Jim Ballou has been writing as a hobby for over twenty years. He has over a dozen titles in print. Additionally, he has written more than sixty magazine articles that have appeared in five different periodicals, including The Backwoodsman, Backwoods Home Magazine, Wilderness Way Magazine, Primitive Archer, Modern Survival Magazine, and The Survivalist Blog.
Ballou’s career has been in insurance sales, but his hobbies have included (among other things) hunting, fishing, camping, practicing outdoor skills, the shooting sports, archery, blacksmithing, leathercraft, treasure hunting, playing guitar, spending time with his wife and kids, and learning about history as well as so many other things. He first became interested in wilderness survival as a kid when he read the book, My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George, after first watching the movie version in the theater at least forty-five years ago.
Ballou served four years in the United States Army during the mid-late 1980s. He became a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division and left military service honorably after his enlistment ended with the rank of Sergeant E5. Although his four-year enlistment was entirely during peacetime, he considers the training he received, which included armorer’s school, jungle operations training in Panama, etc., to have been valuable on many levels.
He calls North Idaho home.