Thursday, May 21, 2009


I am happy to report to you that the clean-up of the woods surrounding Strack Pond is showing results. I am carefully optimistic that this area, which when I started this blog was badly decimated has shown significant improvement. I would like to thank the "groups" I addressed in earlier posts for being more conscientious, and let them know, I will be watching to see that the improvement continues. In addition, the staff of the Park has responded significantly. Not only did they just complete a sweep of an area I had been concentrating on, there are also now trash cans on the side of the park adjacent to the woods and pond which are helping to stem the tide of littering. Yesterday, I crossed to the other side of the park where there are 500 plus acres of woods and walked the "blue trail" to assess the littering in the deeply wooded area. I am happy to report that I found no significant littering on the trail or its surrounding woods. This gives me great hope that the park can be passed to the next generation in a respectable condition. Today, I will examine the "yellow trail" which I hear from the Urban Rangers has some problem areas. We will see. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Leafing of the Forest

The top story of Forest Park has begun to leaf. Actually, it began slowly about a week ago. Now, the woods have been transformed. When you enter them now, they seem to enclose you almost immediately. The light changes too, which alters your vision. The pond which was so prominent before, now has to be searched out. But, the biggest change to me is the sound. It's as if the leaves have created a sound chamber which at once muffles what enters and reflects what is there. Thus, bird whistles seem to echo through the trees. I urge all who read these words to visit the park. I know for instance, there are many dog owners who have never walked through the woods with their pets, even though they may use the dog run near the woods. Please do your pet and yourself the favor of walking down to the pond together by hiking the trails through the woods. If you love birds, by all means do it. There are woodpeckers, finches, even an egret that visits the pond in the morning. And, best of all, unlike Prospect Park which has a beautiful pond too, the trails surrounding ours aren't paved, and our woods aren't fenced. Come, feel the earth beneath you and the cooling forest over your head.