Friday, November 21, 2014

(Video) Pistol Cleaning 101

(Video) Pistol Cleaning With Jack

Jack has put together another video for us today, where he describes how to clean and maintain pistols: both revolvers and semi automatics.  I hope you are able to learn a few things or at least enjoy the video.  If you need help cleaning you rifles or shotguns, check out his cleaning guide.

A Pistol, magazine, and ammo
A Pistol, magazine, and ammo

Pistol Cleaning Video

Or you can check out the video on The Adventures With BeeGee YouTube channel.


Jack: Hey guys this is Jack with Adventures With BeeGee.  I'm just gonna go ahead and do a quick pistol cleaning course real quick. 

Jack:  So, first thing you guys are going to need is your eye pro. Never forget that. So, let's go ahead and put that on.  Second, it would be a good idea to get a firearm.  Then, go out and get yourself a little ramrod for 10 bucks.  I recommend getting the rifle, the shotgun, and the pistol one.  It's the all in one so you don’t have to go out and buy 2 kits or 3 kits.  It's good to have a little toothbrush for cleaning.  A rag or a triangle bandage.  Your favorite cleaner.  Mine happens to be CLP.  Then, some cotton swabs or cotton cloth.  So, go ahead, get your firearms, and make sure they are, oops if I can hold on to them, clear.  We check everything off camera just to make sure we don't have any accidental discharges.  Nothing in there.  Hopefully you guys can see that.  Nothing in that guy.  

Jack: So, go ahead and set that guy off to the side, and I'll start with the revolver. Most revolvers, this is as far as you need to go.  I really wouldn't recommend going further than that just because once you start getting to the timing revolvers just get real crazy.  So, get yourself a cotton swab and put some of that good juice on there.  Then go ahead and run that down the barrel.  Get it nice and clean.  Do it as needed, then go ahead, and do the same thing in each one of the chambers.  You have to make sure those guys are clean.   That guy happened to be a little dirty.  Do that on each one and then get your triangle bandage, rag, or what have you.  Go ahead and wipe this guy down really good.  Try and get every little nook and cranny.  This guy happens to be a little old so he is getting a little rust on him, which you are going to have to go ahead and take care of.  That pretty much takes care of your revolvers. 

Jack: Go ahead and get that guy out of the way and lets go ahead and do this semi auto.  There are a lot of ways to take these guys apart.  There are a lot of different versions, models.  This happens to be a TP9.  It works pretty much similar to Glocks and I think Smith & Wesson SD 9, SDV 9's.  A lot of pistols are starting to go that way.  Unfortunately, I don't have a 1911 to show you guys because there are a lot of 1911's out there and they are a little more difficult.  For sure read the manual and it should tell you how to do it.  So, first thing you are going to do is check the firearm.  Go ahead and discharge that guy.  Then take your slide off.  Not too hard.  Take the spring out and the barrel should just wiggle out.  Then I like to spray this guy down real liberally and then scrub down with my toothbrush.  Get in the little grooves.  I generally don't always have a toothbrush all the time, so I generally just use my rag.  It seems to get it pretty well.  Do both sides, the lower and the slide.  Just get in there real good.  Then, I have to take this guy.  For whatever reason, I get my springs real dirty.  Make sure to wipe that down, wipe that guy real good.  And on the exterior of the barrel.  Then get yourself some cotton.  A lot of people say it's easier to run this down the barrel when it’s in the firearm, put together.  For whatever reason I prefer doing it this way.  It's just how I like it and how I was told to do it.  So, this is how I do it.  Run that down the barrel.  Do that as many times as you need.  Go ahead and put this bad boy back together.

Jack: I know on Glocks they have problems, TP9's also or anything that uses a little rail.  They sometimes like to slip or jump off if you are not careful.  So, be real careful when you are doing that.  The last thing you want to do is break that [the little rail].  Just slide that back on and there you go. 

