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magicalaurie
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Anyone here familiar with this story? I caught a bit of it on PBS today and found it interesting. Far as I recall it's the first I've heard of him. Seems to me his story would be more widely known.

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MagicSanta
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Thank you, he did a beautiful job on that cabin.
magicalaurie
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I was thinking John Denver would likely have been aware of him, as John was very keen on Alaska. I just googled it quickly and one of the search results says John used to visit Dick Proenneke when he made trips to Alaska.

http://alaskasgoldenspoon.com/page2.cfm?recordid=45

Also:

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Woland
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Mr. Proenneke is well known to folks who are interested in this sort of thing. He made a documentary and published a couple of books; the first one was heavily edited, against his wishes. He did something that seems almost inconceivable today, yet in the America of the 18th and early 19th centuries, many if not most men would have been capable of something like it.

The workmanship of everything he did is indeed outstanding.

Woland
magicalaurie
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Thankyou both for posting. I just found an interesting link that mentions the second book:
http://www.troop1127.com/Richard_Proenneke.html
Woland
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The short excerpt from the film (to which you linked, above) is very inspiring.


Woland
Payne
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On 2010-12-06 14:40, Woland wrote:
The short excerpt from the film (to which you linked, above) is very inspiring.

Woland


Yes, it inspires me to keep making those mortgage payments so I don't have to go live in a shack in the middle of nowhere Smile

I'd rather do my hunter gatherer thing at the local supermarket or a nice restaurant than licking lichen off of a rock.

I'm glad the guy got to live the last 30 plus years of his life following his dream though.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
critter
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See, I love the wilderness, but I'm too social-minded to check out permanently.
"Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage."
-Theodore Roosevelt

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Payne
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On 2010-12-06 16:06, critter wrote:
See, I love the wilderness, but I'm too social-minded to check out permanently.


For me the wilderness is best enjoyed being viewed through a window of a five star hotel.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
magicalaurie
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On 2010-12-06 16:06, critter wrote:
See, I love the wilderness, but I'm too social-minded to check out permanently.


An interesting point about Proenneke: he didn't really permanently check out. He had many visitors, including John Denver, as I mentioned above. He also visited occasionally with his relatives, I think. I've seen mentioned, I can't recall if it was in one of the above links, that he went to visit his sister in another state (I think it was California), and found the transition rather "jarring".

He had a radio in his cabin and was quite aware of what was going on in the "outside world", so to speak. He even received much fanmail, apparently, and spent a good portion of his time trying to read through it and reply. From the accounts I've seen so far, those who met him found him to be quite happy to visit and entertain them, that he liked people, really.
jazzy snazzy
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A toothache or appendicitis could be a problem but otherwise it's a great life.
He lived at Twin Lakes nearly 30 years, amazing. Laurie, you should see the whole film when you have a chance.
"The secret of life is to look good from a distance."
-Charles Schulz
critter
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Yeah, but my friends are too lazy to come out into the woods to visit as often as I'd like Smile
That's why I like Spokane. I'm out in the hills and mountains every day. I run around big National Parks and Arboretums, and then I drop by my buddy's house for tea.
I get the best of both worlds.

For those who do like the wilderness though, I'm working on a project with my friend Floyd, a retired Air Force Survival Instructor, and my other friend Mike, a martial arts instructor, about surviving in the wilderness without equipment.
We are starting with a series of YouTube episodes on basic skills, such as making cordage from found materials, creating a cutting edge with found materials and minimal flintknapping skills, and then progressing to improvised scenarios.
The entire premise is what can someone do if they are lost on a hike or something and they have nothing but the clothes on their back. Not even a knife.
I will make an announcement on here when it is closer to completion. Our YouTube channel is called barebonessurvival.
http://www.youtube.com/user/barebonessurvival?feature=mhum
"Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage."
-Theodore Roosevelt

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Quote:
On 2010-12-06 16:25, Payne wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-12-06 16:06, critter wrote:
See, I love the wilderness, but I'm too social-minded to check out permanently.


For me the wilderness is best enjoyed being viewed through a window of a five star hotel.


LOL! That's a great quote Smile
My ex-cat was named "Muffin". "Vomit" would be a better name for her. AKA "The Evil Ball of Fur".
Woland
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Let's bear in mind that Mr. Proenneke, unless I am very much mistaken, never maintained that everybody should do what he did, and live like he lived. He took care of himself, and lived the way he wanted to. And he never insisted that anybody else bear any of the costs -or risks- for him.

