Tag Archives: skiing

Coros Vertix, $599, With NO Built-In Maps, Is A Joke & No Competition, Whatsoever, Even To A Garmin 5!

by Anura Guruge



I have a bit of spare time on my hand — for a RARE (bloody) treat. So, I am gainfully using it to see what is new on the smartwatch front.

I started by looking at Coros — which is trying hard to be a Garmin competitor.

I looked at their latest — the $599 Vertix.

I was struck fairly early on that its working temp. does not go below -20°C (-4°F). That is NOT good. In my youth I used to ski in -20°F up here in New Hampshire. -4°F is not uncommon in a normal February in New Hampshire. So, that had my antenna up.

They make a BIG DEAL about breadcrumb navigation. So, I looked into that. Then I discovered that breadcrumb trails have to be MANUALLY loaded in. Did more digging. NO MAPS.

Ah?

No built-in topo maps? Ah?

I didn’t believe my eyes.

So, I joined the Facebook Coros group and asked. Yes, I was right.

No maps.

No THANK YOU. I am not going to bother looking at Coros anymore. What a JOKE.

$599. Hilarious. What clowns.


Related Posts:
Search ‘Garmin’.


by Anura Guruge

Skiing Today At “Gunstock Mountain Resort”, Gilford, N.H. — Some Of The Trails Quite Mushy.

by Anura Guruge


Click pictures to ENLARGE.







The kids wanted to go skiing at Gunstock, on Sunday, January 29, 2017. Devanee wanted to meet up and ski with some friends, and Teischan, having just finished her 4-weeks ski-program at school, was eager to get more milage on the snow. Since Teischan (at 10) is too young to venture beyond the bunny slope on her own I agreed to go skiing.

This was a tad too early in the year for I. In my dotage I really have become a warm-weather skier. Days of skiing in -20°F (-28°C), in ‘Waterville Valley’ (N.H.), are long gone and but a shuddering memory. [That was c. 1995 — over two decades ago.]

I lucked out. The morning, till exactly noon, was spectacular in terms of weather. Blue skies, sun beating down and quite warm (probably because I was wearing 3-layers (for a change)). It wasn’t that busy either. Sure there was plenty of people but the lift lines were never more than a FEW minutes long — less than 4 minutes ( I would venture).

So, it was good.

Gunstock is UNPARALLELED for its spectacular views across Lake Winnipesaukee. Beautiful place to ski.

That said Gunstock has never been my #1 place to ski in New Hampshire. I am an out-and-out Loon man. Loon is my mountain and has been for 31 years.

I remembered today, my very first visit to to Gunstock in 1987. We were on the way to Loon, on I-93, when just prior to the Gilford exit we heard a very compelling radio ad. for Gunstock. So, we decided to pull off at Gilford and give Gunstock a try. Drove up, pulled in the parking lot, got out … and took one look up. I then immediately got back, said “it is way too small” and set off to Loon!

Then I came to live in Gilford, 1998 to 2007. I could see the slopes of Gunstock from my bed! So, I started skiing Gunstock — on occasion.

The kids like Gunstock. Their school ski program is at Gunstock.

So, why we ended up in Gunstock today. Plus, through the school program we get discount tickets. That was GOOD. If I had paid full price I would not have been happy.

Yes, we have had above freezing temps for the last few days. BUT, that is no excuse for the MUSHY trails — especially the blue ones. Given Teischan is still new to the sport we have to ski Blue. I was not impressed. Neither was Devanee.

But a good ‘day’ of skiing — Teischan and I calling it quits at 2pm (given we only took a 15 minute lunch break).

I know that the trails at Loon would have been better groomed. Real piste. Not the mush we encountered at Gunstock. 


Related posts:
++++ Search ‘skiing‘ for other posts >>>>


by Anura Guruge


“Gypsy Cafe”, Lincoln (Loon), N.H. — A Culinary & Visual Paradise Extraordinaire.

by Anura Guruge



Click here
to access their nicely done Website.


Click pictures to ENLARGE.

Attribution WILL be enforced.







The artwork, decor and artifacts were so
appealing and compelling that I took 120 pictures
(with my Panasonic Lumix LX100).

Too many to display.
So I made a YouTube photo montage.

Definitely worth watching. Trust me on this (too).

gypsycafeyt1

Click to access YouTube video.


From now on forget going to Lincoln, New Hampshire (‘Loon‘ as many of us think of it (because of the mountain)) for its skiing, fall foliage, the ‘Highland Games‘, the ice castle, the train or just the ambience — though all of these are extremely good reasons for going there. Henceforth just think of going to Lincoln just so that you can have an extraordinary meal at the “Gypsy Café“.

WOW! WOW! WOW!

What a place. Total sensory overload. Never ending treat for the eyes with unusual, but captivating art and food to die for. WOW!

I am easy to please when it comes to food and most art appeals to me. But I do know when I am in the presence of GREATNESS and am blessed with being able to appreciate it. And that was truly the case when we stumbled upon the “Gypsy Café” on Thursday after our day of (very fine) skiing at Loon. It was sheer serendipity.

