Archive for October, 2010

Fun Food Fridays: Breakfast Burritos

This recipe comes from the eGuide ‘Camp Cooking with Joanne Fitterer’. This title will be released from the vault on November 22, 2010. It is an exclusive and can ONLY be found here. But, from now through November 22nd, it is available at a 25% discount. The eGuide features 26 must-have camping recipes. Get it now for just $1.99!

breakfast burrito


  • 1 pound ground spicy pork sausage
  • 6 eggs
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ½ cup chunky salsa
  • ½ cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 6 burrito size flour tortillas

In a medium sized skillet cook the pork sausage until no pink remains. Be sure to break the sausage into chunks as it is cooking. When the sausage is done, drain if needed, and then set aside. A plastic bowl covered with foil should keep the sausage warm.

In a bowl, combine the eggs and milk and mix well.

In the skillet, cook the eggs-milk mixture to make scrambled eggs.

Warm the tortillas. Then place 1/6 of cooked sausage and 1/6 of cooked eggs on center of tortilla. Top with salsa and sprinkle of cheddar cheese. Fold into burrito. Serve with additional salsa as desired.

Man! I wish I had had some of these on my Colorado River Kayaking trip. It would have been WAY better than freeze dried eggs.

‘Camp Cooking with JoJoanne Fittereranne Fitterer’ is a 22 page eGuide filled with great camp recipes and menus. You won’t be able to find Joanne’s camp cookbook anywhere else- it’s an exclusive. Pre-order your copy today!

Set Your Hook

Fall Fishing For Walleye

Walleye illustration

Walleye are considered one of the finest tasting fish available. The meat is white, flaky and has a very mild flavor. So, this week’s Set Your Hook article gives you some general fishing techniques for catching walleye.

Do you know where to find walleye in your area? Are you looking for a lake where you can fish from shore or go out in the boat? Find lakes, rivers and streams on

Walleye Description

Walleye are known by their yellow-olive back with a brassy cast. The sides are brassy-yellow with dark mottling, and the belly is white; there is a dark spot at the rear of the spiny dorsal fin. The eyes of a walleye are opaque-silver in color. The fish have moderate canine-like teeth. They range in length from 12 to 29 inches and can weigh between 10 oz. and 12 pounds or greater.


Walleye Location & Habitat

Walleye are a bottom oriented fish, due to their sensitivity to light, preferring to stay in deep water during the day, moving to shallow waters during the night. The walleye prefers moderately deep lakes with gravel, rock or sandy bottoms. It is found primarily in cold water lakes but has proven to survive in some warmer water impoundments. They spawn in spring, in relatively shallow water, over clean gravel or rocky bottoms.

There are eight lakes in Arizona that have walleye, but you can only eat the walleye from 6 of them (mercury issues!) Before you consume ANY fish, be sure to check your local Game & Fish to see if there are any restrictions.

Walleye’s Favorite Foods

Walleye will eat virtually anything they can catch and get in their mouths. They prefer small fish and will eat crayfish, worms and insects.

Angling For Walleye

Because of light-sensitive eyes, walleyes feed more actively early in the morning, late in the evening, or at night. Effective lures and baits include, minnows, night crawlers, jigs, crankbaits, spoons, small spinner baits, and minnow imitating plugs, as well as plastic worms and grubs. (Be sure you can fish with live bait in the lake!)

Fall Fishing For Walleye


This fish can be somewhat wary and prefer the safety of deeper, darker water. Try fishing for walleye from sundown to midnight, particularly during the heat of summer.

Fall Fishing For Walleye

Top Baits: Jigs, crankbaits and spoons. Fish shallow to moderate depths in the mornings and evenings. As the sun rises, move deeper and use small spoons or jigs.

Pitch Your Tent: Tent Tips

Ground Cloths

When ESP Boss was doing research for our new back-packing tent, he read a lot of online reviews. On of the things that the reviewers said that made a huge impact on him was to buy the matching footprint (or ground cloth) for our tent.

And boy was I ever glad he did!

Now, when you’re buying a tent, you want to get a tent that has a waterproof floor. But even WITH a waterproof floor, you should use a ground cloth beneath your tent. (You should always use a ground cloth beneath the tent, no matter when or where you go camping!)

The ground cloth serves two purposes: it protects the floor of your tent from getting torn by rocks and debris below the tent, and the second purpose is to keep moisture from seeping up from the ground into your tent.

