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The Final Frontiersman Audiobook

The Final Frontiersman: Heimo Korth and His Family, Alone in Alaska's Arctic Wilderness

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Publisher's Summary

The inspiration for The Last Alaskans - the eight-part documentary series on Animal Planet.

Hundreds of hardy people have tried to carve a living in the Alaskan bush, but few have succeeded as consistently as Heimo Korth. Originally from Wisconsin, Heimo traveled to the Arctic wilderness in his feverous 20s. Now, more than four decades later, Heimo lives with his wife approximately 200 miles from civilization - a sustainable, nomadic life bounded by the migrating caribou, the dangers of swollen rivers, and the very exigencies of daily existence.

In The Final Frontiersman, Heimo's cousin, James Campbell, chronicles the Korth family's amazing experience, their adventures, and the tragedy that continues to shape their lives. With a deft voice and in spectacular, at times unimaginable detail, Campbell invites us into Heimo's heartland and home. The Korths wait patiently for a small plane to deliver their provisions, listen to distant chatter on the radio, and go sledding at 44 degrees below zero - all the while cultivating the hard-learned survival skills that stand between them and a terrible fate. Awe inspiring and memorable, The Final Frontiersman is like a rustic version of the American dream and reveals for the first time a life most of us have never imagined: amid encroaching environmental pressures, apart from the herd, and alone in a stunning wilderness that - for now - remains the final frontier.

©2015 James Campbell (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (538 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Marcus 02-25-16
    Marcus 02-25-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Impressive life story!"

    I first heard of heimo and Edna by watching a one hour program on YouTube made by vice a couple of years ago, and recently I took my time to watch the last alaskans to view more of their life. Being a hunter and outdoorsy person I've always found those kind of stories inspiring!

    And now 2 days after I started on this book, I'm must say that I'm even more impressed by heimo and his family's life and his dedication to the bush!

    The story was well told and the narrator did a great job telling it, nothing to complain about there at all!

    I wish them both a long and happy life out there in the wilderness! (yes, they still live out there as far as I know)

    20 of 23 people found this review helpful
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    Scottboze 05-24-16
    Scottboze 05-24-16 Member Since 2017
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    "Interesting Story"

    While it was interesting to hear about the Korth's life as a family and some of what lead to their living in the bush, I would have liked to hear more about HOW they lived. More about trapping, hunting, woodslore. I understand that wasn't inyended to be the focus of this book, but maybe another installmet could offer more insight? Maybe some more survival and "close call" stories.

    19 of 25 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James Pidel 11-03-16
    James Pidel 11-03-16 Member Since 2010
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    "Just a great read (listen)"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend this book to anyone that enjoys this genre.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It is a well written story about an exceedingly interesting family. Heimo, is an extraordinary man. He is the type of person it seems to me that would be a lot of fun to be able to visit, and sit around the fire to listen to his stories.


    What does Dan Woren bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He gets an "A plus" from me.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I was moved by the entire story. It is a story that allowed me to vicariously live in my mind in away I know I could never live in real life. I was moved by many aspects of the story. The loss of his child and the amazing relationship he has with his wife are very compelling. However, by far most interesting is their life in Alaska as a whole.


    12 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 04-22-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Heart of Alaska"

    The most incredible adventurous book I have ever read. It really sparks a dream in me to head for Alaska. Real. Raw. Interesting. I did not like that it ended so quickly!!!!

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pat Wiln 11-13-17
    Pat Wiln 11-13-17 Member Since 2006
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    "Great story about an amazing life"

    This was a thoroughly enjoyable story. The life Heimo has chosen and mastered is striking. AUDIBLE 20 REVIEW SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shane Hamiton 11-13-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Great story"

    This is a great story about a fascinating real life character. AUDIBLE 20 REVIEW SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anna G 11-09-17
    Anna G 11-09-17 Member Since 2017
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    "all about life in Alaska"

    this is a very informative book regarding life in Alaska in rural parts of Alaska. it describes the struggle of everyday life. I did not find this book exciting and at times it was hard to get through it. but it was nice to see from somebody else's perspective on how hard it is to survive in the wild.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike 11-08-17
    Mike 11-08-17 Member Since 2011
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    "great story of an era that is coming to an end"

    great story following one of the last true woodsman in Alaska. It's incredible they survived the conditions and it's astounding the idiocy of the bureaucracy driven by politics to regulate an immense area the lawmakers have never themselves experienced.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Prsilla 11-07-17
    Prsilla 11-07-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Well-Written Study of a Thorough S.O.B."