When we left Loon around 3:30pm I was looking for a place to a hot lunch and glass of red wine. I wanted to go to the Lincoln Inn (one of my favorites) while Deanna and the kids wanted to go to the “Common Man” (since we had such a blast there in September when we went there with “The Brigadoons“). Drove to the “Common” since it was right there. Kitchen closed till 4pm. I wasn’t in the mood to hang around for 20 minutes — not even for Alex Ray. So I crawled along Main Street seeing what else was around. That is how we found it. Deanna had heard of it. I liked the name, the sign and the colors. As soon as we walked in we knew that we were going to have a blast. And we did.

It was the type of art and colors that we like. In some ways it reminded us of home! We too have a lot of suns, moons, elephants and color.

Deanna took one look at the menu and told me what I will be having. She was right. And it was OUTSTANDING. I am a sucker for lamb. Spicy lamb with two fried eggs on top. WOW! WOW! WOW! It was beyond delicious.

Sure it is NOT for everyone. IF you are strictly an Irish meat and potatoes person you might not like it. We, though Teischan was not as thrilled, liked everything we had. These 4 dishes — I can’t recommend any higher.


gypsycafelamb

gypsycafeapps

Click to ENLARGE.


The young lady who served us, with aplomb, had a degree in Sociology & Anthropology! High class joint to boot. I lucked out. I got to meet the two delightful owners, mother & son. Claire & Dan Duris. Dan is the chief chef and one of the resident artists — specializing in the ceramics and tiles.

What a place. We are going back.

Highest possible recommendation.



Related posts:
++++ Search ‘Loon‘ for many other posts including those for the ‘Highland Games‘ >>>>


by Anura Guruge


“Gypsy Cafe”, Lincoln (Loon), N.H. — A Culinary & Visual Paradise Extraordinaire.

by Anura Guruge



Click here
to access their nicely done Website.


Click pictures to ENLARGE.

Attribution WILL be enforced.







The artwork, decor and artifacts were so
appealing and compelling that I took 120 pictures
(with my Panasonic Lumix LX100).

Too many to display.
So I made a YouTube photo montage.

Definitely worth watching. Trust me on this (too).

gypsycafeyt1

Click to access YouTube video.


From now on forget going to Lincoln, New Hampshire (‘Loon‘ as many of us think of it (because of the mountain)) for its skiing, fall foliage, the ‘Highland Games‘, the ice castle, the train or just the ambience — though all of these are extremely good reasons for going there. Henceforth just think of going to Lincoln just so that you can have an extraordinary meal at the “Gypsy Café“.

WOW! WOW! WOW!

What a place. Total sensory overload. Never ending treat for the eyes with unusual, but captivating art and food to die for. WOW!

I am easy to please when it comes to food and most art appeals to I. But I do know when I am in the presence of GREATNESS and am blessed with being able to appreciate it. And that was truly the case when we stumbled upon the “Gypsy Café” on Thursday after our day of (very fine) skiing at Loon. It was sheer serendipity.

When we left Loon around 3:30pm I was looking for a place to a hot lunch and glass of red wine. I wanted to go to the Lincoln Inn (one of my favorites) while Deanna and the kids wanted to go to the “Common Man” (since we had such a blast there in September when we went there with “The Brigadoons“). Drove to the “Common” since it was right there. Kitchen closed till 4pm. I wasn’t in the mood to hang around for 20 minutes — not even for Alex Ray. So I crawled along Main Street seeing what else was around. That is how we found it. Deanna had heard of it. I liked the name, the sign and the colors. As soon as we walked in we knew that we were going to have a blast. And we did.

It was the type of art and colors that we like. In some ways it reminded us of home! We too have a lot of suns, moons, elephants and color.

Deanna took one look at the menu and told me what I will be having. She was right. And it was OUTSTANDING. I am a sucker for lamb. Spicy lamb with two fried eggs on top. WOW! WOW! WOW! It was beyond delicious.

Sure it is NOT for everyone. IF you are strictly an Irish meat and potatoes person you might not like it. We, though Teischan was not as thrilled, liked everything we had. These 4 dishes — I can’t recommend any higher.


gypsycafelamb

gypsycafeapps

Click to ENLARGE.


The young lady who served us, with aplomb, had a degree in Sociology & Anthropology! High class joint to boot. I lucked out. I got to meet the two delightful owners, mother & son. Claire & Dan Duris. Dan is the chief chef and one of the resident artists — specializing in the ceramics and tiles.

What a place. We are going back.

Highest possible recommendation.



Related posts:
++++ Search ‘Loon‘ for many other posts including those for the ‘Highland Games‘ >>>>


by Anura Guruge


The Honesty Of New Englanders Tend To Be Astounding.

by Anura Guruge


axspro11I got the kids a GoPro-like action camera kit, an ‘ASX ActionPro-X‘, as a ‘family present’ for Christmas. Though it was received with excitement it stayed unused — partly because we have so many other cameras around.

