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On The Trail

On the Trail: Humdinger

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

I remember well the wry grin worn by last week’s new crescent moon slouching east and facing west in the southern sky. I now know that sly, waxing sliver of amber energy building toward next week’s full Snow-Moon climax brought with it winter fury … and local suspense. It’s true old witch Mother Nature spared us the deep, swirling, drifting snows our neighbors to the east grappled with. But she … 0

On the Trail: Cougar Spatz

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Oh no. Not again. Of course, I should have known better. Doesn’t cougar chatter always draw feedback? Sometimes from faraway places you’d never imagine? Although, really, I can’t claim this one came out of the clear blue. No. In fact, I had given thought of hitting this man with an email after fielding the suspicious telephone report of five cougars crossing Route 116 … 0

On The Trail: No way?

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

It never ceases to amaze me how, whenever I write about cougars, emails come flying at me, reporting local sightings or curious discoveries that could be the work of cougars. Last week was no different: first, a deer hunter who explores Mt. Toby’s deepest reaches, then a woman who lives and grew up in Sunderland, and finally, another lady who lives in Greenfield … 1

On The Trail: Attic treasure

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Whew! This prehistory stuff is attacking like rogue waves, one after another — wild, powerful and quite exciting. No, I’m not bellyaching. I won’t allow this stubborn winter that’s clinging with a white-knuckled grip to get me down … 0

On The Trail: Whims & whispers

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

I should know better than to read Henry Miller. The bad-boy American novelist disrupts a guarded spot in me that likes to be roiled, ignited to a tumultuous boil, furious bubbles bursting through the surface into a belching, … 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