Tomb Raider Games – Angry Video Game Nerd (Episode 159)

I have a confession… …I totally missed out on the Tomb Raider craze! Full disclosure: I saved all my money for a Nintendo 64, so I missed out on all the PlayStation games that everybody talks about, like: “Metal Gear Solid”, “Symphony of the Night”, “Final Fantasy VII”, and yes, “Tomb Raider”. In the mid-’90s and early 2000s, Tomb Raider was one of the biggest game franchises. Every year, we got a new Tomb Raider game. We even got a Tomb Raider slot machine (84.7 score from MyCasinoIndex).

I can see why people liked it. It revolutionized 3D platforming, the same way Super Mario 64 did. The puzzles were fun, the settings were cool, the music was atmospheric, and the action was top-notch for the time.

Seemed like the only thing bigger than the games, was its star: Lara Croft. Lara Croft was basically Indiana Jones for the ’90s. You thought Indy was badass? Lara goes from fighting wolves and dinosaurs, to mummies, and eventually skinless Atlantean demons straight from a Clive Barker movie.

Oh, and bats. She also fights bats. Can’t forget those.

Lara Croft’s popularity took the world by storm. She was the first female game protagonist to get this kind of attention. Her fame transcended the games and she ended up being on the cover of magazines, and even the spokesperson for products. I’m not kidding!

She was in car commercials, soda commercials, and an ad for VISA! Seems like the world was obsessed with Lara Croft! Even in the early episodes, when I always had that Zelda poster, on the other side… Lara was here, all along. I’m not sure why everyone was into Lara Croft, but I can guess a couple of reasons.

These days, she still appears in games, and even had a few movies based off her. Her fame might not be as big as it was back then, but it’s clear she will still be kickin’ ass in video games for a long time. But they can’t all be hits, and that’s why I’m gonna go on a journey to find the worst Tomb Raider games ever made! Now, you gotta pack, because when you’re dealin’ with shitty games, you gotta really be prepared for these. Because these games, who knows how bad they’re gonna be!

I mean, we might find some VILE fuckin’ crap here! So you gotta bring… ALL the necessities here! [packing “necessities”] [bird calls] [shark ‘Godzilla’ roaring] [THWACK!]

So here’s “Tomb Raider: Chronicles”, the fifth in the series, but the first to fail critically and financially. The game opens with Lara’s funeral. Yeah, that’s right.

The last game ended with her dying! The developers were tired of doing Tomb Raider and hoped the fourth game would be the end. Well, maybe if I killed off my character, I wouldn’t have to review any more shitty games! Ah, just kiddin’. Not yet.

The game centers around a group of her friends sharing stories of her adventures. After that, we get a loading screen where I noticed something interesting… There’s a credit – for Timex.

Yeah, Timex, the watch company. What, did they make this game on a ZX Spectrum? Oh, here’s why! It’s an ad, for a grip clip watch. Lara uses it in the game to keep track of her time and progress.

So right away, this game just sells out with the product placement! [in the wise words of Garth Algar] “It’s like people only do things because they get paid. And that’s just really sad.” The first story is about Lara tryin’ to find the Philosopher’s Stone in Rome. It starts off with a quick reminder of the basic controls and introduces new mechanics like parallel bar swinging and tightrope walking. Other than that, it’s the same old thing.

Everything looks and feels like the previous games, right down to Lara’s outfit. Although her shorts are see-through, now, for some reason. You go around, find keys, flip switches, and… kill some gargoyles and a crazy-squid-thing that shoots lasers. You even get to fight a couple statues that look like Talos from “Jason and the Argonauts”. It gets kinda confusing when gladiators show up.

Are these gladiators left over from the Roman Empire? Had they just been hangin’ out down here for thousands of years? Or are they just employees at the Colosseum, dressed as gladiators? I hope not, because you shoot the hell outta them! Damn!

Hate to see Laura at a Renaissance Fair! Chronicles is just a soulless rehash of the other games and a shameless advertisement for a watch no one remembers. I dunno what else to say about it, so, I’ll just quote one of the developers of the game. “Tomb Raider 5 was effectively a load of old SHIT.”

“That was the most depressing one for us.” “We were effectively just doing that for a paycheck because no other team wanted to take it on.” “So we had to do it, basically. By that time it had taken its toll.” “Three years of hammering it and we were burnt out.

That shows in the product.” … Huh! Oh my God! This might be the first time someone who MADE the game, reviewed it for me!

Huh! [SPLASH!] [skeleton ‘Godzilla’ roars] [gun fire] So here it is! The Holy Grail of shitty Tomb Raider games, “Angel of Darkness”! It was so bad, it KILLED the studio making it and nearly killed the WHOLE franchise! This was the first Tomb Raider game on the PS2.

It was gonna usher Lara Croft into a new age, with a bigger, better adventure. There would be larger environments, and more stuff to do! It would be a whole new game! Or it would’ve been, if the development wasn’t such a disaster. The problems start right at the beginning: the opening cutscene introduces Lara in a dark office where her associate gets killed by someone off-screen.

This is how you open your fun action-adventure game? By ripping off “Clue”? Compare this to the first game, which opens in an exotic location, and has Lara murdering FUCKING wolves!

But then Angel of Darkness starts off with a tutorial, and you BETTER not fuck up, because if you die *without* saving, you START. AT. THE.

BEGINNING. And I don’t mean the beginning of the level. I mean the “beginning of the WHOLE game”. No checkpoints, nothing, so get used to saving. SAVE after every puzzle, SAVE after every enemy, and SAVE after EVERY jump!

[sign] And the jumping… you would think, since this is PS2, the controls would be better than PS1! [chuckles] But, you’d be wrong. They’re EXTREMELY clunky, and that’s the reason why you die so much. Y’know what would’ve been nice? A training section where I could practice these new controls without affecting the main game!

Y’know, like the Croft Manor section in the old games. [switch clicks; door opens] Winston: “Uhh…”(?) Oh, and this is one of those PS2 games where you *have* to use an older TV.

Because if it’s on HDTV, it’s so dark, you can’t see anything, unless you turn the brightness all the way up, black out your windows and then shoot a rocket into the Sun, covering the whole Solar System in darkness. And then MAYBE, you’ll be able to see somethin’. I’m not kidding! This one jump took me 20 to 30 minutes because I couldn’t see there was a LEDGE to grab on to.

I had to turn the brightness ALL the way up. Yeah, it’s no wonder why they called this, “Angel of DARKness”. You also notice, some of this footage looks like it’s in slow motion. I thought maybe it was some “Bullet Time” or “Max Payne” shit, but no! The GAME, will randomly slow down. One part was entirely slow-mo, unless I was jumping.

But even when it’s running at the right speed, Lara still feels too slow. In fact, this entire game makes Lara weaker. And the reason for that was because, originally, it was supposed to have a progression system – where you level up, so as the game goes on you gain more abilities. But unfortunately, that got cut. Now, you have to reach a certain point in the game to get a new ability.

Climbing this wall will make you be able to climb longer. Moving this box will give you the ability to move two boxes. Kicking a huge metal drawbridge will give you the ability to open a small door.

That doesn’t even make any sense! The creators spent so much time figurin’ out how to make Lara’s boobs jiggle, they forgot to make her fun to play! By the way, the camera in this game sucks! It constantly fucks you up and makes jumping difficult. At one point, the camera goes into Lara’s HEAD!

And it’s one of the most horrifying images I’ve seen! [intense horror scream] In the words of one of the people who made the game: “The camera was just a complete pig.” Yeah, that’s one way to put it. One of the new things this game intended to introduce was stealth.

I’m not sure why, though. There’s no penalty for NOT being stealthy. I could probably sneak up on some people.

Or… I can just easily kill them. Why introduce stealth if it was gonna be optional?

I guess one of the new things introduced that kinda works is the dialogue trees. At least with this first one, your decision affects the game. Now we finally get to the Paris level, which was meant to be this BIG open world with… many things to interact with. But unfortunately, it just turned into… a big empty wasteland.

Whatever was meant to be in the Paris level must’ve been big, because you can’t go five feet without the game loading the next area. You turn into an alley – load. You walk up a staircase – load. You walk from one end of the street to another? Load!

There’s a store you can go in, when asking people how to get into a nightclub. You have one conversation, and never go back to this place, again. This was supposed to be a place that you’d come back to, later in the game, but everything was removed, except this one scene. Then there’s the… boxing match… It doesn’t matter who you picked, because the winner is totally random.

Sometimes the game glitches and they don’t fight at all! Just keep reloading until the person you picked wins. And what do ya get outta this?! Lara Croft: “I bet all the cash in my pocket against your fancy gold watch that I can pick the best fighter.” A watch?! That you can sell?!

