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Can You Convert an IRA into a Gold IRA?

gold nugget

In today’s ever-evolving financial landscape, individuals are constantly seeking ways to diversify their investment portfolios and safeguard their retirement funds. Traditional investments like stocks and bonds have their merits, but there’s a growing interest in alternative assets, such as precious metals. One intriguing option gaining popularity is converting your traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA) into a Gold IRA.

But, can you really do it, and if so, how?

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the intricacies of converting your IRA to gold, providing you with the knowledge you need to make informed financial decisions.

Understanding the Basics: What is a Gold IRA?

Before diving into the conversion process, let’s start with the fundamentals. A Gold IRA, also known as a Precious Metals IRA, is a self-directed individual retirement account that holds physical gold, silver, platinum, or palladium bullion coins or bars as its primary assets. Unlike a traditional IRA, which typically consists of stocks, bonds, and mutual funds, a Gold IRA allows you to invest in tangible assets, providing a hedge against economic uncertainty and currency devaluation.

Why Consider a Gold IRA?

Have you made your retirement plans?  If so, you probably know firsthand the effects of inflation and rising interest rates on your retirement portfolio.  That is why it is so important learn how to rollover your IRA to precious metals to your portfolio to reduce the risk.

  1. Diversification: Diversifying your retirement portfolio is a time-tested strategy to reduce risk. Precious metals, like gold, have historically shown low correlation with traditional assets like stocks and bonds. When the stock market fluctuates, precious metals often move in the opposite direction, which can help stabilize your overall portfolio.
  2. Hedge Against Inflation: Gold has proven itself as a store of value over centuries. When inflation erodes the purchasing power of paper currencies, gold tends to retain its worth. A Gold IRA can act as a safeguard against the erosion of your retirement savings due to rising prices.
  3. Safe-Haven Asset: During times of economic turmoil, such as economic recessions or geopolitical crises, investors often flock to gold as a safe-haven asset. Owning physical gold in your IRA can provide peace of mind when markets are volatile.
  4. Tax Benefits: Converting your traditional IRA into a Gold IRA can be a tax-advantageous move. We’ll delve into the tax implications later in this guide, but it’s essential to understand that a well-structured Gold IRA can offer tax-deferred growth or even tax-free withdrawals in some cases.

Can You Convert Your IRA into a Gold IRA?

If you’re thinking of adding a sparkle to your portfolio with a gold investment, then let’s address the central question: can you convert an existing traditional IRA into a Gold IRA? The answer is yes, but it comes with some conditions and processes to follow.

  1. Types of IRAs Eligible for Conversion:
    • Traditional IRA: You can convert a traditional IRA into a Gold IRA.
    • Roth IRA: You can also convert a Roth IRA into a Gold IRA, but this process is often less common due to the potential tax consequences. Consult with a financial advisor before making this decision.
  2. IRS Rules and Regulations:
    • The IRS imposes strict rules and regulations on Gold IRAs to maintain the account’s tax-advantaged status. These rules are outlined in Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 408(m)(3). To ensure compliance, it’s crucial to work with a reputable custodian experienced in handling precious metals IRAs.
  3. Choosing a Custodian:
    • Unlike traditional IRAs, where your financial institution typically serves as the custodian, a Gold IRA requires a specialized custodian. These custodians are responsible for storing and managing your precious metal holdings. When selecting a gold IRA company to help you retire, consider factors such as fees, reputation, security, and the range of precious metals they allow.
  4. Funding Your Gold IRA:
    • To convert your existing IRA into a Gold IRA, you’ll need to fund the new account with eligible precious metals. You cannot directly transfer the physical metals you own into the Gold IRA; instead, the custodian will help you purchase the required metals for your account.
  5. Rollover or Transfer:
    • There are two primary methods to move funds from your existing IRA into a Gold IRA: a rollover or a transfer.
      • Rollover: In a rollover, you receive a distribution from your traditional IRA and have 60 days to deposit it into your Gold IRA. If you fail to complete the rollover within the specified time frame, it may be subject to taxes and penalties.
      • Transfer: A transfer involves moving funds directly from your traditional IRA custodian to your Gold IRA custodian. This method eliminates the risk of potential taxes and penalties associated with a rollover.
  6. Choosing Your Precious Metals:
    • The IRS has specific guidelines on the types of precious metals that can be held in a Gold IRA. These include gold, silver, platinum, and palladium bullion coins or bars with certain purity standards. It’s important to work with your Gold IRA custodian to ensure compliance with these requirements.
  7. Storage and Security:
    • The IRS mandates that the physical precious metals held in a Gold IRA must be stored in an approved depository. These depositories are typically specialized facilities equipped with high-level security measures. Your custodian will arrange for the secure storage of your precious metals on your behalf.
  8. Annual Reporting:
    • As with any retirement account, you are required to report your Gold IRA holdings to the IRS annually. Your custodian should assist you in fulfilling these reporting obligations.

