Too Cold to Go Outside?

     The temperatures have warmed up but just in case it gets too cold to go outside I’ll be prepared.  Kevin Callan provided a list of paddling and wilderness movies to watch in a recent article.  If you have the time to watch any of these then let me know what you think.  One of my  favorites for a sick comedy is "Without a Paddle."  The scariest one I have seen is "The Blair Witch Project."  My kids were engaged with "My Side of the Mountain."  Everyone should see the "Deliverance" once in their life…

Inspirational movies to watch before you go:

 The Yearling (1946) Set in the wilds of Florida after the Civil War. A young boy takes in an injured fawn. It’s not as sad as Old Yeller (1957), but keep a couple of Kleenex boxes beside you just in case. 


The Long, Long Trailer (1954) – Lucille Ball and Desi Arnez play newlyweds traveling the open road with their trailer, before we called them RVs. Any RV owner will definitely relate to all the calamities but the funniest scene has to be when Lucy’s rock collection rolls around while Desi tries to drive up a steep mountain slope. 


My Side of the Mountain (1969) – A young boy leaves home in New York to live in the mountains just as his literary hero, Henry David Thoreau, did. 


Jeremiah Johnson (1972) A mountain mans’ quest for life as a hermit in the wilderness. Haven’t we all wanted to live like Robert Redford at some time?

 The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams (1974) – The story was loosely based on the life of a trapper, John Capen, who escapes to the wilderness after being wrongly accused of a murder and then befriends a grizzly bear cub. The movie spawned a television series – until the main actor, Dan Haggerty, got busted for cocaine use.

 Meatballs (1979) – Wacky hijinks of camp counselors, including comic genius Bill Murray, highlight pranks and chasing girls more than a love of the woods – but it’s still worth watching again. 



 Continental Divide (1981) – John Belushi is a hard-nosed Chicago journalist covering a story on an eagle researcher. He falls in love with her and with the mountains she calls home.

The Man from Snowy River (1982) – Filmed in the mountains of Australia . It is more about a boy becoming a man than it is about wilderness values, but the scenery is unforgettable.

Never Cry Wolf (1983) – A government biologist is sent to the far north to study the "menacing" wolf population and learns of their true benefit to nature and of the "menacing" nature of man himself.



Black Robe (1991) – Follows the life of a 17th-century Jesuit priest as he is escorted through the wilderness of Quebec .  

Without a Paddle (2004) – Three young men go on a camping trip to fulfill a childhood promise to one another. The trip that goes horribly and hilariously wrong.

The Last Trapper (2006) – Norman Winter plays himself as one of the last traditional trappers living in the interior of the Yukon . The scenery captured on film is stunning but Norman makes a far better trapper than actor.

Movies to avoid watching before you go:

Man in the Wilderness (1971) – Set in the early 1800s. Trapper and guide (Richard Harris) gets mauled by a grizzly bear and left for dead by his fur-trading buddies. Surprisingly, or maybe not, he doesn’t die and seeks revenge.

Deliverance (1972) – Based on the book by James Dickey, this classic in which rednecks rape poor Ned Beatty while he and his buddies are out on a canoe trip started Burt Reynolds’ career and almost ruined Beatty’s. Your friends will definitely hum the familiar banjo tune when they hear you’re going camping.

Grizzly (1976) – Came out a year after Jaws and was suppose to do to camping what Jaws did to swimming in the ocean. Not sure it did.

Friday the 13th (1980) – You’ll no longer dream of being a camp counselor after watching this.

Redneck Zombies (1987) – Chemical waste gets dumped out in the woods and gets mixed up with some redneck’s moonshine, making it no longer safe to wander in the local woodlot.

Alive (1993)Rugby team takes some drastic measures to survive after their plane crashes in the Andes . Most disturbing is that human butt cheeks are the first part they choose to eat due to the fat content.

The River Wild (1994) – Meryl Streep deals with armed thugs and wild rapids. The rivers were a little less crowded the year this film came out.

The Edge (1997) – Two men (Anthony Hopkins and Alec Baldwin) try to survive in the wilderness after their plane crashes and a grizzly stalks them; actually, there were three men but the first guy (unknown actor, of course) gets eaten by the grizzly shortly after the plane crashes.

The Blair Witch Project (2001) – Surprisingly terrifying. A cheap but very effective movie about a group of young campers haunted by a witch while roaming the dark woods. The tent scene will have you spooked for months after.

Gerry (2002) – Matt Damon and Casey Affleck run around lost and confused in the desert (shot in Argentina, Death Valley and Utah ‘s salt flats). Maybe it’s just me, but it was the biggest waste of two hours in my life.













Wolf Creek (2005) – Just when you thought it was safe to go backpacking in the woods again…. This is one scary movie. Three young pals head out hiking in the Australian Outback’s Wolf Creek National Park . When their car doesn’t start, they seek help from a local bushman, and that’s when the real trouble begins.