THIS?! So here’s a weird thing I don’t need this lousy, stinkin’ Timex watch! So here’s a weird thing I found: there’s this guy in the park, you walk up to ‘im, and he just says the same thing, over and over… Strange man: “Leave me alone. I’m busy.”

“Leave me alone. I’m busy.” 4th Wall Breaker Nerd: Busy? Busy doin’ what? Starin’ at a wall? AVGN: A guy standing in the park, all by himself, saying he’s “busy”.

He looks like the least busy person in the world! That’s all he says! Turns out, he’s one of two people who help you get into the club. I talked to someone else first, so that triggers this guy to just say the same thing, over and over. Strange man, again: “Leave me alone. I’m busy.”

Eventually, I got into the nightclub where I noticed two more glitches: While climbing the light fixtures, I randomly just started climbing on to thin air. Yeah! This kind of floating happens a couple times. I once even got stuck in the air, split in two, and started phasing in and out of reality!

The next glitch is more common: If you think you’re about to die, it’s faster to just pause and restart from your last save. But if you pause in the middle of Lara’s death scream, you’ll get this: [Lara’s death scream being recycled] [Lara’s death scream being recycled] Ah! [Lara’s death scream being recycled, now hollowed] Ahh-! I-i-it just drills on your ears! It-like… …you’re gonna be hearin’ that in your nightmares! Hey, have you noticed anything in these levels?

I’m raiding, apartments, churches, nightclubs? Shouldn’t I be raiding… …TOMBS? I haven’t seen a single tomb, yet!

I made it to a graveyard, but all they had were crypts. Instead, I have to go to the Louvre and kill some security guards. I’m not even sure if they’re bad guys, but the game doesn’t penalize me for killing them.

Maybe Lara is just a violent murderer. Eventually, you go underground and actually find a tomb, wow! It’s broken up into four parts: “Earth”, “Wind”, “Water”, and “Fire”. This is the only part in the game, so far, that actually feels like “Tomb Raider”. And… they still fuck it up.

[Lara dies] The Water Level has these spikes that come outta nowhere. After making a careful jump in the Fire Level, a rock will shoot you into the air. Or, you’ll just die for no reason. In the Wind Level, I went to jump on a log, and instead, fell through it!

[more of Lara’s Death Scream] Fuck! Tomb Raider games are known for secret areas, and I found one here, but it’s not because I found a clue, or scaled some wall or somethin’. No, it’s because the game glitched! Next, you go back to the Louvre, which is full of toxic gas. Lara needs to run to a cabinet and grab a gas mask, but the people she’s killin’ along the way, HAVE gas masks.

Why can’t I just take theirs? Why are they over-complicating this? [Menacing] Who the fuck is this guy, and why are they giving him so much attention?! And why does he have the Glaive from “Krull”?

[kicking] Why, am I playing, as him? Here, they couldn’t even get Lara Croft right! Why should I be excited about playing as this asshole?! Believe it or not, his controls are clunkier than Lara’s, and he’s even LESS fun to play. Everything about him is lame: his hair, his soul patch, and his dumb ass mind powers that let him see stuff around corners or in other rooms! Ah!

[heavy panting] Desperate Nerd: I need to finish it! I need to finish the game! Man: Junior, let it go.

But I’m so close! I’m so close! I can finish it! Nerd… [whispering] …Let it go, AVGN: You’re right. Fuck this shitty game. [stock cartoon falling sound] [POOF!]

So, the whole story is: the game was rushed out, unfinished. It failed, and then Core Design – the company who originally made Tomb Raider, SHUT. DOWN. It was SO bad, that Paramount blamed it for “Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life’s” low box-office.

Oh, and have you ever notice the Angelina Jolie Tomb Raider movies aren’t called “Tomb Raider”? They’re officially called “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider” and “Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life” What a mouthful! Did you they just READ the movie poster out loud? Might be why it took 15 years to get another feature film, which was simply called, “Tomb Raider”, unless the real title was supposed to be: “Alicia Vikander is Lara Croft Tomb Raider March 16th experience at an IMAX”.

But that’s probably too much for a theater marquee, right? Anyway, it was the end of an era, but my journey leads to one last game. One almost forgotten, like the shit you took last month. The “Nokia N-GAGE”.

Nokia’s ATTEMPT to mix a PHONE, with a gaming system. These days, it’s common to play a game on your phone, but back then options were… kinda limited, but Nokia was here to change that. They had a pretty impressive catalog, too – stuff like: “Call of Duty”, “Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater”, and of course, “Tomb Raider”. Before we play the game, we have to put it in! Right?

No problem, let’s just pop the back off the phone… then ya pull out the battery…. Hmm. I hope no one tries to call me while I’m doin’ this. [phone dialing] -“Shit pickle!” “Shit pickle!” “Shit pickle!”

-“Shit pickle! (x8)” -“FUCKERS! (x2)” So then we insert the SD card…. …pop the battery back in, put the case back on, and we’re ready! Well, it’s “Tomb Raider”.

That’s what it is. It’s a remake [DE-port, Nerd, not a remake] of the first game, only adjusted to fit on to the N-GAGE. The animated cutscenes are removed and replaced with text over static images.

They also got rid of the music! All ya hear, now, is footsteps gunshots and enemies growling. [wolf growling] [wolf dies] Gotta admit, it’s pretty impressive how they were able to fit the WHOLE PS1 game, on to a tiny SD card, back then.

It has all the same moves from the first game. One annoying difference is that when you press forward, Lara will keep running until you stop her or she hit something. It makes timing jumps real difficult. And the camera is… mildly shitty. Early PlayStation games didn’t have the best graphics, and they got even worse when you shrink ’em down.

I’m not sure why they didn’t just port one of the 2-D Game Boy games instead. Well, it was an interesting experiment, but ultimately a failure. The N-GAGE, couldn’t compete with the Game Boy Advance, and eventually faded into obscurity. [temple rumbles] [explosion] Oooooh, shhiiiiiiit! [golden dragon ‘Godzilla’ roaring] [more explosions] Strange Golden Dragon: “Leave me alone.


CS:GO Version mouse for esports (Review)

I’ve played with the regular Zowie EC2-B for about a month now. This is my new favorite esports mouse, but it just got even better.

Zowie is the most popular choice for esports fans and pro players. According to the Zowie EC2 is the most popular esports mouse together with the Zowie products. So why is it that Zowie is on the top? Speaking for myself, I believe it’s a combination of shape, simplicity and build quality for it’s price, it’s the perfect choice for almost any competitive player.

Now you probably noticed that there’s an EC1 and EC2. EC1 is larger and EC2 is smaller, as you can see here, but they’re from the same EC series and it’s all about preference. For me, using a larger mouse can often be more comfortable and relaxing for the hand, but if I use a smaller mouse I get better aim which is something I want when I play CSGO.

My hands are roughly 19 cm but using the EC2 fits my hand perfectly. My preferred hand style is the palm grip which works very well with this mouse, cause you can get your whole hand around it. But fingertip and clawgrip should work really well If you have medium to large sized hands. So what’s the main difference between the CSGO version and the regular one? Well, the size is the same, the weight is exactly the same, but there are some noticeable differences.

First thing is obviously the look, it has a dark blue and black coating which makes it look stealthy combined with the logo in the front which gives it a bit of contrast. It’s a beautiful mouse, but my main concern would be the feel of the mouse. And I can tell you, it’s a relief to know that it’s using the same type of coating as the black one.

I prefer the texture and it’s great if you don’t want your mouse to look so dirty. Here’s the white coating just to give you guys an example. Apart from the looks there are two more things I discovered. The first was the clicking sound of the buttons. The clicking sounds a bit lighter to me on the CSGO version but maybe it’s because of the textures or just because I’ve barely used it. The second thing I noticed could just be that I was unlucky with my regular EC2-B but it does make more noise when I shake it compared to the CSGO version.

This should not determine anything in my opinion but it’s only something I noticed with my own EC2-B’s. If you went out to buy a regular EC2-B with black coating you would pretty much get the same thing as the CSGO version. However, this is a CSGO channel and my new favorite mouse happens to have a CSGO skin, so obviously I’m gonna buy it.

When opening the package you’ll notice how simple everything is, but the coolest part, there’s no software involved. The only settings on the mouse are the ones below, the report rate and DPI. It’s perfect for when you need to move your mouse to another computer, all the settings are stored on the mouse and it’s not like you need to use a software or login to an account to load your settings. I’ve always liked Zowie products because of this, they’re simple, easy to use and I think this is what an esports mouse is all about to play real money casino ca effortlessly.

As soon as you plug the EC series in, you’ll immediately feel the tracking, it’s really smooth, and responsive. There is no hardware acceleration, and angle snapping. Getting used to the EC2-B goes really fast, the same for EC1-B, but I feel like you can get even better precision with the smaller one. After a few minutes I was already landing some sick shots, this is all recorded with the new mouse. If you’re new to the Zowie products, then I feel like getting the EC2-B CSGO version is worth the money. If you already have the EC series then maybe you should just keep using it seeing there’s not really much of a difference apart from the look.

