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8th Annual RUN FOR IKE 5K

March 31st, 2018
    This morning, Saturday March 31st, Tessa and I limited our regular morning walk to 3.5 miles. The reason was to allow time for us to participate in the 8th Annual RUN FOR IKE 5K event starting at 8am. It’s a fundraiser for the PSPD (Palm Springs Police Department) K-9 unit. She and I were registered as #397.

    We were among the 600+ runners, joggers, walkers, baby buggies and dogs that participated in the 5k (about 3.1 miles) event. Afterwards the local Lions Club provided free pancake breakfasts together with sausage, orange juice, apple juice and water. When we reached the finish line I received a RUN FOR IKE 5k Finisher medal and Tessa received a bag of doggy treats. While eating my pancake breakfast (sadly, no coffee) Tessa sampled the treats.

    Afterwards we spent time taking photos. Tessa posed for photos with CHP Officer “Chipper”, PSPD Chief Brian Reyes, sitting before the Starting Line, the Finish Line and the 3 Mile Marker.

    The event started on the Police Department headquarters grounds populated by a number of information booths. In addition to three PSPD booths (Meet the Chief, COPS-Citizens on Patrol, Search & Rescue, SWAT display) there were booths setup by Friends of the Palm Springs Animal Shelter, California Highway Patrol, Desert Water Agency, PET Companion magazine and others.

    We were finished and back home before 10am. According to my Fitbit wristband it credited us with 16,634 steps and 8.25 miles for the combined morning walk and K-9 run/walk event. Tessa, of course, walked more than 16,634 steps.

Bond Shands
March 31, 2018
My Notebook blog – www.BondShands.com
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Palm Springs Breaking Dawn Views

March 22nd, 2018

This morning when Tessa and I started our walk there with dark clouds overhead with a stray bolt of lightning and sprinkles of rain. Within a quarter hour the rain sprinkles had stopped and the clouds started thinning. We entered the Tahquitz Creek Golf Resort grounds just as dawn began to break. We saw light in the east that appeared almost fire like. The light show lasted for less than a quarter hour but it was quite spectacular. In the west we saw a half rainbow on the southeast side of Mount San Jacinto. Later we encountered the resident road runner bird and he allowed us to take a number of photos. Near the end of our walk Tessa and I posed for selfies.

Bond Shands
March 22, 2018
My Notebook blog – www.BondShands.com
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Desert Political Opinion blog – www.Facebook.com/DesertObserver
Twitter – @BondShands

Santa Paws 5k Report

December 16th, 2017

 The Sixth Annual Santa Paws 5k Run/Walk/Stroll/Crawl

The annual Santa Paws 5k event, sponsored by our local Lions Club, benefits Guide Dogs of the Desert. Registered contestants are provided with Santa Claus suits (jacket, pants, cap, beard, black belt and a white t-shirt), lots of upcoming race literature and a little candy cane. The route started at 9 am in the Temple Isaiah parking lot, and proceeded to follow a winding route north to Stevens (a block short of Vista Chino) where there’s an official mid-route water stop, before returning to the Finish Line at the starting point. There’s a separate event later in the morning for small kids on the nearby O’Donnell golf course.

I wore my Santa suit and was accompanied by Tessa who walked and jogged the route au natural. Most of those doing the event wore all or part of their Santa costume and many doggies wore Santa apparel. Men, women and children contestants included marathon runners, other runners, joggers, baby strollers, and lots of well-behaved doggies on leash. I don’t run or jog so Tessa had to pull me for much of the route, for her pace was quite a bit faster than my own.

We started the day at 6 am with our usual 4 mile walk. Managed a nice photo of the sky as dawn was breaking in the east. Clouds were noticeable but appeared to be clearing in the west. Later, around 8:30 am while seeking a parking spot, a few rain drop sprinkles hit the car, but it lasted less than 10 minutes. The significant cloud cover made the morning appear rather gloomy. That, however, made the 55 degree air temperature excellent for running and other physical activities. Like several others, I was dressed almost too warmly, but cooled off on the downhill section. As for rain, we didn’t encounter and during or after the event.

Since the event is an official timed race, RaceWire recorded all the finisher times. They captured the embarrassing finishing numbers for Tessa (and me). Overall we were 361 out of 489 finishers, 189 out of 229 male finishers, and 6th out of 6 in our age group. If I had followed Tessa’s urging to pick up the pace, we would have done better.

Photos of the race/walk also include the one from the early dawn morning walk.

This was our third annual Santa Paws 5k event and we plan on another repeat next year.

