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Topics - John P

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Trip reports / Mt Cardigan again
« on: October 12, 2018, 05:04:08 PM »
With a weather forecast of around 80F for October 10, I thought another trip to Mt Cardigan would be a good thing to do. (See last year's report, As before, I went up the Duke's Ski Trail, to avoid encounters with other hikers, but came back down the regular trail, assuming that late in the day, nobody would be coming up. This proved to be a successful plan. It was actually a pretty warm climb, and I was exhausted by the time I got to the top, and never recovered for the rest of the walk.

The car thermometer was still saying 75 when I drove off at sunset, so I took the risk of going to a nearby state park on a lake. I thought there might be a closed gate and "No entry" signs, but in fact it was open but unattended, with a few people left on the beach. The last ones obligingly departed as the light faded, and I went back to the car for a towel and had a very pleasant swim. You can't expect warm water in the second week of October, but I thought it was still a delightful swim. Just what a weary body needed!

The pictures are thumbnails.         

At the AMC lodge there was a helicopter picking up supplies to fly up to the high cabin, that they rent to visitors. I remarked to one of the ground crew, “I bet this is costing a bundle”, and he replied, “Oh yes”.

Here's the old Volvo that drove the rope tow. It and I are a year rustier than we were last year.

This is the machinery that pulled the cable. It involved a drive shaft from the car via universal joints, and a lot of V-belts.

Finished the climb up through the woods onto the rocks of Mt Firescrew, and feeling pretty well-worked.

My lunch spot on Firescrew, which is a sub-peak of Cardigan. I could have dined on the main peak, but it was late, and I expected to find people on the summit (which proved to be true) but here I was all alone.

Entering the woods on the way down, enjoying the last mountain view.

This should have shown a magical view of sunlight coming through golden foliage and a carpet of crimson leaves on the ground. But the camera just didn't catch it properly.

My final stop, at Wellington State Park on Newfound Lake. I went hoping to sneak a swim, and succeeded, but that's when the camera battery died.

Trip reports / A couple of days in western MA
« on: October 02, 2018, 08:00:12 PM »
This is basically unchanged from a posting I did on the Northeast Naturist Hiking Enthusiasts group on Facebook, though I only put the first picture there. Sage's Ravine is a large campsite on the Appalachian Trail right at the Connecticut-Massachusetts border.

Ten days ago I did a trip to western Massachusetts, which was designed to get me to a textile group hike on Sept 22, with the Western Massachusetts Hilltown Hikers, who list their events with Facebook. The day before was the Equinox, of course (not astronomically, apparently) and I'd have liked to get to a group "Equinox hike" in New Jersey (I heard later that it got 10 people) but in marginal weather it just seemed too far to go on my own. But I drove out west and walked in to Sage's Ravine, which I'd never been to before, though AT hikers talk about it a lot. It was cool but very humid, and I did do some of the walk nude, though once I hit the AT there were enough other people to make me put my chicken feathers on.

Then that night I camped at Upper Goose Pond (dinner at McD's in Lee, then walked up the trail wearing boots, headlamp and pack in a misty almost-rain) and did the walk the next day. After the walk I stopped off at the Westfield River in Huntington and had a nice little swim, and drove away without putting clothes on. As I drove into Westfield I felt the need to don the feathers again, and a few minutes after that I found myself stopped at a traffic light with a state cop in the adjacent lane. I was glad to be in some plumage then! Here are some pictures by the West Branch of the Westfield River. It has three branches, East, Middle and West, and I've skinny-dipped 'em all! The second picture is me not dressed on my way back to turn off the camera (perched in a tree, but not feathered).

General Naturism Discussion / Now it's bikes in Philadelphia!
« on: September 13, 2018, 06:09:15 AM »
World Naked Bike Ride was there on Sept 8. Maybe it didn't totally change the world, but people seem to have enjoyed it:

I think I know the red-haired guy.

General Naturism Discussion / French bike safety ad
« on: September 02, 2018, 06:23:12 PM »
The headline says "Cycling: a helmet or nothing!" (Which doesn't quite match the concept). And down at the bottom, it says "Protect what's important. Wear a helmet." and at the bottom right, "Move smart: stop sports accidents".

Trip reports / Sudbury River, Wayland Massachusetts
« on: August 31, 2018, 02:03:00 AM »
We've had a lot of hot weather recently, and last week I made a voyage on one of the local rivers. Maybe that wasn't such a good idea, as there's no shade out on the water! But I planned on making it a photographic trip, with the hope of making some pictures of myself in the boat. I was thinking of a swim at one point, but at the critical moment some people showed up, and I decided to skip it.

