TRUE PIONEERS: Meet Bonnie Ward, a Nicholas County wife who, along with her husband, gave up everything to move to ALASKA for 15 years.
Facing the harsh elements, the Wards find strength in each other, and the awe-inspiring beauty of “the last frontier.”
And just when they finally settle in, a freak accident proves to be the ultimate test of their resolve.




What would YOU DO if your husband came home, and said you were moving to ALASKA?

– Oh, and also said he QUIT his job and put the house UP FOR SALE?

It didn’t take long for a brave woman to say YES and became a “wilderness wife” in Alaska.


Rainbow over the lake near Frying Pan Island.

Rainbow over the lake near Frying Pan Island.

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15 thoughts on “WCHS TV Channel 8 News INTERVIEW OF SAM & BONNIE

  1. Curt Smith

    Cool. Hardier than we are! I am into summer 4 on our new cabin. Finally go the wood stove installed. Your guys were fast!

    • Thanks, Curt! We had to be fast building our first cabin in the wilderness. Summers are short and we were living in a pup tent while we built our cabin. We worked every single day sometimes 16 hours a day to get a ‘real’ roof over our head. The only down time was when Sam had that tragic accident. Our first cabin was small though so that helped. Only 18′ x 16′. But it felt like a mansion after the pup tent!

  2. LuAnn Sell

    Are you planning on writing anything else as a follow up?

  3. Diana Matheny Jones

    I believe my brother Jim Matheny and wife Linda met you when they did an Alaska trip. Linda told me about you and I just returned from an Alaskan cruise. I am now reading your book. You two made for one another, I admire you!

    • Hello, Diana!
      How wonderful to hear from you! The names of Jim and Linda are familiar. Do you know if they came out to the island to meet us? Did someone bring them? I hope you enjoyed my book. How nice you were able to take an Alaskan cruise. It’s beautiful, isn’t it! I am working on a sequel, as Winds of Skilak only covers the first two years. Thanks for writing, and please forgive me for taking forever to write back. Bonnie

  4. Lisa

    Hi Bonnie, I loved your book. I do wish we were younger to give this life style a try. I’d love it. You inspire me so. I can’t wait for your next book.I’ve been curious,,, never had children huh. It would have been a great place to raise children. I’ll be looking out for your next book. Thank you. Lisa

  5. Lisa, from NH

    Any idea when your next book will be out?

  6. Bill Belanger

    I read your book and loved it….I lived in Alaska from 1970-1974 .I didn’t live as you and Sam however I did spend a a lot of time out in the woods hunting and fishing….I hope all is good with you two and looking forward to your next book……Bill in Colorado…..Im still living the dream also in a small mountain town….

    • Hi Bill! Thank you so much for reading my book. Sam and I are happy to hear that you enjoyed it. Sounds like we have Alaska in common. Great place, isn’t it? We are doing well and like you, we are also still living the dream, only now, it’s in central West Virginia! Hope to have the sequel to Winds of Skilak published within the next few months! Thanks for taking the time to drop a few lines!


  7. Raymond Kezler

    Friend gave me ‘Winds of Skiklak’ and am almost done and ready to read your next. What is the name of your second book?

    • Hello, Raymond! Thank you for reading my Winds of Skilak, and thank your friend for me for sharing it! My second book is called Winds of Skilak The Continuing Saga of one couple’s adventures and survival in the Alaskan Wilderness. I hope you enjoy it!

      • Raymond Kezler

        Ordered it and picked it up yesterday! The friend who gave me the first version has been to Alaska twice, both times the Brookes Range for Grizzly and Dahl Sheep. Looking forward to start reading your second book and thanks for your reply.

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