I was recently asked to serve as a board member for Earthtouch a not for profit nature preserve in Southeastern Ohio in the Hocking Hills area on about 380 acres of protected woodlands. There are two patches of land with beaver ponds, prairies, creeks and woodlands.
After doing some initial research on the organization and property, I knew immediately that I wanted to visit and get a feel for the land. I invited some of my favorite partners in crime to come along on the road trip – Kate, Paul, Bear, Gust and Callie. I thought they would help keep me from getting lost. Well, at least that was the intent. We got lost anyway but had a great mud filled adventure!
The boys were very excited to be out of the car and able to run around exploring with Callie.
Big smiles from Kate and Paul!
Flora and fauna pictures:
Contrasting colors of the white snow on the dark wood of the tree.
We saw this brightly colored fungus in several places but it really stands out against the wood. There is also some green grass peaking through the winter brown hinting at the upcoming spring.
More fungus pictures but I really like the colors.
I like the interesting pattern on the leaf of this plant.
Moss covered tree located next to one of the streams.
This picture brings images to mind of the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico at the mouth of the Mississippi River due to pesticide runoff from agriculture. I also think of the story about Mesopotamia from the book Topsoil and Civilization. This book was published in 1974 and is now out of print but I discovered it on a top 10 book list about the importance of healthy soil. I’ll probably do a whole post about the importance of topsoil at some point and this book because I find it very interesting. Feel free to borrow my book if anyone is interested in reading it.
One of the things that I would like to do is a little property clean up. We found tires on site and someone seemed to use the yellow 5 gallon buckets as a guide to trails or something similar. If you are interested in a camping/clean up adventure, let me know.
The boys were troopers on our several hour hike but towards the end mom and dad gave the boys a lift back to the car.
It’s entirely possible that this was the best day of Callie’s life to date. She had a great time running around with no leash and finding new smells. She loved it!
Feel free to reach out to me and visit the Earthtouch website if you are interested in visiting the property or have programming ideas that will connect people and nature.
The first board meeting is next week. I’m looking forward to meeting other members and learning more about Earthtouch. I’m sure there will be more posts to come!