Purple Martin Explosion

Last year, we had 4 nesting Purple Martin pair. This season has been like no other so far, with the first couple of martins arriving March 10. Since then, they literally poured in. Last nest check done last sunday, we had 23 nesting pair, 116 eggs and 4 babies so far. We're hoping for 30+ pair total this year. The Purple Martin sub-adult males are now showing up in force, and as usual, acting like rowdy kids.

We can finally say we have a Purple Martin colony established.


The 2016 Meltdown Vintage Motorcycle Show – Hendersonville, NC

Held at Southern Appalachian Brewery in Hendersonville, NC. Needless to say, I went inside to take a look at the bar.

Plenty of beer faucets.

And plenty of beautiful old motorcycles.

This lady had bought this old Beemer just a few days ago, and decided to ride in down to the show. She was excited, to say the least.

More vintage from back in the days

Always wanted one of these CB900's back…..well….when I was younger.

Beautiful Triumph paint job.

And some "All Things Leather"

and strange colorful buildings

Well worth the trip. Going again next year.


Blue Ridge, NC

Wish Lois was here. But, she had to work today. Headed to Meltdown Vintage Motorcycle Show in Hendersonville, NC tomorrow.

Life is good. 

Klim Badlands Adventure Riding Jacket

I needed a new "do it all" riding jacket as a replacement for my trusty Aerostich Darien jacket, which has served me for years, and never let me down. The seam sealing and goretex was beginning to wear out, so it was time to replace it with something similar, or even better as a all weather 4-season bomb-proof jacket.

The choice was easy. Klim Badlands. I have used it already on a few trips, and I am very impressed with the quality and workmanship put into this jacket. Klim don't do liners, so this is a full gortex waterproof jacket shell only, with all the features and protection you can imagine.

My cons:

  • The jacket is somewhat heavy at 7 or so pounds. Klim claims it is lighter than the older Badlands Pro.
  • It is a little stiff, but will limber up when broken in
  • I don't particularly like the long "tail" in the rear of the jacket. I'd like to see it a tad shorter. No big deal though.
  • Chest armor in my way sometimes when trying to close the jacket. No big deal her either.

My pros:

  • A LOT of storage pockets. I don't like to store any items up in the chest area because of possible rib breakage in a possible getoff, but there are a lot of nice inside and outside pockets. Two of the main outside pockets are waterproof.
  • Heavy armor in back, shoulders, elbows and chest. Real sturdy.
  • Lifetime warranty on waterproofness and zippers.
  • Cinch around the neck, which prevents water intrusion in heavy rain.
  • Ability to snap open the front of the jacket in the collar for better ventilation.
  • Feels absolutely bombproof. Heavy duty YKK zipper all around.


Added below are the bullet points on the Klim Badlands. As you can see, it is packed with features.


  • Improved comfort and fit
  • Gore-Tex 3-layer pro shell material on main body reduces weight without sacrificing durability/weatherproofness 
  • Gore-Tex 3-layer pro shell talisman

     abrasion-resistant material on shoulders, elbows and forearm shrug off abrasion

  • Gore-Tex 3-layer pro shell Armacor material on back, chest and waist pockets provides outstanding abrasion and tear resistance
  • Easier hydration bladder access
  • Jacket-to-pant zipper has been standardized (40cm) which enables users to zip different pants and jackets together
  • Improved collar fit for greater coverage and comfort
  • Collar can snap back to allow for more ventilation
  • Custom tpu zipper pulls, pocket flap grips and zipper garages
  • Hypalon headphone access port
  • Shortened wrist gaiter for increased comfort 
  • Additional venting ports on outer chest—10 ports total
  • Improved cuff material resists wear
  • Arm vent storm flaps feature a more secure closure and opening system while providing higher levels of weatherproof construction
  • Improved venting via easier-to-access side chest ports and lower body vents
  • Refined armor placement and exterior adjustment straps keep limb armor in place 

Exterior Features:

  • Guaranteed to keep you dry Gore-Tex 3-layer pro laminate technology
  • Gore-Tex pro laminates—the most breathable, most durable motorsports shell construction available
  • High-mobility active fit patterning for unmatched comfort 
  • Gore-Tex -layer pro shell material on main body
  • Gore-Tex 3-layer pro shell talisman Superfabric abrasion-resistant material on shoulders, elbows and forearm
  • Gore-Tex 3-layer pro shell Armacor material on back, chest and waist pockets
  • Pre-curved arm and rider positioning construction 
  • Gore-tex stretch back/shoulder panels minimize restriction of movement 
  • 3M Scotchlite industrial grade reflective materials on panels and trim for increased low-light visibility
  • Velcro brand fasteners adjustable wrist closures
  • Forearm and bicep sleeve adjustment straps
  • VT10 YKK Vislon Aquagard water resistant zippers

Integrated Armor System:

  • D3O T5 EVO Pro XT elbow and shoulder pieces included (exceed level 1 ce certification for pren1621-1:2011 testing)
  • D3O viper pro back piece (exceeds level 2 CE certification for en1621-2 testing)
  • Siliconized spacer mesh front chest armor 
  • Adjustable armor pockets for refined armor placement

Cargo, Hydration, Comfort and Support Systems:

  • 7 external pockets (2 chest, 2 waist, spot pocket on left chest, id/licence pocket on left forearm one large storage pocket on exterior back)
  • Four internal pockets + one hidden interior passport pocket (2 zippered, 2 mesh stash, 1 hidden)
  • Waterproof pouch in hidden left chest pocket
  • Hydration bladder compartment and internal hose route (bladder not included) 
  • Removable and adjustable kidney belt jacket-stabilizing support system
  • Bottom hem adjustment
  • Jacket-to-pant zipper integration system 
  • 4 sleeve adjustment straps
  • Lined
    comfort collar
  • Moisture-wicking mesh comfort liner
  • Velcro wrist closures
  • Key fob: yellow clip attached to shock cord in top of chest pockets

Max Flow Ventilation: 

  • 2 chest, 2 side, 2 biceps and 2 forearm intake vents
  • 2 vertical back exhaust vents