Ground Cloth Tips

If you DON’T have a waterproof tent floor:

  • Get a ground cloth that is the same size or a few inches smaller than your tent floor. That way, rain water won’t get between the two layers as easily.
  • Purchase a ground cloth that’s made for your tent’s size. If you can’t cut one to size from an old tarp.
  • It the ground cloth is too large, fold the edges UNDER to make it smaller. You want to fold the edges under or else rain will puddle under the tent floor.
Backpacking Tent

You can't SEE the ground cloth, but trust me: It's there!

The ground cloth for our backpacking tent is exactly the same size as the tent. Both the tent floor and the ground cloth are waterproof.

If you DO have a waterproof tent floor:

  • Consider using a tarp that extends out in front of the tent door a few feet. That makes it a perfect “porch” for your tent where you can take off your shoes.
  • Use a ground cloth that will allow water to pass through it. That way, the water won’t puddle under the tent!
Ground Cloth Car Camping Tent

See my shoes in the corner? There's plenty of room for me to take them off outside so I don't bring extra dirt into the tent!

But, for my car-camping tent, I personally prefer a larger, non-waterproof ground cloth. I like it because it traps the cushions the tent floor from pokey things, it allows water to run through and away, and because I have about three feet of ground cloth extending out from the main zippered door.

Readers Weigh In:

  • What’s your take on ground cloths? Do you like them the same size as the tent or larger than the tent?
  • Have you ever been camping without a ground cloth and wished you had one?

Find Your Geocache

10 Mistakes New Cachers Make & How To Avoid Them

1. Thinking GPS units are 100% accurate

They’re not! A GPS will get you close, but you’ll never stand right on top of a cache. And different units will be off by different amounts.

Tip: Expand your search area

Magnetic Cache Container

This was the first magnetic cache container we'd ever found. For people used to finding ammo cans in the woods, it took some time to readjust our thinking.

2. Hides are always on the ground.

Nope! People use string or wire to put caches on a branch and magnets to hide it under benches.

Tip: Look high AND low.

3. The cache will stand out in some way.

A lot of caches do. Especially larger caches in the forest. But not all caches do stand out. Some are so well hidden they’re used as a TOOL by cachers to flip over rocks and sticks.

Tip: Expand your thoughts about what a cache can and cannot look like.

4. Not reading the cache page carefully.

The cache page is there to help you with hints. Even the most careful (and evil) cache owner leaves digital hints in the cache description.

Tip: Read the entire cache page, including the hint, carefully.

5. Digging.

It’s against the rules to require digging to find a cache. You’re not mining for gold so leave the shovel at home!

Tip: But that doesn’t mean that they aren’t underground! I’ve found two that required me lifting something (a lid, a rock, and a cleverly disguised root) to find the cache below ground level.

6. Not double checking the coordinates of the cache.

Especially when you are manually entering the coordinates into your GPS! I’ve made the mistake of entering the coordinates of the PARKING area as the cache and then having to return to the truck to look up the real coordinates.

Tip: Enter the coordinates into the GPS and then check it for accuracy.

7. Not noticing the NAME of the cache.

Sometimes the name of the cache is more helpful than the hint.

Little Job cache

The name of the cache was "Little Job" but I kept looking under rocks in the stream!

Tip: A lot of times, you can see evidence that the name is important by reading the logs of the cache.

8. Paying too much attention to what other cachers have said in their logs!

Go off what the cache owner says FIRST since various cachers will approach a cache from different directions.

Tip: Look for clues, but don’t take logs as gospel. Some cachers will be misleading in their logs on purpose!

9. Making the terrain harder than it should be.

A terrain of 1.5 and you’re fighting your way through a bush? Climbing a rock? Climbing down a cliff?

Tip: If the terrain seems a lot more difficult than listed, try approaching from a different direction. A lot of times, you’ll find a clearly marked path!

10. Not having the right tools.

As we gain more experience as geocachers, we all develop our go-to geocaching tool kit.

Tip: Read the article Geocaching Supplies Checklist for hints.

Readers Weigh In:

  • What are some mistakes you made when you were new to geocaching?
  • What advice can you offer newbies about the game?

Adventure Trip: Kayaking The Colorado River

If you’ve been following The Outdoor Princess blogs these past weeks then you know that ESP Boss & I had been planning a trip to kayaking the Colorado River from Hoover Dam to Willow Beach. It’s a total trip of about 13 miles, goes past 3 hot springs, 2 sets of rapids, and is the perfect place to see Rocky Mountain Sheep.

We started our trip early on Sunday October 18. In order to kayak this section of the river, you HAVE to be launched by an outfitter and have the proper permits. That’s because of security measures since we’re so close to the dam.

Water Flow

The floating rope bows out more when more water is released from the dam.

