Rick Ranson and Walter Hildebrandt

About Rick Ranson

A natural-born raconteur, Rick Ranson, the third child in a family of six children, was raised by an enthusiastic, story-telling Royal Canadian Air Force Captain, and grew up in military bases across Canada, from Vancouver to Labrador. When he was 16, Ranson followed his wanderlust and hitchhiked from Winnipeg through the US to Toronto, and then from Winnipeg to Mexico, before surviving a canoe trip from Winnipeg to New Orleans. Today Ranson spends his time living between Winnipeg, MB, and Key West, Florida.

Ranson has worked as a longshoreman, a drill ship’s welder, a boilermaker, a farm equipment salesman, an editor for McGraw Hill, a forklift operator, a business owner, and now a published author. Ranson has contributed to several publications, including The Cottager Magazine, Gam on Yachting, Western Producer, and The Herald. He is also the author of Working North DEW Line to Drill Ship, which chronicles the eight years Ranson spent working as a welder in the Canadian Arctic. Paddling South: Winnipeg to New Orleans by Canoe was released in October 2007 and was shortlisted for the Alexander Kennedy Isbister Award for Non-Fiction at the Manitoba Book Awards. Paddling South was translated and published in Germany in 2009. Rick's latest book, Bittersweet Sands: Twenty-Four Days in Fort McMurray, was released in Fall 2014.


About Walter Hildebrandt

Historian and poet Walter Hildebrandt was born in Brooks, Alberta and now lives in Edmonton. He was the Director of University of Calgary Press and Athabasca University Press. He has worked as a historian for Parks Canada and as a consultant to the Treaty 7 Tribal Council, the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations and the Banff Bow Valley Task Force. He was awarded the Gustavus Myers Award in 1997, for outstanding work on intolerance in North America, for his book The Spirit and Intent of Treaty 7. His long poem Sightings was nominated for the McNally-Robinson Book of the Year in Manitoba in 1992. A previous volume of poetry, Where the Land Gets Broken, received the Stephan G. Stephansson for best poetry book in Alberta in 2005. Documentaries is his eighth book of poetry.