Life & Times

Among the Quabbin’s attractions are beautiful shorelines, miles and miles of old roads to explore and abundant wildlife, much of it not easily alarmed by humans since hunting in the area is mostly prohibited. These pictures were taken at various times last year. Recorder/Paul Franz

Life & Times: Walking the Quabbin

Friday, April 17, 2015

Spring is awakening on the Quabbin. The scent of wet earth, the gentle song of the chickadee and the scream of the bluejay are just a few signs. The trails that dot the north end, many of which are located in or just outside of Franklin County, are still a little wet — you may have to hop a puddle … 0

Taking flight in Charlemont

Friday, April 10, 2015

I stood high in a tree at the edge of a platform, my toes over the edge like a surfer hanging 10, looking out at waves of fall foliage. Then, I took a step forward. Gravity took over, and I began to pick up speed. There was no turning back. Luckily, my full-body … 0

'Aberfan': one woman's elegy for a Welsh village's young disaster victims

Friday, April 3, 2015

Heavy rains had fallen for days on Aberfan, in the Mether Vale district of Wales, in late October 1966. But they’d stopped by the time the young schoolchildren from around the mining village walked to Pantglas Junior School the morning of Friday, Oct. 21. By 9:15, the pupils — the boys in their … 0

Trail Mix: nature activities in western Massachusetts

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Editor’s Note: Listings in Trail Mix are free. Email outdoor@recorder.com. The deadline is Tuesday by 8 a.m. Questions? Call 413-772-0261, ext. 276. Weather may cancel or force the rescheduling of some of these events. Additionally, space is often limited. Please contact organizers to ensure you can attend. This … 0

Between the Rows: Roses without chemicals

Friday, March 13, 2015

One of the things I love about our Annual Rose Viewing is the chance to tell visitors that you do not need an arsenal of chemicals to grow healthy, beautiful roses. I did not always know this. My … 0

Book review: “An Upraised Chalice”

Monday, March 16, 2015

By TINKY WEISBLAT Special to The Recorder “An Upraised Chalice” by Gene O’Neil (ASEMC Press, 268 pages, $15.95) Near the beginning of “An Upraised Chalice,” a clipping from this very newspaper appears. The article reports on a car … 0

Test-tube berries: At Nourse Farms in Whately, a controlled growing environment makes soil obsolete

Friday, March 6, 2015

Emptying a bowl full of fresh strawberries, raspberries and blackberries into the blender, slopping in a spoonful of vanilla yogurt and jabbing the “mix” button with your finger to make that morning smoothie, there’s no way, you may … 0

Winter-into-spring delights

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

By MARY MCCLINTOCK Hooray for above-freezing-during-the-day-below-freezing-at-night temperatures, the definition of maple sugaring weather! It seems like a late start to sugaring season, but hopefully, these conditions will continue so our sugaring neighbors — who are even now trudging through deep snow to tap trees and bring us tasty … 0

Between the Rows: Your own Eden; Master Gardener Spring Symposium March 21

Friday, March 6, 2015

Creating Your Own Eden is the name of this year’s fact- and delight-loaded Western Massachusetts Master Gardener Spring Symposium on Saturday, March 21, at Frontier Regional High School in South Deerfield. I can imagine a garden Eden where … 0

Speaking of Nature: We’re not there yet

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

One of the great joys of childhood is traveling to see your grandparents. When I was a boy, this meant jumping into the family car in Amherst and heading west to Albany. My parents would often pack a … 0

Trail Mix: nature activities in western Massachusetts

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Editor’s Note: Listings in Trail Mix are free. Email outdoor@recorder.com. The deadline is Tuesday by 8 a.m. Questions? Call 413-772-0261, ext. 276. Weather may cancel or force the rescheduling of some of these events. Additionally, space is often … 0

Book review: ‘The Secret History of Wonder Woman’

Friday, March 6, 2015

By TINKY WEISBLAT Special to The Recorder “The Secret History of Wonder Woman” by Jill Lepore (Knopf, 432 pages, $29.95) “The Secret History of Wonder Woman” discusses the genesis and the “life” of the world’s most popular female … 0

Leg work

Friday, February 27, 2015

Growing up an avid alpine skier, I used to watch middle-aged folks mush along the flats on cross-country skis and think “boy, that looks easy.” When I clicked into a pair of cross-country skis earlier this month, I … 0