What's Your Nature?

Become a Nature Up North explorer to share your encounters with wild things and wild places in New York's North Country. Post your wildlife sighting, favorite trails, great place for locally-grown foods and even your events.

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The majority of our day would be dedicated towards building a quinzhee, or shelter made by hollowing out a pile of settled snow, that will be able to fit ten full grown adults. We pack a couple tarps into our packs, strap on our snowshoes, then grab the shovels and make our way into Glenmeal State Forest.

It’s easy to assume in winter that the snow and sub-zero temperatures keep the animals at bay, and that branches free of leaves have nothing to offer the observer. But as we discovered this week, there actually is a whole lot going on despite the freeze. Already, buds have appeared on the trees, tiny dry seeds of the spring’s leafy green canopy. These are unique for every tree; for example, an American Beech has long, yellowish-tan buds with...

Warm gear, check. Snowshoes, check. Lunches, check. Field journals, check. We have all the necessary gear we need to brave the cold for several hours in the woods before making our way back to home base, but what about the animals that thrive in the cold all winter? As college students we take for granted our ability to walk to the dining hall for food to sustain our energy and brain power. So how do the predators and prey of the woods...

This winter Nature Up North is featuring a Winter Ecology Series, in which St. Lawrence University students in Dr. Karl McKnight's Winter Ecology course share their observations from a weekly field trip to Glenmeal State Forest in Pierrepont. We hope you enjoy their accounts from days spent in the woods examining the fascinating ways plants and animals endure the North Country winter.

It will be news to no one that we’ve have some cold days lately – not your average winter chill, but the bitter, biting cold that makes you cough immediately upon breathing outdoor air. The good news is that warmer weather is on the way and the recent snow has opened up a whole world of outdoor winter recreation opportunities.

With the holidays upon us, ‘tis the season to revisit the great Christmas tree debate:  real vs. artificial?  According to the American Christmas Tree Association, 80% of American Christmas tree buyers chose artificial trees in 2013.  But did they make the greenest choice?  Turns out it’s complicated.  Artificial trees last longer, but most are made from unrecyclable, petroleum-based plastics that do not biodegrade.

The Perseid meteor shower peaked this weekend; unfortunately, the Moon was full this weekend (more on that in a minute), so it will obscure all but the brightest meteors.

Hey NoCo...

What is your favorite thing to do outside? There are a million and one things to do outdoors in the North Country. We couldn’t think of a million, but here are 15 ways folks at the Canton Farmer’s Market like to spend their time in the great outdoors. So what are you waiting for? Turn off that computer screen and go explore!

Not everyone agrees that smartphones have a place in the outdoors. For me, the trick is to use smartphone apps in the outdoors that will enhance the experience, not to become the experience.

Nature Up North is a community-based organization that is mobilizing to get northern New Yorkers outdoors and experiencing nature. This website is a place for you to share your experiences in the natural world through keen observation, artistic inspiration and scientific data collection. As Nature Up North continues to grow this will also be a space where you can access a variety of resources to aid your exploration of the North Country and all it has to offer.
It's just our Nature. What's yours?