All posts by jhines

Survival: Easy Way to Start a Fire

This may be one of the easiest way to start a fire. The guy from Stephenson Prepper uses cotton ball, petrolium jelly and a flint with a scraper. You don’t need to have the same bracelet as with flint/scraper as shown in the video.

Video Transcription:

[Speaker]: Today Im’ma be showing you a little video how petrolium jelly and a cotton ball can make a good fire. It actually lasts about four minutes actually burning. And this is how you can store ’em, You go ahead and pre-mix ’em, keep ’em in a ziplock bag, makes ’em water-tight.

I’m gonna start with my bracelet today. You can get these bracelets on Amazon. Just look up ‘Bracelet with Flint’, and you should find the link.
This is what it looks like. You gotta take it, put it down through the hole to get it. Much easier to start it. You can use a little washer that’s connected on the end to actually start it.

You can see I’ve done a couple things with it, where it’s kinda shiny on the side, and the paint’s still on this side. You do have to get the paint off of it by striking it multiple times. Hopefully I’ve got enough paint off it on this side to make it work.
[starts fire]
And there you go. That’s how you can get a fire started. Let me take this down.

Demonstrated by StephensonPrepper Youtube

Orienteering: Finding True North

There are many ways to find true north if you get disoriented while hiking. Though it may sound easy to walk in a straight line, it’s actually simple to get off-course. There are many ways to getting back on track, that is back to true north. Here are some simple methods, have a look below:

needleFirst method is to get a needle and cork, or something to make the needle float. Rub the needle on your clothes to magnetize it and then stick the needle through the cork or rest it on top of a leaf that floats, and place it in a puddle or cup of water. The needle will turn and point to true north.


Another way to find direction without a compass requires the use of sticks. There are two ways to do this, one way during the day and one way at night. The first way, which you do during the day, is to put a stick in the ground so that it is sticking vertically up, and mark where the shadow is with a pebble or a rock. Wait 10-15 minutes, then mark where the shadow has moved. The original shadow indicates west and the direction the shadow moves is east.


The second way to get yourself directionally aligned can only be done at night. Get two large sticks, one bigger than the other. Stick the shorter one in the ground, and then just beyond it, jam the taller stick into the ground. Then bend over behind the smaller stick, and in your mind, make a line that goes from the top of the two sticks to a star in the sky. Watch the star for several minutes and the stars will change location (they aren’t moving, the Earth is, of course). If the star moves up that means you are facing east; down is west; if it moves right, then you’re facing south and finally, if it moves left, that is north.

What other ways have you used to get back on track?

Source: WikiHow

Zombie Moose has Alaskan Puzzled

The undead appearance of this animal has many scratching their heads.

A viral photo of a moose has many speculating as to what is ailing the animal in Alaska.

The photos were apparently taken in Anchorage last summer and show an animal with an almost zombie-like appearance. The moose is missing large patches of hair, exposing black and bright red patches of skin.

“That moose had been attacked by a bear by a neighbor’s house,” Patricia Grenier told the Alaska Dispatch News. “(The moose) was gone and everybody thought it had died, but then it was back and it was in my neighbor’s yard.”

But not everyone is satisfied with that explanation. The Internet was quick to note similarities in the animal’s appearance to Sparky, a bison who was struck by lightning in Iowa and went viral earlier this year.


The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is well aware of the moose. In fact, the Alaska Dispatch News reports state veterinarian Kimberlee Beckmen asked biologists to put the moose down so a necropsy could be done. Beckman’s concern was the animal was suffering from winter ticks, which haven’t been found in Alaska before.

Cancer, birth defects, and parasitic infection are all additional possibilities, according to Alaska Fish and Game.

But the mystery of the zombie moose may remain just that, a mystery. “September or October of 2014 was probably the last time we saw it,” Grenier told the Alaska Dispatch News.

