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Review: Woody's Dutch Oven -- light, compact
November 21, 2014 - Dutch ovens are huge, heavy, cumbersome cooking tools that people love and have in their families for generations. How do they fit in with canoeing and backpacking? ...Not very well. They weigh 15 pounds! They're round and take up a lot of space. Well, outdoor guide pal Michael Gray and a friend revived a nifty old Dutch ...  > Read Article

"Hey, I'd Eat This At Home!" -- BEST Camping (and quick at home!) Cooking
March 22, 2012 - [$18 postpaid in USA. (Equals $15 book plus about $3 postage.)] Michael Gray is an outdoor guide who specializes in sea-kayak trips. But I have a suspicion the paddling is just an excuse. What he loves to do is cook. And please people. In tricky situations. The result is great eating and entertainment both with a Wow factor...
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JP's 50th B-day & Halloween Shindig
November 01, 2011 - It started out as a small mtbike ride. (Including 2 MB1s & an MBZip!) With a bonfire, guitars, and potluck. But it grew into a feast with: smoked venison, roasted venison, squirrel stew, grouse, pickled pike, fried green tomatos, two kinds of homebrew from our yard hops, yard raspberry trifle (with double-boiler sabayon ...  > Read Article | Go to Website

Kick Off to Summer!
June 06, 2011 - How are you kicking off your summer? Some pals and I pegged the fun-meter for more than a few hours yesterday. It was a savory combo of extreme and subtle that I think you'd appreciate. The weather was perfect -- skies clear and warm but not too. So RadNord, Dave, Gary, Mark and I all made the time. First, we biked aro...  > Read Article

Ramps Season!
April 30, 2011 - I think the deal is that before morel and wild asparagus season, it's ramps and fiddleheads season. Anyway, it's ramps season here in mid-Michigan right NOW. Henry and I went canoeing the other day to train for our canoeing today. Today I found my first arrowhead. When we went out the other day, I picked some of my first ramps ...  > Read Article

"Hey, I'd Eat This at Home!" -- a New Cookbook for THE BEST Wilderness Cooking
December 07, 2010 - Michael Gray is an outdoor guide who specializes in sea-kayak trips. But I have a suspicion the paddling is just an excuse. What he loves to do is cook. And please people. In tricky situations. The result is great eating and entertainment -- both with a “Wow” factor. I’ve been acquainted with Michael and his outdoor en...  > Read Article

A Ghillie Kettle from Ben's Backwoods
December 06, 2010 - I enjoy tin-can twig-stoves, but I just got to test a high-end true-blue traditional Ghille Kettle, imported from chilly, rainy Ireland by the folks at It's like a twig-stove on overdrive. It's like a thermos with its own built-in stove! And it has a c...  > Read Article

FYI, Turkey is Done at 160F
November 25, 2010 - Old info has it as 170, up to even 190. No! USDA says 165, but hipsters know that 160 is where it's at. (Both wild and tame.) What's the worst thing for all meat? Overcooking! (In the USA, anyway.)  > Read Article

Makin' Bacon: DIY Charcuterie -- oh yeah!
October 27, 2010 - This has to be a great thing. My favorite food of all is cured meat. I'm talkin' bacon. And its kin. But ya know that homemade has to be best. First, it's fresh and you get to pick the quality of the cut of meat. Second, you can skip the deadly nitrates. I hear they're only there to give pink coloring to cook p...  > Read Article | Go to Website

Venison Sashimi! ...And the Smell of Meat
September 24, 2010 - A friend was prepping venison for the grill last night and I said working with such rich red meat has been reminding me lately of tuna sushi. And that the smell of raw meat has been getting more and more appealing, too. So he sliced off a few pieces and dosed em with a bit of S&P and olive oil and we popped em on down. Darn...  > Read Article

Tasty Vittles---roadkill!
November 17, 2008 - [BUMP from 2/08] [Update 11/08: We didn't do our group deer camp this year. So I was at home for Opening Day. The next day Martha was biking through the fresh (tracking) snow to the grocery store and spied a big 7-point dead in the ditch along the road, still warm. Ah-ha! So I jumped into gear, got the permit, and got my buc...  > Read Article

The Wonders of Roadkill
September 27, 2007 - I'm starting to think that roadkill is really the way to go. It's sad that the drivers are put at risk and their cars mangled but roadkill happens. And maybe it even works to control some species of game in a similar way that hunters do. (We have a ton of deer here in semi-burbia, where there isn't space to hunt---but if no...  > Read Article

The Perfect PBJ! ---the evolution of an ideal outdoor cuisine
May 15, 2007 - by Steve Frederick It comes. I approach perfection--it is so close I can taste it! And, lord, I have come to know the taste of imperfection well enough. The breakthrough came suddenly, as they so often do--I cannot put a finger to the moment or source. I know only that, though the puzzle has completely possessed my mind...  > Read Article

Wacky Weekend Up North
March 19, 2007 - OK, I'll explain the photo. In a bit. We went up north for the first time this year last weekend. I wanted to try to catch the last of the lower, clear-water canoeing days with snow on the ground, before it all started to melt and flood and get murky. Snowy, winter paddling is a gorgeous thing. And there are steelhead tro...  > Read Article

The 1st OYB Cause: "Don't Eat Big Sea Fish"
March 25, 2006 - OYB doesn't usually do causes. But this is a biggie. OK, the world seems to be fairly on top of the concept of conservation for land and land animals. We don't do very well with erosion and do really badly at sprawl. Land animals aren't doing so badly. 90% of the large fish have been caught from the oceans of the world in the...  > Read Article

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