Thursday, May 31, 2007

Wreck Beach Video

Seven Wonders - Wreck Beach
May 29, 2007 (Runs 3:54)
Meet the daring, baring Canadians who think Wreck Beach is one of Canada's Seven Wonders.

Wreck Beach Video

Clicking the image will open Media Player to play the video.
Alternatively, you can view the video from the CBC web page

Ever wanted to take a short tour of Wreck Beach in Vancouver, meet the people caring for this beach, understand why it's one of the finest nude beaches in North America . . . if not the world?

Well worth watching.

Kennedy Hot Springs History


Great article in last Sunday's Seattle Times Pacific Northwest Magazine supplement on the history and demise of Kennedy Hot Springs.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Nude Camping and Guard Duty

Catching the afternoon rays on a stony outcropping

Many of you know that I'm involved with bringing Scenic Hot Springs back into legal use, and I take that responsibility seriously. One of the problems we have at Scenic are those who wait until the owner leaves his property for the day for a chance to sneak on up to the springs to party. Night time partying has been our bane because of the litter, illegal fires, alcohol and general disrespect for the hot springs. Holiday weekends are the worst and we've taken to allowing a volunteer to campout overnight in the lower portions to intersect and turn around people heading on up to the springs under cover of darkness. Last year it was the Naked Gourmet who parked his van right in front of the gate and let his German Shepard roam on a very long leash. Those turning in off the highway suddenly got the message loud and clear in the form of a bright spotlight and a very loud dog. This year I did the guard duty and I was not interested in spending the night in my car under the towering trees further down. I like open spaces.

The nice thing is that once had I re-posted the property once again I pretty much had the property all to myself to wander around nude . . . hot springs are, after all, nude-friendly and expected. From where I perched high atop an outcropping of bedrock in the BPA clearcut I could easily spot any attempted approach long before any trespassers knew I was there to discourage them.

Not my normal backpacking tent but I'm
car-camping and enjoying the luxury

I was car camping, so I brought my North Face 22 tent. Normally when I backpack in I carry a small bivuoac tent that is extremely light and barely big enough to fit a sleeping bag and the pack. There is certainly no room to sit up. But when you backpack you retire early and you retire hard . . . exhausted. Not so car camping. So the North Face . . . arguably my favorite tent because I can set a candle lantern from a lanyard inside and sit up for as long as I want reading. There is no desire or need to go to sleep the moment you make camp. To round out the arrangements, I have a ThermoRest mattress and a down mummy bag to guarantee a toasty warm sleep. The combination serves me well even in subzero snow temperatures.

I should have brought my propane grill . . . I certainly had the room in the car . . . but I waffled to test out a new butane expedition burner that, with tank, weighed in around four ounces. The unit performed well and cooked my chilli, refilled my thermos with coffee and repeated the process the following morning with breakfast . . . scrambled eggs (the real ones) and toast. Also served to heat up the water for me to freshen up the next morning. I'm impressed, especially since the tank seemed to still have a lot of butant left in it. However, it will never replace the multi-fuel stove I've had for years. Butane does not perform very well at altitude. The multi will burn cheap, reliable kerosene, gasoline, lighter fuid . . . what not.

A camp chair was pure decadence. Very comfortable, though. I brought the coleman lantern, of course. For casting the glow of reassuring warm light around your campsite, nothing beats a kerosene burning coleman lantern. Except maybe a fire.

The dark does close in around you and a campfire feels good,
keeps you warm, and dispels the evening bugs

At one point as the sun went down, I briefly pulled out mosquito netting from my pack and draped it over the chair. Bugs . . . the nipping, biting sort of no-see-ems that make life miserable for nudists seem to come out in force at twilight. I hate bug spray . . . spray that Deet onto your skin and you can feel the organophosphate poisons tingling through. But a smoky fire works great. There is an old firering near my tent and plenty of deadwood laying about. I'm probably the worst firemaker ever . . . worrying the fire to death with my impatience. Firestarts are the only way to go. They will light and fuel even the most recalcitrant of green wood. Which is good because left on my own I couldn't get a book of matches to burn. Well, maybe not that bad.

Standing near a campfire also warms you appreciably as the evening turns nippy. Absolutely clear sky above, stars pinpoint sharp. A cold night, especially so in the mountains. The camp chair set close to a cheery fire, a few requisite marshmallows toasted on the flames and eaten with relish releases the pressures and stresses of life. Clients and customers can wait. While my cell phone will work here . . . with a little bit of aligning and finding the sweet spot . . . it's only purpose now is to alarm for seven o'clock in the morning. I try to take up reading a book I had put off for a long time but the stars continually pull me away. So much different out here.

Despite the fact that I usually don't go to bed very early, there is something magical about the crystal clear night skies in the mountains, totally devoid of light pollution. It mesmerizes you into a very relaxed state. I bank the remaining coals of my fire and let it burn down. Inside my tent it's into the sleeping bag, zip up the door and stare at the night sky through the mesh panels for awhile before falling into a deep sleep.

From the inside of my tent the following morning,
watching a bear scratch out its' morning meal
less than a 100 feet away

I beat my alarm clock awake the following morning . . . fully recharged and rested. Thinking about getting out of the sleeping bag into the chilly morning, I just sit there and stare out. Something moving catches my eyes. I realize it is a bear less than a hundred feet away doing the same thing I was thinking of doing . . . getting breakfast.

The bear is paying me no attention . . . intent on slowly pulling apart this old tree stump and licking up bugs and such. He . . . or she . . . is in no hurry and after steadying my initial surprise I just sit there and watch the bear. I will admit that I did calculate how much time it would take for me to sprint naked to where my car was parked. I figured the bear, if so inclined, would beat me there first. So I watched instead.

The bear did hear me turn my camera on . . . stared directly at me in my tent for half a minute. He knew I was there . . . just wasn't in the least bit interested. I snapped a few pictures. Eventually the bear wandered higher up onto the slopes and into the thick forest canopy. I got up and judiciously did my morning cooking near my car least I had a re-interested bear join me for breakfast of scrambled eggs and toast.

I kept camp for the rest of the day and took side excursion hikes over the property. A great two-day break from the city.

