12 June 2019

Mount Robson & Neighbourhood (1996) - Part One

Mount Robson from Berg Lake Trail 1996 - Photo By V.A. McMillan

Mt Robson from Berg Lake Trail July 1996 - VAM
 July 1996 was my first hike along the Berg Lake Trail, the most popular trail system of the Canadian Rockies, or so I am told. I had also heard that Mount Robson is a very difficult mountain to photograph without having the peak stuck in a cloud. I therefore find myself to be very fortunate to have enjoyed seeing the exposed peak for 6 of 7 days during this first journey. 

Basecamp was established near the warming hut at the far end of Berg Lake. Established tent sites were being constructed at other sites along the Berg Lake Trail, however, the Berg Lake Campground had not yet been so constructed. I found a favourable site on the far side of Toboggan Creek, while others in my party pitched their tents closer to the warming hut.

I found the variety of trails that radiate from the warming hut to be exceptional. From easy strolls across Robson Pass to Adolphus Lake in Jasper National Park, to strenuous hikes like Snowbird Pass (around 20 KM's return)  or up Toboggan Creek to The Cave. Or the moderate Hargreaves Glacier - Mumm Basin Loop (around 15 KM's for the loop).
Mount Robson from Snowbird Pass Trail July 1996 - Photo by V.A. McMillan

Mt Robson & Berg Lake from Hike to Mumm Peak
Left to Right. Mt Anne-Alice, Steamboat Ridge & Mumm Peak - July 1996 Photo by V.A. McMillan
One thing is certain, there are no bad views around here. In every direction there is something to see and capture on film. Mount Robson has so many good sides and poses so well. My only complaint was not knowing how many rolls of film to bring. Which, I did not bring enough. 

My personal greatest achievement was reaching the summit of Mumm Peak (9718') and being able to capture the photo of Mount Robson (last photo on this post.)

I will endeavour to add at least two more parts to this series on Mount Robson over the summer.

Until next time.....Take a Hike!!!


Mount Robson from Summit of Mumm Peak - July 1996. Photo by V.A. McMillan

17 May 2019

Collective Capitalism, A Concept

Stonehenge, Salisbury Plain, England
Capitalism, the root of all evil; according to every socialist or communist who has ever stood upon a soap box. 

Socialism, is communism for slow learners; according to many meme's on the internet.

Communism, the system where everyone is equal....except those at the top who are more equal. 

Every political theory ever presented to Earthlings has its flaws and no system has ever been used in its perfect form. In theory, all these political systems work. However, they all overlook a very fundamental flaw....humans. We humans are not perfect, and we tend to corrupt all that we touch; intentional or not.

Today, I want to explore capitalism, identify the primary flaw and then present a possible solution. Until, the peoples of this planet decide to evolve above a money based economy, it is best to present a solution that will work with the systems we are currently familiar with. Capitalism and the free market economy is a fair, honest and open system of commerce. Fellows like Adam Smith (The Wealth of Nations 1776) go it great detail explaining how the free market economy is the best system to operate by. The greatest flaw of capitalism is the perceived unfair success of the very few at the expense of the many. Of course, if you switch your point-of-view, this flaw or weakness, is also the greatest strength; if you are willing to work hard, you can enjoy unlimited success and wealth. So, does this mean the people who cry the loudest about how unfair capitalism is are also the laziest people, not willing to work hard for their personal success?? Sounds harsh, but it may have some truth to it. Humans are lazy in general and unless motivated, they are willing to accept less if they can stay in their comfort zone. Those willing to take risk or are self-motivate will always get more than those who are not willing to put in any effort. To this end, capitalism is a good system, it is self-regulating; the more effort you put in, the greater your rewards. However, there is but one lingering flaw.......even the most successful company or corporation, did not make all their success without help. 

Let us explore the idea of collective capitalism. First, let me define collective capitalism - as a system of free market economy that differs from classic capitalism, in that a group objective is at the core of success, instead of an individual objective. Instead of the blood, sweat and tears of a thousand employees making a single owner rich beyond their dreams; have a successful company where the owner makes a healthy profit and lives very comfortably and all those employees who made the success possible get a greater share of the profits. In this way, the employees are finding it worth their while to give their blood, sweat and tears to the company and the company rewards them for their sacrifice. There is a symbiotic relationship in companies that are successful - the company and the employees need each other for success. When greed enters the relationship it skews the symbiotic relationship out of balance/harmony and the company fails. It does not matter where the greed comes from top or bottom. The skewing will rob the symbiotic relationship of the synergy that generated the success.

