Lost in the Valley of Death

The Parvati Valley in the Indian Himalayas — known for its overwhelming beauty — calls to those who want to shed their possessions as part of a quest for spiritual enlightenment. As Harley Rustad reports at Outside, it’s also known for a plethora of missing and (presumably murdered) Western adventure tourists.

Source: Outside
Published: Dec 13, 2018
Length: 25 minutes (6,395 words)

Love Letters From the Battlefield

Separated by thousands of miles and the Second World War, author Harley Rustad’s grandparents maintained a correspondence spanning hundreds of letters over four years. As he traveled through Europe and North Africa commanding a tank troop in the 11th Canadian ¬≠Armoured Regiment, Harry Mac¬≠donald kept one of Jacquelyn Ruth Robinson’s letters — the one that kept him going, the one in which she said “yes.”

Source: The Walrus
Published: Nov 9, 2018

How I Learned to Love Bonsai

Unsatisfied with his own efforts at growing Ficus religiosa, bonsai enthusiast Harley Rustad totes his too-tall tree to Ontario to seek advice from Canadian bonsai expert Nigel Saunders. Saunders tends over 180 bonsais and has attracted a cult following for his instructive YouTube videos — his miniature lemon tree alone has earned 1.5 million views.

Source: The Walrus
Published: Oct 5, 2018
Length: 16 minutes (4,146 words)

Big Lonely Doug

How a single ancient tree in western Canada became a nationwide celebrity and media sensation, as well as the powerful image environmental groups needed to try to slow the ongoing destruction of the country’s old-growth forests.

Source: The Walrus
Published: Sep 21, 2016
Length: 11 minutes (2,985 words)