Thursday, January 28, 2010

Birding the Appalachian Trail...

No, we are not out hiking the A.T. in January search of birds, but we are super proud to be featured in A.T. Journeys, The Magazine of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy this month!
Trail Birds
Text and Photos by Warren and Lisa Strobel

A few years ago, while section-hiking a portion of the Trail through Shenandoah National Park, we met a thru-hiker named Matt (we’ve long forgotten his Trail name) who told us something we’d never forget. “Everybody,” he said, “has to hike their own hike.”

We do hike our own hike.

We have walked every mile (595 Trail miles to date) wearing a pair of binoculars.

We not only hike the Appalachian Trail, we “bird” it.

Being avid birders has given us an opportunity to more deeply appreciate the vital habitat of the A.T. and the lands that surround it, and to reconfirm the importance of preserving andenhancing the Trail.

It’s well known to most everyone familiar with the Trail that it provides a critical corridor for both fauna and flora. But the Trail’s importance to the avian life of North (and even Southand Central) America, is hard to overstate.

The Appalachian Mountains are irreplaceable north-south migratory flyways for raptors andsongbirds, and serve as feeding stops and breeding grounds, as well.

They are the bird equivalent of interstate highway, fast-food joint, and comfy home all in one....

Read the rest of the story here (and see super cute pictures of Cute Husband in the act of birding AND hiking)

We are particularly proud to be associated with the The Appalachian Trail Conservancy and the work they do to protect a corridor of the East Coast for birds and the habitat they depend on.

An organizaton that is largely supported by hikers, but is well deserving of the support of birders for their work in conservation and education.


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Kelly said...

GG and I were thrilled to read your wonderful article! I wrote a letter to the editor explaining how much you opened our eyes to birding during our thru-hike. You were so kind to show us photographs from your birding book and even let us take pictures of portions of the book so we could refer to them later during our hike. (It wasn't published, but I'm glad that Alabama Birdman had his featured this month.) :)

I still think of you all whenever I hear a scarlet tanager.

Thanks again!

Happy Spring,

Ross Geredien said...

The things one finds on Birdcouple! I had no idea you were in AT Journeys. Very nice article.