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Jerry W. Bird
Return to Part One

Adventure Series
Adventure Rails
Adventure Roads
Adventure Isles
Klondike Country

Africa Series
Africa in One Country
Africa's Paris to its
Roman Basilica
Air Access to Africa

Asia's Dividends
Copters Fight Fires
Footloose in Vancouver
Historic Streetcars
Peace Through

Pride of the RCAF
SklyTrain Supermall
Underground Adventure
Vision Quest



















Adventures in Publishing ...
from Canada's Great Northwest
to the Roof of Africa
Part Two

Editor's Biography/ Jerry W. Bird: Mr. Bird's columns have appeared in Latitudes Magazine (Montreal), Africa Travel Magazine, Air Highway Journal of Open Skies, Canadian Traveller Magazine, Maturity Magazine, Roads to Canada's Great Drives, Seattle Prime Times, WingSpan Magazine and others. Here are some excerpts:

Adventure Islands and Inside Passage
I call them "The Adventure Islands," because the North Pacific has long been a magnet for adventurers and soldiers of fortune, including my father, who left the family's Seattle home for a post with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police at Dawson City in the far Klondike. (
Africa's Superstars of the Serengeti
Like a cinemascope movie, Africa's Animal Empire filled the scene, then fanned out in all directions on the far horizon, to the Tanzania - Kenya border, or to Lake Victoria and beyond. And what performers these four legged actors were; prancing about like tv wrestlers, snorting and butting heads, as if they knew they were the star performers of our show. On a rocky knoll nearby, a pride of lions lolled lazily, like cruise passengers on deck chairs, surveying the situation, as they stood by for the evening dinner gong.

Alaska's Sawtooth Range by Train
My endless fascination with railways and railroad memorabilia goes back to childhood days, when the White Pass & Yukon Railway of Gold Rush fame was linked via Skagway, Alaska, to a vast transportation system of BC-Alaska Coastal steamships and Yukon riverboats.

Asia's Peace Dividends- Great Wall and Silk Road
While breaking bread and sharing ideas with delegates from 18 Asia Pacific countries, I saw how once sworn enemies are now building bridges, opening roads and laying tracks for a post cold war tourism bonanza. For example, we've often been bedazzled by posters, brochures and videos of the exotic Silk Road, made famous by Kublai Khan, Atilla the Hun, Alexander the Great and Marco Polo. (

Copters Fight Forest Fires
When he launched his career a few decades ago, Bruce Campbell probably hadn't the faintest idea of being in the helicopter business, or even in the aviation industry. So how did he end up getting totally involved with a helicopter fleet operation, fighting forest fires across Canada?

Footloose in Vancouver's West End
Having been footloose in Vancouver since the days of streetcars, interurban trams, White Lunch, Woodwards Toyland and Union Steamships, I consider the West End my special domain. Morning, noon or night, it's always an inviting place for rubber-neckers, casual strollers, browsers, grazers and window shoppers. A sea of umbrellas one moment, local denizens decked in everything from beachwear to high fashion the next. It's a passing parade, minus the 76 trombones-just waiting for you to follow along.

Historic Street Cars, Street Scenes, Street Smarts
"Just then, we heard the four o' clock interurban tram approaching. Brick red, bound for glory and the fertile fields of Chilliwack, it rounded Venables Street, lurching onto Commercial Drive like a drunken sailor. Noisy, menacing and top heavy, the interurban trams were the ugly ducklings of BC Electric's vast fleet. They were also its workhorses, linking a network of towns and villages with Vancouver's central core. The squeal of metal on metal drowned out the doctor's reply." (

Klondike Memories and Yukon Gold
While most travelers approach the fabled 'Inside Passage' from various points due south, my first experience of this 1,200 mile Marine Highway, was from Canada's Klondike, having plied the Yukon River for four eventful days aboard the SS Casca, a classic paddle-wheeler ; chugging and puffing our way upstream from Dawson City to Whitehorse. After an overnight at the Regina Hotel, with its ornate lamps and Victorian furnishings, we boarded the narrow-gauge White Pass & Yukon Railway for a day trip, detraining on a wooden platform at historic Skagway. (

