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

Sunday, December 10, 2023

Why Use A Hiking Pole?

The forest has a way of seeping into your soul and showing you life the way I believe it is meant to be; not a conjuring of peoples imagination and indifference. 

Hiking in the woods is a passion of mine; it has been thus since I was a young boy. Many years ago I was told to carry a walking staff to aid me in my wanderings. At first; as most young boys do, I didn't listen. Many adventures later, I learned to grab my staff prior to entering the woods. 

The land is full of surprises such as streams which are too wide to jump across, puddles which are so thick with mud you will sacrifice a shoe should you decide to wade through them. 

A good walking staff will aid you in your hiking. It can be used for so many different purposes, it has remained a constant companion mine for many years. 

Pole vault across a wide stream and you will see how fun a forest wander can be. Use it to test the depth of a puddle before deciding to offer the seemingly innocent body of water your foot. 

Hang your pack from it to keep it off the wet ground or use it as the main post of a shelter should the rain force you to hunker down for a spell. 

These are just a few of the uses a good staff will provide you. 

Happy wandering

Monday, October 9, 2023

Shelter In The Woods

 I have seen a major increase in shelters being built in wilderness places. Most of these are built simply for the sole purpose of gaining views on YouTube. 

The amount of damage that is left behind by the builders is brutal. Young trees by the dozens cut down, ground dug up, large Balsam Fir's cut down for their branches, moss pulled out of the ground in bucket loads, It's freaking shameful. 

The shelter depicted in this video was created out of used lumber. The unit is self standing with no ground penetration. I built it so that I could take it apart and move it should the need arise. 

I realize that it looks invasive; however, I can attest to the fact that many wild animals have used this shelter for a place to "hang out". Porcupines, Red Squirrels, Chipmunks and a host of other furry critters have left their mark on this cozy place in the woods.  

This is the perfect place to hang up my gear, light a fire and melt into the forest which surrounds me. 

Happy Wandering

Saturday, September 2, 2023

Pit Fires - Why You Should Not Use Them

 Pit Fires are a craze on YouTube which drives me nuts for the following reason.

How it is done and why it should not be used:

A vertical pit is dug into the ground to a depth of a foot or more. An angled hole is then dug beside the main hole and intersects the main pit at the bottom. 

This provides air to the fire which will be stoked in the main pit. The setup provides for a very efficient fire which is relatively smokeless; however, there is a major issue with this technique being used in forests. 

Forest floors are comprised of a layer of humus which is extremely combustible. A fire lit within this layer poses a major threat because of its ability to spread unseen for hours.  

I have witnessed this kind of fire spread and it is scary to say the least. 

The fire had traveled at least 20 feet from it's origin to where I was walking - bare foot. 
When I scraped the ground with a stick, flames erupted and then mass panic ensued. 
Luckily, there was a pressurized water source nearby which was used to extinguish the fire. 

Had I not discovered the fire - by happenstance - the forest would have erupted in flame. All of this was the fault of myself and my fellow campers. 

We were; at the time, novices and had no idea that our actions could have had serious consequences. 

I produced this video with the hope that fellow campers will opt for one of the alternatives shown or devise another which will be safe for them and the forest in which they choose to camp.

Wander and Wonder.

Sunday, July 30, 2023

2023 Subaru Outback Wilderness - Can it get me there?


The Subaru Outback Wilderness Wagon is touted as being an off road capable machine - easily holding it's own on rough roads and terrain. 

I had decided to camp at a site which could be accessed via two routes, one was via a portage trail and the other was via an unmaintained logging road. 

This road has claimed everything from tailpipes to bumpers; however, I decided that it was time to put the vehicle to the test and take a chance running this wild stretch of dirt road. 

My resolve was firm but my nerves were questioning my decision when the Subi's front wheels hit the first rut. 

It wasn't long before the Wilderness in the Outback taught me to calm down and have fun, as this powerful vehicle tackled the road and showed me that the Subi was more than up to the task. 

Happy Wandering

Camp Gear for Every Trip


Every person who has ever carried a knapsack or provision bag across a portage trail knows that every pound counts. 

There are; however, certain items which simply can't be left at home. 

This video shows the basic items which are necessary for an enjoyable camping experience. 

Happy Camping.  

Sunday, February 26, 2023

Snowshoe Breakfast - A Morning In The Forest

 It's always good to get back to basics. 

Deep Snow and a pair of snowshoes places my mind into a place of quiet comfort. 

Lighting a fire by flint and steel reminds me that the stresses of life can be unraveled and placed into their proper perspectives. 

A quiet meal and a warm fire reminds me that this is exactly where I belong. 

The buckskin shirt was made by me almost thirty years ago and was made from a deer which was killed by a vehicle. I wear it when I need to return home. 


Sunday, January 22, 2023

Fly In To Opeongo Lake - A Lake of Strong Winds

 The winter has set in and brother cold has embraced the area; freezing the lakes and blanketing the ground with a thick layer of snow. The canoes are hibernating and the paddles are stowed.  

The videos and photos I took during the previous summer become an escape and allow me to "feel" the pull of the paddle and the gentle curves of my canoe. 

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 becomes a tool, facilitating the ability to virtually fly over my favorite canoe lakes and plan for the coming summer. 

In this video, I couple the virtual flight to an actual canoe trip I took last summer. The trip; unlike my usual trips, did not include any portaging but rather several days exploring the North Arm of Opeongo Lake in Algonquin Park. 

Opeongo is a vast expanse of water and is prone to ill temper. She invites the wind to play on her surface; giving brother wind a huge playground in which he proves that he does indeed, rule. Waves, higher than the gunwales of your canoe, will challenge the most experienced of paddlers.

Opeongo is not a lake to take for granted. You play by her rules and be sure to know you limitations before attempting to cross her water, should she be stirred up. 

I hope you can lose yourself in this virtual flight as we fly from Stanhope airport to one of the largest lakes in Algonquin Park. Have a seat, buckle up, and lets hit the throttle. 

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