And, by the way, when you see the care and workmanship that went into the construction of his cabin -- which still stands as a "tourist attraction" -- I would hardly call it a "shack."

Peace out.

Woland
critter
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It is good for some folk. I like the idea, just have things I still want to accomplish within society. Otherwise I probably would have become a monk straight out of high school.
It would be very peaceful.
I've read Walden (very dry, required reading for the Stone Age survival class at the Community College) and I like that Ol' Henry managed to scrounge most of his building supplies.
For most people, I would say that the 'retreat' idea is probably more realistic.
I've known my share of people who don't even like camping, let alone anything extended. People who genuinely hate the woods. I will never understand that.
I spend more than a minute in a crowded mall and I could start shooting. I need to get away fairly regularly.
I live just outside of town right now. Enough to see deer and turkey pretty regularly, but close enough to go to a restaurant or a friend's house when I want.
"Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage."
-Theodore Roosevelt

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Payne
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On 2010-12-07 11:23, critter wrote:

I've known my share of people who don't even like camping, let alone anything extended. People who genuinely hate the woods. I will never understand that.



Different strokes for different folks. I haven't camped in years and years and have no desire ever to do so again. As a kid I was in scouts and I grew up on the outer most edge of suburbia. Houses on one side, orchards and farm land on the other. Thus I got most of the exposure to nature that I ever wanted out of my system before I graduated from High School. I've always been a "City Boy" and if I had to live in a little cabin in the middle of nowhere I'd most likely go crazy within a week. The isolation and lack of anything to do besides chop fire wood for the upcoming winter months would drive me insane.

Besides all you outdoor types are completely dependent on us city dwellers for your survival. Who makes the tools, clothing and camping supplies you need to make your Walden experience possible? We city guys do. I doubt even Mr.Proenneke could have survivied very long without his tools and his air dropped supplies of food and clothing he ordered from Sears.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
critter
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[quote]On 2010-12-07 11:37, Payne wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-12-07 11:23, critter wrote:
Besides all you outdoor types are completely dependent on us city dwellers for your survival. Who makes the tools, clothing and camping supplies you need to make your Walden experience possible?


I'm going to disagree with you on this. A high quality steel knife makes things easier. A plastic sheet definitely makes water collection easier. But none of it is necessary.
I took Stone Age Survival, I can make a cutting tool out of a rock. I can build a very well insulated shelter from things I've gathered. I don't need a lighter to build a fire. Just a lot of patience. Cordage can be manufactured with two rocks and some tree bark.
It's nice to have those city supplies available, but I certainly don't need them to survive.

It's exactly that kind of opinion which inpired us on the YouTube survival project. I watched those shows on "Discovery Channel" and I thought, "How convenient that they always have just the three items they need to MacGuyver a chocolate bar fire. Now, what if I don't have those three things?" Given that I know and these TV guys aren't telling, I feel like I have a responsibility to make these skills more widely known.

As to "different strokes" regarding non-camping types, I agree, I just don't understand it. There's lots of lifestyles I don't 'get,' but I accept that others 'get' them. Not a judgement, just an opinion.
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Payne
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On 2010-12-07 12:24, critter wrote:

I'm going to disagree with you on this. A high quality steel knife makes things easier. A plastic sheet definitely makes water collection easier. But none of it is necessary.
I took Stone Age Survival, I can make a cutting tool out of a rock. I can build a very well insulated shelter from things I've gathered. I don't need a lighter to build a fire. Just a lot of patience. Cordage can be manufactured with two rocks and some tree bark.
It's nice to have those city supplies available, but I certainly don't need them to survive.

It's exactly that kind of opinion which inpired us on the YouTube survival project. I watched those shows on "Discovery Channel" and I thought, "How convenient that they always have just the three items they need to MacGuyver a chocolate bar fire. Now, what if I don't have those three things?" Given that I know and these TV guys aren't telling, I feel like I have a responsibility to make these skills more widely known.

As to "different strokes" regarding non-camping types, I agree, I just don't understand it. There's lots of lifestyles I don't 'get,' but I accept that others 'get' them. Not a judgement, just an opinion.


