Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Sunday, October 28, 2007
Friday, October 26, 2007
Thursday, October 25, 2007
For a number of reasons children are losing this contact with the outdoors. Electronic toys, parents' fears, and a too-structured lifestyle are just some of the reasons. He says that the increase in childhood obesity, increased ADD, and the increase of stressed children are just some of the consequences. In part he blamed his own profession, journalism, for creating a climate of fear by magnifying all the dangers out there, that results in many families keeping their children under house arrest.
He cited a number of initiatives and programs to get children back outdoors. Although he says it's unlikely we will ever go back to the days of letting children roam free, we have to make sure children have that connection to the outdoors that all people need.
He really connected to this audience of foresters. Just about all of us had our special outdoor place growing up. Most of us still have one today. He did inspire all of us to try harder to find ways to work with children. That will be good for them and good for the profession of forestry.
Here is a link to Louv's web page and a link to his books in Google search.
Louv did a book signing later in the day. There was a huge line, over a hundred people I guess, waiting. The SAF shop even sold out of the book.
Another new tool is a brand new website interface for the FIA national forest inventory data. Previously, we had to wait for the inventory reports to come out in book form. Now the Forest Service has created a modern interface to zero in on the forestry statistics even down to the local data. fiatools.fs.fed.us The people demonstrating the site told me it just came on line last week. The help files aren't even up yet. It will be fun to learn.
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Friday, October 19, 2007
Sunday, October 07, 2007
Originally uploaded by P_Linehan.
This stack of old railroad ties I found next to an exhibit of a restored railroad caboose in Norlo Park in Guilford township, Pa. The ties reminded me of how important creosote preservation was for the railroad and almost all other outdoor uses of wood.
Of course creosote, a type of oil, is very toxic. It also leaked from the wood creating even more hazards. The sites of creosote factories are Superfund waste sites. For example, the old creosote plant in Pensacola, FL was a massive cleanup headache. Fortunately, we have other ways to preserve wood. Railroad ties are often made from other materials. we should never forget about the imoprtance of creosote, though.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Gates also has his own photo gallery with some amazing shots, many from the watchtower.
There are fewer and fewer manned lookouts (only 800 left) around as the US Forest Service and State Forest Services go to modern technologies. It takes a special person to endure living there. But I'm sure there are advantages to having a pair of human eyes watching the skyline for fires.
Many forest technology students want to work fighting fires. Not so many would want to work in a fire tower I think.