For a lot of its navigable length, the Sudbury River flows through Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.

Yes, it says “No entry” but I arrived by boat, from behind the sign, so I feel innocent.

I brought a tripod to put the camera on, and did some selfies.

I think this one is the best.

The camera has a mode where it takes a picture every 15 seconds, so I floated around for a few minutes in front of it, but I never knew when the pictures were actually being taken.

Then I found an area of flooded forest (no, not mangroves!) and fixed the camera in a tree using a different gadget.

I got a lot of images of the boat wedged among the trees! It's a good thing there's no sound track recording my frustration.

This is the setup with the mini-tripod attached to a branch. Picture taken with the phone that I only use as a GPS unit.

General Naturism Discussion / Underground nudity
« on: August 06, 2018, 12:36:53 AM »
Recently there was a dedicated "Nude day" at Howe Caverns in New York State. For a mere $65, you could go there and have a drink, and be issued a bathrobe, then go down to the cave via elevator and walk around for an hour or so, at a temperature of 52F. A lot of naturists have said that this was a wonderful example of acceptance of nudity in a place where it's not normally expected. I'd like to join the general approval, but the problem is that the management chose to make it an adults-only event, and accompany the nudity with various suggestive jokes--ironically, although kids were kept out, it comes across as pretty juvenile. So altogether, I'm not sure whether it was a good thing or not. Something new, anyway. A new twist on "outdoor nudity", and you can be sure no neighbors were offended by accidentally seeing what was happening.

I'll add a link to an article from a local paper, which I think gives you an idea of what it involved. A quote is "Along the way, Howe Caverns staffers in bathrobes held up thought-provoking and humorous signs to ease any tensions. Things like, "Happiness isn't size specific," and "A wee bit nipply." ([The manager] told me the event was initially going to be called "Nips and Nubs," but that was dropped because of the sexual connotations)." Finally, everyone got handed a medal saying "You're a sexy beast! Howe Caverns Naked in the Cave 2018."

Trip reports / Solstice Day hike in Vermont
« on: June 22, 2018, 05:19:46 PM »
The Solstice Hike took place on June 21 (of course) on the Long Trail/Appalachian Trail in the Mt Tabor area. There were 14 hikers, and although we started under worrying clouds, we had clear blue sky almost the whole day, with temperature in the 70s and low humidity. The air simply felt good! Some of the group spent the previous night at the Grout Pond campsites (for which they now charge $16 a night, not a pleasant innovation) and planned on returning there after the hike.

The trail was well-populated with hikers out on walks from days to months long, and they were almost all cheerful and friendly about "Naked Hiking Day", which some of them had heard of and some not. There was one woman we passed who clearly disliked the nudity, and stepped well off the trail to let us pass by, but that was the only negative reaction. In spite of encouragement, however, nobody stripped off after meeting us! We passed one hiker who was actually celebrating Naked Hiking Day, but he was doing it with some kind of tied-on rosette of leaves, which we tried to talk him into discarding. Two miles from the end, we reached Little Rock Pond, where again we talked to some textile hikers, and most of us had an excellent swim. We finished the walk just after 5pm.

Sorry, I can't show much in the way of photos, because I didn't ask people's permission to put pictures on the Internet. But here are two of our group with their backs turned, along with the fig-leaf guy and his buddy:

Free Range Naturism / Solstice hike, Vermont June 21
« on: June 08, 2018, 02:33:14 AM »
On Thursday, June 21 (the summer solstice, AKA Naked Hiking Day on the Appalachian Trail) there will be a nude hike in central Vermont. The meeting place is at the Long Trail/Appalachian Trail parking area on Forest Road 10 east of Mt Tabor, Vt, at 0900.  The group leaves some cars there then takes other cars to the trailhead on the Long Trail/Appalachian Trail east of Wallingford VT, because the hike is 10 miles one-way.  The hike includes an opportunity for a skinny-dip in the beautiful Little Rock Pond.

If you have questions, please contact Ed Lamby (

If you're a GPS user, the point to aim for is N43.3728, W72.9628. And if you're coming from the east, the best route is probably to cross the Green Mountains on Rte 30, and approach the rendezvous from Rte 7 on the west side. Forest Road 10 is certainly passable, but it's a long winding road that'll slow you down.

