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Inspiring You To Lead A More Adventuresome Life Through People, Places, Products, Performances & Prose Recommended by Rugged Elegance
January 2, 2006
Warren Miller Entertainment High-Def Movie Takes Skiers to Higher Ground
Warren.Miller.Jeremy.Bloom.jpg Skier Jeremy Bloom Photo Credit: John Schwirtlich

When I get to Heaven I want to be in a Warren Miller movie. Until then, I'll have to join the thousands of other adventure buffs on the planet and live vicariously through professional skiers, snowboarders, jumpers, and fly-like-a-bird mountaineers by watching the likes of reigning World Cup mogul champion and NCAA football player turned Olympic Gold Medal favorite turning NFL hopeful Jeremy Bloom, Ski-BASE jumping innovator Shane McConkey, the sport's hot-dogging icon, Glen Plake, and the man who defines "Higher Ground", mountaineer, Dave Barlia, on the big screen. That's what my extended family did before the close of 2005, just off a blizzard cold day on Mt. Bachelor at Sunriver Resort near Bend, Oregon.

Bloom, McConkey, Plake and Barlia are just a few of the wild stars in this year's Warren Miller Entertainment high definition, independent film called Higher Ground. Jeremy Bloom is also a co-narrator of this year's film.

Warren.Miller.05.Film.jpgDuring the last week of December 2005, nine of us headed over to the Sunriver Resort Lodge High Camp theater.

Having attended the University of Colorado from 1978 - 1981 (well before Jeremy Bloom's time), I became a fan of Warren Miller films when I was in college. So, when I heard that the Sunriver Lodge was showing Miller's latest movie (#56), I was determined to turn it into a highlight of our three-day-adventure in the Great Northwest.

For parents with young children and a passion for skiing, you can't get a better G-rated film to get you and your kids pumped up about hitting the slopes.

Warren Miller Entertainment once again had the packed theater oohing, aahing, laughing, and "wowing!".

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Posted by jck at 12:30 AM
November 28, 2005
The Cirrus SR22-G2 Aircraft: Flying & Fun in Northern California

On Saturday, November 26th, 2005 I laid eyes on one of the most beautiful airplanes I've ever seen: a CIRRUS SR22-G2. Timothy Charles and our ten year-old daughter, Jessica had the privilege of riding in N45OAP from San Carlos down to Monterey for lunch and back. Our friend Randy Dilena, the pilot and owner of the plane, gave me "a tour" of his plane, while Randy's daughter gave Jessica a tour of San Carlos' "SQL" Airport. (The airport is located off the same parkway as Oracle Corporation.)

Cirrus is the world's second largest manufacturer of single-engine, piston-powered aircraft.

The SR22 uses a Teledyne Continental Motors' 310-horsepower IO-550.

The interior is BMW-inspired.


Tim thought the body of the Cirrus is reminiscent of one of the most beautiful cars in the world, Ralph Lauren's 1938 Bugatti 57SC Atlantic. This summer, we got to see Lauren's Bugatti Atlantic at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts Museum. The exhibit, which has now left the MFA, was called Speed, Style, and Beauty Exhibit: Cars from the Ralph Lauren Collection.

The book alone was worth the price of admission.

Aside from the interior and exterior beauty of the Cirrus SR22, the most unique feature is that it comes with a rocket-propelled parachute system that can support the entire plane. Randy calls it "The Spousal Support Feature".

Cirrus calls it the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System or "CAPS".

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Summaries of Other Recent Posts
October 16, 2005
The Fairmont's Effort to Take The "Unfair" & Make it Fair at California's Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa

The historic Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa is where we chose to celebrate our 16th wedding anniversary this year. That's the good news. The bad news is that we never opened the bottle of champagne I had the hotel put in our room or the bottle of Kenwood Chardonnay provided by the Sonoma Mission Inn. At 11 pm, we packed our bags, loaded up the kids, who had already fallen asleep, and headed home to San Francisco. As... more

September 13, 2005
United Airlines Provides First Class Service in Economy For Humans & Pets

Last Tuesday, after traveling from the north of Sweden to Stockholm, to New Jersey, to Maine, the King Fredel clan was only looking forward to our final two flights from New Hampshire to Oakland because it meant we were on our way home to San Francisco, California. From our property in Southern Maine, it took us an hour-and-a-half to get to Manchester, New Hampshire's airport. With golf clubs, two bags a piece, a kennel and a Golden Retriever to... more

September 8, 2005
Soulful Europeans Teach Us Hard-Driving Americans How To Vacation

It was twenty years ago this summer that I started BioSpace. From 1985 until 2000 when I unwillingly departed as co-CEO, the only significant break I took from work during those fifteen years was to give birth to my other "two babies" -- Jessie and Niki. And now, for the past five years, we have been busy building Rugged Elegance. Summer 2005 represented a first. For the first time since adulthood, we took six weeks off just for the... more

July 12, 2005
"A View of the World" from

A Bird's Eye View of the Eiffel Tower from This summer, we had planned to take the kids to Paris, but unfortunately our trip to both France and Spain didn't pan out. Instead we've been treating the girls to many of our favorite French bistros in San Francisco like Chapeau! on Clement, Bistro Clovis in Hayes Valley, Mocca for lunch in Union Square and Hyde Street Bistro and La Folie in Russian Hill. Then along came On... more

