On Hiatus

I’m off to the beach for a few days to indulge in sloth, lust, and gluttony.

I’ll be back sometime after labor day.

3 Years!

As of 8:05AM today, I haven’t smoked a cigarette (or anything else, thankyouverymuch) in 3 years.

Bourgeois Way

About a year ago, some evil arseholes built a fancy-pants housing development high atop the east end of Blue Mountain. This made it necessary to re-route the Darlington trail. Now, you can’t (legally) walk to the end of the mountain to take in the view of river.

Evil Bastards

The very existence of this development makes me want to puke, but there it is, painfully visible for miles around, and so it needed to be mapped.

I took my GPS and puttered around the voluminous million-dollar assemblages of plywood and plastics that replaced the trees.

Then, I came to a gate! The upper reaches of this development are, evidently, off-limits to amateur cartographers. There was no street sign to reveal the name of the street beyond the gate.

I thought about my options… I could:

  1. Not map it at all. It’s not accessible anyhow.
  2. Jump the gate and map it
  3. Map it from aerial imagery, and leave it unnamed.
  4. Map it from aerial imagery, and make up my own snarky name for it.

My Own Snarky Name for it.

I think I made the correct choice.

Boring Post

Just got in from a nice night ride. I adjusted the angle of my headlight a little, and it put much more usable light on the road now.

Tonight: 14 miles
August: 46 miles
2007: 798 miles

How to Download GPX Tracks under Linux

Somebody asked me how to do this a few days ago, and since google is not much help, here is how to download GPX track files from a GPS (Garmin eTrex in my case) over a Serial port (/dev/ttyS0 in my case), under Linux (Ubuntu Feisty in my case).

  1. Install the GPS Babel Program thusly:
  2. sudo apt-get install gpsbabel
  3. Plug the GPS into your first serial port.
  4. Turn on the GPS and make sure you have a saved track file in it.
  5. Run the following from a terminal
  6. gpsbabel -tw -i garmin -f /dev/ttyS0 -o gpx -F "test.gpx"
  7. You should now see your nice GPX file sitting in the directory from which you ran the command.
  8. Congratulations, You are now cool.


Over the past few weekends, I have gathered enough data to build a map of the CVRT, all the roads that intersect it, and the parking facilities at the trail heads.

The geeky, behind-the-scenes parts are still a bit experimental, so please forgive minor technical glitches. There is a larger version available for those who like things big.

Mapping in the Dark

I waited for the sun to go down before riding today, mainly because I wanted to play with my new generator-headlight setup.

I also picked up a handful of streets for the map. Mechanicsburg borough is really close to being done.

I like the headlight, but it kind of prods at you not to dilly-dally. If you fart around below 9mph or so, the light gets pretty dim.

Tonight: 16 miles
August: 32 miles
2007: 784 miles