23 thoughts on “Excerpt: Woodswoman”

    1. You cannot imagine how much I’d like to answer that I am, but alas, I am not. Reading this series again (I read them anew every 10 years or so, there are 4 in the Woodswoman series) brings me happiness and sadness at the same time. I love reading about Anne LaBastille’s adventures and her woods spirit, her strength – physical and spiritual and mental. I fall very much behind in these categories. So I read, and I try to learn and I try to absorb a little part of her wild spirit and courage.


  1. I’d give you woodswoman status, Sylvia, having spent a significant portion of my life wandering in the woods. It’s as much an attitude as it is any single action, and as long as I have been reading your blog, you have shown a love of the outdoors. –Curt


    1. Thank you for your kindness Curt. In this particular Woodswoman book, the author describes having to shoot a bear when it was either her dog or the bear set to survive the confrontation. She shoots it, she skins it, takes the meat for sustenance, the pelt for a rug, the skull for a hanging in her cabin. Now, I would not be up for this challenge in any way. But your point is well taken. Maybe a woodswoman or a woodsman is an attitude as well. Maybe it lives alongside the spiritual connection to trees and nature and all of nature’s creatures. My name means, “from the forest” and I have always felt such a kinship to the forest, maybe that’s enough. But….I do read these books with a great reverence for this special woman and her Adirondack wilderness that is wholly unique and filled with admiration.


      1. Sylvan, of course. 🙂 It’s been quite a while since I skinned an animal and then ate it. I’d have to travel all the way back to my teenage years, Sylvia. A bear was causing severe problems in our neighborhood a few yeas back, however. One neighbor shot it and another neighbor skinned it. We all then participated in eating it.There was bear stew, bear steaks and bear sausage. We even had bear heart. Quite the feast.
        Being able to survive out in the woods has become a rare skill in this era. It was common to our ancestors, however. They would probably admire anyone who could make their way through all of the challenges of modern life! –Curt


      2. We used to eat all the internal organs of so many animals that my cousins would bring home from their hunt when I was little. And, we ate many little rabbit hearts, which I remember were rather tough. It sounds like you had quite the feast indeed. I bet you’re right, they would admire anyone who can make their way through our modern times, in the same way we admire their ways of the past, I’m sure.


    1. Well I was actually blaming the rabbits this year for my hostas being eaten, but the other day I saw an enormous groundhog eating them. She left them completely leafless! Even the marigolds are eaten, all the hostas, everything but the mint. Ah well, in the end, it’s ok. They have to eat and get fat for the winter hibernation.

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