In the end this is all I really wanted. It’s a cool product and even cooler that they actually did something together with Valve. I’ll put some links down below if you want to buy it yourself. You can follow me on my social medias to see what’s going on behind the scenes. I’ll see you guys in the next one, and go bananas!


Why The Martingale Betting System Doesn’t Work

Last video I talked about a strategy of betting called the martingale system. It’s a strategy where you always chase the total amount you’ve lost so far by betting that loss plus 2. So that when you eventually win, you win 2 guaranteed.

A lot of you saw the flaw in this system was that the amount of money you’d need to sustain it would be infinite. The issue is, even if you have a really huge amount of money, as long as it’s finite, the expectation value from playing this game is 0. That’s because, with a very small chance, you’d run out of money to keep betting and you’d lose a lot. I didn’t believe this until I did the calculation, because it seemed like you were so unlikely to even lose many times in a row and so you didn’t really need to worry about getting to the stage where you’d need to bet big, so you didn’t have to worry about folding.

But let’s do the calculation and see what happens. Everyone has some number of losses, that would mean they will have lost enough money that they wouldn’t be able to pay the amount they need to bet for the next round, so they’d have to give up. Let’s call this number of losses for a particular person, n. n can be very high or very low, it doesn’t matter. The person only has a 1 in 2^n chance of losing the maximum n times in a row. If they don’t lose then they win 2- that’s most of the time, with a the probability (1-1/2^n).

But in the unlikely event they do lose, their total loss is this sum of losses so far, which we know is 2^(n+1)-2. So we put all of this together in the expectation value formula: the probability of not folding times the gain plus the probability of folding times the loss… and it magically works out to zero. The way to explain this is, when you play this strategy, with very good probability you win make a modest gain, but with small probability you will make a disastrous fall. It averages out to 0 in expectation.

The higher your value of n, the less likely you’ll lose to you when you play. as n approaches infinity, the chance you can fail goes to 0. In this version, where the person can always afford to gamble more, they always make 2. As a lot of you pointed out, the casino also has a maximum bet for this very reason- so everyone has to stop eventually. So this strategy clearly doesn’t work- if you play it lots of times you’ll end up with 0 on average.

But what if you only played a few times? And what if you capped your maximum bet at a very reasonable price- so that you really wouldn’t mind too much if you did lose, even though it does mean you’d lose more often. Let’s try an example. Say you set your maximum times of losing at 4. The probability of that is 1 in 16. So you’d think that you’d be pretty safe if you only played a small number of rounds compared to 16, for example, 4.

You’d lose money unless you won every round. But the probability of that is only around 77%- no were near a guarentee, especially considering how much you stand to lose. Plus the amount you can win is just 8. In my opinion, you’d be way better off getting a job. That solves the paradox entirely for the real world as far as I’m concerned. But there’s still a paradox, in my opinion, mathematically.

Let’s look at the game where the person paying never runs out of money. You might say, well that would require them to have infinite money already. Not really. Each time they play, they only bet a finite amount, and they can always borrow money to play because they’re guaranteed to make it back. You might say, well, there isn’t even an infinite amount of money in the world they could borrow. Sure, but maths doesn’t care about what sort of world we’re in -we could have been in a universe with different physics that allowed the universe to be infinite, and the maths would be the same.

So this is the paradox, mathematically, for me. This random red or black game should have expectation zero. You just feel like that must be true. There’s no way to on average make money from a game of complete chance.

But what’s the expectation of the martingale? Well it’s 2. You always win 2. Or using the mathematical formula, we can see the same thing.

In fact, I can make this number anything I want- for example, say I bet 50 more than my total losses each time- then the expectation is 50. But I can make it worse again, by using this strategy, say you’ve lost a few times so far and it’s the nth round- then bet all that you’ve lost plus 2^n. Look at the expectation value. It’s infinite.

So the real paradox for me is that you can some how take a game that you think should have expectation 0, and then actually make that expectation whatever you want, including infinity, yet when you restrict to only ‘realistic’ cases, you get 0. huh? This paradox showed me that my intuition about expectation values is wrong- there are situations where it breaks down badly. That’s why I really like paradoxes- if the mathematics is sound, it means what’s unsound is something in your own way of reasoning. It forces you to acknowledge that.


Death Valley National Park Road Trip

I wanted to make this video for two reasons. One: to share my Death Valley experience with friends, family, and you. And two: for it to serve as a guide for those who might be planning their own Death Valley trip- a very loose guide, but a guide nonetheless. Death Valley is one of the hottest places on earth in the summer months temperatures range anywhere from around 100 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit -or more. So as summer approaches, my friend Bobby and I decided to squeeze in a short trip before it gets too hot. I’m at Bobby’s and I think he slept through his alarm, which is funny because the last trip we went on he also slept through his alarm.

I was waiting for you to come out so I could record you and then your neighbor came out the other door and I wasn’t paying attention and I was just recording her. From Los Angeles, Death Valley is about a four-hour drive. It doesn’t actually feel that long though because the landscape constantly changes you’ve got green mountains, red rocks, farmland, small towns, deserts, and that kind of cycles until you get there.

The plan for us was to make it a simple two-day trip: drive out Monday, spend the night in a motel, spend all day Tuesday exploring and then drive home in the late afternoon. I had already researched all the places we wanted to see so fitting it in would just be a matter of timing and managing any random adventures we wanted to take. Our first stop would be father Crowley Vista. Bobby’s choice.

It’s where you can see military jets fly through the canyon. Bobby loves planes. Any time we drive past an airport he wants to stop or at least look so watching jets fly through Death Valley was a must for him. We read online that they fly pretty much every day. Some days you get quite a show and others it’s pretty quiet.

We had no idea what we were going to get. So we found a nice spot on the edge of the canyon and waited and waited and then As ready as we were, it happened so fast. It came out of nowhere. There’s really no warning. As soon as we heard the jet and pointed our cameras at it, it was gone.

At this point we were technically in the park but not down in the valley. That’s where most of the sightseeing is… and the heat. Bobby are you ready to feel uncomfortable for the next 36 hours? oh it’s hot 110. This is also where we ran into our first bit of trouble the air-conditioning in my car started blowing out hot air. Not good.

We still had a day and a half left and ninety percent of it was down here. Death Valley is really just a lot of rocks, sand, and dirt, and heat but it’s also got character and that’s what makes it worth exploring. For example we found this ghost town on the very east side of Death Valley called Rhyolite. It was once a prosperous mining town in the early 1900’s.

Now it’s just abandoned homes, a bank, and a very weird art museum. and then there’s the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes. Probably one of my favorite stops of the whole trip.

When you come down the mountains and see them in the distance, they look tiny, minuscule, but when you get up close to them they’re pretty massive. And you can just walk out as far as you want. We spent the night in a little town called Beatty. There’s really not much there: a few motels, a couple restaurants, and a Denny’s with the casino attached to it. In the morning we got coffee at a little diner and then headed back into the valley.

Do you think it’s gonna work? I do not think it’s gonna work as well as it should. Does it feel cold? No. Wait, wait, wait. Yes it does.

It feels mediocre. Bobby. No, that’s better. Yeah that’s working. Success.

Day two was starting off strong. Badwater Basin was number one on my places-to-see list. It’s a giant salt flat, nearly 200 square miles.

It’s also the lowest point in North America at 282 feet below sea level. For reference, there’s Bobby and there’s a sign for sea level. Bobby and I just walked out as far as we could.

We’re still walking. The path is getting a little less traveled, a little rockier. Bobby is leading the way. We went early in the morning to avoid the extreme heat, but it was already pretty bad. Bobby heard that the salt here basically tastes like pink Himalayan sea salt so he wants to test that theory out.

No good? That’s the saltiest thing I’ve ever tasted. I I’d put that on some steamed vegetables.

Okay. Alright, so Bobby and I have gone as far as we’re probably going to go. It’s getting a lot hotter, a lot more nothing around here. We’re gonna take a few pictures and then probably head back.

The plan for day two was the started Badwater Basin and then drive back up, hitting all the major stops as we made our way out the park. For the sake of time, I’ll just show you the highlights. Oh and my air conditioning stopped working again after Badwater. Our final stop was Dante’s view. You drive 20 miles up the mountain and you’re greeted with a beautiful view of the entire Valley. It’s cool, it’s relaxing, and as a nice wrap up to the day we could see our entire trip in the valley below.

So it makes sense that I would end the video here, too, right? Well, I can’t. Because that’s not where this trip ended.