Jack:  All right guys, this is Jack with Adventures With BeeGee.  If you have any ideas or tips and tricks just let us know.  Thanks have a good day.

If you have any other cleaning tips go ahead share them.  Also, if you like the blog please like us on Facebook.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

How to Get Your Dog Ready to Run

Start Preparing Your Dog to Run

Now that it has finally cooled off, it’s time for BeeGee to start joining me on mountain bike rides.  I am really pumped about this and I bet she will be too.  Unfortunately, with the move from North Carolina and the heat of south Texas, I have neglected our weekly runs.  So, I have put together a small guide to help you guys get ready to run with your pups (and help me!). 
Running with your dog is fun and rewarding
Running with your dog is fun and rewarding

The Preparation

First things first, ensure your dog is healthy enough to even begin training with you, which should be done by your veterinarian.  Moreover, pets that are too old or too young shouldn’t run either.  Young dog’s bones are still developing and training should wait until they are over 6 months.  Furthermore, large and giant breeds need to wait even longer, around 18 months.

The Run

One of the most important parts of running with you dog is good leash skills.  This might be the hardest part, but training your pup to run next to you and not pull can be a huge challenge.  Also, you must teach your dog not to step every few feet not to mark to prevent frequent breaks.  A gentle tug on the leash and saying, “let’s go” works well with BeeGee.

Just like people, dogs need to slowly build up as they get in shape.  For beginners with no cardio training, I recommend just regular walks to start with.  This gets the pup ready by strengthening/toughing their pads, increasing their cardio a little, and familiarization with leash rules.  The next step will be adding short 5-minute jogs into your regular walks 2 – 3 times a week.  After a few weeks, increase the jogging time to 10 minutes.  This should provide a nice base for your dogs and maybe you.  Finally, start running 3 times a week.  BeeGee and I have started with 2-mile runs 2 to 3 times a week, but time based runs might work better.  I would start at 15 to 20 minutes per run.  Finally, add about 5 minutes per run every week.

Signs to Slow Down or Quit

Sometimes we bite off more than we can chew, don’t fully recover, or have a bad day, and our running buddies are no different.  If you start seeing any of the signs below, take a quick stop, wait for your dog to recover, and then continue again at a slower pace.  If the signs persist, it’s time to call it quits and walk on home. 

Here are a few signs to look for:
  • Running behind you instead of at your side or slightly ahead
  • Ears back
  • Tongue hanging out and to the side
  • Corners of the mouth pulled back
  • Lays down or quits running
  • Mega pants and difficulty breathing

After the Run

After you finish up your awesome run and cool down, it’s pretty important to check out your dog’s paws.  Unfortunately, our dogs can’t talk and let us know their issues, so we have to give them a once over.  Start by checking for cuts, scratches, and worn down pads on their paws.  Then examine their coats for burrs, ticks, or any other material that could be matted in.  Finally, watch your dog’s gait (aka their walk) to see if they are limping.   

Lessons Learned and Tips

  • Make sure to take a few bags for bathroom clean ups
  • Know where a trash can is on the route (I've spent more than a few miles running with a full bag because of this)
  • Take water for you and your dog if you plan on running in the heat or over 3 miles
  • No food for 1 hour before and 1 hour after to prevent bloating

at dog agility training
BeeGee working on her sprints!

Final Thoughts

It is great that you want to get out there and run or bike with your pup.  I hope this short guide has helped you decide to start training with your dog because it’s so much more fun running with someone else.  Especially man’s best friend!

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Monday, November 17, 2014

Gear Review: High Sierra Wahoo Hydration Pack

High Sierra Wahoo Hydration Pack Review

Background and design:

When you're on the trail for the day, two of the last things you want to worry about are having enough space to pack what you need and having to find a place to refill your dihydrogen monoxide stock.
Available through Amazon here , this was another Woot! purchase for me. I picked this bag out because I was looking for a larger reservoir after having to stop too frequently to refill my much smaller CamelBak pouch when adventuring.
The bag itself is rated at 14 Liters and can hold a 2 Liter water reservoir. It's not overly large at 18.25"x 9.25"x 7" and weighs in at just under 2 pounds without the bladder.

