Number 27 - See an Erupting Volcano

Climbing the final leg on foot, you feel a small rumble and then hear a tremendous roar as you climb, Yasur is greeting you. What a sight to behold.

Number 49 - See both Solar and Lunar eclipses

And while it was not total in Brisbane (83%), it was a strange thing watching it through the solar glasses seeing a massive slice of the sun missing.

Number 10b: Visit Chernobyl

Chernoybyl and Pripyat. Hauntingly beautiful, incredible experiance in an amazing country.

Number 11 - Storm Chase a Tornado*

Partial complete, but an amazing experience even as they were "Rain Wrapped". Huge epic storms with beautiful structure and powerful lightning.

Number 23b: Spend a night in the desert

The heat, the cold and the incredible vast distances of sand.

Wednesday 20 November 2013

Number 98: Go on a Demonstration

Completed 05 November 2013 
Brisbane, QLD Australia  

The names have been changed to protect the innocent. <insert Law and Order sound>

Completing number 98 came about in a matter on a couple of weeks after a friend of mine Simon Says invited me to an event via Facebook. The event? The Million Mask March. 

A global event that generally lands on Guy Fawkes Day for supporters of a number of different ideas such as freedom of information, opposition of both corporate and political corruption, a free and independent media and general personal freedom and equality and government and corporate accountability all of which are views I support. 

Unfortunately the Anonymous movement also does seem to attract a fair share of conspiracy theorists that have been debunked time and time again such as 911 “Truthers”, Moon land hoaxers, Chemtrailers and HAARPers. My views are simply this, conspiracies do happen but simply believing unscientific nonsense does nothing but damage your own cause as when scientifically literate people see slogans like “Stop spraying me - Chemtrails” they will write off the entire movement.

Far right.
It also married up that the state government had introduced new "Anti-bikie" laws recently that were of great concern for example it can be used on anything classed as an "association" and it sets the stage for someone to be charged by who you associate with and not the crime you commit. Dangerous road indeed.  

However personal views aside, the walk was set for 3:00pm on 5 November 2013 and I got my gear ready since I would be leaving early from work to attend. The date also coincided with the Melbourne Cup so our audience would be quite large while we walked and I was semi-suited for the event.
Ready to rock this.
So I met up with my mate Simon Says and we walked right around the Brisbane CBD with our police escort which chants, songs and a fair degree of disorganization. But we did it in the super hot weather and celebrated with a couple of cold beers on a school night. 

Spot me if you can.
Mark 98 as done.

Saturday 17 August 2013

Number 83: Skinny Dip at Midnight

Completed 02 February 2013 
Brisbane / Southbank, QLD Australia  

So it's been a while, but in the meantime I did manage to tick one more thing off the list being number 83. 

The names have been changed to protect the innocent. <insert Law and Order sound>

This one ended up being quite impromptu, unplanned with more than a couple of drinks to make it seem like a good idea. I should also mention in advance that I don't really live in the middle of the bush, so this was a city adventure.   

So it all started after work drinks on a Friday night when Jimmy the snitch* suggested we go swimming at Southbank, which we had done on one other occasion previously... Unfortunately the time was only around 11:30pm when we got kicked out that time. 

The Southbank pool
I checked my watch, 11:30pm already... by the time we got there I might just have a chance to tick this one of I thought. I was in. So a few of us jumped in a cab and headed over. 

We picked our spot with as much cover as possible
We picked a spot and jumped in... 11:45pm. I was going to make it I thought, but I thought that minutes too soon.  A security patrol spotted us and warned us to get out and pack up. Ruined, we did what they asked... Until they left, boom 11:55pm back in and counting the minutes. 

12:00am - 83 Completed.  

Now I would have thought the hard part was done, nope, not yet. No one said this bucket list was going to be easy or cheap. A lesson I was just about to learn. 

After packing up our gear and clothes I noticed that a few things of mine were missing, namely my phone and wallet. It was better than the alternative of my clothes being missing granted, but ouch. So walking home it was with a quick stop off at a police station to log a police report for future protection. Thank goodness I still had my keys. 

Mark 83 as done

Thursday 17 January 2013

Number 49: See Both Solar and Lunar Eclipses

Completed 16 June 2011 and 14 November 2012
Total Lunar Eclipse and Partial Solar Eclipse. 

So as a bit of an astronomy nerd, this one was going to be completed with or without a bucket list.  

The total lunar eclipse took place in June of 2011 with the maximum being at around 4:50am and in the middle of June that meant it was quite cold (for Brisbane). It also turned out to be a perfectly clear night for viewing, not a cloud in the sky. 

My astronomy set up.
So I started setting up my gear at around 3:00am including telescope, mount, camera and accessories. Oh I happen to be using a Skywatcher Black Diamond 130mm Mak Cass mounted on a Heq5 Pro tripod and a Nikon D40x. 

Lunar Eclipse - 16 June 2011

The solar eclipse was much more of an event on 14 November 2012 with the maximum being at 6:58am. So lots of research  to find out what time, where to be, what percentage we would get. I woke up really early that morning, around 3:00am to get ready with all my camera gear and walk around to the roof level of the nearby car park for the uninterrupted views of the eclipse.  

Path and percentages of the eclipse

And while it was not total in Brisbane (83%), there was a noticeable changes in both temperature and light levels as it took place. It was a strange thing watching it through the solar glasses seeing a massive slice of the sun missing. 

Partial Solar Eclipse - 14 November 2012

Mark 49 as done.