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Distant Fires - A Book Review

Distant Fires, Duluth to Hudson Bay, Scott Anderson

I have been on one backcountry canoe trip in my life but after reading this book I was ready to quit my job, buy a Souris River Quetico and head out for a month like a voyageur.

The book is part journal and part adventure guide. The author and his best friend decide that they want to follow the path of another pair of paddlers (Eric Sevareid, Walter Port) and spend months in the summer of 1987 doing just that. They paddle 1700 miles from Duluth, Minnesota to York Factory in Manitoba

I loved this book. I was entertained, educated and filled with a primal urge to explore unfamiliar territory. Neither Scott or his friend Steve Baker are what you would call experienced explorers, but they make up for it with zest and adaptability along the journey.

Part of what I enjoyed was how “homemade” their expedition was. They didn’t have the latest gear or a massive support team. Its just two guys making their way through some incredible places, meeting interesting people and enjoying life even in difficult circumstances. Having read a few books of this nature (will review them at some point as well) I find the stories and history of the voyageurs to be fascinating.

If you love a good adventure story and are looking for a good book to read over the winter months I highly recommend Distant Fires. I picked it up off Amazon

Be warned though you may find yourself spending an excessive amount of time shopping for a canoe, searching out spots on Google earth and checking out routes on MYCCR

Cheers and happy reading


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