Free Range

a solo angler getting swept downstream

When solo treks go wrong

by Gord Ellis | April 23, 2024

This angler’s compelling story is a reminder how quickly things can go wrong in the outdoors, and how to be better prepared in future.

Keeping track

by Gord Ellis | August 17, 2023

For an angler and/or hunter, a journal or diary can provide a lot of important information. Read about old and new ways to keep an outdoors diary.

going custom

Going custom

by Gord Ellis | May 31, 2023

For most anglers, a factory-made rod is the best choice. But for those who want something specialized and different, there are custom rods.


The cutover

by Gord Ellis | November 26, 2018

Recently, as I tromped through a large cutover area northwest of Thunder Bay, I had a revelation…So many of my hunting memories are tied with cuts there’s likely enough stuff for a book…

hunter's sixth sense

The angler and hunter’s sixth sense

by Gord Ellis | October 9, 2018

So much of hunting and angling success is based on decisions, and being able to tap into raw instinct, a hunter’s sixth sense, can never be a bad thing…

fishing therapy

Fishing as therapy

by Gord Ellis | June 25, 2018

Fishing has always been a great source of pleasure to me. However, it’s only been as an adult that I’ve realized the power of fishing therapy.

conservation tradition

A different kind of conservation tradition

by Gord Ellis | May 24, 2018

The first conservation-oriented fundraising dinner this columnist ever took part in was over 30 years ago, in my hometown of Thunder Bay. It was one of the very first dinner auctions put on by the North Shore Steelhead Association…

Gord Ellis with a 48-inch muskie.

By the numbers: 3 personal bests I’d like to reach

by Gord Ellis | March 13, 2018

Whether it be a giant fish or impressive animal, these rare interactions lead to personal bests, or PBs. They are milestones in the outdoor experience. There are three I’d like to reach… some more achievable than others…


The sheer unpredictability of hunting

by Gord Ellis | December 19, 2017

One of the great challenges of hunting, and perhaps the thing that draws so many of us back to the pursuit, is its unpredictability. There is almost nothing you can guarantee when it comes to the pursuit of a truly wild animal…