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Jul 30, 2013

https://www.facebook.com/notes/black-hawk-adventures/diving-black-hawk-news-adventures-guide/448736178556406

Since 1943, scuba diving has become a famous activity practiced the world over after the invention of the aqualung by Jacques-Yves Cousteau. Diving could be dangerous if you are not qualified to do so but there are now many training programs to meet the requirements as a diver. There is PADI, NAUI and CMAS after, divers can rent equipment, request air fills, and dive without any higher supervision but it is always recommended to dive with a buddy.

Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia. By the bay of Kota Kinabalu Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park is a marine park made up of a number of islands. The waters here offer divers a first glimpse of Borneo’s profuse array of corals and underwater creatures. Its calm water is ideal for macro and close up photography, with a World War II Japanese freighter wreck nearby for the adventurous. 

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Posted: Jul 30, 2013 9:50pm
Jul 3, 2013

http://blackhawk-mines.com/2013/06/28/black-hawk-adventures-a-family-of-travelers-lifes-always-an-adventure/

After 14 years, four children, 55 countries, and 250 000 km, this Argentinean couple had a dream of travelling around the world by car and still on the road fulfilling their dream.

In 1999, Herman Zapp and his wife Candelaria climbed into their car and drove out of Argentina with only $4 000 in hand.  Using their 1928 Graham Paige they went to Alaska as both wanted to go, so that’s what they did.  “I saw the car two months before we left and fell in love with it so I brought it,” Herman said in Cape Town, where they now live. They arrived in South Africa last year.

In the same year Herman, an electrician, and Candelaria, a secretary, sold their house, packed what they could into the car and left. “Everyone thought we were crazy,” Herman said. “But, really, who is crazy – the one who goes for the dream or the one who doesn’t?”

Even that they are doing what they wanted at first the couple has some fears.  “That first day was the hardest,” said Herman. But the pair was determined. “If you let your fear take hold, your life will pass you by,” he explained.

The couple, Herman Zapp and Candelaria was married for 20 years. “We think we will be around forever but it’s important to rethink life,” said Herman. “My mother died when she was only 46, the only legacy I have taken from her is to ‘do it now’.”

They survive mainly on the kindness of others, having been taken in by more than 2 500 households all around the world. “You have to give a chance to people to show how good they can be.”

They have three children, three boys and a girl and every child were born in different countries. Herman said being on the road was the best education they could get.

“School is important, but it’s not the most intelligent person who survives, it is the person who learns how to adapt the fastest.”  The husband is in no doubt that his children will be better people for experiencing all the different cultures of the places they’ve been to.

“We’ve been to Australia and Canada and have stayed with kids who’ve had rooms full of toys, but we’ve also been to countries like Cambodia where children have made toys from sticks.”

This kind of education, said Herman, is priceless.

“Now they know that everything has value and meaning.” Candelaria said the children were excellent travellers and adapted easily.

The Zapps, are currently living in a flat in Constantia, Cape Town.  They supplement their income by selling their book, Spark Your Dreams and giving motivational talks.  Their next plan as soon as they have enough money, they plan to head to Egypt for their next adventure.

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Posted: Jul 3, 2013 11:08pm
Jun 24, 2013

http://latest.blackhawk-mines.com/2013/06/24/diving/

Since 1943, scuba diving has become a famous activity practiced the world over after the invention of the aqualung by Jacques-Yves Cousteau. Diving could be dangerous if you are not qualified to do so but there are now many training programs to meet the requirements as a diver. There is PADI, NAUI and CMAS after, divers can rent equipment, request air fills, and dive without any higher supervision but it is always recommended to dive with a buddy.

If you are planning to go diving here are some great places you can visit:

Vinales, Cuba. Maria la Gorda and Cayo Levisa are Vinales’ great diving site and it is two of the most candid diving spots in the world. The stunning Maria la Gorda’s black corals overflowing with marine life such as barracudas and red snappers is a good choice for a diving spot. While Cayo Levisa is a dreamy mangrove-island on a 3km long coral-reef.

Dahab, Egypt. For divers of all levels Dehab is an easy shore access of a great spot for divers. It has deep water and extreme visibility. You can have the chance to see not only large numbers of reef species but also the occasional pelagic and even the odd shark.

Bali, Indonesia. Warm tropical waters, marine landscaped coral reefs, wreck diving and abundant tropical fish and mammals, these are just few of what Bali can offer divers. Not to mention there are plenty of dive sites all around the compact island and each with crystal waters and the opportunity to dive with dolphins. The three of the top spots are Menjangan Island, Tulamben and the island of Nusa Penida.