Sure, you can survive. But you really can't live that way for very long. All your stone age survival techniques are all well and good. But how long do you think you could live like that. It's one thing to go out into the woods for a while, existing like a caveman, when you know theres a hot shower and a comfy bed awaiting you on your return. It's an entirely different matter surviving that way when you know that there is no end in sight.
So what did you wear while doing this stone age survival stiff? Hides ad furs? Or were you in modern dress with fancy footwear? Life's a whole lot different running around in moccasins and brain tanned deerskin.
Survival techniques are all well and good to keep you alive until help arrives. But 99.9% of the population would be dead within a year if they had to actually live utilizing them. Starvation and exposure would do most of them in in the first few weeks alone.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
critter
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Quote:
On 2010-12-07 12:53, Payne wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-12-07 12:24, critter wrote:

I'm going to disagree with you on this. A high quality steel knife makes things easier. A plastic sheet definitely makes water collection easier. But none of it is necessary.
I took Stone Age Survival, I can make a cutting tool out of a rock. I can build a very well insulated shelter from things I've gathered. I don't need a lighter to build a fire. Just a lot of patience. Cordage can be manufactured with two rocks and some tree bark.
It's nice to have those city supplies available, but I certainly don't need them to survive.

It's exactly that kind of opinion which inpired us on the YouTube survival project. I watched those shows on "Discovery Channel" and I thought, "How convenient that they always have just the three items they need to MacGuyver a chocolate bar fire. Now, what if I don't have those three things?" Given that I know and these TV guys aren't telling, I feel like I have a responsibility to make these skills more widely known.

As to "different strokes" regarding non-camping types, I agree, I just don't understand it. There's lots of lifestyles I don't 'get,' but I accept that others 'get' them. Not a judgement, just an opinion.


Sure, you can survive. But you really can't live that way for very long. All your stone age survival techniques are all well and good. But how long do you think you could live like that. It's one thing to go out into the woods for a while, existing like a caveman, when you know theres a hot shower and a comfy bed awaiting you on your return. It's an entirely different matter surviving that way when you know that there is no end in sight.
So what did you wear while doing this stone age survival stiff? Hides ad furs? Or were you in modern dress with fancy footwear? Life's a whole lot different running around in moccasins and brain tanned deerskin.
Survival techniques are all well and good to keep you alive until help arrives. But 99.9% of the population would be dead within a year if they had to actually live utilizing them. Starvation and exposure would do most of them in in the first few weeks alone.


I agree that the majority couldn't do it, but I think most of those could be trained to. Clothes can be made. Deer skin is very soft and comfortable. I happen to find mocassins very comfortable. The 'barefoot' running craze is already conditioning people for a more natural foot motion.
Just because it isn't what we're used to doesn't mean it can't be done.
I was homeless for an entire Winter in 2000, I did use scrounged city materials like pallets and rugs for insulation, but I actually think that a debris shelter would have done me better if I'd had the knowledge then that I do now.
I also foraged most of my food and supplies when I lived on the old Ren Faire land at Gig Harbor a few years ago. Ate Cat Tails, made tea from evergreen needles and ants, didn't have a signal on my cell-phone. I liked it.

For a somewhat longer term shelter than a debris hut, I would build a mud hut (Hardens into something like Adobe.) You could live comfortably for as long as you had to with one of these and some firebuilding skills. There are progressively more intricate huts from there.
I mean, the American Indians somehow managed to survive for thousands of years before metal and the industrial revolution came.
Modern manufacturing isn't that old. We are just a few generations removed from the 'primitives' we used to be.

Again, I appreciate modern conveniences. Even more so having done without. I love a warm jacket and a good knife. But I just don't see them as necessary.
"Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage."
-Theodore Roosevelt

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magicalaurie
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On 2010-12-07 05:33, Woland wrote:
Let's bear in mind that Mr. Proenneke, unless I am very much mistaken, never maintained that everybody should do what he did, and live like he lived. He took care of himself, and lived the way he wanted to. And he never insisted that anybody else bear any of the costs -or risks- for him.

And, by the way, when you see the care and workmanship that went into the construction of his cabin -- which still stands as a "tourist attraction" -- I would hardly call it a "shack."

Peace out.

Woland


bravo. Smile Smile

It was his retirement.
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