Similarly, biologists looking for the moose couldn’t locate it either. As far as anyone knows, it hasn’t been seen since then. So unless it is found again, the internet will be left speculating everything from forest fires to aliens as the cause. What do you think caused this moose’s strange ailment?

submit to reddit

by Travis Smola

Source: AK Dept Fish & Games

J&J Smart Charters

J&J Smart Charters is a family-run business. John and Joan Smart have lived in Alaska since 1989 and started J&J Smart Charters in 1992 with Captain John as the main captain. 2012 was their 20th anniversary of chartering on Cook Inlet in Ninilchik, Alaska. They purchased Deep Creek View Campground in 1995 and have been providing unique camping experiences and enjoyment in Ninilchik for many years. The entire crew at J&J Smart Charters are great individuals who love what they do and it shows! We look forward to another incredible year!

Alaskan Survival Prepper Works Below The Surface

In our first segment on Rodney Dial a survival prepper we covered Rodney unique doomsday urban survival tank. In this segment Rodney briefly explains his method of hiding his survival cache underwater, obviously locations are marked only he knows where its at.

Video Transcription

Rodney: “I’ve a plan to hide caches my preps in a place no-one would ever think to look.”
Rodney:”I’m building underwater caches for my preps, so when the *bleep* hits [the] fan, no-one will ever find ’em.”
Rodney:”We wanna keep caches under the water because it’s ultra-secure location Best place to put something you don’t want others to find.”
Man:”You ready?”
Rodney:”Yeah!” [welding]
Rodney: “Alright, here we go, moment of truth, huh?.”
Man: “Yup. So far so good” “Seems to be holding”
Rodney: “Yeah look at that! Good job!”
Woman: “So we’re at fifteen so far.”
Woman:”We’re at fifteen.”
Rodney: “That’s perfect, here we go!”
Rodney: “ok this is perfect, no-one’s going to be able to come out and get a hundred-fifty pound tube a minimum of thirteen-fourteen feet underwater.”
Rodney: “So basically, if we find that and walk straight out, we’re gonna be able to find this tube.”
Rodney: “Ok help me lift it up.”
Megan: “How much does this thing weigh?”
Rodney: “It’s about a hundred and fifty pounds right now. Ok, ok there we go. Alright! Ok here we go Megan!”
Rodney:”That’s what I’m talkin’ ’bout!”

Rodney: “I’m not a quitter, this family doesn’t give up. So if that makes this weird, well then we’re weird. But you know what? We’re gonna be the people that ther people are gonna come to when the *bleep* hits the fan, or when things get really bad.”

Transcribed by Sam Morstan

Why I am Not a Doomsday Prepper

My first real exposure to the world of prepping came in 2008, when I became a new father and we moved to San Francisco, an earthquake zone. A lot of people in the Bay Area keep stockpiles of food and water on-hand for when The Big One hits, and since my wife was super nervous about earthquakes and I’m a former Boy Scout, we picked up a few cases of MREs and a water barrel.

Later, I added double-barreled coach gun for defensive purposes, making it my first time to live with a gun in the house since I left home for college at 17. But after that I called it a day. As far as I was concerned, we were ready for an earthquake, and that was that.

I didn’t take things much further for a few years. I didn’t even own anything that qualifies as a “survival knife” until 2012. I had dipped my toe in the waters of prepping, and I started to read more about it online. Prepping has two peculiar aspects that I found completely compelling: 1) it involves shopping for and acquiring Really Cool Gear, and 2) it has a community that longs for a world where we’re no longer compelled to work jobs we hate so that we can buy Really Cool Gear that we don’t need. In other words, prepping is hyper-consumerist in practice and anti-consumerist in outlook (sort of in the way that war is frequently justified by the desire for peace). Both aspects appealed to me, especially the gear part.