A view of the pack with the waist band spread
The Wahoo in all of its awesome

One of the many great features of this pack is the pockets on both sides of the waistband, shown above. The pockets are large enough to hold an energy bar or other small items, and the padding on the inside of the waistband is thick enough to keep what you have stored from poking you too much. In addition to the waistband there is also a chest strap to keep your load from shifting around.

The reservoir with the tube insulator in place
The 2 liter reservoir
I am a fan of the High Sierra reservoir design; the top opens all of the way for easy filling and cleaning. And this model comes with a tube insulator, which I have found makes a huge difference, that keeps you from having to suffer through a full tube's worth of sun-heated water.

A carabiner, a High Sierra retainer, and two hook and loop retention places for reservoirs
High Sierra's reservoir retention methods

Another fantastic feature of this pack is the multiple methods to hang your reservoir. It includes a hook, carabiner, and two hook-and-loop methods to secure your water pouch making it compatible with another brand of water reservoir if you are so inclined.

your guess is as good as mine, but it's great to have...
Tire pump slot?
This pack is so chock full of features, I don't even know what this slot is for... let me know in the comments. I've just been using it to hold my writing pens while I ride.

An amply sized front pocket for keys and a wallet
Front pocket
In addition to the nicely sized main compartment there is a front pocket that fits most, if not all, of your everyday-carry accessories easily. And the lanyard hook makes it easy to get to your keys in a hurry.

A nice spot to put a red blinking flasher when adventuring
A spot for a flasher

While I plan to use this pack plenty on short hikes, it is clear that it was made with biking in mind. The above pictured leather strap is perfectly placed to clip on a red flasher for riding at night.

The Wahoo has a slot that comfortably holds a bicycle helmet
Doing what it does best

The most attractive feature by far about this bag to me was that it is designed to hold a standard sized helmet without losing any of its functionality as a backpack and hydration pack. The helmet is held steady in place by adjustable clips, and the compartment can be compressed when not in use.

The Brass of it:

Pros- Bike friendly with a large hydration bladder and a place to stow your helmet when it's not on your head.

Cons- I'll report back as soon as I come across any.


If you find yourself looking for a bike friendly adventure bag, you'll be hard pressed to find better than the Wahoo. Its many features and smaller size make it the perfect companion for day hikes and bikes combined. The 2 Liter hydration bladder provides enough water to keep you going through the warmest of those South Texas days and the added feature of having a place to put your helmet instead of leaving it with your bike makes it all the better.

Do you have a favorite adventure bag? Let us know in the comments.

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Friday, November 14, 2014

Fredericksburg Get-Away – Part 2

Our Trip to Fredericksburg, Texas Part 2

This is the second part of our trip report to Fredericksburg, Texas.  You can see the first part of the trip here.

After waking up from our nap, Jarrett and I went to August E’s, a restaurant specializing in what it describes as “Nouveau Texas Cuisine.”  I am not sure how to describe what the menu consists of other than it involves seasonal ingredients.  Jarrett knows I am not an adventurous person when it comes to food, but he is, so this was the perfect place for him to make reservations at.  I will say I had the most delicious, softest, juiciest, and best steak I have ever had.  Jarrett had the nilgai, which is the largest Asian antelope, and seemed to enjoy it very much.  The waitress asked if we were celebrating anything, and when we told her it was my birthday, they gave me a delicious custard for desert, on the house.  The waitress also took the time to take a picture of us.  It was the perfect romantic dinner, the kind you see in the movies.  Leave it to Jarrett to pull off something like that.
Us At August E's

On Sunday morning, we woke up very early, but Jarrett’s brunch reservations weren’t until 11:30 a.m.  We struggled to find something to do.  There doesn’t seem to be very much open on early Sunday mornings in Fredericksburg.  However, the Amish Market opened early, so we visited it before brunch.  We had actually tried to visit it twice on Saturday, but both times it was closed.  All of the store’s products are Amish-made, and they include jams, butters, cheeses, etc.  I must admit I was not particularly interested in these products.  My eyes and all of my attention were drawn to the fabulous wooden furniture that is for sale at the back of the store. 