NAC Advisory: Oregon House Bill 3317


Copyright 2007 by the Naturist Action Committee, which is responsible for its content. Permission is granted for the posting, forwarding or redistribution of this message, provided that it is reproduced in its entirety and without alteration.

DATE: May 27, 2007
SUBJECT: Oregon House Bill 3317
TO: All Naturists and other concerned individuals

Dear Naturist,

The Naturist Action Committee (NAC) advises you of Oregon legislation. This legislation is NOT a present threat to naturists.


Oregon House Bill 3317 was poorly written 2007 legislation intended to redefine and punish the crime of so-called "private indecency." HB 3317 was a bill the Naturist Action Committee would surely have opposed vigorously if it had shown any signs of viability, but it was clear from the beginning that this bill was going nowhere. NAC kept a close eye on it and tracked it carefully.

You didn't see anything about it earlier on the NAC Web site or in the form of a NAC Action Alert or Advisory, because NAC tries to reserve those communication tools for meaningful issues. HB 3317 was a non-starter.

However, there has been a recent flurry of questions to NAC concerning the status of HB 3317, so NAC is issuing this Advisory.


HB 3317 officially died altogether on May 1, when it failed to advance from the committee that sponsored it.


House Bill 3317 was introduced on March 12, 2007, through the House Judiciary Committee. The measure was proposed in response to a local situation in Rainier, Oregon. An individual in that town had become known as Rainier's so-called "Naked Neighbor," because for years, he has been nude in his own back yard.

The Naked Neighbor's nudity does not contravene Oregon's current law, since he and those who have viewed him are all on private property. There were those who wanted to see the law expanded to prohibit nudity in one's own back yard. The effort died aborning.


This NAC Advisory is intended for informational purposes only. It concerns legislation that is not a present threat to naturists. The Naturist Action Committee is not asking for you to take specific action at this time.


You can access additional information on the Web site of the Naturist Action Committee.

Select "Alerts, Advisories and Updates." Under Current Updates, you'll find the text of this NAC Advisory, along with links to the complete text of Oregon House Bill 3317.


The Naturist Action Committee works to advance and protect the rights and interests of naturists. Even when legislation dies on its own, monitoring and tracking it is expensive. NAC relies entirely on the voluntary support of involved naturists. Please donate generously to NAC:

PO Box 132
Oshkosh, WI 54903

Or use your credit card to make a direct donation online through NAC's web site:

Thank you for choosing to make a difference.


Mark Storey
Board Member
Naturist Action Committee

Naturist Action Committee (NAC)
- PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Executive Dir. Bob Morton -
Board Member Mark Storey -
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick -

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Arcadia on Memorial Day

Preface: Arcadia is typically not considered a nudist venue by many but I find their grounds beautiful and the opportunity to enjoy being nude without any sexual or lewd emphasis. Arcadia does not allow children, therefore taking it out of the typical 'family-friendly' definition. However, that does not mean you can't enjoy the opportunity to enjoy being nude in a beautiful setting. Therefore, I'm going to include Arcadia events in my blog and leave it to the reader to make judgemental decisions. Rick


Memorial Day Weekend - and didn't make plans yet?

That happens with busy people. ...And then with gas prices where to go close and yet enjoy the adventure?

How about Arcadia!

Arcadia offers lodgings, with kitchens even, RV and camping space.. LODGINGS ARE STILL AVAILABLE.


For a day's getaway you can come and use the day use pass for only $20.00 per person from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

(That day pass includes use of our beautiful park like setting, all day hot tubbing and sunbathing, barbecue access, picnicking, and a social setting to visit with others. A real bargain! )

Time for some play - hot tubbing and socializing with other fun people. Maybe a little song and a little dance to!

Call Arcadia now ! That is telephone: 360-426-7116!


P.S. Our new Grecian pool nearing completion!

1/2 full last night, near full today!

NAC Action Alert: California: American River - May 23, 2007


Copyright 2007 by the Naturist Action Committee, which is responsible for its content. Permission is granted for the posting, forwarding or redistribution of this message, provided that it is reproduced in its entirety and without alteration.

DATE: May 23, 2007
SUBJECT: California: American River
TO: Naturists and other concerned citizens

Dear Naturist,

This is an Action Alert from the Naturist Action Committee concerning an important opportunity in the state of California.

In conjunction with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the California Department of Parks & Recreation is continuing its development of a joint General Plan / Resource Management Plan for the Auburn State Recreational Area (Auburn SRA). Naturists have already made themselves a significant part of that process, and it is essential that we continue our high level of involvement.


NAC is strongly requesting your attendance at an important public workshop. This is the second in a series of public events that will help shape the future of the Auburn SRA.

DATE: May 30, 2007
TIME: 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM PDT.
Canyon View Community Center, Foothills Room
471 Maidu Drive
Auburn, CA 95603 Google Map

NAC will have personnel at the public workshop / meeting. It's important that naturists have a significant turnout. Even if you don't intend to speak, please plan to be there.


The American River area is largely funded by the Bureau of Reclamation. Under a 1977 contract, it has been operated by California State Parks as the Auburn State Recreation Area. Generations of Californians and others have enjoyed the tradition of nude recreation along the river.

Decades ago, a large dam was planned for the American River. Preparation for the dam project included construction of a diversion tunnel to take the river's water around the dam site. To avoid the tunnel, river rafters have had to remove their craft at the Highway 49 bridge, near the confluence of the river branches, more than 3 miles upstream from the dam site.

Geologists found the dam to be sited on an unstable fault, and the project was eventually abandoned. The river channel reclamation effort at the dam site now includes plugging the diversion tunnel. Rafters will eventually be able to take the main channel. A few CA Parks officials concluded that the prospect of user conflict between rafters and naturists should be resolved in advance by banishing the naturists.

In the summer of 2006, rangers from the State of California Department of Parks and Recreation began telling park users along the American River that nudity would no longer be permitted on the river near Auburn, and that signs banning nudity would be posted in the area. The clothing-optional sites that were most threatened by the proposed prohibition were located northeast of the town of Auburn, below the confluence of the North and Middle branches of the American River and above the site of the indefinitely delayed Auburn Dam.

