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On The Trail

On the Trail: Animal instinct

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A strange, busy week it’s been, spiced by interesting visits, some physical, others mental, maybe even a tad esoteric. We’ll begin with a light little deer caper anyone can get their head around — an unusual encounter that, due to its rarity, will not be soon forgotten — then see if there’s room for anything else. My wildlife encounter occurred on a splendid Monday morning, one of two such bright, … 0

On the Trail: Guinea Gulch is Calling

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

An interesting crosstown trip to the feed store after my morning walk, a behemoth faraway bear, many familiar people, my ears buzzing with swarms of feedback about this and that, all of it pertaining to recent topics aired out right here in this space. Why not a little ramble? No, no, no! Fear … 0

On the Trail: Transitions

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Don’t let this hot summer weather deceive you. Fall is slipping in. I have felt it for a while now, seen it in the swamps, the sumacs. Just this week I spotted a nice, full, bitter but tasty triangular bunch of blue wild grapes, and the sight and scent immediately transported me back some 30 years to an old Williamsburg haunt that was, … 0

On the Trail: Twists and turns

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

It wasn’t the oh-so familiar yet faded scene — a dark, dingy basement classroom in the bowels of UMass’ Bartlett Hall — that left an impression on me. No, no, no! It was the Coppertone man, a long, … 0

On The Trail: Divine intervention, plus

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Cabin fever? Nope, not me. It’s true the dead of winter is upon us, the temperatures frigid indeed. Yet for some reason, it doesn’t seem to matter this year, news swarming like black flies, the brittle carcasses piling … 0

On The Trail: Thought splash

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Yeah, yeah, I know. We’ve all cleaned up from one storm, with another looming large, so the early-week slate’s been wiped clean, the stage reset, so to speak. Yet still, sometimes a man who does what I do … 0

On The Trail: Oxbow island

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The task now confronting me appears at first glance as a steep hill to climb on many levels. Where to start? That’s my first dilemma, because you must understand we’re dealing with a complex subject in a place familiar to few, except maybe by distant observation out the … 0

On the Trail: Fearmongering

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Gripped by the cold, I blinked Wednesday morning. Well, sort of. Nothing serious, mind you. Just that I foolishly decided before testing the elements that I’d feed the dogs, humor them briefly out by the brook, put them in the box stall with fresh water, and forego our … 0

On the Trail: Faraway feedback

Thursday, January 16, 2014

It’s Wednesday morning, sunny and warm. I’m returning from a splendid riverside walk with the dogs when I spot the approach of a young fella I often pass and seldom address, he pushing a covered stroller eastward on … 0

On the Trail: Dire Wolf

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

That cold, sly, crescent sliver of the New Year’s first moon wore the mischievous grin of a city slicker peering down from the deep, twinkling, southern weekend sky. To me, the ominous message was clear: beware the Wolf Moon. Who knew, the wind a howling, that developments were … 0

On The Trail: Debunking myths

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

OK, it’s time to correct the record. Well, let’s just say set it straight as can be expected, because, well, you know, hypotheses can always change. I’m not here to apologize, and have no regrets. No, it’s just that, having read and pondered and listened and spoken to … 0

On The Trail: Lucifer’s loop

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

I’m coming down the homestretch toward my annual December vacation, scurrying to tie up loose ends and button down fall chores on the home front before Thanksgiving while joyously following the dogs daily through alders, cattails and thorny clumps that’ll put a careless man flat on his face … 0

On the Trail: Adjustments

Thursday, November 14, 2013

The grandsons were in town over the weekend and they brought with them a nasty, highly contagious, Vermont elementary school virus my immune system couldn’t fight off. Thus I’m a little under the weather yet maintaining my regular routine, sort of, with the help of Alka-Seltzer Plus cocktails … 0

On The Trail: Deer friend

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Old friend Tom White of Northfield says the time is now for deer hunters to get in the woods, and the man has meat in the freezer to prove it. He took care of the familiar butchering chores Tuesday, intending when I spoke to him on the phone … 0

Time for change

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Two songs: one upbeat, joyous, the fiddle and mandolin giggling; the other foreboding, threatening, the tall stand-up base groaning in distress. I have hesitated for some time to jump into the gun-control fray, but will go there today; for what, I do not know. What do I have … 0