The attendant explained to us that if we did not find a piece of furniture we liked, we could ask for a particular object and the Amish could very possibly build it for us.  They feature genius pieces such as a toddler feeding seat, which can be turned into a rocker OR a desk.  Still, I did not grasp the level of their creativity though until I found myself looking at a beautiful full-length mirror.  I was almost drooling as I pictured this piece in our bedroom.  The attendant noticed this and then revealed to me that the mirror is also a large jewelry box.  It is the perfect place to hide your jewels from break-ins.  She then proceeded to showing us another full-length mirror, only this one had been modified to conceal weapons.  If we already had a house to live in, I’m sure we would have left empty bank accounts.  Nevertheless, we made sure to take note of the fact that they deliver anywhere in Texas, so I’m sure we will return to the Amish Market in the future. 

Linda at the Farm Haus Shop

Finally, we had brunch at the Farm Haus Bistro, a romantic restaurant offering fabulous Eggs Benedict and other brunch musts such as mimosas.  There is a beautiful garden behind the bistro, and people visiting Fredericksburg can also rent cottages there.  It was the perfect place to eat at before heading back to South Texas. 

Ready to check out Fredericksburg, then let us know?  Also, if you like the blog, please follow us on Facebook.

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Fredericksburg Get-Away – Part 1

Our Trip to Fredericksburg, Texas

After multiple technical difficulties, I can finally post about our Halloween get-away.  Jarrett planned a trip to a surprise destination to celebrate my birthday that weekend.  On Halloween evening, we headed out to historic Fredericksburg, a small town with a rich German history just west of Austin and San Antonio.  We arrived at Metzger Sunday House, a bed & breakfast originally built by the Metzger family towards the end of the 19th Century.  The Metzgers were farmers living far from town, so they built this small home in Fredericksburg to allow them to do their shopping on Saturdays and go to church on Sundays.  Sunday Houses were actually so common in Fredericksburg that the town now boasts an abundance of similar bed & breakfasts.

A small B&B located in Fredericksburg, Texas
The Metzger Sunday House. A nice little B&B

Arriving at the Metzger house was like taking a step back in time.  It has historical furniture which you are actually expected to use (unlike in many museums, where you can’t even touch the furniture), but with modern accommodations.  So, you can take your step back in time without having to deal with the inconveniences of that time.  I was very grateful of these accommodations the next morning.  Fredericksburg had temperatures in the 40s at night.  According to Jarrett, that night I, being accustomed to 90-degree weather, was curled up in a pretty tight little ball trying to conserve what little heat I could produce. He got up at when he saw this and turned on the heater.

2 signs explaining the Metzger family name
Inside the Metzger House and 2 signs explaining the Metzger family name

That morning, Jarrett and I woke up starving, so we headed out to the Old German Bakery & Restaurant. Fortunately, the Metzger Sunday House is also conveniently located just a block away from the Historic District, where the Old German Bakery is, so we were able to enjoy our delicious German pancakes in no time.  We really recommend this place.  Although it is packed, if you’re willing to share a table with strangers, you can be accommodated quickly, and the service is great.  Not really knowing our German food, Jarrett and I were about to order two German pancakes each, but fortunately our waitress explained to us how big they were.  She was right.  We were full after just eating one of those pancakes, but that didn’t keep us from buying some delicious freshly-made ├ęclairs to snack on later on. 
located on the main strip in Fredericksburg, Texas
The Old German Bakery located on the main strip

After coming back from breakfast, I hung out in the front porch of the house, which features a swing and comfortable seats.  It was refreshing to peacefully sit out-doors for a bit, before Kay Kay from Majesty Tours, picked us up to begin our activity for the day – wine tasting.  We visited four vineyards. 

