North Cascades

Walk in the Park episode 145 takes us to northwest Washington State, into the rugged, glaciated North Cascades Mountains just south of the Canadian border. I spent a week exploring this area in August 2016, including North Cascades National Park, Okonagan National Forest, and Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.

JWatch this episode on Ithaca, NY cable channel 13, or online right here!

2017 Ithaca channel 13 cablecasts of this episode:

12:30 PM & 9:00 PM Thursday, September 14, 2017

8:30 PM, Friday, September 15

10 AM & 1:30 PM Saturday, September 16

10 AM & 4 PM, Sunday, September 17

11:30 AM & 8 PM Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Walk in the Park is a half-hour public access TV series produced in Ithaca, NY by Tony Ingraham, Owl Gorge Productions.

Six Mile Source

In this episode (#136) of Walk in the Park, we take a two-mile hike at the Finger Lakes Land Trust’s Roy H. Park Preserve and Hammond Hill State Forest in Dryden, looking at the works of beavers and the changing forest near the headwaters of Six Mile Creek, the City of Ithaca’s water supply. But first we swing from a rope on the cliffs of Watkins Glen State Park with one of its “scalers.” And we walk the street in Ithaca’s Streets Alive Festival. And we are pleased to learn of the creation of the Harriet Tubman Home National Historical Park in Auburn. And finally, we look at a few of the trees and wildflowers along the creek in Buttermilk Falls State Park in Ithaca, NY.

You can watch this episode on Ithaca cable channel 13 (and 97.1) beginning 9 PM tonight (Thursday, May 5, 2016) and repeating Saturday and Sunday at 10 AM and finally 8 PM Tuesday, May 10, 2016.

Or you can watch it right here anytime, anywhere!

Walk in the Park is produced by Tony Ingraham, Owl Gorge Productions, for cablecast on public access television in Ithaca, NY, May 5, 2016.

Woods and Waterfalls!

Walk in the Park episode 109. On TV and online here!

Frequent heavy rains have swollen the creeks of the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York and filled our waterfalls to capacity. We look at the big waterfall in Taughannock Falls State Park in Trumansburg, NY on west side of Cayuga Lake, and at Ludlowville Falls in Salmon Creek in Lansing, NY on the east flank of Cayuga Lake. Then we head into the woods at Kingsbury Woods Conservation Area in the Town of Danby south of Ithaca, NY, owned by the Finger Lakes Land Trust, including considering damage from a tornado in 2011. And we watch hikers hurry while drenched in a downpour in Buttermilk Glen along the Gorge Trail in Buttermilk Falls State Park in Ithaca. Finally, we resume our look at “Grand Canyons” across the country, this time going to the Great Gulf Wilderness in White Mountain National Forest in New Hampshire, in the Presidential Range including Mt. Washington, the highest summit in New England.

2017 encore cablecast remaining schedule:

Saturday, July 29,  8 PM

Sunday, July 30, 10 AM and 8:30 PM

Monday, July 31, 6 PM

Walk in the Park episode 109. Produced by Owl Gorge Productions at PEGASYS Studios in Ithaca, NY. Walk in the Park is a weekly local public access TV series. You can see all of our episodes and other videos on our video blog, and see our schedule of cablecasts on Ithaca Time Warner Cable channels 13 & 97.3.
Check out our popular books, ITHACA-the CITY, GORGES, and COLLEGES, and A WALK THROUGH WATKINS GLEN: WATER’S SCULPTURE in STONE.

Hope Comes to Rainbow Falls, Watkins Glen

Walk in the Park episode 104, cablecasting on Ithaca, NY Time Warner Cable channels 13 and 97.3, beginning Thursday, May 21, 2015, 9:00 p.m.; continuing Saturday and Sunday at 10:00 a.m., and finally on Tuesday, May 26, at 8:00 p.m. Or watch it online anytime below!

Capt. James Hope was a 19th century Hudson River School landscape artist, best known for his Civil War paintings, who became the resident artist in Watkins Glen’s famous gorge for twenty years in the late 19th century. His first painting of Rainbow Falls sold for $10,000, a huge sum at the time. We follow his story as part of the larger story of Watkins Glen and the eventual state park. Find out what Mark Twain said about Rainbow Falls in 1871.

We also take a hike in nearby Finger Lakes National Forest, checking out the views, the forest, and some spring wildflowers.

See our richly-illustrated, national-award-winning book, A WALK THROUGH WATKINS GLEN: WATER’S SCULPTURE IN STONE.

January in Parks Across America

Snowshoe hare in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. Photo from the National Park Service.

Snowshoe hare in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. Photo from the National Park Service.

