I was eventually accepted by several colleges and decided on Humber College in Toronto. It offered a well-respected photography course.
Because of my growing interest, my Dad gave me his old 35mm rangefinder camera to use since he had recently purchased his 35mm Canon SLR. This was my first 'real' camera.
My growing interest in photography went naturally with my love of the outdoors. I lived in a very small rural town on Lake Simcoe, an hour north of Toronto, in central Ontario. My quest for subject material soon led me away from town out to the surrounding area.
One of my favorite excursions was the walk along the railroad tracks that led out of town. The tracks followed the shoreline of the lake, bordered by mixed bush and farmland. On one of these walks I was lucky to encounter a red fox family near their den. I was able to get pretty close without frightening them. I watched the pups play as the mother hunted nearby.
Armed with only a 48mm lens, I didn't get any good photos, but this was the defining moment of my outdoor photography career. I realized then just how much I loved the "hunt".
Even before the college year had begun, I had already started building my first camera system with my first SLR, an Olympus OM1. Within a couple of months I bought my 200mm lens and later a 2X teleconverter, and was completely hooked on outdoor photography.