The spirit of the outdoors has always been a key part of the American spirit. Our nation was explored and mapped by mountaineers, fur trappers, and famous outdoorsmen like Lewis and Clark. These great explorers traversed the untamed American wilderness without the luxury of shopping at WalMart or IKEA. They lived off the land, hunting and foraging and trapping while treating illnesses with concoctions of wild herbs. Anything they needed while in the wilderness had to be made by hand, and people took pride in their creativity and craftsmanship.
That deep connection to the land remains in the modern outdoorsman, albeit in a more modern sense. We no longer need to live off the land, and any outdoor gadget we could conceive of is probably for sale on Amazon. But just because we can buy it, doesn’t mean we always should. This list of admittedly advanced DIY projects is the ultimate to-do list for the avid outdoorsman. If you’re looking to spend your summer in the spirit of the great explorers, or have someone in mind who’s been looking for their next DIY challenge, these are just the thing to roll up your sleeves over.
Custom Canoe Building
Any angler loves a fishing boat, and there’s no better boat for the back country than the venerated canoe. There are tons of different DIY guides available to walk you through the not-so-easy process of building an awesome and lightweight fishing vessel so don’t feel discouraged if you aren’t quite a professional carpenter. Pro tip: You may want to see if it floats with some weight in it before climbing in yourself.
Every kid wants to run away and live in the woods. With this pallet house DIY, you could do just that. In a more realistic world this would be an awesome fishing or hunting cabin, assuming you had the space to build it. You could also surround it with brush piles on three sides to make it nigh undetectable to passing hikers or bears.
Backyard Pond Installations
Every angler has dreamed of owning their own private pond, unfortunately for quite some time it was just that: a dream. Nowadays, however, if you have the land for it, backyard pond installation is a very popular trend and in many ways can be a wise decision for countless ways. For fishing enthusiasts there are even ways to integrate fish populations right in your own backyard!
In a Hole In the Ground...
Who wouldn’t want to have their very own hobbit hole? This amazingly complicated DIY guide details how you could conceivably build yourself an under-hill residence of your very own to bring a fantastical charm to your home’s landscaping. Be careful though - you risk unsolicited visits from wizards by owning a home of this nature.
A Home Within Range
This is probably the most easily achievable DIY on the list. A teepee is an age old design and would be awesome to build in the backyard for summer stargazing adventures with the kids. Guides like this one from Wikihow include everything you’ll need to design your own classic camping site. Be sure to keep in mind that this construction won’t stand up well over long periods of time, so take down is just as important as set up.