Finding God, self, and community in wild spaces. The better we know our wild neighbors the more we'll discover ourselves.
A vision informed by Henry David Thoreau’s interpretation of sauntering, Jesus’ understanding of neighbor, Aldo Leopold’s concept of thinking like a mountain, Rachel Carson’s prophetic voice and John Muir’s way of capturing the beauty and uniqueness of wild neighbors with words.

Friday, May 3, 2019

Black Ash Swamp adventure

This morning my friend Ken and I got to do something I think we had both been looking forward to for some time. We explored Black Ash Swamp...all of it!  You'll see in the map attached to this post that we walked the full circumference of it. It is a bit of a hike to get there though. For us it was about a half-mile hike along the very wet and muddy Cross Trail which we picked up from Right Asaph Rd.  One thing to appreciate about Black Ash Swamp is that it is one of the most isolated swamps around. What I experienced at Black Ash Swamp today was the experience of solitude in community, as Ken and I were significantly removed from human community but immersed in the diverse community of wildlife and wild spaces.

It is a special experience indeed, to bear witness to the calls of Canada geese in the open water, of solitary and spotted sandpipers at the water's edge, and of blue-headed vireo's and magnolia warblers among others as their calls sounded forth from the surrounding forest.

A porcupine watched us from its Eastern Hemlock perch as we hiked in, and a great variety of insects, amphibians, and plants were present today filling Black Ash Swamp with their unique qualities and incredible beauty.

Let every created thing give praise to the Lord God, for God issued the command and they came into being; 

Praise the Lord, wind and water, sun and clouds.

Praise the Lord from the earth, you creatures of the swamp.

 Praise the Lord with your laid back character, porcupine, dweller of the trees.



Praise the Lord with your voices, birds of the water, the muck, and the forest.




Praise the Lord you tiniest of creatures, open our eyes to all of your goodness and beauty!


Let them all praise the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, for his name is very great!





(An old beaver dam made either last year or the year prior continues to hold back the water; but no beaver activity is happening at present)

(Ken and I at the edge of the Black Ash Swamp)


(The blue line is the area we walked)


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