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For every wise, old saying there is an exception to the rule. Take, for instance, “There are old men and bold men; but no old, bold men.” My canoe buddy Doc Childs and his brother Dan are the exceptions. They truly are old, bold men. Last fall the adventurous brothers headed up to a remote corner of the Maine woods to spend a week trying out a wood and canvas canoe that Dan had built.

They were out a few days when the weather turned cold and the snow began to fall. Later that day they were in the middle of a large lake when a strong quartering wind picked up. The guys realized that they were in jeopardy. If they were to flip or swamp, they would be in trouble. They would probably have to abandon the canoe and swim for shore. Upon reaching shore they would be stranded. That time of year no one is about and they weren’t expected back for days. They would be in a real-life survival situation.

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