Hike & Go Seek – Gandy Dancer Trial

The Gandy Dancer State Trail is a 98 mile recreational trail spanning through Wisconsin and Minnesota. The trail is managed by Polk, Burnett, and Douglas County in Wisconsin and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in Minnesota.

The trail follows the old Minneapolis, St. Paul and Sault Ste. Marie railroad grade from St. Croix Falls to Superior. The trail is divided up into a north and south segment with the southern segment accounting for 47 miles all in Wisconsin and the northern segment accounting for 51 miles in both Minnesota and Wisconsin.  The Ice Age Trail follows the Gandy Dancer State Trail for 19 miles from St. Croix Falls past the town of Luck.




A gandy dancer was a slang term used for American railroad workers that would build and maintain tracks by hand. The term likely originated from the Gandy Manufacturing Company based in Chicago which produced railroad tools. These workers were known to sing and keep their voices and feet in unison which led to them being described as dancers. In 1990 a naming contest was held for the naming of the trail. The name Gandy Dancer was chosen to honor the railroad workers who built the tracks. (wiki)



Trekking The National Parks: The Family Board Game (Second Edition)

Trekking the National Parks Family Board Game.

Wild Light

Wild Light

Wild Light

Wild Light is a gorgeous hardcover coffee table book celebrating Rocky Mountain National Park. It represents a decade of effort exploring and photographing this unique wilderness. The result is a work of stunning beauty that will capture your heart and make you feel at one with the mountains.

Join photographer Erik Stensland on a journey into the heart of Rocky Mountain National Park and experience its wild beauty.

It’s hard to say which I enjoyed more – the beautiful photography or the wonderful text. This book is much more than just a collection of pretty pictures. It’s informational and yet highly personal at the same time. Stensland’s love for the park is clear on every page. Not only does he present an insider’s view on the park but also how the park has changed him. The book is organized around the park’s regions, ecosystems, seasons, wildlife and human history of the park (and the changing role of the NPS). Stensland touches on more than just the beauty of the park, but also on deeper themes such as why we should care about – and why we need – places of beauty and wilderness and how they speak to our humanity. His goal is not so much to provide a documentary of the park but to allow us share in the wonder and magic of his experiences. Whether you’re a regular visitor to RMNP or reading about the park from a distance, this book draws you into the heart and essence of this special place. (amazon)

There are lots of beautiful places on this planet–so many, in fact, that no one will ever be able to see them all. Wild Light brings the best of Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park into your home and makes you wish it could do the opposite instead and transport you into the wilderness. Mr. Stensland, who resides near the park, spends hundreds of days and thousands of hours every year hiking to remote destinations in RMNP in an effort to be present when all the ideal conditions come together to create moments of magic. Sometimes that means hiking ten miles to the same spot over and over again until everything is just right. Those moments, which he solemnly captures, are presented in this magnificent book. The quality of the photography, from lighting to composition to imagination, is outstanding. The book itself is divided into sections based upon park geography. For those who have visited, this approach makes sense because different regions of the park do actually vary considerably. Each section contains dozens of magnificent scenes. Mountains, streams, waterfalls, wildflowers, forests, trees, and wildlife all make appearances and combine to offer something for every reader — (amazon)

Wild Light


Nature’s Silent Message

Natures Silent Secret

“The Earth is trying to teach us to live better. To lead richer, happier lives.” Nature’s Silent Message.       Just released last month by Scott Stillman.

Nature’s Silent Message

Will we continue down the limited path of the mechanical mind?

Or will we tune into ultimate intelligence? The same intelligence that allows blood to flow through our veins, bees to pollinate flowers, birds to fly south, salmon to spawn, whales to migrate, caterpillars to become butterflies, the Earth to rotate, the moon to orbit, and the rest of nature to function perfectly of its own accord?

We have access to nature’s silent message—if we take the time to listen.

In this spellbinding collection, Stillman guides us from the lush forests of the North Cascades, through the sandstone slot canyons of Utah, and into the border country of extreme southern Arizona. In this classroom, we learn not from books, nor words, nor lectures. Wilderness is the school of life, where we learn not from that which thinks—but that which knows.

Nature’s Silent Message suggests the existence of something far greater than what we see on the surface. It’s about breaking through old patterns so that new ones may emerge.

The message is simple and pure, but when you try to define it, it vanishes into thin air. And in that vanishing, you find it again. Like a beautiful butterfly that can never be caught. Try and catch her and she’ll drive you mad, eluding you forever. But learn to fly with her, and all the wonders of the world will be shown, and all the answers to your questions be known.

Get it now.    Nature’s Silent Message