I’ve been taking a lot of sunset photos lately. It’s hard to resist in a place like New Mexico where every night takes your breath away in a completely new way.
Visited the White Sands National Monument today. It’s amazing how a flat dirty desert instantly turns into towering white dunes of sand with no warning.
Enjoying my very own sunset with nobody around for miles.
Cooking some rice with a few sticks and twigs I found lying around. Rocket Stoves are the way to go!
I’m visiting southern New Mexico near the Carlsbad Caverns for a few days. First stop is along the Pecos River. I slept on top of my truck to avoid rattlesnakes and was greeted with this view upon waking.
I visited the Jemez Historic Site with a friend yesterday. These are the remains of a small Native American village from the early 1600s.
One of the things I’ve missed most in the 15 or so years since I was training to be a Zen Monk at the monastery in Jemez Springs is the tranquil Hot Springs available on site. So nice to return to its healing waters.
I just arrived back in Jemez Springs after over a decade. Once upon a time I trained to be a Zen Monk here at the monastery in the tiny town. Memories!
You may be asking yourself why in the world am I drinking 1500 calories of fat for breakfast. Well, there are several reasons:
The Organ Mountains of New Mexico a few hours before sunset. This is my latest campsite while touring the Southwest United States living in my truck.
The sun had risen about 30 minutes earlier, but it decided to hide behind a rock to do it all over again. I can understand, it was a glorious sunrise!
I climbed the mountains behind my campsite early this morning because they were blocking my view of the Blood Moon eclipse. Unfortunately there was always another mountain once at the top, but I was still treated to some magical lighting as the sun came.
First, it is a Blue Moon which means it’s the second Full Moon in the same month, a very rare occurrence. Second, the moon is at the closest it gets to Earth, meaning it looks bigger than usual. This is called a Super Moon. And third, right before the moon sets there will a Blood Moon which is an eclipse where the light from the sun passes through the Earth’s atmosphere filtering out the blue light leaving only red.
Quite the combination wouldn’t you say? I’m told we won’t experience this again in for decades.
I woke up after my first night at Saddle Mountain to this beautiful sunset. I’m really loving the deserts of Arizona!
This was taken my first night at Saddle Mountain in Arizona. It’s my favorite camping site while living in my truck so far! I was able to use Four Wheel Driver to get deeper into the wilderness than most.
I’m finding tons of mounds with large holes burrowed by an unknown animal in Las Cienegas in Southern Arizona. I’m guessing they are rabbits because I spooked one in the grass when I woke up this morning.
Most camping or boondocking locations tend to have a heavy concentration of RVs and Vans right near the entrance from the main road. This is because those vehicles have a difficult time on uneven roads and terrain. So even though there’s miles of land that you’re allowed to drive to, hardly anyone goes out there… unless they have a vehicle with power to all 4 wheels!
I’ve really been enjoying this advantage so far because it guarantees me some privacy and some peace and quiet. It’s also really fun to drive into the mountains on an old bumpy dirt road.
This small region of southern Arizona is covered in tall grass, and stands out in stark contrast to the cactus covered deserts which surround the area in all directions. I felt like I had suddenly driven into an entirely different part of the country.
I am parked out in the desert on BLM land and living in my truck. I decided to go on a little adventure into the mountains and bring you all along. I saw cacti, mysterious animal holes, crystalline rocks, and even discovered a cave in the mountain!
Sadly the 4G signal seems to have dropped out right when I reached the cave, so only I got to experience the glory… and it was truly glorious! I think someone could live in that cave if they wanted to.
Anyway, hope you enjoyed the first episode of The Wizard Live, and I’ll see you next time!
I’ve been doing this routine for several years now, and it’s primary goal is to create symmetrical awareness of the body to increase moment-to-moment comfort in the long term and improve physical and energetic performance for the rest of the day.
It’s been extremely helpful for me and I hope my sharing of it with you serves your life for the better.
I used to be freaked out by spiders when I was younger. I was forced to be exposed to one regularly for a long period of time and the fear just wore off eventually. I’m not sure it’s worn off so much that I’d want this thing crawling on me though…
There’s tons of BLM land out here owned by the government which you’re allowed to hang out on for 14 days at a time. Once that time is up you need to move to another location where you can stay for another 14 days, and you can just hop around like that forever!
I’ll be making more videos about the specifics of my living situation, but if you’d like to learn more about something or have questions, please let me know in the comment below.
I decided to try sealing with some old tree sap we have lying around, but that was too brittle once it cooled. Instead I used a Turpentine, Beeswax and Coconut Oil mixture, and it worked perfectly!
I settled on what is essentially Bubble Wrap surrounded on either side by Aluminum Foil: http://geni.us/EcoFoil
This stuff works primarily by reflecting any radiant heat that comes in contact with the aluminum. My makeshift propane stove heats up several firebricks which radiate heat into the yurt, and that heat is bounced around inside the yurt rather than leaking through the porous cotton fabric which was the only thing there before.
It was really easy to install along the walls by sliding pieces I cut between the cotton cloth exterior and the wooden supports inside. It feels like the Yurt was designed to make this as simple as it could possible be! I thought the ceiling was going to be a challenge due to the non-rectangular angles, but discovered that it worked perfectly if I cut a diagonal line down each rectangle of insulation.
So far it’s working out beautifully! I am easily able to get temperatures 30-40 degrees Fahrenheit higher than the temperature outside. I’ve been able to keep it in the 70s in here when the temperature outside is nearing freezing!
I’m really looking forward to the challenge of temperatures dropping another 20 degrees in the Winter. I’ll provide updates on how well the insulation is working once it’s starts getting really chilly.
This video walks you through the entire process, and explains some of the electrical concepts involved.
Watch as I give you a tour of the 12-foot diameter yurt, showing the sweet rug I found on Craistlist, how I use the back seats of my Toyota 4Runner as a makeshift couch, and much more!
After a lot of research I decided to go with a 12-foot diameter yurt made by the folks over at campingyurts.com because they’re lightweight and easy to put up and take down. I hope you enjoy watching the unboxing and my first attempt at putting a yurt together!
In this video I give you a quick tour of our power situation and how we’re making use of it.
Collecting Rain Water in a Mongolian GerWe’ve been living in a Mongolian Ger for a little while now and are loving this more minimalist lifestyle! Since there is no plumbing we do have to get creative about things like using the bathroom. In this post I’ll show you how we collect our drinking water using a metal roof and a cistern.
Outdoor Compost Toilet for the Mongolian GerLiving in a Mongolian Ger, also known as a Yurt, is an amazing way to exist. However, it does lack some of the amenities one usually finds in a house or apartment, like a bathroom! Come along for a tour of the outdoor compost toilet we have available to us while living on a Permaculture Farm.
Tour of the Mongolian GerCome along for a quick tour of the Mongolian Ger we just moved into on a Permaculture Farm in the Pacific Northwest. I’m really loving this more minimalist lifestyle, and am happy to be able to share a bit of that with you.