Yesterday we went skiing at Loon. Devanee wanted to take the ‘GoPro’, I was fine with that provided she used it. She was going to use it with the head-strap.

Once we were there it fell on me to wear it. I did not use the waterproof case. Just snapped it onto the ‘cradle’ and screwed that onto the head-harness. We did one run with the camera. At the bottom I look it off and looked around to see if Deanna was around so that I could give her the camera to keep. Deanna was not skiing. She wasn’t around so I decided to do another run with the camera. Same routine. Got down to the bottom and went to take the camera off to give it to Deanna.

Camera was missing!

Harness still on my head but no camera or cradle. It had come unscrewed. I immediately retraced my steps. Went on the lift and skied back the trail. No signs of the ASX. I was bit bummed but was not devastated. It was an action camera. Teischan, to her credit, went on her own and checked, unsuccessfully.

About an hour later, on a whim, I asked the ski lift operator if somebody had handed in a ‘GoPro’.

To my amazement and delight she said “Yes, but it is not a GoPro”. I told her it was an ‘AXS’ (which was close enough).

WOW. I was impressed and humbled. It was a fully functional action camera. Somebody could have just pocketed it.

WOW.

Second time that somebody in New Hampshire has handed in a camera that I misplaced. The last time was 15 years ago, at UNH in Durham, at a ‘Destination Imagination‘ workshop. There were around 00 people there. The camera was a Nikon DSLR worth around $500. Somebody handed it in. I was amazed BUT had believed, in the back of my mind, that somebody would hand it in. I was right.

Yes, we have lost at least 3 other digital compact cameras in the interim. But we are not sure where we lost them. Somebody could have handed in those too BUT we are not sure where to go asking.

But the ‘GoPro’ at Loon was HUMBLING.

New Englanders. 


by Anura Guruge

Skiing At Loon Mountain, New Hampshire On February 25, 2016.

by Anura Guruge


Pictures and videos taken by Deanna
with her Olympus Stylus SZ-16.
Images reduced to 1024 x 768
for publication here.

Click pictures to ENLARGE.





24 second YouTube video.

loonfeb2016YT1

Click to access YouTube video.


Thanks to their participation in the school ski program both kids are big into skiing. Every year they nag me to take them skiing. In my old age, given that I am a 62-year old born in equatorial Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), I am at best a (very) warm-weather skier. Yes, it is true that I used to be a rabid, manic skier who was even known to ski one day, at Waterville Valley, when the temperature was BELOW 0°F (and at that point it doesn’t matter whether you are talking Celsius or Fahrenheit). Plus now I have a mortal fear that I would break something important. 40 years ago I broke all my knuckles on ski poles — but I don’t care about knuckles. Breaking my leg would be inconvenient.

I had not skied the last two years. Teischan did her 1st school ski program this year and was very anxious for a ‘family ski’. So I relented — provided it was warm.

So yesterday, Thursday, February 25, 2016, in the midst of the February 1-week school vacation, we headed up to Loon. I have been skiing at Loon since 1986 — 30 years. I used to ski a LOT at Loon. Devanee likes Loon (as opposed to Gunstock) too — though this was Teischan’s first time skiing at Loon, though she is no stranger to Loon because of our annual visits to the ‘Highland Games‘. Yes, we knew the weather forecast. It was going to be warm and then RAIN late afternoon. Half a day skiing is fine with me and this was ‘OK’.

We got to Loon at 10:20 am. It was foggy (from the melting snow) and gray. I thought something MAJORLY had gone wrong. Loon was EMPTY. The main car park, between the two lodges, had, max., 40 cars! It was empty. And that was the theme for the day. EMPTY.

At noon the clouds and fog dissipated and for two hours we got to ski under bright blue skies. It was so warm I had to take my gloves off. Conditions were NOT bad. Yes, there were some slushy patches but they were easy to see and avoid. It wasn’t hard to ski. I skied mainly with the kids. I think I only did 3 runs on my own. That was OK. Skied quite a bit with Teischan. It started to rain just before 3pm. Teischan and I skied a bit in the rain (which was frozen in the main). Arond 3:15pm we gave up. But we had got a fair amount of skiing since there were NO lines, whatsoever. No lines. Amazing. I love that. Nothing nicer than skiing right upto the gate and getting on. I think there were less than 100 people skiing on the mountain all together! Wow. And it was school vacation. I gather it had been quiet the day before also.

Loon continues to impress BAR for the prices. Cost us $215 for what was 1/2 days skiing — I rented skis (HEAD (which were great) and Teischan got boots and skis. Teischan’s lift ticket was only $10 since we had a coupon from the school ski program. If not for that it would have been another $30 – $40 more. Rentals, fully automated, is a snap. Good equipment. Liked the HEAD skis. No effort required. They turn when you think about turning!

It was a GOOD day followed by an AMAZING late lunch at the INCREDIBLEGypsy Café‘ — a separate post on that coming later today (with luck).


Related posts:
++++ Search ‘Loon‘ for many other posts including those for the ‘Highland Games‘ >>>>


by Anura Guruge