Saturday, February 7, 2015

The Tent Dwellers, circa 2015

“If you are willing to get wet and stay wet — to get cold and stay cold — to be bruised, and scuffed
and bitten — to be hungry and thirsty and to have your muscles strained and sore from unusual taxation; if you will become these things, not once, but many times, for the sake of moments of pure triumphs, and that larger luxury which comes with the comfort of the camp and the conquest of the wilderness, then go! The wilderness will welcome you, and teach you, and take you to its heart. And you will find your own soul there; and the discovery will be worth while.”

I first read the tent dwellers when I was 16. Bought my copy at a yard sale. At that younger age i enjoyed the book for the story it was, without the conext experience provides.

You see The Tent Dwellers is a story of 4 men on a three week long canoeing/trout fishing trek through the wilderness of my home province of Nova Scotia in 1908. The Nova Scotia described and the Nova Scotia today differ widely as you might imagine. In 1908, the unspoiled waters of Nova Scotia teemed with trout, big and small. The woodlands untouched. The Acid Rain not yet scorching the pristine waters.

This post though is not about that exactly. You see the book is a story of respect and love for the outdoors. The toughness and dedication of those who fished it. It is about the feeling of connecting with the outdoors, a group of friends, the fsh and it is a chronicle of all of it.


So this year, the group of us who May Fly fish together decided to do our own tent dwellers trip. We don't have time for three weeks, so three days will do.  So in early May we will pack our gear, lift out canoes and travel to some remote lakes. Sleeping by the shore, eating under the stars and photographing and chronicling it all. Our own Tent Dwellers circa 2015. There is still special fishing in Nova Scotia. We have done a lot of it already, but this May we will get it all in word in pictures and save it here for posterity.

We have done these trips before. The formation of our now camp started with week long trips in tents, in rain, in snow, in the cold. Wet for a week straight. We have never done it with the idea of keeping it in detail for future reads or looks.

I am neither a writer nor a photographer and certainly not Albert Bigelow Paine, but the motivation is the same, and the results, whatever they may be and for us at least, will be special.

1 comment:

Catherine Meyers said...

I live on one of these beautiful Nova Scotia rivers. I have a deep connection to the land and the water. So much so I had to move back from NWT in the mid eighties. The pull of the land and see was strong and I had to come home. I bought my house here twenty years ago and have never regretted being surrounded by the beauty that is Nova Scotia. Your trip sounds wonderful. I tye flies. Your book reminds me of one I read a few years back about the woods of New Brunswick Westcock ( British Settlement) were my mother's family was from.