Award-winning nature author Jerry Dennis reveals the splendor and beauty of North America's Great Lakes in this "masterwork"* history and memoir of the essential environmental and economical region shared by the United States and Canada.
No bodies of water compare to the Great Lakes. Superior is the largest lake on earth, and together all five contain a fifth of the world's supply of standing fresh water. Their ten thousand miles of shoreline border eight states and a Canadian province and are longer than the entire Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the United States. Their surface area of 95,000 square miles is greater than New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island combined. People who have never visited them--who have never seen a squall roar across Superior or the horizon stretch unbroken across Michigan or Huron--have no idea how big they are. They are so vast that they dominate much of the geography, climate, and history of North America, affecting the lives of tens of millions of people.
The Living Great Lakes: Searching for the Heart of the Inland Seas is the definitive book about the history, nature, and science of these remarkable lakes at the heart of North America. From the geological forces that formed them and the industrial atrocities that nearly destroyed them, to the greatest environmental success stories of our time, Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Ontario are portrayed in all their complexity.
A Michigan native, Jerry Dennis also shares his memories of a lifetime on or near the lakes, including a six-week voyage as a crewmember on a tallmasted schooner. On his travels, he collected more stories of the lakes through the eyes of biologists, fishermen, sailors, and others he befriended while hiking the area's beaches and islands.
Through storms and fog, on remote shores and city waterfronts, Dennis explores the five Great Lakes in all seasons and moods and discovers that they and their connecting waters--including the Erie Canal, the Hudson River, and the East Coast from New York to Maine--offer a surprising and bountiful view of America. The result is a meditation on nature and our place in the world, a discussion and cautionary tale about the future of water resources, and a celebration of a place that is both fragile and robust, diverse, rich in history and wildlife, often misunderstood, and worthy of our attention.
"This is history at its best and adventure richly described."--*Doug Stanton, author of In Harm's Way: The Sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of Its Survivors and 12 Strong: The Declassified True Story of the Horse Soldiers
Sigurd Olson Nature Writing Award Winner
Winner of Best Book of 2003 by the Outdoor Writers Association of America
In the evocative words of one of America's best-loved nature writers, Wilderness Days brings together the essence of the magnificent wilderness with which he so deeply identifies. Sigurd F. Olson collects from his writings those moments that most vividly depict the turn of the seasons in the great woodlands and waters of the legendary Quetico-Superior region overlapping the Ontario-Minnesota border.
More games, crafts and skills Forest School style, building on the success of Play the Forest School Way. This book is organized by season to encourage kids to get outdoors come rain, shine or snowFollowing on from the bestselling Play the Forest School Way, here is a brilliant selection of brand-new games, crafts and activities to get kids developing new skills and exploring the natural world all year round. Structured around the four seasons of the year, each chapter is packed full of step-by-step Forest School games and activities that harmonize with the weather and what's happening in nature at that time of year, with a nod to seasonal festivals such as Easter and Christmas. In spring, for example, you could make a mud birthday cake to celebrate Earth Day on 22 April, or (inspired by bird song) craft sistrums from sticks and bottle tops, or make a clay hare and enjoy dandelion tea and a chocolate egg hunt at a spring day out. At Forest School, children return to the same location again and again, building a lasting connection with a specific part of the natural world, and this book in its year-round approach will bring this aspect of Forest School play to the fore. Each of the four seasonal chapters includes a description of an extended session (combining active and quieter activities plus, for some, an idea for foraging/cooking) to guide Forest School leaders planning themed days and parents looking for party inspiration or nature days out.
The Forest School ethos of nature-based play and learning that encourages children to develop confidence, self-esteem and emotional intelligence is exactly what's needed in an era when childhood problems such as obesity and anxiety are on the rise. Woven through the year are stories from the authors' own Forest School classes, as they make a passionate case for the importance of ensuring children's access to nature and the incredible benefits they will gain from being outside, even in the heart of a city.
From the award-winning author of The Song of the Dodo comes a collection of essays in which various weird and wonderful aspects of nature are examined. From tales of vegetarian piranha fish and voiceless dogs to the scientific search for the genes that threaten to destroy the cheetah, Quammen captures the natural world with precision. A distinguished natural science essayist, Quammen's reporting is masterful and thought provoking and his curiosity and fascination with the world of living things is infectious.
The true colors of our planet are revealed, from the striped tulip fields of Holland to the vivid turquoise lakes in Iceland to the green swirl of a plankton super bloom attracting a marine feeding frenzy. Whether it's the world's largest beaver dam--so remote it was discovered only through satellite imagery--or newly formed islands born from volcanic eruptions, you'll discover new perspectives with every image.
Sigurd F. Olson (1899-1982) was one of the greatest environmentalists of the twentieth century. A conservation activist and popular writer, Olson introduced a generation of readers to the importance of wilderness. He served as president of the Wilderness Society and the National Parks Association and as a consultant to the federal government on wilderness preservation and ecological problems. He earned many honors, including the highest possible from the Sierra Club, National Wildlife Federation, and Izaak Walton League.
Olson is perhaps best known, though, for his many books that express the wonder, awe, and peace he found in the wilderness, including the nature classics The Singing Wilderness, Listening Point, and Reflections from the North Country. While these books have greatly influenced subsequent environmentalist movements and writers such as Annie Dillard and Barry Lopez, a major portion of Olson's wilderness writing-much of it originating as speeches-has been relatively inaccessible, scattered in a number of magazines and obscure books over a period of more than fifty years, or never published at all.
The Meaning of Wilderness gathers together the most important of Sigurd Olson's articles and speeches, making them available for the first time. The book also contains an introduction and chapter-by-chapter commentary by Olson's authorized biographer, David Backes, that help the reader discover the various facets of Olson's wilderness philosophy and their development over time. A lively look at the evolution of one of environmentalism's greatest figures, The Meaning of Wilderness will be essential reading for Olson fans, historians, and outdoors people around the country.
In the late 1800s, John Muir made several trips to the pristine, relatively unexplored territory of Alaska, irresistibly drawn to its awe-inspiring glaciers and its wild menagerie of bears, bald eagles, wolves, and whales. Half-poet and half-geologist, he recorded his experiences and reflections in Travels in Alaska, a work he was in the process of completing at the time of his death in 1914. As Edward Hoagland writes in his Introduction, "A century and a quarter later, we are reading Muir's] account because there in the glorious fiords . . . he is at our elbow, nudging us along, prompting us to understand that heaven is on earth--is the Earth--and rapture is the sensible response wherever a clear line of sight remains."This Modern Library Paperback Classic includes photographs from the original 1915 edition.
First published in 1949 and praised in The New York Times Book Review as "a trenchant book, full of vigor and bite," A Sand County Almanac combines some of the finest nature writing since Thoreau with an outspoken and highly ethical regard for America's relationship to the land.Written with an unparalleled understanding of the ways of nature, the book includes a section on the monthly changes of the Wisconsin countryside; another part that gathers informal pieces written by Leopold over a forty-year period as he traveled through the woodlands of Wisconsin, Iowa, Arizona, Sonora, Oregon, Manitoba, and elsewhere; and a final section in which Leopold addresses the philosophical issues involved in wildlife conservation. As the forerunner of such important books as Annie Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, Edward Abbey's Desert Solitaire, and Robert Finch's The Primal Place, this classic work remains as relevant today as it was forty years ago.