Through the life cycle of a company it would be difficult to assign a fair division of income to labour. However, in the beginning, it would be reasonable to expect that risks are high, revenue are not, but if the employees believe in the potential of where the company could go, you have the nucleus of synergy to go to great heights. In the early days, if their is great leadership, great company vision and great employees who believe; the potential for success is very high. When this company succeeds in a collective capitalism environment, the more the company succeeds, the more those who make the success possible will be rewarded. As success can ebb and flow, I would suggest a wage & profit sharing formula as being a fair method of rewarding the employees. In the start, wages might not be as high as they will be later when the company is making success and profits. Risk is thus shared by those who get in early. The owner risks everything to make success and so do the employees who join early for the future payoff. As success increases, wages should be high enough to pay for life and keep staff turnover to a minimum. Whether the company calculates profits quarterly or annually, a possible formula for distribution could look like this: The Owner is paid 25% of the profits, 25% are reinvested in the company infrastructure, 25% are saved and 25% are shared with the employees. With a wage plus profit share program, the more successful the company, the more the employees are rewarded. In theory, the more you are rewarded, the more effort you are willing to put into continued success. This works right up until you have enough. Once you have achieved enough, the motivational power of money ends and then time becomes the motivator. In that I want more time off to live life with my enough money. If this is respected by the company, then everyone works hard, plays hard and lives well. 

This is not limited to working at the company level (single company, single location). With the right leader, this could work at the corporate level (single company, multiple locations), community level (multiple companies, same location), county level (multiple companies, multiple locations), country or continent level. This is merely the process of working together to achieve common goals. It worked in Canada during WWII. It could work again. We just need leaders with vision and employees who believe and a system to reward everyone's efforts fairly. Reduce the wage difference ratio between those at the top of the company and those who are working hard at the bottom. 

Together everyone achieves more = TEAM. This acronym is flaunted at almost every team-building exercise, ever. If we can curb greed, just a bit and share just a bit more; the whole cycle will grow. When more employees make more money, they buy more, when they buy more, more companies need to hire more and the cycle grows. 

That is my simple solution to make capitalism better. 

Until next time...create solutions, not problems!


30 April 2019

Hierarchy of Thought

Gabriola Island, Near Nanaimo, BC
This will be a short post to get an idea out of my head.

The Hierarchy of Thought

Level One: Random Thought (Ignorant Individual)

Level Two: Thinking Within the Box (Educated Conformist)

Level Three: Thinking Outside the Box (Educated Individual)

Level Four: Understanding, There is no Box (Free Individual)

As a free thinker, I ponder weird stuff from time-to-time. Recently, the level of thought, has been on my mind. In typical, human fashion, I needed to make it organized. A few years ago a friend, whom we shall call F, introduced me to the forth level of thought; there is no box. Before this, I prided myself on be able to think outside the box. But, this enlightenment makes total sense once you take a moment to think deeper about the thought process. Shall we......

Starting with Level One: Random Thought. I have identified this as the process used by individuals before they are indoctrinated in the education system. A quick Google search defines ignorant as: "lacking knowledge or awareness in general; uneducated or unsophisticated." Thus, the individual has not be programmed into the norms of our conditioned society. This is not a value judgement of good or bad. It is merely a fact. This is why young children can say the most outstanding things, without a social filter kicking in to suppress their thoughts. This is free expression without cognitive control.

Level Two: Thinking Within the Box. This is the final efforts of a state run educational system. The finished product is a productive employee; who goes to work, pays taxes and gets along with fellow co-workers. This person is conditioned to be satisfied to work within the system and NOT to rock the boat. A society of conformists is a happy society. Everyone just gets along. Although, more educated in the social norms of society, the persons are not actually thinking for themselves at this point. They are very conscious of their reputation and what others think about them. This population is easily manipulated and controlled by authority figures. Those in power, do not want this population to become self-confident and self-thinking, because they would become infinitely harder to control.

Level Three: Thinking Outside the Box. For those who can think for themselves and see the short comings of a controlled society. Some folks will never reach this level, however, a small percentage of society will have the self-confidence and curiosity to want to know more than what they learned in school. They will question everything, until the find an answer that satisfies them or provides the truth. These are smart people who are not easily conned by the system. They are brave and strong and not easily intimidated by authority figures. This confidence sets them apart from the social norms and thus they are shunned by the conformists and belittled by the authoritarians. However, for many functions in designing or problem-solving, these free thinkers are needed because their thoughts are not controlled by the system. Having said that, although capable of thinking for themselves, they are not yet enlightened enough to escape the structure of the societal thinking patterns. 

