Thursday, September 23, 2021

2021 venture vermont: do at least 2 hours of volunteering

 oh, i laugh.

i'm just going to go and give myself a pass on this one.

let's start here: i work as a volunteer naturalist for the girl scouts of the green and white mountains, and in that capacity i was over two hours by the time we got to dinnertime on the first day of staff training.

past that, i worked four weeks full time as camp staff doing camp and naturalisty things.

past that, i am the land steward on the sarah holbrook floodplain forest in the town of bolton, where i live.

and past THAT, i was appointed to the conservation commission in the town of bolton.

there are no photos of me doing that, but it's a matter of public record.

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

2021venture vermont: Attend a state park interpretive program

 i always love to do this anyway, since i live kinda close to little river state park, and because brian, the interpreter, is very knowledgeable.

i have never been to one of his programs without i learn something, even if families with small children are in attendance and he has to present to a level appropriate for kids.

barb and i wanted to go to the dragon fly program, but then i noticed mushrooms were on the same day and these days i'm into mycology so we made a whole day of it and went to both.

i got to see species i'd never seen before and learned field marks for species i'd seen but couldn't conclusively identify.

brian, man. he is great.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

2021 venture vermont: Visit a ‘new to you’ VT state park

 couple of weeks ago - last week? ionno.

anyway, barb had reservations at coolidge state park, where i've never been.we stayed at the park, drove around some towns to do 251 related things, and went to the coolidge historical site. i had been to the gravesite, but not to the plymouth notch things. 

all the things.

because apparently if a building existed when calvin coolidge lived there, it has been preserved.

Monday, September 20, 2021

2021 venture vermont: Go river tubing

 barb and i went up to little river to go to a couple of brian's interpretive programs, which are always wonderful, because brian is awesome.

and when we were done it was like four o'clock in the afternoon and barb said sure, let's go tubing on the river.

so we had to go back to my house to get the tubes and change into swimwear, yeah, it's late in the day and about 65 degrees out, but sure.

it was awesome.

we had the river to ourselves outside of the one fisherman in chest waders and a puffy jacket.

took us about an hour and a half, and then we went to get cheeseburgers.

Friday, September 17, 2021

2021 venture vermont: hike to a waterfall

 used to be i would plan a camping trip and then call barb up and see if she wanted to come and it would be way too much trouble but sometimes she'd come and always if she came she'd have a good time.

so all of a sudden barb's all like "i'm going camping and i hope you can come"

so this ONE weekend she decides to go camping and i ask her what kind of camping she wants to do and she's like LET'S GO BACKPACKING. i know, right? car camping or canoe camping was on the slate and barb was all hot to go off for her first backpacking off trail up into the came;'s hump state forest and i had some research to do up there, so yay! there are a lot of areas in CHSP where you can't camp because they're too high up or too close to the long trail or whatever, but if you plan ahead and map your control points, you can do just fine.

two nights. we were out three days and two nights and our total distance traveled was under five miles. a lot of it was bushwhacking on hard terrain, but we also weren't in any special hurry.

anyway, on day three in the afternoon we arrived at THE CASCADES, a lovely waterfall and sometimes popular swimming hole. so while we had not sought to hike TO this waterfall, we did walk over the mountain and off trail for two days to get to it.

it happened to be a control point on our way out.

we sat on the ground and had a snack and changed socks and refilled our water and i have never been so happy to see any little waterfall in my life. because below the falls, there's a trail. and we picked up our packs and walked on down it to the parking.

Thursday, September 16, 2021

2021 venture vermont: Donate to your local food bank

 my local grocery store always provides the opportunity to round up to the nearest dollar for the food bank, and that raised about $10,000 last year.

i always round up.

sometimes i buy one of these coupons that lets me make a little more of a donation.

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

2021 venture vermont: Put together a picnic lunch using local ingredients

 barb and i were down in coolidge state park and instead of having to be responsible adults who bring their own food, we decided to check this off on the list.

so we went to the tyson store and bought a plymouth cheese and then we went to the honey festival in proctorsville, where we bought some honey kombuchas, smoked cheese,  some maple smoked sausage bites. and a jar of pickled eggs.

then we went to the cavendish town green by the phineas gage monument and sat on the grass to eat it.

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

2021 venture vermont: hike a trail you've never done before

 barb and i walked the section of long trail between the bolton canoe launch and the footbridge parking on route two, which with the exception of the portion that goes through the sara holbrook town forest, i had never been on. 

back in my long trail hiking days, the trail cam right down robbins mountain and into jonesville, so it was nice to see where the trail goes now. some of how it comes down camel's hump is still a mystery to me on the south side of river road.

and it turns out that all that bottomland with the pastured animals is actually part of camel's hump state park (according to the ANR atlas) which totally makes sense in terms of why a chicken would let hikers walk through the pastures, but if the land is leased from the state park, it makes sense.

anyway, here i am on one of the stiles.

Monday, September 13, 2021

2021 venture vermont: play a game outside

 i was camping this weekend with barb at coolidge state park and before we left the park we went up to the meadow by the picnic pavilion and had a little lunch and played a game of similo, which is a clever cooperative card game that i enjoy very much. you can play it in both the card game and an online version that plays just the same.

i bought it because the animal decks are a good way to talk with kids about characteristics of animals, so that fit in well with my naturalist work.

Thursday, September 09, 2021

2021 venture vermont: Make a camp lantern out of a clear water jug and a headlamp

 barb and i went down to new jersey to see the brood x cicadas and we made some lanterns out of water jugs, which was very handy on the picnic table in our campsite.

we stayed at turkey swamp campground, which is a monmouth county campground and it is lovely.

Wednesday, September 08, 2021

2021 venture vermont: Sign up for iNaturalist and use it to find or ID a species new to you

 well, the signing up part isn't a thing anymore, because i LIVE on that app.

but i did identify a whole bunch of new (to me) species this year!

here is the bicolor bolete, baorangia bicolor, which is a new taxon erected in 2015, so my BIG MUSHROOM BOOK doesn't cover it.

Sunday, September 05, 2021

2021 Venture Vermont: Go to your local farmers market and treat yourself to a fresh and delicious snack

 saturday barb and i went to the caterpillar lab at north branch nature center, which kind of fantastic.

and since we were in montpelier, we went to the farmers' market to pick up some lovely lunch and for me a quart of plums. 

we ate our lunch on the statehouse lawn, and then kind of accidentally fell in with a group of people who had some self-guided tour videos of the statehouse and they invited us to join, so there we were.


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