November Nature Walk Project

November Nature Walk Project

As the winter approaches, the temperatures have dropped significantly here in Central Oregon. This makes it hard to remain enthusiastic about getting outside for my daily walk. I did purchase a pair of winter boots to help keep my feet warm and dry on my outdoor excursions.

All I needed now was some motivation.

Then it came to me! Create a daily challenge to walk to the river.

I am such a creature of habit and I know making myself put those new winter boots on and get out the door every day would soon be something I looked forward to doing.  So, I started on the first of November and have so far kept my determination to take the short walk down from my back door to the Little Deschutes River every day.

I chose a spot to take a daily photo, showing the changes and conditions each day. It is just a few paces down from the back fence and it faces towards Paulina Peak centered between two trees and centered over a stump.

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November 1st- just a typical autumn day

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November 2nd – this was a weather transition day and there were quite a few gray clouds and it was getting cold

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November 3rd- woke to a few inches of snow and we took our first snowy walk out to the river.

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November 4th- a lot of the snow had melted but the weeds were still crunchy with ice and the river was getting icy on top.

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November 5th- Back to a snowy landscape…the most snow we have had to date. We were out on our walk and it started to snow with large amazing flakes. Note: I forgot to take my traditional “over the stump” photo so this one will have to do!

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November 6th-  The sun came out in the afternoon and I ventured out with our Kona dog. What a joyous walk! If only every day were this brilliant.

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November 7th-  Still a little snow on the ground and the air temperatures never left the 30′s. The Kona dog and I took our romp down to the river’s edge, noted how cold the water looked today and then rushed home to warm up.

The value of a daily nature walk, even in the same place every time, is something I hope you can experience in your family. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate affair or take very much time for you to see a difference in your attitude and that of your children. The fresh air does wonders for blowing away the cobwebs of an indoor life.

Here a few nature walk ideas from my archives:

No Technology Walk

Use Your Senses Nature Walk

Members here on the Handbook of Nature Study have access to newsletters with nature walk ideas:

October 2013 – This whole edition is filled with nature walk ideas.

December 2016 – You will find the “3 Questions Hike” idea in this edition.

Weeds, Seeds, and Myrmecochory

Harvester Ants Myrmecochory

Photo credit: Bob Forester

Myrmecochory -Here’s a link to learn more!

In a nutshell, it means seed dispersal by ants.

Ants harvesting seeds

Photo Credit: gailhampshire

I came across the interesting term while doing some research on seed dispersal. It always amazes me to learn about things going on right under my nose that I never noticed.

You can do your own research and use the printable in the member’s library to record your interesting facts.

Myrmecochory Notebook Page

Are you familiar with the Ultimate Naturalist Library membership? If not, you can read about it on this page: Membership Information.

The Ultimate and Journey level memberships include access to the growing list of printable notebooking pages and activities. I add new things each month!

Printables for Members Button

Click above to see a current list of printables available in addition to the 20 ebooks already included in the Ultimate Membership.

Outdoor Hour Challenge – Autumn Apple Study

Outdoor Hour Challenge Compare 2 Apples @handbookofnaturestudy

Outdoor Hour Challenge

Autumn Apple Study

From the Archives and the Autumn Ebook

Have you visited an apple orchard yet this season? We always looked forward to the autumn trip to apple country with the kids and they looked forward to the apple doughnuts and apple pies.

For this week’s challenge, gather at least two different varieties of apples for your family to observe, taste, and compare. It might be fun for your children to go with you to the store or farm stand to see all the different kinds of apples to choose from for this study.

Follow the directions in the challenge for making a close comparison of two kinds of apples.

Note: There is an Outdoor Hour Challenge for the actual apple tree in the archives under the tree tab at the top of the website.

Autumn 2010 Outdoor Hour Challenge

We are currently working through the Autumn 2010 ebook. For a complete nature study schedule for the next year, please click over and read this entry: Plans for October 2017 through August 2018.