In Praise of Accidental Parks

My book begins on a long official hiking trail (one of the longest) but ends with a protagonist who wanders off to find his own trails through the wildest places, no longer hoping to find a path blazed for himself.

The places I value most are the ones I found myself. I begin with a map and work outward from there. It may be my libertarian streak but I don’t wait for the government (or anyone else) to tell me where to recreate and explore. The natural world is just too big, diverse and dynamic a place for that – difficult for bureaucracy or cartographers to keep up. And I simply jump in and discover because that’s what I love to do; being directed to the right places would simply defeat the purpose.

The pictures I’ll share today represent a fraction of my explorations, mostly right here in Pennsylvania. And the really amazing thing is that the more I explore, the more I find there is still needing to be explored. None of these photos come from official parks. Find your own parks.

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