Saturday, February 12, 2011

Silly Mountain, Weaver’s Needle and a Funny Friend…

On Thursday morning I wrote my rant about the sorry state of the music scene in the RV parks, generally, while Janice walked and took care of some emails.

About 11:00 we thought we’d get in a quick hike before lunch and then drive to Mesa to check the lay of the land. Having seen a sign for the Peralta Trailhead on the way back from the loop drive we took the other day, we headed for there. It turned out the trail turnoff was a little further down the highway then we had remembered and then the trailhead itself was seven miles up a dirt road.

Our feet never hit the trail until about 12:15, but right from the beginning the rock formations were astounding, and got more interesting with just about every step. We climbed gradually, around massive boulders that obviously come from the surrounding cliffs, and were an hour into the hike when we decided we were getting hungry. Another couple was coming down the trail at that point and we asked how much farther the trail went. They said, “Oh, about fifty miles.” They also explained that there was an awesome view of the Weaver’s Needle another hour or so up the trail. With only a mouthful of water left in the bottle we turned back down the trail.

Pictured below are some shots from the way up the Peralta Trail.

After lunch we drove to Mesa, which is like driving to Burnaby from east Vancouver - cross a road and you’re there. We didn’t find much to see in Mesa but we did stop in at the tourist bureau and got a map of local hikes. Looking it over, we discovered that a number of trails culminate with spectacular views of Weaver’s Needle.

The weather has been sunny but brisk since we got here, but today, Friday, it started to warm significantly. We went for a short but fairly steep hike at Silly Mountain, pictured below.

After lunch we went for a dip in the pool and hung around there reading our books while doing laundry.

Following my tirade about the old folks music at the last jam session, my friend, who else? Bill Lyle, responded by email. I print it here without his permission, only slightly edited. this being man-to-man talk I've deleted the first expletive for Rhelda, Lois, and anybody else who might have sensitive ears, so that you can fill in the blanks with something more dainty.


What the _ _ _ _ is wrong with you? Ever since you stopped chronicling the price of crab cakes and red onions around the four corners of America you have gotten steadily bitchyer. Lets take a minute and review the situation. You are a guest in the country. You're burning up fossil fuels like there is no tomorrow, traipsing around the US of A. Never a thought of my poor little grandhild Hanna's future. According to your blogs you have consumed enough food to supply a third world country, you have little or no regard for the laws of the land. Now you take a shot at America the beautiful.

When Korea started acting up didn't they go and kick some ass? Ditto Vietnam. When they found oil in the Middle East didn't they step up and insure your right to drive a gas guzzler? Are they not in Iraq trying to make the world a better place to drive in? Incidentally, it's my opinion that the true American genius in the automotive industry was Fred Flintstone. May he rest in peace.

I long ago predicted dire consequenses resulting from your prolonged stay in the trailer parks of America. I can only imagine what Janice is like. She has probably gone back to settling her problems by fighting. It might be time to come home Tim. As a rookie musican I am wondering if my melodic plunking of Eagles and John Fogerty songs are going to find a place in you music utopia. Too much exposure to trailer parks could leave you a bitter plus-60 sitting on a box. Get back up here and find a nice 9 to 5 gig, eat some fried foods and get your life back on track.

Through it all though, your pictures have been nice.

I hope you're not grumbling around the park kicking beer cans and yelling at kids Tim. Oh yeah, thats right, no kids allowed in the park.

I was in the hospital this morning and knocked out. Minor procedure and nothing to worry about...and my boobs are really perky now. Barb brought me home and I staggered up the back stairs under the glare of the neighbor a few doors down. My rep is going to take another hit.

God Bless America,



A more reasonable response came from Gary Neilsen, a singer/songwriter I play with in Kamloops...

. . . your "rant" on the jam at the RV park made me laugh out loud when I read it and still has me grinning from ear to ear. Yeah, I know what you mean and totally agree . . . I'm 65 but not about ready to rest on my musical laurels and live in the past. Remember though Tim, you are in the U.S. of A. where old folks can get pretty sappy . . . glad I wasn't there for America the Beautiful . . . wouldn't have know whether to laugh or throw up.

BTW, had a similar experience in Salt Lake City a few years back when my brother-in-law and I were at a Utah Jazz basketball game . . . before the game they brought up a guy who was headed off to Iraq, gave him a standing "O" and proceeded to sing the the Star Spangled Banner, hands over hearts and gazing up at a big American flag . . . totally surreal. I'm so glad I live in Canada.


Ok Bill, let me try once more to prove my point about these old RV people. Then I'll let it rest...

