Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, April 29, 2023

MVNews this week:  Page A:12


Mountain View News Saturday, April 29, 2023 



Charlee "I'm So Cute" Thomas Harris Henderson

2010 -2023

On Thursday night, we lost probably 
the most precious member of our family, 
Charlee. A Swiss Shepherd with 
the best disposition ever, she left us 
peacefully at home after a brief battle 
with Kidney disease. 

The good news is that she displayed 
absolutely no discomfort until a few 
moments before she died, and she died 
of her own volition sparing us the pain 
of putting our pet 'down'.

The sad news is that this is the first 
edition of this paper that she wasn't 
lounging in the office making certain 
I got my work done.

Charlee was also a real Sierra Madrean. For years her best friend lived right across the 
street "Magic" and "Stella" who she would encountered on her daily walks..

She walked the streets on the weekend with Chris from Canyon Canine who took great 
care of her. And....true to Sierra Madrean activism, she became one of the first to object 
to the Monastery closing down access to the field where she and Hattie walked daily. She 
also conquered the Mt. Wilson Trail with her big human brother, Fred. (Let him tell you 
about that one!).

Charlee brought so much joy to everyone she met, and yes, she belonged to the entire family, 
especially our granddaughters and even her sister, the cat, Chloe. 

The legacy of Charlee's life is the real reason I'm sharing this. You see, Charlee was a rescue, 
less than a year old with only one 'blue eye' so she could not be an AKC registered dog. 
She was abandoned in the desert and a family that already had 3 dogs rescued her when 
she was just a few months old. Had it not been for that act of kindness from the rescuers 
and our ability to take Charlee in, a lot of love would have never been shared. So, just remember, 
that animals who have been relegated to shelters and/or abandoned can bring you 
a lot of love and joy, and the relationship is mutual. 
This space in the newspaper every week is dedicated 
to animals who need your help. Think about it. You 
might just end up on the receiving end of a wonderful, 
unconditional love. 

Special Thanks to Dr. Walter Cailleteau and the 
staff of Sierra Madre Animal Hospital who cared for 
Charlee for so many years and Access Animal Hospital 
who assisted us in dealing with Charlee's passing.

Rest in Peace our dear Charlee. We miss you so 
much. Susan Henderson

Foreword and Photos by 
Christopher Nyerges

[Nyerges has been an author and 
teacher of ethnobotany and survival 
skills since 1974. This new book is available at]

The Legacy and Lineage of Larry Dean 

Anyone who has been teaching outdoor 
survival skills for any length of time has undoubtedly 
heard of Larry Dean Olsen. He 
was born in 1939 near Jerome, Idaho. After 
Olsen graduated from Brigham Young 
University, he began teaching survival field 
trips through the college’s Continuing Education 
Division in 1968, sharing his love for 
the outdoors, and his intense interest in the 
skills of the local indigenous peoples.

At the time, there were scant few others 
teaching the skills that sustained indigenous 
peoples for millenia. As a Mormon, 
Olsen was devoted to always being ready, 
including being able to survive in a harsh 
wilderness. In addition, there were very 
few native peoples teaching the old ways 
of plant uses, flint knapping, trapping, and 
fire-making because most were too occupied 
just trying to stay alive in the modern 

As part of his outdoor training, he would 
take students into the desert of the Great 
Basin area and live off the land for a week 
or longer. They had to learn how to eat wild 
plants, trap small game, make fire with 
local materials, build a shelter, weave sandals, 
find water, and more. It was a grueling 

He wrote “Outdoor Survival Skills,” first 
published in 1967, which described all the 
survival skills he’d been teaching. His book 
has long been considered the definitive 
classic book on the subject. The book has 
been updated every few years and remained 
in print all these years. 

Larry was the originator of the Rabbit Stick 
Rendezvous, a gathering for a week where 
people could camp out and learn the skills 
in a more leisurely manner. The event – 
and various knock-offs -- continues to this 
day, continued by students of his. His students 
began the Boulder Outdoor Survival 
School, and Larry continued to work at 
the Anasazi organization, which he co-
founded, which gave guidance to youth in 
the wilderness.

Larry was perhaps the most visible person 
teaching and sharing the extreme art of living 
off the land. It is not an overstatement 
to say that everyone today teaching these 
skills has some lineage, direct or indirect, 
that leads back to Larry Dean Olsen.

I remember when I first found a copy of the 
original edition in my older brother’s things. 
He was a camp counselor and thought the 
information would help him. I took the 
book and studied it, and it became a part of 
my life as I pursued learning outdoor survival 
skills and the uses of the many plants 
that the indigenous peoples used.

