Experiencing a Forest    Fores-@aol.com
   Aug 20, 2005 15:25 PDT 

I think that every type of forest we have is best experienced in person. It
isn't just the height or girth of the trees although it is never far from my
mind. The other attributes I try to notice range from song birds, wildlife
and understory vegetation to the soil fertility and local land use history.
I'm kinda a fan of woods as a "whole package" and I enjoy the detail of your
trip descriptions immensely.

Russ's Thoughts    Robert Leverett
   Aug 22, 2005 08:03 PDT 


   Your words are wise. Being sensitive to the pulse of life flowing
through the forest and the myriad of ways that the life force is
manifested separates the naturalists with a deep appreciation for nature
from the specialists with a single-minded purposes. Thoreau's and
Leopolds's mindset is the one that makes the most sense to me.

   Our ENTS focus in these e-mails on "bigness" and "tallness" sometimes
seems to be carried to excess, although all of us relate to the forest
in the way you describe. However, it is good for us to remind ourselves
of that gestalt that is the whole forest and to learn to be at one with
it. To be able to disconenct ourselves from our gadgets, our noble
purposes, and our steely-eyed objectivity and just soak it all up - to
be at one with the forest, is the greater good.   

   So, praise be to all the wee things that grow on the forest floor, in
the soil, and on the great trees. Wow! What have I been drinking? Man,
they must have put something extra in the hazelnut blend this AM.