New Video @ Outdoor Adventurecraft on YouTube!
To connect with my viewers has always been one of my chief endeavors. In this, the next video in my Winter Expedition Series, I had the privilege of spending some time outdoors with my friend Brent. A friend I made because of Outdoor Adventurecraft!
In the video interview we explore Brent’s personal outdoor passions and talk about what draws him to the outdoors. We get to goof around and have a little fun too. In addition the article that follows is very special this time out because it was written by Brent himself! He took the time to reflect on that weekend and share his experience with us all here at Outdoor Adventurecraft!
Full Article Continues Below.
The following article was contributed by Brent York.
Making New Friends.
Friendships aren’t just born, they’re cultivated. They start with common interests, and eventually lead to shared experiences that last a lifetime. So when I got the invite to come out and join Russel and Joel in the hot tent for my first winter camp, I knew I had to take it.
I met Russel through a Facebook post in a New Brunswick bushcraft group that he runs. He invited local bushcrafters to meet at the Jubilee Buffet restaurant for lunch. Normally, I’m nervous and shy around new people. I tend to keep to a tight knit group of friends that I’ve had for years, but I figured why not see what this is all about; after all I’d never met anyone from NB that seemed even remotely interested in bushcraft.
We met for lunch, hit it off, and had a great chat. We decided a repeat was in order and even though we both ate waaaay too much Chinese food, a repeating bushcraft get together at the Jubilee was born.
My First Winter Camp.
Up until this point I’d never gone winter camping. I have camped plenty of times in the summer, fall and spring, but had avoided the winter. I felt I didn’t have the knowledge, and as I’d mentioned previously, I’d never met anyone that had. Eventually this came up in a discussion during one of our lunches at the Jubilee. Russel seemed surprised that I’d never winter camped and had proposed perhaps we get out sometime during the winter.
Talk turned to a huge trapping and camping weekend that he had been working on and that he’d been very excited for. This became the subject of several of our lunches to come and I was delighted to hear it was coming along nicely.
Then Russel asked me if I wanted to come out during that production for Friday night…
I was excited by the prospect, but also a little nervous. Would this “fair weather” camping softie be able to hack a winter camp? In the end excitement won out, and I agreed. I really wanted to get some snow-shoe time in because I’d just got new snow shoes and I hadn’t snowshoe’d since I was a child. That and the chance to get some woods therapy in a season when I normally stare out the window depressed due to a lack of woods therapy. Hell yes. I’m in!
Arriving At the Scene.
The day finally arrived. I grabbed my pack, my dry bag full of food both for myself and the guys, my cot, my sleeping bag, a sled and my snow-shoes and poles. I was ready to rock. Or, so I thought! I loaded up the sled, pushed it up over the snowbank at the side of the road, stepped up onto the bank… and post-holed! After a little struggling I got out of the snow and put on my snowshoes and began what I figured was going to be a leisurely snow-shoe.
How wrong I was. In reality, I had packed a great deal of food/gear, and it was raining. The snow shoeing was going OK, but the sled was the best I could get on short notice, and really wasn’t good for towing. I also learned just how out of shape I am. I wasn’t nearly as prepared as I thought I was for what laid ahead. But if there’s one quality my wife will tell you I have, it’s that I’m stubborn to a fault. So I put my head down and hashed it out, taking breaks where needed.
I snowshoe’d for what seemed like an hour. Up hills, down hills, using my GPS on my phone to navigate. It was raining, and it was getting dark. Suddenly I heard voices. I called out from the trees to let them know I was in the area, and finally dragged my sorry frame and sled into camp. A humbling experience to be sure. Much different than the pack hikes I was used to in summer! It certainly showed me just how much room I have to improve.
It took me longer to get there than Russel expected, but I wasn’t the only one slightly behind. I got there and they were still setting up the canvas tent. Eventually they got it together and we lit up a lantern, hung it, and set up all our gear. We strung a line to hang our wet clothes on, and then lit a roaring fire in Russel’s home-built camp stove. It worked like a champ, the tent heated up quickly and gear started to dry out. Ahhh… comfort 🙂
It was time for a surprise. I opened the dry bag and pulled out all manner of things for us to have for supper. I quickly chopped up some onions and mushrooms to fry up, along with some home-made Italian sausages. We discussed the various things I like to cook (check that… I love to cook), and we ate our food and from that moment on I was bestowed the nickname, “Cookie”.
We spent the rest of the night having a good time telling jokes and stories, and playing some cards. You just can’t get any better outdoor therapy than that!
The next morning.
After waking up the next morning we cooked breakfast (bacon and eggs with some garlic and chive butter), made some coffee and got to work making the, “In the Tent with Brent” video that can be seen above. While the video is an interview with Russel asking about my outdoor background and what makes me tick, the best part of it is where Russel and I were able to give back to the Outdoor Adventurecraft community!
You see, a few short weeks before I had been in the US on a trip to California. I had acquired three, “Light My Fire” ferrocerium rod fire starters to surprise Russ with as a give away for part of his big trip. At the time, I had no idea I’d be part of the trip, but I wanted to give back to the community. In the end it turned out I was able to experience my first winter camp, spend some time outside of the Jubilee with my new friends, and to be able to be part of the giveaway!
If there’s one moral to this whole story, it’s don’t be afraid to meet new people and embrace new experiences. If you’re local or in town, come to the bushcraft lunch meetup that we have once a month! You just might make some great friends, maybe learn something, and have some laughs. One thing I can guarantee is you’ll eat waaaaay too much chinese food. Who knows, you might even end up getting some woods therapy with new friends.
Hope to see you there.
— Cookie (Brent)
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