Consider this video an intermission from the woodcarving norm. Today I had a nice break from the woodshop and went on a great hiking day trip with 12 boys from camp to Stone Mountain State Park, in North Carolina of course. We took the 'strenuous' 4.5 mile Stone Mountain loop trail to the summit, then on to a 200 foot waterfall. Along the way one of the kids spotted a bee on a yellow flower so I quickly got a pretty nice video of it hovering overhead like a helicopter.
Also, not pictured, I carved a woodspirit in a piece of found wood and kept my tradition of giving it to a total stranger as an act of random kindness. Sometimes I like to just leave my carving somewhere that it can be found but today I gave it to a little boy about 8 or 9 years old walking the trail with his mom and dad. It brought a big smile when I said, "Would you like this woodspirit stick?" and of course I got a big "Yes" and a "Thank you".
Living in the mountains of North Carolina I have spent almost 30 very
rewarding years working with at-risk kids in a wilderness camping program as a counselor, outdoor educator, and woodshop teacher. To learn more about what my blog is all about, just scroll down this sidebar to "About my blog..."
1. Woodcarving/Woodwork: Working wood has been a lifetime obsession for me and I enjoy sharing what I know. It is my belief that hands-on and experiential learning has a direct and profound effect on the development of a child's intellect, confidence, and character. Projects of mine (and my students) will be posted as they progress and I will occasionally include a video tutorial. All of my videos can be found here .
2. Bushcraft/Primitive Living Skills: Finding ways to live closer to the land has always fascinated me. Whether it's building a shelter, fire starting, animal tracking, or just making rustic furniture... you'll eventually see some of it here.
3. Long Distance backpacking, canoeing, & bicycling: Some of my long distance adventures include thru-hiking the 2,600 mile Pacific Crest Trail, Mexico to Canada and I solo paddled the 1,800 mile Yukon river across northwest Canada and Alaska to the Bering sea. More detailed accounts of these and many other adventures can be found here
4. Sustainable Living: I'm always looking for better ways to do more by using less. It's not so much an "environmental" thing to me as it is a quest for personal independence from material things and finding a path to more substantive living .
5. Scouting Activity: As a scoutmaster of 6 years (and currently assistant scoutmaster) I'm actively involved with the troop and "Order of the Arrow" where it is a joy to volunteer hundreds of hours each year because investing in the next generation insures a better tomorrow for everyone. In an era when most schools don't value hands-on learning, outdoor education, and the arts... scouting soars in meeting these critical experiences for boys.
6. Profiles: Behind everyone's success you can usually find a trail of some very significant mentors and teachers along the way. And sometimes you don't completely understand how someone affected your life for the better until many years later. You'll find some of those stories here.