Magazines

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Field & Stream

Following Our Father. Using court records and extensive interviews, I reconstructed the fatal shot that killed schoolteacher Walt Witt in the Pennsylvania deer woods of 1974. And 37 years after the fact, I brought his sons and the young game warden who investigated the crime back to the very tree where lives were shattered—and ultimately rebuilt with amazing grace. Winner of the 2015 FOLIO Gold Award.

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Following Our Father

The Descent. Recently republished in Field & Stream’s The World’s Best Fishing Stories, this is a raw, honest, Alaskan tale of big wilderness and big fish and what happens when you go a little farther than you ought.

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The Descent

Ozark Mountain Breakdown. Opening day of trout season in the Missouri Ozarks is a time of revelation, reflection, and a few dozen river miles of pure debauchery.

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Ozark Mountain Breakdown

This Man Can Hunt. It’s been a few years since this profile was published in Field & Stream, but it remains a personal favorite. I spent much of a week with a quadriplegic bowhunter named George Bolender, whose spirit—and the spirits of those who love him—helps define humanity.

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This Man Can Hunt

Fishing with the Shad King. John McPhee is one of the most venerated nonfiction writers living. He’s a shad fanatic, but spending an entire day with me on one of Pennsylvania’s famous shad waters might have cured him of that.

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Fishing With The Shad King

Field & Stream (monthly column)

In addition to long features and tons of shorter pieces, I write a monthly column for Field & Stream called “The Total Outdoorsman,” that explores the culture of sporting life in locations across North America.

On a float hunt with my son, Jack, we both learn a few lessons about the saving grace of humility.

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Float Hunt

Butchering a deer at home closes the circle of life.

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Butcher

A young man named Alex Wood proves that the purest wilds are a found in the spirit.

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Fishing Secrets

Audubon

It’s a Jungle In There. The Osa Peninsula is the wildest place left in the wilds of Costa Rica. But not for long.

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It's a Jungle in There

Woods are for Warblers. The wood pellet industry in the Southeast involves slashing river forests to fuel European power plants. My report ran as part of an award-winning cover story.

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Woods Are for Warblers

Paper Chase. To report on boreal forest conservation in Canada, I teamed up with an ornithologist for a 5-day expedition to record breeding birds on a route that ended in a remote First Nations village.

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Paper-Chase

Ready Aim Fire. It’s an accidental miracle: The longleaf pine savannas found on north Florida’s wealthy quail-hunting plantations boast some of the country’s highest numbers of threatened and endangered species.

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Quail-at-Tall-Timbers-1

To the Woods. My first piece for Audubon was an essay about trying to raise nature-loving kids in a decent-sized city. Now that they are college students and high schoolers, it’s here for purely sentimental reasons.

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To-The-Woods

Garden & Gun

The Man Who Changed Fly Fishing Forever. In 1956, Hungarian freedom fighter Ted Juracsik fled Russian forces when they came to his house in the middle of an October night. His journey to Austria, Iceland, Brooklyn, and ultimately the Florida Keys, is a star-crossed epic. Oh yeah. And along the way, he designed the most famous flyfishing reel in history.

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The Man Who Changed Fly Fishing Forever

Crazy for Quail. The party line is that the South’s era of wild bobwhite quail is over. A piece of history akin to plowing behind a mule. But on 4,000 acres of South Carolina, three men are turning back time. And rewriting the future for Dixie’s most iconic bird.

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Crazy For Quail

For the Love of Ducks. Because there’s nothing wrong with a good little hunting story.

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For the Love of Ducks

Appetite for Destruction. A true story of a Labrador retriever who ate about everything. This essay opened the Garden & Gun’s book collection of dog stories called Good Dog.

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Appetite for Destruction