We launched about 9:00 in the morning. There was water being released from the dam and the outfitter warned us that the river could rise as much as TEN FEET in as little as an hour. Boy was I glad to know that ESP Boss had brought some rope so we could tie up the kayaks! I hadn’t even THOUGHT of bringing rope to tie up the yaks; I just figured we’d be able to pull them out of the water like we do at a lake.

Our first stop was a sauna cave. This was a man-made tunnel that goes back into the canyon wall. There’s a hot spring the bubbles up about 3/4 of the way back that heats the cave to a “balmy” 140.

sauna cave

That water was knee deep at the entrance was bath-water warm!

Next stop was Gold Strike Canyon. Here’s we got out to hike up the canyon to the hot springs AND to lay down some footage of our adventure. It’s currently in post-production but will be finished soon so I can show you more of the trip.

Gold Strike Canyon

Some pools of water were too hot to put a foot in let alone SIT in!

By the time we got back into the kayaks, the rapids just outside the mouth of Gold Strike Canyon were running. More water was being released from the dam so the river flow was higher (a LOT higher) and the rapids were very noisy.

Neither ESP Boss or I had really ever kayaked rapids before. What an adrenaline rush! Thankfully, we made it through the rapids without any problems; dry and upright!

From the first set of rapids, we headed to Boy Scout Canyon for more hot springs. But, since it was starting to get really cloudy (the whole day was overcast) and we could hear thunder moving closer, we hurried on towards our pre-planned camping spot near Arizona Hot Springs.

Boy Scout Canyon

It was a lot of fun splashing through the warm hot-spring-fed stream on the canyon floor.

The only problem? Arizona Hot Springs is just on the other side of Ringbolt Rapids. These rapids made the first set (never did find out their name!) seem like NOTHING. And, we could see a TON of people camping there. So we skirted the rapids and camped at one beach upriver from Arizona Hot Springs.

Want to hear about our camp? Check out the article on called Camp Setup Order of Priorities.

The next morning, we hiked over a couple of ridges to Arizona Hot Springs. You’re going to have to see this on film to believe it. Fantastic!

Arizona Hot Springs

I'm just about ready to climb that slippery rock to get to the next pool of hot water.

But, a word of caution about the hot springs. Most people wear clothes or bathing suits, but we did encounter a couple of people who were, how should I put it? Naked! Yep, apparently it’s not all that uncommon to run into people enjoying hot springs in their birthday suits. You’ve been warned!

After our dip in the hot springs, we headed back to camp to break camp and head down the river. We got to Willow Beach about 4:00 in the afternoon.

Now, you might be asking how we had heard about this trip. We found it in the book, Paddling Arizona by Tyler Williams. (That’s an affiliate link.) The only thing is that the information about this trip was kind of light. So, we’re working on a new eGuide that will cover EVERYTHING you need to know about this trip, including stuff to watch for (side canyons, hot springs, and the catwalk), GPS coordinates, photos and more.

Paddling Arizona

This is a good all-around refrence to kayking in Arizona.

Fun Food Fridays: Hush Puppies

For me, hush puppies are either a must-have or a can’t-stand and there is NO in between. This recipe is quick and simple with no frills. Let me know what you think!


  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 cup self-rising flour
  • 1 cup self-rising cornmeal
  • 1 quart oil for frying

In a medium bowl, mix together eggs, sugar, and onion. Blend in flour and cornmeal.

Heat 2 inches of oil to 365 degrees F. Drop batter by rounded teaspoonfuls in hot oil, and fry until golden brown. Cook in small batches to maintain oil temperature. Drain briefly on paper towels. Serve hot with Beer Battered Catfish.

Set Your Hook

Cleaning Catfish

Unlike trout and most pan fish, you can’t really use the super easy 4 Step Fish Cleaning Process.

Because catfish have no scales, you usually remove the skin when you’re cleaning them. As I discovered with The Queen Mother’s Cataract Lake catfish, removing the skin is easier said than done.

(Take my word for it on THAT one!)

After trying to ‘intelligently’ write up the process, I found a great 5-step process from Iowa Department of Natural Resources that I’ll share with you. (The pictures are theirs as well!)

Materials needed: a sharp knife, pliers, fillet glove, and firm surface.

Step 1. Grip the head tightly with the pectoral fins tucked between the fingers. Slit the skin along the backbone from just behind the head to the dorsal fin. Cut the skin on either side of the dorsal fin.

Catfish cleaning Step 1

Step 2. With a firm hold on the head, grasp the skin with the pliers and pull toward the tail fin to remove.

Catfish cleaning Step 2

Step 3. Grasp the head with one hand and the body with the other. Bend the head downward to break the backbone. Remove the head.

