Monthly Archives: December 2016

Good night, and good luck… in 2017

North Star New Year

Some puck history, as we turn the page on 2016. It’s an old one; that’s the “Gumpster” in the front row.

Happy New Year


Overland

A Flashback Friday Edition:

Series Land Rover

A great, overhead shot of a Series Land Rover.


Rest in peace

Debbie Reynolds & Carrie Fisher


Aldo Leopold "Farm" quote


Sky Trail

Winter Sky Trail


1957 Chevrolet 150 “Black Widow”

'57 Black Widow

This ’57 Chevy 150, is one of six, factory backed racers built for the 1957 NASCAR Grand National Championship. Nicknamed the “Black Widows”, Chevy dominated NASCAR that year with their 283 powered 150’s.

'57 Chevy Black Widow

The Black Widows debuted at the Daytona Speed Week race of 17 February 1957, driven by Johnny Beauchamp, Buck Baker, Speedy Thompson, Rex White, Frankie Schneider and Jack Smith. Beauchamp would finish second, behind Cotton Owens and his Pontiac. Jack Smith would drive this car to victory 2 weeks later at Concord, NC. That race would see the Black Widows sweep, with Baker in second and Thompson in third. Smith would take the checkered flag again at Columbia, South Carolina; Hickory, North Carolina, and North Wilkesboro, which would be enough for Smith to drive this Chevy 150 to fifth place in the NASCAR season championship standings.

Black Widow interior

The Black Widows’ success would lead to the Series fuel-injection ban, that would remain in effect for another 55 years.

283 Black Widow engine

“Specially built in Detroit and shipped by rail to SEDCO for final preparation, each car was equipped with the new 283/283 HP small-block V8 with Rochester mechanical fuel injection, Fenton headers, a column-shifted 3-speed manual transmission, heavy-duty 3.90:1 rear end, high-performance Hydrovac power brakes, 20-gallon fuel tank and six-lug wheels.” — Mecum Auction Website

I love, absolutely LOVE, the fact that these racers were column shifters!

This, Jack Smith driven ’57 Chevy “Black Widow”, is up for auction in Kissimmee, Florida, between January 6 – 15, 2017. It is expected to bring in $150K-$250K.

What a sweet piece of automobile history.

All photos and car statistics come courtesy of Mecum Auctions.


Merry Christmas…

…From Alaska’s Interior

Christmas 2016


Lost Cabin

Empty cabin


Bogoslof erupts unexpectedly

bogoslof island
Bogoslof Island

The submarine volcano at Bogoslof Island in the Aleutian Chain has gone Red twice in two days. An ash plume was sent up 34,000 feet on Wednesday, causing some concern for passing aircraft.

Bogoslof Island was first mapped after it’s eruption in 1796. The 173 acre island has seen six eruptions since then, from various vents. The island rises to 490′ above sea level, but approximately 6000′ from the seabed.

Castle Rock
Castle Rock on Bogoslof Island; Photo credit: Ann Harding/AVO

“Castle Rock”, as seen above, is the eroded remnant of a dome from the 1796 eruption. Currently, AVO has downgraded the alert level to Orange.


Christmas Tree Wrapper

Ford Bronco at tree farm

The highlight of a recent visit to a Christmas Tree farm was the old Bronco pulling the machine that spins twine around the trees for transport. It had been 30 years, or more since I had last been at this farm. The farm seemed smaller, and there were large homes trespassing onto grounds where blue spruce used to stand.

Still… it was the Bronco that brought the best memories flooding back. When I first drove up to Alaska, I made the trip in a copper-colored Bronco like this one. Complete with the three on the tree.