Friday, June 24, 2011

The old PORT and the new PORT

As you probably figured out by now I have been gone for a while.  Last night I re-appeared with the sad news that we lost an icon in the survival community.  It was simply a matter of timing as to why I posted last night for the first time since about March 2nd.  Well the short story is that I had a few hardships to get through and when I had them sorted out I got orders off the mountain.  Yes, I got orders off the mountain.  So in the past 2 months I have been scrambling to get all of my affairs in order and get the hell out of dodge.  I secured a residence (far far away), loaded the gear an said goodbye to the mountain homestead.  I hit the road and spent many days driving and camping with the family, visiting some old friends along the way and generally trying to make the best of a bad situation.  When I got to the new "PORT" I got all the amenities hooked up and started to make a new life here.  Just yesterday I finally got the Internet working and that is when I found out about Ron, See? It was all about timing.  Now I am, for the most part situated here and I am currently looking around to find the right place to start shooting videos again.  You see, living in the mountains it was a complicated affair to get those videos out on the net and it seems that whenever I did I would get cut off for days because I had exceeded my usage terms.  Yes, just one low quality video would get my Internet turned off for days.  I no longer have that problem so if I can muster up the time and find some good locations I should be able get back on track with this blog, the Survivology 101 experiment and my you tube channel.  I hope that I can find the time and motivation to get it done.  In the mean time bear with me, I am adjusting to a new environment and tying up some pretty heavy loose ends. 

I will however continue to contribute articles and other musings to Survival Quarterly, I have also purchased the domain and I am working on building a decent page to move this blog too, eventually perhaps Ill put up a small store with a few items that I live by and perhaps even a small forum dedicated to survival topics.  There are allot of good things in the works but for now I still have a day job as a US Marine so my time is not mine to command.  Keep in mind also that I would rather be out in nature than pecking away on the computer so I often gaff off these responsibilities and just go commune with nature.  It is truly the only thing that keeps me sane. 

I will most likely not be spending much time on the forums that I belong to although I pop in and lurk occasionally. The forums that I visit are, the Hoodlums, Pathfinder, Bushcraft USA, Dirttime, Survival Podcast and a few others but I am not, nor have I ever been a major contributor to them.  If you have need or want to contact me the best way is to send me an email directly and Ill reply to it.  You can hit me up on face book but I don't spend much time there either.   Ill probably be adding a few more banners to the site, something that I have been neglecting for a while, so click on those links and visit those sites.  Keep in mind that I get nothing for the sites that I list, they are friends and people that I do business with personally.

Lastly the new PORT that I mentioned above is Gulfport Mississippi.  So the adjustment from Bridgeport CA to Gulfport MS is a big one.  I have gone from cold, dry and high altitude to hot, wet sea level.   If you are in that area drop me an email.  I need to find out all the good placed to get some dirt time and paddle time.  I am always willing to hit the tree line for a weekend, or link up and go fishing, hunting, or paddling. 

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Goodbye my friend!

Today I received word that my dear friend Ron Hood has crossed the rainbow bridge to the other side.  He is survived by his beautiful wife Karen and their son Jessie.  Karen and Jess I love you both and I grieve with you.  Ron was my mentor and very dear to me and my family.

When I first met Ron it obvious that we were kindred souls, we chatted around the crowd for a while then went back to his camper and discussed some finer points of survival and survival instruction.  Karen served us a beer and we began building slings to chuck rocks into the woods.  It was starting to seem like this guy was not the pompous ass that I expected him to be.  To the contrary, he was just a regular dude that just happened to carry the passion for the woods and for the art of survival that I have never seen in anyone.  I had it, but I just thought that I was weird.  After that meeting we became friends and spoke occasionally about this and that.  In time we became great friends although we spoke often we didn't get together too much.  It seemed that the Marine Corps always had some last minute shit that kept me from going to the gatherings and meets.  We have spent some time out on the mountain together away from the crowds at the big survival meets and that is where our bond was cemented.  We have shared a few meals from venison at my table, greasy burgers in a Hollywood restaurant, to the last bits of rabbit and coffee on the mountain.

Ron had the ability to guide you in the right direction, so you made the decisions that worked,  unlike just giving you the answer he gave you ownership of the solution.  That is a rare talent in an instructor and he had it down to a science.  I knew that if I called him for advise on life or survival issues, I could always trust his advise.  His process was the same logical process that I use to make decisions, when I was so emotionally invested in an issue that logic could not be relied upon, that is when I called him.  I always knew that his advise would follow the same pattern that I would normally follow if I didn't have the distraction.  I can say this about no other man in the world.  He has lived a full life of adventure, love, hardship and loss, and he was always willing to share those trials with me to help get me through my own tough times.  Ron never hid his faults, he displayed them like badges of honor to prove that he learned the hard way.  He was a man like any other but he had a charisma like none other.  That charisma is what made him a leader in the survival community and a driving force behind more than you will ever know.

I was in receipt of orders and recently moved to Mississippi so we have not talked in a while.  He was busy with his business and I with mine.  I guess that I thought we will catch up when our shit slows down.  In that I have lost the final opportunity to speak with a most trusted friend.  For this, Ron I am sorry, I would have liked been able to chat with you one last time about the state of the world and other petty shit that we have no control over.  I would have loved to spend one more night under the stars eating burned goat and drinking coffee from a rusty soup can.  I would give anything to see you walk back into camp again holding your own turd in your hand and say everybody check this out!  They were good times brother but I guess no matter what we could have always used one more.

Recon the route well brother, we will be soon to follow and I am sure that you will again walk us down the right path.

I love you brother,