exploring our amazing natural spaces

Archive for January, 2012

Making do

Our unpredictable winter hasn’t allowed for much classic ski trail grooming. There’s not enough snow base to pack the trail AND lay the tracks. The grooves created by a pop up fish house pulled across the lake did provide the opportunity to ski around a bit during a quick lunch trip to Square Lake Regional Park in Washington County.

Spring in January

I spotted these confirmations of a warm winter while hiking county land recently and even heard a confused frog peeping in a wetland area there too.

Frost imitates life

Morning sun through the oaks in the backyard frosts a silhouette onto the window of an unheated porch…yeah you’re right it’s probably just a coincidence.

Out for a ski

Because of our dry winter and warm temps cross country skiing has been hard to come here in the metro. Green Acres makes their own snow and grooms for both classic and skate skiing. Needless to say it’s a popular place right now.

St Croix river near Afton Minnesota

Just a few days ago I walked south from Afton accessing the river at Steamboat Park. The ice here is very dynamic with water flowing into the St Croix from small creeks and of course under the ice all the time. It’s a good idea to stay near the shore and DRY land.

Cracks get filled in from water flowing up from under the ice and refreezing in layers creating a banding effect almost like an agate.

Crystals form at open water areas (see misting background) and float in the air before landing on the frozen ice…like scattered chicken feathers.

Initial Post January 24, 2012

Prairie grasses at sunset Sept-2011

The goal of this blog is to encourage YOU to get outside and experience Minnesota’s great outdoor places. Yes it’s the land of 10,000 lakes and I won’t minimize how much fun it is to be out on the water. But! In addition to our amazing water resources we are blessed with readily accessible parks, trails and non lake waterways to search out and explore. So get outside and see what there is to see, I promise you won’t be disappointed. And while you’re at it take along your partner, a friend, a kid…heck whoever because Minnesota’s outdoors are even better when shared with someone else.