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April 18, 2014
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After a few milder than normal winters, this winter has been an eye opener for many people; it has been cold with very few breaks and the wood pile that was slightly more than half used through last winter is now down to the last few logs of the last row. Spring officially arrived on March 20 this year, but as I write this column, it is 24 degrees and the wind is gusting up to 40 mph.

Learn about forest landowner projects on guided tour

MILFORD, PA — Grey Towers National Historic Site will hold a driving tour on Saturday, June 15 of privately owned forested properties located within the Upper Delaware River Basin in northeast Pennsylvania.

Learn how participation in the Common Waters Fund helps landowners conserve and manage their forests. Learn how healthy forests in this region provide clean drinking water for more than 15 million people downstream and how the health and existence of these forests are threatened by the pressures of development.  Read more

Guided hike to explore Mongaup River Trail

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — Park Rangers Susie Kaspar and Josh Poston will host a guided hike of the Mongaup River Trail on June 15 at 10:30 a.m. This two-mile linear trail provides a moderate hike with abundant opportunities to view eagles, wildlife and waterfowl.

Wear sturdy shoes or hiking boots, bring plenty of water, snacks, sunglasses, bug spray, binoculars, as well as a hat. The hike is free and is for the young as well as the experienced hiker.  Read more

Summer outdoor programs at Varden

VARDEN, PA — Varden Conservation Area (VCA) will hold two environmental education programs before the end of June.

The first will be a bluebird walk on Thursday, June 20. Gather at 5:30 p.m. at the Western Wayne Middle School parking lot. The Bluebird Trail at VCA has bluebird boxes that are monitored weekly. The hike will use Wildcat Trail to access Bluebird Trail, and at each box participants can find baby birds. The 1.5-mile hike is easy to moderate.  Read more

Workshop on geocaching at PPL

HAWLEY, PA — Kevin “CaptainMath” DeVizia of the Tri-State Geocachers will present “Thanks for the cache!” a geocaching workshop, on Saturday, June 8 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at PPL Wallenpaupack Environmental Learning Center.

Join DeVizia for a session introducing the sport of geocaching, the fast-growing hobby in which you use a handheld GPS device or a smartphone to find hidden containers called “geocaches.”  Read more

‘Get Outdoors Day’ events

GREENTOWN, PA — On Saturday, June 8, Promised Land State Park staff and the Leave-No-Trace Traveling Trainers from Boulder, CO will host a daylong series of programs.

From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., meet the visiting Leave-No-Trace trainers and park staff at the tables near the food concession in the Day Use Area.

Introduction to Kayaking Session 1 will be held from 1 to 2 p.m. at the Day Use Beach Area, and Session 2 from 2 to 3 p.m. Usage fee is $5 to borrow the park’s kayaks, or bring your own kayak or canoe. Join Carissa Longo, environmental education specialist, to learn how to paddle.  Read more

Owl boxes support wildlife and education

LIBERTY, NY — After taking a substantial cut from the county budget, Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) Sullivan County put out an emergency appeal to its supporters. Many people came forward with monetary donations, offers to volunteer, and most recently an offer to build screech owl boxes to sell.  Read more

Native Plants Walk in Pike County

DINGMANS FERRY, PA — Join the Delaware Highlands Conservancy for a native plants walk on Saturday, June 8 at the Beaver Run Hunting and Fishing Club property from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Renowned author and botanist Dr. Ann Rhoads will lead the walk and discuss native plants and their habitats.  Read more

Pocono waterfall tour

HAWLEY, PA — In celebration of National Trails Day, join naturalist Sue Thompson for a day-tour of the area’s waterfalls on Saturday, June 1 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Meet at and return to PPL Wallenpaupack Environmental Learning Center.

Learn about the history, flora and fauna of these sites. Trails to falls will be easy to moderate walks. Wear hiking shoes/boots. Bring picnic lunch. Fee is $5 for adults and $3 for children ages five to 12. Registration required. Call 570/253-4006.

