Back and Forth across Southern New England

After a good long while with no travel, I’m back on the road—this time for a two-week travel-ganza across five New England states. I’m halfway done and figured it was time to post some pics and highlights from the trip so far.

Connecticut, Part 1

We (one of my co-workers joined me for the first part of the trip) started off with a two-day training in Connecticut to help natural resource professionals integrate climate change into their work.

Maria looks at a wall of notes
Me and the large sticky notes I use during just about every training.

Typical of conferences and trainings, we had to spend almost the entire day outside. Fortunately, the weather cooperated one evening and we took a really nice stroll around campus in the spring-like weather.

new england church on hill
A really pretty church on the U-Conn campus.

Then, on our way to Rhode Island, we made sure to stop at Ninigret National Wildlife Refuge to stretch our legs and check out the coast. Also of note in the area near Mystic, Connecticut, is a St. Edmund’s nearly 800-year-old mummified arm. It’s in a beautiful little church in a little retreat center on a little island out in the ocean and sits in a glass case near a number of other relics—which is just a really weird practice.

DSCN0914b
The wind was brutal out at Ninigret National Wildlife Refuge.

Rhode Island

Then, it was off to Rhode Island to meet with partners and visit some field sites. This was absolutely great because I haven’t gotten to spend much time in the woods in southern New England, and I felt like I didn’t know enough during the Connecticut training earlier in the week. , Also, it was my first time to Rhode Island, so I got to cross another state off the list.

It was a great day to be out. It was below freezing, but that was good in that I could often walk on top of the frozen crusty snow. The forests in Rhode Island really reminded me a lot of where I grew up in Wisconsin. In one spot, I felt like I could have been standing in my brother’s woodlot, if only the northeastern pitch pine was replaced with red pine.

I love when I get to be out in the woods on a nice day!
I love when I get to be out in the woods on a nice day!

Connecticut, Part 2

Then it was back to Connecticut for the Connecticut Land Conservation Conference. Juan Martinez of the Children and Nature Network gave a keynote about engaging across different generations—particularly us millennials that are finally getting old enough to have a greater impact on the direction of the world.

wpid-20150321_102415.jpg
I still need to check out his TEDx talk.

Also of note was that yesterday was the International Day of Forests.  Of course I was stuck inside all day and only got to talk and think about forests, but I still celebrated. I “borrowed” a bunch of pins from the New England Forestry Foundation‘s exhibit booth, and then distributed them to the foresters that I knew or met while I was at the conference. Ha!

I *heart* forests pin
I did keep one pin for myself!

Now it’s time to head north for the rest of this trip!

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