This time (episode 95), we’ll look at early winter in parks across the United States, from New England to Florida to the desert Southwest to Alaska, and of course, right here in Ithaca, NY. Snow-covered peaks, steaming lakes, wildlife, a dog sled,  mountain lions, and much more. The Adirondacks, the White Mountains of New Hampshire, the Catskill Mountains, the Rocky Mountains, Saguaro National Park near Tucson, AZ, the upper Mississippi River, and Denali National Park in Alaska, and many other places.

You can watch it beginning tonight (Thursday, 1/15/15) at 9:00 on Ithaca, NY’s public access cable channels 13 and 97.3. It will repeat on both Saturday and Sunday at 10:00 AM, and the final cablecast is scheduled for next Tuesday, January 20, at 8:00 PM.

OR YOU CAN WATCH IT RIGHT HERE ANYTIME!

See the schedule for all public access TV shows in the Ithaca, NY area.

Saving Our Hemlock Forests

In episode 70 of Walk in the Park, we look at the attack by an invasive insect on our eastern hemlock trees in our forests and gorges and we find out what is being done in response. The schedule for cablecasts is below, along with the show online. And see the appeal for volunteers below!

This eastern hemlock tree at Robert H. Treman State Park in Ithaca, NY is infested with the hemlock woolly adelgid and has been marked for possible treatment. The needles on the branches in the canopy of the tree are already heavily thinned.  If all the needles and twigs die, the tree will die. Hemlock trees are an important ecological and aesthetic component in our forests, particularly in our gorges.

This eastern hemlock tree at Robert H. Treman State Park in Ithaca, NY is infested with the hemlock woolly adelgid and has been marked for possible treatment. The needles on the branches in the canopy of the tree are already heavily thinned. If all the needles and twigs die, the tree will die. Hemlock trees are an important ecological and aesthetic component in our forests, particularly in our gorges.

We join Cornell forest entomologist Mark Whitmore in the Six Mile Creek Natural Area in the City of Ithaca, NY, in the watershed for the water supply for the city. Mark explains and illustrates how the hemlock woolly adelgid, an aphid-like invasive insect, is killing the hemlock, a “keystone species” in our forests, and what larger impacts this has in our forest and stream ecosystems. But it’s not hopeless. Mark explains the biological controls that are being implemented to save at least some of our trees and set the stage for our forests’ recovery from this disaster over the long term. See how YOU CAN HELP below.

We wrap up the show with two short, beautiful videos of Taughannock Falls this winter and last.

This episode of the show will be cablecast beginning tonight (Thursday, February 26, 2015) at 9:00 on PEGASYS public access television channels 13 and 97.3 in the Ithaca area; and it will repeat on Saturday and Sunday (3/22-23) at 10:00 a.m. and the last scheduled cablecast will be next Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. Or, you can watch it anytime ONLINE right here!

Note from 2/26/15 from Cayuga Lake Watershed Network: “Learn more about Hemlock Wooly Adelgid at a workshop/hike this Sunday March 1, from 12-2 at the Cayuga Nature Center (small entrance fee), or attend our Wells College campus workshop (free) on March 12 from 1-4 pm (rescheduled). Contact steward@cayugalake.org for more information.” https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cayuga-Lake-Watershed-Network/101436081850?fref=ts

For more information about hemlock woolly adelgid, emerald ash borer, and other invasive species threats to our lands, forests, and waters, please go to the New York Invasive Species Clearinghouse.

Gorge Tree Killer!

Walk in the Park TV episode 61

In the past few years, an alien invader has arrived in our forests in the Finger Lakes region, particularly in our gorges, and has begun to kill the eastern hemlock, one of our most beautiful species of trees. The culprit? A tiny, aphid-like insect called the “hemlock woolly adelgid.” It’s been found in Robert H. Treman State Park, it’s at Taughannock Falls, at Cornell Plantations, in Watkins Glen State Park, and at other sites.

This eastern hemlock tree at Robert H. Treman State Park in Ithaca, NY is infested with the hemlock woolly adelgid and has been marked for possible treatment. The needles on the branches in the canopy of the tree are already heavily thinned. If all the needles and twigs die, the tree will die. Hemlock trees are an important ecological and aesthetic component of our forests, particularly in our gorges.

In this show, we join Mark Whitmore, forest entomologist at Cornell University, and the Cayuga Lake Watershed Network to look for this deadly invader from Asia in the Sixmile Creek Natural Area. Will we find it? What can be done about it? See the show to find out!

You can watch the show in the Ithaca, NY area on public access cable TV channel 13 (or 97.3). The first showing is tonight, Thursday, November 14, 2013 at 9:00. See the full schedule of showings.