But this isn’t a treatise on prepping. Rather, it’s about why I don’t prep for The End Of The World As We Know It, TSHTF, the apocalypse, the collapse, or whatever else you want to call it. Yes, I do keep an excessive amount of long term storage food on hand–my urban-dwelling family of five is prepared for roughly three months of loss of access to basic services, but I’m not even remotely interested in doing any more. Of course, by most people’s standards, having three months of dehydrated food on hand is just completely insane, but by prepper standards I’ve basically given up and will just die in the second wave rather than the first.

While I think that prepping for a few months loss of access to basic services is a little nutty but theoretically justifiable, I am convinced that prepping for a Hollywood-style apocalypse is totally pointless. Here’s my case against Doomsday Prepping.

Population, Population, Population
If an apocalypse of biblical proportions were to take place, and by “biblical” I mean literally out the book of Revelation, where one third of the globe’s population is wiped out, then the US would be home to as many people as it was in the early 1970’s. Now, the ’70’s were bad–so bad, in fact, that they gave this country its first full-blown survivalist wave, the predecessor to the one that we’re currently in. But that decade was by no means the Thunderdome.

Wiping out two thirds of the population would bring us back to the opening decades of the 1900’s, the era of the early seasons of Downton Abbey and Boardwalk Empire. Neither of these two shows look anything like The Walking Dead to me.

Killing off a whopping 90% of the population would take us back to 1860, the year that Abraham Lincoln was elected as the 16th president of the United States. I also saw the movie Lincoln, and it, too, did not look like The Walking Dead.

Losing 99% of our population would take us back to the post-Revolutionary War period of the 1780’s. At that point, Harvard University had already been operating for about 150 years. Again, Rick Grimes’ group of survivors would be out of place here.

My point is this: with only 1% of our present population, humanity had arts and letters, transatlantic trade, a thriving stock market (in London, at least, and a few years later in the US)–in short, we had civilization. It was not a Hobbesian “state of nature.”

Sure, the immediate aftermath of a sudden event that wiped out 99% of the population would look pretty much like a textbook “state of nature,” but before long we’d be back to doing our thing. And I’m pretty sure the stock market wouldn’t take more than a few days off, at most. Which brings me to my next point.

The Stock Exchange
People in the west have been trading securities in some form or fashion since the 1600’s. The NYSE got its formal start in 1790, and trading has continued more or less uninterrupted since then. In other words, the stock market kept going through the Civil War. Think about that. The country was split in half. We were shooting at each other. Armies marched on towns and burned them, right here on US soil. But corporations continued to operate, they continued to be worth money, and Wall Streeters continued to trade their shares.

The Civil War was about as bad as it gets, but yet again, it was not TWD. Students still went to school and university. Stores were still open. The trains still ran. And in general, the machinery of modern life and civilization chugged on. The coverage was spotty in places, but it was still there, and things sprung back pretty quickly once the shooting stopped.

Farming is Hard, Hunting is Impossible
Let’s say that we truly do end up in a TWD-style total apocalypse. If this happens, my only hope is that me and mine die very quickly. I buy groceries for my family periodically (my wife does most of the shopping), so I see first-hand how many calories it takes to feed all of us. It ain’t pretty, and the kids are all still little (the oldest is 6). Once they start eating like teenagers, then things will really get crazy.

I grew up hunting, so I know how hard it is to take game. There’s a reason why Native American tribes would routinely have winters where they lost half or more of their people to starvation. It’s insanely hard to get calories by killing animals, even for people who are taught to hunt and trap from the time they can walk.

Farming is a much better option, but it’s also really hard, takes experience and specialized knowledge, and is notoriously unreliable. Crops can and do fail, and people who do subsistence farming can and do go hungry.

Sure, there are survivalists who live off-grid and maintain fully functioning farms with livestock, produce, and the whole nine yards. These people will likely do okay (although even many of those guys are kidding themselves because they’re still dependent on gasoline), but that doesn’t matter to me because I am not one of them, nor am I ever going to be.

If things don’t snap back after our freeze dried food runs out, then we’re goners. But I’m not going to uproot my entire life to prepare for the (essentially zero probability) scenario that Hollywood is right about what the End of the World looks like.

