I have taught the ways of the wilderness for well over thirty years and have authored a novel which dives deep into the shadows which follow you as you traverse wilderness trails. It is my hope to reach as many people as possible to tell everyone that the wilderness is not a place to be wary of. It is the only place where a person can dig deep into their soul and find that which is hidden to them by modern day society.
~ R.G. Wright / Hawks Shadow

Sunday, November 22, 2020

How to build a survival shelter

 Survival skills are an absolute must if you travel in the back country. The "what if" scenario is always following you as you wander or paddle. 

For example; what if you are traveling through the woods on a motorized ATV and it breaks down? You're a long way in, there is no way of walking out. Cell coverage is non existent, your cell phone has just become an expensive flashlight.  

Day-light is fading and the cool night air is pushing down on the land. The reality of being stuck in the woods sinks into your mind as you grapple with the situation. 

It's time to get to work. Set your mind free by using your hands. 

Your first task is to build a shelter which will keep you from the elements and prevent you from getting hypothermia. The shelter shown in this video is the only shelter which is easy to build by hand and it will keep you from freezing to death. 

The most important thing to do is stay calm, don't panic. A mistake out here can cost you dearly. Build your shelter and accept the situation for what it is. 

The chances of ever being in a situation such as this is remote, but if it should happen, it's better to be prepared then to be shivering in the dark as fear entwines your soul with its cold fingers. 

Saturday, November 21, 2020

How to build a functional fire pit stand

 Cooking a meal over an open fire is synonymous with camping.  

Several technical problems have to be overcome prior to placing a pot on the fire.
First - you have to have a place to put your pot so that it rests in the flames/coals to heat whatever it is that you are cooking. 
Second, you have to have a means to regulate the heat so that you can cook your food properly. 
Finally you have to ensure the pot will not flop over and spill your meal into the embrace of the fire. 

All of these problems can be solved in many different ways - This video explains how to solve this dilemma using a simple tripod, six feet of paracord, a 1/2" pulley and a tent peg.  

Super easy to build, and even easier to operate, this method is fool proof. It will ensure you will be able to cook and keep warm, any meal that fits in a pot. 

Camping is a life like no other, it will take you into a world which is removed from the controlled world of civilization. You will find yourself in a place where everything that surrounds you is part of a huge multifaceted organism.

Using your hands to create something such as a tripod connects you in a very real way to the world of the green. 

Please remember that when you cut a sapling, you are taking the life of a young tree, select saplings such a poplar. These trees will re-sprout from the base.  

The beaver clan taught me this - the trees they take will re-populate within ten years of their culling.
Beaver with maple sapling - R.G.Wright

Most Campgrounds and Provincial Parks do not permit
the cutting of any living tree. That is good thing!

The tripod in this video was made on my own property and the saplings were selectively harvested. 

This tripod can be made from dead branches - simply increase the stance distance of the legs and you are good to go. 

Happy camping!

Sunday, November 15, 2020

The Story of a Bear

 Years ago, I had the privilege of meeting a young black bear.  

He allowed me to wander with him for several years and our time together changed my world. 

I took a walk on a mid November night. The weather was unseasonably warm and the universe was wide open for my eyes to wander from star to star. 

I sat down on a rock outcrop known as deer ridge and decided to tell you the story of how I met the bear I called Blackie. 

Some words in this video could be considered offensive.   

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

A Beaver family finds a new home

 A beaver family is a tight knit unit. The kits are born in early spring and spend at least two years with their parents. During this time they learn the essentials of being a beaver. 

Dam construction and repair, lodge construction, channel building and most importantly, how to identify predators. These are some of the lessons mom and dad teach their kits. 

The beavers in this video were displaced from their home by people who just simply don't get it. Instead of placing mesh around their shoreline trees, they tore the lodge apart and chased the beavers from the marsh they inhabited. One kit died in the process. 

It is my hope, that simple videos like this will help people understand that the wild folks of the forest have much to teach us.  

I watched this family for three years, they accepted me in their home. I floated for hours in my canoe as they paddled around me. I sat quietly by the shoreline as they chewed on saplings I brought them. Mom would sit on my foot as she groomed her fur. 

I learned volumes about these little forest folk and I learned much about myself. 

I hope you enjoy this video; shot with an older camera it is a bit grainy, but moments like this are rarely repeated. 

With much respect to those who care. 


Sunday, October 25, 2020

Collecting firewood

 Most sites I have camped on are picked clean of firewood. 

Shreborne Lake - R.G. Wright

Generations of canoeists have wandered in ever-widening circles into the woods to gather the dry firewood which will sustain them while on-site. 

Most of the time, I find it much easier just to venture out in my canoe to collect the dead wood which is normally in abundance along the shoreline of any wilderness lake. 

A campfire is something we all look forward to, especially when the temperature drops into the single digits. The shear volume of wood required for a couple of days of camping, can be somewhat daunting. 

Camping is a lot of work, but in this case, work is fun. When you're collecting your firewood, use the time to investigate the forest. You will be amazed what you can discover when your canoe is beached and you are wandering through the woods with your saw in hand. 

Happy adventuring.  

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

How to dry out a tent

Setting up camp is full of expectations and excitement, the days ahead show promise of adventure and freedom. 

When it's time to strike camp - thoughts of unpacking your gear once you arrive home fills your head with thoughts which are not conducive to making you smile. 

A wet tent is a problem because you can't leave it packed. Mold and mildew will ruin the shelter and stink up your camp closet. You must set the tent up upon arriving home and wait until it dries out. 

A simple way to preclude this extra step is to dry the tent out at camp before packing it away. If the campsite has bushes, simply place the tent on top of the them and let the air dry the shelter out. 

It's fast, efficient and beautifully simple. The entire tent will be ready to bag and put away until your next adventure. 

Make sure the bushes are the gentle type and not full of thorns.  Of course, this method doesn't work if it is raining. 😉

Happy camping!   

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

How to tame campfire smoke

 Once the tents are set and the gear is organized, Campers gravitate to the fire pit and spend hours contemplating life while staring into the flames. It is a beautiful sight. 

The smoke eventually finds you, targets you, and the game is on. You and your friends end up running around the fire pit trying to get away from the smoke. So much for the tranquility.   

If you make a few simple changes to the pit, the fire will burn efficiently and smoke will take a back seat to your ringside seat. 

This is my go-to technique for creating an efficient and safe wood burning fire pit. 



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