Peace Through Tourism in Ghana
Prejudices about a country or its people can best be removed by visiting the place. In the Kakum National Forest near Ghana's famous Gold Coast, are six rope bridges that are popular with tourists, and a challenge to cross. While these bridges swing and sway in the breeze, far above the forest floor, all fears a visitor encounters are strictly mental. Each interlocking bridge is safe and secure, and each relates to a goal we want to achieve with our agenda for Peace Through Tourism.

Pride of the Royal Canadian Airforce
There she stands, the sleek Avro CF-100, pride of the Royal Canadian Air Force, proud and sassy as ever, her body gleaming in the sunshine of another spring. At RCAF Base Trenton, north of Toronto, when I first saw her 'dance the skies on laughter-silvered wings,' she was Canada's debutante, a grand new star in the theater of the air.

SkyTrain: A Supermall 15 miles long..
Remember the grand old department stores of yesteryear - where a pert, petite, uniformed elevator operator sang out the stops as you rose at a stomach- churning rate? So, it was only Woodwards, but it felt like you were heading for the top floor of the Empire State Building. "Third floor - lingerie - perfumes - toiletries ..." Now, imagine a shopping area with 19 stops, offering a world of choice ...

Underground Adventure at Britannia Beach
On theSea-to-Sky Highway from Vancouver to Whistler-Blackcomb, is a unique tourist attraction, the museum at Britannia Beach. It's a salute to British Columbia's Mining industry and those who made their living underground.. Leaving Vancouver's North Shore via the "Upper Levels" you round the bend at Horseshoe Bay, where the BC ferry fleet departs for Nanaimo, the Adventure Islands and Sunshine Coast, then weave northward along the aptly-named Sea-to-Sky highway, to Whistler and points beyond.

Vision Quest's Canoe Journey into History
First Nations people from the Prince Rupert Hazelton area and points along the Inside Passage, joined Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers in Vision Quest. The 1,000 mile canoe journey, followed the Skeena River to the Pacific, then headed south in a month long event.

Follow the Whirlybirds to Victoria? During the Burma Shave road sign era , the advertising slogan one would see for decades on billboards leading into BC from its neighbouring provinces and states was " Follow the Birds to Victoria." It conjured up all sorts of images to lure the vacation bound traveller. Today, after receiving requests about Helijet Airways from readers in Southern California and as far away as Africa, I would change the slogan ...

Canada's Great Drives: Yellowhead Highway
Imagine your car is a time-capsule; cruising down a broad ribbon of Canadiana, in the wake of nomadic hunters, voyageurs, missionaries, traders, sodbusters, fortune-seekers and railroad builders. From Lake Manitoba to the Haida Gwa'ii (BC's Queen Charlotte Islands) , it's a 2600 km journey into history, with Indian encampments older than Egypt's great pyramids, national parks, ancient shrines and battle sites. Ethnic dances and pageants salute every facet of our heritage. "

On conservation
“With the escalating cost of paper, a valuable forest resource, publishers should strive to expand their reach and serve more readers with every copy. A good magazine should be a keeper, with an extended life span, like National Geographic, which never seem to go out of date."
Jerry W. Bird

Speaking of the Internet, he feels the real challenge is to cut through the clutter and bombardment of asinine pitches and empty promises. He is producing a book on that topic.

Jerry W. Bird
: Editor, Travel Writer, A/V Producer. Mr. Bird's columns have appeared in Latitudes Magazine (Montreal), Africa Travel Magazine, Air Highway Journal of Open Skies, Canadian Traveller Magazine, Maturity Magazine, Roads to Canada's Great Drives, Seattle Prime Times, Wing Span Magazine and others