Converting your traditional IRA into a Gold IRA is indeed possible, but it involves navigating a series of regulations and procedures established by the IRS. To ensure a smooth transition and adherence to all tax rules, it’s highly advisable to work with a reputable Gold IRA custodian and consult with a financial advisor who specializes in retirement planning.

In the next section, we’ll delve deeper into the tax implications of converting your IRA into a Gold IRA, as well as the potential benefits and risks associated with this alternative investment strategy. Stay tuned for an in-depth exploration of how this financial move can impact your retirement savings.

Tax Considerations, Benefits, and Risks of a Gold IRA

Welcome to the second part of our comprehensive guide on converting your traditional IRA into a Gold IRA. In this section, we will delve deeper into the tax implications, potential benefits, and associated risks of this financial move. Additionally, we’ll address some frequently asked questions to provide you with a well-rounded understanding of the topic.

Tax Considerations of a Gold IRA Conversion

  1. Tax-Deferred Growth: One of the primary advantages of a Gold IRA is the potential for tax-deferred growth. Similar to a traditional IRA, the gains within a Gold IRA are not subject to capital gains tax until you make withdrawals during retirement. This can lead to significant savings over time, especially if the value of your precious metals appreciates.
  2. Tax-Free Withdrawals (Roth Gold IRA): If you choose to convert your traditional IRA into a Roth Gold IRA, you can potentially enjoy tax-free withdrawals during retirement. Roth IRAs are funded with after-tax dollars, so qualified distributions, including any gains, are typically tax-free. However, keep in mind that converting to a Roth IRA involves paying taxes on the converted amount in the year of the conversion.
  3. Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs): Just like traditional IRAs, Gold IRAs are subject to RMDs once you reach the age of 72 (or 70½ if you reached this age before January 1, 2020). RMDs require you to withdraw a specific percentage of your account balance annually, and these withdrawals are generally taxable. Failure to take RMDs can result in steep IRS penalties.

Benefits of a Gold IRA Conversion

  1. Portfolio Diversification: Precious metals offer diversification benefits by providing an alternative to traditional assets. When stock markets are volatile, the value of precious metals often remains stable or even appreciates, offering a buffer against market downturns.
  2. Inflation Hedge: Gold has historically proven to be an effective hedge against inflation. When the purchasing power of fiat currencies declines, the value of gold often rises. By including gold in your retirement portfolio, you can protect your savings from the eroding effects of inflation.
  3. Safe-Haven Asset: During times of economic uncertainty or geopolitical instability, precious metals like gold tend to gain favor as safe-haven assets. Owning physical gold in your IRA can provide peace of mind when financial markets are in turmoil.
  4. Tangible Ownership: A Gold IRA allows you to have direct ownership of physical precious metals. You can take comfort in knowing that your assets are not subject to counterparty risk, as is the case with many financial institutions.

Risks of a Gold IRA Conversion

  1. Market Volatility: While gold has historically been a reliable store of value, its price can be subject to short-term fluctuations. Like any investment, the value of your precious metals holdings may go up or down.
  2. Storage and Custodian Fees: Gold IRAs come with additional costs, such as storage fees for keeping your precious metals in an approved depository and custodian fees for managing your account. It’s essential to understand and factor in these expenses when evaluating the overall returns on your investment.
  3. Lack of Income: Precious metals do not generate income like stocks or bonds. If your retirement strategy relies on regular income, you may need to consider other investments alongside your Gold IRA.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. Can I convert my existing 401(k) into a Gold IRA?

