The Sporting Life

Fly illustration

Tying Flies in Winter

Though my family loves spending time outdoors, by late February, they’ve grown tired of sledding and snowmen and yearn for swimming and sunshine. Meanwhile, I dream of fishing — and not through a hole in a frozen lake.
Appreciation for log fires

Appreciation for log fires

Growing up, we heated our home with wood. The yawning, cast iron stove always seemed hungry, and keeping it fed was a full-time job....

Summer Dog Days Yield Fall Dreams

Winston sprawls on the tile floor, panting. With eyes half closed and tongue lolling out, his expression teeters between boredom and sadness. Every few...
Ron Barch

For the Love of Bamboo Rods

In his Hastings workshop, Ron Barch, a retired school teacher, carefully shaves a 40- to 50-inch strip of Tonkin bamboo using a hand plane and steel planing form.
Dog long-jumping

Catching Air

Canine aquatics — specifically, dog long-jumping (aka dock jumping or dock diving) — is a relatively new arena for dogs to show their athletic ability in an exciting format that is pure fun to watch.

Harbingers of spring

After months of icy weather, new life abounds, and we welcome it with open arms. Morels and ramps are emerging, as well, pushing through the shell of stale snow like hatchlings.
"Trumpeters in the Mist"

Naturally Gifted

It’s early March and a stout nor’easter is howling across Suttons Bay. Although duck season has been closed for months, artist Chris Smith has waterfowl on the brain.
Aaron Peterson Bikes Michigan Trails

Leaving tracks

Winter affords no anonymity. Snow hides no secrets. Out on the ski trails, alone in the quiet of first light, my eyes read the snow like a gossip column. Tracks zigzagging along my route reveal where deer crossed and bunnies burrowed; once I even saw wing prints where an owl swooped down to snatch a mouse. 
Fall forest

Forest Delicacies and Fall Treats

Although plenty of folks devote entire weekends to hunting morels and ramps in the spring, autumn’s culinary cornucopia remains largely untapped.
Blendon Pines Gun Club

Feeling the pull

Blendon Pines Gun Club features several clay target games including five stand, wobble trap and sporting clays, with plans to open a new outdoor pistol range.




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