Real Prepping is No Fun
So, there you have it: I am not interested in prepping for doomsday because I think it’s totally pointless. Doomsday is just not coming, at least not in the Hollywood sense.

And if a Hollywood doomsday were to arrive–an asteroid strike or some other cosmic catastrophe-then we will all just die. But we will also die if we catch a deadly disease, get hit by a drunk driver, get cancer, or any one of a million other things that are vastly more likely to befall us than an asteroid strike. Which is why for me, “prepping” looks like this: I wear my seatbelt, I don’t smoke, I eat my vegetables, I try to get some exercise, I have a stand-up desk, and other lame and un-fun things.

Like the doomsday prepper crowd, I still dream of a world where we’re not defined by where we work or what we buy, and where the Internet doesn’t suck up 110% of our time and attention with pointless trivialities. But if that world comes about, it’s going to happen because we all got fed up enough with the status quo to make major changes. No diabolus ex machina is going to smash Weber’s iron cage and magically transport us back to a simpler, less hectic time where we all sat on the porch in the evenings playing guitar and having real, face-to-face relationships with our neighbors. No, we’re going to have to do that stuff all by ourselves.

Story by Alex Aylar

Warm Up With A Hearty Stew

Ptarmigan make a great stew. When out in the field, dehydrated veggies and potato bark can be used to make an easy, lightweight, and quick dish.

Dehydrated vegetables (carrot, celery, etc.)
Dehydrated potatoes (store-bought, vacuum-sealed, or make
your own by making mashed potatoes and then dehydrate
them on a nonstick sheet in a dehydrator)
Olive oil
Salt, pepper, any other seasonings
Ptarmigan, cut into thighs, wings, and breasts

Season ptarmigan with seasoning. Reconstitute the dehydrated ingredients in hot water. Mix, then set aside. On cook stove and in pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Brown ptarmigan in oil. Add dehydrated ingredients to ptarmigan and olive oil; stir and simmer until tender. The vegetables infuse the meat with flavor. That’s it! –KM

Prepping for the Alaska Big One



Rodney Dial lives in Ketchikan. The former U.S. Army Ranger appeared on National Geographic Channel’s Doomsday Preppers last season and has spent most of the profits from his tattoo parlor to protect his wife, Lisa, and daughter, Megan, from a potentially massive earthquake and tsunami (most of Southeast Alaska sits on the Ring of Fire). Dial, an experienced diver, has a tankless, solarpowered scuba system and has hidden many of his emergency supplies underwater, in part to prevent possible looting.

Rodney surveys the ocean to find his cache, which has been watertight-sealed and dropped to the floor of the sea.

Rodney surveys the ocean to find his cache, which has been watertight-sealed and dropped to the floor of the sea.

He also has a customized but street-legal tank he calls the “WarMachine.” We caught up with Dial and got a detailed look at his operation:

Chris Cocoles Was there an event in your life that prompted you to decide to do this?

Rodney Dial I am a life long Alaskan and remember being told at a young age of how my family was involved in the (Anchorage) Good Friday Earthquake in 1964. My grandmother was working in the downtown JC Penney Building that collapsed. It was a memorable moment for my family that stressed the importance of being self-sufficient in an emergency situation. Growing up,my family learned how to harvest local resources, prepare for disasters and become familiar with the Alaskan environment.

CC Would you call prepping a passion or obsession?

RD Some would probably see our level of prepping an obsession, but for us it is just good family planning.We are concerned that too many Americans and even some Alaskans are becoming too“soft.”(They’re) relying on someone to save them in an emergency, expecting water to always flow out of the tap or electricity to always be on. Many people have never experienced any real hardships in life and, for some reason, believe they never will. We find that method of thinking dangerous and potentially a life endangering gamble. In essence we see prepping as the duty of every good American/Alaskan.

