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Tip #1: put everything into your survival kit, so you can take it out for the camera.

Tip #1: put everything into your survival kit, so you can take it out for the camera.

So, you wanna be a TV star? Luxe trailers, makeup girls and lots of free stuff, right?

Try shivering, thigh deep in an icy stream dodging snowflakes while trying to sound helpful and imparting a bit of useful information. Or, fighting a gale-force wind while trying to light a campfire on cue (and when the light is “just right”).

Just wrapped (as in “that’s a wrap”, really) a day-long shoot of basic outdoor skills videos for Cabela’s (watch for them soon at http://www.cabelas.com). And had a great time despite the atmospherical challenges. It helped to be back in the saddle with director Tad and associate producer Teena, as we’d not worked together in a long time. Once the rhythm was established, things moved right along.

To me, this is the good stuff. There are a lot of us who could use a brush-up on outdoor fundamentals, even if we won’t admit it. I learned while making these, and I hope you will learn by watching. If you have kids or know a newcomer, watch for the debut of these videos (I’ll keep you posted here).

We started the day in chilly, sunny conditions. Clouds soon obscured our light, but the miracles of modern HD video offer plenty of wiggle room inside the camera. We covered everything from cooking a trout without utensils to the pitfalls of GPS. As the day wore on, snow flurries that had been an annoying distraction grew to a whiteout as we drove away from one of my favorite trout streams.

Yep, one of the tips is on fishing. And no, I didn’t catch anything.

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