Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Guide to Bushcraft and Woodcraft Skills now posted

As promised in the previous post, I've published the guide I was working on.  Because of it's length, I decided to add it as a separate page on this blog.  Just click the tab at the top of the page entitled "Basic Guide to Bushcraft and Woodcraft".  If anyone has any comments or notices any glaring mistakes or omissions, Please let me know by commenting on this post.  I hope you enjoy reading it and I hope it is in someway useful to you.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Bushcraft and Woodcraft Basic Skills

A while back I was reading some articles about different situations where people were hurt, lost or died in the woods.  The one thing that kept occurring to me in almost every story, was how unprepared most of these people were.  How a simple woods kit and some knowledge and there would have been no reason to write the articles because there would have been no tragedy.  After thinking about this for a few days, I decided to put some thoughts down on paper, a few simple thoughts turned into four pages, then six pages and at last count nine pages.  What started out as an idea for a blog post or two, turned into is a basic guide to bushcraft skills, with an emphasis on being prepared and aware in the woods.  I'm pretty sure it's almost done now, I just need to write a summary and edit the entire document a couple of dozen times, and when it's ready, I'll be posting it up on here one section at a time.  So if I haven't been posting as much recently, this is one of the reasons why.  Hopefully I'll post the first section in a day or two.  In the meantime,  Have a great week and be stay safe in the woods.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Personalizing your Gear

My Northeast Voyageur mark
Woodburned into spoon handle
As time has gone on, I've ended up making or modifying more and more of my gear.  Something I've started doing recently is personalizing the gear I make and use.  If your into making outdoor crafts I encourage you to do the same.  Maker's Marks, Trademarks and Signatures have been used for thousands of years, Create your own Maker's Mark and put it on your gear, It identifies it as yours and keeps things from getting mixed up when camping with others.  I like a simple, unique mark that is descriptive.  The mark I use is a simple "V"  for Voyageur with the right side pointing northeast like a compass needle. (See Photo).  You can draw your mark on, burn it on or even get stamps and punches made with your mark.  If you sell crafts or gear, It identifies your products and helps people remember your business. So be creative with your gear and make sure everyone knows who made it!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

8/3 - 8/6 Adirondacks Family Trip

We decided to get away up north for the Labor day weekend. One of our favorite places to go as a family is Moss Lake in the central Adirondacks. We got started a little later than we expected and arrived at the lake around 8:00 pm, just as it was getting dark. Moss Lake is a small lake with campsites surrounding it. Some of the sites are accessed by canoe only and some are hike in, Two of the sites are handicap accessible. One of the best things about them and many other primitive camp sites in the Adirondack's is that they are free of charge, just sign the register and go. Since we got there so late, we chose the closest available hike in campsite and got the tent setup quickly which was a good thing because it immediately started raining. The next morning we woke up to the sounds of loons calling, and decided to move to another site on the other side of the lake that is right on the shore. We packed up, hiked over and got setup by late morning. We spent that entire day just hanging around camp relaxing.

 These guys swam by while my wife and youngest daughter were filtering some water.  

On a small island in the middle of the lake is an Osprey nest, and every so often we could hear the Osprey calling. My oldest daughter walked down the lake to get as close as possible without bothering it to get some pictures. Although I couldn't see them, It looked like they were feeding young ones in the nest. 

One of my favorite things about the north country are the Loons. Watching them dive and then reappear sometimes hundreds of feet away from where they started always fascinates me. Listening to their long, haunting calls is a great way to wake up in the morning. I tried to get good pictures of them but they were apparently not in a photogenic mood, staying just out of camera range all weekend.

The last full day there was spent hiking some of the trails and enjoying the scenery. The next morning was spent packing up to go home. In my opinion, The Adirondack's are one of the most beautiful places in the Northeastern United States. You can climb mountains, visit waterfalls or hike to old growth forest all in the same day.

It is home to countless bird species, deer, black bear, and the occasional moose. If you live anywhere near the north country and haven't visited, then I encourage you to go. If you do go, please do me one favor, Please pick up after yourself and carry out what you carry in. It always upsets me to see that someone has left garbage in such a beautiful place. Beer cans and aluminum foil do not burn in a fire ring and the next person (My family in this case) end up cleaning it up and carrying it out. Thanks for reading, Have a great week and go explore.