Or watch it right here!

For more information on this and other invasive species in New York State, please visit the New York Invasive Species Clearinghouse website.

And, by the way, our popular book, ITHACA–THE CITY, GORGES, AND COLLEGES, is now out as an ebook. Check out the sample pages!

A Thought on Indigenous Peoples Day

I was pondering last night the history of European American views toward living with nature, which have been dominated by mountain man and hermit images. Even Thoreau’s cabin seems somewhat like that (though it was just a 2-year retreat), or Anne LaBastille’s cabin in the Adirondacks. Not to say that there is no value to seeking solitude in the wilds to get closer to our true selves and nature.

What has been less common has been images of society living in harmony with nature; that comes harder to us, though we try. That’s one of the things I appreciate about indigenous American peoples, where both harmony with nature and mutually supportive and sharing community are integrated and seamless. Our society as a whole is mostly out of sync with that, as the behavior of our large corporations painfully and dangerously exhibits.

The old survival of the fittest model was dominated by thoughts of individuals surviving in nature, whereas our survival utterly depends on the social group. Hermits die off alone.

Joseph Knowles, depicted in his adventure in the Maine woods

A century ago, Bostonian Joseph Knowles did much to feed the myth of individual self-sufficiency in nature with his well-publicized naked walk off into the Maine woods.

Land Trust Preserves and Monarch Butterflies

New England aster wildflower, Ellis Hollow Nature Preserve, Finger Lakes Land Trust, near Ithaca, NY in the Town of Dryden

New England aster at the entrance to the Ellis Hollow Nature Preserve near Ithaca, NY.

In episode 58 of Walk in the Park TV, we visit two Finger Lakes Land Trust Nature Preserves: Ellis Hollow Preserve in the Cascadilla Creek watershed east of Ithaca, NY and the Baldwin Tract of the Roy H. Park Preserve in the upper Sixmile Creek watershed between Dryden, NY and Slaterville Springs and next to Hammond Hill. While there, we take a close look at a monarch butterfly and consider its life cycle and reasons for its serious recent decline.

Watch this episode this week on Ithaca’s public access cable TV channel 13 (or 97.3) at the following schedule, or right here online!

Finger Lakes Land Trust Preserve and Trail Dedication

Episode 49 of Walk in the Park TV features the Finger Lakes Land Trust’s dedication of new lands, and a trail and boardwalk (“Howard’s Walk”) at the Roy H. Park Preserve in the Town of Dryden east of Ithaca, NY. Cablecasts continue on Ithaca, NY’s public access cable channel 13 this Saturday and Sunday at 10:30 a.m., and next Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. And, of course, you can watch it online below.

Finger Lakes Land Trust preserve, Tompkins County, Finger Lakes, NY

Roy H. Park Preserve of the Finger Lakes Land Trust in the Town of Dryden, NY. Photo courtesy of Finger Lakes Land Trust

“This diverse, scenic, and inviting 217-acre preserve is a short drive from Ithaca, on the back roads of Dryden, and encompasses portions of an extensive forest, rolling meadows, wetlands, a rugged stretch of Six-Mile Creek along its headwaters. The preserve borders Yellow Barn State Forest, Hammond Hill State Forest, and the Cornell Old 600 Natural Area, making it an important connector in a larger array of some 8,000 acres of protected lands. The preserve adds another gem to the “Emerald Necklace,” the Land Trust’s initiative to create a continuous crescent of 50,000 acres of protected lands around Ithaca, and is the first major protected land linkage achieved under that initiative.” (See web page)

Roy H. Park Preserve of the Finger Lakes Land Trust east of Ithaca, NY and next to Hammond Hill State Forest of New York DEC, in the Town of Dryden.

New boardwalk dedicated on May 31, 2013, part of "Howard's Walk" at the Roy H. Park Preserve of the Finger Lakes Land Trust and Hammond Hill State Forest.

Our show features remarks by Andy Zepp, Executive Director of the Finger Lakes Land Trust, Martha Robertson, Chair of the Tompkins County Legislature, Ken Lynch, Director of Region 7 of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), and Mary Ann Sumner, Town of Dryden Supervisor.

Waterfall at Buttermilk Falls State Park, Ithaca, NY

Buttermilk Falls State Park

The show continues with photos and video of the beauty of water in a gorge (Buttermilk Falls State Park), and the Cayuga Nation Picnic, part of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign this year.

Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign Cayuga Lake canoe paddlers at the Cayuga Nation Picnic

Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign Cayuga Lake canoe paddlers at the Cayuga Nation Picnic

And now, the show!

See all my episodes of Walk in the Park TV.