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What is the BushLife?

What is BushLife NZ about? 

The answer to this question is something that Ive been thinking on for awhile now, the answer in my head is clear enough but putting it down on paper for others has been something Ive been struggling with since my wife and I first came up with it.

I recently read an article in Wilderness Magazine about a young woman who had decided to commit suicide by getting lost in the bush and succumbing to the elements. During her attempt her whole perspective on life changed. Her story really struck a chord with me, here was someone for whom hitting the hills and choosing the BushLife had literally saved her life.

The BushLife is not just about epic trips. The truth is as much as I would love to go back to the jungle for months at a time or go climb a mountain, grown up responsibilities prevent me. I am happy to go goat or deer hunting for an afternoon or out to the range, visiting the local waterfall or even walking the dog down by the river is all thoroughly enjoyable. It helps a lot that I live out in the country surrounded on all sides by bush and farmland with native birds, regular visitors.

Geraint Jones author and a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, talked about using nature to treat PTSD and depression in a recent FB post, he said he couldn't remember the last time he had any symptoms since making time for the wilderness.

According to Jeroen Douwes, Massey University Professor of public health, "The benefits of being in the outdoors – beyond the basics of exercise and vitamin D – are numerous, and simply seeing greenery can be enough to make people feel better."

“People like looking at green space, and from an evolutionary point of view, we may have been programmed to enjoy it, or feel a need to be close to green space,” Douwes says.

A study has shown that surgery patients who looked out over green space recovered quicker than those who didn’t have views.

Sport Taranaki’s Gaylene Phillips says. “There has been a groundswell of focus on people wanting to do more natural things for their health, whether that’s getting more physically active or changing their diet.”

Phillips is the Ministry of Health’s green prescription contact for the Taranaki region. Working with patients referred by medical professionals, she helps to facilitate physical activity for people living with health issues such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, anxiety and depression. Initiated 15 years ago, green prescriptions have received consistently strong results, with 89 per cent of participants in 2018 noticing increases to their fitness and health levels.

Having isolated wilderness to enjoy in New Zealand makes a difference too, Phillips says, although “it’s something a lot of people take for granted”.

Having spent 20 years overseas its not something I take for granted, the opportunities we have on our doorstep are pretty unique not just that, but due to the fact all our hunting animals are introduced means that there are virtually no limits on most of our hunting. As much as I enjoy tramping it can seem kind of pointless at times, I feel  a much deeper connection with nature through hunting. Partly because as a hunter I stop and observe more but also because being elbow deep in a carcass is a pretty primal feeling, something people have been doing for millennia. It's also a great feeling to share meat with friends and family.

Yes we have gear to sell but BushLife NZ is so much more than just another webstore. The BushLife is for anyone that loves to spend time in the great outdoors whether for work or play. Buy our stuff or don't, either way hit the hills, live the BushLife! Join us on this journey and be sure to send us pictures. 

The cathedrals of nature are amazing!



Our mission is to deliver the coolest gear at the best prices and to promote the unique outdoor lifestyle only available in NZ.

Hit the hills, live the BushLife!

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