July 6, 2005
2012 Summer Olympians to Compete in London, England: David Beckham's Star Power Shines

If you're destined to compete in or cheer on an athlete or team in the 2012 Summer Olympics, in seven years plan to pack your bags for London. On Wednesday, July 6th 2005 116 members of the International Olympic Committee placed their final votes in Singapore. The 2012 Summer Olympics are heading to England! David Beckham, one of the world's most famous soccer players, used his star power to help England win. David Beckham & Tony Blair in Singapore... more

July 1, 2005
Affleck No Longer Alias To Marriage: Ben Marries Jennifer Garner in Top-Secret Caribbean Wedding

A Sunset Wedding at The Parrot Cay Island Resort On Wednesday, June 29th 2005, Academy award-winning screenwriter and movie star, Benjamin Geza Affleck wed Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe winning actress, Jennifer Anne Garner in a top-secret Caribbean ceremony. Ben and Jen's "I Dos!" are a first for Affleck. The thirty-two year-old groom previously had high profile relationships with Jennifer Lopez and Gwyneth Paltrow. Thirty-three year-old Garner was previously married to actor Scott Foley. Garner and Affleck exchanged... more

June 11, 2005
Venice at Sunset on The Eve of La Biennale di Venezia 2005, the 51st International Contemporary Art Exhibition

Rugged Elegant Photograph of The Day Four summers ago, Tim and I took our family to Italy for the first time, which included a train ride from Verona to Venice. I remember the train ride well because my daughter, who was six at the time, read Harry Potter to me all the way to Venice. Upon our arrival, Tim looked at the clouds overhead and then said, "We have approximately fifty seconds to get across that bridge and under... more

April 18, 2005
PassportMD Launches Business Card-Sized Personal Medical History CD-ROM for Travelers

For a parent with two children who have Type 1 Diabetes, having 24/7 access to good medical care is imperative. Whenever we travel the first question I ask the hotel concierge is "Where is the closest hospital and do you have a number to call - other than 911 - if we have an emergency?" Now, thanks to a doctor in Florida, getting quality healthcare on the road just got a lot easier. This month, a medical records storage... more

April 14, 2005
Seventeen Adventuresome San Francisco Women Travel to Hong Kong -- Day One of 'Mom's Night Out' in Asia

A Rugged Elegant Living Exclusive by Jennifer King Carolyn Dilena is not only beautiful; she's a genius. The San Francisco family businesswoman and mother of three asked one hundred and twenty girlfriends from each of her kids' classes if they might be interested in turning Mom's Night Out this year into five in Hong Kong. Of all the adventuresome women in Carolyn's world, at least two-dozen said count me in. On April 7th, the day the "ship set sail" on... more

April 1, 2005
Rugged Elegant Photo of The Day: Puebla Mexico's Active Popocatepetl Volcano

Today's Rugged Elegant Living photo of the day was shot on Wednesday night near the city of Puebla, Mexico. AP Photographer Joel Merino captured the Popocatepetl volcano sending out a plume of smoke at dusk on March 30, 2005. The towering volcano Popocatepetl, a Mexican icon, has inspired awe and worship since before the time of Cortes.... more

November 30, 2004
Rugged Elegant Photo of The Day: Horsing Around The Eiffel Tower on Ice Skates

AFP Photographer, Janek Skarzynski captured this night view of the Eiffel tower in Paris. Work began to install an ice-skating rink in the Eiffel Tower as Paris plans to offer six weeks of free skating with a bird's-eye view of the city over the winter period. A gigantic crane was put in place to lift some ten tons of equipment to the tower's first level, where the rink is set to open on December 10th in time for the... more

November 23, 2004
Oprah Shares Her Early Christmas Gift "2004 Favorite Things" Extravaganza with 300 Teachers

This morning, as I headed for my PowerBook laptop to get started on today's "inspirational" post, Tim stopped me dead in my tracks. "Stop whatever you're doing," he said. As he handed me my morning cup of SpecialTea he exclaimed, "Come here and watch this. On yesterday's Oprah Winfrey show, she surprised 300 teachers and gave away nearly twenty of her 'Favorite Things' to each and every one of them." While this was Oprah's eighth annual "Favorite Things" gift... more

October 30, 2004
NASA To Send Space Shuttle Discovery and Seven Astronauts on STS-114 Mission This Spring

NASA, the American space agency responsible for putting a man on the moon but who also lost seven astronauts in its 2003 Columbia Shuttle voyage and seven astronauts in its 1986 Challenger take-off, says the first space shuttle mission since the disaster of 2003 will be launched next May or early June. The Space Shuttle is NASA's reusable manned space vehicle designed for the transport of people, spacecraft and equipment to and from the Earth's orbit. The first mission... more

October 16, 2004
Rugged Elegant Adventure Photo: French Bullfighter in Pamplona Inspired To New Heights

This summer, AFP Photographer Rafa Rivas captured French bullfighter Sebastian Castella Turzack being lifted by this Nunez de Cuvillo bull at the San Fermin fiesta in Pamplona, Spain. The bullfights are said to be the most unique in all of Spain due to the festive atmosphere surrounding the nine days of cultural celebration. In Southern France and Spain, bullfighters are superstars. The only other celebrities in these countries that have a higher status are soccer players. Some Matadors are... more

September 27, 2004
Who Will Be The First Virgin Bride on Virgin Galactic's First Space Flight?