Level Four: Understanding There Is No Box. To come to this level you truly are thinking freely. No longer do you need to contradict the rules and structure of societal thinking patterns, you understand those rules and structure were created to keep everything in a state of order; but they are not actually necessary. Here is where free thinking really takes place. You are so far beyond what the authoritarians can comprehend, they now consider you a threat to society. You are immune to oppression dictated from on high. You can see with clarity and you recognize oppressive behaviours from a great distance. You belong to a minority of strong-willed and strong-minded persons. You value your freedom and liberty above all other things in life. You want to be left to your own devices to live your life in peace. 

That gets the major points on paper. I may edit this in the future, as my thoughts become more refined on this topic.

Until next time.....Don't let anyone else do your thinking for you!


20 April 2019

Frank Lake Weasel

Frank Lake 18 April 2019
Well Spring has sprung around here, for the moment anyway, and with fair weather holding I took a drive out to Frank Lake. Frank Lake is a large swamp, aka wetlands, East of the town of High River, Alberta on Highway #23. A very large population of birds call this area home. I am not a birdwatcher, however, a day out to snap a few photos of whatever scenery or wildlife I might capture was enough reward to get me out into the sunshine. There were a few vehicles and a few more people out at the Frank Lake Bird Observation Blind parking area. No school groups or Scouts groups today.
Beady Eyes of a Long Tail Weasel at Frank Lake
Shallow Waters Near the Frank Lake Bird Observation Blind

Weasel at Frank Lake 18 April 2019
There were not millions of birds in the area, but there were enough to keep those with cameras happy. I had no expectation of what I might see, so, I could not be disappointed. I had seen a Great Blue Heron on a small slough close to home a week ago, so who knows what I might see at Frank Lake.

Close to the parking area, near the path that led to the observation blind I saw many shore birds wading in the shallows near shore. A big, fat Muskrat was swimming under the boardwalk leading to the observation blind, occasionally, swimming out into open water. 
In the reeds near the boardwalk, you could hear the ducks of some variety paddling about. I did snap a pic of a Black Scoter, and if that is not what it is, remember I am not a birdwatcher by trade. Red-wing Blackbirds, Geese and Herring Gulls also inhabited the area.
Weasel Changing To Summer Colours, Frank Lake 2019
While walking towards the water inlet, I took a few moments to see if anything would swim close to shore to photograph. While sitting on a rock on shore, I looked over my right shoulder and a pair of beady eyes stared back at me. Carefully, I swung my camera inland. And the head holding those beady eyes poked up over the bank 20 feet away, again. It was a member of the weasel family. The gophers nearby were chirping away, obviously, unhappy with this unwanted neighbour. 

Weasel Playing in the Grass at Frank Lake 18 April 2019
I have not had a camera handy the few times I have seen a weasel in the wild, so I endeavoured to snap as many pictures as I could. I was not aware that weasels called Frank Lake home. 

Without, a massive zoom lens for my camera I was limited to what detail I could get in my photos. Thankfully, once cropped this little fellow shows up pretty well. With the dark patch on the back of the neck, I assume, this little weasel is changing from winter colours to summer colours. It did have a black-tipped tail and the tail was almost as long as the head and body. My online search leads me to believe this is a Long-Tail Weasel. A species native to Alberta. 

I followed the weasel for about 15 minutes as it bound across the prairie. I watched as it chased a flock of Herring Gulls to flight near the water inlet. I am sure with so many birds in the area, there must be a few nests with eggs for the weasel to steal. The last I saw, the weasel was leaping and bounding across the prairie stirring up the gophers. 

Until next time....Get out and bring your camera!!


Possible Black Scoter in the Reeds of Frank Lake
Weasel at Frank Lake 18 April 2019

Pretty Sure This is a Long Tail Weasel at Frank Lake 18 April 2019

Weasel at Frank Lake 18 April 2019

Weasel at Frank Lake

23 March 2019

The Coming Wars Between Peoples - A Conspiracy Tale

Remember What Freedom Looks Like

The Global Elites are in state of global concern. Their war everlasting is fraying apart, terrorism was a good instrument to exploit by the elites, no nation states to pin down and wipe out, only a bunch of phantoms who rise up and attack before fading into the background like the smoke from a campfire drifting on the evening breeze. Hard to defend against, even more difficult to identify and link the individual terrorists together. The bag of tricks employed by the Global Elites are anything but shallow and limited. 