Bond & Tessa

Bond Shands
December 15, 2017
My Notebook blog – www.BondShands.com
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Bonita Ranch Weekend Motorhome Outing

September 28th, 2017

          At least five doggy companions together with nearly two dozen GOPS members (including 7 mobile bedrooms) met for a weekend of camping at Bonita Ranch in San Bernardino county. The local GOPS club (Great Outdoors Palm Springs chapter) sponsored the three day-two night outing that occurred September 22-24. GOPS members, along with their RV motor homes or tents, regularly participate in these planned outings offering opportunities to visit different areas to hike, explore, and learn while enjoying time in an outdoor environment.

          Bonita Ranch is located along Lytle Creek west of Interstate 15’s Cajon Pass in the San Bernardino National Forest. The Bonita Ranch campground is a short, but somewhat energetic hike, from the spectacular Bonita Falls waterfall.  The campground is open year round and includes hook-up sites for motor homes and tent camping facilities (water/electricity/showers).

          Our Friday afternoon arrival schedule included setting up camp, a Tea Time meet and greet, and evening campfire activities. We were located in the vicinity of other groups, including a Christian Fellowship gathering, whose singing appeared to play a significant role in their daytime activities. All camping groups respected each other and mostly observed the 10 pm to 8 am quiet time. 

          Saturday’s schedule started with morning coffee and pastries, followed by a round trip hike up a dry creek bed to Bonita Falls. The view of the Falls was quite lovely but with one rather noteworthy exception. The entire trail along the creek bed and the climb up under the trees was plastered with graffiti of all colors, designs and shapes. It seemed like almost every large rock had been defaced with graffiti. When we reached the Falls that area too had been trashed with graffiti. It was a somewhat saddening experience that leaves you wondering why do some care so little for nature’s beautiful offerings? The hiking route and Falls may be viewed at http://www.world-of-waterfalls.com/california-bonita-falls.html

          Saturday afternoon a smaller group caravanned to the Mormon Rocks Interpretive Trail in the Cucamonga Wilderness, 1 mile west of Interstate 15. The trail is a short loop that offers scenic views of the unique sandstone rocks in which it is located. The trail area and rocks may be viewed at http://digital-desert.com/mormon-rocks/.

          Continuing our Saturday afternoon caravan we drove the Angeles Crest Hwy (State Route 2) up to 7,000+ ft elevation Table Mountain to view the area planned for October GOPS camping activities. Resuming our caravan loop we took the Lone Pine Canyon Road (a 10% downhill grade) back to State Route 138 and return to the Lytle Creek area.

          Saturday evening’s events started with members grilling their entrees over a large Barbecue Pit and sharing potluck side dishes. Afterwards, another evening of campfire activities occurred.

          Sunday morning was set aside for individual member activities. Again coffee and pastries were waiting for early risers. Campground reservations were set to expire with a noon check-out time so most devoted their morning time to breaking camp and returning home. My little doggy, Tessa, accompanied me on the trip and appeared to enjoy the weekend immensely. She received lots of attention and did her best to meet and greet everyone. She didn’t notice the rather large black Tarantula that passed through our camp. I did manage a photo of it but made no attempt at contact before Mr or Ms Tarantula continued on its way.

          Scott Connelly, the outing leader, planned the event, designed the schedule, and led both the hikes and caravan trips. It was a well-organized activity and our GOPS chapter is fortunate in having him as our Vice President of Outings. For more about GOPS visit https://greatoutdoorspalmsprings.wildapricot.org/.

Bond & Contessa Le Rouge (aka Tessa)

Bond Shands
September 26, 2017
My Notebook blog – www.BondShands.com
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Silent Valley Club – The Sunday Dog Show

September 3rd, 2017

       Labor Day weekend festivities in the Silent Valley Club resort included a judged dog show for mostly untitled canines. Her ladyship, The Contessa Le Rouge, lent an air of nobility to the proceedings by agreeing to participate as a contestant.

       Three lady judges, plus a moderator, had selected seven categories to be judged. Contestants were permitted to choose and enter two of the categories. Each contestant received a raffle ticket along with a “Participant” ribbon.

       The judging category list included:
…..Happy Tail Wagging
…..Smallest dog
…..Best Trick
…..Largest dog
…..Couch Potato
…..Most Obedient

       There were no categories recognizing beauty, intelligence, beauty, vocal skills, beauty, agility, beauty, distance walking, beauty, charm, beauty, friendliness, beauty, noble lineage, beauty, pedigree, or beauty. Lacking a category that fit her many fine attributes, Tessa entered the Happy Tail Wagging and Most Obedient categories. She is presumed to have been an undeclared runner-up in her categories for others walked away with First Place honors.

       When the winning raffle ticket was drawn it turned out to be the one issued to Tessa. Her prize was a bag filled with dog treats, two plastic water bowls, waste bags and a food container. So, Tessa was pleased for she came away from the contest a definite winner.

Bond Shands
September 3, 2017
My Notebook blog – www.BondShands.com
Personal Facebook page – www.Facebook.com/Bond.Shands
Desert Political Opinion blog – www.Facebook.com/DesertObserver
Twitter – @BondShands