Saturday, July 2, 2011

Youth Sponsership for the Pathfinder Gathering Sept 23-28th 2011

 As I have a bunch of children myself, I am always in favor of helping to educate our youth.  There is no greater reward for a child than to become comfortable in the wilderness.  It excites me every day that I take my kids fishing hunting or just woods bumming and I have to reel them in.  That is not because they are careless but because they are comfortable in that environment.  Sadly, not all children have or will ever have the opportunity to experience the wilderness to that level.

I have re posted the below post from Dave Canterbury (Pathfinder) site in order to help support his efforts.  He is doing a good thing to help educate children and his latest effort to set up a fund to sponsor less fortunate children to attend the Pathfinder Gathering, is in keeping with his character.  Please help to support his efforts if you are able.  Consider it an investment in the future and it could have a positive and lasting impact on the rest of the life of one of the lucky children chosen to attend.

Me and my son Leif fishing, yesterday!

---FROM Dave Canterbury (Pathfinder) FACEBOOK---
As you know we are working on a sponsership program to bring underprivelaged youth or those whos family cannot afford the trip to be able to attend the gathering. I had posted about this a while ago and had a great response. Here are the current thoughts.... It is not feasable for individuals to sponser individual families or children due to differing expenses in travel. What I propose is a fund set up through the Pathfinder school to take donations so that we can utilize this fund to select a group of youths 5-10 and one member of their family. This sponsership will include travel expenses and equipment for the youth to participate in all hands on training classes and events at the gathering. So what I propose is we set up a fund with donations through the Pathfinder School. After we get X amount we will begin the selection process by video or e-mail submission by the youths on why they want to come to the gathering as a sponsered youth. After each is selected thier video or letter will be posted on my fan page for all to see. Equipment and supplies for each child will be purchased through the Canteen Shop, Survival Resources, and The pathfinder School and I am sure I can speak for them saying that equipment for this will be provided at or near cost for this cause. I truley appreciate the family we have on this page and the never ending quest to pass on the tribal knowledge to our youth. Submission for sponsership will begin as soon as funds permit. For information on how to donte to this cause please call 317-544-8886. If you are interested in being considered for sponsership please be patient and we will let you know when the time comes.

By: Dave Canterbury (Pathfinder)


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

"Swamp Donkey" my Mississippi SUV!

As you know from my last post I have recently relocated to Mississippi. I now live all the way down on the Gulf Coast and that raised a little concern when I first got the word.  I figured that I had better do some quick modifications to my preparedness strategy.  Back in the Sierra my biggest threat was winter storms and the likelihood that I would be isolated for long periods with no power or supply chain.  Now, I have to shift my focus to bugging out not in.  I figured that in the event that I got the word late or any number of communication failures that I better have a small boat.  So in light of this I set my sights on a canoe because I could get alot of enjoyment out of it even  if I never needed it as an emergency vehicle.  I started checking the paper and online to find the right donor boat for this project.  It took about a week and I found a beat up 16ft canoe just begging for some loving.  It cost me $25.00 and the gas to get it home so I began the project by researching online as much as I could about fiberglass boat repair.  It was  not my intention to restore this thing to factory condition. My goal was to make it seaworthy and reliable while learning the ins and outs in the event that I had to make a repair in an emergency.  I picked up a few supplies that I didn't already have and then I set to work on it with a one week deadline.  Here is how the project progressed.

This is how I brought her home!

I set  to work on scraping off all the old paint and caulk to expose all of the problem areas then sanded the entire boat with 400 grit sandpaper.

This is what the center of the hull looked like (notice the big crack on the left side) this was on both sides of the hull and went all the way through.

I removed the gunwales and repaired the inside with three large sheets of fiberglass cloth.  This also reinforced the center of the hull where I would be kneeling to paddle so I put the epoxy on super thick.

I reinstalled the seat braces and put fiberglass/epoxy filler over the rives and covered the rest of the smaller repairs on the entire hull.

 I let all the epoxy cure for about a day and a half and sanded the entire boat again.  Once sanded, I hosed it off to remove most of the fiberglass dust and put my little labor force to work washing and degreasing the entire boat.

Once the cleaning was complete I primed the inside and painted it with an epoxy garage floor paint that I had leftover, I completed the look with the sprinkle on paint flakes so it matches my garage floor perfectly.  I like that look but it may not be right for everyone.

This is another view to show off the paint job.

That done the next step was to double prime the hull.

And lastly painting the hull with a high quality roller and epoxy paint.

I allowed the paint to dry for a little over a day and then added a double coat of car polish/wax.

Almost done, I reinstalled the gunwales and the decks.

I used a run-of-the-mill rivet gun to secure the gunnel's so It would be easier to make repairs in the future. 

The build complete me and my first mate Leif hit the lake to take her on her maiden voyage.

The lake was a little choppy but she handled like a dream.

We beached her on the opposite shore, had some lunch and cooked up a small pot of tea.

Leif kept sneaking off to explore the shore line and gather a little fire wood.

So in the end we took a $25.00 wreck of a canoe that was probably bound for the dumpster and with about 50$ in materials, some left over junk and a little ingenuity we constructed a beautiful seaworthy vessel that will provide us years of service and an alternate escape plan in the right emergency.  But the essence of the experience is this.  I now know how to repair and maintain my canoe because there is not a scratch, dent, rivet or repair that I am not completely intimate with.  It is now truly mine and that is the essence of Survivology.

I hope that you enjoyed sharing the experience with us, the canoe is now named "Swamp Donkey".  She is my pack mule and my Mississippi SUV.