Vacation & Snowboardification
Pollux - Mt. Pollux is located in Amherst, MA. It
is almost impossible to find if you don't know where to look.
The entrance to it is someone's driveway. Yet, it is a relatively
well-known conservation area. It is, by all accounts, the tiniest
little mountain of all time. And for all intents and purposes,
it only really has two trees on it... big trees, at teh very top.
Those trees have been the basis for many of my photos, stories
and memories. Mt. Pollux is the place I go whenever I need to
commune with nature and find utter peace. It's a beautiful, quiet
place where people come to just sit and take in the 360 degree
view of the Pioneer Valley.
- Mutti's House - I love this house and this
property. This is the house that my parents and my aunt built
for my late grandmother, Mutti, to live in. Its a smallish house/cabin
nestled into 30 acres of woodland abutting the state forrest in
Conway, NH. It is a spiritual place for me, as well as for many
of the people I have brought there. I have a strong connection
to the area and have many fond childhood memories of when we would
visit as a family or when, later on, I would go up with my friends.
The top of the hill (we call it a hill, though it is higher up
than "Mt." Pollux) is a kind of portal to spiritual
enlightenment. It is one of the few places in this world that
has the ability to completely calm and reassure me just by existing.
Park - I have had so many great experiences at Crocker
Park. It's a small park, right on the ocean - or rather, on Marblehead
Harbor. Its also the location for events like the little concerts
they have on the 4th of July, and other times throughout the year
and is a great place to go and read a book, go swimming off of
the dock, or, as I have come to know - make out with your girlfriend.
Plus the park itself is in close proximity (as just about everything
else in Marblehead is) to everything else that you want. And it
was close to home for me... even closer to Pearl's home. I probably
saw her there years ago and just didn't even know it...
Bridge - That's not the actual name of the place
- at least to locals as far as I know... it was a surrogate name
that we gave it that a bunch of other people knew as well.. its
this little (and I mean little) swimming hole that is relatively
man-made, or at least man-aided. Its located under a bridge; a
silver bridge, in Amherst. It's right down the road from Puffer's
Pond and unless you know it's there, you would never be able to
see it from either of the roads that surround it. The pool is
formed by a small waterfall in the stream and held back by a small
retaining wall. Though it's only maybe 12 feet across, it does
get to be about 7-8 feet deep at times, and there used to be a
rope swing and an old bridge foundation that formed a ledge that
one could jump from. It was called "Teen Danger" - likely
because only teenagers were really stupid enough to do it - though,
I will admit that I did it a few times too. I guess I was still
a teenager at that point, so it's cool... But its a great place
to go and take a dip in the hot summer months. Its cool mountain
water and shade from the bridge makes for a perfect little oasis
in the middle of rural Amherst.
Ledge - This is just a simple, scenic lookout...
but it looks out over a good chunk of the Mount Washington Valley
and Conway/N. Conway, NH. You can drive up to the top and park
and walk to the cliff edge to look around... OR, as people like
Matt have the balls to do (I do not, yet), you can just climb.
It's in fact, one of the premiere climbing areas in the northeast.
I just like it for the views :)
Ravine, Mt. Washington - Ah, Tuck's. Tuckerman's
Ravine is my proving grounds for myself and my snowboarding skills.
The short of it is that its a 4 mile hike up the tallest mountain
in the northeast, carrying all of your ski/snowboard equipment
with you, then another shortish hike up the headwall once you
make it to Lunch Rocks. You usually make that hike for only one
or two runs down and the runs themselves are short seeing as it
starts at a vertical lip and gradually tapers down into the bowl
of the ravine. There are cliffs to jump and otherwise, the steepest
terrain anywhere around here. The hike alone is an accomplishment,
but the run really envigorates! And its fun for other people too,
like the inner-tubers. I think the greatest thing I have ever
seen was one of the first times I went up, we were hiking up Left
Gully and I looked over as about 12 people had stopped parellel
to me at about a 45 degree pitch. They only had one, allbeit massive
innertube between them. The guy holding it, put it down and held
it while everyone else hopped on, pig-pile style. Then as it was
loosing from his grip from the gravity pulling it down, he let
go and leapt on. The twelve of them sailed down the slope - I
kid you not - hovering about an inch off the ground for the majority
of the ride. So THATS why they needed 12 people... to hold the
tube to the earth. Its just awesome. Go alone or come up with
me this spring! I invite all who are willing to try!
Beach - It's just a beach, really. But I consider
it MY beach. The beach. I think that many other M'headers probably
feel the same. It was the scene for many great nights of partying
and hanging out in high school and its where I go to breathe and
relax and watch the ocean. It's also one of my favorite destinations
for going to play my guitar. Like I say, it's just a beach otherwise...