Cicada mania at PEEC

DINGMAN’S FERRY, PA — As the ground warms, periodical cicadas that have spent the last 17 years underground will emerge and take to the skies. On Saturday, June 1, the Pocono Environmental Education Center (PEEC) will hold a program focusing on these insects. The class will be from 1 to 3 p.m. and the cost is $5 per person.  Read more

Park service seeks volunteers to be watershed stewards

UPPER DELAWARE RIVER VALLEY — Building off a program that began in 2012 in cooperation with the Catskill Regional Invasive Species Partnership (CRISP), Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River is looking to recruit volunteers to be Watershed Stewards for the 2013 visitor season from Memorial Day through Labor Day.  Read more

Celebrate National Trails Day with a hike of the Tusten Mountain Trail

NARROWSBURG, NY — Celebrate National Trails Day by joining Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River Park Rangers on Saturday, June 1 at 10:30 a.m. for an informative guided hike on the Tusten Mountain Trail. This free hike will meet at the Tusten Mountain Trail head, which is located at the Ten Mile River Access on Crawford Road.  Read more

Warbler watch in woodland

DELAWARE STATE FOREST, PA — The Pike/Monroe Woodland Owners Group Program will hold an outing on Saturday, May 18 in Delaware State Forest.

The program will focus on Golden Winged Warbler habitat, which is disappearing, and on early successional forest management. Learn about how to create this habitat on your property and how to seek out federal funding to help with the process. Bring binoculars. To register, email miroche@pa.gov or call 570/656-6672 for directions.

Frog Slog at Varden Conservation Area

VARDEN, PA — Varden Conservation Area (VCA) will hold a “frog slog,” one of the area’s environmental education programs, on Thursday, May 23 at 5:30 p.m. starting at the pavilion at the Tannery Access. Join Carissa Longo, environmental education specialist, on a hunt for frogs and salamanders at wetland locations in VCA.

Hopefully, we’ll catch sight of the amazing spotted salamander, find eggs and maybe find some fairy shrimp. The program will start under the pavilion with an introduction to amphibian identification and frog calls. Dress to get muddy and wear waders or water shoes.  Read more

Grey Towers hosts May programs

MILFORD, PA — A walk in the gardens, a walk in the woods and a walk through town are special programs being offered this May by the U.S. Forest Service at Grey Towers.  Read more

Youth participate in Long Beards turkey hunt

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — Sixteen Xtreme JAKES (Juniors Acquiring Knowledge Ethics and Sportsmanship) between the ages of 12 and 15 participated in a weekend turkey hunt contest sponsored by the Sullivan County Long Beards (SCLB), on April 20 and 21.  Read more

Boating safety course offered

HAWLEY, PA — A free basic boating safety course will be offered on Saturday, May 4 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. or Saturday, June 29 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the PPL Wallenpaupack Environmental Learning Center.

The presenter is Waterways Conservation Officer Bob Plumb, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission. Event is open to all ages. Registration is required; call 570/253-7001 or email pplpreserves@pplweb.com.

2013 Delaware River Sojourn announced

DELAWARE RIVER VALLEY — Registration is open for the 19th annual Delaware River Sojourn, a guided paddling excursion with interpretive programs and camping, taking place June 22 through 29. This year’s theme is “Our Remarkable River.”

Participants can sign up for the entire eight-day trip or for the day(s) of their choice. Daily trips range from six to 10 miles.  Read more

Discover migrating spring birds in Shelly Nature Preserve

THOMPSON, PA — Florence Shelly Wetlands Preserve will host its two annual bird walks on May 11 and May 18. Dedicated birders and curious amateurs alike will explore the woods, fields and wetlands of the 400-acre preserve as they identify birds by sight and song.

On Saturday, May 11 at 6 a.m., Ron Milliken will present his 26th annual walk in the preserve. Especially popular among birders, this walk focuses on migratory birds. The excursion often lasts the entire morning and covers a wide area of the preserve.  Read more

Annual river rescue training planned

BARRYVILLE, NY — The National Canoe Safety Patrol (NCSP) will conduct its annual Swiftwater Rescue Training on the Upper Delaware River at Luke’s Landing, the Kittitinny/Barryville, NY base on Friday, May 3 through Sunday, May 5.

“This is a great opportunity for high school and college students to gain experience working with a federal agency (the National Park Service) and a volunteer organization (NCSP) to provide a public service” stated the Upper Delaware’s National Park Service Superintendent Sean McGuiness.  Read more

Bass and minnow stocking program

LIBERTY, NY — The Sullivan County Soil and Water Conservation District will hold its annual Bass and Minnow Fish Stocking Program in June. If your pond has excessive vegetation, you may want to consider grass carp. To stock your pond with largemouth bass, fathead minnows, or grass carp, call 845/292-6552 to request an order form and price list. Orders will be accepted until Thursday, June 20. Pick-up is on Saturday, June 29 between 10 and 11 a.m. at the Cornell Cooperative Extension building, 64 Ferndale–Loomis Rd. Email lisaschick@liberty.twcbc.com.