A New Adventure

The Traditional Outdoors Podcast

It’s funny how quickly things can change.

In late 2017, Imade a post about the podcast world and how I didn’t intend on participating. I enjoyed several at the time but didn’t feel it was the right medium to share my content. A podcast seemed like a major investment — and I don’t mean financially. I didn’t feel I would be able to produce quality content on a consistent basis. I didn’t have a partner. I didn’t have the equipment. I had connections but lacked the time to line up the interviews I thought I would need to make the podcast interesting. Above all else, I didn’t have a clue. I’d listened to podcasts but never participated.

Then something funny happened. I was reacquainted with my first love (the guitar) and did what any other 30-something male would do: joined a slew of online music communities on Facebook. The re-immersion led to my meeting and chatting with several like-minded musicians who also happened to be podcasters. One of these people was Clifton Worley of The Clifton Worley Show who I discovered had many of the same musical tastes and interests.

Clifton’s passion for networking led to the forming of his show, which was based on discussing guitars and music with average musicians from the various groups we were associated with. You didn’t have to be a professional to be on Clifton’s show and I fell in love with that concept. After several weeks of listening to Clifton and his guests, I reached out to Clifton and shamelessly implied it should be “my turn”.

We shared a laugh, I joined him on the show, and it was a blast. We became fast friends and I ended up joining him and our mutual friend (and digital illustrator) Joshua Fraser on a frequent basis. I realized then, as Clifton’s show became “our” show, what podcasting was about, and how much I enjoyed it.

I wanted to do a project of my own and considered doing it under the Life and Longbows brand. However, I still didn’t have a partner. Several people had approached me about it, but no one was ready to make the commitment. Plus, I still wasn’t convinced I could produce enough traditional archery content to make a solid podcast. The Push, Trad Geeks, TradQuest, the Traditional Bowhunting and Wilderness Podcast, and others were already doing an amazing job on the interview and educate circuit and I didn’t see the value of regurgitating that content. It has and is already being done. This put me in quite the quandary mentally. It bummed me out.

Then, something funny happened. My friend and hunting partner Steve (Angell) of Simply Traditional, reached out to me and wondered if I would consider revisiting the podcast idea, but he wanted to take it beyond the traditional archery/bowhunting niche.

“Let’s pull it outside the Life and Longbows and Simply Traditional brand and do something dedicated to life in the outdoors.” He said.

I balked at first. Anything beyond bowhunting and a bit of camping was outside my expertise and comfort zone. And I didn’t dare refer to myself as anything but an amateur in the aforementioned fields.

“I don’t know about any of that, man.” I laughed. “You’re going to need to find guests because I’m not at all comfortable speaking to anything beyond the world of bows and arrows.”

I had pretty much written me being a guest-host off at that point, but he assured me that wasn’t the angle he was going for and went so far as to say that my naivety to the topics would provide a “newbie” perspective to the show.

I was officially out of excuses. I knew I could make the time to talk to my friend once a week and I knew I could play the role of “happy amateur”.

So, we brainstormed, lined up some interviews, set a date to record, and made a podcast. Just like that “Traditional Outdoors” was born and I believe it will be a successful venture. It should be entertaining at the very least and we’ll be thrilled if you learn something!

All that being said, we’ll need your support to get this up and running. You can start by checking out our website, which will both house the podcast and feature links to articles collected from across the Web (including this blog). We’d also like to invite you to our Facebook group, where the bulk of our conversations will take place. The primary goal of Traditional Outdoors is to create an outdoor community filled with enthusiasts that have integrity and love and support our natural resources and the activities therein.

The first episode of the podcast should launch very soon! Stay tuned and be sure to subscribe and tell your friends. There will be multiple ways to do so.

We’ll see you at the campfire!

Slippery When Wet

Michigan has been extremely frustrating weather wise the past few years. I swear its the new Seattle, minus the redwoods. Winters are wet and sporadic. You never know what you’re going to get. It could blizzard one day and downpour the next. I never thought I’d see anything but white while rabbit hunting in January, but February hit with a vengeance just as I was getting acclimated to the warm, spring weather. Now, here we are in March and the snow is practically gone after getting a blizzard a week ago.

There are three pieces of public land near my home in West Michigan; one within minutes of my driveway. I frequent this land often though “Haunt” would actually be a better word. The smallest of the three is probably only 50 acres and I have laid claim to it. I realize it isn’t mine, but it feels like it. I’m the only one there most weekends, especially this time of year. I know it intimately now.

You can find me there most Sunday mornings as this is West Michigan and most are at mass. We enjoy mass too, but I prefer the outdoor kind. I’ve never felt closer to the Lord than when I’m in the woods. I tell my wife I’m “squirrel or rabbit hunting”, but I am actually roaming as I seldom shoot anything. I bring a few flu flus with me in case I spy something worth shooting at, otherwise I just want to be outside, regardless of the conditions. I bring my daughter Aubrey with me often, but the snow has proven too deep for her little legs as of late, so I left her with her mother last weekend.

I needed to take some photos for an article I’ve been working on and thought it would be a lot easier to do so without a toddler in tow asking for a piggy back ride or juice box.

It was a dreary day: very wet; very sloppy; very warm. I wore a set of 230g merino base layers in addition to a wool button up shirt and a pair of waterproof Under Armour pants and thought I was going to melt in the humidity. After an hour of climbing slushy ravines and sliding down the opposite side, I came damn close. I loved every minute of it, but it laid me to waste the rest of the day and reminded me how out of shape being a father has made me. I was a workout warrior in my pre-daddy life and haven’t adjusted to this state if inactivity I’ve been forced into.

There was deer sign everywhere, which warmed my heart a bit and gave me an excuse to rest. I was under the assumption that many had perished last spring from EHD and I was delighted to find I was wrong. I had yet to find a single carcass and there was fresh sign everywhere, including droppings in all of my ground blinds, which were destroyed by the constant traffic (and weather). Apparently these deer think little of me despite killing one of their sisters last Fall, which may work to my benefit.

Speaking of last season’s harvest, I returned to that spot to find it full of fresh sign once more and considered trying it this season, this time with new knowledge and fresh tactics. The discovery lit a fire under me and I’ve been anxiously looking forward to October since,but there is fun to be had in the meantime and the unpredictability of Michigan will not stop me from having it.

Don’t let the weather keep you inside – ever – even if it pours (which it did shortly after taking this photo).