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Song Of The Paddle: An Illustrated Guide To Wilderness Camping [Paperback]

Bill Mason
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

April 18 2002
The return of a classic paddling guide.

More than a how-to camping and paddling guide, Song of the Paddle is a philosophical guide to outdoor living. Written by the acclaimed paddler and outdoorsman, Bill Mason, the book leads readers on a journey of exploration and discovery.

Mason writes from an intensely subjective viewpoint and the advice is practical and sound. He emphasizes the difference in perception between camping (rough) and outdoor living (comfort). Each page is packed with hard-won tips and tricks for enjoying the great outdoors. No detail is ignored -- from keeping campfire smoke out of your eyes to ensuring children are safely occupied around the campsite.

Chapters include:
- Traveling solo, in groups and with family
- Campsites, tents and camping gear
- Camp fires, fireplaces and stoves
- Cooking in the wild
- Outdoor clothing options
- Packing equipment and food
- Survival tips and first aid
- Canoes for wilderness tripping
- Paddling and portaging skills

Mason's personal accounts and details of memorable expeditions are certain to kindle the reader's sense of adventure. Abundantly illustrated by photographs and sketches, novice campers and seasoned paddlers alike will get more out of their outdoor experience thanks to Song of the Paddle.

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Description

About the Author

Bill Mason was one of Canada's leading canoeists and conservationists, an artist, and an award-winning film-maker. He is author of the classic canoeing book "Path of the Paddle." --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Bill Mason helps you to hear "the song" July 17 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
A few years ago, I stumbled upon this book. At the time, I had some river canoeing experience, and they left me wanting to do more, but I was hesitant because I honestly didn't feel I knew enough about canoeing, I didn't know anyone else who knew any more than I did, and I didn't have the spare dollars to hire someone who did. This book solved my problem. Mason covers just about everything related to caoeing, and he does it with humor and wit, and an easy to read style. There are times when he gets ahead of himself, and you have to stop and reread, and do some thinking. But this is for the better anyway as good canoeing requires some use of the noggin'. You'll find preparation lists, hints and strategies all through the book for everything from day trips to full blown wilderness excursions lasting weeks. There is an excellent section on canoe safety and the basic paddling strokes (which was the section that got me back on the water with the confidence to learn and improve). Mason covers portaging, use of a compass and maps for navigation, rescue techniques, includes a few recipies (that work quite well) and even gets into the trickier maneuvers a skilled paddler can attempt. Besides all that, Mason includes plenty of stories (including a couple of hair-raising ones) that will make you laugh, think, and-most likely-help you hear the song too! My copy is getting all worn out from constantly rereading, and you'll likely do the same to yours.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The best book on "Living in the Outdoors" March 6 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Bill Mason was one of the best writers on canoeing period. He uses humor throughout the book and gives canoeists and campers of all kinds practical tips on the outdoors, canoeing and life in general. I highly recommend this book as an addition to anyone's library. Especially those of us who enjoy canoeing and understanding others' thoughts on the outdoors.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of my all-time favourite books! July 11 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Bill's love for Canada and his passion for camping in the wild come through gloriously in this loving look at outdoor tripping and living. It's chock full of tips and stories and quite honestly is my favourite camping and canoeing book by far.
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars Quintessential canoeing reference Jan. 6 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This old book, along with Path of the Paddle, are out of print and hard to find.

I haven't investigated the field extensively, but these are magical.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  10 reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bill Mason helps you to hear "the song" July 17 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
A few years ago, I stumbled upon this book. At the time, I had some river canoeing experience, and they left me wanting to do more, but I was hesitant because I honestly didn't feel I knew enough about canoeing, I didn't know anyone else who knew any more than I did, and I didn't have the spare dollars to hire someone who did. This book solved my problem. Mason covers just about everything related to caoeing, and he does it with humor and wit, and an easy to read style. There are times when he gets ahead of himself, and you have to stop and reread, and do some thinking. But this is for the better anyway as good canoeing requires some use of the noggin'. You'll find preparation lists, hints and strategies all through the book for everything from day trips to full blown wilderness excursions lasting weeks. There is an excellent section on canoe safety and the basic paddling strokes (which was the section that got me back on the water with the confidence to learn and improve). Mason covers portaging, use of a compass and maps for navigation, rescue techniques, includes a few recipies (that work quite well) and even gets into the trickier maneuvers a skilled paddler can attempt. Besides all that, Mason includes plenty of stories (including a couple of hair-raising ones) that will make you laugh, think, and-most likely-help you hear the song too! My copy is getting all worn out from constantly rereading, and you'll likely do the same to yours.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my all-time favourite books! July 11 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Bill's love for Canada and his passion for camping in the wild come through gloriously in this loving look at outdoor tripping and living. It's chock full of tips and stories and quite honestly is my favourite camping and canoeing book by far.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book on "Living in the Outdoors" March 6 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Bill Mason was one of the best writers on canoeing period. He uses humor throughout the book and gives canoeists and campers of all kinds practical tips on the outdoors, canoeing and life in general. I highly recommend this book as an addition to anyone's library. Especially those of us who enjoy canoeing and understanding others' thoughts on the outdoors.
5.0 out of 5 stars A perfect book for reaquainting one's self with the outdoors May 6 2007
By Tom Pinto - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
If you feel that you have to spend every dollar that you earn on the latest outdoor gear in order to enjoy the outdoors, this book may not be for you. Bill Mason communicates to the reader that anyone can go out and enjoy the beauty of the natural world and that some of the more modern day, expensive outdoor equipment may be left at home when safety isn't a factor. Throughout the book I feel as if Bill Mason is actually talking to me while I read his words of personal accounts, lessons learned, and funny anecdotes. I find that this very personal style of writing to be a perfect match with the subject matter. It is a book that that I will read again and again while recalling my own outdoor adventures.
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book for the "real" outdoor person Aug. 9 2007
By Buddy Greenboat - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Beware! This book may get your heart going faster if you love the outdoors! Some of the items he mentions are difficult or impossible to get now, but he does show how to manufacture most of it. Somehow his writing bypasses the brain and goes straight to the heart. And it is not preaching to the converted! He covers just about everything needed with a subtle sense of humor. He simplifies the "how-to" and puts the love back into camping! This might be the only book you need about camping. A must have!!
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