Invisible Skills

Methods that work…


The big nudge and the photographer’s shadow

… Is not the sledge-hammer approach (usually)

… Is persistence, an ancient life skill almost universally useful, and is as close as you can get to inner stillness while still trying to do anything.  “1. to touch or push gently;  2. to prod lightly; urge into action”




Everyday use … Problem solving by baby steps … never quite giving up, or by giving up and then starting where you left off, and then continuing until the problem is solved.

Nudging Applied to Tracking …

“I can’t …”
“Well, I could do this …”
“Hmm, that worked and I’m a little closer …”
“What if I …?”

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“The only way to get anywhere else is to start where you are.”

Sitting is one way …  Walking another

Meditation applied to tracking:
Meditation is about inner stillness … still minds notice more, a lot more.



One Method Practiced:

Walk … In a safe calm-ish place

Distractions … Just helpers

Avoid dangers … They are another part of the practice

Notice and give way to wildlife … More practice

Visual Focus … Wide-Angle Vision*

Mental focus … The empty spot between your eyes

Breathing focus …  helps, sometimes, unless you fasten onto it


Herd the mind … It’s the most useful


Respect your own pace … ‘Cause you will ought to should want to

One step is progress … “Not too bad, not too bad at all”

Not trying … Oh yeah, that is the point

Enough …Is what you can

Maybe nudge … a bit

It’s ok not to … When?

What they say is true, there really is nowhere to go, nothing to do…no progress to make.

It seems to go against reason and logic, but what if it’s really that nothing is missing from or wrong with the present, the world?   After all, as Leonard Cohen says about cracks, “That’s how the light gets in.”

Oh, and by the way, you can’t see stillness.  It builds in the background, behind the glaring phosphorescent consciousness.  No! Wait!, you can see it!  Notice the changes.  I know, that’s vague, but you will.

A different way to communicate  … 

A successful experiment …

Mental focus between the eyes, in wide-angle vision.

“Shhhhh, shhhh, shhhh …”

The pine squirrels heard and did stop barking.


Humans … Something pretty interesting happens in the first few seconds after you first notice someone (or even just before?)

How do others react if you still your inner process and just gently notice them as if you were seeing the deepest good they carry?

Chickadees … Knew my inner state before I did!

Geese … Hear you when you are present … And they’re not the only ones!

*More about “Wide-Angle Vision” from Princeton University
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The Concepts:

Page: Aging Tracks … When?
Color Change

Page: The Concepts of Tracking… The Essentials
Testing Sand
The Translucent Foot
Whole Track: Red Fox – One Forward Step

Page: Foot and Body Movements … How body movement creates and is reflected in the tracks, and how to read it from them.
Canine Claw Tip Leaves Track in Fine Sand

Page: How To Find and See Tracks … Ways to reveal hard to see tracks and details
Controlling Lighting to Increase Visibility of Tracks
Finding the Next Track
Dust Compressions (Dull on Shiny by Canine Toe Pad)
Track on ‘Bare’ Rock (Red Fox Front Foot)
Using Stone Rolls to Find Tracks
The Tracking Stick

Page: How To Read Tracks … (and trails) – The problem isn’t lack of information
Simple Tire Track and Direction of Travel
True Track (Canine Toe Pad)

Page: Species … Tracks of distinct species and track features unique to them
Deer Foot – One Walking Step
Red Fox Front and Rear Feet – Side Trot

Page: Track Features … The story is left in the details
Pressure Against the Track Wall (Canine Toe Pad)
Simple ? Wave
The Ridge Between Canine Front Toes
The Layer of Sand in Contact With The Foot

Page: Trails and Sign … Reading all the layers
The Human Trail

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