Hi friends of the North Woods! I am Michaela, one of the North Woods stewards this summer. The past couple of weeks have been busy! We have learned a lot about the North Woods: removing fallen trees, identifying different plants and leading tours. We have also taken some time out to explore the New Lands that were donated to Skidmore. In December 2010, the Roohan family donated land to the college for education and research purposes. Exploring the land was a great opportunity. It is beautiful and has many great view points. A land management plan will be developed by the Campus Sustainability Subcommittee and as North Woods stewards we are crafting a list of recommendations for the subcommittee. During our visit to the New Lands, Kurt Smemo, Assistant Professor in the Environmental Studies and Sciences Program, showed us around. Professor Smemo brings his class to the New Lands regularly for research projects.
Our mission for the day in the New Lands was to explore the property boundaries of this land and clarify the points of interest. Using a Garmin GPS, we were able to create a track of where we walked and created way points of important places.
Walking through the New Lands, we saw many newts, large ferns, and boulders. We also saw ATV/Snowmobile trails, hunting stands, and old campsites. The New Lands has a steep ridge running through the property, which contrasts significantly with the overall flat layout of the North Woods. There are also large rocks that create outcrops in the New Lands, while the North Woods is not very rocky. There were also many patches of raspberry bushes in the New Lands! Exploring both the North Woods and the New Lands is very fun!
Throughout the rest of the summer I hope to continue to develop land use recommendations for the New Lands and explore and learn more about the New Lands and the North Woods!