Unfortunately, for the residents of planet Earth, when plan one is not succeeding as expected the elites change directions and deploy a new tactic. As, I mentioned in previous posts, the Global Elites do NOT care about you, your friends, your family and certainly not about me. They will use ANY method to achieve their plan of world domination. With the continued stone-walling in North America to any attempt at a general arms roundup from the average citizen, the elites had to change direct and hit hard where no one was expecting.....Christchurch, New Zealand. New location, new victim same plan, the same expected outcome. The Global Elites do NOT care, religion, no religion, nice or naughty, if you are convenient to their end game YOU ARE A TARGET. The elites have exploited the Islamic Extremists as a convenient bad guy and fall guy. This convenient relationship is purely one way, the Global Elites are fostering and enabling terror groups who are easily misled - Islamic Extremists have their own agenda and they are being hoodwinked into believing when this is all over they will win and the Global Elites will be their slaves. 

No matter who you are no one deserves to be the target of an attack. Those recent victims in Christchurch, NZ, they did not deserve it. The Muslim believers find themselves in a tough position, if they speak up against the Islamic Extremists and their Caliphate, and the Extremists win, the believers who did speak against the Caliphate will be executed or become slaves to the Islamic Extremists. If these Muslim believers do not speak out the rest of the world views their silence as quiet support for the Islamic Extremists. This is chaos. Chaos is the weapon of the Global Elites. These people are being played and so are the rest of us on this planet. 

Weak minded people are easily exploited and manipulated by the Global Elites. To the government of New Zealand and your recent Executive Order limiting law abiding citizens from previous  held firearms privileges, shame on you!! Your behaviour is helping the Global Elites disarm the lawful, to enable their enslavement.   

New Zealand Order in Council Pg 1
Making laws to punish law abiding firearms owners for the crimes of criminals DOES NOT make your streets, cities or countries safer! Make laws that punish criminals for committing criminal acts against your citizens and hold the criminals accountable for their actions. If you cannot keep firearms out of the hands of criminals, what makes you think keeping firearms out of the hands of the law abiding will help?? Or, is there a bigger plan in play and all governments of the world are subservient to the the Cabal controlled by the Global Elite?? If that is true, these truly are sad days and the puppets are playing their roles well. Shame on you!! The citizens of your countries voted you into power to protect them from the big, bad world and you are caving in and showing a lack of leadership or awareness of the world around you. This government order does not protect the peoples of New Zealand from future attacks! It only shows those who will attack to know the citizens of New Zealand are less likely to be able to defend themselves. 
New Zealand Order in Council Pg 2

As I said earlier, we are all being played and manipulated by the Cabal controlled by the Global Elites. Of course, few will read what I am writing and fewer still will afford my words any weight. When manipulation occurs above the nation state level, providing unequivocal proof is rarely a possibility. However, freedom of expression allows me the right to express how I am viewing the world around me and I get to share that with you. If you think I am wrong, that is okay, you have that right. Similarly, if my observations appeal to you, you can chose to believe what I am saying. Or, you can use your own resources to start to question what is going on around you and make your own decision on the state of affairs in this world of ours. It is not too late to wake up and stand up to the Global Elites. They are not done yet. They are working hard to bring down everything we hold dear to our experiences on planet Earth. They cannot be bought. They cannot be coerced. But, if the peoples of this planet stand up, together, we can deny them our world.
New Zealand is not the only location to be facing the heat lately. Back in good old Canada, new stories are starting to surface around the SNC Lavalin affair. Brian Giesbrecht's Who Pressured Whom? article in C2C Journal (11 March 2019) ( Who Pressured Whom ) opens some eyes on backroom dealings in Canuckistan. This article is well written and researched, and suggests that former Attorney General Wilson-Raybould may have been making her own power play for Canada, in favour of the First Nation's Peoples. As many Canadians are aware, the old deals & treaties to obtain Canada from the previous owners, were a raw deal. But, at the time neither side negotiated in good faith or open honesty, so, It is not surprising that the First Nation's Peoples will try to re-negotiate the deals and treaties. It is unlikely, this process will be resolved quickly, unless there are some major backroom deals that Canadians are not informed of, until after the deal is done. There is enough information in this article to cause concern for the future of Canada and its citizens. What happens if we end up with Canada and 600 First Nations within Canada?? This is chaos. This is the weapon of the Global Elites. I am confident that our current PM is in league with the Cabal and he is a junior member of the Global Elites. His rise to power in the last election and the focus of his term on projects that divided Canadians instead of uniting us, is proof enough for me. So, is Canada on the eve of an internal emergency and a state of civil war?? Only time will tell. If we are, then we are likely following a path experienced by Rhodesia and South Africa, before us. 

