About Jack Noon
In this manner, here in this volume you’ve just cracked open, Jack has highlighted the way that the clearcutting of virgin timber warmed the streams and reduced their late-summer flow thus threatening the local trout – a message timely and important to stop the clearcutting of old growth timber in the Tongass National Forest way up here in the state of Alaska. He has outlined the costs of overfishing, damming, and industrializing what were wild trout, salmon, and sturgeon streams; dramatically and critically corrected the record of early salmon runs in the state’s rivers based upon actual reports from those days that he has found; and described his own work with loons and raptors in northern New Hampshire. Among the chapters here he evokes many of the ways things were in the earlier centuries – what life was like, and how it has changed. He introduces us to his grandfathers and to a much more recent climb to greet the bicentennial sunrise, and critically debunks a lot of the fictions about the much celebrated and mythologized “chief” Metallak. He writes about human and natural history, conservation, and of course, fishing. Here is a true New Hampshire Renaissance man in my book, who uses his historical research to explain the paths to our modern environmental issues, and perhaps to answers for them. Scientists, bio-logists: pay attention to the elders’ data and observations – they can be of value.
Those of us who know Jack will recognize his favorite tools: a sharp axe, a draw knife, a canoe paddle, an old pickup truck, and a draft horse with an attitude. Add a cribbage board on a crooked wooden table with match sticks for pegs and a dogeared deck of 50 plus 2 doctored jokers. And a wrinkled, leaky fish-stocking skiff borrowed from Fish and Game after they retired it. And of course a pencil, a notebook, the photocopier of a small-town library, and some kind of keyboard (I don’t know what he types on, maybe a clackity old Olympia, but he’s not online with a computer for email).