Beach - Same goes for this one... just a beach, with
a lot of memories and good times associated with it. Plus, it's
the place where Pearl & I are going to get married someday,
because that is her ultimate dream. Yeah, see how I did that?
All sneaky-like. And subtle. Maybe I shouldn't have pointed it
Bay - Emerald Bay is in Lake Tahoe, or rather, is
a part of it. It is this little bay which is formed by these big
mountains on all sides and the greatest road that follows the
contour and over a ridge-line, with no guard rails on either side,
making the drive scary as hell on anything but a beautiful day.
Smack dab in the middle of the bay itself is this tiny little
island with a tiny little castle on it. And all around on the
shore side are these massive redwoods. It's surreal and beautiful.
Lake Tahoe is beautiful as is, but this is the best part of it.
Salt Flats - In all honesty, I have only been there
once, and only in passing. But it was one of the most surreal
places I have ever been to and I have bveen dying to go back for
an extended visit to explore this marvel some more. If you have
never been, you can't even imagine such a place. MILES of nothing
but rock-candy-looking salt-crystal-crust covered by a mere 3
inches of water. Having lived next to the ocean all of my life,
my inherent belief was that water only lasts at 3 inches deep
for so long before it slopes down into the deep ocean. Not true
here. I mean, there are deeper parts, and apparently the belief
is that there is a prehistoric creature (Tessy) who inhabits Lake
Tahoe, but who uses vast underground waterways that connect the
lake and the Great Salt Lake. So, I'd imagine it would have to
be deep enough in parts to hide a giant critter like that. And
though the water is so densely saturated with salt that you could
likely float a hunk of lead on it, fish still live in it and people
go fishing there.. Never mind the dry areas, where - because it
is so flat for so long - they do land-speed record tests. I dunno..
it's just cool as shit and something that everyone should see
at some point in their lives.
- Okemo - This is a ski resort. And though it's not the steepest place
(nicknamed Slowkemo), I always manage to have a great time when
I go there. It's in southern VT, so it was a convenient drive
from the Pioneer Valley when I lived there. They have the best
(in my opinion) bumps run out of any other resort I have been
to, and their park is pretty sweet. I have even met some people
there - two girls who I have been trying to find again, Liz and
Sheryle. Mostly Sheryle, cuz I think Liz was offended by my lack
of faith in god to answer all of my problems... but anywho, its
a sweet place, and good for all abilities. Sapphire is my favorite
trail cuz its all just rollers and I usually spend more time in
the air than I do on the ground on that trail. Can't wait for
River - This place is just massive, but not massive
like Killington which can be chaotic. I really like the layout
of Sunday River. Its a great mountain for all abilities and has
enough terrain that you won't do the same run twice if you choose
not to. And on top of that, I have some great memories of that
place - ski trips in high school, and one that we crashed that
Danielle was at. And it was also the place where we met Heather,
Trube and Lori, who went on to become great friends for a while,
and Heather was kind of a girlfriend. Shit do I miss her... Oh
well.. The only drawback to the River is that it's quite a hike,
even from my house in Conway, and so you really need to plan your
- London - I loved London, even for the short time I was there. I loved
the atmosphere, the people, and the general level of energy. Its
a beautiful city too. Plus, when I was there, I was on a theatre
tour and got to see some fantastic plays - my favorite being "The
Forbidden Planet". I don't know why, but I really felt like
I belonged there. And one of the strangest moments of my life
happened there. Dan, Eli and I were walking along a street at
night. There wasn't a sole around... it was very eerily devoid
of just about everything. There was no wind... nothing. The buildings
even seemed like cardboard cut-outs or facades like that of an
old western town movie prop. But at that moment, we were noticing
that... just walked along, talking to ourselves. We came upon
a covered trash barrel - a public one like you find in a park.
And on top of it was an envelope. It peaked my curiosity and I
walked over to it picked it up and realized that it was bulging
with money. What I estimated to be at least thousands of dollars
worth of pounds. Truth is, I never got around to counting all
of it because after the initial shock of seeing that much money
on top of a trash barrel in the middle of the night had faded,
it gripped me that this might be a set-up. My eyes quickly darted
up to the windows of the near-by buildings, but I saw nothing
out of the ordinary. Then again, I suppose that that's what makes
good snipers 'good'. Let me tell you that it most certainly DID
cross my mind that I could stuff it in my pocket and run. But
I had Dan and Eli there too, and well... it took every bit of
self-control and strength I had to put it back and just walk away.