The Naturist Action Committee issued an Action Alert on June 10, 2006, asking naturists and others to write to California Parks officials and to attend the first workshop session in the General Plan process. The response was tremendous! Letters poured in, and naturists made up a full third of all the public participants at the initial workshop.

Naturists made their point, and the Auburn SRA Superintendent and his superiors definitely got the message. Eventually, NAC was asked, very nicely, to please turn off the flow of letters.

NAC Update 6-16-2006
NAC Update 8-3-2006 [added-Rick]

The Naturist Action Committee thanks you for your help! You absolutely made a difference in 2006. Now, it's time to sustain our momentum by attending Public Workshop #2 in 2007. It's important that you be there.


It's been a little less than a year since the first workshop, and the Naturist Action Committee has used the time wisely. NAC has continued working closely with California Parks officials. The Superintendent at the Auburn SRA knows very clearly that naturists will NOT be ignored. He has reversed the earlier plan for a ban on benign nudity, and he is now working toward viable plans to manage FOR responsible clothing-optional uses of the resource.

NAC is also working with local individuals and groups who may not be directly affiliated with major naturist or nudist organizations, but who are sincerely committed to preserving opportunities for clothing optional recreation on public land. NAC expresses its thanks to those individuals and groups.

We definitely have momentum on our side now. We must continue to press our advantage.


The Naturist Action Committee is asking you to attend the important public workshop on May 30. See the details above. This is the second of three planned public workshops. The process will result in a General Plan/Resource Management Plan for the Auburn State Recreation Area. The Plan will be developed and released jointly by California Parks and the Bureau of Reclamation.


NAC is asking ALL NATURISTS and other concerned individuals to attend, regardless of your residence. The area at issue is U.S. public land being administered as a California public park. This is a matter that affects us all.

Even if you do not intend to speak at the Public Workshop, your presence is important as support for those who will be speaking on behalf of naturists.

IF YOU SPEAK AT THE WORKSHOP It's understandable that you might be perturbed at previous attempts to exclude naturists from public lands on the American River. However, please remember that we overcame that obstacle as a result of our flood of correspondence and our disciplined performance at the previous meeting. We're winners now, and while we must remain vigilant, we should act like gracious winners at the upcoming workshop.

If you speak at the workshop, you must avoid making personal attacks based on the early confrontational approach of some CA Parks officials. We're well past that now, and we need to continue working together with officials to assure a future for naturists in the General Plan for Auburn SRA.


Additional information and links are available, along with this NAC Action Alert on the web site of the Naturist Action Committee.

Select "Alerts" and find this NAC Action Alert under Current Alerts.


The Naturist Action Committee is the volunteer nonprofit political adjunct to The Naturist Society. NAC exists to advance and protect the rights and interests of naturists throughout North America. Fighting for the clothing-optional recreational use of public land is expensive. To do its job, NAC relies entirely on the voluntary generosity of supporters like you.

After you've made your plans to attend the public meeting in Auburn on May 30, please take a moment to send a donation to:

PO Box 132
Oshkosh, WI 54903

Or call toll free (800) 886-7230 to donate by phone using your MasterCard, Visa or Discover Card. Or use your credit card to make a convenient online donation:

Thank you for choosing to make a difference.


R. Allen Baylis
Board Member
Naturist Action Committee

Naturist Action Committee (NAC) - PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Executive Dir. Bob Morton -
Board Member Allen Baylis -
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick -

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Make Wreck beach in Vancouver one of the 7 Wonders of Canada

Update: This request is now the subject of a NAC Alert dated May 23, 2007. Voting ends Friday so it is important you cast your vote to put a naturist location in the top seven. Currently, Wrech Beach, though still a part of the short list, is only garnering 1% of the vote, or just over 4,000 votes. Rick

From: Judy Williams
Sent: Friday, May 18, 2007 2:25 PM

Subject: Seven Wonders of Canada-Voting Begins May 15-25, 2007!

Dear Wreck Beach Friends:

Please re-distribute the e-mail below to all your list serves, e-mail lists, naturist friends, and acquaintances. Just having Wreck Beach on the short list of 52 CBC Wonders of Canada nominees is a tribute to naturist solidarity everywhere. Bless you all for helping protect this precious beach by voting to have it recognized as one of Canada’s seven wonders. Through such recognition, comes protection, so we urge you to please vote! We are thrilled to have made the “short list” from 1800 nominations. We have been on CBC radio with the two other beaches
running, and appeared in a prominently-featured article in 24-Hours Newspaper yesterday, and will be featured in a cross-Canada news story to promote the Seven Wonders of Canada CBC Contest Tuesday, May 22, on CBC National Television News…at 6:00 p.m. and later!

Recently the CBC Radio and Television launched a contest to find the Seven Wonders of Canada. They are searching for places which fulfill the following criteria:

1. Essential 'Canadian-ness' - historically significant, character filled, valued
2. Originality/uniqueness of the pitch and place
3. Spectacular physical site or amazing human creation
4. Ability to inspire
5. Range within the final seven - diversity of location, type of wonder

Thanks to your many passionate submissions, Wreck Beach is on the list of 52 nominees! 1800 nominations were received so we are already a winner, but what the heck? We thought we’d also try for the Seven Wonders list too!

Please vote right now to help establish Wreck Beach as an officially-recognized wonder of Canada.(You can vote for up to seven nominees but a single vote for Wreck Beach will help us most.) We are easy to find on the alphabetized list, third from the end:

Many thanks for your support!

Judy Williams
Chair - Wreck Beach Preservation Society
James Loewen,
Vice-Chair- Wreck Beach Preservation Society

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Lake Bronson Family Nudist Resort Visit

Lake Bronson has always been on my short-list of places to visit because of the stunning descriptions of the property and the relative closeness of the resort. However, until recently, Lake Bronson Nudist Resort has been somewhat of an insular and unapproachable venue. I'm ecstatic to report that the Lake Bronson of the past is NOT the Lake Bronson of the now . . . my welcome there was amongst one of the most welcoming and friendly, hassle-free visits to any nudist resort in my experience. Kudos to the staff and members of Lake Bronson towards making myself and fellow SLUGS members feel comfortable, wanted and welcome.


