Sunday, April 25, 2010

Using modern Technology to hone weather prediction skill

Being able to predict incoming weather is an important part of any outdoor living study. Accurate forecasting means not only safety but reduce calories expended putting up tools, covering unfinished shelters, insulating objects, etc. Here's something you can do to build that skill from the comfort of a modern home with TV or internet capability.
There are certain things to look for. In Boy Scouts we used to learn what clouds represented different weather phenomenon, and everyone has heard the old saying, "Red sky at night sailors delight - red sky in morning, sailors warning." Well, at least I have, but then again I'm a sailor. More than once have I put an unsuspecting student on alert by pointing out some irrelevant, or well concealed hint in the forest about weather. By the time he figures out it was a joke he'll be able to predict the weather himself! HA! There are many folk tales of similar wisdom passed down, just as there are natural objects that flux and change with weather. Pine cones, leaves, bird behavior, animals in general, wind, blur forming around stars, moon rings, and more. However, putting these things to work accurately, as a beginner, can be frustrating and perhaps dangerous. Try this instead.
Take a look at your regional weather map. Study it and learn to read it as you would any other map. Learn about the fronts, depressions, high pressure zones, and how each affects incoming 'weather'. Then go outside. Don't even try to make connections just simply observe. Do this as often as possible. In the mountains listening to the actual forecast is about as good as rolling dice with a different weather event on each side, but the maps are great. Pay special attention when a storm is approaching. Watch the skies when clearing is in your local future. Watch the birds, your dog, any older animals you have (maybe you!), watch the trees, and listen with your heart to what the mountains/nature around you are speaking anytime certain weather events approach.

Over time you will start sounding like my grandpa; "Well, looks like a rain comin in directly." Or you may even start scurrying around like a squirrel pulling tarps, throwing things in cars, and sticking the lawn mower out of the weather, calling out with great anxiety, "We only have about 10 minutes before she opens up!" HAHA! Or perhaps you can lay down at night, comfy on the soft grass of a highland meadow while everyone else is busy staking a tent and say, "Naa. The stars don't call for rain tonight." That's my kind of astrology.
For hands on practice at reading weather sign in nature sign up for a scout camp this summer - dates and details on SCHEDULE page!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

support local Boy Scouts of America

BSA has been ordered to pay $18.5 million for damages associated with an incident between a scout leader and a boy in the early 1980's.  While no incident of abusing a child, in any form, is acceptable, punishing the entire organization and setting the precedent for future heavy claims suits damages one of our nation's greatest tools for young boys and men. 

As is seen often within any organization where adults work with children, including public schools, it is difficult to impossible to screen every threat out of the system.  It is equally difficult to prevent incidents when Boy Scouts are sued for addressing gender/orientation issues with adults who work with boys.  In short, Boy Scouts of America remain under attack from within the political sphere due to the moral direction of the association as a whole.  Drive on boys!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Solar Workshop

Solar Power on a Budget / Spring Plants
Saturday 1May2010, 9:30am - 3:30pm
I will be going through basic solar systems with students; PV array, wiring, batteries, charge controllers, and inverters (various types), as well as Li-Ion batteries for appliances and converting items to rechargeable systems.
In the afternoon we will take a walk identifying Spring edibles, hazards, and preparation techniques.  Plants will be common at all of S. Appalachia.
Cost, $35 for whole class.
Bring your own lunch.
Directions upon varification of attendance!  More details on Facebook page.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Stalkin in. Nice north wind to cover sound in dry woods. What a great turkey season so far. Tom dead ahead 70 yards.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Spring plants to find

Facebook members suggested the following for study this early spring as wild edibles; I have certainly been getting to as many as I can this year, what a beautiful Spring in southern Appalachia.

Blueberry parts, sochan, young poke salad, ramps, spring lettuce, chickweed, dandelion, violets, branch lettuce / creases, mustards, cress, rock tripe, burdock, and thistles, usnea, Basswood shoots! (fav)

Join us on Facebook by looking for Land of the Sky Wilderness!

Great Strides 2010

LOTS Wilderness supports team Nadia Denise in the great strides 2010 walk for cystic fibrosis.  Please consider joining the walk or donating any amount of money - $5 fine!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Bloodroot flowers up on the mountain this morning. What will be next? Whats coming up first where you are? Phone text update!