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More About This Title Rumble Bear
Only the biggest, strongest male grizzly bears will wade into the red salmon river today. The icy water splashes over the chest of one of the oldest warrior grizzlies in the valley. His piercing eyes stare into the white foam dancing along the river's current. He carefully places one massive paw above the waterline, stoically waiting for his next slippery salmon to appear. The other grizzlies keep their distance as they know this old-timer has fought more battles than most. No one knows where he came from or how he collected all those scars, but his stride is long and purposeful and his huge head bobs and sways back and forth as he moves. Only the lazy circles of a golden eagle far above him give away his secret as the legends tell us that only king grizzlies travel with that royal companion. A sockeye salmon springs out from the froth and as razor sharp claws smash into its flesh, a perfectly-timed bite along its back ends the wriggling salmon's journey. The old grizzly glances up and down the river, and all the other grizzlies wait and watch as the huge brown beast saunters into the willows to feed. The other bears relax as it is now once again safe to hunt along the water's edge. One bear stands and sniffs the air wondering if he could find the courage to follow a grizzly like that into the dark. He dreams of what he could learn and see if he dared trail a grand grizzly into the wilderness. He pauses and steadies himself as he takes one last look up and down the shoreline at frightened bears nervously waiting for their salmon to appear. The young bear decides he can no longer live in fear and boldly shoulders his way into the cool moist brush. The tall willows happily lean over inviting him to take his next step into a new world.
As a young man, I had the opportunity to work alongside my father in the mining and exploration business in the wilds of the Alaskan and the Yukon territories. For eight special summers I lived and worked in small fly-camps hundreds of miles away from civilization and was fortunate to experience the wilderness in a way that most could not even begin to imagine. I would spend months on end in remote and isolated places where few - if any - had ever stepped foot before. The mountains, lakes, streams, and tundra of the north became a touchstone in my life, and to this day my thoughts are never far from the beauty and freedom of these unspoiled places. I learned how to story-tell from my father who could sit around any campfire in the world and within moments have everyone in total silence, listening and watching him tell of his adventures in the high north.