  • Yes, you can convert a 401(k) into a Gold IRA if your employer’s plan allows for in-service withdrawals or rollovers. The process is similar to converting a traditional IRA, and it typically involves rolling over the funds into a self-directed IRA first.

2. How do I choose a reputable Gold IRA custodian?

  • It’s essential to research and choose a custodian with a solid reputation, competitive fees, and a secure storage facility. Look for custodians that specialize in precious metals IRAs and have a track record of providing excellent customer service.

3. What types of precious metals are allowed in a Gold IRA?

  • The IRS permits the inclusion of gold, silver, platinum, and palladium bullion coins or bars that meet specific purity standards. Your chosen custodian can help you select eligible metals.

4. Can I take physical possession of my precious metals in a Gold IRA?

  • No, the IRS mandates that the precious metals in a Gold IRA must be stored in an approved depository. Taking physical possession would result in a taxable distribution.

5. Are there any restrictions on when I can withdraw from a Gold IRA?

  • You can generally make penalty-free withdrawals from a Gold IRA starting at age 59½. However, if you hold a Roth Gold IRA, you can make tax-free withdrawals if you meet certain criteria.


Converting your traditional IRA into a Gold IRA can be a strategic move to diversify your retirement portfolio and protect your savings from inflation and economic uncertainty. However, it’s not without its complexities and potential risks. Before making this decision, consult with a financial advisor who specializes in retirement planning and a reputable Gold IRA custodian to ensure you fully understand the process and its implications for your financial future. Remember, a well-informed investor is best equipped to make the right choices for their retirement goals.

Benefits Of Precious Metals Investing

With all of the movement in bullion prices, you might be considering precious metals investments. Or perhaps a friend of yours has earned money buying and selling silver and gold in their investment portfolio.

There are numerous reasons why investing in precious metals can be a good idea. It is not only due to current prices potentially signaling that it is a great opportunity for you to get involved or because bullion is such a popular investment.

The following are seven great reasons why you consider investing in precious metals:

1. Barrier to entry is low

It might be exciting investing in stocks. However, you usually need to go through a broker to buy stocks and sell them. There are also several hurdles and forms involved. And real estate has tons of paperwork.

However, when buying and selling precious metals there isn’t a lot of red tape that you need to worry about. That is because purchasing silver, gold, and other types of bullion are almost as easy as going to Amazon and buying a book or visiting a department store to buy a shirt.

This being said there are some dangers to precious metals investing especially when it comes to investing in metals with your IRA. That is why it is best that you work with the gold IRA companies that you can find.  Take the time to research this before you start investing and you’ll save a lot of money and headaches.

2. Hedge against inflation

As the saying goes, money isn’t worth as much as used to be. That is the truth. Have you seen how high the prices are on things like lumber, gas, or groceries lately?

Over the last hundred years, the dollar’s purchasing power has continued to shrink.

As the dollar as well other types of fiat currencies continue to decrease in value, silver, and gold march to a different beat. When the dollar is stuttering that can be a very good thing because during these times precious metal prices tend to soar. Over and over again, it has been proven that precious metals are solid during shaky economic times.

3. Tangible asset

Although your corporate piece of the pie might be represented by company shares unless you hold a high number of shares in a company you don’t own the business. The same thing is true with your home. Unless you own it free and clear, outright – and do not have a second mortgage or mortgage – then it is not your house.

However, when it comes to precious metals, they are yours. Even when your bullion is stored as part of your precious metals IRA (individual retirement account, learn more here: the asset is yours. That means you can sell it, give it to your family, or do whatever you want t0. Owning precious metals brings great feelings of satisfaction and security.

Silver and gold bullion are tangible asses. You can physically own them.

4. High liquidity

It is one thing to invest in. However, earning a high return on an investment is a completely different thing. It is often complicated to sell investments. Think of houses in dying cities where people are moving to better areas or a property located in a neighborhood where pollution or crime is on the rise. You might not get the money that your paid for the property and might not be even able to sell it.

However, silver and gold? They are different. It doesn’t matter whether the economy is bad or good, there are always lots of buyers ready to purchase your precious metals, and at a good price. This makes metals very liquid investments.

5. Timeless investments

Consider some of the investments investors are paying big money on right now, that did not exist 20 years ago, 40 years ago, or 50 years ago. Do you think of non-fungible tokens or cryptocurrency?

