Saturday, October 30, 2010

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Saskatoon snowshoe club

The Saskatoon Snowshoe Club is getting geared up for the coming winter and snowshoeing season. If you are looking for a group of people to explore the winter landscapes around Saskatoon, then head over the the SSC's website and check out all the group tours that are planned. A membership to the club is free so be sure to fill out the online membership form in order to receive updates for up coming group tours and be sure to tell all your friends.

Let it snow!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Bears asleep in the woods

The first snowflakes or 2010 fell on Saskatoon this evening. And as always the first snow fall brings thoughts of winter adventures that put me in a good mood.

At this time of year the bears are good and fat and likely looking for a den to spend the winter in. I often wonder, as I wander through the winter woods, where 'do' the bears hibernate. What does a bear den look like? There are many more bears in the woods than we are aware of and they have to go somewhere for the winter. My guess is that they are closer by than we might think.

I came across a youtube video of the Rick Mercer Report. In it, Mercer is in Algonquin Park tagging black bears. This video shows clearly what a black bear den looks like and just how docile, even a sow with clubs, really are during the winter.

The snowshoes Rick is wearing are the Ojibwa style. From what I can tell, most of the researchers are wearing the new style snowshoes.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Pulk Tarp

I just finished making a tarp for my pulk. It'll be used to wrap my gear in to keep all the odds and ends from being lost on the trail. I usually pack my gear into large duffel bags so there aren't too many odds and ends but it will be nice to have everything contained nice and neat. The tarp can also double as a ground sheet or as a wind break. It's just a piece of ripstop nylon with webbing loops on all four corners. It measures about 13 x 5.5 feet. It's a bit too long but that shouldn't be too much of an issue. To test it out I wrapped up a bunch of sleeping bags. It looks like it's going to work well.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Made a new sheath

I just finished making a new leather sheath for my Gransfors Bruks small forest axe. The one that comes with the axe is very nice and fits well but it only covers the bit. I wanted something that would cover the entire head. I take my axe on all my canoe trips so it's going to get wet and corrode. To prevent this I like to season the metal head with bore butter which is actually used to season muzzle loader barrels but works just the same on any metal surface. If I used the original sheath that came with the axe bore butter would get everywhere and make a mess of everything. By covering the whole head it keeps the butter contained and eventually the butter will build up in the sheath and season the axe every time it is placed in the sheath.

Finished sheath made of oiled leather for moisture protection

Shows the snap and stitching detail

I first drew out the pattern on the computer and printed it off, then transferred it to the leather piece.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Paddle socks

I just found a great buy. While making my usual rounds through the sporting goods section at Canadian tire I came across a rack containing Gun Socks made by Yukon Gear. The label on the package said that they were 54" long, silicone treated and will fit guns with or without scopes. For some time now I have been thinking about getting something to protect my paddles while in transport to the lake and back, and possibly while out on trips. The best part is they were under $12 each. I bought all that was on the rack.

Gun Socks as paddle socks

Package label