Olsen’s book became my “bible” of a sort 
–the key to the actual application of every
skill needed to stay alive without the assistance 
of civilization. I was amazed that
such a compact resource even existed. I
began to practice making fire with the bow
and drill because of this book, and I learned
the process of weaving sandals from cattail 
leaves. I also started making primitive
weapons and traps, and I began the dangerous 
path of flint-knapping, which is the
art of flaking a piece of obsidian or other
hard material to produce razor-sharp arrow
heads and spear points. It’s dangerous because 
if you don’t do it right, you take off 
pieces of skin, as I did too many times.

My school friend Nathaniel and I often 
practiced the skills together. We had heard 
about the budding Rabbit Stick Rendezvous, 
and wanted to attend a session in Utah. But 
for us, in high school at the time, getting 
the money together and traveling there was 
insurmountable for us. As I recall, the cost 
for the week was something like $70, but it 
might as well have been a million dollars for 

Still, Larry was like an idol to us, you could 
say he was our cult leader in our secret wilderness 
sect. We worshipped him from 
afar. No, we had no golden idol, but we invoked 
his name at nearly every occasion. 

Over the years, I would quote Larry in the 
many books and newspaper articles I wrote. 
Eventually, around 2004, I became the editor 
of the Wilderness Way magazine, and 
called upon Larry for some advice, and to 
write for us. We talked on the phone, and 
shared e-mails. I never got him to write 
for us, but I did get lots of good advice. I 
never managed to get to the gathering that 
he started either, though I followed many of 
his journeys and adventures from afar by 
reading reports from other students.

I was saddened when I heard that this gentle 
giant died in 2019. I had always wanted to 
meet him, and to learn at his feet. At about 
that time, I was asked if I could update Larry’s 
classic book! What an honor it was to 
be a part of the Olsen lineage. I spent many 
months lightly editing the text, and adding 
some charts and short paragraphs where I 
felt it would enhance what Larry wanted to 

The hard part of the revision was to provide 
all new color photos for all the skills 
listed in the book, including new photos for 
the various wild plants described for food, 
medicine, and other uses. Though I have 
been teaching for over 40 years, I was only 
able to draw upon my last nearly 20 years of 
photography with a digital camera. Whereas 
the original black and white photos had 
the feeling of going on one long trip with 
Larry, my pictures were picked from many 
classes over a long period of time, with men, 
women, children, and people of all walks of 
life. In many cased, we had to go into the 
field to take brand new photos of certain 
skills or crafts.

The result is the 7th edition of “Outdoor 
Survival Skills,” a book I am proud to be a 
part of. I hope that the memory of Larry 
Dean Olsen lives on, and that the introduction 
of new photos in a revised book will 
continue to inspire a whole new generation 
to learn these most fundamental skills.


by Larry Dean Olsen 7th edition now available.


LONDON, (aka “Londi, Tiger Girl, Sweetheart”), age 4, is curious 
and undemanding. Her foster parents are leaving the area in 
early May. She urgently needs a loving forever home.

Typically tortie, she is happy to watch birds through the window, 
play quietly by herself, explore nooks and shelves, stretch 
out in the 
sun, and 
be indulged with cat treats. Londi 
has developed steadily and touchingly 
into an independent, lovely 
young lady over the past three years. 
While not a “lap cat,” she is a positive 
DEAR, who deserves a loving, 
affirming, respectful new home. 
She is spayed, fully vaccinated, and 
in excellent health. Londi will come 
with a carpeted cat tree, a vast array 
of toys, and a month’s supply of cat 
food. See her video and more pix on 
our website's Adult Cats page, where you will also see how to apply 
for her.

 If you can't adopt yet, please share with others who can. We would also consider a long-
term foster. Good news: Savannah, Henry and Vivian have been adopted!

Pet of the Week

Big Blue the handsome husky mix is just waiting for his snuggle 
buddy! He has affectionately been described as a “big goofball” 
because he gets a little lost in the moment and trips over himself. 
He’s probably too busy pondering the mysteries of the universe 
to watch where he’s going. Blue recently was out on a field trip 
and he received a 5-star rating! He enjoyed meeting new people, 
seemed very interested in meeting other large dogs and was great 
at home. This sweet guy is just waiting for someone to say; 

“You’re my boy, Blue”! Is that you? The adoption fee for dogs is 
$150. All dog adoptions include spay or neuter, microchip, and 
age-appropriate vaccines. New adopters will receive a complimentary 
health-and-wellness exam from VCA Animal Hospitals, 
as well as a goody bag filled with information about how to 
care for your pet. View photos of adoptable pets and schedule an 
adoption appointment at 

Adoptions are by appointment only, and new adoption appointments 
are available every Sunday and Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. 

Pets may not be available for adoption and cannot be held for potential adopters by phone 
calls or email. 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: