25 May 2019

A Fatal Story from the Outdoors Left

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The late Hendrik Coetzee.

The political/cultural divide extends conspicuously into the Outdoors.

The Outdoors Right fishes and hunts. The Extreme Outdoors Right shoots big game and/or hunts par force du chien. The Outdoors Right wears safari jackets, canvas hunting coats, camo for duck and turkey hunting, and Scarlet Hunt Uniforms for fox hunting.

The Outdoors Left hikes, bicycles, kayaks, rafts, rock climbs, and skis. The Outdoors Left wears the latest artificial fabric in Life -Saver-flavor colors.

The Outdoors Right remembers shopping at the old (the real) Abercrombie & Fitch and Wm. Mills, and buying from the Herter’s catalogue. We still shop at L.L. Bean, Filson, Woolrich, and Cabela’s. We used to buy from Orvis, but now they do.

The Outdoors Left buys from Patagonia, Northern Mountain, and REI.

We lust after custom shotguns. They yearn for custom bicycles and hiking boots.

There is surprisingly little overlap between the two worlds, though –regrettably– A River Runs Through It (1992) resulted in a lot of unwelcome cross-over into fly fishing. Men used to say: “I never met a fly fisherman I didn’t like.” Not anymore. When I see some fashionista on the stream loaded down with expensive, brand-new Orvis equipment, I feel like pushing him in.

I sometimes read Outside magazine, and I commonly marvel (and bristle with indignation) over the cultural differences.

We Outdoors Right types would never dream of spending time in the territory of large predators unarmed. The readership of Outside Magazine is capable of debating the ethics of spraying Old Ephraim in the snout with pepper spray. They bicycle through Mountain Lion country. They camp, unarmed, among the grizzlies. And as you will read in the linked article from the Outside Magazine archives on the late Hendrk Coetzee, the Outdoors Left will go kayaking in cannibal-infested regions of the Congo and down rivers full of crocodiles.

Whitewater kayaker Hendrik Coetzee had decided to call it a career after a decade of first descents on the wildest rivers in Africa. The river’s most feared predator had a different ending in store.

7 Feedbacks on "A Fatal Story from the Outdoors Left"


I need to believe that there is more to this world than what we know. I need to believe there is magic out there-

Leftist thinking in a nutshell.

Bill Chunko

I must be one of those that overlap. I enjoy Shooting, Hunting, Bicycling, Backpacking, Rock and Peak climbing.

Bill Chunko

And Skiing!


Hendri yelled, ‘Oh my God!'”
His final words to acknowledge his and the crocs creator. And his search for truth and meaning were fulfilled in a watery grave.


I think what happens is that young athletes are excited by doing dangerous and challenging feats and begin to think they are above the common folk who might get killed or injured by a bear or croc and they push the envelope more and more without regard to the obvious dangers. It is a way to elevate themselves in the eyes of their peers and to feel the excitement and thrill of accomplishment. There is a strange confluence of luck and skill in their lives especially early in their endeavors that shuts out the common sense and justifiable fear of death or injury that most people have. After all didn’t they just complete a long litany of life threatening exploits? So what is one more risky and arguably stupid adventure, right?

Dick the Butcher

I am so right outdoors.

There I was alone hiking out from our week-long Adirondack deer camp way, way behind the club’s Belgian horse drawn wagon.

I was carrying my weapon: then a Ruger Mini-14 – the .30/06 is too heavy and I hadn’t bought the 30/30 lever action, yet; wearing woolen Swedish Army surplus pants, L. L. Bean Maine Hunt boots, and a Woolrich black/white checked shirt.

We call the left outdoors, “Sneaker people.”

Well, I ran into five or six on the old logging road and said, “Hello.” They looked at me like I had two heads.

When I got to the trail head, I think I learned why. Another group of right outdoors guys told me of how their tent had been cut up. Who else, besides our moral superiors would do that?

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