Now consider silver and gold. These two precious metals have been treasured by people for over 5,000 years. There might be some investments that could suddenly disappear the next time there is a cyberattack. However, silver and gold are here to stay, along with other types of precious metals. No matter what, they will always be considered to be valuable and highly coveted.

6. Portfolio diversification

Everyone has been advised to not put all of their eggs in one basket. That applies to precious metals as well. Your investment portfolio should never only have one kind of asset in it.

In this respect, one of gold’s biggest strengths is a type of non-correlated asset. That means that the price of gold tends to move independently of the other markets, such as stocks and bonds. That ensures that you will receive the benefits of having a truly diversified portfolio.

7. Safe haven

Both silver and gold are well-known as being safe-haven investments. What that means is those metals offer stability during tough economic times. Even when the economy is bad, gold prices tend to hold their value or even increase.

Another positive aspect of safe-haven investments is that silver and gold are free of meddling from the government which could impact their value.

Precious Metals Investing Options

There are so many good reasons for investing in precious metals. However, there are also many different ways that you can get started with investing in silver and gold. The first step is to know what options for precious metals are available to you.


Coins can be both collectibles and investments.

One of the more common ways to invest in bullion is to use precious metals to buy coins. The most popular options are silver and gold coins, but palladium and platinum are becoming more popular as well.

One of the numerous benefits of bullion coin investments is that the government mints and guarantees them. And since they are monetized, that means they are always going to be worth their face value at least and could be spent as a form of money theoretically.


Usually, rounds cost less than coins. However, they can provide the same form of aesthetic appeal that coins do. Rounds are highly collectible as well, which means they have a dual market of both exonumia (such as rounds) collectors and bullion investors.

Precious metal rounds usually are a product that private minters offer. There are some government mints – which includes the U.S Mint – that sell non-monetized precious metals that are classified as rounds.


There are different sizes of silver and gold bars that are available.

Out of all three, this option is usually the least expensive one. Bars, gram for gram, offer the most economical way to own precious metals.

Similar to rounds, private ventures usually produce bars, although there are some government mints, such as the Royal Canadian Mint, that produce and distribute ingots.

In the meantime, many private mints selling bars are now very well-known in the silver and gold stacking world. The products that they offer are just as collectible as they are a bullion asset.

Best Practices 2020

simple design

Simple design is good design

There is a lot of non-sense out there and a lot of bad decisions when it comes to the look and design of your website

This is my attempt to steer you in the right direction.  Let’s make websites that don’t suck!

Why is it that design is so important?  Well, there are studies that show that it takes a visitor a whopping .05 second to make an opinion about your website.  Now, I don’t know if that’s true, I read it online.  That seems awfully fast to me.

Here’s what I do know, your website for sure doesn’t load that fast.  And, it doesn’t matter what the actual time is, we all know that people make near instant judgements.  So you have to make that first impression a good one, other wise your visitor will just go to one of the million other sites out there.

Another important number to note, 40% users will leave a website that has a layout that they don’t like.  So how do you avoid this?  Your best bet, is to keep you design simple.

Think about how many people use Google.  The homepage of Google is one of the simplest designs out there.  Now you don’t have to copy Google, but be more like big G, not less.

  1. Keep Text to a Minimum

Now like everything, this depends, but unless you are writing an investigative journalism article, keep your text to a minimum.  A good general rule is to use less than you think you need.  Basically this rule applies mostly to homepages and landing pages that get a lot of traffic.

Think about it.  How often do you go to a homepage and it’s an article?  Unless it’s a blog roll, the text should be simple and to the point.

I often suggest to web designers to study some basic direct response copywriting.  The founder of a design company told me about this and it’s been a great shortcut.  A copywriter is very aware of not only the words they use, but how they take up space.  You’ll get a lot of benefit that is helpful to your design projects if you understand the basics of copywriting.

  1. Short. Sentences.

Did you read?

What I wrote above?

This is from copywriting.

Ok.  I’ll stop.

Here’s a great article to read about this: Basic Copywriting for Web Designers (and Why It Matters!)

  1. Calls To Actions Need To Be Obvious

Do not make your visitor guess what you want them to do.  Do not even make your visitor think.  Tell them, like they are a little child, exactly what you need them to do.