Linda enjoying the weather while sitting on the front porch
Linda enjoying the weather while sitting on the front porch

First we visited Becker Vineyards, which are relatively new, yet seem to follow the classic vineyard traditions.  I’m sure if you’re an experienced wine-taster, this is the place you want to visit.  They mostly grow their own grapes (as opposed to most others, which import them from Lubbock).  As we were to do in the next three vineyards, we tasted six different wines before being taken on a tour where we were shown the process of making Becker’s wines.  We finished our visit to Becker’s vineyards with an outdoors lunch in a beautiful long porch literally right next to a vineyard.

Look at all the wine barrels stacked
Inside Becker Vinyard.  Look at all the wine barrels stacked

Next we visited a vineyard with an image completely opposite to that of Becker’s vineyards – Fat Ass.  Fredericksburg’s newest winery focuses on making wine enjoyable and understandable to wine newbies, such as Jarrett and me.  Most of their wines are on the sweet side.  Their peach wine tends to be the most popular.  If you have the chance to visit Fat Ass, then make sure to get a bottle of that peach wine because sometimes they run out of it. 

One of the youngest wineries in Fredericksburg
Fat Ass Winery.  One of the youngest wineries in Fredericksburg

We followed by visiting Hilmy Cellars, which is more for those people who like dry wines.   The place also features delicious food you can order and eat in their beautiful porch.  It’s a nice, intimate winery.  I think it’d be a great place for a date. 

The entrance is mahogany and weighs over 500 pounds
Hilmy Cellars.  The entrance is mahogany and weighs over 500 pounds

Finally, we finished with 4.0 Cellars, where you can choose the wines you will taste based on your preferences.  For example, we like sweet wines, so we chose the sweet wine menu and tasted six different sweet wines.  Our assistant there was very informative yet approachable at the same time.  After chatting with her and another couple on the tour with us, we proceeded to looking at the cheese and chocolate, which you can add to your tour ticket.  We made sure to leave with an excellent Gouda cheese. 

3 wineries and artisan foods all  rolled into one place
4.0 Cellars:  3 wineries and artisan foods all  rolled into one place

At the end of the wine tasting tour, Kay Kay drove us back to the Metzger house, where Jarrett and I properly proceeded to eating our delicious ├ęclairs and taking a nap before dinner. 

What have your experiences been in Fredericksburg ?  Also, if you like the blog, please follow us on Facebook.

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Monday, November 10, 2014

Book Review: Easy Hiking Recipes

A Book Review Covering Easy Hiking Recipes

I hope you all can forgive me for all the book reports because I still have a few more in the works.  I’ve had various types of appointments recently preventing me from getting outside so reading about adventures is the best I can do.  Today’s book review will be over Easy Hiking Recipes: Simple Meal Ideas for Day Hikes and Other Outdoor Adventures.  This book is full of ideas to fuel your outdoors experiences.

Some Background Info

Easy Hiking Recipes: Simple meal ideas for day hikes and other outdoor adventures is a 136-page book written by Tiffany Picard.  Picard is an avid hiker, recipe lover, and rock climber.  If you would like to learn more about Picard and her recipes, you can check out her website:  Easy Hiking Recipes is available in eBook and paperback and I purchased the eBook version.  Lastly, this book covers a ton of recipe Picard recommends taking on your outdoor adventures.   

I was looking for a good cookbook to increase my trail recipe knowledge.  For the most part, I have a very limited menu and don’t want to commit myself to dehydrating my own food, so I have been on the hunt for easy, tasty meals.  As always, I was able to get this eBook free (on sale).  Currently, the eBook version cost $2.99 and the paperback is $6.29

What I like

I always like a book with good organization, which is probably because I always feel like I’m so disorganized constantly.  Easy Hiking Recipes is broken into categories and each recipe is clearly labeled.  Plus, in the eBook version, each recipe is clickable in the table of contents.  Another, great aspect of this book is that Picard included numerous options for each recipe to create even more variety.  Finally, all the recipes are high quality and sound tasty, and are frequently higher quality than the food I cook at home.

