Big Blue Lake Update

It’s been a while since I posted a simple Big Blue Lake update. For those who need a reminder, we built our retirement home (December 2015) on a four-acre pond/lake in northern Alabama’s Tennessee River Valley near Huntsville. Ours is the largest of a string of three bodies of water. We chose the lot because […]

Harnessing Nature’s Wisdom and Power

This morning (May 5, 2018) Positively-Positive, a global website with more than a million subscribers, posted a pilot essay I had submitted for their consideration: http://www.positivelypositive.com/…/positive-living-by-har…/ I am actively seeking to spread the gospel of Nature-Inspired Learning and Leading. This is a positive step! Note: That’s not me standing atop the hill in silhouette — […]

The Fire Tower at Monte Sano

Human history and Natural history are inseparable. We humans are not interlopers on this third rock from the sun. We are not invaders. We are residents… native to Earth. We are here because this is home — because this is the place that spawned us. There is not humanity and Nature. There is simply Nature… […]

Land Trust Fanning and Sugar Tree Trails

Eleven of us hiked April 9, 2018 from the Fanning Trail head at the Nazarene Church, connected to the Sugar Tree Trail across the highway at Blevins Gap, and dropped to the lower end of Sugar Tree to the two vehicles three of our colleagues had parked that morning. We climbed the Fanning to about […]

Announcing the Birth!

I devote most of these Great Blue Heron blog posts this time of year to experiences in the woods and reflections regarding spring wildflowers. This one is avian-oriented. Its been a banner week for our feathered friends right here on Big Blue Lake… and nearby. Killdeer Success Last year our killdeer tenets did not nest […]

Monte Sano State Park North Plat Loop Trail

Thursday March 22 we made our first ever visit to Monte Sano State Park, on the plateau just east of Huntsville, Alabama. It won’t be our last. We circuited the North Plateau Trail, a roughly 1.5 mile counter-clockwise loop (yes, we could just as easily have gone clockwise). We began at the overlook on the […]

Newsom Sink Spring Wildflower Jubilee

I hiked with a small group of Nature enthusiasts April 2, 2018 (Barbara Roberts, Lisa Hopkins, John and Barbara Kammerud, and Jim Kirkwood). We parked along a winding road in Morgan County, Union Grove, Alabama perhaps six miles south of the Tennessee River, and onto the plateau. We had ascended to 1,200 feet, then began […]

Northern Alabama Landtrust Hike

On Monday March 26, 2018, I joined a LearningQUEST hikers group (seven of us) at the Landtrust Hikers Lot on Bankhead. We hiked the Bluffline and Wagon Trails to the Waterline Trail and then returned on the Tollgate Trail. A wonderful 4-5-mile circuit with six new friends: Bruce Martin; Sue Campbell; Bob Schorr; Ronda Tenney; […]

Visiting a Prospective Forestland Legacy Story Property

March 12 dawned with snow flurries here in northern Alabama. Thunderstorms accompanied a passing cold front the evening before, triggering wind warnings and a small hail alert as it passed. I measured two-thirds of an inch of rain. I departed 7:00 AM to visit with a landowner and his consulting forester (a former Union Camp […]

Spring’s Richness

Judy and I visited Cane Creek Canyon Nature Preserve March 15 — see my March 20, 2018 post for a more general narrative about the Preserve and my impressions. See also my March 26 post for the wonderful examples of life Finding a Place on some seemingly precarious and marginal positions across the 1.25 square […]

Finding a Place

My February 22, 2018 Great Blue Heron post reports on our February 11, hike at Konza Prairie near Manhattan, KS (http://stevejonesgbh.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=1752&action=edit). Among other sights of the day, I reflected on a prairie crab apple anchored happily (my view) on a limestone ledge: I ruminated at depth on the conditions, advantages, and pitfalls associated with its […]

Cane Creek Canyon Preserve

Beware the Ides of March — good advice perhaps for Caesar, but the warning did not apply to Judy and me. We drove 75 miles west to Cane Creek Canyon Preserve, arriving at Jim and Faye Lacefield’s Preserve entry home at 10:00 AM, right on schedule. Our day had dawned at 25 degrees, and already […]