As we were leaving, my car stalled out here. We waited a few minute, started to back up again and then it stalled out again here, in the middle of nowhere. I don’t know much more about cars other than how to change a tire, but I do know being stranded in Death Valley is one of the last places you want to be. There’s no cell service, no relief from the sun, and ranger patrol can be few and far between.

There are a lot of details to this story but I want to keep it as short as possible, so here we go: Basically, we were able to stall out again in front of a restaurant that had the worst wifi ever. Here. I was able to get one text message through to my family in Michigan. My dad’s a car guy and would likely know something. He was able to call the restaurant and talk me through some possible scenarios. Since the car was still driveable, Bobby and I were going to make our way out of the park until we had cell service and were near some type of town so we wouldn’t be completely stranded.

And somehow we made it. Just as we were getting off the highway in Lone Pine the car stalled again, the serpentine belt broke, and I was able to pull directly into a Comfort Inn. Side note: this is Mt Whitney.

One of those is Mt Whitney. One of these. It’s the highest point in the contiguous US. It’s kind of cool that we got to see the lowest and highest points in the same day. Anyway, with shops being closed we rented a room, called the tow truck in the morning, and were towed to Ridgecrest 70-something miles away.

Unfortunately the fix wasn’t a simple belt replacement and the total repair cost was 750 dollars. With all that said I did have a good time. It was a rough ending but we did get to see everything we wanted to and we didn’t get stranded in Death Valley. I’ll take that.


Betting It All on a Spin

Imagine getting the idea one day to sell everything you own, take the money to Las Vegas, and bet it all on a single spin of the roulette wheel. It sounds crazy. The risk of losing is very real, and you could very well be walking away with just the clothes on your back. In fact, the chance of winning in an all-or-nothing red/black bet on an American roulette wheel is 47.3% (48.6% if playing on a European wheel). Ashley Revell of the United Kingdom decided to take that risk when he sold everything he owned and bet the resulting £76,840 (about £105,400 or $164,286 today) on red in Las Vegas during April of 2004. Thirty-two year old Ashley Revell’s journey to risking his life savings in Vegas began, by his own admission, over drinks in a pub with friends.

One friend brought up the idea of betting everything on a single spin of the roulette wheel, and the slightly inebriated group agreed it sounded like a good idea. Despite the conversation being alcohol induced, the next day, the idea still stuck out in his mind. He later told the Telegraph, “I thought what an amazing experience it [betting all of his money] would be. At the time I wasn’t married, I didn’t visit this website. I was completely single.

It was now or never.” It should not be surprising that not everybody supported his plan, and both of his parents opposed the idea. Revell’s father, Mick, told his son that he was a “naught boy”, that he shouldn’t go through with it, and “He should work like all the other kids do.” Ashley spent time convincing them to support him in the endeavor. His father caved first, but his mother took a bit more persuasion before agreeing to support her son.

So he took the next step and began selling all of his possessions and raising a bit of extra cash any way he could. His BMW car, a Rolex watch, golf clubs, and even sentimental items were either sold at auction or during boot (trunk) sales. Some items were harder for him to part with than others, especially soccer trophies and a cricket jumper he received while playing in high school. Afterwards, Revell admitted he regretted selling those items.

Eventually a television crew from the British TV channel Sky One heard about his plan and created a TV mini-series titled Double or Nothing. Tallying it all up, after selling everything and acquiring funds from other sources such as being sponsored to change his name to “Ashley Blue Square Revell” by a UK online bookmaker, he managed to compile a very respectable total of £76,840. With the money in the bank ready to be wired over, he boarded a flight for Las Vegas with the camera crew, his friends, and parents in tow. He didn’t even technically have the clothes on his back at this point as what he was wearing was a tuxedo he rented specifically for the occasion. Plans to place the bet at the Hard Rock Hotel fell through after negotiations broke down with the casino. However, the owners of the Plaza Hotel and Casino seized the opportunity for publicity and agreed to host the roulette game, though directly before he placed his bet told him that they did not advise that anyone, including him, go through with something like this.

Despite the risk, the night before making the life-changing bet, Revell slept well and later said did not doubt his decision to go through with it. Despite the odds technically being slightly against him, he stated, “Thinking back it seems crazy but I was so convinced I was going to win. I was literally going down there to collect my winnings.” However, he still had not decided the answer to an important question: would he bet everything on black or on red? He waited most of the morning for a sign telling him which to choose but none came. In the end, according to Revell, directly after the ball began to spin, “The first thing that came into my head was red, so I just pushed all my chips forward.” With many family and friends there with him watching, along with the audience of Sky One‘s show back home, the ball circled the board before landing on a number- seven, a red color. Revell had doubled his money on one spin, giving him £153,680 (about £210,800 or $328,572 today).

He admitted after the experience that, “… it was a mad thing to do. And I’m thinking back now about what would have happened if I lost. I’d have had nothing to go back to, nothing to wear. But I’d still have my friends, my family, and they’d always be there for me. So they gave me the security to be able to do this.” Unlike most who win big in gambling, Ashley decided that tempting fate once was enough for him.

He declined to bet a second time and cashed in his chips at the table and walked away. As for what happened after, Revell spent a small portion of his winnings on a motorcycle trip around Europe, where he met a girl while in Holland. “I took her back to England with me, we married and now we’ve got two children. You could say I have my bet to thank for finding me a wife. ” One of the many viewers who watched Ashley Revell on the Sky One television program was Simon Cowell.

Cowell was inspired by Revell’s all or nothing bet to create the television game show called Red or Black.


Roulette Systems – Splits – When the Sleeper Awaken

Hi guys welcome to another video. This system is called when the sleeper awakened so we’re talking about dozens here. So what happens?

Is we wait for a dozen to sleep or in other words, not get hit for a minimum of eight spins, and then we we wait till it’s hit, and then we bet two for splits, which is a split, is two numbers. So there’s four chips on four splits. So what would happen is we’ll do a demonstration. So that’s the easiest way to explain it. So we’re going to wait for a dozen to sleep or not hit, so you can either write this down, keep track or after a while, you get to know which numbers are in which doesn’t so you can keep it in your head, which I do.

Okay, let’s get started so we’re waiting for the Dozen one of these dozens to not be hit for six, and that starts the trigger. So, let’s see there, we go zero. Well, that’s out of the way there zero for a while, so keep a track. So at the moment you can see that the third dozen hasn’t been hit for three.

We can include the zero so for four spins so far, five pins, five spins, sorry, including the zero two forces, so I did get hit so now we’re looking. You might want to write this down, but obviously you can see there. The first dozen hasn’t been hit for four, so let that’s the oldest dozen that hasn’t been hit. So let’s track that one so oldest, doesn’t four: five has being hit, has been hit. So now we’re back two dozen three sorry dozen to Tara doesn’t tell he’s been hit. So now we we tracked back to the oldest, which is a so just keep that after while you get used to it in your head, so back to the one is the oldest sorry three back to the let’s hit it back to this third dozen or hits Five six, so the third dozen thirty five was the last number in the third dozen to be hit, so has been six spins since then, where it hasn’t hit.

So now, when it does hit, then we start betting on the column streets. We can call it okay, it’s been here, so it’s been hit in this column. It’S a twenty five.

So what we do? We bet the splits for splits in the other two columns in that dozen. So, as you can see, there there’s a progression system. I like to stop probably at about you, know the tenth one or so because it does get up there because again it’s a progression system, some of my favorite system, but again I’m just showing you all the systems out there and you can decide the ones with The work for you, okay, let’s do now four spins, because after four spins of one unit, then obviously we don’t get our money back.

So then we got ta up the units to another one. There we go well. We hit the first one, which is the best result we can get so we got 14 profit so that completes the system there. Let’S do it again for ten units on the first, so pretty happy with that one.

Obviously, sometimes it doesn’t happen all the time. So this is the risk you take obviously, but I try I try and have the the lowest start with the lowest units. So, let’s find another online casino no deposit bonus that hasn’t been hit for six spins, so we could actually still use this as a trigger, but they’ve all been hit.

Quite recently, so, let’s there we go for the next one. So second dozen hasn’t been here for three four: five: six, okay, so looking at the second dozen, so as soon as it hits, then we bet the four splits there we go. The thirties has hit in the second dozen.

So again we move to the other two columns where it hasn’t hit and put one on fourteen seventeen split: twenty twenty, three fifteen eighteen and twenty one, twenty four. So four four spins one unit, two three four, so I hit on the the fourth spin with one unit that’s before we obviously increase that, as you can see there in the table to two units we still want to. So that’s the minimum there. So this is how this system works.

He has a reasonably do crude, reasonable, reasonable degree of success, but again it’s a system that can go against you quite quickly and you’re betting units do go up quite quickly after the the first five or so losses. Good things about the good thing about the system is that you can actually win quite a lot of Units it does. It does take a bit of time sometimes to get that six.

