Dawn Again: Tracking the Wisdom of the Wild
BY Doniga Markegard
Dawn Again: Tracking the Wisdom of the Wild is a memoir of exploration and survival that will inspire you to better tend to the planet, even if it’s simply tending the soil in your own backyard!
By recounting her own wilderness immersion, animal tracking, and farming experiences, [Dawn Again] deftly traces a line from the incredible complexity of nature’s wisdom to humanity’s vital role as ecologically responsible stewards of the land.
—Allan Savory, author of Holistic Management, Third Edition: A Commonsense Revolution To Restore Our Environment
Dawn Again takes readers along Doniga’s journey from unsettled teen to immersive nature school student to wildlife tracker to a cattle woman on a mission to save the food system through regenerative agricultural practices that restore the soil and other non-human elements of the planet.
One of the few female voices in both wilderness immersion and ranching, Dawn Again is a nature memoir that shares a young woman’s experience hitchhiking across the pacific northwest, waiting patiently to connect with a deer on its terms, and tracking in Alaska where she finally came face to face with white wolves and the rigor of wilderness survival.
When Doniga tracks mountain lions with Erik, a rancher, she finds herself falling in love with more than just nature. She settles down on a cattle ranch on the California coast to start a family, and has to learn how to apply the deep lessons of the wild to her everyday life.
Advocating for nature knowledge and ecological wisdom, Dawn Again dives into Doniga’s real-life experiences as a woman, environmentalist, wilderness expert, woman rancher, mother, and producer in the food system.
Doniga has given us a manual on how to get in touch with our best selves, through getting in touch with the earth. —Joan Baez
Dawn Again represents a particularly good example of alternative schooling. The author’s experiences as a wildlife observer, mother, and rancher are significant, and descriptions of her immersive nature education in the first third of the work are particularly vivid and clear. —Foreword Reviews
The most powerful and important book I’ve read this year. —Wandering Educators
Markegard excels as a writer when she describes tracking wolves, especially a “lone white wolf running across the side of a tundra-covered hill.” —Huffington Post
Although many men have attempted total nature immersion, some have succeeded while many failed. Doniga triumphs. She literally speaks to an ancient spirit that walks among us to provide a nourishment for the soul. Her story will be shared around many campfires. It epitomizes what we wish to become in a hero-less world. —Tony Ten Fingers, Oglala Lakota, author of Lakota Wisdom
Doniga Markegard’s journey from teen runaway to expert tracker and on to mother, rancher, and activist artfully conveys what it means to be fully alive to the natural world. Her story offers readers inspiration and direction. —Judith D. Schwartz, author of Water in Plain Sightand Cows Save the Planet
Earth care comes alive in this deeply moving personal story. With prose good enough to be called poetry, Doniga captures and explains the heart and soul of creation stewardship, bringing us on a profound journey of awakening and awareness. —Joel Salatin, author of Folks, This Ain’t Normal and You Can Farm
Dawn Again will inspire all readers to tend to the soils in their own backyards. —Diana Rodgers, RD, author of The Homegrown Paleo Cookbook
Dawn Again is a deeply personal, touching, and intimate journey that opens a window into a hidden universe of exquisite natural beauty. With poetic prose and keen insights, Doniga Markegard gives us invaluable understanding to heal our souls and our world. —Josh Tickell, author of Kiss the Ground and director of Fuel
Dawn Again recounts one woman’s amazing bravery. But more importantly, it inspires one to be brave too. —Mark Elbroch, author of Behavior of North American Mammals and Mammal Tracks and Sign
Doniga’s love for the natural world—its animals, birds, plants, and soil—shines brilliantly through the words in this frank and engaging memoir. Her intimacy with the interconnection of all life, however, goes far beyond words, for she has genuinely LIVED it, with authenticity, passion, determination, and an open heart. —Paul Rezendes, author of Tracking & the Art of Seeing and The Wild Within
Dawn Again is a magnificent story of one woman’s journey through adversity to wildness to vision and deep connection. Doniga’s blend of epic storytelling, eloquent nature writing, and bold vision are exactly what we need to face our current challenges. The ideas and deep wisdom laid out in this book give me hope. —Nate Summers, Program Director, Wilderness Awareness School
Doniga Markegard is a wildlife tracker, regenerative rancher, speaker, and author of Dawn Again: Tracking the Wisdom of the Wild and Wolf Girl: Finding Myself in the Wild. Her teen years in nature school started her on a path that led to a career in animal tracking and then permaculture and ranching on her farm in California, Markegard Family Grass-Fed, where she works to regenerate both soil and community through farming. Using the innovative, carbon-storing methods of regenerative ranching, she’s restoring the land she tends, bringing back native grasses and wildlife.
Doniga is a consultant and guest instructor at Nature Awareness Programs around the country, has led retreats in places such as 1440 Multiversity and Canyon Ranch and is a regular speaker at events such as the Bioneers Conference, Food Inspiration Trendsummit, and The Grassfed Exchange. She is a certified educator with Holistic Management International. She has worked with companies such as Patagonia, Tesla and Google, and has been featured in articles from Civil Eats, FastCompany, GreenBiz, The San Francisco Examiner, and NPR. Most recently she has been featured in the film Kiss the Ground, available on Netflix.