Wouldn’t it be nice to emerge from the weekend more knowledgable than when you went in? A bought or two on how to make that happen.
We start with our GetOriented! Finding Your Way in the Woods class. Ever been hiking in the woods, drift into a little reverie, then emerge, look around and think, Where the heck am I? More often than not your still on the trail, where you need to be, just a little further along. But in those few seconds of being mentally misplaced, there’s a real panic. Will I ever see civilization again?read more
Over the past week, the U.S. Forest Service has announced plans for numerous prescribed burns in North Carolina, Virginia and Tennessee. We share this information for two reasons:
1. Prescribed burns: what and why?
According to the Forest Service, “Prescribed burning is an important and versatile forest management tool that can mimic natural fire disturbances and reduce underbrush and flammable vegetation, which is key to limiting wildfire risk.” Before we started building vacation homes and resorts in the mountains, fire was allowed to run its natural course and do its thing. Now, for instance, when lightening strikes and ignites a fire, the reaction is to snuff it out immediately, lest it damage nearby developments. The most obvious ramification of this practice is that downfall accumulates and provides a dangerous source of fuel for what can evolve into a quickly spreading inferno.read more
Remember those two really nice days last week? We spent them doing field research, seeking signs of spring.
And we found them. The two spring wildflowers that, to us, signify that spring has sprung: the spring beauty and the trout lily. Both are featured in the accompanying video, shot along the banks of the Eno River in both Durham and Orange counties. Our search is also the topic of this week’s GetHiking! Southeast Podcast, which you may find here.read more
On today’s Morning Walk with Joe (Facebook Live, Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings at 8) I talked about being on the cusp of the spring wildflower season. About how last year at this time we were in the midst of the January thaw, with temperatures in the upper 60s under sunny skies, and how that prompted an early debut of the spring beauty and trout lily, in my mind the true first responders of spring. Others may emerge earlier — certain asters and chickweed — but really, it’s the appearance of the spring beauty and trout lily that let you exhale and realize that spring is just around the bend.read more
Usually on Fridays, our GetOut! feature highlights the guided hikes and other outdoor outings for the weekend. But, these being unusual times, there are no guided hikes or other organized outdoor outings. Instead, this week we encourage you to get out and explore your own neighborhood.read more