Six on hit dozen area, the negatives really okay, the units can go up quite quickly. You can have a losing run so I’d call it a medium type risk of system. It does cover eight eight numbers, so you are covering about just over twenty one percent of the board.

So if you look at it that way, one one-fifth chance of success so overall an OK system, not my favorite. But again, I just show you what out there and you can judge for yourself: do some testing and go from there thanks for watching and we’ll be back soon with another strategy and other videos, thanks for watching

Card Games : How to Play Spades

Hi, my name is Charles and I’m here to try to tell you how to play Spades. Spades is what’s called a partnership card game, usually you play with four players and the players that sit opposite each other are on the same team. The purpose of the game is try and take as many tricks as possible. A trick is when each round, each player puts down one card. When four cards are put down that card of the highest value wins whats called the trick. You then pick that trick up and then play more.

At the end of the game, you count up the number of tricks and the player that win, that took the most wins. Now in Spades there are couple of different things that change. The first is that the spades are always that are considered trump, which means that, if you have any of the other three suits in a trick in a spade the highest spade will win the trick no matter what the other cards are. So an ace of hearts for example, wouldn’t take a trick if somebody put a two of spades down.

The other thing that you have in Spades is what’s called bidding, which means that once you’ve dealt out all the cards to the four players, each player has thirteen cards, you pick up your cards and you bid how many tricks that you think you’ll be able to take. So if you think you have a really good hand and out of the total of the thirteen tricks you think you can take five, then you would bid five. Now your partner is also going to bid a number of tricks, and your total contract or the number of tricks that the two of you are going to be able to take, is the sum of that number. Now a couple of interesting things in terms of scoring, at the end of the game you count up the number of tricks you have and you compare it to the contract. If you take ten points for each trick that you take, if you don’t take all of the tricks in your contract you actually lose ten points for each trick that you didn’t get and you don’t get any points for the tricks that you did get.

If you take more than your contract, you get the points for your contract plus one point for each additional trick. So your goal is try and get the number as exact as possible. If you bid zero tricks and you don’t take any tricks, you get a hundred points at the end. And if you and your partner bid zero tricks and you don’t take any tricks, you actually get four hundred points.

You play the game usually until you get five hundred points and sometimes you can even go over what’s called a back hangover, which means that you take, out of you say you’re going to take five tricks and you take seven, so you get fifty-two points and that two points puts you over the edge. That’s a perfectly legitimate way to win. The last thing to say about Spades is that there are dozens of different ways to play, it’s probably the most popular partnership game in the country right now. And so if you have a different way of playing, by all means go ahead and use it. Spades is a great game.

I hope that you enjoy playing it. And that’s how you play Spades.

Chelsea v Liverpool betting tips and odds plus Premier League predictions

Atea-Time top-of-the-table tussle between Chelsea and Liverpool, Jose Mourinho and Paul Pogba in front of the Sky Sports cameras again and Arsenal going for a seventh win on the spin (. Yes, you read that right, ) Sit back and enjoy a super Saturday in the Premier, League.There’s eight games in the English top flight today and we’ve got the best bets for every one. There’S also the top picks across the Football League and north of the border.West Ham must be rubbing their hands while watching the lastest episodes of the Manchester United soap opera, directed by Jose Mourinho, starring, Paul Pogba filmed by Sky Sports and shown on almost every website. From Salford to Singapore, There’s not a lot of love around Old Trafford following the draw with Wolves penalty, shooutout defeat by Derby and the Pogba-Mourinho bust-up, taking a somewhat toxic turn. Meanwhile, the Hammers have been recovering from their shocking start to the season and took another big ( ish ).

It was only Macclesfield step in the right direction by smashing home EIGHT goals in midweek. If this had been a week ago, it would have been much easier to back the visitors.They’ve lost only one of their last 19 Premier League games against West Ham and have been better away from home this season, But with the Pogba row starting to split the camp. It could be worth siding with the hosts. They are 18/5 for the win and 11/2 ( Sky Bet ) to win by a one-goal margin.It’s, 9/10, United or 11/4.

They win by the odd goal. We were raving about Watford when they kicked off the campaign with five straight wins, so it’s only fair that we get excited about Arsenal after they went one better by beating Brentford on Wednesday night, Even the die-hard Arsenal fans or the thousands who dressed up as empty Seats against the Bees wouldn’t have tippedUnai Emery to get them clicking so early in his reign, but he’s doing a grand job and after six wins on. The spin should be backed to make it a magnificent seven. On Saturday, The Emirates Stadium should be a bit busier than it was on Wednesday, and you have to go back more than five years.

For the last time, Arsenal lost at home at 3pm on a Saturday Aston Villa on the opening day of 2013-14. The Gunners are no better than 4/9.They are 17/10 ( Betstars ) to win with both teams scoring and Alexandre Lacazette (. Three in his last four ) is 9/2 ( bet365 ) to open the scoring. There’S, no shame in losing to Arsenal the form they’re in right. Now but Everton were kicking themselves as they left the Emirates Stadium.

Last weekend They were the better team for spells had more shots than their hosts, ( six on target and 10 in total ), but paid the price for poor finishing It stretched their winless run to three games, but the stats lovers among the Goodison Park, faithful, will Expect to get back on track in a fixture, they’ve won 21 times in a row, And yes, that is a record in the English top flight.But. Anyone looking at the stats will also have noticed Fulham’s, Aleksander Mitrovic’s name at the top of the Premier League scoring charts ( alongside Eden, Hazard on five goals ) and his late effort denied Watford at Craven Cottage last time out. Both teams to score looks the best bet here at 8/13, while Mitrovic is 21/10 (, Betway ) at any time, Huddersfield boss, David Wagner, is playing it cool, despite his side, propping up the table with no wins, and the German insisting’there is not much between us and The other teams, the gap, is not big’Well, that’s not strictly true. The gap to Saturday’s opponents is 10 points and should be an unlucky 13 by the final whistle Spurs were better early in the season and in five games since beating Man United.

They haven’t matched the display from that night at Old Trafford, but Huddersfield could present them with a good opportunity. Spurs won both league games last term scoring six and conceding none while the Terriers are still without a home goal. In 2018-19, The visitors are 4/9 or 29/20 ( Bet Victor ) to win without letting one in.They say that how you respond to a setback is crucial and since going down to that shock defeat by Lyon, Man City have spanked Cardiff and Oxford scoring eight goals over Two games without reply: It should be more of the same when 33/1 shots Brighton visit, the Etihad Stadium City are no better than 1/10. Brighton can take some heart from their most recent games against the big guns.

As this season, they’ve beaten Man United and only lost by the odd goal to Liverpool and Tottenham, but there’s only going to be one winner here. A 3-0 victory for City is 6/1, with a few bookies and we’ll be on them to make a fast start and score. The first goal between 11 and 20 minutes at 18/5, When you’re, desperately seeking your first win of the season going up against a team. You’Ve lost five of the last six meetings with isn’t ideal. That’S the situation.

Newcastle are in as Leicester head for St James’ Park. A ground they’ve scored three goals at on each of their last two visits. Another Leicester, win is 2/1, with several bookies and 2-1 to the visitors can be backed at 11/1 ( bet365 ).

The Magpies have lost all three of their home league matches to Spurs Chelsea and Arsenal by that scoreline Wolves can be happy with their start to the season, especially after draws with both Manchester sides. But it’s worth noting that since the opening-day 2-2 draw with Everton they’ve only once in seven games scored more than a single goal, and that was against Sheffield Wednesday in the League Cup. Saints were on two wins two draws and two defeats before going down at Liverpool. Last week – and this looks like the type of game they’ll lose The hosts to edge, it is the shout they’re 17/20 to win 5/2 to win by a one-goal margin. While 1-0 is 11/2, It was all red early on and then a huge swing saw blue, dominate the scoreboard, as the Ryder Cup got off to a thrilling start yesterday, and we could be in for a similar ding-dong battle at Stamford Bridge between the high-flying Blues and Reds of the Premier League Jurgen Klopp, was seeing red this week getting a bit angry after the midweek Cup loss to Saturday evening’s opponents, and the news that Virgil van Dijk is struggling with injury has done nothing to turn his frown upside down, especially with Eden Hazard.

In the form, he’s in Hazard could be the difference again after that wonder goal at Anfield and with home advantage. Chelsea are 15/8 ( Betfred ), while the Belgian is 10/3 in the score-win double

Self-Discipline at the Casino

Casino is a source of entertainment. And just as when you go to an amusement park you do not do things you will be penalized for, in a casino too, you need to take care not to overdo your gambling habits and cause yourself to repent. Simple judgment and level headedness is all that is required to make your experience at the casino an enjoyable one.

