Trip Ideas

From the Field

Life Abounds at First Landing State Park

by Kenny Fletcher October 14, 2018

With curtains of Spanish moss and bald cypress knees jutting out of tea-colored water, the swamps of First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach seem to come out of another era. In fact, history was made in the dunes, forests, and wetlands lying between the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. In 1607 this was the site of the first landing of English colonists in what is…

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From the Field

The Lion of Anacostia

by Carolyn Black March 6, 2018

Cedar Hill, the former residence of Frederick Douglass and now a national park site, is a distinct historic landscape in the southeast neighborhood of Washington, D.C. The estate sits on eight acres of land high on a hilltop where one gets an excellent view of the Washington skyline.
Frederick Douglass lived at this residence from 1878 until his death in 1895. The house was built between 1855 and 1859 with 6-14 rooms serving as…

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From the Field

Huntley Meadows--The Natural Island in Suburbia

by Kate Grumbles February 8, 2018

I have spent the majority of my 20 years on nature walks, especially along the boardwalk wetland trails of Huntley Meadows Park in the Hybla Valley of Fairfax County, Virginia. Located only 30 minutes from Washington D.C, Huntley Meadows serves as a natural island vacation from the monotonous miles of metropolis. Growing up, whenever my parents felt like we needed an escape, we explored the park’s 1,424-acre spread of forests, meadows, and…

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From the Field

Waterfowl Hunting

by Peter Turcik December 18, 2017

The ground crunches under my boots and becomes a gentle squish as I walk from the frost-covered field to the slightly frozen mud next to the duck blind. Every year I forget that the blind is shorter than I am and bump my head on a beam at the entrance. Maybe I’ll remember next year. I lay down my gun and ammo box, then find my spot and check out my…

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From the Field

Fishing in the Wake of Captain John Smith

by John Page Williams August 28, 2017

Everybody has heard the story about how Captain John Smith and his crew tried to catch fish with a frying pan during their exploration of the Chesapeake in the summer of 1608. The fish were probably menhaden (aka alewives, bunkers, pogies). If you’ve ever tried to get close enough to them to throw a cast net, you know what a poor rig a frying pan would be.

Smith did catch some fish…

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From the Field

Birding at Susquehanna State Park

by Chris Barry July 24, 2017

Near the end of the Susquehanna River, just north of downtown Havre De Grace, MD, sits a pristine, 2639-acre park. Within this park, a wide variety of habitat as well as the funneling effect the river causes to bird migration, makes this spot an incredible location for one of America’s favorite hobbies, birding. Susquehanna State Park offers a wide variety of birding opportunities to a beginner, as well as the experienced…

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