I have taught the ways of the wilderness for well over thirty years and have authored a novel which dives deep into the shadows that 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

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Simple camp backrest


 The winter woods are full of wonder and silent secrets which have been written upon the snow for us to read and decipher. Snowshoes are a perfect conveyance for anyone wishing to reach the pages of the book. 

Snowshoes disperse your weight thus allowing you to traverse deep snow with relative ease.
 
Once you have a comfortable camp setup and a fire is radiating heat into your shelter, put your snowshoes to work and create a backrest. 

I refer to a term "kick" in this video. What I am referring to is the long piece of wood which extends from the back of a traditional snowshoe commonly referred to as the Algonquin snowshoe.


The "kick" helps to keep your feet tracking straight while walking. It can be a hinderance if you find yourself in dense bush but it is invaluable when traversing open fields and lakes. 

I prefer the bearpaw or modified bearpaw snowshoe as shown in this video. It disperses my weight perfectly and allows for ease of movement in the wilderness through which I wander. 

Hope this is of some service to my fellow wanderers. 

Happy wandering. 



  

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Solo Winter Shelter - Effective and Easy


Snowshoeing into a winter wonderland is a beautiful way to spend a day. The silence of the woods and the clean crisp air invites curiosity and adventure. 

Winter hiking, especially in the deep woods, brings along with it the potential of mishaps which could place the wanderer into a survival situation. 

The very act of walking in deep snow with snowshoes is strenuous and could cause you to sweat. This in turn could cool your body down to the point of shivering. This is first stage hypothermia and if you are a long way from your starting point, you are now in trouble. 

There are many fancy shelters being displayed on social media; however, very few are portable and easy to set up. Not withstanding the environmental impact they cause. 

Using a simple eight by ten poly tarp, four carabiners, a pole and twenty feet or so of cordage; your shelter can be set up within a few minutes. All of this can be easily carried in or on your day pack. 

Once a fire is going and you are tucked into the shelter, you can remove the wet clothing and dry it within the shelter. 

This shelter is wonderful to sleep in. The white tarp allows moonlight to fill the interior with a glow which is comforting and beautiful. The simple lean-to style captures heat from the fire which easily brings the temperature of the shelter up to well above the freezing point. 

The best part of this set up is it's simplicity and the low impact it has on the forest.

Happy wandering. 

 



   

Monday, February 8, 2021

Testing a camp stove


Packing for a trip through the woods requires a few fundamental items. One of the items you should carry is a portable camp stove. 

Be it the humble hobo stove or a commercially made unit is a matter of choice and function. 

Always test your equipment before heading out. Ensure it meets or exceeds your needs and does not add too much bulk or weight to your pack. 

In this video I test out the Uberleben Stoker Flatpack Stove. 

I am not affiliated with Uberleben or any company that sells their gear. I simply want to share with you  the equipment that can handle the reality of the bush. 

Happy Wandering

 

 

Sunday, January 24, 2021

Testing out an Uberleben Kessel pot


Carrying a small provisions pack is always a good idea if you wander amongst the trees. Being able to eat on the trail and obtain drinkable water is a comfort which should not be overlooked.  

Having the means to boil water and cook food requires three essential items: 
1. A cooking pot - easily cleaned and light weight.
2. A source of heat - fire, camp stove or a hobo stove.
3. A means to light a fire or gas stove. 

Item one (1) on the list can range from a single walled stainless steel thermos to a stainless steel cook pot. 
There are many camp pots on the market and most of them will serve you well out on the trail. 

In this video, I test out an Oberleben Kessel 2.0 pot which I was very fortunate to receive as a gift. 

After testing this cooking utensil out; I can say with certainty, that it is the best cooking pot I have used in a lifetime of being out here.  

My old stainless steel pot will now reside in my tipi (teepee) as a permanent fixture and the new pot will be carried with me wherever my wanders take me. 

Notes:
I put the handle on the wrong way in this video. I should have read the instructions. Oops. 

I am not affiliated with Uberleben or any company that sells their gear. I simply want to share with you  the equipment that can handle the reality of the bush. 

Happy Wandering. 



 


   

Packing for a winter day hike

 


Wandering through the woods on a quiet snow clad day is an experience which is unique. You leave footsteps in your wake which shows you your past, the unbroken snow in front of you is a canvas upon which you will write your future.  

Such a hike leads to many discoveries and deep self examination. Your mind, body and spirit can join as one entity and soak in the beauty of the wilderness around you. 


Winnie the porcupine


Having a small provisions pack helps to extend your day in the woods. Knowing how much to carry is knowledge only gained through experience. 

This video explains the bare bone basics of a provisions pack for a typical day hike in the woods.  

Remember to carry only that which you need, all the rest is just extra weight. The snow will demand more of your energy to enjoy its beauty, the extra stuff you have in your pack will become a burden and it will detract from your experience. 

Happy wandering.   




Saturday, January 23, 2021

Harvesting Firewood Sustainably


 A forest does not need humans to manage it. The forest will evolve and change as dictated by nature. 

When people move into the area, the forest comes under immense pressure. Vehicle traffic and firewood cutting are high on the list of culprits. 

Heating a home with firewood takes a lot of effort. if you gather the wood from your own woodlot, managing your forest for sustainability becomes an absolute must. 

In this video, I showcase a multi-stalked Maple tree being culled for firewood.  Rot was developing between the trunks thereby threatening the entire tree. 

These multi-trunked trees are perfect for harvesting. Keep the straightest trunk and cull the rest. The remaining trunk will then have access to the entire root system and it will flourish. 

Felling trees is dangerous and should not be attempted by untrained or inexperienced people. 
Many people are maimed or killed every year because they attempted to put a tree on the ground.  

The method shown in this video is the safest method I know. It relies on a hinge of wood and well placed wedges. There are many videos on social media which will show you how to attain the proper cuts. 

Practice will give you the confidence to succeed. 

Happy homesteading. 









 


Thursday, January 21, 2021

Footprints


 When wandering, I'm always on the lookout for trail cameras. They are generally camouflaged and are tricky to find. Some individuals hang them about eight feet off the ground and point them on a forty five degree angle toward the trail. These are almost impossible to spot. 

Why do I look for these devices? It alerts me to the presence of potential hunting activities which in turn scares the wits out me if I am not in blaze orange. 

No, I'm not trespassing. I have found these cameras in Algonquin and surrounding Crown lands.

Private land owners are now resorting to using these cameras to inform them when a trespass occurs. I have talked to several land owners and the general consensus among them is that people are abusing the land. The destruction of living trees for Youtube shelters, tarps and garbage left to pollute once pristine woods and dangerous fire pits are high on the list of complaints. 

An elder, a long time ago, told me to "just leave footprints", it is a memory I carry with me into the woods every time I wander.

I just wanted to pass along this simple wisdom from a man who taught me how to "see" the forest. 

Happy Wandering. 


 

 

 

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