Catfish cleaning Step 3

Step 4. Slit the belly and remove the internal organs.

Catfish cleaning Step 4

Step 5. (Optional) Cut along both sides of the dorsal and anal fins and use the pliers to remove.

Catfish Cleaning step 5

Readers Weigh In:

  • Is this how YOU clean catfish?
  • Do you have a better/easier way to get catfish ready to cook?

Pitch Your Tent: Camp Setup

Camp Setup Order of Priorities

Remember how last week I said that we weren’t expecting rain for our Black Canyon kayaking trip until Monday afternoon? Yeah, well the rain showed up early!

But, thankfully, ESP Boss is a super-duper camp-setter-upper. And, he doesn’t listen to his daughter when she’s saying (over and over)

“Pops! I’m SOOOOO hungry. You never feed me!”

When we finally found a reasonable beach, the very first thing we did was to set up the tent. As you can see, the beach was far from level and that was the ONLY spot that we felt was far enough away from the river AND was big enough to pitch the tent.

Camp Composite

Our tent is a back-packing tent and the rain fly is optional; you don’t have to put it on the tent to keep the bugs out. It was hot and muggy so I didn’t really WANT to put it on, but the clouds kept building and I could hear thunder rumbling in the distance.

Did I mention ESP Boss is an EXTRA super-duper camp-setter-upper?

By the time the tent was fully set up WITH the rain fly secured, and loaded with all our stuff, it was drizzling. By the time we were done with dinner. It was raining. By the time the dishes were put away and the kayaks unloaded it was POURING.

I don’t have any photos of the storm but let’s just say the rain was coming down in sheets. We developed a waterfall on the west side of camp and the gully we were camped next to started running.

We sat out as long as we could with a rain poncho over our knees and wearing our rain gear. But watching the rain when the rain is also dripping off your nose just isn’t as much fun as watching it through a window!

But us? We were able to crawl into a warm, dry tent!

Moral of the story?

Set up the tent FIRST! Load it with your sleeping stuff, even if you don’t roll out the sleeping bags. Then have dinner.

Readers Weigh In:

  • Do you have any tips for setting up camp?
  • What do you always do first?

Find Your Geocache

Ghost Love: Finding A Virtual Geocache

Way back in June, I wrote an article about non-traditional geocaches. The type of cache where it isn’t just a box of swag hidden in the woods.

Virtual cache icon

And I had mentioned, under virtual caches:

I’ve run into a few virtual caches but I never participated — I wasn’t sure what the ghostie meant and it made me nervous!

Then, blog reader Don_J left the comment: “Don’t be afraid of the Ghost.”

Well, Don_J, I took your advice and went after my first ever virtual geocache.

There’s only one geocache (virtual or otherwise) along the Black Canyon stretch of the Colorado River. Before I left, I used’s map feature to locate the cache: GC69E0 ‘Tale of Two Signs’. Since I’d never gone after a virtual before, I was careful to not only PRINT the cache description, but also to put it in an accessible spot in my kayak.

Map of 'Tale of Two Signs'

I think the hardest part of this particular “find” wasn’t so much the kayak OR having the GPS in the kayak (I’ve found caches with my kayak before) but that there was a current. It made it really difficult to figure out just how quickly I was moving and to plan when I should get my camera ready to snap the “proof” photo.

Geocache sign

I emailed a better pic of the sign to the cache owner for proof I had found the cache. But I'm posting THIS photo to keep everything spoiler free!

But that’s why I take ESP Boss with me! I was paddling and watching the GPS and he was about 30 feet down river from me watching for the clue. It was a good thing too! If I had gone strictly from the coordinates, I would have missed snapping photos of the signs.

Sign from river

The current made it tough to get a good photo for "proof" for this cache. That little white dot? Yeah, that's the sign!

As it stands, ESP Boss and I both got our first ever virtual geocache. Don_J, you were right! And I’m not afraid of the Ghost any longer.

Readers Weigh In:

  • What do you like best about virtual caches?
  • What’s your best caching story involving a virtual? (Or waymark!)

Kayaking The Black Canyon

ESP Boss & I JUST got back from our weekend trip kayaking The Black Canyon. That’s the Colorado River from the Hoover Dam to Willow Beach. It was an AMAZING trip and we had a fantastic time. I can’t wait to tell you all about it.

Next Monday.

Yep, I want to be able to write up some of the highlights of our trip so for now, I just want to post some of my favorite photos.

Hoover Dam and New Bridge

Water On Rocks

Big Horn Sheep


tea bag

Kayaks on shore

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger... Affiliate Link
Let Kim Help You Publish Your eBook
On The Beach Publishing
Share |
Royalty Free Images