I arrived at the entrance off the Sultan Basin Road around 11AM, dialed in the gate code, and drove down the the resort office a few minutes later. Indeed, a nice sunny office, warm with lots of glass. A number of Bronson members were in there . . . all smiling. No frowns as an unfamiliar vehicle drove up . . . just 'Hi's and 'Welcome's as I entered the office and produced my SLUGS card for check-in. The whole process was painless, easy and non-suspicious . . . which goes a long way to making you feel trusted and part of the family. While I filled out the expected particulars form and my name was run against the Caution List I chatted with the others in the office and soon got the layout of the resort, what places a 'must-see' and most importantly . . . just how to find Ryan's supposedly refurbished cabin.

I got there early so there was not a lot of activity happening. A few people down by the lake re-grooming the shoreside. I drove on up above the lake on the north side where Randy, Lake Bronson's' President indicated the best approach to get to Ryan's place. Bronson occupies over 300 acres of northwest forested land. RV spaces and cabins niche the gravel roadsides. I parked next to the Hilltop Inn and pulled out the map flyer the office had given me.

The weather was iffy . . . sunshine spotty with our typical early season overcast and threats of rain. Not the best weather to be naked. Nonetheless, I stripped right there at the car, my thick-skin still programmed by dozens of cold-weather nude hikes. It felt good to be free of clothes.

I was the early-bird there. Bronson is reputed to have over ten miles of hiking trails and I intended to hike as much of them as possible. I opted against hiking shoes in favor of Tevas, rolled the requisite sitting towel (and a long-length teeshirt against cooling weather . . . it was threatening to rain, after all) into the side of my fanny pack. Fanny pack slung over my shoulder and the requisite Blue Floppy Hat, I set off to find Ryan and his cabin. The verbal directions I had gotten were accurate but somehow didn't gel in the mental image I had of the place. I spent some time wandering up gravel lanes this direction and whatnot before I decided to try the correct one down to the lake . . . the only place left that made any sense. I passed Ryan's cabin twice before registering Ryan's car . . . right next to the volleyball courts as I'd been told! It's a wonder I don't get lost in the wilderness more often.

Ryan's Cabin:

Ryan was running around decorating his little place in paradise with flower beds and little (well, huge) frog statues. Seems everyplace at Bronson has frog figurines . . . the club mascot and certainly a noisy denizen of the lake. Ryan's little cabin is the former (and now dilapidated) Youth Center . . . a small log structure, stripped bare on the inside and just perfect for a weekend getaway once cleaned up, insulated and decorated. Great spot as well . . . right by the lake! I expect to be invited to spend some time there, Ryan!

After being introduced to a few of the members working on the grounds . . . dang, why was I the only person naked; must be the weather . . . Ryan gave me the lowdown on the hiking trails. First and foremost, the Falls . . . an absolute must see for first time visitors.

The Waterfalls:

The trail is probably less than a mile from the end of one of the gravel perimeter roads . . . all downhill and through huge stands of canopy. The trail is somewhat improved but could use maintenance after the winter storms. Hiking shoes would have been preferred but the Tevas did just fine. Eventually you come to the head of the falls where the creek feeding them drops 85ft over to a scoured basin of boulders before shortly joining the Sultan River. The little spur takes you right up to the precipice where you look straight down. Impressive!

The trail continues switchbacking on down and eventually to the pearly green waters of the swift-flowing Sultan River. Here you are open to the skies and I enjoyed an intermittent break in the cloud cover to bask in blessedly-warm sunlight. The river is intriguing. It runs through a steep gorge which, in itself, invites exploration. More interestingly, the water is a pale green translucent . . . not from algae but from some other factor. It was also running warmer than I would have expected. I could have spent the better part of the afternoon on the banks of the Sultan.

On the way back up I met a party of SLUGs being lead on down to the falls by Ryan. Dang, why was I the only one nude? Can't they take the weather? Well, Brad was hiking nude but the rest . . .

Broken Bridge Trail and Bears:

They continued on down while I headed in the other direction for the eastern edge of the property and Broken Bridge Trail. Ryan seemed to think I would enjoy that hike . . . after he FYI'd me about bear sightings on the trail. A challenge, eh?

Broken Bridge Road is the northern developed edge of the property with new RV sites being cut off the sides of the road. At the eastern end the road passes an ancient sawmill. I was told it is still functional but doesn't appear to have been used in some time. Just past the sawmill the road tees north and quickly degenerates into a narrow, overgrowth path that young alder saplings and blackberry is quickly reclaiming. But I have thick skin and that reputation for Banged Up Shins to defend, so I pushed on in regardless of the scratches. Sometimes the hike is more important.

Eventually you pass off the property and into National Forest lands . . . and some rather stern warning signs about entering the private property I had just left. There is supposed to be a beaver pond and lodge up there but I never did find it.

The trail hooks back to the east following the creek that eventually becomes Bronson's famous waterfalls. The trail just as abruptly ends (or is so overgrown that the path is just not obvious). It was there that I spotted the fresh (and still warm) spoor of a bear . . . spoor fully an inch and a half thick! I was getting ready to head back when I heard the grunt and huff of a large animal cracking the brush in the creek and headed my direction. Um . . . no bear spray in my pack . . . time to start stepping back the way I came. I did not feel comfortable until I broke back into the openness of the first leg of the trail. I did more trail exploring, catching some tentative, fine rain misting. On the road back to the main resort I met up with some more SLUGgies . . . again, why was I the only one naked?

The Lodge and Dinner:

By 5pm the overcast was complete and the end to sunlight for the day. I drove on over to the main Lodge overlooking the south end of the lake. Activities were just beginning in there with food preparation. Downstairs I ran into Brad and shot a few games of pool . . . miserably losing. Bronson members and SLUGS started to arrive. I briefly checked out the hot tub but was disappointed that the sauna had not been turned on.

The view over the lake is great up here. From the deck we watched an osprey searching out it's own evening meal . . . probably one of those enormous bullfrogs everyone was talking about. On the tennis court below a lone figure shot basketball hoops in the nude. Most stayed inside in the comfortable 75F warmth of the lodge. We caught the news on the big screen . . . thunderstorms in the foothills for Sunday. Scenic trip needed to be rescheduled.

