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New Zealand is a land famous for the spectacular landscapes that grace its untamed land, but far more interesting than that are the characters who inhabited the wilds of Aotearoa in the 1960s and 70s, and their amusing adventures in the bush and back-country. Author Tony Walsh shares stories of his escapades involving stealthy huntsmen, battles against the elements, and campsites populated by cheeky blokes in his new publication, The Black Singlet Brigade.
Tony Walsh was first introduced to NZ's bush clad ranges, to pig hunting and to some wonderful experiences by Ned, the husband of a staff member at the school where he taught in the early 60s. Ned's usual attire was a black woollen bush singlet and a pair of khaki shorts suspended by a thin leather belt, from which hung a pouched Green River skinning knife. He met some wonderful characters - weird, strange good keen men of an era now past.
There were the likes of ugly Eddie who ate all the pigs' ears; Jack, who thought the ghosts were after him after a midnight tumble down the hill; or Charlie, who didn't know whether to mash his spuds before or after they were cooked. These were men who scraped a living with their bare hands, culling deer while living months at a time in a back-country hut; or took to the bush for a relaxing weekend of pig-hunting, scrambling up and down steep ridges and through thorny scrub all in the name of fun. Men whose characters were as colourful and multifaceted as the forests and mountains they came from. With them, he experienced numerous adventures that will stay with him for the rest of his life.
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