Another product review (no sales pitch)

I had some folks ask me about the small solar charger I used while hiking and even at the RTR in Quartzite, AZ.

So to stay true to my word here’s a video I made actually while I was in Mississippi on the Natchez Trace.

I hope this answers some questions and helps with buying decision .
As I promised no sales pitch, they are available at Harbour Freight and probably other “outlet” type stores.

As always…  “Get out, be safe and go adventure”

Food is where you find it – – urban foraging

I started trying to eat oatmeal for breakfast on a regular basis.  The thing is I really like apples in my maple and brown sugar oatmeal.  Now I know you wondering what does this have to do with urban foraging. Well nothing really other than while walking Layla the other day I came upon some apples in a public park.  Thinking these the ornamental variety I started to pass over them.  But I couldn’t. I had to know.  So I cut into one and it was very tasty !!
So I gathered up six of the ones that were not obviously damaged and finished walking Layla.
These six little apples provided almost a full cup of diced apples for my oatmeal. 

Yes I did throw away about 20% of the harvest.  But since these were ground harvested I didn’t think that too bad a yield.  They cooked down nicely and were very flavorful in the oatmeal.

The lesson here is always be aware of your environment it may hold the things you need at that moment.  Did I already have apples?  Well yes but somehow these that were nature’s gift were better.
I really want to make the point that readiness is so much a state of mind that you carry with you daily.  It’s not about “gear” and “stuff”, it is about knowledge and experience.  If you don’t take the time learn and then go put that knowledge to the test all the gear/stuff piled around you is simply something to weigh you down.
Is getting one freebie while walking in the park a big deal, well you tell me.  How many other people tapped into that resource?  How many other people even SAW that as a resource?  Do you think I’ll go back in a day or two?

I know some of you are into the whole “prepper, end of time, civil unrest, collapse of government” sort of thinking.  I think that there are so many other things that can change your lives in a moment that really do happen to everyday people.  Loss of job, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, injury, illness, are just a few calamities that every day befall people.  While it is good to build your resources in the form of emergency supplies (we’ve all seen milk/bread vanish at the mention of snow) let’s continue to share knowledge and experiences.

I started the Facebook blog Dan Cordray Readiness Resources to share ideas about being ready in life.  But since Facebook changes they way they act, I’ll be posting those ideas here along with the adventures Layla and I find.

So get out, be safe and go adventure!


Tumbling Creek Adventure

This adventure started with a storm,, or least driving through one. But, after hours of storms I found my self in a beautiful setting…

Yes, the boss was watching while I made this post.
Tumbling Creek is in the Cherokee National Forest in TN.  The campground is not that hard to find, if you’ve gotten good directions.  My purpose for being here was to meet some other nomads and enjoy their company.

One of them turned out to be very knowledgeable in the ways of the forest.  Rita told me being raised in Germany she  had to learn all the “womanly ways”.
Now before anyone can protest about sexist remarks, those were her words.  And honestly I’m glad she learned them and is willing to pass along that knowledge.

She stopped by my camp and asked if I would like to go with her to photograph and harvest some mushrooms.  I certainly would!  I’ve never been one to pass up the chance to learn something new about my forest home..

Little did I realize she had found the mother-lode of mushrooms!  Like all things in the forest these were not given up easily.  She asked me to look, look at the forest and did I see anything out of place?  I thought some brightly colored debris had washed up from them creek.  Look to the left of where she is standing.

We had to duck and turn through the brush and trees and even remove their guardian from our path.
 I must say she spotted before I did…

He was a common Black Racer set to scare off any that would find the mushrooms.  I placed him out of our path so we could continue our quest.
Here is what we found…


THIS QUITE THE FIND!!!

Lobster mushrooms and lots of them.

These are not only edible they are quite delicious.

There is probably three to four pounds in this one place.

She told me that to harvest these you should trim them about and inch or so from where them stem attaches to the tree.  This leaves the mycelium intact so that the mushroom will grow out again next year.


Notice how free and clear of blemishes they are.  Rita pointed out that there were no holes in the stems indicating no bugs had been in them.  When bugs enter the fleshy part of the mushroom they often times are headed for the mycelium and the rest of where the mushroom is attached.

 She was very happy with this find.


 And I had a great time with her cooking up the ‘rooms and some fish and a salad of artichokes and black olives.

Doesn’t that just look good???

Sauteed in a little butter with onions.

It all met with cuzzin’ Dick’s approval.

Now that’s how it’s done in the forest.


I’ll be posting some more about the Fall GTG at Tumbling Creek.
Right now the “boss” says it’s time for a walk…

Get out, be safe, and go adventure.