No one asked me to look after the rescue lodges, I just decided that if no one else was going to do it, then I would.
I live very remotely, a good three hour drive from the nearest town.
This is rich, fertile hunting grounds, and in the off season it is a well traveled hiking spot. The point is that no matter how wicked the snowy weather gets, there will be someone out here in the woods. The rescue lodges are a series of small cabins set up with bottled water, canned food, blankets, and a heating source. Since there is no electricity we can’t use space heaters, but some of the cabins have fireplaces, and the others all have wood burning stoves in them. We always leave a week’s worth of wood for the fireplaces and stoves, but we have found that it wasn’t enough, and that we needed to leave instructions as well. It turns out the kind of people who get lost in the snow are the same kind of people who don’t know how to build a fire in a furnace or fireplace. I made a series of drawings and written instructions, like IKEA instructions, nailed to the wall near the furnaces and fireplaces so people could see how it was done. You can see why I do this work, because I didn’t provide shelter and heating spots in the deep woods, there would be a lot more frozen bodies come the Spring thaw. I just hope someone else takes over when I get too old to do it.