    Yes, this book is well-written and quite thoroughly covers Alaska past and present – and much more than just the experiences of one family. The author is related to the family and he says that Heimo resisted his efforts to get closer and learn enough to write the book. So James Campbell has written an enormous report on the whole subject of Alaska interspersed with descriptions of his visits to Heimo’s family and their ongoing story. This makes it extremely useful to a certain segment of readers except for the fact that it was written 13-14 years ago. There are no maps or pictures or an epilogue for the book. I found on You-Tube the film that other reviewers refer to. Incredibly, Heimo also has a fan page on FaceBook! I had purchased the book before S. Spencer posted that very negative but accurate review. I had just listened to The Snow Child, whose author was born in Alaska and lives there now. I have loved O Rugged Land of Gold and Home in the Bears Domain by Martha Martin (Helen Bolyan), also set in the wilds of Alaska. In these other books, the source of income was gold mining and farming – not so-called fur trading which is a euphemism for killing animals for their fur! [I even went to the Neiman-Marcus website and looked for fur. There was a lot of faux-fur, so the times really are a-changing.]

    Heimo is the son of German immigrants. His father was a drunken brute. Apparently, Heimo was given a fine body which could stand up to the physical demands of harsh wilderness life. He was fortunate to find an Eskimo wife. She already had a son and daughter by two different men, one a fiancé who died. Still, Heimo could have gotten counseling and pitted himself against all sorts of challenges besides traplines above the Arctic Circle, proudly living sustainably, as they say, by taking the lives of animals. And the narrator just reads very pleasantly; he does not even slow down when the horrific treatment of a fox is described.
    Interestingly, the author waits to describe the tragedy of the lost child, actually the couple’s first-born, Colleen. For me, that would have ended the marriage, and for them it very nearly did. Look, doofus, you do not set a two-year-old on the lap of a six-year-old, tell her to hang on tight, and take off in a small boat on a swollen river! If Edna had been holding Colleen, the child might have been lost anyway. For a man like Heimo, the wife has to be very compliant, like, whatever you say, dear. They did not raise four kids! They handed Edna’s first two off to Edna’s family, said to be an Eskimo tradition. They actually raised just two. And my heart goes out to the high school age daughter who is sent to Wisconsin to live with her uncle and try to make it in a real town among bigoted white people! The children are attractive but with black hair and Asian sort of eyes, they are not quite Native American nor Hispanic nor Chinese or Japanese. Neither Heimo nor Edna even finished high school. People like that don’t even know what they don’t know! The book hardly mentions Anchorage, but at least the kids (yes, the couple went ahead and made two more daughters) needed some town life with a good library, sports, art, theatre, ballet, an orchestra. Enya on a CD was the best they got!

    For the future of Alaska, oil drilling, keeping the wilderness, the future of high-end tourism, the book doesn’t even get to Sarah Palin. As for my strong opinions, I have a half-Vietnamese step-daughter who arrived in the U.S. aged 11 and was a real handful. I live in South Lake Tahoe and suffer the noise pollution of private jets landing and taking off all summer at all hours including 0230. Arrogant rich bastards taking advantage! On quiet nights I lie awake and relish hearing the coyotes singing. Their dens are in the meadow just beyond the next street over. And I volunteer to help with injured and orphaned wildlife, including large and small birds, squirrels, raccoons, chipmunks, river otters, foxes, and bears. Everything wants to live! I wanted to cry the evening a clueless man who had not worn the prescribed volunteer uniform of long pants kicked a hungry fox kit who tried to climb his bare legs. As for PETA, I sign their petitions; they are courageously speaking up for animals. I am vegetarian, not vegan.

    So no, something is really out of kilter with this very yang book. The feminine principle cannot be ignored. It’s about Respect Life, including the family life of people and animals. When the wealthy pay for a helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon, are they admiring the geology – or are they imagining the oil to be extracted? And same with Alaska. We need balance, respect. The book makes one interesting point that in trying to preserve wilderness, some would insist there be no people at all – not even scruffy types like Heimo – not even sturdy backpackers who make quite an effort to finally arrive at some breath-taking view. All in all, while the book is well written and well read, I did not enjoy it and I certainly entertain no admiration for Heimo.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 11-05-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Goodbye 48!"

    Wow! Loved every minute of this book! It really made me want to head out to the bush. I can absolutely recommend this book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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