Some people like to drive up to the start the previous night and camp out. There's a nice campsite about a mile south of Road 10 on the Long Trail, with a shelter (could be occupied, though) and room for tents. That's what I expect to do, but I'm likely to come in well after dark. Have headlamp, will travel.

Naturism & Art / My pal Dave
« on: May 24, 2018, 05:58:49 PM »
Dan and me:

Dave and me:

Free Range Naturism / Hike in southern Vermont, 5-26-18
« on: May 21, 2018, 05:35:20 PM »
Posted on behalf of the organizer:

Ok, Saturday, May 26th, about 11 am, I am doing a Clothing Optional hike in VT that starts at Harriman Reservoir Dam parking, basically across the lake from the Ledges. It is an easy hike, basically walking a closed dirt road along the shore at times. We will be doing lunch at a beach along the way, swimming optional. It is supposed to be a full walk thru so car/s will be on both ends of trail. So pack your own lunch and drinks, water suggested as well.

If interested, please contact me via my email, So far there are 2 to 3 of us with a few more possibly.

Factory Farmed Naturism / Eastern Naturist Gathering, June 27-July 1
« on: April 15, 2018, 05:56:37 AM »
The Naturist Society's Eastern Naturist Gathering will take place at Camp Timber Trails in Tolland, Massachusetts from June 27 to July 1. If you register by April 15, you get a discount, so move quickly! I've signed up, and I'll be doing a talk about naturist hiking, plus a daily walk around the camp grounds, or some such thing. Would anyone from this group like to attend?  Oh, by the way, the campground (which TNS hasn't visited before)  only has a few cabins available for rent, and they all went very quickly. You'll have to plan on tent or RV camping. Food service will be included with registration.

I put this in "Factory farmed" because it's an organized event that takes place at a fixed location, and this section doesn't get much business!

Naturism & Art / Coming to your screen (if you're French)
« on: December 17, 2017, 05:59:31 PM »
I got this off a French website and ran it through Google Translate, then I kicked the translation around to get it into better English, except for one sentence which I just can't quite understand. It's worth a quick look at the original though, because there are pictures.

"Nu" ("Naked"), the new French series where everyone is naked.

CAPA has already produced the Braquo or Versailles series, but a completely different costume budget has been allocated to Nu, coming on OCS. A police series, certainly, but also comic and political. And especially a series about futurism (or horror depending on your degree of modesty) that imagines a post-terrorist world in which everyone is obliged to be naked. Its creator, Olivier Fox, a veteran director of "classic" crime series, proposed the project to CAPA, then OCS, a year ago. The filming was completed in October 2017. He told TETU where he got such a plan:

"I had an idea during the period of terrorist attacks in France and our attempts to achieve a feeling of "total security", and I told myself that the only way to check what people were carrying would be that everyone is naked!"

So he imagined the story of a cop who falls into a coma then wakes up in 2026 and discovers that in order to fight against the feeling of insecurity, European governments (with the exception of the English, as Brexit let them avoid it) took a drastic step: the Naked Law. It forces citizens to be naked in public, to ensure complete transparency: no more hidden weapons, explosives, secrets, no more social barriers. For the past 4 years, everyone has been lighter in theory under the banner of "Freedom, Equality, Nudity ...". A paranoid imposition that paradoxically makes people very happy.

Franck, the cop transported in time, will resume service and have to conduct - naked - an investigation around the death of one of the designers of this law of transparency, found dressed in the forest. Franck will then discover that behind the diktat of openness, many lies still hide. We are in a classic crime series, but naked and funny.

One immediately thinks of Ryad Satouf's cinematographic dystopia, Jacky in the Realm of Girls, in which men were subject to the matriarchal power of a society opposite to ours. A reversal of codes so anchored inside us that we can hardly imagine it.

"It will be more like a good big episode of the English series "Black Mirror", in 10 episodes of 26 minutes, says Olivier Fox, libertarian inspired as in the movies of the Larrieu brothers , or even Guiraudie's "Stranger by the Lake" or the film "More" by Schroeder ... "

Naked, yes, all the time, but not about sex (unlike the "Porn" series where sex is the subject, for example)! The goal was to "totally desexualize nudity, the law forbids erections in public for example, like judgments on bodies ... Planning this, I did not want to bring eroticization of the body. No voyeurism. We are like a naturist camp, but not libertine like in Cap D'Agde."

This is what seduced and certainly didn't discourage Satya Dusaugey, the main character (the cop):

"Yes it's naked, unambiguous, but the goal is not to show genitals, that wouldn't last 5 minutes. There is a real scenario, a real story. The director takes this nudity for granted, we hide nothing with flowerpots, but he made tight shots, wide shots, as in a normal movie, with the same techniques as for any film!"

