Finally, my four legged best friend finally got to explore the water both in my canoe and play fetch with the wife. An amazing day was had by this Hiking Forward family. We hit one of my favorite spots at Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Park on Saturday to paddle and have lunch.
Boston was unsure of the canoe at first as was my youngest Gabby who didn't care for how Boston was tipping the canoe. All this, even though the canoe was only half way in the water and half way out. Me and my girls still paddled the canoe around Prairie Lake for a bit on a beautifully mild later July day. Little did we all know that mom was back on the shore with Boston playing fetch in the lake.
Upon our return we were amazed to see Boston swimming about the lake, and chasing a stick he had dug out of the muck near the edge of the lake. I have never seen him so happy. Jump in the lake, swim to the stick, come back on dry land, shake and get everyone wet, sit and repeat. Over and over he jumped in the lake after his stick.
My dream has always been to have an outdoorsy water dog who loved the water and being out on it as much as I did. The real test came when I wanted to get Boston in the canoe and to paddle around with me... keeping him in the canoe would be the test. I coarsened him in by taking his new stick. He hopped on in the boat. I hide the stick in the seat and paddled away. For a while he wondered where his stick was then soon became comfortable with being in the boat. Never did he sit still always pacing from side to side and looking about. However, I am thrilled that the two of us got the chance even for a short while to have a quiet moment out on the water. With a little more practice and patience, I see us spending lazy afternoons fishing together and enjoying the lake in our future.
The other highlight of the afternoon was when Grace asked if she could take my kayak out and give it a try. Mind you, this is a fourteen foot kayak and a normal adult sized paddle. Okay sure, I said and off she went. She listened intently and paddled well and hard when needed to make turns. She is now curious what other colors kayaks come in. She has already requested lime green. Looks like I am going to be building a second tier on the trailer I just built to fit some more boats.
At the end of the day we all finally realized that this Hiking Forward family has discovered a new family activity with Boston and one that will expend a ton of his extra energy. Going camping with him in the future will require lakefront property I think.
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Recently I got the opportunity to try out a pair of Rhino Laces. Before I discuss the laces themselves, there are few things that impress me when it comes to outdoor gear. One thing is quality. Obviously, we are going to put our gear to the maximums of maximums out there, so its not quality then what the point right?
Second, it's hard to find much of anything truly thought of, manufactured and processed to the marketplace solely in the United States anymore. For me, this is a huge bonus, knowing that somewhere there is a guy like me who had an idea, maybe because he bought some gear that wasn't up to his standards and decided to make his own. That idea for me is something that will make me keep coming back to their product and company.
And finally, a guarantee. If you already start out with a quality product as a company and you are invested because it was your idea and you are committed to your product and company this shouldn't be an issue for the company. But as the buyer, the guy or gal pulling money out of their pocket, when it comes to gear for me, this is always on my mind. What happens if it breaks, wears or doesn't live up my maximums?
Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce you to Rhino Laces. Made in America. CHECK! Made of quality material that will not wear, burn, break be cut or sawed. CHECK! And, has a guarantee! CHECK! If you break them they will replace them for free. Yes. Free. NO questions asked.
I tried a pair out recently to compare them to the laces that came with a new pair of boots. The reflectivity on the Rhino Laces were much brighter then those that came standard on my boots. Plus, after doing a little inquiring to my boot company, they don't stand behind their laces.
Rhino Laces were developed by the Wildland Firefighters who as you can image need their gear to be in top shape and the last thing they need while fighting a forest fire is for a lace to burn up or to bust on them. While we are not fighting fires, we could be miles and miles from home and the last thing we want is for our laces to bust as well.
Rhino Laces makes a wide variety of lengths for standard boots sizes as well as a host of colors (Black, Coyote Tan, Reflective Red and Reflective Black) to help match your boots.
If you would like to get a pair for yourself to try out for your next long journey and add a little extra insurance policy to your boots I encourage you to enter the Rhino Laces Giveaway below.
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About a month ago Hiking Forward raffled off this Potable Aqua prize pack. Tamara Deane from North Carolina was the selected as the lucky recipient of the prize pack.
Just recently, Tamara and her husband were able to get away into Tennessee and use the Potable Aqua products that she won.
Here is her review.
Tim Deane (my husband) and I have been hiking for several years as individuals and only recently together. We both have used different methods of getting clean drinking water. He has shared with me that the drops and tablets were effective but had left a unpleasant color and taste. So I have steered clear of using them. Recently I was gifted with an awesome opportunity to use the Potable Aqua system that I won from Hiking Forward during a kayak/camping weekend trip on Douglas Lake TN. Not only was it easy to use and easy to pack, it also didn't have the unpleasant taste I was expecting. I am excited to have this product in my pack as a reliable way of purifying my drinking water and am pleased with how easy it was to use. Thank you for my gift and I'll be spreading the word.
Congrats again to Tamara Deane on winning the Potable Aqua Prize Pack!
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In approximately seventy days I along with thirteen other fortunate souls will travel to the remote reaches of northwestern Idaho to see and experience things as John Muir intended them to be. As part of the Hell Hike and Raft crew I can't wait to be a part of the untamed wilderness.
As a follower and student of John Muir's works, I have spent the past weeks wondering about him, those that influenced him and those he influenced and the work that they collectively accomplished to ensure that our country's best idea not only came to fruition but also endured for generations to come. We all are better because of Mr. Muir's works and ideas.
Today, I wonder about the literary genius of both Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson. I think about the power of their words and how they so strongly influenced Muir.
As enthusiasts of the outdoors, I strongly believe that we all have a little Muir in us. Also, I know that just as Mather, Roosevelt and others like Ansel Adams were influenced to protect the wilderness we too have a role to play to keep the wild, wild and nature protected for ourselves and for our children. This I know is a personal conviction of mine. I hope that is others as well so that we can all continue to enjoy the beauty around us. Muir created the Sierra Club to protect what he loved. I too, give of my time and work with my local Sierra Club group to help do the same locally. I urge all outdoor enthusiasts to do the same and play a role as Muir did to not only enjoy what we have but help protect it. Do it in your own way.
I know without John Muir, some of my experiences may have not been possible.
For that I say... Thank You John Muir.
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