The spread was great; BBQd spareribs, ham, hot wings, burgers, bratwurst, corn on the cob, salad dishes, desserts. More than enough to fill the bellies of hungry people. Randy had everyone introduce themselves and then we dug in. After dinner and cleanup people started to slowly head downstairs for the music. Outside, the lake looked so serene and peaceful.

I had to leave around 9pm to other obligations but I had such a great time and have the feeling this party went on into the late evening. Thank you much to Lake Bronson for inviting us to share and enjoy your hospitality.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Oregon's SOLV Program has been good for nudism

Oregon Registered Voters only

SOLV is a volunteer-driven program in the State of Oregon that is involved in cleaning up the environment. Both AANR-NW and TNS (thru ORCOBA) participate in SOLV cleanup activities for which the nudist community receives recognition and accolades for their involvement. If you are an Oregon registered voter, please take a moment to cast support for this very effective organization!

Also, consider participating the AANR-NW's Down By The Riverside SOLV Cleanup of Rooster Rock on May 19th, or ORCOBA's Down By The Riverside SOLV Cleanup of Collins Beach on Sauvies Island on the same day. Details in the Google Calendar in the sidebar.

On June 1st, SOLV must submit 10,000 signatures to re-qualify for the Charitable Checkoff. To date we have collected 2810 and need your help!

If you have not yet signed the petition and you are a registered Oregon voter, you can send your signature with one simple e-mail! The Charitable Checkoff Commission will accept your electronic "signatures" by following these steps:

1. Create an email message to:
Note: Clicking the above link will launch your email program and automatically prefill in the To:, Subject: and Body. Don't forget to enter your name, address and county.
2. Copy this line into the subject box: I support SOLV for the Charitable Checkoff

3. Copy this section in the body of the email: To the Oregon Charitable Checkoff Commission: I the undersigned voter, request approval for SOLV to be listed in the Oregon Personal Income Tax booklet as an Oregon charity eligible to receive donations from Oregon taxpayers.

4. Add your name, residence address, and county

5. Send the email.

That's it! You've just help SOLV programs become eligible for tens of thousands of dollars over the next six years. Please consider forwarding this message to others who might help.

Visit Oregon Charitable Checkoff on the SOLV website for more information or contact Jan McGowan,, 503-844-9571 or 800-333-SOLV

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

French Naturism Ad

EJP at Gymnophiliac points out this ad for French Naturism, that he doesn't believe will remain up on Youtube for very long. I thought it was tastefully done. The model walks out onto a beach, her nudity pixelated . . . at first, seemingly censored. Or, as one commenter observes, a 'pixelated bikini'! That's the point as you see her slip out of the pixelated blur and continue on down the beach, a declaration that nudity is perfectly normal. I saved a copy to Google Video.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Scenic Hot Springs Conditions

As requested, an update on the situation at Scenic

Scenic Hot Springs has just now become easily accessible and we will soon be entertaining 'officialdom' with site plans and more permit reviews in order to start layout and construction of three new natural rock pools to replace the artificial structures that existed in the past (including the still-existing Monster Tub. After three years of negotiation the permits are in review and hopefully we feel we have addressed all the issues of concern . . . sanitation, safety, critical slopes and wetlands, and emergency access. At this stage, we await those pending permit decisions.

With the snowmelt and a new season upon us, there is little we can do short of keeping the site and surrounding areas clean, and taking prudent proactive measures to control erosion . . . until the issue of BPA culverts is solved. So expect a few clean-up parties in the next few weeks. Those who participate will get the opportunity to enjoy a soak legally as part of the deal.

Other than that, I've had my hands full handling the few problems we have had at Scenic from unwelcome visitors (of the two-legged kind). Remember that the springs are on private property and the owner (and his reps) will challenge anyone up there without permission. While we are in these sensitive permit reviews, county and state inspectors could be up there at any time (hopefully inspecting and not soaking on taxpayer time and money). The last thing we need to happen is an incident between inspectors and a drunken bunch of partiers to nix a permit! I need to know when I escort them up that I know who is on site and whether or not they are authorized.

Please respect the private nature and sensitive situation of the springs. I promise you that if the owner is successful you will have one gem of a natural hot springs to enjoy.

The rest of this report deals with my last visit to the springs to check on conditions and clean-up the site.

Friday, May 11th, 2007 Springs Visit

The pools after cleaning and starting the refill. Please, KEEP THEM CLEAN!!!!

Pool Temperatures as of
May 11th, 2007 @ 4 PM

Conditions: Clear skies, 68F @ Pools; Patches of snow on the upper trail above Main Creek crossing. FS850, BPA Road and lower trail are snow free. As predicted, some enterprising soul has chainsawed the tree blocking access to FS850.

Spring Source
East #1 (Lobster Upper): 78.3F, Flow: 18 gpm (measured)
East #2 (Lobster Lower): 58F, disconnected from feed tube Upper feed tube is redirected around pool.
West #1 (Bear): 110.3F
West #2 (Bear): 111.4F, Combined Flow: 6.8 gpm (measured)

Pool Temperatures:
Lobster Half: Inlet 77F (diverted from pool), Pool 97.9F
Bear Den Half: Inlet 109.3F, Pool 101.7F

The Lobster sources have gone cold as predicted from the increased snow melt; while the Bear sources have notched up a degree or two. Both sources show increased flow rates. Lobster, at 77F, is too cold to feed the combined pool, so has been diverted around the tub. The second fracture at the source is now active and supplying most of the colder water to Lobster. Bear is just enough to provide a pleasant soak with two different temperatures that suit the ambient weather.

Previous Lobster flow was 15gpm with the second fracture dry. The additional 3gpm is coming cold from the previously dry fracture and tempering the original spring source . . . (FlowhotTemphot + FlowcoldTempcold)/(Flowhot + Flowcold)= Tempfinal. Calculating backwards, that additional little cold flow is having an enormous mixing effect on the temperature of the original Lobster source, which is still running in the 90s! Unfortunately, the mixing is taking place where we can't easily get at it to correct this do-gooder's 'improvement'. That's what we get when someone goes messing around with the spring sources with a chisel!!!