Today, adventurous British entrepreneur Richard Branson formally announced that his Virgin transport, entertainment and communications company plans to launch commercial sub-orbital space flights by 2007. Virgin Galactic Airways was first introduced on May 1, 1999. The first Galactic flights are planned to take place in two-and-a-half to three years time. Branson will begin taking deposits as early as next year. The first space vehicle will be called VSS-Enterprise. Five Virgin Galactic SpaceShips are to be built. They will carry... more

July 21, 2004
The Pitcher Inn, A Warren Vermont Summertime Destination & Rugged Elegant "Relais & Chateaux"

The Hayloft Suite at Vermont's Pitcher Inn New England is most often thought of as the place to go in the fall -- for the peak of the foliage! Come winter, Vermont's Sugarbush Ski Resort is one of the hottest destinations on the east coast. However, if you point your compass this summer in the direction of Mad River Valley and Vermont's Pitcher Inn, Co-Managers, Michael & Luciana Nijdam can introduce you to hiking, biking and gliding adventures that... more

June 14, 2004
Richard Branson Celebrates Virgin's 20th By Crossing The English Channel in His Aquada

Today, Sir Richard Branson, the Virgin Group chief completed the 22-mile crossing in his shiny black Gibbs Aquada amphibious craft in 100 minutes and six seconds, well below the previous record of six hours held by two Frenchmen in the 1960s. Dressed in a dinner jacket and bow tie, the British tycoon drove his $115,000 James Bond-like sportscar which transforms into a speedboat straight into the Guinness Book of World Records. The sleek grey Aquada amphibious car,... more

May 9, 2004
Park Life -- After the Birth of his New Baby, Blur Bass Player Alex James and Family Needed to Recuperate In Rural Ireland... what they Found a World-Class Retreat There are five-star hotels that are quite ghastly; put a chocolate on your pillow and one complimentary newspaper and call it luxury. There is, actually, a sixth star. I don't mean like those state-of-the-art seven-star joints in Mauritius and Dubai, I mean a special grade which no one ever attains. There should be no six-star hotels, because, like the speed of light, the sixth star should be something that can only be approached, and never actually achieved, a... more

February 3, 2004
Louis Vuitton Celebrates 150 Years

A Rugged Elegance Inspiration Network Exclusive by Jennifer King Louis Vuitton is celebrating its 150th birthday. Next week, as part of the fanfare, a new store will open on New York's Fifth Avenue. In Paris, they are already celebrating having created a chocolate-brown trunk with gold initials. Founded in 1854 by the son of a carpenter, Louis Vuitton has made its mark as a world-class operation. "We did not want to focus on one single event with a cake... more

January 22, 2004
American Soldiers Offered First-Class Treatment

If you have been serving the United States as an American soldier, Delta and American Airlines would like to say thank you by welcoming you to a First-Class seat in their airport club while you are on R&R leave. "Operation Iraqi Freedom" papers are all you need along with an airline ticket. Your ticket need not even be booked with Delta or American. Nor do you need to be coming from or going to Iraq. Through the end of... more

January 6, 2004
Alpine Debuts World's First Car Audio Head Units That Integrate With Apple's iPod

Alpine Electronics' January 6, 2004 Press Release: Alpine Electronics of America, Inc., the industry-leading manufacturer of high performance mobile electronics, will demonstrate at CES the world's first solution that enables consumers to connect and control their iPod from their in-vehicle sound system. Alpine's iPod Ready strategy is part of the company's overarching mission to create innovative in-vehicle electronics that are easier to use and provide great sound in the mobile environment. "The integration of iPod control into selected 2004... more

January 4, 2004
Fort Myers in Top 10 U.S. Travel Destinations Despite lingering fears of terrorism and a slow economy, Southwest Florida's Lee County remains a hot spot for travelers around the nation, a recent poll shows. Fort Myers ranked the No. 8 destination in the United States for 2004 in a poll conducted by Carlson Wagonlit Travel. It was the smallest city listed in the poll of almost 300 travel agents from 62 markets, besting No. 9 San Francisco and No. 10 Los Angeles. Besides the weather, tourism officials... more

January 3, 2004
Practical Traveler: Online Auctions Reduce Risks

New York Times: By Bob Tedeschi Published: January 4, 2004 LAST year when Paige Pierson lost her job in the San Francisco Bay Area's dot-com contraction, she resolved not to abandon her travel passions. The auctions on eBay had been a constant source of entertainment and the occasional bargain in recent years, and being a dot-commer, Ms. Pierson knew of other Web sites that sold travel through auctions. So in February, while musing about how to introduce her newborn son,... more

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