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Bedivere
Why Do Witches Burn?



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Bedivere
Why Do Witches Burn?
PostWed Oct 22, 2008 7:24 pm 
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Anyone know anything about this guy?  Ever read this book?

http://www.aurorabookshop.com/?page=shop/flypage&product_id=804&CLSN_1985=12247275861985fcee5214b61da5fe16

I stumbled across his Ice Creek cabin quite by accident about 5 or 6 years ago while fishing up the Entiat.  Inside there was a newspaper article from the Wenatchee World about him.  Not a whole lot of info readily available online.

Just curious if anyone else has heard of him, read the book, or knows any interesting information about him.

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Bedivere
Why Do Witches Burn?



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Bedivere
Why Do Witches Burn?
PostFri Oct 24, 2008 6:36 pm 
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Guess not...

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BirdDog
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PostFri Oct 24, 2008 7:08 pm 
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Never heard of him, but the book sounds interesting.

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sooperfly
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PostFri Oct 24, 2008 7:10 pm 
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CW, I have read the book. Found it quite interesting. If I remember correctly it has pictures of him with grizz or grizzes he either trapped or shot or somebody else did.. can't really remember.  I think it's worth reading.

I have friends that knew him.  They used to go up to his camp at Domke and fish years ago.

Here's a little page with some info on him.

And a litle cut'n paste from the Wenworld archive  - Hu Blonk, reporter.

There is one story that stands out, Blonk said, not so much as a favorite, but as the one he worked hardest to get. For years he'd been trying to interview Gordon Stuart, a trapper who operated a wilderness resort at Domke Lake above Lake Chelan. The only way to get there was to fly or hike in.

"I was after him for 10 years," Blonk said. He offered to write the story, let Stuart read it and then hold it for publication until after Stuart died.

"I said, `Gordon, I realize you like your privacy, but you're a legend. There aren't any people in America left like you. Your story ought to be preserved.' "

Stuart sent him off, saying come back in 10 years.

Blonk was back up at Domke Lake on another story years later when someone who worked for Stuart came to say the old trapper wanted to see him. Stuart was ready to talk, and Blonk scrambled to keep up.

At the end of the interview Blonk asked Stuart why he finally consented.

"You came back when I told you to," was the reply.

As promised, Blonk sent the story to Stuart before it was printed and was surprised the trapper liked it and gave his OK.

Blonk's "Mountain Man" article ran in the World on Sunday, Jan. 27, 1985. No one knew until Monday that Stuart had died in his sleep two days before.
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Bedivere
Why Do Witches Burn?



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Bedivere
Why Do Witches Burn?
PostSat Oct 25, 2008 3:32 pm 
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Thanks sooperfly, that's the kind of thing I was looking for.

I'll have to go look through the Wen. World's archives and see if I can find that story.  It might be the one that was in the cabin.

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MLHSN
What goes here?????



Joined: 09 Sep 2007
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MLHSN
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PostSun Oct 26, 2008 3:07 pm 
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I'll let you guys know how it is.  It sounded interesting after reading your post so I picked it up from the library.
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MLHSN
What goes here?????



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MLHSN
What goes here?????
PostSun Oct 26, 2008 8:43 pm 
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Very, very interesting read!!!

I'm having a hard time putting it down.

In regards to your question Willie, from "Mountain Air":

"A.L. Cool had built a trapping cabin on the Entiat River during his more active days, when he had spent his winters trapping for marten, coyote, and mink.  The cabin was located a quarter of a mile south of the junction of the Entiat River and Ice Creek, on the east bank of the Entiat River.  When Cool sold his trapline rights to Gordon in 1926, he included this cabin and all the "utensils" still in it.  In 1927, Gordon applied for and received a Special Use Permit from the Forest Service which would allow him the use of that cabin.  The permit granted him the rights for "occupying and maintaining a cabin already existing as headquarters while trapping fur-bearing animals in the vicinity." Except for one year-- in 1929, when the Entiat was closed to trapping and he trapped the suiattle River--that cabin site on the Entiat was to be Gordon's "home away from home" during the winter months for years to come."

Thanks for bringing this book up Chainsaw.  I'm only on page 40 but it is packed full of interesting info. on the Domke Lake area, holden mine, stehekin, and other areas up Lake Chelan.
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509
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PostTue Nov 11, 2008 9:08 am 
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MLHSN wrote:
Very, very interesting read!!!

I'm having a hard time putting it down.

In regards to your question Willie, from "Mountain Air":

"A.L. Cool had built a trapping cabin on the Entiat River during his more active days, when he had spent his winters trapping for marten, coyote, and mink.  The cabin was located a quarter of a mile south of the junction of the Entiat River and Ice Creek, on the east bank of the Entiat River.  When Cool sold his trapline rights to Gordon in 1926, he included this cabin and all the "utensils" still in it.  In 1927, Gordon applied for and received a Special Use Permit from the Forest Service which would allow him the use of that cabin.  The permit granted him the rights for "occupying and maintaining a cabin already existing as headquarters while trapping fur-bearing animals in the vicinity." Except for one year-- in 1929, when the Entiat was closed to trapping and he trapped the suiattle River--that cabin site on the Entiat was to be Gordon's "home away from home" during the winter months for years to come."

