“…On you will go,
though the weather be foul.
On you will go,
though your enemies prowl.
On you will go,
though the Hakken-Kraks howl.
Onward up many a frightening creek,
though your arms may get sore
and your sneakers may leak.
On and on you will hike,
and I know you’ll hike far
and face up to your problems,
whatever they are.
You’ll get mixed up,
of course, as you already know.
You’ll get mixed up with many
strange birds as you go.
So be sure when you step,
step with care and great tact
And remember that
Life’s a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be
dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot
with your left.
And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)”
– Dr. Seuss

Photo submitted by Mike Guthrie near the Balsams and Middle Prong Wilderness (Mike shared that this was a very challenging and wet hike which made the colors even more brilliant); quote submitted by both Ben Jones and Marie Flowe-Dawson

“In the woods, too, a man casts off his years, as the snake its slough, and at what period soever of life is always a child. In the woods is perpetual youth.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature.

Photo submitted by Jerry Barker of a family enjoying time together on the MST near Falls Lake

“I have always been more interested in the relationship between landscape and individual lives, and how the places we inhabit shape the people we are.”
– Robert McFarlane “The Old Ways”

Join us at 7 pm, Thursday April 21 on our Facebook page for a live concert by Shay Martin Lovette, an MST-section hiker and musician. Much of his music is inspired by his time in nature and on trails.  Watch a recording of the concert here. 

“When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief.
I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light. For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.”
– Wendell Berry

Photo by Steph Jeffries of Jones Lake State Park, quote submitted by Lynn Padgett

“Nature has been for me, for as long as I remember, a source of solace, inspiration, adventure, and delight; a home, a teacher, a companion.”

– Lorraine Anderson, “Sisters of Earth: Women’s Prose and Poetry About Nature”

Staff photo by Ted Richardson/The News & Observer