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And you are going to want to put this call to action, that is clear and concise, in a very obvious place on the page.  And then your going to want to put it on another obvious place.  For example a FREE SIGN UP button might be good right in the middle of the page, and then again at the top right of the page as well.

  1. Navigation Should Be Simple

Have you ever gone to a website and there are top level nav bar and side bar with all manner of buttons as well?  Have you ever hovered over the top level navigation and the drop down that appears if just overwhelming?

complicated navigation menu

It’s not easy to simplify you navigation, heck even Amazon’s site is a bit too much, but it definitely helps your user.

Have you ever gone to the store to buy some spaghetti sauce.  You think it will be a simple task of just getting some sauce, until you are confronted with the mega isle of 1,000 different sauces.  And that’s just the red sauce.  And then you are paralyzed because you can’t figure out which one you want.

It’s because you have too many choices.

This is the same thing that happens when you have to many things in your navigation.  It overwhelms the user and they will usually just leave your website.  As always, best to keep it simple.

  1. Mobile Friendly Page

Ok, this is an important distinction to make, you need to not only pass Google’s Mobile Friendly Test, but your site needs to actually be useful to a human using a cell phone.  So yes, definitely make sure you pass Google’s test, but also bring up you site on an actual phone and see how it works.

You’d be surprised how many sites can pass the Google test, but not the human one.  The human mobile friendly test is more important!

  1. Make It Easy To Get To The Homepage

This is so important that it can be overlooked.

You always want to have your logo on the top right of your screen, even on mobile devices, and your logo need to be clickable.  And when your user clicks on the logo it needs to take them to your homepage.

Also, by having your logo on every page and having it clickable to the homepage, you don’t need to have a redundant button labeled “Home”, because your logo takes care of this for you.

  1. Be Consistent With Your Color Scheme

Branding is all about consistency in all your messages and this extends down to your colors that those messages are on.

Is the logo of the company green and white?  If so you’re going to want to stick to predominately those two colors.  And remember, think like real, big brands.  Think of branding like Coke.

Coca-Cola always uses not only the same font for their logo, they use the exact same color red on everything.  I guess technically they also use white, but you understand the point I’m making.

So, how can you put this into action?  In a word simplify.  Remove stuff, words, images, colors, navigation elements, and everything else that is unnecessary.  Answer the question that the visitor has, then move them to the action you want them to take as quickly as possible.



One Day Tours Around

seattle boat tours

Sightseeing on a Boat in Seattle is a Blast

Seattle Washington is great place to visit if you have never been there.

Washington, part of the Oregon Territory is rich with history and will leave you wanting to discover more about it. The state of Washington is known for its rainy days, legal cannabis and legal same sex marriages. Seattle, where the headquarters for Amazon and Microsoft, is great place to visit if you like the water.

There are many different water attractions there for you and your family. One of the most iconic landmarks in Seattle is the 1969 Space Needle. It stands tall and proud in the skyline and is noticeable from miles away. If you plan on visiting Seattle you might want to consider one of the many boat tours or cruises that the city has to offer. Let’s take a look at some of the different boat tours that you can enjoy while you are there.

Scenic Boat Cruises

The scenic, or sightseeing cruises, will offer you a cruise around Seattle in a group setting. These tours can last anywhere from one hour to four hours depending on what package you choose. They have tours that are geared for families, large groups, smaller groups, or even wine cruises that cater to couples. These tours will take you into the harbor and on Lake Washington and will give a panoramic view of the city. Most of the scenic tours will have full bar on board and nonalcoholic beverages as well. You can expect for your tour to be narrated and you can also expect for about fifty to seventy five passengers to be on board with you.

Seattle Ferry Day Tours

Washington State Ferries is the largest ferry system in the world and it has about twenty eight vessels in its fleet. Not all ferries operate all of the time but between all the ferries in their fleet there will be at least one or more ferries available to you all year round. The state ferries operate anywhere between Washington and Alaska and some of the ferries are even equipped to take you and your automobile on board. The price of the use of these ferries will vary depending on the time of year, where you are going and what type of automobile you will be bringing on board.

