Recent Articles and Blog Posts
Stuff we like: The Gyro screwdriver
The simplicity of the screwdriver: Turn it one way, the screw goes
in. Reverse it, the screw comes out. But add a cordless motor, and suddenly it’s not so simple. Now you’re trying to drive screws while fumbling with...
A bait-and-slip tactic
Fishing is for the birds at Glenn Armstrong’s Julian Lake place in the Kawarthas, thanks to a surplus rod that feeds chickadees and thwarts freeloading black squirrels and chipmunks. “I was trying to come up with a way to keep...
The buck stops here
Sure, they’re lovely, but when deer start snacking on your cottage raspberry patch, you’re apt to wonder how berry-fed venison tastes. Instead, Mark Kreger decided on a more inventive approach: separating Bambi from the...
5 common cottage weak spots
It's tough to deter professional burglars when no one's at the lake, but most B&Es are committed by opportunists who will move on if getting in is a challenge. Removing valuables limits the damage done to your wallet, but you...
Cold-water shock survival
The lake’s November chill arches my back, pries my mouth open, forces my eyes wide until, overhead, I see the pewter sky through a cloud of bubbles. A second ago, I was up there, on the dock. Now I’m below the surface,...
The science of sledding
The snowy slope beckons, your heart pounds a tattoo like a hungry woodpecker, and a little-kid grin is smeared across your face. It’s toboggan time, and ain’t it amazing how winter changes everything?
Take the laws of...
Avoiding vehicle-animal collisions
On a new section of Ontario’s Hwy. 69, north of the turnoff to Killarney, highway engineers are helping our moose (and other errant animals) arrive, accident-free, on the other side.
Ontario’s first large-animal wildlife...
How water gets contaminated
Unlike the aquatic problems cottagers are more familiar with (runoff of septic nutrients, lawn fertilizers, doggy doo), contaminants associated with soaps, shampoos, detergents, and pharmaceuticals involve unimaginably small...
How to read soap & cleaner labels
Words to watch for
Ratty old cottage chesterfields are biodegradable, too, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to dump them in the lake. To ensure your shampoo breaks down more rapidly, check...
How to get clean without chemicals
Look for the EcoLogo
Canada’s Environmental Choice certification for soaps and shampoos includes biodegradability tests, and a ban on phosphates and harmful ingredients, including EDTA, and alkylphenol ethoxylates, surfactants...