Ontario takes a good step to preserve boreal forests

There’s a good writeup CPAWs site about how our Boreal forests are going to be given a bit more protection when industrial development decisions get made. With any new policy or announcement that involves big business and the environment, I’m always a bit skeptical, but this seems like a great start.

Woodland CaribouContinued conservation of Boreal forests in Ontario means that the species that call it their native habitat have a better chance at surviving, and the hunting and fishing that goes on in those areas can be tailored to control the population to make sure the local species are not over-harvested, or grow in population too large for the land to support. More land means more flexibility for threatened species such as the Woodland Caribou, Lake Sturgeon, and Polar Bear – species that are also considered at risk in other areas of Canada.

Got myself an iPhone

So, lots of new things going on… I’ve got a new job and a new phone and probably a lot less time this year to go camping, but I’ll get a chance to check out the iPhone in the woods.

It has a gps, but I’m not sure how good it will be, since it relies heavily on being connected to the net. I don’t know if there’s any way yet to add local topographic maps for use offline.

One thing it will allow me to do is compose updates from remote areas. I know that I could just transcribe written notes, but let’s face it – if I were going to do that, I would have done it already.

One thing I’m looking forward to is trying out some solar cell chargers, since I like the idea of sustainable power. I don’t like throwing away batteries, but I also don’t trust rechargables enough to not bring alkaline spares.

A good solar system that would cover charging headlamp batteries, walkie-talkies, cell phones and cameras would be ideal.

Oh, and this is my first post using the iPhone!

I hate blog spam

Here’s a wonderful little comment I got on a past article:

“I found your blog via Google while searching for camping and your post regarding camping store Marathon having end-of-lease sale |  A Word in the Woods by Michael Zimmermann looks very interesting for me. I go camping every weekend during the summer months and I have found your site extremely valuable in some camping tips. Thanks!”

Now what bugs me is that they could have promoted their site quite nicely by actually posting something useful, and (well, let’s face it, not from my traffic) would have legitimately interested readers as potential customers. Instead, they manage to fill the internet with useless noise that makes everything harder to find, do, and learn. Along with the comment was a link to a site that I will now never endorse or promote. Good going. I’m sure everybody would be comfortable with the ethical promotional tactics they use, and I’m sure they conduct all aspects of their business with the same approach.

I’m going to continually mark these people as spam, and my apologies if you get a legitimate comment flagged – just don’t make it an obvious script-generated bunch of text (love the title in the above quote?), and you should be fine.

Please note that SPAM, the lunch meat, is quite a different story, and this is as good a place as any to applaud their great sense of humour when it comes to the unfortunate direction their trademark has taken with the internet. I’m sure many a family has much fondness for this wonderful loaf of meat in a tin, and the role it has played in many a car-camping trip.