This was my view yesterday morning as I sipped my coffee. I was so overwhelmed by the beauty, I decided I needed to put my cup down and go be a part of it! I paddled over to the other side of the lake and marveled at the colors surrounding me. As I sat there in the quiet, I heard a bull moose grunting, looking for a fight, way off in the distance. I practiced my moose call for a bit, trying not to giggle. That always ruins it. The swans on the back lake must have heard me because they flew over, making a wide arc. Of course I had to talk to them, too. I asked them if they were flying south for the winter. I was given a single “honk” as my answer. I wasn’t sure what that meant. A little while later they were back, but this time they had three babies with them. I am convinced they brought the cygnets over to show them to me. I suspect that we will get to see some flight training over the next week or so as they all get ready for the long trip that lay ahead of them.

People often ask me why in the world I would want to live out here, off-grid and off the road system. Why would I not???


  1. Have read your book 3 times to capture the details in my memory, particularly of the rough times in recovering your belongings from the shed by the river, and the tedious experience of learning to fly in Alaska. This is a book my husband would have loved had he lived. I am reviewing the book for my Delphi book club soon and look forward to reliving the events for the club members. It is an adventure story to capture the interest of both male and female. Those early months of misery in trying to move your belongings to the cabin are poignant and frustrating. Thankfully, your sense of humor in the midst of frustration heightens the value of the narrative. The day to day activities are often poetic, or burlesque, or just satisfying. Your observation that there is healing in the telling lends a maturity to the love story that comes boldly through the hardships, the terrors, and finally the joy of being a team. Thanks for baring your soul in the telling.
    Ann Cales

  2. I thoroughly enjoyed your book. I couldn’t put it down and ended up reading it in one day. The stories were great and the writing superb. I felt like I was with you during your experiences. There were so many life lessons. I am still sorting through them.

    The ” thirteen seconds” chapter was gripping!

    I did not want the book to end. Thanks for the gift!

    1. Thank you! That chapter was the first one I wrote because all of the feelings were coming at me because we were at our 1-year anniversary of the crash.

  3. Enjoyed your book and as a retired teacher and pilot understand what you mean about Gods view. Enjoy my website which I maintain to pay it forward. Please recommend to other folks in Alaska. My wife and I have been to Denali and We know what a special place Alaska is. Merry Christmas from Long Island!

  4. I loved this book and that you followed your Alaskan off grid dream. My husband and I live in Fairbanks but are moving to our own off grid property off the Tanana river this summer. I moved from Florida to here 20 years ago to follow my own dream of wilderness living, but it took a lot longer to actually begin to fulfill the dream. My husband has lived off grid before, so I have his wisdom and experience to guide me. Your story struck a chord in me….your struggles and triumphs…all woven into a story that really captured my heart. One day, I hope also to be writing of my own journey and that people enjoy my adventures as much as I did yours. Maybe you will fly out our way one day. If I see a little red and white plane, I will send a wave your way. 😊

    1. I bet you are getting ready to go! Summer is right around the corner. Good luck to ya! And I’ll be looking for your little red plane.

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