It’s no wonder many movies have scenes showcasing the moon. What is it about this white circle in the sky that creates mystery and embrace? As a kid, the night sky and especially the moon would always be part of the excitement of being outside after dark. I can remember hunting and fishing before sunrise with heavy eyelids, the crisp morning air with the moon above would always make getting up early worth the struggle. The wonder and questions about the moon and our night’s sky would always come to mind but somehow that never really mattered. The sheer enjoyment of viewing the bright ball of light was always enough to satisfy.
Taking friends and family on night hikes is a wonderful way of creating vibrant memories, especially for those little ones. It’s important to show kids early just how safe the night is and how fun it can be. As our eyesight diminishes after sunset, a whole new world of smells and sounds is created. Whether it’s Spring Peepers, the distant yelping of Coyotes, or a Screech Owl whinnying away there is always something that creates awe, no matter your age. A recent night hike we during an especially cold January night ended at a camp fire with hot cocoa. What a memory this extra treat created after an unsuccessful evening of Owl-calling. You can’t always count on wild birds to cooperate but not only did the campfire and spending time with family make memories for visitors that night, I’ll never forget the kids running down the hill excitedly for a campfire and hot cocoa.
During these historic times of staying home and social distancing, one thing my family is enjoying immensly are private fires out back listening to Spring Peepers and American Woodcocks. Whether out in the country or in the city, try to get outside as much as you can right now. It really does wonders to calm the nerves.