I could have been rich, but I could have been dead too. So here's
London, a great town and a chance to get rich quick!
- Chamonix - I really must go back to Chamonix some day. When we went, they
were in the middle of their biggest snow-drought in 25 years,
but we had fun none-the-less. The thing I liked most about Chamonix
was that it humbled me unlike any other place I had ever been.
I mean, some of it was scary shit like the day that we had a complete
white-out. It was so bad that I could barely see my snowboard
on my feet! We made our way down VERY slowly, following each other
and using our voices to keep track. 17 people died that day, some
just skiing off a cliff they didn't know was there. That's some
serious shit. But the rest of the time was pretty wonderful, despite
the lack of snow and the death-toll. I 'jumped' a house, took
a few good airs, and had a great time with good people.
Square - There is hardly a better people-watching
location anywhere else in the world. I love Harvard Square. I
have been going there since my youth to skate, go to the Rocky
Horror Picture Show, for food, and to visit friends. And now I
go there for the same, plus the awesome bar scene, shopping, and
just to walk around and enjoy the atmosphere. You can pretty much
find everything you need there and so it's well worth a walk around
Pizza - This place pretty much feeds all of UMass,
Amherst College and Hampshire College from between 1am-3am, not
to mention all of the other times. It is pretty much crack on
pizza. Super awesome specialty pizza by the slice - my favorites
being "Tortellini and Pesto", "Mexicana",
"Potato Bacon" and that steak one... Oh, my mouth is
watering right now. But this place is a mob scene after the bars
close. I have gone there specifically to film the potential riots.
Neil and I used to go and see how quickly we could get from one
side of the crowd to the other. I think we did it in 30 seconds
one time, but we literally climbed over people and objects in
our way. It's stellar people watching and all the better with
Y Sano - Holy football-sized burritos, Batman! Seriously...
this place rules if you like burritos and other staple Mexican
grub. I am particularly fond of their Grande Burrito with steak
and shrimp, sour cream and their "Wicked Hot Sauce".
I am not entirely sure I have ever gotten anything else... but
seriously, these burritos are freakin' HUGE! Bueno is located
in Amherst, MA, but as far as I know there is another in Boston
(and I think one in Texas??) though the other ones go by "Good
and Healthy" due to some copyright bullshit or something.
House - Like beer, I tend to try different sushi
places in search of the best ones. However, despite my many ventures,
I have found almost none that come even close to this place. It
is located next to Paparazzi and just east of the Concord rotary
and prison on rt. 2. Chances are that if you travel rt. 2 often,
you have passed it and haven't even realized it. It's strangely
hidden and kind of tricky to get to. But not really. Anyways -
they have the best, freshest, tastiest sushi I have ever had.
Asahi in Salem comes close... but if you like sushi, you MUST
try this place!
Sub - This is just a simple sub shop in Amherst...
nothing to write home about, EXCEPT that they make the world's
best Italian sub. My tummy is growling just thinking about it.
Italian subs are my benchmark test for sub shops. And hands down,
they have the very best there is. Cold, that is. Toasted... well...
that's another story. check them out, grab some grub and go get
a beer at the Spoke next door.
Willows - Salem Willows is one of those last vestiges
of youth. Granted it has changed considerably since I was young,
it still smells the same and looks roughly the same - though a
bit more beat-up and just slightly less exciting. It is a very
small version of Hampton Beach, with an arcade, ski-ball, those
coin games that go duh-duh-dha-la-da-da and send my mom into a
trance, and various mini-golf courses, fried dough, soft-serve
icecream and anything else you might find at one of those old
boardwalk-style venues. There is a nice park right next door with
a tiny ampitheater which we used to go skating in, or rather,
on. I just remember years of saving tickets from ski-ball and
that weird bingo game that used squash balls, praying that I would
win enough to get something really stellar by the end of the summer...
Back Bay - I NEVER would have known this place was
there if it weren't pointed out to me by Renee. It's this massive,
converted movie theatre just off of Boylston St. that has been
turned into a lounge, billiards hall and blacklight bowling megaplex.
There are bars all over the place and a full restaurant and all
the entertainment you can stand. It's a totally kick-ass, adult
play-land. And every time I have gone there now, I have totally
owned at bowling! Anyone wanna challenge my mad bowling skillz?
Let me know, and we can go to King's for the showdown.
