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A PATAGONIAN MAN-EATER + MENTORS OF THE WILD | Outdoorsman | Frank Escalona

A PATAGONIAN MAN-EATER + MENTORS OF THE WILD | Outdoorsman | Frank Escalona

Frank Escalona is a Chilean-born avid outdoorsman - backpacker, fisherman, hunter, adventurer - whose outdoor life has stretched from Patagonia, to Washington's Cascade Range, and now Virginia's Blue Ridge. The themes of this episode are adventure, mentorship, and facing dangerous megafauna. Pre-interview I read a lesson from a 19th-century mentor to his mentee: a shikari's [an Indian hunter] story about ignoring bad omens that led to a violent run in with a tiger.  Our interview begins with Frank's "sumptuous" childhood in Valparaíso [a port city on Chile’s coast] and his emigration to Seattle [at the time a lumber town] where he met a woodsman mentor who took him on his first big game hunt, for black bear, at age 14 in the blueberry fields of the Cascade Range. While discussing human wildness & the motivation for pursuing potentially dangerous animals beyond the inherent value of their meat, Frank recounts a harrowing story about his Patagonian fisherman friends & their conflict with a man-eater. As hunter's mature, they often seek difficulty & depth, and for Frank that means learning the Zen of archery. We hear what he's learned from his recent traditional bow practice. Coming full circle, the episode ends with how working with master craftspeople from tailors to gunmakers adds to the aesthetic ritual of the hunt and connects back to Frank's childhood in the Valparaíso markets. Follow Our Numinous Nature & my naturalist illustrations on InstagramCheck out my shop of shirts, prints, and books featuring my artContact: herbaceoushuman@gmail.com 

Duration: 2 hr 2 min

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