Skiing in the Great Outdoors

Fly Like a Bird!
A Soaring Bald Eagle
I count myself fortunate, I am often times non-reactive to quite a bit of wildlife. I see a bald eagle while clearing snow in my driveway and I hope it does not let a load loose into my eyes, and, at best I consider deer – venison, and at worst a potential insurance & car repair hassle.

The Wisconsin Snow Bunny and myself live in farm country in Northeast Wisconsin, about 25 miles south and a bit west of Green Bay, roughly 40-50 miles straight west of Manitowoc. We live far enough from Appleton it seems like we are in the country but not too far from its conveniences (our tax bill says we live close). Regularly we see turkeys, eagles, hawks, cranes, deer, and the whole range of farm animals.

I see them too regularly when I am at the happy carving grounds. We’ve seen eagles (nearly hit them with the car at times) feeding on dead steers or deer laid near roads, we’ve seen fisher, bear, wolves, coyotes, bobcat tracks, and so on and this is not even close to ski season. Out West you can chance upon grizzly bears, elk, cougar, and other animals

I have a hard time imagining, what it is like to have grown up in Suburbia or even Urbia (well, sorta do), looking out the window and having no expectation of seeing a wild animal. Is not that another great thing about skiing? How many ski resorts are in the middle of Metropolitanus?

A large draw of ski resorts, especially destination resorts, is they have the air of wilderness to them. You see the mountains, you see the terminating pines, you see very few people. You think you are part of the Lewis and Clark expedition up there, but you are not. Nope, you are not, but so what? You can still see lots of wildlife at the ski hill.

Can you recognize it when it is looking at you? It does not have to be big or bold, as most wildlife is not big and bold. Do you know what a black-capped chickadee looks or sounds like? I rarely see them at home, but they are probably the most common bird summer and winter at my happy carving grounds. They are relatively fearless and will flit about warming huts looking for stray crumbs of food.

Even if you do not see any animals great or small, know they are around and be on the lookout. Remember, do not look for the large and the obvious. Most importantly, remember, they call the ski resort home and you do not, be courteous guests!

Good Stuff!

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