There was a free concert scheduled for 4:15 yesterday afternoon - Bobby Brooks Hamilton, son of the legendary Jackie Wilson, who was doing a tribute show to R&B greats Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Nat King Cole, Sam Cooke, and others. It turned out to be a teaser concert for his $20 show at a partner RV park next week. Understood.

So, Bobby Brooks Hamilton walks in, the spitting image of his dad, with the tall pompadour hair style, a royal blue suit with stove-pipe pants, highly polished boots and a yellow shirt with yellow and white striped tie - very slick. By the way, Michael Jackson readily and openly admitted that the two biggest influences on his dance moves were: James Brown and Jackie Wilson. In a documentary we saw soon after Michael’s death they overlaid some of his moves on Jackie Wilson’s, leaving no doubt where they had come from.

There was seating for three hundred people, but only twenty or thirty people filed in and took seats at the back, fifty feet or so from the stage. Bobby undoubtedly had to be disappointed in the turn out, but worse, as he attempted to warm to the crowd with his intro, he asked if anybody was familiar with Jackie Wilson. Janice, me and two other people held up their hands. Oh-oh.

As the people stared back with blank expressions, he explained he sometimes plays Vegas and has played the Apollo Theatre, among other places. He then gave a very brief history of his dad before launching into Lonely Teardrops. Ah ha! Some slight recognition and a smattering of applause. He was doing a great job, especially considering he was singing to about four-and-a-half decibels of back-up music on his I-pod. It was hooked up to the P.A. but I guess he didn’t want to turn it any louder for fear he might scare the few of us that were there, away.

Next he asked if anybody had heard of Sam Cooke. Janice and mine were the only hands that went up! Janice reminded me later that not everybody remembers the artist’s names kike I do. Okay, I know I’m an old R&B fan - I can understand that people might not be familiar with Jackie Wilson, but come on - Sam Cooke?! Bobby was starting to look around slightly aghast at this point, but bravely started crooning You Send Me. Another smattering of applause as faces registered that, indeed, they were familiar with the song.

We had met his promoter, and probably his wife, outside before the show. I had mentioned what a great showman and dancer Jackie Wilson had been and asked if there was much film of him. She replied that, “Yes, there is quite a bit of film and there will be a movie released soon abut him.” Adding, “Wait until you see Bobby dance.” Of course Bobby never did dance at all because he got such a weak and cool response. Too bad.

Clearly getting a little exasperated, he asked if anybody had heard of Elvis Presley. When most faces lit up and people applauded a little he broke into an obscure old Gospel song of Elvis’ that nobody knew. He absolutely killed it, belting it out and showing just what kind of pipes he really possessed. It was beautiful. Perfect. He quickly thanked everybody for coming and shut it down.


Janice and I had decided to attend the $3 pancakes, eggs sausages and coffee breakfast at the clubhouse in the morning, in order to carb up for our hike up the Peralta Trail.

No sooner had we sat down at the breakfast then one of the geezers that had been at The Show the previous afternoon asked his buddy if he’d been there. His buddy said, “Ya, what’d you think?” The first geezer held his hands over his ears and shook his head.

See, it’s not just me, Bill.

I know it’s all a matter of taste but, those people just don’t have any. You see, it’s my blog and I get to have the last word on this matter! But, yes John Fogerty and The Eagles will do just fine…


We were told by our neighbour that it was going to be a three-hour hike up to The Saddle on the Peralta Trail. Some Park Rangers standing at the bottom disagreed. They said, “You guys look like you’re in pretty good shape. It shouldn’t take you more than an hour-and-a-half.“ We signed in at the trail head at 9:45 and were standing, looking at Weaver’s Needle at 10:45. It was only two-and-a-half miles up but the elevation gain was 4,100 feet. We had already stopped to take pictures and look around more on our first trip the other day, that took us two-thirds of the way up. I must admit I was pretty red-faced by the time we got to the top. It was great though. We sat and ate some fruit before hiking The Saddle to get a closer look at the Needle.

The pictures below show Weaver’s Needle and then views south as we descended the trail.


  1. I wonder if you noticed I did not reply to your musical "rant?" I couldn't, but let me just say I am so happy to have been kissed by Frank Sinatra! True, true. Your pictures are wonderful and I'm envious of your hiking abilities...but then I'm older and still enjoy the big bands.
    hugs and smiles, cuz ljc

  2. Thank goodness for the Pictures!!!, .... not all of us like music that you can't hear of figure out the words. Good comments Bill. I'm afraid to go to the concert in an RV park we have been invited to in March.

    Do you take food on your hikes now?
    Janice you look like you have lost weight.

    XOXO Mom/Rhelda