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Adirondack Outlaw 2022.0

My 2021 “Trail Cam” review, plus a map of planned 2022 Adirondack Outlaw adventures.


     As we each pack our gear and map out individual routes forward into 2022, I thought I’d take a moment to share a glimpse of several upcoming Adirondack Outlaw adventures, as well as a 2021 “Trail Cam” review.

    2021 was a year filled with challenges. Some we met head on. Others we went off trail and bushwhacked around.  

    From a father-daughter dance team debut, through epic bottle dive treasure finds, Adirondack dinosaur discoveries, outlaw camping and fishing adventures, losing cedar log friends, witnessing rising Phoenixes, epic whitetail escapades, and somehow surviving a gale in a father son duck hunt, for me personally, 2021 was another year filled with Adirondack Outlaw adventures. I wrote stories about most of them.

     One thing that happened quite unexpectedly early on in the year, was being contacted by The Adirondack Almanack’s Editor, Melissa Hart.  She had seen several of my stories on my blog and offered me an opportunity to share some of my work with their readers.  I of course accepted eagerly.

     This was just the sort of opportunity I had been hoping and praying for when I first started my Blog.  It was a golden opportunity to reach a far wider regional audience.  As with most every other new adventure I embark on, I went “all in”, mapping a whole series of new peaks and trails on my route.

     Looking back, I have no regrets about that decision. Melissa Hart proved very easy to work with, and I have truly enjoyed the engagingly free-flowing environment The Adirondack Almanack’s comments section allows with its readers. By the time 2021 was all was said and done, THIRTY SIX!!!  Of my adventure vignettes, articles, poetry and stories had appeared on their pages. Through the year, fourteen of them made The Almanack’s monthly “Top Ten” list. “What Defines Adirondack?” even came in as June’s “#1”.

     To top it all off, one of my stories made The Adirondack Almanack’s year end “Top Ten Posts of 2021”. “Adirondack Dinosaurs” was number nine on that list. It seemed only fitting that my top ranked story of the year was of a Middle Saranac Lake adventure with my Zen boat Co- pilot wife Robin.

     However, that success came with a price. I quickly discovered that I could not write enough to feed both my Blog and newfound success through the Almanack. So, I early on made a choice. Realistically, in any given year, only about a third of what I write fits the Adirondack Almanack’s “Blue-Line” footprint. (Author’s Note: For those who don’t know what the term “Blue Line” refers to, it’s the boundary that outlines the Adirondack Park boundary, depicted on most maps with a blue line, hence such phrases as “located within the Blue Line”.) No one asked me to, but I put everything else on the back burner. As a result, my blog suffered. Readers, followers and views dropped off dramatically from the previous year.

I was hoping that Adirondack Almanack exposure would draw more readers to my blog. I have so many really good original stories, adventure vignettes and poems posted there, over 90 at this point! I’ve worked really hard over the past two plus years building up a small but loyal following. But alas, that is not what happened. In fact, it was just the opposite. In throwing everything I had into writing articles, poems and stories that fit the Adirondack Almanack footprint, I was depriving my own readers of the full range of my writing while simultaneously slowly starving my own blog. I have realized that I have put far too much of myself into my blog to allow that to continue. So, I won’t.

     I have no regrets. My blog was never intended as a destination. It’s a vehicle. However, in order to keep it in good running order, I have to put gas in it, change the oil occasionally, and keep up routine maintenance. In other words, I have to go back to my true outlaw self and write a broader range of adventures & stories specifically designed to feed it.

     So, heading into 2022, I’m going to rebalance a bit.  I still plan to submit articles to The Adirondack Almanack. I have really enjoyed that. However, I have several pretty cool fiction stories that I think folks will like that have been just clamoring to get out. I also have a whole series of baseball/baseball card related stories I’ve long been planning for some time now to write. And, yes, someday, maybe this year, I’ll get back to finishing “Some Days I’ve Been In”, my full-length survivor’s story. A primary piece of still unfinished business. Plus, what’s sure to be an exciting array of “unknowns”.

     That said, on to “New Business.”  What planned adventures lie ahead for 2022? Lots of excitement ahead! Here’s a snapshot:

     My daughter Chelsea and Son-In-Law Matt are pregnant! Robin and I are expecting our first grandchild!  We’re very excited. Much speculation has swirled. Question of the Day: “Boy or Girl?”

     I have already informed everyone involved;

It does not matter. If it’s a boy, it’s a boy. If it’s a girl, it’s a boy. I raised three boys.  I don’t think my daughters fully realized that they actually were girls until about age eight.” 

If that sounds somehow sexist, I don’t much care. All of my grandchildren will be Adirondack Outlaws, regardless. Count on it. Learning to camp, canoe, hike, hunt and fish with the best of ‘em.

     Beyond that, my son RJ & his fiancé Carrie are planning a move a bit further south this spring, to Corning.  Robin and I both look forward to that. It’s funny. I wrote a piece earlier this fall about life’s circles. I was actually born in that area (Bath, N.Y), and spent my college years just up the road at Cornell. My best friend from college, Chuck, lives nearby, in Horseheads, where he, RJ and I hunt together. So, RJ & Carrie being in Corning presents many exciting opportunities for adventures in an area I have strong ties and connections to.

    Our daughter Abby & her dog Khalisi are also planning to strike out on their own as well. So, for the first time in our lives, Robin and I will be true “empty nesters”, not counting “Paw Patrol” duty, of course, and grandchildren.

     Just in time! Robin will retire at the end of the year. Finally, I’ll have a full time Adirondack Outlaw Zen boat co- pilot.  I’m excited for both of us. Robin sure has earned it.

     To that end, one more exciting announcement. To support our growing family well into the future, Robin & I are bringing an important new addition on board. We put a down payment on a new boat! A Lund SSV-16, with a 4 stroke 35Hp Honda engine. It’s all decked out, tilt, center console, trimmed out in black. We’re naming it “Outlaw”.  I’ve already added a tow package to my truck.  Our boat’s on order via Fogarty’s Marina in Saranac Lake. It should be ready for spring. It’s a small water vessel, but well equipped to support our family’s future adventures. Adirondack Outlaw or not, no newborn infants braving Middle Saranac Lake’s whitecap devil’s dance roughness! Not on my watch!

     So, in summary, 2022 holds a great many exciting adventures in store: our first grandchild, children’s life moves, Robin’s retirement, a new boat!  Me? I plan to keep writing stories about most all of it, seeking a better balance between The Adirondack Almanack and on my blog.

    Oh! One last New Year’s note! I’ve added two new members to my Paw Patrol:

Introducing Bonnie & Clyde

Upping the ante for the year ahead. I now patrol with pet bobcats.


Until Our Trails Cross Again:

Here’s To 2022!

Happy New Year!

ADKO 2022.0