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Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Twelve Days of Muskoka - Christmas & Holiday Local Gift Guide :: Day 9

We really dig living in Muskoka. The area is home to many beautiful iconic features and creatures that have come to help symbolize Ontario and Canada as we know it. But one of features that we like the most is how inspiring it is to live amongst the many artisans and crafters - that have made this land of rock and water their home - as well the smaller businesses that have come to be part of the personality and character of the Muskoka we have come to know and love. Thus Twelve Days of Muskoka, inspired by Suburban Tourist's Twelve Days of Holiday Gift Giving, is meant to celebrate these people and their businesses as well as introduce you to some new gift giving ideas and remind you of some old favourites.

The Ninth Day of Muskoka Christmas & Holiday Gift Giving Guide
Hap Wilson - Adventure, Art & Books

Hap Wilson stands with a painted
Digger honouring Kirk Wipper.
Another great example of the truly extraordinary people who make Muskoka their home is Hap and Andrea. Hap Wilson is a renowned Canadian naturalist, canoe tripper, author, illustrator and photographer. He has published numerous Canadian canoe route guides and books about wilderness life and just recently, along with his amazing wife, took on participating in the exciting project to link to The TransCanada Trail by way of canoe routes. A friend to Badger Paddles, Hap and his most beautiful wife Andrea Turner-Wilson, live in the Muskoka area (when they are not too busy with their many passions and projects that is!).

So basically, if you have traveled the Temagami area (or the Missinaibi, Coulonge or Dumoine rivers) there's a very good chance that you used one of his guide books. Beautifully illustrated, Hap's books became a wilderness route bible to many. While he has travelled far too many miles to count, Hap has always shared his experiences with us along the way through his writings, teachings, sketches, paintings, and photographs.

Thankfully, Hap's iconic artwork is available for purchase at select galleries or by contacting him directly. Visit his current website: or see a selection of his books available for purchase via Amazon here: Hap Wilson Books. Any one of his beautifully illustrated guide books would make for great winter reading as you plan and dream for next season's adventure - as a gift for a friend or well.... even yourself. For the record: We have several books of his in our own personal collection but are truly hoping to get our paws on an original Hap Wilson someday ourselves. And... Hap Wilson's artwork has always been an inspiration to Fiona.
One of the many guide books available,
authored, illustrated, and compiled by Hap.

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