CC Has your Army Ranger career and diving background been a big aid in your prepping ability?

RD My Ranger training and subsequent Jungle Expert Certification pushed my boundaries as a young man and made me realize that with proper planning and the right mindset, I could survive in any environment. Tobe certified as a U.S.Army Jungle Expert I received training in the jungles of Panama and had to survive for three weeks with the supplies I carried on my back. My 24 years of diving experience have given me a unique ability to obtain significant resources in an area most people are unable to access. This allows a constant ability to provide food and other resources for my family.

CC You spent a lot of time in Central American jungles. Can you share some of that experience?

RD In 1985 I joined the U.S Army and became an Army Ranger. I did several deployments in Central America, including Honduras and Panama. As a Ranger, we were expected to jump in (parachute) into remote locations with only the supplies on our back,be able to complete missions, survive and return. In Honduras and Panama the focus was preparation for a guerilla style war in a jungle environment.

CC Does it take a creative mind to figure out the best ways to protect your family from a major catastrophe?

RD To some degree a creative mind is important to identify risks that a family may face in an emergency and unique ways to prepare. Of more importance however, is knowledge; the knowledge of how to prepare and provide the basics to support life. For example, the woods and ocean around Ketchikan are filled with plants and animals that can be harvested to provide food. Without that knowledge a person could starve in an emergency or eat something poisonous.

CC Your “WarMachine” is insane. Do you take pride in that vehicle like an owner of a classic car would?

RD War Machine is like a member of our family – we take care of it and know that someday it may take care of us. We look at it this way: in any protracted emergency, no matter how well a person has prepared, there will ultimately be a need to obtain some critical item or resupply; perhaps it’s something as simple as antibiotics. In that moment, you can expect that many other individuals will also have resupply needs, some far more desperate than you. People in a life-or-death survival situation can become dangerous and unpredictable. War Machine will help assure that when we have the need to resupply we will not be an easy target for those who would contemplate violence towards us as a means of their own survival. War Machine is a constant work in progress. In the near future we will be repainting the vehicle in an urban camouflage pattern, adding communication devices and other protective upgrades.

CC Do you and your family travel much or do you stay mostly around Ketchikan, just in case?

RD We do not travel much and use nearly all available discretionary funds to improve our self-sufficiency.

CC Iwould guess a nAlaska earthquake similar to the 1964 Anchorage quake your family lived through, would be more worried about an ensuing tsunami than the actual quake given what those waves have done in other parts of the world?

RD We agree.Our current home is located over 200 feet above sea level and the home foundation is anchored to bedrock. Since Ketchikanis a coastal community, the concern is that a tsunami could damage our ports and ability to receive supplies from the outside world. For the show we proved a “proof of concept” that we could store and recover supplies cached underwater. We have refined that process and now store supplies in bays and protected waterways largely protected from the areas a tsunami would likely affect. We use GPS coordinates to mark the supply cashes in case a tsunami were to obliterate terrain features used to identify drop locations. We also assure that our supplies are deep enough to be protected from the surge of a tsunami.

CC Inwatching the show, is your daughter, Megan, who seemed a little unimpressed with your planning, coming around to what you are trying to accomplish?

RD Megan, like most children, has lived a comfortable life and it is difficult to convince her of the need to prepare. She has however, been exposed to far more survival information than the average child her age. We feel confident that she has the knowledge necessary to identify local resources she could obtain in an emergency situation. As she grows older we hope to involve her more in the prepping process.

CC Talk about the four P’s you have targeted in terms of prepping:plan,prepare,position and provide. What are the challenges each of those variables throw at you when trying to prep for something catastrophic?

RD The greatest challenge for most people who are new to prepping is knowledge and money. Knowledge is the most important and only takes effort. We were able to obtain significant knowledge on the natural food sources by just asking local native elders. Our current efforts harvesting and processing devils club are a prime example. Knowledge is free in most cases and just takes effort to seek it out. Knowledge will allow you to plan and prepare. “Position and providing” requires money inmost cases and can present difficulties for some in reaching an acceptable level of security in a short amount of time. When money is tight, I recommend that people take small,but constant steps to improve their survival abilities, such as saving one can of food per week or one other action item as funds allow.

