Wendell Berry’s Wild Geese

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Recently I posted Mary Oliver’s “Wild Geese.” Today in the mail I received Wendell Berry’s New and Collected Poems, within which I came across his poem, “The Wild Geese,” originally published in 1973 as part of The Country of Marriage.

So, here’s his take. Continue reading “Wendell Berry’s Wild Geese”

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“A Walk in the Woods” Movie Trailer

Bryson walk in the woodsA-Walk-In-The-Woods-PosterBill Bryson’s 1998 “A Walk in the Woods,” which details his interest in and attempt to hike the AT (or at least sections of it) has been adapted for film.

This is terrible news. There are so many reasons why, but I’ll focus on just a few. Continue reading ““A Walk in the Woods” Movie Trailer”

Dolly Sods Wilderness, WV

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Meadow in Dolly Sods

We backpacked in the Dolly Sods Wilderness area in West Virginia last weekend. The Lions Head hike, a 21-mille loop that begins and ends on Forest Road 75, was one I’d wanted to do for some time, and we decided last month that we’d go for it over Memorial Day weekend. As it approached, it seemed the weather forecasters concurred that this was a good weekend to be outdoors. So, apparently, did most of the DC-metro region, and they were at Dolly Sods in droves. College types, casual hikers, some families.

Hikingupward.com, where I got the specs for the hike, rates it a 3 out of 5 for solitude. Obviously my judgment will be skewed by having gone over a long weekend comprised of the best three consecutive weather days in recent memory, but I think the 3 is a bit high. To be fair, the hiking didn’t feel crowded, most of the time, so maybe I’d rate that a 2.5. But the camping! The camping! And the group of yelling guys who decided to set up shop nearby — NOT a 3 out of 5! I’ll be generous and say 1.5. Again, who knows — the entire region was out there.

Continue reading “Dolly Sods Wilderness, WV”

Bird Brain

The first time I was ever intrigued by a bird while walking was when I saw this guy, an indigo bunting, at the end of a trail along Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park.

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Indigo bunting, Shenandoah National Park, late summer 2013

We’d just finished a 10-mile hike that we’d thought would be 8, and while it was a good hike, those last two miles dragged. Whether it was the effect of having wearily slogged through the last two miles, sweatily and steadily uphill, or simply the bright blue color, the sight of this bird perked me up and captured my attention. This, after I’d always thought that bird watchers were a bit…. well, loony, if you’ll excuse the pun.

Continue reading “Bird Brain”