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  1. O

    Nice Whitetail after eight days of hunting:

    Persistance paid off. It was very cold and windy. Spotted movement in some small cedars. Identified it as a deer, then a large deer, then a buck, and then a BIG buck. He was ghosting along, and I lost sight of him every time he stopped. Finally he stuck his head into an opening and a neck shot...
  2. O

    Heads up on Swedish gas mask bags

    During WWII, Sweden thought Germany was going to invade, and went into high production on excellent quality military equipment. Much of it was recently sold as surplus. One of the best bits was gas mask bags made of heavy canvas with leather bottoms. I bought some online some time ago, but they...
  3. O

    Firebulding practice in inclement weather

    Today is a day made for hypothermia, just above freezing and raining fairly hard. There's a foot of slushy snow on the ground. Since the paradox of fire is that the more you need one the more difficult it is to build, I figured I'd take a hike and practice. I took a small tarp, a knife, a...
  4. O

    Favorite Axes

    Starting from seven o'clock and proceeding clockwise: A military axe from a surplus store, made by Hults Bruk and marked with the Swedish three crowns. It's about a 2 1/2 pound head on a twenty-nine-inch handle. Light enough to carry on a camping trip, large enough to do serious work. A...
  5. O

    Is it feasible to straighten a warped axe handle?

    Picked up an old military surplus Hults Bruks that looks unused. The handle has perfect vertical grain. BUT it's taken a remarkable warp over the years. I was thinking about sticking it in a big pot of boiling water, then arranging it between boards in a vise and leaving it for a while. I...
  6. O

    Christmas three-day

    Didn't have enough days off to visit relatives with the rest of the family, so took the dogs camping for the holiday. Low was 12*F, but cozy in a canvas pyramid tent with a woodstove. Got in a couple nice long hikes and enjoyed the stars, a snowfall, and the primal chores of gathering firewood...
  7. O

    Any good military surplus stores in London?

    I'll be there on Monday, just for the day. Interested in seeing what's available that's not on the US market. I tend to like European military gear - Swedish mess kits and mittens, Belgian sweaters, Polish rain capes and a German parka are among my treasures.
  8. O

    Repairing a canvas tent

    I was just given a British military tent. A "12x12", although it's actually 12'x15'. Someone explain that to me. Anyway, it's in great shape except that a mouse ate a tunnel into it while it was in storage. When I unrolled it, there was a series of holes with a pile of birdseed in the middle. I...
  9. O

    Acorn bread

    Have been leaching the tannin out of red oak acorns and using them in bread. Everyone who's tried it likes it. Nutty tasting, and even a little sweet. Dip acorns in boiling water for about thirty seconds to soften the shells. Open them while they're still warm. I use a handcrank nut...
  10. O

    Wigwam/Wikiup/Bender

    Built this today. It was pretty cozy with a canvas tarp thrown over it. Took about four hours. Be interesting to see how many years it lasts, and which part fails first. Indians around here used to make shelters like these and use them seasonally, leaving the frames in place and taking the bark...
  11. O

    Found a baby raven with a broken wing

    Bunch of ravens making a racket in the woods, so I investigated. Found a young one with a compound fracture. I think it jumped out of the nest (it's about that age). Got the bone back inside the skin, but couldn't align the ends. Immobilized it with vet wrap, and it's in a chicken coop now...
  12. O

    Been catching these right in front of the house lately:

    One or two every day on lines through the ice that I check in the afternoons. A kind of freshwater cod, very tasty but so slimy (the locals call them "lawyers") that they're unpleasant to clean.
  13. O

    Strange artifact

    A friend of mine found this in a river in New Hampshire. We can't figure out what it is. All five holes meet, and the inside is more or less hollow. My gut feeling is that it can't be ancient, but it was a long way from civilization. My only idea is that it may have been some kind of oil lamp...
  14. O

    Long, cold walk home.

    But at least I was walking. Leaving early in the morning with some friends to see what it'll take to recover it, will post more when I get back.
  15. O

    "The Man Who Eats Badgers"

    Anyone know this fellow? I'd like to meet him. There's more info and a couple videos if you Google his name. I've eaten road-kill deer, turkey and squirrel. I'm inspired to broaden my horizons. From an article in Slate magazine: "When it comes to road-kill-eating individuals, however, my...
  16. O

    Scouting for tracks from the air

    Borrowed a friend's bushplane and spent most of the day scouting for tracks in the fresh snow. Have a couple potential new deer hunting places picked out now to take a closer look at on snowshoes. Flew formation on a bald eagle for a bit, but couldn't manage a pic. Wouldn't mind having my own...
  17. O

    What to do with a mink pelt?

    A neighbor told me a weasel was killing his chickens every night, so I set a trap. Turned out to be a mink. Don't know what to do with it, but it has a nice winter pelt and it seems like a pity to let it go to waste.
  18. O

    Any of you Brits raise Giant African Snails?

    I've been seeing them in the West Indies, where they were accidentally introduced a few years ago, and have multiplied at a remarkable rate. I ate some of them in East Africa many years ago. They were delicious. Think escargot STEAKS. When I mention that, though, I get looks of disgust. They...
  19. O

    Three days in the Ozarks

    A friend who owns quite a lot of land in Missouri, a couple miles from Daniel Boone's last home, lets me hunt there. Small streams and rolling hills with predominantly cedar, oak and hickory trees. Just spent three days without seeing another person. Spent most of it on a ridge that would funnel...
  20. O

    A hidden tent village

    Knowing I'd have about a four-hour wait while my truck was being serviced, I took along my dog and a .22 pistol, planning to spend the time squirrel hunting in the woods behind the dealership. Didn't get any squirrels (only saw one, and it was too far away - for me to pot them with a pistol...