~follow this story visually through the provided links on the website~
My love for The Great Outdoors started at the age of 7 when my dad purchased 33 acres atop of Fox Hill Road in the little town of Dalton; just outside of Letchworth State Park in Upstate New York. It was there that we built our cabin, cut a path to the back of the property and dug our pond/swimming hole/fishing hole. The land was covered with wild raspberries, strawberries, apple trees and one big blueberry bush by the gorge where we’d get our fresh spring water. The view at night was breathtaking…the field across that dirt road dropped off into all the town lights below and they met up with the stars. We’d ride our horses on the 33 acres and the thousands of acres around those. We wore cut off shorts and Dingo boots, built tree forts, shot rifles, fished, and cooked over open fires. My childhood was the beginning of a long love with “The Great Outdoors.”
As a teen, when I wasn’t at our land I was with my childhood buddy Mark at their farmhouse/hunting camp on Chautauqua Lake, where my love for fishing grew (walleyes, muskies, ice fishing) along with hunting small game, grouse, ducks and whitetails.
In 1977 I joined Dad on a trip to California where we camped and fished on the Truckee River, caught grouper and a six foot shark in the ocean in Santa Cruz, went cliff diving at Donner Lake, and I fished, snorkeled, and kayaked in Lake Tahoe, “What a Summer!” After graduating I returned out West to live and work in Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park hiking, trout fishing, rock climbing, all amongst the beauty of The Giant Sequoias.
Upon my return to Upstate NY from my “out-West” adventure, when I wasn’t fishing on Lake Erie or Lake Ontario, another childhood friend (Timmy) brought me to meet a club owner in Zoar Valley. I performed at the club nestled next to Cattaraugus Creek, and made more outdoorsmen friends to hunt with (4 of the songs on Volume 1 were inspired by this place/”hidden paradise”). Song #s 3, 4, 7, 8…bow hunting, turkey hunting, trout and salmon fishing and whitewater rafting…ohhh The Valley!
For the past 15 years I’ve enjoyed the beautiful surroundings just outside of Nashville, TN. I’ve raised my kids just up the hill from Old Hickory Lake with Percy Priest Lake in the backyard. I hunt in Cedars of Lebanon Forest and The Great Smokey Mountains are a frequent family vacation. I perform at the corporate events at The Opryland Hotel and when I hit the studio I play with the greatest musicians in the world of country music; all of which are proud to be part of The Great Outdoors Volume 1.
Why Volume 1? As you’ve read in The Story, I have much more to write about; turning stories to songs and honoring all the other species in The Great Outdoors, along with conservation reminders and a little country music humor thrown in. I look forward to Volume II…and so on…I hope you will too.
Thanks for listening,
James Patrick Lynch