excerpts from

Three Years
on the
Nowhere Road





My first day at the mill

In point of fact, on my very first day at the mill, I was put to work loading bundles of shakes in the long, airless trailer of a semi-truck, with the result that, by the end of the day, despite the coolness of the outside air, I was ferociously hot and soaked with sweat. This wasn’t the sort of work I had counted on at all. As it happened, I would start on deck splitting cedar slabs the next morning, and never again spend a day loading a truck, but this sort of miserable grunt work seemed to be how they broke in a new man, just to see how well he could last. I only endured it by promising myself that as soon as I was back at camp, I would throw off my clothes, streak down the trail through the woods, and leap headlong into the cold, clean Calawah River.



More excerpts from
Three Years on the Nowhere Road
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Off to the wilderness

A bus from the Twilight Zone

I am picked up, then dumped

On a dark, deserted highway,
the kindness of a stranger


My first ride in a logging truck

Forks, logging capitol of the world

To a camp on the Calawah

Job Interview

Up before dawn, a logger’s breakfast

My first day at the mill

A dip in the river

Working deck at the mill,
and almost losing a hand


To a new camp, further downriver

Robert Lee:
the old logger who lived in a box


The Dickey River People

When a barrel stove becomes a cannon

Alone at last

At the outfitters

On Christmas Day, I am flooded out

At the mill, I am promoted to splitter

Encounter with a sasquatch?

A scene out of Dr. Zhivago

I settle in for a solitary winter

Hanshan, the mad hermit poet

Hiking the coastline with a tomcat

A night on a seastack

I join an encampment of friends
on a tributary of the Hoh


Calling at the country estate
of Robert Lee, Esq.


Visiting around the Peninsula
in Robert Lee's 2-gear sedan


A visit to a Makah family on Neah Bay

These opening chapters represent
about 20% of the entire book,
which I hope to release
later this winter.

BJ Omanson
Nov 2021