Archive for October, 2012

Final Journal Entries

Friday August 31, 2012

Watching the sunset on the ridge after a great day.  I caught 4 fish today!  I’ve completed my goal to shoot something with my bow and catch a fish with a bone hook.  Something really great has happened since Lynx left and the others returned.  We are really a cohesive unit now.  Miles just led a check-in circle and it was awesome.  He’s a great guy.  He’s been really thoughtful and good to be with out here.  We’ve decided to leave on the morning of the 4th.  We will have a ceremony of our own design on the evening of the 3rd.  Only 3 days left of the project.  Crazy.  Its been a magical time.  I feel like I’ve been out here long enough that I’ve become a new person.

I caught four fish in just a couple hours. We definitely should have fished more.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

First day of September.  We’ve done well.  Had a cold sleep last night.  Will have to wear all my clothes tonight.  Lounging in the sun all morning arguing about evolution.  Not bad arguments though.  Today I’m going to make a marmot trap, go on a hunting walk, then it’ll be dinner time.  Its hot today but was so cold last night.  Stefane makes a good buffalo.  He is dancing around in a blanket while Neil shoots at him.  Good fun and good entertainment.  We are a real tribe now.  Lounging and making up hunting games.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Nice and warm today.  Went and checked the marmot trap.  No bites.  Lynx came back yesterday.  We couldn’t believe our eyes.  Its fine having her back even though we were excited to finish the project without her.  I slept great last night.  Wore all my clothes and was super cozy.  This trip is really winding down.  We just have the rest of today, tomorrow and a day of hiking.  I’m excited to be back in the world but it has been a great experience out here.  So carefree, stressfree.  I know I’ll miss it but its not sustainable here.  I need family, culture, mentoring, children and elders.  Right now we’re a broken, cultureless people.  And we’d be starving without all the food we brought. 

Hiked up to the ridge to see lake Chelayne.  It was amazing.  I sat on a rock in the sun and thought about my life.  Some red-tails and sharp-shinned hawks put on a show for me.

Monday, September 3, 2012

I’m sitting here looking at my marmot trap which nothing has touched in 2 days.  Had a good breakfast of Lynx’s food but had to leave and get some alone time.  Its nice being alone.  I’m comfortable, leaning against a long, sun warming my back, eating the rest of my saskatoons.  Its good weather, the clouds are beautiful.  There are two small marmots watching me.  I wonder if I could kill one somehow. 

What skills are important to me?  I think the answer to that question has changed this summer.  Its really unlikely that we’d ever have to live fully primitively and it would be super hard to find a group of people to do that with.  Trying to live like hunter-gatherers without 1,000 years of culture and land-tending behind us is impossible.  Tracking and hunting with a bow will always be basic and important to me.  But I feel like living off the land by whatever means necessary is more important now than being purely primitive.  Chickens, goats, gardens, supplemented by hunting might be my future.  Also, more important is a regenerative nature-based culture.  Songs, traditions, ceremonies, rights of passage.  My problem with the Art of Mentoring was that no one was wild enough, but my problem with wild people is that they have no culture.  There’s no social structure, codes of conduct, etc.  No experimentation with what works to make everyone happy and healthy.  I think I need to pursue wisdom and wildness in the wilderness and through tracking, hunting and other primitive skills but I need to learn from Martin Prechtel and the AoM’s.  I want to do more primitive trips like these but with more experienced hunters and fishermen. 

I want a living situation that my parents can be a part of, that everyone involved’s families can be a part of.  My parents aren’t going to come do this and I wouldn’t want them to.  It would completely misrepresent how I want to live.  I want to live free and wild in a beautiful landscape but not in a barren alpine meadow.  If the land can’t support 30 people or more then there is no reason to be there trying to live primitively.  Much better to have gardens and livestock that could actually feed people.  My parents would actually love to come live on a farm, eat healthy food and be part of a small community.  I think I’m just about ready to start tending a piece of land for the rest of my life.  Tend wild gardens but live off domestic ones and livestock.  Do lots of fishing and hunting to supplement. 

One of the passes on our hike home.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

We hiked all day.  Now we are sitting around the fire, ready for a feast.  It was a beautiful hike.  Climbed 3 small passes.  Probably hiked 8 miles.  My pack is so much lighter than it was.  My shoulders are sore though.  Tomorrow we’ll be in town!  Only a short jaunt down the trail to the truck.  We’ll skip breakfast and go get smoothies.  Crazy that this experience is almost over.  I’m feeling some major time warp action.  I’m also feeling the gifts of this experience.  I’m going to have a lot to share with people.  Much to inspire people.  I feel so comfortable with all my gear.  My sandals break and I fix them so fast now.  My moccasins and brogues are awesome.  My buffalo is super soft from this month of use.  Its good.  I am comfortable.

This was a very surreal moment. What is this strange vehicle?

Thursday, September 6, 2012

We are back.  Super weird and disorienting.  I’m eating like crazy.  Major time warp action.  The smoothies were delicious.  Went out to breakfast with Miles this morning.  It might have been the best breakfast I’ve ever had.  I start work on Monday.  Craziness. 

The crew

That is the last of my journal entries.  A lot of people have asked me about the trip but I never feel like I explain it very well.  If you have specific question about what we ate, how we felt, specific challenges, the tools we used, how our clothing worked, etc. please contact me and ask.  It was a very rich experience and I’m going to organize my own month-long primitive trips every summer – free for those who are experienced and can put together the required gear list.  Here is more information about the trips I’ll be organizing: https://naturalskills.wordpress.com/2013-hunter-gatherer-excursion/.  Thanks for reading.

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