CC What was your experience like on Doomsday Preppers?

RD Our experience on Doomsday Preppers was challenging, but very rewarding. In a way it was a full-scale drill for our family, putting to use the skills we have learned and, at the same time, identifying areas we needed to improve. After the filming we reevaluated our family disaster plan and identified several areas for improvement. We have worked on improving our family skills and supplies ever since.

CC Do you hope the show has opened people’s eyes about the idea that you should be prepared for whatever curve balls are thrown your way?

RD One of the great things about Doomsday Preppers is that it is forcing people to think about thewhat if’s and realizing that some level of family preparedness is a good thing. Not all of the potential disasters prepared
for on the show will apply to all people; however, something positive can be learned from every episode.

CC Is it important for anyone, even if they don’t go the measures you’ve taken to be prepared, to just have some kind of plan in place, even if it’s a simple plan?

RD We really feel that it is the duty of every American to have at least a minimum capacity to survive some unknown(incident), for at least 72 hours. A person’s failure to plan will likely endanger others who may be tasked with risking their lives to save them.

CC You’ve mentioned Alaskans are always preppers of some degree. Is that a case of you have to be hearty and resourceful to make it in your state? And you can’t afford to not be prepared for the unexpected?

RD The Alaskan mindset seems more independent than our fellow Americans in the Lower 48. The high cost of living has also helped spur Alaskans to become more self-sufficient, from something as simple as knowing how to hunt/fish or even harvest wood to heat their home. Most of my friends and neighbors have enough supplies to survive for several weeks and the ability to defend their homes if needed.

CC You seem like a level-headed guy. Do your friends and neighbors think you’re a little eccentric?

RD Probably, although we have always felt that most Alaskans are preppers by Lower 48 standards. Most Alaskans I know have enough food and water to survive for at least a month or two and have some knowledge of the local environment. War Machine probably is seen as a little intense by some; however, you know you live in a great state when your community doesn’t have a problem with you owning and driving a tank down Main Street. Only in Alaska!

Story by Chris Cocoles – ASJ Photos from National Geographic

CrossFit For the Outdoors


From inside an old gym bag an electronic quack of a duck is pulled. It’s Jason Gentry’s ringtone. The waterfowl season is over, but it’s always on his mind. Gentry hears it and since he’s done with his 1,000-meter row, 50 bar over burpees and 50 shoulder to overheads, he checks to see if it’s his son. It’s not, so he returns to recovering from the latest workout of the day at Ketchikan CrossFit.

Gentry isn’t a guy with two lives – hunting and working out. He’s got three at least. He’s a husband, father of three (ages 13, 11 and 10), CrossFit junkie and waterfowl hunting fanatic. But he’s found a way to splice it all together.

Gentry’s teenage years were spent in Barrow, Alaska, but he didn’t grow up a hunter or fisherman. He moved south (sort of; everything is south of Barrow) to Fairbanks for college and his first job. After Fairbanks was Anchorage, then Wasilla, Fairbanks again and now Ketchikan
– his favorite so far – where everything has come together.

He started powerlifting 10 years ago in a garage gym with a friend when he lived in Wasilla but “needed to do something conditioning-wise.” He ended up joining Ketchikan CrossFit (907-617-4940; two years ago when he continued his southern migration. CrossFit has become a way to satisfy his passion for fitness and get in better shape for the type of hunting he wants to do. Or maybe there was an element of necessity after hunting with a buddy,
Joseph Lanham.

“He had his 100-pound pack and was carrying decoys, and I’m back there struggling with a backpack and a water bottle,” Gentry says. Gentry is all about hunting now – ducks, deer, goats; he wants a shot at everything. He, like other hunters, doesn’t like limitations, especially when
“just over that ridge” becomes “just one more ridge,” and then there it is – the buck of a lifetime.

