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Solving Problems with Nature - Naturally

Certified Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Author - Wildlife Lecturer - Wildlife Photographer
Non-Lethal Control of Bats since 1983

NH Nature

New Hampshire Nature Notes by Eric Orff

Friday 04/04/2008 My first smell of spring was this week.

Oh that first smell of sweet spring so fills the senses with thoughts of long warm days to come. For me that first smell for 2008 came Tuesday night while I was on an evening hike into Bear Brook State Park. My neighbor and life-long friend Rick and I headed out for a hike with our two shorthairs just after dark. There are still only spots of bare ground here and there in the park and mostly on the slopes. The day had climbed close to the 60 degree notch, a number not seen since last October. Even the hard packed snow machine trail we walked on was loose with corn snow in spot, then spots with slick ice made all the worse with a coating of melt water.

The clouds of the day were slowly dispersing as the patches of stars to the west grew bigger and bigger into the night. How the stars shined in the crystal clear sky above. I could hear the whine of a turbo jet engine on a helicopter practicing night maneuvers in the distance in the park. Suddenly there was a bright flash that neither Rick of I could figure out where it came from. Gradually the flashes could be detected off to the west. A lightening storm was approaching. So we climber a hill under a set of power lines to get a better view of its approach. Far off to the west a thick layer of clouds silhouetted by the flashes of light crept towards us.

Nearly ever step up the incline brought warmer and warmer temperatures as it was now nearly 10:00pm. It was on a grassy knoll that the first whiff of spring puffed my way in a gently pre-storm breeze. Finally a half hour later the lightening was closing in with thunderous booms accompanying the flashes. We descended from our perch and reached my truck for the short drive home just as the heavens let loose with a thunderous roar of pitched rain. Though the storm was short lived, the visions of it marching steadily towards me into the night will remain etched in my memory. I love a stormy night.


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2008-03-27 Spring really is here!

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2008-04-16 A sole spotted salamander and wood frogs quaking in Concord.

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