. Melds of seven cards
22. Job for Bench
23. Japanese moral codes
24. Candide author
25. Cereal once endorsed by the Lone Ranger
26. Justine and Jason
27. Aged and became full-flavored
28. "Dexter" network
29. Soothing balm
30. Covered with damp fungus
31. Act like Spider-Man
32. Lead-in to "slope" and "when wet"
33. What #51 have done in #55 for years
34. Without mistake
35. Noon, or later, or earlier, if you like
36. HBO western
37. Cheats or dupes
38. Barren, like a plain
39. Makes the deal more appealing
40. Simon and Garfunkel album
41. For "p implies q," "q implies p"
42. Humanitarian emblem established under the first Geneva Convention
43. America, to Columbus
44. British twenty-ones
45. Two-word adjective for Lucas Jackson
46. Novice
47. MLB's _______ of Anaheim
48. Those with innate talent
49. Siegel and Shuster, for example
50. Type of personality
51. Seasonal residents of #55
52. Branch of classical mechanics dealing with motion
53. Employees in training, often
54. Log holders
55. Florida city facing the Gulf of Mexico
56. Used cars, often
57. Highway accident

Fishing on Basswood

Had a great time fishing this past few days in the Boundary Waters. The fishing was not the greatest (perhaps the worst it's been in the 7 or so years I've been going), although we still had a good time.

We lucked out quite a bit with the weather as well - it rained a little bit on Sunday night after we were all sleeping, then again on Monday night and for a few hours into Tuesday morning. It's amazing just how dry the ground is up there. Tuesday morning, after some light rain, you could kick your foot in the ground and find dry, dusty ground perhaps a half inch under the surface.

Check out some of the pictures from the weekend.

Closing the Boundary Waters?

Could the Boundary Waters be closed soon due to the fire danger that exists? Apparently.

Jim Sanders, supervisor for the U.S. Forest Service, says that he'd have no qualms about closing the Boundary Waters if Mother Nature doesn't cooperate and bring in some rain.

Moisture levels in the area are low for sure - we've had a drought for two years now, and this winter had an abnormally small amount of snow fall. Heck, as the Star Tribune points out, the ice just disappeared from the northern lakes a couple of weeks ago and we're already seeing the worst fire in recent Minnesota history. Normally wildfires occur in July and August, the hotter and drier months of the year, not May.

If it's like this now, what will it be like in July or August?

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