Lookout : love, solitude and searching for wildfire in the boreal forest

Published 2021
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"A powerful and intimate memoir about a young woman's grueling, revelatory summers working alone in a remote lookout tower and her riveting eyewitness account of the increasingly unpredictable nature of wildfire in the Canadian north. While growing up in Peace River, Alberta, Trina Moyles heard many stories of fire tower lookouts--strange, eccentric types who spent whole summers alone in 100-foot high towers, watching for signs of fire in the surrounding Boreal forest. How could you isolate yourself for that long? she wondered. Craving adventure and connection, she pursued humanitarian work abroad, and ultimately found herself in Uganda, immersed in a vibrant community with a deep sense of belonging--and in love with Akello, a warm, handsome Lugbara man. After three years in Uganda, Trina returned to Peace River with a plan to make money to sponsor Akello's immigration. She applied for the well-paid tower position and was offered the job. But, back in a place where she'd never truly felt she belonged, she began to sink under the weight of their shared dreams and economic goals. Thus begins her first summer as one of a handful of scattered lookouts in the Boreal, with only a farm dog, Holly--labeled part-wolf by her former owners--to keep her company. Throughout two grueling summers and the winter in between, Trina grapples with her long-distance relationship, the death of her treasured grandfather, and a dawning awareness of the environmental crisis in the Boreal forest. In her days alone, she teeters on the edge of sanity while discovering a new kind of self-awareness and self-reliance that only solitude can deliver. As she searches for smoke, there is a bright beam of hope, a deep consciousness of the nature and wildlife around her, and a burgeoning sense of community among those dedicated to wildfire detection and combat. Lookout is a personal, riveting story of loss, transformation and belonging to oneself, layered with an eyewitness account of the increasingly precarious state of our northern forests."-- Provided by publisher.

313 pages ; 24 cm
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