The most basic thing in this regard happens to be, do not bet what you can not afford to lose. Fact is many people keep on gambling even after losing their budgeted money at the casino table out of the vague hope that he can recover what all he has lost and instead eventually will be able to win the jackpot. This mentality is an epidemic. In numerous cases it has led to bankruptcy which of course leads to even more horrendous things. One must also remember that having the odds in favor of you for one game does not ensure any bit that winning is a confirmation. It only states that your probability of winning is slightly higher than that of other players. It is for this reason that betting boundlessly is a strict no-no even if you are the odds on favorite. Do not, and I reiterate, do not invest more funds into a gambling game that you have already lost once. If you want to carry on playing, do so only with your winnings if you have any. Too much drinking before a game of gambling is also not advisable as it affects the rational thinking of an individual.

Maintaining your self discipline at the casino is the most sure shot way to an enjoyable gambling experience at a casino. Gambling addiction is a disease, but responsible gambling is thrilling, amusing and hell it’s rewarding like nothing else.

Thanks for reading this article, I hope, you have learned something new. I really enjoy sharing my passion with you. Be sure to check other articles about games and casino. Stay tuned for new materials. Be responsive with your game and your money, Good luck, and don`t forget to have fun!

Think Positive and Win

I was recently interviewed by my son Mike Shippey for a book he is writing on positive thinking. Anyway, during the interview I was reminded of several things that have become second nature to me and I have just taken for granted when it come to casino gambling and thought I might share one or two.

First of all positive thinking or optimism are a key foundation to winning in the casinos, or even in life itself.

Believing you can do something is necessary before you can actually do it.

Now when I say positive thinking or optimism I am not talking about hoping or wishing, I am talking the belief you can actually do something, for me that was winning in casinos.

Long before I started gambling in casinos, while in High School, I read a book by Napoleon Hill called Think and Grow Rich, I can’t tell you a lot about that book since it has been nearly 45 years since I read it, but the one thing I took away from it and have tried to apply to almost everything I do or have done is this, and I will paraphrase:

“The mind has no limitations except those you acknowledge”

Now I admit I have a lot of limitations that I acknowledge, so my mind does have its limits.

But, a few years after reading that book I made my first trip to Las Vegas and was introduced to the world of casino gambling.

I decided that I would not acknowledge any limitations when it came to the games of Craps, Blackjack, and Roulette…I knew the house percentage and odds to win were against me, but those percentages played out to the big numbers, I knew in a short run anything was possible.

I made up my mind I was going to win, and every time I went, or every table I played I knew I was going to win.

Now it didn’t always work out that way, as a matter of fact I lost on many occasions, and some of those trips were a total bust, but I never detoured from my belief that I was going to win.

Now here is the insight I was reminded of, if I was only hoping and wishing to win, then I would have just kept on going and settling for whatever happened.

But truly believing you can do something causes you take action to make that belief happen.

And that is exactly what I did, I studied the games inside and out, I learned which were the best bets to make, which ones to stay away from, I developed a casino money management strategy that included a progression strategy that would allow me to capitalize on winning streaks, rake my winnings and actually take that money home with me.

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Different Types of Slots

The great appeal of slots is the fact that they offer besides fun, we offer the possibility of a jackpot in a very simple, leaving the neglect any skill for the game. Today there are many styles of slots, although we could divide between progressive and basic. When checking this guide to real money online casinos in New Zealand, have access to a wealth of online slots, which are almost the same as traditional slot machines, which are differentiated by technology that they employ.

Multiline online slots are those in which the player must bet on each of the lines you want to enable. In them, the player will have the option to choose to bet on all lines at once or just a few. The larger boat will be delivered only in case of winning by making a bet on all lines.

In many online casinos, slot machines are interconnected, offering a progressive jackpot. The total of the pot is very large, since it is constantly growing due to gambling losses by the players.

On the other hand we find the common slot, which are independent. The amount of money that these machines can only depend on the amount contained therein and the award will be determined according to the table payments to such slots. In this type of online slots, the jackpot is fixed. For bonus slots, it is necessary to align certain symbols to get the bonus, which will allow the player to access a jackpot.

Slots multiple communities are those that fall within the award to deliver will depend on the number of coins bet, in addition consisting of a single payline. The bonus multiplier slots are different from previous ones only by the fact that they add a certain amount of money in the pot. To access it the bettor must play the maximum amount of coins and win.

Thanks to the huge online casino slots game has become increasingly popular. We must not forget also that there are casinos that offer playing slots online for free. This is an opportunity we should not miss.

Thanks for reading! There are plenty more articles on slots rules and tips, the importance of planning your game, and a whole lot of slots vibe. So be sure to check them out, improve your strategies. Remember: when playing, be responsible with your money. I wish you good luck! And don`t forget to have fun!


Safety: Jet skiing operation isn’t a joke!

Jet skis are no longer the little machines they use to be back in the 70s & 80s. Their engines have grown to be very powerful. A 300cc small 2 stroke engine has grown to a 1500cc one, supercharged 4 stroke, capable of producing 250 hp from factory with speeds close to 70 mph. A very dangerous watercraft in the hands of the wrong individual. It’s possible, for an inexperienced first time rider, to go into a jet ski rental place and come out with a 60 mph personal watercraft. The internet comes handy with many web sites offering PWC safety courses and making it easy to learn by watching a PWC safety operation video online!

How old should the jet skiing captains be?

The personal watercrafts industry support a minimum age requirement of 16 to operate a PWC. Lately, most states are requiring training because the 900 pounds personal watercrafts of today, with the big engines, in the hands of untrained operators could become lethal weapons. Some state allow even younger teenagers to go jet skiing by themselves but they are wising up. Like with cars, there isn’t a national age requirement. It’s easy to see what is going to happen to the restriction free jet skiing we have seen in the past.

Should personal watercraft operating license be mandatory ?

Stronger safety regulations and rules will emerge making personal watercraft operating more complicate but, even though it would be safer than ever, the statistic will still show more accident than in the past. The reason for higher numbers will be because more people are buying jet skis every year. To look at the good side of jet skiing, a few years ago a kid, any age, could take out a motorized boat all along. Hey, don’t feel so bad about a 16 year old teenager riding a jet ski by himself, he could been riding an 35 footer offshore racing boat instead. At least, in California, they have to be 16… No bad!

Jet skiing versus Boating…

I was a full size boater for 25 years before getting into personal watercrafts and now, even though I’m almost 60 years old, I can’t get away from riding PWC. Unless you want to carry dry passengers with you, jet skis are easier to use, funnier, cooler and cheaper to buy. It’s a lot easier to use, maintain and store jet skis than it’s with traditional watercrafts. Jetskiing even give you a workout as a side effect. The jet sking sport is growing at a very fast rate. If we all, as a group of PWC enthusiasts, promote safe and responsible riding by example more people will join and use of pwc. Just ask yourself these questions honestly. And these are just the ones that came to mind right off!

Here comes the ugly side of the sport: The Jet skiing accidents.

Picture of PWC racing accident

I was at the 2006 Jet ski World Final Championship event Picture of PWC racing accidentat Lake Havasu, Arizona. In one of races for that day, 2 jet skis collided, while making a closed turn at a buoy right in front of the spectators, I was taking pictures, the jet skiing accident occurred so fast that it isn’t possible to see the exact hitting time. These racers go extremely fast and things get very confusing during the race so, after the hit, a Seadoo RXP that had been doing good was now idling near the unhappy looking racer while many other racing jet skis kept on passing dangerously close to him.

Water rescue patrol at the jet ski racing action…
Before anything could happen to the racer there was a rescuing Rescue jet ski patrol accident Picturejet ski patrol, with a little rescue sled in the back, taking him away to a shore safety area. The water rescuer patrol was provided and paid for by the event organizers. Nowadays you see patrols watercrafts at most lakes, river and beaches. I don’t know how much money the guards make but I think they are very happy!

What about personal watercrafts occupations?

Personal watercrafts are related to many occupations using different types of jet skis depending of the purposes of the jobs. Because their size and maneuverability, jet skis are widely used by the US Coast Guards, river police, and for emergencies by water rescue patrols around the world. A very handy rescuing vehicle, to get in and out, where a full size watercraft wouldn’t be able to reach in. The jet skis small draft make them ideal for landing at the beach and running where water is only a couple of feet deep. In reality, jet skis are mini jet boats that were originally designed only as a toy to be ridden standing up. Later on they were called PWC!

Jetskiing Hollywood as a jetski stunt man.

Another way to make money and enjoy jetskiing at the same time is by finding a jetski stunt job in Hollywood. Money should be really good doing this type of work since the risk involved are higher. Some time they require a whole bunch of jet skis in the production of a movie… Remember the “Water World” movie? It could also be in television series, where they use jet skis regularly… The “Bay Watch” show lasted for a very long time. When it comes to jetskiing, money can go in two different direction. It could be a big money eater or a good, thrilling, and fun money maker!