Water Quality Without the added flow of Lobster, Bear springs is barely enough to turn over the water adequately . . . especially when someone keeps removing the small pool-bottom siphon (the green hose). Algae quickly builds up on the lower portions of the pool, which gets little turnover. The weir dams were heavily coated with a half-inch thick coating of algae that also builds up on the concrete outside of the tub under the overflows. The two halves of the tub were in bad need of some serious cleaning. I completely drained the pools, removed the pool divider and spent the next two hours scrubbing the slippery algae coating off the interior and exterior pool surfaces. The liner is showing increasing areas of wear and will probably have to be replaced sometime this soaking season.

Site Conditions There has been more earth slippage on the trail above the Bear Den sources. Step carefully around this area or preferably, take the latrine access trail. The litter problem was very heavy. I removed four 33gal trash bags of beer bottle, cans, liquor bottles, clothing, towels, food wrappers, candles and assorted other garbage from the site.

Notes The tree across FS850 has been cut up. At first I thought the Forest Service but I later found out one of the visitors took it upon himself to cut up the tree to make it easy for people. Next time, pay attention and notify me or Mike first. You need a permit to go cutting fallen trees on Forest Service property and that tree was tagged for a timber permit. I was aware of that and perfectly willing to let the tree sit until we needed access. Whomever did the cutting, I suggest you don't admit to it.

While I worked on cleaning and oiling the lock to the gate, the owners of several cars (and one motor scooter) arrived from their unauthorized visit. I didn't recognize any of them and one couple was downright obnoxious when informed that the springs are closed and on private property. I didn't even bother to ask if they'd like to volunteer and earn the right to visit. Didn't seem the type. Fortunately, I have pictures of their vehicles.

The forest service road is completely snow free and in real good shape. There is a fallen tree snag near the BPA clearcut, but easily driven around. The first hiker's bypass is also clear and in good shape.

Likewise, the BPA Road and clearcut is also snow free. The upper BPA road shows some moderate to significant erosion but is 4WD HC drivable . . . in fact, someone has recently driven up the road, though which of the volunteers with keys I don't know. Near the top immediately short of the Honeymoon Creek BPA road cut, a large boulder has come to rest in the center of the road. It can be driven around but will take two or more people to safely move this boulder out of the way.

Lower down, I cleared out the culvert grates of the Main Springs creek crossing, and of the BPA Springs. Shoring up of the basin around the intake of the culvert was necessary. Where Meadows Creek crosses the BPA road, there is heavy flow but erosion is under control.

The trail, itself, is in good shape. The water bars are doing their job. Melt runoff continues to come down Rock Alley. The snow begins just above . . . patchy but unavoidable. The snow is soft, wet and slippery . . . but will soon be gone. Most of the snow is from the switchback area to just short of the short path above the Bear Den sources . . . the result of remaining mostly in shade. The latrine bypass trail (the original and one of the historic trails) is snow free. Due to earth slippage in the route above the springs, I recommend taking this bypass trail.

As the condition report noted, the pools were in terrible shape and needed serious cleaning; which I did. There is also a lot of irresponsible partying going on up here late at night with dozens of beer bottles (Blond Ale?), a full bottle of Schnapps, a half full bottle of Jaggermeister, various articles of clothing, food wrappers, uneaten food, a half-dozen melted candles and lots of cigarette butts. The site was filthy and a lot of that garbage was in the pools, themselves. Have you ever stepped bare-footed on a bottle cap. The pool was full of bottle caps and I managed to step on one and cut my foot. So, my unauthorized friends, I have no sympathy for you! All in all, I made two "up the mountain-down the mountain" trips to drag four trash bags full of garbage away!

Used Pampers!!!! That means babies, unless you have a control problem yourself. Do not take babies up to the hot springs to soak. It is both dangerous for the child (babies have undeveloped control of body heat), and dangerous to the pool waters (babies have bowel control problems . . . which is why they wear Pampers).

A young lady's spandex top left on a rock near the top of Rock Alley

What surprises me is the amount of clothing I found discarded on the side of the trail. Are people stripping off their clothes on the way up or down? I'm all for a nude hike (especially after a hot soak), but throwing away perfectly good clothes? Come on . . . take your laundry home . . . don't leave it to rot on the mountainside!

The difficulty, of course, is controlling access by these irresponsible people. I would like to catch them in the act but I really don't have time to sit by in the evening hours. Perhaps the sources need to be secured and shut down. I know I piss a lot of visitors off by draining the pools in the late afternoon . . . at the present flow rates it takes hours to refill those pools. But I can't be up there everyday. So we're going to be looking at other alternatives.

In the coming weeks, while we wait on permit decisions, I'm thinking of setting up a clean-up party . . . with the idea of litter pickup at the gate area and alongside the BPA road and trail. This is to be a mini-cleanup so if anyone wants to join in, contact me. The bonus is enjoyment of the springs for the rest of the day after the cleanup. Contact me if you want to participate.

Goldmyer Hotsprings: Footbridge Progress

Update on new footbridge:

As of this weekend, the beams for the new footbridge are now in place! They were installing cross-ties that join and stabilize the two beams. Once that is done, they will be installing the decking, and then the handrails. Probably early June is the expected finish date for this part of the project. The north and south approaches will still need to be built, and the road crew has been staging rock at the top of the driveway.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Goldmyer Hot Springs Conditions, May 4th, 2007

From Beth for Goldmyer Hot Springs

As of May 4, 2007: It's officially spring! That means snowmelt in the mountains, and changeable road and river conditions depending on temperature and rainfall. We seem to be having very typical May weather now.... a bit warmer and showers on and off. Snow melt has increased as a result. You may, or may not, decide to wade thru the river..... be willing and able to use the upper footbridge access if the river is too deep to reasonably cross. It is not humanly possible for us to tell you how deep the river will be this time of year.

