We re-established trail on the south side of the creek at Cabin Run, adding signs and other improvements to the existing trail so that we once again truly have a loop trail. Additional trail is being built to take the vantage point offered by the powerline cut.
To celebrate spring, the new trails, our members and volunteers, we are having a month-long celebration. As part of this celebration, we will have a special hike for children with hidden gnomes and fairies for them to find. Visit our mailbox by the picnic shelter for a map with images of the gnomes and fairies. These are located throughout the area near the river, where the hiking is relatively easy for shorter legs. While there, be sure to also enjoy the spring wildflowers! The statues will only be out for the month of May, though if this prove popular, we may do it again. Hike is free of charge.
Also in May, we are having a photo competition. Entry fee is $5, which can be mailed to us or submitted via PayPal. Take a photo at Luke Chute - or any of our other properties - and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to win one of our prizes. Categories include: 1) wildlife; 2) plants and fungi; 3) landscape; 4) people enjoying nature and 5) action shots. Prizes are listed on our Facebook page and include nature-themed face masks, free membership for one year, upcycled bags by Elin, and others. Please let us know in the email which category or categories your photos should be entered in. Prizes will be announced the first week of June, so make sure to submit by May 31st.
Also in May, we will be having an iNaturalist competition. Entry is also $5, same as the photo competition. If you aren't familiar with iNaturalist, it is a free app available for Android and iPhone that lets you log observations of plants, animals, and fungi. iNaturalist also helps you to identify the things you see, by just taking a photo with your phone and uploading it to their website. iNaturalist automatically logs the GPS coordinates of your observation and if it is within our properties will add it to our project. Why do this? Well, iNaturalist data helps us to learn about the flora and fauna on our properties and allows us to document the conservation value of our properties. Prizes will be awarded to the person who logs the most new observations (previously undocumented species) in the categories of 1) plants; 2) invertebrate animals; 3) vertebrate animals; and 4) fungi. Prizes include nature-themed face masks (because, unfortunately, those aren't going away soon, I'm afraid), a one year membership, upcycled bags by Elin, and others. See our Facebook page or iNaturalist.org for more information.