MN Nature Activities: Jan 1-7, 2018

Happy New Year, Minnesota! You came in with a brrr so many annual first-day hikes have been cancelled, but there is plenty to enjoy in the coming days. Just think, every day is a bit sunnier and bit longer than the last now!

Have you strapped on the snowshoes this year? If not, or if this is your first time, here’s some fun inspiration!

 

01/06/18

Bird Language

9 a.m.–1 p.m. Join us as we gather on the slopes of the Minnesota River Valley to explore what the birds are telling us about our surroundings. We will split the time between the classroom and outdoors. Bring a notebook, pencils, and something to sit on outdoors. To register, visit: http://www.mntracking.org/

Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Classroom A)

 

Women in the Parks: Knot Tying

9-11 a.m. Spend a chilly afternoon inside learning a few knots that you might find useful on your next camping or canoeing trip. Materials provided. Free. Registration required. To register call 612-725-2724 or email krista.jensen@state.mn.us.

Fort Snelling State Park

 

Winter Photography and Lecture Hike

9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Winter is a great time to get out and take photos. The sun angle is low, and the air very clean due to the lack of humidity. With the proper preparation and an understanding of a few basic concepts we can capture some spectacular images. The program will begin with a lecture in the auditorium. Don will discuss some techniques for capturing winter images. He will also discuss how to properly protect yourself and your gear when shooting in cold temperatures. Topics covered include:

​- Benefits of winter photography
– Winter exposure challenges
– Protecting your equipment
– Protecting yourself

Bring your camera and warm clothes. We will be out on the trails for about 1 1/2 hours.

Bloomington Visitor Center

 

Let’s Snowshoe!

10 a.m. Is snowshoeing on your bucket list, but you don’t have the equipment? Well, now is the time! Participants will meet at the Visitor Center and go through a short introduction on snowshoes, and the basic fundamentals of snowshoeing. Then you can check out the snowshoes, explore the park, look for tracks and wildlife, really get a feel for snowshoeing and you have until 3pm to get the snowshoes back to the visitor center. There are a limited number of snowshoes, so please call the park office at 651-433-0500 to sign-up. We do need 6 inches of snow on the ground to snowshoe, if there is a lack of snow, the program will be cancelled

William O’Brien State Park

 

Golden Eagle Program

10:30 a.m. Find out about golden eagles in the blufflands from the man who knows them best. Scott Mehus, National Eagle Center Education Directors and Golden Eagle Project Co-coordinator, will share his 20 years of experience observing golden eagles in southeast Minnesota and Wisconsin. You?ll learn how to identify golden eagles in the wild and some of the best places to look for these elusive raptors.

Whitewater State Park

 

Golden Eagle Survey Training

Noon-3 p.m. Scott Mehus of the National Eagle Center will host this training session to prepare volunteers of the January 20 Wintering Golden Eagle Survey. There will be an indoor presentation and an outdoor session to practice identifying golden eagles in the field. Please note there will not be a live golden eagle at the training. Sign up for this training by email at sara.holger@state.mn.us or by phone at 507-312-2308.

Whitewater State Park

 

Snowshoeing for Beginners

11-Noon We will begin with a brief talk about different types of snowshoes, then go outside for a how-to-lesson and a snowshoe hike. Snowshoes are provided. Registration is required and limited. To register, call 320-532-3269 & leave your name, phone # and number of people attending. Meet at the Interpretive Center.

Mille Lacs Kathio State Park

 

Knot Tying Basics

1:30-3 p.m. Spend a chilly afternoon inside learning a few knots that you might find useful on your next camping or canoeing trip. Materials provided. Registration required. To register call 612-725-2724 or email krista.jensen@state.mn.us.

Fort Snelling State Park

 

01/07/18

Snowshoeing Basics – Activity Full; To be added to the waitlist please call 612-725-2724.

1:30-3 p.m. Burn a few extra calories and learn about an ancient mode of transportation. Equipment provided and registration required. Dress for the weather, wear sturdy winter boots and meet at the Visitor Center.

Fort Snelling State Park

 

Featured Volunter Opportunity: January 28 to January 31, 2018.

John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon