A Magical Wintery Morning

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

December 1st, Sunday morning at 7:30 – Misty rain was falling across most of the county, but in the higher elevations of northernmost Oakland County, snow was winning out over the hail pellets that bounced off my porch railings. Chickadees and Downy Woodpeckers switched into a feeding frenzy mode at my window feeder in response to my offering of sunflower seeds. They were restless and so was I. I am an unabashed partisan of hiking in almost any weather, even when others would rather stay home. With that thought in mind, I called a friend who would likely be up for an early morning snowy adventure. Forty-five minutes later we were en route on back roads through a world of swirling white to the Lost Lake Nature Preserve, a 537-acre sanctuary that encompasses sections of Oakland County’s Holly Township and Genesee County’s Grand Blanc Township. It first opened to the public in the fall of 2015 and I had been there three times since then, but always as an attendee at official events sponsored by Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy (SMLC) and never in wintery weather. Continue reading

Travel Back in Time at the 2018 Michigan Renaissance Festival

Hear ye, hear ye! The Michigan Renaissance Festival (Ren Fest) is returning once again to Holly, Michigan. Back for the 39th year, the Ren Fest is known for being one of Oakland County’s most unique annual festivals. Riveting jousts, colorful costumes, and delicious turkey legs are just a few things you can look forward to. The festival celebrates the end of medieval times in a fantasy world setting and is open weekends and Labor Day, beginning August 18th through September 30th. Go back in time and experience the magic of the Renaissance! 

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Hiking the “Hiker T. Moose”

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

Hiker T. Moose, that’s the name of a trail, not a moose that hikes. This was my destination on the wilder side of Oakland County two weeks ago under a quiet gray sky, a scene enlivened by serenading songbirds birds, the emergence of woodland wildflowers, and the overhead flight of Sandhill Cranes. Almost six years had passed since my last trek on that oddly named trail and back then my exploration was on cross-country skis. On that day the shoreline of the Shiawassee River was laced in ice and all but obscured in swirling snows. And just like back then, there were no encounters with moose this time either along that meandering portal to nature’s way known as the “Hiker T. Moose” trail.

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Lost Lake Nature Preserve: One Preserve, Two Counties, An Autumn Hike

 WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

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“To those devoid of imagination, a blank place on the map is a useless waste; to others, the most valuable part.” Aldo Leopold.

Leopold is widely acknowledged as the father of wildlife conservation in America. Those words from his timeless classic, A Sand County Almanac, were first published in 1949, one year after Leopold died while fighting a fast moving grass fire on his neighbor’s property.

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