Boracay, Philippines is a Pilipino national marine preserve. It is one of the most famous diving sites in Southeast Asia. This is one of the great beaches in the world which makes it a great choice for a holiday vacation plus it offers a wide range of dive activities. You will also enjoy the numerous good quality resorts, restaurants, bars and nightlife.

Koh Tao, Thailand. If you want a pure relaxation and a getaway from the outside world, then this is definitely the perfect place for you. This place is small Tropical Island covered in jungle, surrounded by many quiet, palm tree covered beaches. You can enjoy snorkeling and scuba diving. You will definitely enjoy the corals and the turtles.

Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia. By the bay of Kota Kinabalu Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park is a marine park made up of a number of islands. The waters here offer divers a first glimpse of Borneo’s profuse array of corals and underwater creatures. Its calm water is ideal for macro and close up photography, with a World War II Japanese freighter wreck nearby for the adventurous.

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Posted: Jun 24, 2013 8:51pm
Jun 17, 2013

http://www.casperjournal.com/news/article_a6fa1ea5-d34c-52a9-b2cb-f9788e5c0c57.html

During the mid-1800s, thousands of people traveled through Casper as they emigrated to California, Oregon and Utah. Many crossed the North Platte River at Bessemer Bend and traveled across the plains, riding in the jostling wagons or walking in all kinds of weather with hopes of reaching Independence Rock around the 4th of July.

Today's travelers go in style. These covered wagons possess windows and air conditioning. However, one can see many of the same sights as the 19th century emigrants who rode and walked the often hot and dusty sagelands.

Historians believe nearly 500,000 people trekked through Natrona County along what's now the Oregon, California, Mormon and Pony Express trails between 1841 and 1869. At Bessemer Bend, visitors will find interpretive signs that discuss these trails as well as the now-defunct town of Bessemer, which sprang up in 1888.

“It's a trip through time,” said Eve Skillman, outdoor recreation planner for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), High Plains District Office in Casper.

The Bessemer Bend Interpretive Site is managed by the BLM. In addition to the interpretive signage, the area features picnic facilities (including a gazebo), an ADA-accessible trail, and fishing opportunities. A boat ramp is located across the road at a fishing access site, Skillman added.

Floating and fishing are important activities in this area. People can catch rainbow trout, some brown trout, and the occasional cutthroat trout, Skillman said. The average-sized haul is 18 to 22 inches, she added.

Bessemer Bend serves as “the jumping-off point” for the National Historic Trails Auto Tour Route, Skillman stated. From this point, one primarily travels gravel and “natural soil” roads as the county road loops about 40 miles and connects back to Highway 220. From this point, travelers can continue to Independence Rock, an important stop during the trails’ heydays. Sites and stops along the auto tour route, which take in County Roads 308 and 319, include Avenue of Rocks, Willow Springs, and Prospect (or Ryan) Hill. Trail markers can be seen at various locations along the route as can the occasional former Pony Express station. Interpretive signage can also be found at Prospect Hill, according to Skillman.

Although travelers are welcome along the auto tour route, much of the lands on which the trails are found are privately owned. Skillman cautions people to know where they are and not to step onto private land. Maps and a trail guide are available at the BLM's High Plains District Office, located off CY Avenue; trail guides are also available at the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center at 1501 N. Poplar St.

There are many safety guidelines for traveling the trails, Skillman said, including knowing the weather forecast. “You can run into very muddy conditions when the road is wet,” she said.

Additionally, she advises taking plenty of food and water and letting people know where you're going, as well as ensuring your vehicle’s gas tank is full. The sites are “leave no trace,” and that includes not riding mountain bikes on trail ruts, Skillman noted.

Once a traveler returns to Highway 220 and pavement, Independence Rock to the southwest rises 128 feet above the prairie. A place of encampment along the trail, many emigrants left their signatures carved or painted on the rock; many of these are still visible. Designated a State Historic Site, visitors will find restrooms and picnic sites as well as a trail around the rock. A caution to be noted: rattlesnakes like this spot, too! From Independence Rock, it's about 50 miles via Highway 220 to return to Casper, making this excursion an insightful and educational adventure.

To visit Bessemer Bend, travel about 10 miles southwest of Casper on Highway 220 to County Road 308 and turn right. Ensure your gas tank is full before leaving Casper and take plenty of food and water for the journey. You might also take some sunscreen if you plan to do some walking or hiking. Also, check the weather forecast before embarking on your adventure. Respect property designations and remember to leave no trace of your visit.

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Posted: Jun 17, 2013 12:51am

 

 
 
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