High clearance vehicles can drive all the way to the river ford. The Goldmyer property is clear of snow. High clearance vehicles might still be stopped a bit shy of the upper footbridge trailhead by snow. Waterproof hiking boots with gators should be sufficient now, rather than snowshoes. Once you start down the actual trail and into the cover of the forest canopy the snow is just patchy, and you'll drop back down below the snowline very quickly.

The road has been recently grated for most of the distance (yea!). Footbridge construction (Forest Service project) is underway at the river ford. Park up top and walk down to the river please. Completion of the footbridge is expected sometime early summer. Once the footbridge is completed, the Forest Service will close the gate at the Dingford Creek Trailhead, approximately 4 miles before the river ford/new footbridge. Once the road is gated, visitors will need a Northwest Forest Trailhead Parking Pass to park at the (new) trailhead. Consider mountain biking on up the road-trail beyond the new trailhead!

Happy 'NoPants' Day

The first Friday in May is always No Pants Day.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Vitamin D casts cancer prevention in new light

What vitamin D level would humans have if they were still living outside, in the wild, near the equator, with its attendant year-round bright sunshine? Picture the natural human as a nudist in environments south of Florida. So this article (posted in full), seems to support what we as naturists have maintained for a long time . . . that reasonable exposure to sunlight is important to our health and well-being.

This report follows a much debated report that I wrote about in this blog a year and a half ago. That report was highly critical of the UK Ministry of Health's policy recommendations to the public on sun exposure. The author of that report argued that we need more sun exposure . . . particularly those of us in the northern lattitudes . . . and even admits that nude sunbathing is actually a good thing (we all knew that anyway, didn't we?). The full, orginal 47-page report is available here.

MARTIN MITTELSTAEDT - Globe and Mail (Toronto, Ontario)

April 28, 2007

For decades, researchers have puzzled over why rich northern countries have cancer rates many times higher than those in developing countries — and many have laid the blame on dangerous pollutants spewed out by industry.

But research into vitamin D is suggesting both a plausible answer to this medical puzzle and a heretical notion: that cancers and other disorders in rich countries aren't caused mainly by pollutants but by a vitamin deficiency known to be less acute or even non-existent in poor nations.

Those trying to brand contaminants as the key factor behind cancer in the West are "looking for a bogeyman that doesn't exist," argues Reinhold Vieth, professor at the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Toronto and one of the world's top vitamin D experts. Instead, he says, the critical factor "is more likely a lack of vitamin D."

What's more, researchers are linking low vitamin D status to a host of other serious ailments, including multiple sclerosis, juvenile diabetes, influenza, osteoporosis and bone fractures among the elderly.

Not everyone is willing to jump on the vitamin D bandwagon just yet. Smoking and some pollutants, such as benzene and asbestos, irrefutably cause many cancers.

But perhaps the biggest bombshell about vitamin D's effects is about to go off. In June, U.S. researchers will announce the first direct link between cancer prevention and the sunshine vitamin. Their results are nothing short of astounding.

A four-year clinical trial involving 1,200 women found those taking the vitamin had about a 60-per-cent reduction in cancer incidence, compared with those who didn't take it, a drop so large — twice the impact on cancer attributed to smoking — it almost looks like a typographical error.

And in an era of pricey medical advances, the reduction seems even more remarkable because it was achieved with an over-the-counter supplement costing pennies a day.

One of the researchers who made the discovery, professor of medicine Robert Heaney of Creighton University in Nebraska, says vitamin D deficiency is showing up in so many illnesses besides cancer that nearly all disease figures in Canada and the U.S. will need to be re-evaluated. "We don't really know what the status of chronic disease is in the North American population," he said, "until we normalize vitamin D status."

Sunshine vitamin

For decades, vitamin D has been the Rodney Dangerfield of the supplement world. It's the vitamin most Canadians never give a second thought to because it was assumed the only thing it did was prevent childhood rickets, a debilitating bone disease. But the days of no respect could be numbered. If vitamin D deficiency becomes accepted as the major cause of cancer and other serious illnesses, it will ignite the medical equivalent of a five-alarm blaze on the Canadian health front.

For many reasons, Canadians are among the people most at risk of not having enough vitamin D. This is due to a quirk of geography, to modern lifestyles and to the country's health authorities, who have unwittingly, if with the best of intentions, played a role in creating the vitamin deficiency.

Authorities are implicated because the main way humans achieve healthy levels of vitamin D isn't through diet but through sun exposure. People make vitamin D whenever naked skin is exposed to bright sunshine. By an unfortunate coincidence, the strong sunshine able to produce vitamin D is the same ultraviolet B light that can also causes sunburns and, eventually, skin cancer.

Only brief full-body exposures to bright summer sunshine — of 10 or 15 minutes a day — are needed to make high amounts of the vitamin. But most authorities, including Health Canada, have urged a total avoidance of strong sunlight or, alternatively, heavy use of sunscreen. Both recommendations will block almost all vitamin D synthesis.

Those studying the vitamin say the hide-from-sunlight advice has amounted to the health equivalent of a foolish poker trade. Anyone practising sun avoidance has traded the benefit of a reduced risk of skin cancer — which is easy to detect and treat and seldom fatal — for an increased risk of the scary, high-body-count cancers, such as breast, prostate and colon, that appear linked to vitamin D shortages.

The sun advice has been misguided information "of just breathtaking proportions," said John Cannell, head of the Vitamin D Council, a non-profit, California-based organization.

"Fifteen hundred Americans die every year from [skin cancers]. Fifteen hundred Americans die every day from the serious cancers."

Health Canada denies its advice might be dangerous. In an e-mailed statement, it said that most people don't apply sunscreen thoroughly, leaving some skin exposed, and that people spend enough time outside without skin protection to make adequate amounts of vitamin D.

However, the Canadian Cancer Society last year quietly tweaked its recommendation to recognize that limited amounts of sun exposure are essential for vitamin D levels.

Avoiding most bright sunlight wouldn't be so serious if it weren't for a second factor: The main determinant of whether sunshine is strong enough to make vitamin D is latitude. Living in the north is bad, the south is better, and near the equator is best of all.

Canadians have drawn the short straw on the world's latitude lottery: From October to March, sunlight is too feeble for vitamin D production. During this time, our bodies draw down stores built by summer sunshine, and whatever is acquired from supplements or diet.