Thanks for bringing this book up Chainsaw.  I'm only on page 40 but it is packed full of interesting info. on the Domke Lake area, holden mine, stehekin, and other areas up Lake Chelan.


If you guys want more information on Gordon Stuart you should talk to the current owner of Domke Lake Resort.  Gordon left it to him in his will.  Both of them have a lot in common.

Domke Lake is worth the short hike in spring or summer.  The resort is a resort only in name.  Really cool spot, and a part of the Cascades that no longer exists except in a very few spots.
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greg
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PostTue Nov 11, 2008 10:51 am 
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I've read the book, a great story, and have met the current operator of the resort, such as it is. His name is Sid. The resort is actually a leased concession on the Wenatchee National Forest.

It took some time for Sid to warm up to us, and we him, when we camped at the lake a few years back. Our initial meeting didn't go well when we flew into the lake via Chelan Air -- that's a thrill in itself. Later my son, then about 10 or 11, nearly stepped on a large rattlesnake at our campsite, the biggest I've ever seen. Walking by Sid's cabin for a hike later that day we mentioned it to him, and he went into the cabin and came back out with the skin of an absolute monster rattler he had killed nearby a few years before, way bigger than the one we'd jsut seen.

He seems every bit as cantankerous as his predecessor, Mr. Stuart, but OK once you get to know him a little.
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MLHSN
What goes here?????



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MLHSN
What goes here?????
PostTue Nov 11, 2008 3:52 pm 
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The book is starting to get a little repetitive as it goes on.  There are numerous stories about Stuart getting drunk with people for about 100 pg's.  I don't personally find that part as interesting, but the sections on the historical side of things makes it worth reading.
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Magellan
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Magellan
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PostTue Nov 11, 2008 11:35 pm 
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Has anybody found the WW article?
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Timber Cruiser
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PostFri Nov 14, 2008 9:58 pm 
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MLHSN wrote:
The book is starting to get a little repetitive as it goes on.  There are numerous stories about Stuart getting drunk with people for about 100 pg's.  I don't personally find that part as interesting, but the sections on the historical side of things makes it worth reading.

I read the book a number of years ago after spending some time up at Domke.  I had heard that Sid did not want any part of the book, and after reading it, I could see why.  With a rich history of decades of trapping and living in the area, it's too bad that the biographer dwelled so much on some of Gordon's socializing, and not how he survived up there.  He was a tough individual living life on his terms.  It's unfortunate the author had so little knowledge of that life, and showed so little respect for him.

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MLHSN
What goes here?????



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MLHSN
What goes here?????
PostSat Nov 15, 2008 12:43 am 
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Don't get me wrong.  I'm not bashing his personal decisions.  What he did for fun and socializing is none of my business.  I'm sure rehatching the "good ol' days" is great for those who personally know the individual.

I, however, extremely enjoyed the earlier chapters of the book based on the entry of the first individuals into the upper lake chelan area and the history behind him trapping the Entiat area.
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Leafguy
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PostWed Dec 10, 2008 11:55 pm 
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Brings back good memories. Sid and the Honda 70, Ernie and the old plane that didn't always get enough speed on the first pass and would have to taxi all the way to the upper end to make it the 2nd time (he finally got a new one), and Gordon, his dogs (camp raiding hounds), and his cabins. It was so great to see him get a nice cabin after all the years in the little one. I could go on forever. But I type slower that sh##! The End hockeygrin.gif

Just gonna C & P an old reply of mine in a previous thread titled "Chelan Mtns."

Timber, you're right about Sid and his graciousness. The guy loves that place. I remember when he was the "young Forest Service employee". (He requested the author of "Mountain Air" not use his name in the book). He rode up the trail almost every day in the summer on one of those old Honda 70s with the small fat tires to maintain the campgrounds, check on Gordon, and make sure Gordon's dogs hadn't looted and pillaged the campers' food (too much). The outdoors needs more people like Sid.
I'm sure if those cabins across the lake didn't bring in so much money from Chelan Airways, they would "disappear".
As far as the book portraying Gordon as "rough around the edges", well that's mainly because he was! Heck he lived out there for a million years by himself. I might be too.
He was a great guy once you got to know him. I remember asking him what to fish with the first time we went there. He went back into the old cabin and brought out a half dozen green carey flies for us. I had never fished with flies and told him so. He asked me "what do you think the fish eat?" I've been a flyfisherman ever since. I could go on forever about my memories up there.
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Jim Welch
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PostSat May 16, 2009 10:43 am 
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Our Family has been up to Domke numerous times in the last 10 years, it seems  to be one of the few places my brother in law seems to have consistent luck fishing. Its never been "fish jumping into the boat" type of fishing, but we usually catch enough for a decent dinner.

We get there via Lady of the Lake and walk up, we usually rent a couple of boats and stay at one of the campgrounds around the lake.

Sid is a very gracious guy, and has a deep respect for the uniqueness of the Lake.

I read the book about Gordon Stuart, I am glad someone took the time to document his life up there.

The lake is definitely worth making an annual trek up to, especially early in the season (April-early June) as most of the Cascades lakes still have a lot of snow.

We are going up this MemDay, which will be the first time since the big fire up there, we are kinda anxious to see what the place looks like now.
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