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With more states like ours — Maryland and Virginia — joining the “shelter-in-place” club, finding a way to get outdoors but maintain the appropriate social distance is increasingly difficult particularly in urban areas, and the stress of it all can be really draining. There is a wealth of resources to help you get outdoors — albeit virtually — if you cannot easily get to a secluded place to enjoy nature safely. If you want something bold or exotic, try a virtual expedition with a National Geographic Explorer. Even a one-minute “walk in the woods” in silence like the one above in Federica Park on St. Simons Island, Georgia can provide instant relief from our new relative captivity.
Emily Ellison, Executive Director of St. Simons Land Trust said, “There have been times in the last week when, hiking on Land Trust properties, the only sounds I’ve heard are my own footfalls and bird calls. It is a surreal experience to be out in nature, where everything seems as always — the same sun and sky overhead, the familiar smells of pine and marsh, the fetterbush (pictured above) blooming as it always does this time of year — and yet know that so much has changed.” For a peaceful interlude, check out the Land Trust’s series of short walks through Guale Preserve here.
The Wonders of the Last Wild Places in the Ocean
National Geographic’s latest expedition took place earlier this year — they explored the ocean off of the Kawésqar National Park in southern Chile, home to some of the healthiest kelp forests on earth, as well as shallow water colonies of cold-water corals — a unique ecosystem that is extremely important to the functioning of the entire region. Or explore the remote island of Malpelo, a UNESCO World Heritage site off the coast of Columbia, which is recognized as one of the best diving sites in the world with steep walls and underwater caves containing an abundance of marine life. Check out Ascension — a tiny volcanic island created by the collision of remote undersea mountains along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, part of the longest underwater mountain range in the world. There are more than 25 expeditions to experience virtually — and each one is breathtaking and will definitely take you places you would likely never visit otherwise!
Many European cities are known for their impressive walls, but Madrid is taking siege protection to the next level. The city has embarked on a project to build a 75-kilometer urban forest surrounding the city, planting one million new indigenous trees. Madrid’s councilor for the environment and urban development, Mariano Fuentes, says the project will “improve the air quality in the […]
The Amazon River Basin is home to our planet’s largest rainforest: roughly the size of the forty-eight contiguous United States and covers about 40% of the South American continent. While this vast forest has traditionally been a carbon sink, for years scientists have feared that the Amazon could turn into a carbon source instead. A […]
by Amy Lupica, ODP Staff Writer It’s official: the Biden administration has announced it will end large-scale logging in the Tongass National Forest and restore the “roadless rule” that was previously rolled back under Trump. The administration says it will focus its efforts in the Tongass on forest restoration, recreation, and other non-commercial ventures. Officials are now celebrating the […]
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