The Not So Good

As with even the greatest books, there are always a few flaws, and Easy Hiking Recipe has a few.  While for some folks the flaws I have found probably aren’t an issue.  The first issue for me is that most of Picard’s recipes take more time to prep than I like.  This might not be an issue for everyone, but I am a bit of a minimalist and like quick.  In addition, most of the recipes have to be prepared at home and only eaten on the trail.  I don’t like to spend a lot of time cooking on the trails, but a little time sitting and making food is a nice break from walking.  Moreover, many of the recipes will not last over a day making this book more suited to day hiking.  Finally, the recipes add extra gear (aka extra space and weight) to protect the food (Tupperware), to keep it cool (small lunch box), or keeping the food warm (thermos).

Final Thoughts

This book has some very good recipes and a few can be used for backpacking; however, this book is most valuable for day hiking.  I would highly recommend this recipe book to anyone that requires high quality food even on their hikes.  If you plan to backpack or do multi-day hikes, I would look for another recipe source. 

Where do you get recipes for backpacking or hiking? If you like the blog, go ahead and follow us on Facebook.

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Friday, November 7, 2014

Book Review: Backpacking: The Ultimate Guide

A Book Review Covering Backpacking: The Ultimate Guide

Today I am going to do a book review covering Backpacking: The Ultimate Guide to Getting Started on your First Backpacking Trip. This book was a pretty short and quick read. Plus, the book can provide some excellent knowledge to beginners and their quest to improve your adventure skills. If you want to see even more book reviews, you can check out all our past book reviews here.

Backpacking: The Ultimate Guide

The Background

Backpacking: The Ultimate Guide to Getting Started on your First Backpacking Trip is approximately 36-page book written by Timothy S. Morris. Morris is a self-publisher and has a few other books covering prepper topics. The Ultimate Guide is available in eBook and paperback and I have the eBook version. Finally, Morris’s goal was to cover all the basic fundamentals of backpacking.

I purchased it to see if there was anything that could be useful in my future adventures. I constantly strive to increase my knowledge and skill set. Plus, I was able to grab it while it was available for free (I love a bargain). For everyone who missed the deal, the eBook is available for $2.99 and the paperback for $8.63. 

The Good Stuff

I highly recommend this guidebook to anyone who is new to backpacking or need a place to start. Moreover, Morris appears to have experience backpacking and everything I read seemed like solid advice. In addition, every basic concept needed to backpack was touched. The content itself is an easy read and pretty entertaining (for a backpacking guide book at least). I was able to breeze right through the book without getting bored. Finally, there is a good checklist at the end in an appendix. This will help the beginners or experienced backpackers determine a good packing list and will ensure all that gear makes it out to the trail. 

The Not So Good

While I have mostly praise for Backpacking: The Ultimate Guide, there are a few issues. The first being the title is misleading. This is hardly the ultimate guide because the book itself is so short. Although almost every topic is covered, there isn’t always a great amount of detail available. An example of this is in the “Choosing the Perfect Pack” section. Morris discusses the different kinds of packs on the market and basic guidelines to load a pack, but provides no information on how to tighten a pack so it will fit on the user comfortably. Therefore, other books or sources will be needed to learn about more in depth about subjects; however, this isn’t a huge issue because everyone should continue their quest for knowledge into more specific topics. 

Final Thoughts

If you are beginner or want to get in on backpacking, than this book will set you on the right path. It’s an easy read and has the information you need to get started. Plus, if you can get the eBook on sale, go ahead and pick it up! However, the normal price is a little step for only 36ish pages, but I feel it is worth the price as a starting point.

What outdoor books are on your fall reading list? If you like the blog, go ahead and follow us on Facebook.

Jarrett Morgan
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