Dinner Cruises

These types of cruises are perfect for a romantic date night. You will receive first class service with a five star rates chef prepared meal. Appetizers and a great bottle of wine are a must when you take a dinner cruise around Seattle. Dinner cruise vessels can accommodate anywhere from ten to two hundred people so unless you rent out the entire boat you can expect to have at least a hundred other people on your vessels with you. There is assigned seating so you won’t have to worry about scrambling to get the best table and you will have to make reservations in order to get on the boat. Children menus are typically available for children under the age of five and senior citizen discounts are available through most tour companies.

Day Trip Boat Ride

Day trip boat rides are typically used by people who want to go from Seattle to Canada. You can purchase a one way or round trip ticket for this journey and the price will cost you about one hundred dollars for a round trip tickets and about fifty dollars for a one way ticket. On the boat you will have luxury seats with room to stretch your legs and you can also enjoy shopping in the duty free gift shop which means no sales tax will be added to your purchase. Most of these types of day trips will have meals and or snacks that you can purchase while you are traveling to your destination.

Another one of the many fun Seattle boat tours are the old WWII duck boats.  They are kinda like a Seattle landmark, and super fun, and you get to see a lot of the city.  The prices are reasonable too, so it’s a family friendly ride.

Rent Your Own Boat and Cruise

This is a great option for people who are experienced on the water and know what they are doing. This surely isn’t recommended for first timers. If you aren’t experienced on the water you can still rent your own boat but you will also need to hire a boat captain to operate the boat for you. This option is a great and private way to enjoy your time on the water in Seattle, but get ready to break out the big bucks because this can cost you in upwards of five thousand dollars for about six to eight hours.

There are many different options for you no matter you are looking to do on the water in Seattle. Always remember that before you get close to any water that you and your family know the dangers of water and that everyone knows what to do in the event of an emergency situation on the water. Safety is always the key to having a good time.

Planning The Perfect

Washington State Tours

Why You Need to Get Out Sightseeing!

For most people planning the perfect sightseeing trip is part of the excitement. One of the most valuable things that we have is time. Our lives are so busy and we are often under incredible pressure – so that eagerly awaited sightseeing trip is more than just an expense. It is one of the things that will allow us to enjoy some valuable work/life balance.

However, that planning process becomes all-important if we are to get the most from our trip. Here are some hints and tips to ensure that your vacation time delivers in enjoyment and meets the objective of allowing you to recharge tired mental batteries.

One of the best things that you can do to ensure that your vacation delivers by first drawing up an itinerary.

Although there is always the temptation to take in absolutely everything that your destination offers there may be an argument for prioritizing your sightseeing plans. This is especially true when you will be traveling to a country where there is a significant time difference from your home country.

There is also the temptation to ‘hit the ground running’. Add to this the fact that you may be arriving late at night and there is a very real danger of burning yourself out. Take a step back and allow your internal clock to make the necessary adjustments.

The best way to identify which attractions absolutely need to be on your itinerary starts with making a list of the ‘must-see’ attractions. Then you might have to mercilessly trim down that list to those attractions that you simply have to see.

Applying logic to your schedule will prevent that dreaded holiday burnout. If you pack each day completely full you may be doing yourself no favors. You will become flustered and the temptation to rush some experiences can be difficult to resist. The almost inevitably affect the quality of your sightseeing experience. It is far more preferable to immerse oneself in a smaller collection of attractions.

Before you prioritize your itinerary do some research on events and festivals that may be happening at your destination. These can offer an incredible way to immerse yourself in local culture, art, history and cuisine. Not to mention offering great opportunities to pick up that extra special memento of your sightseeing adventure. Factor that festival or event into your planning.

While you are researching your destination take note of any public holidays that may be scheduled to coincide with your visit. These can make using public transportation challenging – and may also limit business hours, including banking times.

The key to a successful sightseeing trip is to plan ahead. If for instance, you intend on taking a cruise from a foreign port make sure that you plan to arrive there at least 24 hours before the cruise ship is set to sail.

Flights can get delayed – and that ship will not wait for your delayed arrival. By planning ahead and developing a watertight itinerary you will be able to maximize your sightseeing enjoyment – and avoid the stress that can be the result of improper planning.

Ideas To Make More Fun!