This chaos, is not an accident. A Cabal of very powerful people, working for an even more powerful Overlord(s) is trying to take control of our whole planet. We the citizens of planet Earth are in their way. They do not need all of us, only a select few for breeding more workers, servants and other slaves. They do not care what method is employed to reduce our numbers. The faster we kill each other off, the less work they will be forced to do to take what's left. Now is the time to say "No!" you cannot have our planet without a fight. Start to learn what is going on around you. Start to learn who are the bad guys/gals and who are our friends. It is not too late. Remember, the three top signs that the Cabal is taking control: 1) Removing firearms from private citizens, 2) Controlling or shutting down the Internet & 3) Restricting the freedom of expression. Other restrictions will quickly follow those three. Currently, the huge volume of privately owned firearms in North America, keeps the Cabal from getting out of control. But, things are changing quick these days and the Cabal is attacking from many angles, trying to score a firearms roundup in North America. Once that is achieve the rest of the world will be easy pickings. Stay alert, stay aware, stay alive.

Until next time,
Write a good tale!


6 January 2019

Building a Study Station

Study Space
Welcome to the new year, 2019!! 2018 ended with very few posts on Mountainman's Mantra.  Life happens, and somedays posting on the Blog does not happen. 

Here's to new years and new adventures!! In 2019, I will be starting a new adventure. I am going back to school. Time to upgrade. I need a degree to stay competitive in the labour market. So, it is back to the books for me.

Laptop & Tablet on VIVO Mounts

Laptop & Tablet Ready for Class
I will be getting a Bachelor of Emergency & Security Management Studies degree from the Justice Institute of British Columbia. Thankfully, they have a program that allows for full-time online studies. Thus, I do not have to move and pay for two residences at the same time. Phew!!

So, I have had to do a wee bit of modifying around the place to get ready for the start of classes. 

Custom sewing projects will have to go on hold for a few years, as that space is now my classroom. I purchased a VIVO laptop and monitor stand to make my desk more efficient. Only one issue, my tablet did not want to mount to the monitor mounting plate.
Close-up Of  Modified VIVO Monitor Mounting Plate
That required a little more research and another purchase of a VIVO Wall Mount Bracket. This new bracket was meant for an AppleTV or similar unit. It was also meant to be screwed into the wall NOT to be used with their monitor mounting plate. No matter. I can make a solution happen. Both, the laptop/monitor stand and the wall bracket were made from top quality materials and were very well made. The solution was quite easy, just drill a extra hole in the monitor mounting plate. That was it. I used the same style #8-32 screws and purchased some nyloc nuts to work with the #8-32 screws to attach the wall bracket to the monitor mounting plate. Now my tablet is mounted exactly where I need it.....above my laptop screen. This will allow textbooks to be open on the tablet while I conduct my lessons on my laptop. 

With the technical equipment issues resolved, next project was constructing a portable enclosure around my desk area to limit how much distraction I will cause my family while I am studying.

The local hardware store set me up with 6 lengths of 11/16" x 8' square molding to build a simple frame and 3 hinges to join the frames together. I already had a large piece of grey fabric which I upholstered the frames with. Now, my study area has a nice backdrop in case I need to do any video chats with classmates or instructors. I am pleased with the final product. 

I believe I am ready for school to start. The next four years will be a new adventure but an adventure I am ready to undertake!!
Close-up of Mounted Tablet

Until next time.....if the world tells you, you have too many years of experience and not enough education....GO BACK TO SCHOOL!!

Study Area Room Divider

SATAS Co Website - New Link

Life changes, life stays the same. I have had to change where the SATAS Co website will be. Still on WIX.com, but now it is on the free hosting platform, so, the address has changed. Please, use the following link:

I am heading back to school to get a degree, a Bachelor of Emergency & Security Management Studies. So, the SATAS Co website will be on a free platform until school is done. I will be available to do consulting on a compressed availability for anyone seeking my services. I will consider putting on SATAS Co courses if there is sufficient demand, however, I will try to encourage courses be done during the Summer months when my school course load will be reduced.  

SATAS Co inquiries can be directed to the following email:


I will endeavour to post more on my Blog in the coming days.