Is any money in personal watercrafts racing ?

Another jetskiing occupation, or job, is as a PWC racer. PWC racers at start line picture 39But to get the good money you have to reach the very top. The winners of top, professional, races can make money while using their racing jet skis, the money comes from the endorsing sponsors. Famous personal watercraft racer can also make money by setting up related shops, an online PWC store, and from making commercial videos!

You can’t just put all the work on God’s hands…


The Parker Strip & Fast Boats at the Colorado River

The Parker Strip… What and where is it?

The Parker Strip is the section of the Colorado River located between Headgate Rock Dam on the south and the Parker Dam on the north. It is a 2 state area divided by the Colorado River and it is part of the southern Mojave Desert. To the east you will find the sunny state of Arizona. The City of Parker is the closest and the main supplier of products and service to the Parker Strip demands. Along the river banks you find many private vacation resortes with sandy beaches, bars, restaurants, hotels and there is one casino too. If you like: jet skiing, boating, boat racing, water skiing, parasailing, tubing, offroading, fishing, hunting, gambilng, bird watching or just sun bathing, the Parker Strip, with no speed limits and open 24 hour, is the perfect spot for your desert fun in the Colorado River. For the budget conscious, there are quite a few public campgrounds on both sides of the river to accommodate all comers. Many snowbirds, with RVs from the north, enjoy expending the winter months camping in the Parker Strip every year. About 40 miles, north of the Parker Dam, Havasu City in Lake Havasu is home to many international racing events and to the famous London Bridge.

West of the Colorado River

Heading west from the Parker Strip you will get into California, the home of the motion pictures industry. The Parker Strip biggest source of income, for real state investament, come in big part from the great metropolis of Los Angeles, located at only 4 hours away. The Parker Strip area includes many kind of recreational facilities where you can exercise all sort of water sports and desert related activities. Due to some restrictions and the high demand for waterfront properties, prices have skyrocketed to the seven digits mark, and it seems impossible to get a piece of riverfront property. These anecdotes are just part of what keep us going back to the Parker Strip every year, but there are others, many others, interesting things happening at the river all the time. Who knows, one of these days we may see the Queen Mary, converted to a hotel casino, moored right across from the The Foxs or The Sundance giving away buffet breakfasts to attract visitor… Anything and everything is possible at the Parker Strip, Colorado River, USA!

Unofficial boat racing at the Parker Strip

Saturday afternoon is the best time to see the fast boats of the Parker Strip racing each others, flying off the top the wakes and almost tipping over, blasting down the river on a big stamina trip. Once in a while these boat racing get heated up, big time, with too many super fast boats running at the same time in a narrow section of the Colorado River. That is when, looking on from your campsite on the bank of the river, it will make you feel like you are watching a “TV special event”. The big difference here is that it is a free, real life, entertainment show. Heck, you could even take home pictures and videos with you. You could even see some of the most remarkable offshore racing boats in action, their racing skills and records are unknown to you but, that driver could easily be a famous, international racer that, by pure coincidence, happens to be giving you a “free show” at the Parker Strip. You never knows who is who… Anything is always possible at “The Parker Strip” !

Where do I get racing fuel in Parker, AZ?

I did found that the best place, and maybe the only one now, that you can get top racing fuel in the Parker area is at the Parker Oil Produts. By the end of the 2005 Parker Strip boating season I needed some of the high octane fuel and a Seadoo RXP racer, Ric Johnson, told me about this place. I went down to Parker oil Products and met the guys running it. They are good people and treated me right. They were very helpful, skilled and informative about the use of top racing fuel. I got a few gallons of the VP moto 113 racing fuel and the price they charged me was a very good deal as for as I know from checking others sources of racing fuel. My rig appreciated drinking the good stuff and it were showing in my GPS device by been faster than before. I felt like they earned my business in good faith and in gratitude I decide to mention their place in some of my pages related to the fast boats of the Parker Strip. Here is a view of the action at their busy gas station in a short, 2.93 MB file, Windows Media video cliptaken on the 2006 Memorial Day Weekend at Parker, AZ, from across the street. Cheers! A great gas station for top racing fuel!

Amazing racing boats coming… Gone!

It is very thrilling to hear these awesome boats, coming, closer and closer, from the distance and watch how they wrestle the choppy water, as they get close to you, going over a 100 miles per hour and then, 5 seconds later, they are all gone very quickly, just as they came. Dont be surprised when you awake to a big rumble, loud sound from their big and supercharged engines, in the middle of the night but, you would not see them because they were racing and the whole thing just happened too fast for you to catch it. If luck is in your side, and it happens to be a full moon out, you may be able to see a very spectacular night scene of boat racing at 100 mph. Seeing this amazing boat raceat the Parker Strip became one my most treasured memories ever.

The new “Party Boats” are all over the river

At the Parker Strip you will see all type of boats. From nflatables boats, canoes, fishing boats, and houseboats to the 40-footers offshore racers, potoon boats and river parasail boats. A very popular boats at “The Strip” are the Eliminators, lots of them out there. You can see plenty of the new party boats too, they are pretty, very fast and have a lots of dancing space in their open deck. During weekend evenings you can see people dancing in the boat while floating down the river but, most of the time, you will only hear the music from their late night, loud, onboard party. Many thanks to the owners of the boats shown here for the great shows they put up. We will see you out there as soon as its get hot again, folks!

About the author Papoloko has been camping and boating at the Parker Strip, Colorado River, since 1992.



Summer Months Camping at Crossroads

We have been going to the Parker Strip since 1992. For the first 8 years we had a Formula boat. The new Millenium came and brought the jetski obsession and we just keep going at it today. We expend mosts weekend in the summer months camping, kicking back, at Crossroads Campgrounds. We always enjoy the company of the host, Gene and his wife. These folk are wonderful, good people, from Texas. Camping in the desert, by the river, with the jet ski near by in the water is living “The High Life” for old timers and river rats like us. Check it out and you will get in love with it.

Have you seem a donkey lately?
There are quite a few photo albums here. Click on the links to see the Parker Strip Fast Boats. Go meet my old Formula boat alias “GINAII”. Take a pick at the “Crossroads Campgrounds”, see Crossroads Host, 2000 ultra 150, Lesharo RV, “Old Jet ski”, and last, there is one of an old desert donkey. He was very funny and we gave him the name “Burrito King”. He use to hang around our campsite at Crossroads waiting to eat carrots from our hands. Thinking back on it now, I just realize that we never knew his last name.

Meet our “Little Davey”
If you have kids I will suggest a visit to our grandson, “Little Davey Web World” web site. He’s 2 years old and growing up very fast!!!. I created a small website for him. So far it only have one photo album but as soon as I get some free time I will be loading more pictures, some videos and kids games. You can meet and find out more about our grandson “Little Davey” at his website.


Jetski and Thrill at the Parker Strip

Author: Ashley Barnard
Jetski – try out the thrill of jet skiing The idea of sitting (or standing) on a craft that is designed to provide the rider with the thrill and fun of riding a snowmobile, only on the open water, is either: a) nerve-wracking, b) old hat, or c) something that “I’ve got to try before I die!”

We’re talking jet skiing, folks, and for those who already know, the thrill that comes with cruising on the water’s surface at speeds that can exceed 50 MPH (80 km/h) is second to none. For those who have yet to discover this aquatic nirvana, you’re only a rental at your local beach away from getting in on the action.

Jet skis are, quite simply, not skis at all but rather watercraft that operate on a skiing premise. That is, they skip along the water’s surface, much like snow skis would do on the slopes. They are driven by gas-powered engines, some as strong as 150 horsepower.

Some jet skis enable the driver to sit down, and with a person riding ‘shotgun’. Other units are meant to be operated by the driver in a standing-only position. In either instance, you are in command of a powerful watercraft that will have you the envy of beachcombers and boaters alike.

Power and fun aside, these aren’t toys. Anything that provides the thrill and excitement that jet skis do must be operated with training and attention to your surroundings. Knowing at which speed to safely operate the craft, versus how many other small crafts are on the water, who might be water skiing, what natural and man-made obstructions may exist, etc., is not only important but could ultimately save you from significant injury or even death. Proper safety equipment, such as life jackets and helmets, are also required, and rules to this end vary depending on where you are using your jet ski, so make sure you know the local law before going out on the water. It is estimated that operator error is responsible for about 95 percent of all jet-ski accidents.

If all safety regulations and rules and items of common sense are adhered to, and if speed and open water and personal watercraft are three things that go together well in your mind’s eye, look no further than jet skiing to provide you with the time of your life the next time you find yourself at the lake For information about this sport then please feel free to visit my site at

About the author:
Ashley Barnard is a great outdoor explorer and apart from climbing mountains around the world he also enjoys jet skiing for a brief insight into jet skiing.