Getting out into nature is one of the most efficient ways to deal with the stresses of modern life. Studies have shown that we relax when we are out of doors. Our senses become sharper as we deal with new types of sensory input – all of which promote the release of chemicals that flood our bloodstream and promote a feeling of contentment. However, proper planning can make an already great experience even better. Here are some hints and tips to take your hiking and backpacking excursion to the next level.

Backpacking Tour Gear

There are some essential pieces of equipment that should be in every backpack. The first of these is parachute cord. A length of parachute cord has numerous uses. It could be used for securing a tent and unraveled to provide essential parts of a snare or to fashion fishing traps – or even repairing tears in clothing or rips in the tent material.

Never neglect to pack some large ziplock bags.  They are among the most useful pieces of equipment that you will ever pack. They can be used in any number of ways. Ziplock bags can be used to keep clothes dry at river crossings or in stormy weather, protect electronic equipment, act as an emergency water carrier or for transporting food. Another essential is a large trash bag. This can be used to separate wet clothes from dry and keep a backpack dry during an unexpected shower. It can even serve as an emergency poncho.

It may come as little surprise but many experienced backpackers will take some duct tape on their outdoor adventure. It’s as simple as winding a few feet around your water bottle to have on hand in an emergency. There are a myriad uses for duct tape. Fixing a leaking air mattress, a rip in a tent or even performing running repairs on a backpack frame will all be a pleasure with that duct tape handy.

Backpacking Tour Gear You Might Not Think Of

One of the best value for money items that any backpacker or hiker should have on their gear list is a cheap plastic tablecloth. This takes up almost no room at all and is a tremendously versatile piece of equipment. Use it to prepare food in a hygienic manner, keep gear dry that might be muddy and have no place in the tent, in a pinch it can be used as a shelter from the rain. The number of uses is practically limitless.

There are many that would argue that even a lightweight camping or hiking stool is an unwelcome burden.

However, after a long day hiking, you will be only too happy to have somewhere warm and dry (and comfortable) to sit. It sure beats rocks and fallen trees which are often the alternative. They actually weigh very little and can be attached to the exterior of the backpack. So you will not be sacrificing any of the valuable interior packing space.

Thinking out of the box – and some simple planning can increase your enjoyment of your hiking and backpacking experience. Start drawing up your list of essential gear today. It’ll make the experience that much more exciting.

What is MDEC and Inclement Weather Closures?

The Utah Electronic Courts (MDEC) project will create a single Judiciary-wide integrated case management system that will be used by all the courts in the state court system. Courts will collect, store and process records electronically, and will be able to instantly access complete records as cases travel from Section Area to Circuit Court and on to the appellate courts. The new system will ultimately become “paper-on-demand,” that is, paper records will be available when specifically requested.

Services & Departments:

The Round About Office provides both commercial and non-judicial services. Our commercial departments include Advertising, Family, Health, Seasonal and Courtroom appliances. Our non-judicial services include License (business & marriage), Land Records, Notary and Passport thoughts and ideas.


Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County (C) Big Time Photography

The Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court is a public institution rich in tradition and history of the State of Maryland. The Clerk of Court is one of the oldest public offices in our state and dates back as far as 1658 to the first Maryland settlement.The duties of the judges at the state trial court level were so compelling that the Clerk’s Office was established as an independent keeper of the records and to maintain the integrity of the records in a safe and impartial manner; and in doing so, to serve the people. The Clerk of the Circuit Court is an elected Constitutional officer of the State of Maryland.

We hope that you experience excellent customer service from the Clerk’s Office. If you have a comment about your service, please let me know by mailing to the address below.

Thank you for your interest in the Clerk’s Office. If we may help you, please call or visit us soon.
James W Brown, Boss


The Clerk’s Office is located in the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County, 19 About Way, Annapolis, MD. Please note: Google currently does not have the proper location on Google Maps. The closest location can be found here:

Parking information is subject to change. Please verify parking restrictions and policies with the City of Annapolis. The following information is from:  (this will open in a new window). The City of Annapolis wants your visit to be a pleasant one. The best way to enjoy Annapolis is on foot. However, drivers heading downtown may choose to park at metered spots, in lots or in garages. Average garage parking rates are $1.25 per hour. Only $1.00 per hour for Knighton Garage on the corner of Colonial Drive and West Street.

For a downloadable map of Annapolis, go to Visit Annapolis.