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Vladimir

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About Vladimir

  • Birthday 09/24/1950

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  • Website URL
    http://www.usbackroads.blogspot.com
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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    eastern Washington
  • Interests
    Camping, fly fishing, bird hunting, astronomy, photography, hiking, and everything else outdoors.

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Vladimir's Achievements

  1. California for the worst roads, particularly for their state highways. I lived and worked in California in the 1970's and as a Forester traveled most of the state. When I retired in 2007 I made it a point to visit all the timber sales, campgrounds, etc. etc. that I had a hand in building. Well, all those state highways in California.....are just like 1970 with 10 times the traffic!! 40 years and the roads are still the same and in poor maintenance. TRUE STORY.....I was traveling up I-5 to Oregon towing my tent trailer. Everything exploded. I pulled over at a Wal-Mart in Oregon to replace the battery box and all the damage done by the rough roads in California. I left my Swiss Army knife on the roof of the tent trailer. TWO HUNDRED miles later I pull over at a rest area and noticed that my Swiss Army knife was STILL on the roof of the tent trailer. I would give Oregon the award for best roads....but I wouldn't send my kids to school there!@!!. Bad schools, good roads. See pictures....leaving California. Thank god....after that I was in Nevada. https://usbackroads.blogspot.com/2012/12/davis-camp-park-bullhead-city-arizona.html?m=0
  2. We had the same issue on the National Forest in eastern Washington. When I compared citations written to a statistical survey of our visitors I found that the percentages were pretty much a perfect match. That is both locals and western Washington residents got citations in almost the exact same proportions as their use!!! People are people. That doesn't change by location. Visitors from other states, farther away, might be "better" stewards. They are wealthier and seek out faraway places.
  3. The Federal data bases are NOT linked due to Federal laws primarily due to immigration laws passed by Congress that keep the Federal agencies from sharing information. For most natural born Americans it doesn't matter. For me, when I filed for Social Security they denied my application. They would NOT take the following items: My citizenship papers, when I became a US citizen. My PERSONAL US government passport. A photo-copy of my OFFICIAL US government passport, traveling on US government business overseas. AND the topper on the cake....a US government pension based on working for the Federal government for 30 years (you have to be a citizen to be a Federal employee...with rare exceptions). At the end of all this, I did ask Social Security what their computers showed as my status in this country. She looked it up and said...."foreign national". Right...that ended in October, 1969. I understand that Social Security is probably a little behind in updating their computer databases.
  4. In some ways....a pretty funny discussion. I started boondocking, before trying any other form of camping. So to me it was a progression of learning how to deal with campgrounds and in particular RV campgrounds. Just do it....and see if you like it. You won't die. You won't freeze. The worst that can happen is you will run out of water and have to go a day without a shower.
  5. The public land are "dangerous" places particularly for urban folks. They just do not realize that THEY are responsible for THEIR OWN SAFETY. Having worked for the BLM, FS, and NPS. Let me tell you, getting lost on a NPS trail is difficult for most folks. In 2003, we lost four firefighters in a burn over, and OSHA cited the Forest Service "because a FOREST FIRE is an UNSAFE work environment". That is fine, so should the Forest Service stop putting out forest fires because it is a unsafe work environment?? Good thing OSHA doesn't oversee the US Military!!! Likewise, the past 50 years or so the story has been that nature is somehow gentle, kind and wise. It isn't. It is brutal and uncaring particularly for those caught unawares of which there are more and more wandering the public lands. The land management agencies take care of hazards on a NEED basis. There are very limited financial resources particularly for the BLM and FS. The pavement rule is a good rule of thumb. IF there is pavement, the agencies are pretty careful about safety issues. The farther you go from the pavement setting, to gravel, to dirt, to nothing the less the agencies do about safety. THEY ASSUME YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR DOING. In my last job with the Forest Service, we had 10,000 miles of various trails from hiking, horse, motorcycle, bicycle, snowmobile, snowshoe, x-country ski, and several interpretive trails. There were probably a thousand of miles of trail that probably saw a Forest Service employee once every ten years!!! Should the Forest Service close those trails to public use??? I am a firm believer that the public lands belong to the public and should be open for public use. On my National Forest we had five snowmobile fatalities every year like clockwork. The causes were snowmobiling in a avalanche chute (called high pointing, do a search on high pointing snowmobile), speeding and being drunk while operating a snow machine, speeding, hypothermia while knowing where you are, and hypothermia when lost. So what should the Federal agencies do about the above problems?? It seems like that is a personal responsibility. Blaming the NPS for getting lost on a trail, will result in the trail being closed to public use. A costly analysis, to see how to fix the issue, and a expenditure of lots of tax dollars to "improve" the trail or more likely closure of the trail to public use. For years there has been "talk" of limiting public use of wild lands to those that show a compentency in outdoor travel. Is this where we want this to go???