Are some scenes more difficult to shoot?

"Once you get started, you don't think about it. Of course, when you see your colleagues coming, you have two minutes and then you get to work. In the end, I didn't think I was showing myself naked all the time, I found myself beautifully dressed. Genitals in themselves, outside the context, are not very pretty, neither man nor woman. It loses its mystery when it's out in the open."

No false body parts, therefore, in silicones; all bodies will be true in Nu. But behind this, lies, unspoken words: "It's a delirium we all have had, very motivating, to play a hermetic character to this universe and that will end up there, criticizing the society where we seek all the truth, discover that behind the nakedness there is always a lot of corruption " [That last sentence is exactly what Google Translate came up with.]

Making nudity normal is the subject at the center of the film but not the story. It is above all a reflection on exposing oneself, telling the truth, about the power and the meaning one gives to the body and to our liberties. And for Satya Dusaugey, an analysis of our present:

"We are supposedly free with certain laws but we can say much less than before ... sometimes rightly, sometimes accusations fall on you. Do we face a certain loss of freedom? With social networks, information channels, we are in search of controversy, not reflection."

A series much less light than it seems, then ....

"Nu", directed and written by Olivier Fox, co-written with Olivier Duplat and Judith Godinot. Produced by Arnaud Figaret / CAPA Drama. Currently in post-production. Spring 2018 broadcast on OCS.

Free Range Naturism / Naked European Walking Tour 2018
« on: November 25, 2017, 04:25:04 PM »
It's early to be thinking about summer 2018, but the Naked European Walking Tour gets arranged well ahead of time. You probably need to get an application in by Christmas if you want to go. I went on the NEWT2017 trip and I highly recommend it! It's always in Austria, but never the same exact place, so I can't say where it will be; somewhere with good hiking opportunities! But I won't be doing NEWT2108--maybe the year after. Note how inexpensive this is--once you get to the location, it's just 210 euros for everything.

To see what it's like, look at the Naked European Walking Tour 2017 thread in "Trip Reports".

Hiking trip organized in Austria during the summer of 2018 from Saturday 28 July 16h00 to Saturday 04 August 10h00- thanks to the initiative of Richard Foley who created this gathering over 10 years ago. The accommodation is in a chalet in rooms from 4 to 6 people.
The principle of the group is a multi national composition (eleven different countries in 2017) and family (men, women and children). The hikes are adapted according to the level of the participants. Everyone participates in the life of the group (collective cooking etc.)
The price charged to each participant makes it possible to pay for the hiring of the chalet and the purchases of foodstuffs, hotel taxes, beer and wine: 210 euros for the week.

Information and requests to participate: contact

PS places are limited depending on accommodation capacity.

Trip reports / Nubanusit Lake, Spoonwood Pond
« on: October 30, 2017, 02:55:29 PM »
The anchor's weighed, and the journey's made!

This was a last voyage on October 27, before cold weather arrives. Another solo excursion, with my single-seat canoe. I have canuded here before, but this time it wasn't warm enough, though I did show how it ought to be done a couple of times.

Nubanusit lake and Spoonwood Pond have an interesting geography. As you can see on the map,  they almost meet at two points. At the northeastern end of Spoonwood, there's actually a dam, where water from Spoonwood pours over into Nubanusit. At the southwestern end, there's a carry trail a couple of hundred yards long (though shown in blue on the map, as though it were a stream!) This makes it possible to do a trip in the form of a loop, down one lake and back through the other.

Here's the map; the squares are 1km, so you can get an idea of the scale. I started where the road passes by the extreme southwest end of Nubanusit Lake.

The launch point, a little private beach with no-trespassing signs, but on a weekday in October I doubt if anyone cared.

Off down the shore of Nubanusit Lake.

Around the point, and facing the sun.

This is the dam where water pours over into Nubanusit Lake.

After hauling the boat onto the dam.

Another view while properly dressed!

Dead leaves in the water, and some which soon will be.

Looking down Spoonwood Pond.

At the start of the carry trail back to Nubanusit.

Again, we can do this in the right costume!

A view down the carry trail.

On the way home, a view of Harrisville, New Hampshire. Yes, sometimes New England really does look that way!

Though Indochina can be hot,
Don't take it as a nudist spot.
Cambodians get filled with rancor
When folk undress while touring Angkor.
You may be warm, but please do not
Remove your clothes at Angkor Wat.

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