Bruce Kuipers had never been much of a father or husband. Distant, angry, and a serial cheater, he shoved away his three sons—journalist Dean, forester Brett, and troubled Joe—and alienated his wife. But Bruce did succeed in imparting to his sons his love of the outdoors and the fishing and hunting skills involved in that passion.
In 1989, Bruce purchased a 100-acre property as a way to lure his sons back after a divorce that had done further damage to an already damaged family. The land was the perfect bait, but the moment the sons arrived, conflicts arose over whether the land—which had been degraded and reduced to a few stands of pine and blowing sand—should be left alone or be actively restored. After an impasse of years, Bruce acquiesced, and his sons proceeded with their restoration plan. What happened next was a miracle of nature.
Dean Kuipers weaves a beautiful and surprising story about the restorative power of land and of his own family, which so desperately needed healing. Heartwarming and profound, The Deer Camp is the perfect story of fathers, sons, and the beauty of the natural world.