Trip Report 5 July – 29 July 2019
Noatak River approximately 476 miles
Arctic Alaska entire trip north of the Arctic Circle
Crew: Sue Plankis and Rob Kesselring
written in Kotzebue, Alaska 30 July
When people imagine far north canoe trips, they might visualize bears, ice, and barren landscapes. After 34 or so expeditions up here, when I think about paddling the far North, especially north of the Arctic Circle, I think of weather. Continue reading
Release your inner Jacques Cousteau. Rob Kesselring’s tropical Roatan Island SCUBA Certification. Click for the flyer.
November 2-9 2019 Roatan SCUBA trip with PADI Certification
For the third consecutive year, Sue Plankis and I are going SCUBA diving in reefs encircling the tropical Caribbean island of Roatan. Continue reading
The Merlyn Carter Book Project
Retired school principal and mayor, Steve Staton was quite taken by my new book, Merlyn Carter Bush Pilot. So much so that in the summer of 2019 he took his son to Nonacho Lake, Northwest Territories to visit Merlyn’s sport fishing camp and the site of Merlyn’s demise from an unprovoked and fatal charge of a bear. But it goes beyond that. Staton believes that there is so much important history of the North in this book that he would like to get the book into all of the northern high schools and libraries in Canada and Alaska. He has taken this on in a non-profit totally volunteer effort. I applaud and heartily support his efforts. Continue reading
I have been remiss in not keeping up with my blog. That’s a bit of an understatement. It’s been nine months since my last entry. I could string together a bunch of how time flies cliches but suffice to say my life has been frenetic and keeping up with the blog was not high on my priority list. Followers, please forgive.
A brief update of my trail since July and after an outstanding visit with Myles and Lisa Carter at Nonacho Lake Northwest Territories. After 3+ weeks at Nonacho, I did some book readings and drove from Yellowknife to Minneapolis with Sue Plankis while stopping at national parks, wilderness areas and museums to discover and learn.
Late August and September included a Boundary Waters canoe trip, hiking, and elk watching in Rocky Mtn National Park, a canoe and hiking trip at Shoshone Lake in Yellowstone with Dan Cooke and the … Continue reading
Beginning three weeks at Nonacho Lake 62 degrees north latitude, 190 miles from the nearest road, and at the absolute center of the Universe. Nothing beats wandering in the wilderness. Saw some musk ox yesterday and have caught many Lake Trout. Myles Carter is spearheading an effort to upgrade the camp. Nonacho lake Adventures now includes hot showers, 20 hp out-boards, Lund boats, electricity, refrigerators, modern cabins, even wifi… Quite a change from 43 years ago. And the lake is as beautiful as ever and the fishing still beyond belief. I love the hiking on the sandy esker where I built my cabin 43 years ago. It stretches for several miles and virtually untracked by humans. What can beat the joy of discovery?
My newest book, Merlyn Carter Bush Pilot is garnering some wonderful feedback. I am going to do a reading at the Hay River Library before I head … Continue reading
Thanks to all my blog followers who bought my new book and a special thanks to those who sent me comments. I feel so fortunate to have so many great friends. Now some more GOOD NEWS. My book, Merlyn Carter Bush Pilot, has come out from the publisher in both a paperback and an e-book edition. Now you can own the e-book for less than ten bucks and the paperback for just twice that. Click here to order direct from the publisher booklocker.com. I don’t have any paperbacks right now so you cannot order those from me, but you can click here for other ways to purchase any of my books and merchandise. Anyway, it’s summer and I will soon be off the grid and at Nonacho Lake, Northwest Territories. Some of the book’s readers are joining me on the lake during my … Continue reading
Two weeks after I met Merlyn Carter, he was tying my 17-foot Old Town Royalex Tripper to a float on his De Havilland Single Otter bush plane. A year later he was my best friend. Our friendship continued unabated for 30 years until he lost a battle and his life to an unprovoked and predatory assault by a bear on the shores of Nonacho Lake, Northwest Territories.
I know most of my blog readers are canoeists. At first glance, you may not be interested in an aviator. But Merlyn’s life is a story every wilderness traveler, every adventurer, every dreamer needs to read.
The hard cover, library edition of Merlyn Carter Bush Pilot is finally complete and published. Researching, writing and finding a publisher for this book was a four-year journey. I traveled the Northwest Territories, Northern Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Toronto, Washington DC and everywhere in between to do research, … Continue reading
I am dating myself, but I grew up humming John Denver’s song Calypso and huddled around the TV when one of the Jacque Cousteau SCUBA specials came on. Diving amongst coral reefs surrounded by resplendent fish of every color and shape it was a dream. I did get my SCUBA cert in 1970 but it was a long time before I ever had the opportunity to dive in tropical waters. This past winter I spent almost two months in the Caribbean. I was with Sue Plankis who had never dived. We decided to both get certified, so did a lot of research and checked out dive shops in Costa Rica, Cozumel and Roatan to find the best place to be trained.
We found it. And it is available for you.
It is an incredible maze of cabins, decks, pools, fountains, and artwork, right on the Continue reading
Back in Minnesota after almost four months of travel and adventure in Central and South America. I love long days and it was such a pleasure to be in Futaleufu, Patagonia on New Year’s Eve and watch the sun finally go down at 9:30 pm.
A big objective of my travels was to put together some commercial trip options for the winter of 2018-19 so that my blog readers, friends, and past crews can join me on some most remarkable adventures. My mind is now full of great ideas and a few warnings. I met some terrific outfitters that I will recommend in future blogs. Outfitters with whom my involvement would not help you, and you would be better to just cut me out of the equation. I did some other trips that were just not exciting enough, safe enough or reasonably priced enough for me to have anything further … Continue reading
In Chile now, but taking a moment to reflect on a great couple months in Central America. A big reason I travel in winter is to discover new paddling destinations for my canoeing crews of year’s past. Last winter I was on a mission to check out the Zambezi. Many friends were interested in joining me, after I had smoothed out the details, on a future expedition down that iconic African river. That will not happen. My reconnaissance was a death-defying experience. Although I will not stop friends from paddling the Zambezi, I won’t choose to accompany them and I will recommend they make sure all their final arrangements are in order in case they are returned home zipped up in a bag. For me, it was a harrowing 6-day trip, but one of my life’s greatest adventures. One and done, and the Zambezi is not something I want to … Continue reading