Government regulations require foods such as milk and margarine to have small amounts of added vitamin D to prevent rickets.

Other foods, such as salmon, naturally contain some, as does the cod liver oil once commonly given to children in the days before milk fortification. But the amounts from food are minuscule compared to what is needed for cancer prevention and what humans naturally can make in their skin.

Vitamin D levels in Canada are also being compromised by a lifestyle change. Unlike previous generations that farmed or otherwise worked outside, most people now spend little time outdoors.

One survey published in 2001 estimated office- and homebound Canadians and Americans spend 93 per cent of waking time in buildings or cars, both of which block ultraviolet light.

Consequently, by mid-winter most Canadians have depleted vitamin D status. "We're all a bit abnormal in terms of our vitamin D," said Dr. Vieth, who has tested scores of Canadians, something done with a simple blood test.

How much is enough?

Just how much vitamin D is required for optimum health is the subject of intense scientific inquiry.

Dr. Vieth has approached the matter by asking: What vitamin D level would humans have if they were still living outside, in the wild, near the equator, with its attendant year-round bright sunshine? "Picture the natural human as a nudist in environments south of Florida," he says.

He estimates humans in a state of nature probably had about 125 to 150 nanomoles/litre of vitamin D in their blood all year long — levels now achieved for only a few months a year by the minority of adult Canadians who spend a lot of time in the sun, such as lifeguards or farmers.

For the rest of the population, vitamin D levels tend to be lower, and crash in winter. In testing office workers in Toronto in winter, Dr. Vieth found the average was only about 40 nanomoles/L, or about one-quarter to one-third of what humans would have in the wild.

The avalanche of surprising research on the beneficial effects of vitamin D could affect dietary recommendations as well. Health Canada says that, in light of the findings, it intends to study whether recommended dietary levels need to be revised, although the review is likely to be years away.

A joint Canadian-U.S. health panel last studied vitamin D levels in 1997, concluding the relatively low amounts in people's blood were normal. At the time, there was speculation vitamin D had an anti-cancer effect, but more conclusive evidence has only emerged since.

"There needs to be a comprehensive review undertaken and that is planned," says Mary Bush, director general of Health Canada's office of nutrition policy and promotion.

But Ms. Bush said the government doesn't want to move hastily, out of concern that there may be unknown risks associated with taking more of the vitamin.

Those who worry about low vitamin D, however, say this stand is too conservative — that the government's caution may itself be a health hazard.

To achieve the vitamin D doses used for cancer prevention through foods, people would need to drink about three litres of milk a day, which is unrealistic.

If health authorities accept the new research, they would have to order a substantial increase in food fortification or supplement-taking to affect disease trends. As it is, the 400 IU dosage included in most multivitamins is too low to be an effective cancer fighter.

Dr. Vieth said any new recommendations will also have to reflect the racial and cultural factors connected to vitamin D. Blacks, South Asians and women who wear veils are at far higher risks of vitamin D deficiencies than are whites.

Although humans carry a lot of cultural baggage on the subject of skin hue, colour is the way nature dealt with the vagaries of high or low vitamin D production by latitude.

Those with very dark skins, whose ancestors originated in tropical, light-rich environments, have pigmentation that filters out more of the sunshine responsible for vitamin D; in northern latitudes, they need more sun exposure — often 10 times as much — to produce the same amount of the vitamin as whites.

Dr. Vieth says it is urgent to provide information about the need for extra vitamin D in Canada's growing non-white population to avoid a future of high illness rates in this group.

Researchers suspect vitamin D plays such a crucial role in diseases as unrelated as cancer and osteoporosis because the chemical originated in the early days of animal evolution as a way for cells to signal that they were being exposed to daylight.

Even though living things have evolved since then, almost all cells, even those deep in our bodies, have kept this primitive light-signalling system.

In the body, vitamin D is converted into a steroid hormone, and genes responding to it play a crucial role in fixing damaged cells and maintaining good cell health. "There is no better anti-cancer agent than activated vitamin D. I mean, it does everything you'd want," said Dr. Cannell of the Vitamin D Council.

Some may view the sunshine-vitamin story as too good to be true, particularly given that the number of previous claims of vitamin cure-alls that subsequently flopped. "The floor of modern medicine is littered with the claims of vitamins that didn't turn out," Dr. Cannell allowed.

But the big difference is that vitamin D, unlike other vitamins, is turned into a hormone, making it far more biologically active. As well, it is "operating independently in hundreds of tissues in your body," Dr. Cannell said.

Referring to Linus Pauling, the famous U.S. advocate of vitamin C use as a cure for many illnesses, he said: "Basically, Linus Pauling was right, but he was off by one letter."

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

ORCOBA/SOLV/ODFW Cleanup Report, Apr 28th, 2007

Don, from ORCOBA, reports on the success of this past Saturday's cleanup of Collins Beach on Sauvies Island (Annotated Google Map):

Thanks to everyone who came out and pitched in at our Collins Beach cleanup on Saturday! Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife agents were pleased to see the early turnout of ORCOBA members (nearly all of whom made it to the beach before Peggy and I, thanks to a parking lot called I-5). By noon, bags had been filled and an assortment of other storm debris, including building materials and Styrofoam blocks, had been removed from the beach, parking lot and wooded areas. The water level was surprisingly low, comparable to late summer conditions, and just about all of the beach area was accessible. The day turned our better than predicted, so participants were rewarded with a few hours of relaxing sunshine in which to soak.

I spoke with Deputy Larry that afternoon, and he said that his position has been funded for another year and he'll be on the island as usual this summer. Let's hope we can keep him around until his retirement; maybe even talk him into staying on an extra year or two!

For those who aren’t familiar with Larry, he has served on Sauvie Island for the last 13 years and knows it intimately. He is very supportive of ORCOBA, and the preservation of Collins as a clothing-optional beach. It would be a huge loss to not have him out there.

Columbia County was planning to eliminate the funding for Deputy Larry Weaver’s position, effective this year. A letter writing campaign and support from naturists probably was the trigger that turned the tide. Thank you to all those who wrote and called.

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