- Faces - This is a really cool, hip and contemporary adult toy store
- and I don't mean like sex-toys. I mean, all sorts of kitchy,
fun, funny, and sometimes completely useless toys that kids would
enjoy, but adults enjoy more. They have all sorts of awesome clothing,
games, cards, furniture, tapestries, kitchen goods, frames, clocks,
candles, stationery, artwork, etc. Whenever I go there, I invariably
end up staying at least an hour just wandering around checking
things out. It's located in Northampton, MA.
- icanhascheezburger - LOLcats central! Get your daily dose of kittehs with capshuns
(where everything is spelled phoenetically)
- Think Geek - Tons of toys for geeks like Nick. Great stuff there, from retardedly
expensive to cheap and awesome.
- Tech-Deals - One of
my stops to find all the great deals on the internet. Updated
- Slick Deals - Another one of my stops to find all the great deals on the internet.
- Woot! - The
one-item-a-day shopping site. Like, they only sell one thing a
day, but its usually cool and cheap. Also check out shirt and
The Channel - On demand? HA! This is TRUE on-demand. Just
about any TV show, movie, cartoon, etc that you can think of,
Chapters - Okay, so I got addicted to a kids show. The Avatar
is the bomb shiznat, and here is how you watch all of the episodes.
Park Zone - All of the Southpark episodes online.
Militia - Again, another one-at-a-time shopping site, but
this is updated as soon as they sell out of the previous item.
Its all sk8/snow stuff.
Guitar and Bass Tuner - Tone deaf like me? This Flash app
emulates the correct tuning for different configurations for both
guitar and bass.
- Ultimate-Guitar - A HUGE repository of guitar and band information, including
TAB for just about every song you can think of.
- You Tube - If you don't know about this by now, time to move out from under
- AuctionZip - A cool site that lists all of the auctions in your area, including
estate sales, storage space auctions and various others.
- www.NickCentric.com - It's HERE! Like, you are already at this website, so clicking
the link is merely, totally and utterly redundant!
- www.NickSteglich.com - This is my professional resume and portfolio website.
- nick.focuspower.com - This is my place to put all of the work that I have done throughout
the years. It's my repository for EVERYTHING.
- www.FocusPower.com - This is my business with Andy, EJ, Rick, Jon, Rob, and anyone
else who helps out.
- www.Holmes-Page.com - This is the website that I built for my amazing circle of friends,
the "Holmes Family".
Websites that I Have Made
- www.SalemCycle.com - Salem Cycle - Owned and operated by Dan Shuman. I have done
much of the graphic work for Dan and Salem Cycle and the logo
that I designed for him has become easily my most famous. It has
been featured on TV, in books, on various websites and has been
refenerced by many of Dan's patrons. I am VERY proud of this logo
and this website, and extremely proud of Dan for his success.
- www.Soccer-Magic.com - I took over this website from Gravity Switch many many years
ago. Ferdie, who is the owner and who the website is about, is
an amazing guy. He is the Guinness Book Record holder for speed
juggling a soccer ball as well as the backwards 100-yard dash.
Dashing aside, Ferdie has revolutionized the way soccer is played
in the states, and continues to hold his soccer camps every year
so that more future soccer champs can learn the way the game should
- www.Pedipress.com - These folks publish books that instruct people with asthma on
how to best deal with it. They have created - through the tutilage
of Dr. Thomas Plaut - a series of instructional materials on asthma
and asthma training. It has been wildly successful and accepted
as a standard by which asthma education is taught. Plus, Stacey
is cute :)
- www.FerdiesSoccerMagic.com - This is another website created for Ferdie's Soccer Magic. But
this time, he went international. He is originally from Ghana,
and took his "Magic" back there to teach some kids what
he has spent a lifetime learning. At some point, we will take
this model and make websites for all of his international exploits!
- www.NELandscapeDesign.com - A cool, yet simple site that I made for my friend's, daughter's,
husband's business. He does some great landscape design and installation.
You can view some pictures from his past projects on the site
as well as find out how to contact him.
- www.OneManStand.com - This guy, Ray, decided to invent a replacement for the roller-stand.
It was his experience as a woodworker that roller-stands were
limiting and didn't really ever function the way you needed them
to, so he created the One Man Stand - which solves all of those
problems in one inexpensive product. We created this website to
help market that product.
- www.PhotographicAnalysis.com - A dispute resolution service that takes aerial photographs and
analyses them to look for discrepencies and evidence over a period
of time. It's really cool stuff actually. They look at the photographs
through a stereoscope which creates a 3D topographical image...
and then base their findings off of those images.
- www.DateCop.com - This is an interesting idea - an online dating site review and
other dating information, tips and resources. I had a lot of fun
making this site. Just graphically speaking, it was fun to do.