Formula Boat Story

My Formula boat…
This is the story of my ’82 Thunderbird Formula boat, better kown as Gina II, alias The Pirate’s Ghost. She was 20 feet in length and 8 feet wide with a deep V hull that made her an ideal, rough water, runabout boat. It was, originally, a Miami, FL, boat and according to the old owner, she had been used in 1982 to smuggle drugs and illegal emigrants up the Miami River By the beginning of the nineties, abused and in need of repairs, it had been stored out of circulation for a few years. It was then that we meet, feel in love and took our new boat home.

A yellow Formula boat nicknamed Gina II

We bought the Thunderbird Formula boat in ’91 at Miami, Fl, and in the spring of ’92 she was relocated to Los Angeles, California. She went through a complete and mayor transformation in body and power. She was baptized and named Gina II to honor my daugther Gina. The boat hull was redesigned with a new shape and her original 260 hp engine was replaced with a beef up, custom made, high performance 325 hp engine. This custom transformation took over one year to complete and was done by Papoloko in ’93. Because the new looks and the increase in power, very soon, she earned the respect of other boaters at the local lakes but, because she was now running higher speeds, the lakes authorities noticed it and gave me some speeding warnings. That was the beginning of the end at the local lakes. There was always some hotshot boat wanting to know how fast she really was.

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Formula boat found a new home
We went looking for a new playground for our Formula toy, for a new home with more freedom to play. We enjoyed Lake Mead, Laughlin, Lake Havasu, Blythe and she even expended afew months moored at Marina del Rey in California. Overall, we did caught many great memories out of those temporary homes and at the end, the Parker Strip was the one she would be calling home at The Colorado River. From the year 1994 to about the end of 1999 she enjoyed a lot of action, in the summer months, right around the Empire Landing Campground at the Parker Strip, Colorado River, which was the place where we used to stay on all our camping trips.

Party time, full moons and the Parker Strip
Our Formula boat, the Gina II, usually expended the winter months resting at a near by storage yard called The Right Spot, a very covenient place that was 2 minutes from the launching ramp and another 2 minutes from the Empire Landing Campground. We had many parties at the campsites in this park, every other weekend, drinking and dancing right on the water with the full moon shining in the sky until 3 or 4 am. There is nothing like taking the boat out, on a full moon nite, and just blast down the river, full throtle, with the light of the moon making the whole river alive. That’s one of the beauty of the Parker Strip, you can enjoy your boat 24 hour a day. It’s a shame that full moon only happens once a month. My WARNINGS to new boaters driving the Parker Strip at night time, some drunk boater or whatever, could be driving without the navigation lites on and could create an accident for you even if you follow all the rules… Alcohol and driving don’t mix. Be careful when driving at night.

Formula boat… The thrill was gone!
Since we had her plenty in very rough, deep sea, water around the Catalina Island, out of Los Angeles, and she did uphold herself cruising playing with the fast and very expensive boats of the Parker Strip at the Colorado River too, we feel there was nothing new anymore… The thrill was gone. By the end of ’99 we had grown tired of boating and camping so, we decided to take her back to Los Angeles. We guessed, back then, that we were becoming too old for such activities. Of course, we were wrong. We did went back to the Parker Strip with the New Millennium, but we did not brought the Formula boat to the Parker Strip, instead, it was a jetski, the Lucky Ghost, the one that went back with us to the Parker Strip. But, hey, that is a whole different story.

My Formula boat old home… The Parker Strip
To end the Gina II story I will say that she has just been setting for five years with a lot of memories from the Parker Strip to her credit but with no action at all. Parked outside, in the open, without any maintenance during all these years, her body and interior has deteriorated bad. I forgot to put the canvas cover on her for two year. I’m very sorry, that was my own stupid mistake and it should cost me plenty to restore her if I ever want to ride her again. Maybe one day in the future I will have the need to feel her power, do the whole thing over one more time and race down the river again but, up to today, all that I can do is to give her a web home and show some of her memories to the others boats enthusiasts of the world. If I ever bring her back to the new millennium and have her restored, you can rest assured that the Thunderbird Formula boat, better kown as Gina II, alias The Pirate’s Ghost, will be back at her old home… The Parker Strip in the Colorado River

About the author:
Papoloko has been boating the Parker Strip, Colorado River, since ’92.


A Peaceful Pretty View..

A good video that you can watch here is the one we called “Crossroads at Dawn”. This one will give you an idea of what “The Parker Strip” area look like at 6 AM, in a cloudy day, from our campsite at Crossroads Campgrounds. It’s was very peaceful with a pretty view but I had to get up very early to catch it on film. To see the Colorado River, with the hills as background, when the sun is coming up is just magnificent.

They get old because…
Another one to see is a video clip named “Gene Video”. It’s about a master of the camping life having fun in the river. Here you will meet the Crossroads Campgrounds Host. Gene Rogowicz, the host and my friend, went riding my Ultra one afternoon. Can you imagine? At his age, with all the white hair, to go riding a highly modified sky in a choppy river. This video should remind everybody that people don’t stop playing because the get old but they get old because they stop playing.

Buckshot50s Carburetor to go faster
Don’t forget to watch the videos “68.7 Ultra 150” and a longer clip that was taking the first time that the ultra was running good after its carburetors gave us trouble for a year, it’s the “Jet ski Run”. You will see me in action, riding the Ultra 150 after I installed a set of Buckshot50s Carburetors to go a little faster. Check them out and for a little time you could feel like you are the driver. I have many more video clips of us at the river that I want to publish but they need to be edited for internet use. I haven’t had time to do it yet.


2000 Kawasaki Ultra 150 Jetski modifications The Lucky Ghost II Story

There had to be more excitement
We came across this 2000 Kawasaki Ultra 150 jetski by the end of summer in the year 2014. At that point in time I was mainly running a couple of big and heavy 3-seaters jet skis. I was getting bore and finding no excitement in the ride anymore. Somehow it felt almost like riding in my old Formula boat, safe and secure but I couldn’t feel the big rush anymore. While conducting a search with google for “personal watercraft” I found a forum dedicated to the Kawasaki Ultra 150 jetski, it was run by Skiworx Watercrafts Performance. Reading at this forum got me very excited about this little “Speed Devil”.

Kawasaki Ultra 150 – The facts

I learned at this board that the Ultra 150 had been the fastest factory stock jetski available from 1999 to 2003. Their top speeds of 63 to 66 miles per hours had been verified either using global positioning devices or radar guns. I also learned that the speed that shows up on most stock speedometer that come with the new jetski, from factory, was far from being the actual and real speed. The hardcore riders call them dream_meter. You most remember not to go by what the stock speedometer readout shows when comparing to other riders. Many riders at the lakes swear to 80 mph when in reality their jetski can only go 55 GPS mph. When making speed claims, you should use either a radar gun or a global positioning device to get a close to acurate speed read out, so the riders that really know the sport will respect you in an argument.

Free knowledge just for the reading
At the Kawasaki Ultra150 Forum I found many raiders related to the regional and national racing circuit and they had invested a lots of time and money in R&D, Research and Development, to make their racing Jetskis go faster and be able to win at the races. From this forum (Database of knowledge I call it) it became evident to me that the Kawasaki jetski was a very reliable and dependable high performance machine. Even though, I did owned 3 jetskis and had been using them for 4 year, I discovered that I didn’t knew much about PWCs and that it was time to go back to school. So, I expended many hours, every day, until I had read everything at that forum regarding the famous Kawasaki Ultra 150 jetski and, to get a wider view, I also did a research for it in the internet.

Seadoo RXP took title from Kawasaki Ultra 150
The bottom line was that by 2004 Seadoo had come out with their new monster machine, the 2004 RXP. This new ski was bigger and heavier than the Ultra 150 but it came out with a super charged engine capable of producing 215 HP. The accepted and official top speed was between 66 to 69 miles per hours on radar. The Seadoo RXP had taken the title from the Kawasaki Ultra 150 as it was the fastest “factory stock” personal watercraft available in 2004. This “Monster Engine” had the potencial, with some major modifications, to deliver big power and unbelievable speed. All that was needed, was to get the aftermarket industry to start producing new parts.

I was a 2000 Kawasaki Ultra 150 owner
I have never been a circuit racer but I like to get to from point A to point B as fast as I can without breaking the bank. Right around that time, I came across a good deal on a highly modified 2000 Kawasaki Ultra 150, since it was already modified and it was suppose be able to go 68 to 70 GPS mph according to what I had learned at the ultra forum, I went for broke and bought it. The seller had claimed 74 mph as this ultra 150 top speed but, I knew that was going to be close to impossible with the amount of modifications done to this jetski. When I got I was hoping for 70 GPS mph but a 68 would have been OK with me. Wow… Congrats! I had, finally, become the proud owner of a fast and highly modified Kawasaki jet ski