The Real World

Every weekday Suzie leaves her apartment in Pittsburgh, carries a load of professional cargo down to the car and starts a long commute across a distance of about five and a half miles. Running, this would take some of us about 45 minutes to complete and that’s often how long it takes to drive. The […]

Read more "The Real World"

Excursia

It was a near disaster – a blizzard of epic proportions. My little hometown just east of the Pittsburgh metro area was covered in over two inches of snow! There were school cancellations and a lot of grown-ups calling in to work, I’m sure. There hasn’t been a lot of snow this year so two […]

Read more "Excursia"

Signs of Life

Winter is certainly here now in western Pennsylvania, though the season took a long time making up its mind this year. We ice fishermen are still waiting (most of us, at least). The woods has taken on the stillness and quiet that accompanies shorter days and long and frigid nights.     The forest takes […]

Read more "Signs of Life"

Plunge of the Polar Bear (Do it with good form and you too could stay alive this winter!)

Maybe it’s the solitude. Maybe it’s the adventure. Maybe it’s the stark simplicity. Maybe it’s because of all of these but it’s certain that I love to drop baited lines through holes in the ice. I do so as much as winter temperatures allow, frozen lakes remaining always a prerequisite. In southwestern Pennsylvania there are […]

Read more "Plunge of the Polar Bear (Do it with good form and you too could stay alive this winter!)"

Utopia in the Marshes (Waters of the United States Rule slips below the surface.)

Well, here it is: the most controversial thing I will write this year. Let’s get on with it.     The response to rescission of the Obama-era Waters of the U.S. rule seems nearly uniform among outdoor and conservation minded individuals, something akin to a scowling Thunberg reprimanding, “How dare you!” Now what stands between […]

Read more "Utopia in the Marshes (Waters of the United States Rule slips below the surface.)"

2020 – Just Getting Warmed Up

Early January outings portend well for the year ahead. My best guess is that this year will be a good one for finding new places to pursue fish, an excellent 12 months of finding flourishing wildlife and an unprecedented period of learning about the fungi of the Pennsylvania forest. Anyone who’s read this ongoing account […]

Read more "2020 – Just Getting Warmed Up"

The Land of the Living

I can look around the forest and field of Westmoreland County and I can see environmental devastation. I can see fragmented forest that’s a dim reflection of the primeval Seventeenth Century canopy. I can see bright orange streams, tainted for decades by the arteries of acidic water ruptured during the heyday of deep bituminous coal […]

Read more "The Land of the Living"

Trail Life

    The trails of the world be countless, and most of the trails be tried; You tread on the heels of the many, till you come where the ways divide; And one lies safe in the sunlight, and the other is dreary and wan, Yet you look aslant at the Lone Trail, and the […]

Read more "Trail Life"

When Elephants Run Wild

“You libtards need to go get jobs, grow up and quit whining about global warming!,” expressed one veteran Facebooker succinctly. “Maybe you need to grow a brain, quit denying science and move out of Kentucky,” replied his equally irate interlocutor, hollering from just across the ideological rift and winding down a rapid–fire IM fusillade. It […]

Read more "When Elephants Run Wild"