  6. It depends where your working. Concessionaire hosts are NOT covered by typical Federal wage and overtime laws. There is a "special" law that applies to concessionaire hosts and ski area workers. I did administer the concessionaire program for the Forest Service on a National Forest. A Department of Labor investigator called me about a complaint regarding labor laws and the concessionaire program. He was pretty hot under the collar, and I told him that the Forest Service would comply with any of his findings. I never heard from him again. I have to admit up front I am not a fan of concessionaire campgrounds on public lands. One of our Ranger Districts did an analysis of the Forest Service taking back operational management of the campgrounds. He said it penciled out, IF we paid our employees minimum wage for 30 hours and required them to donate 10 hours a week!! I don't think we EVER want to be in the position of the Federal government "requiring" their employees to "donate" their work hours!! Thankfully, it is illegal. So think about it. A non-profit, the Federal government, cannot provide the same level of service as a FOR-PROFIT corporation. The difference was made up by the employees of the concessionaires. That said, we had some great concessionaire operations. We had one or two awful companies that we cancelled their permits. Bless, the campground hosts, they do a great job for very little pay. Would I do it?? NO, but some people do not have the choice. Treat them kindly.
  7. I read the book. It was an interesting read for RV'ers. Not sure how it would appeal to other people. I can see where it would work better as a movie than a book. It was available as an e-book in my library, but that was over a year ago.
  8. No....they LOVE cats. It is a real dinner treat for coyotes. I believe we have fed six cats to coyotes over the years. I finally had enough on spending money on cats and having them become dinner and answered a ad for a "found cat". Yeah, he knew how to avoid coyotes. Unfortunately, he didn't know how to kill mice or rats. Sometimes, when he was bored he would catch a bird in the middle of the night and release it in our bedroom at 3:00 am. Then he decided to live 18 years AFTER I rescued him!!! Cats are cats and dogs are dogs. Take the good from each and ignore the rest.
  9. A couple of years ago I had the MLB app. You had to cast the broadcast to the TV. I used ChromeCast, but it did have issues. She should call MLB tech support. You can put the app on three devices. She could put it on a laptop, if the MLB app, allows it.
  10. My parents never had a credit record. They paid cash for everything!!! On the other hand, I have ALWAYS paid my credit card balance in full every month and have a sterling credit rating. Once, I noticed a finance charge on my credit card balance and immediately called the bank. It turns out that I transposed a couple of digits on the check and paid the bank $40 less than the full balance of $800. The finance charge was over $100 on carrying a $40 balance!!! In fairness, the bank reversed that charge given my payment history. Pay your credit cards off in full EVERY month. Otherwise, it is a short path to financial ruin. I would find a credit union to work with. Be honest with them, BTW the smaller the credit union the easier it would be for you to work with them. I have been with the same credit union for 43 years and have NEVER lived within 40 miles of the credit union. I have stepped into the building TWICE in 43 years. A few years ago I needed a 30,000 bridge loan for ONE MONTH. Called a couple of places and then called my credit union to see if they could offer anything. Inside of an hour, had the loan. Paid it off the following month with interest charges of $50. No fees. Oh, didn't have to show up for the loan either!! Good luck, but credit unions are the way to go.......banks are just too weird to do business with on a continuing basis.
  11. The best budget laptop is a refurbished one. I have lots of hobbies that require laptops and lots of storage. So I have a astronomy laptop, a photography laptop, a fire laptop and a use everyday internet laptop. They are ALL Lenovo's machines of the same vintage and model number. I bought some spare batteries that I can use in all four laptops. For the four machines I paid less than $900. All machines with the pro version of Windows. I don't think buying a NEW machine makes any sense these days. My 15 year IMAX has finally died last week.
  12. Those were not bears...those were grizzles. I had a fellow employee talk about the Beartooth's. I made my bucket list after the conversation. His stories about working in the Beartooth's and the BIG BEARS made me real paranoid. But his most scary story was running into a MOOSE in a willow patch in that area. Moose are mean.
  13. It isn't about carrying a card.....well, it is. We don't want to got down that slippery slope of....the government approves of this, so you get special "rights" compared to the "other citizens". My obligation is to help and protect my fellow citizens.....actually I only swore to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, BUT I take a broad view of that citizenship oath. I have no problem with the vaccine. I took it ASAP. I just don't think that should give me "special rights and privlages" compared to the un-vaccinated folks. We are ALL Americans. Even those of us born outside the country. So yes, I will wait for the pandemic to end. Even for those folks that do not want a jab in their arm. BTW...my favorite quote..."I don't need to show you my stinking badges".
  14. Fine, I have the card for OTHER countries....why do I need a "passport" for the US?? Full disclosure....The Soviet Union had "internal" passport" restricting citizens from traveling and engaging in activities not authorized by "their" passport. Do you really want to follow in the footsteps of the Soviet Union?? Do you know how hard my parents worked at escaping from that??
  15. I don't get the NEED for a card. I have been vaccinated and so have been most of my friends. Did it change my behavior?? NO. I still wear a mask when entering stores and libraries. What does it matter?? Oh wait, when I go fishing with a vaccinated friend, we do without masks in the truck!! I don't get the requirement for a "vaccinated passport". What difference does it make?? You still need to wear a mask to protect other people!!
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