Participating in outdoor activities is inherently dangerous, but limiting activities for fear of being injured is arguably worse. Internet searches for “hunting-shape workouts” start at a baseline of zero. That is, step one is walking, meaning that between season’s end and season’s beginning, the level of fitness is pretty low.

If you’re carrying 20 extra pounds that you gained over the year, you’re not going to shed that by solely going on long walks three weeks before opening day. Establishing healthy habits are important, and for Gentry, CrossFit provides not only that, but accountability and encouragement, something that you don’t get from the poster you tore out of a magazine or found online.

Internet searches also have critics railing against CrossFit. It’s been blamed for joint deterioration and injuries, but Gentry says that all exercise poses a threat, and gyms that focus on increasing weight without supervision is where a lot of injuries occur. Classes
at Ketchikan CrossFit range from one to eight, which provides instructors Kevin Manabat and Jeff Williams the freedom to keep a close eye on each of the members.

“With CrossFit, like sports, there’s always a risk of injury,” says Manabat. “As a gym owner and a CrossFit coach, I try to minimize the risk of injury by teaching and holding a standard for
movement patterns. Being a smaller box (nickname of a CrossFit gym) isn’t necessarily a downfall; it allows me to have a lot of one-on-one coaching with each individual and truly becoming each member’s personalized coach.”

Where a traditional gym might hold a buffet of muscle isolation machines to be shared among the masses, a Cross-Fit gym is somewhere between hiring a personal trainer and just working out
with a couple friends in a home gym. “Since we’re such a tight-knit group,” says Manabat, “I get to see and know everybody’s strength and weaknesses; plus in a class setting it’s easy for me
to keep an eye on each individual and make corrections or to modify or scale as needed.”

In his more than two years of Cross-Fit, Gentry has not scaled much, nor has he sustained an injury from working out. Last spring he set a trio of state lifting records in the deadlift (485), squat (410) and bench press (250) for his age and weight. That amounts to a lot of
duck decoys.

“It’s fun watching Jason Gentry work out,” says Manabat. “He’s a big 220-plus-pound guy who moves heavy weight like nothing, then turns around and cranks out a bunch of body weight movements like he was a gymnast.” But not everyone is at the level of Gentry. This is the time of year when people are trying just to get into hunting or life shape. Gentry agreed with the idea of self-improvement, but not if it’s dictated by a calendar.

“Every day should be January 1,” he says. “The reason I don’t stop is because I know what it feels like to start back up. It hurts too bad and I don’t want to do that again.”

So it becomes more than just working out to get in shape for long hikes. It becomes concurrent, complementary lifestyles, not merely training for one season. For Gentry, it’s not just about wanting to be in shape for himself or for his hunting trips; he wants to be in shape mostly for his family. “Everyone says you have to ‘keep up with the kids,’ and (my wife and I) are all over the place, but none of that is worth anything if you’re not in the physical condition to enjoy it.”

Gentry loves giving his kids the childhood that he didn’t have when it comes to the outdoors and appreciating the cycle of things and the gift of game resources in Alaska. “I want to experience hunting, not just for me, but for my kids,” he says. “Being physically fit makes me more
successful at work and at home. I’m also an example for my kids. With our national obesity level over the top, it’s nice for my kids.”

He also likes to see how his kids are taking to the outdoors. “The first ducks I brought home,
(my kids) were saying, ‘ewww,’ but now they’re feathering; they’ve got their hands bloody; they’re naming the ducks and they have a love for the outdoors.” Though his daily schedule is exhausting, and working out would probably be the easiest thing to leave out, he doesn’t.

“I refuse to sacrifice that hour of the day. I’m 40 and in the best shape of my life. I want to take my kids on these adventures and excursions. That’s even more motivation.” ASJ